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Concerned Citizen and a Serial Entrepreneur wrapped in a progressive democratic soul longing for us all to get along.

Friday, December 27, 2013

Today is Friday, Dec. 27th

This year Christmas will be remembered because we spent it quietly together, welcoming Carol with shrimp cocktail and filet mignon and mashed potatoes... mmmmm  and then, the visiting nurse arrived and sometimes you know when they're only in it for the $$$.   It was great that our T was seen but she was in & out quickly and when I thanked her for coming;  she said "somebody was gonna pay big for this one"... nice...

We walked on the beach and waited until mid afternoon (T needed a nap) to open our presents and we were thankful for the day and each other....

Riley with his new present

T relaxing
Merry Christmas to you all!!!

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Today is Christmas Eve, Dec. 24th, 2013

So we left off on Sat.  as I was hoping to rescue T from Dominican... told he'd be discharged at 12:30, I huffed and I puffed and finally we left about 2 and T was free with a commitment that the visiting nurse would be by that evening to instruct us on how to flush his PIC and administer a VANCO trough to rid his infection. argh... and so the story goes...  twice a day with the help of PIC line extensions T flushes and administers the antibiotic for the next several weeks.  I'm so thankful that T can do this!

T is amazing!  He is ready, willing and able to do whatever it takes to live and his attitude is phenomenal.  I am trying to muster up all the energy needed and so far so good... altho'  I just read the riot act on a recorded line to the Walgreens person gathering the info needed for T to get his Neupogen delivered to our home.  I didn't swear nor did I raise my voice.  I just very sternly questioned why the prescribing Dr. now must justify to Blue Shield the reason T needs Neupogen and said this whole process is wrong and unacceptable.  Isn't it obvious by the sheer fact that the Dr. prescribed it????   So, instead of making it easy for a very needy patient, Tracy is forced to go to Dr. Wu's office everyday for a shot until Blue Shield decides to release the meds and oh by the way,  it's much more expensive for T to get the shot administered at PAMF.... duh

I digress but if you read my blog, you know that.  So, home for T late afternoon Sat.  Sun. was an entire day of football and T's first trip back to the beach in over a month.  We took it easy and T is nowhere near Riley's presents as we park at Platforms beach and walk to Seascape and back..  T is so glad to be home and reveling in the spirits of the sea...  I took care of business... worked most of the day on several deals, visited with Pat, pizza and finally bed...  oh sweet bed and peace...

very early Mon. morning we arrived at Stanford at 7:15... and T had his labs and then, we joined the queue for the clinic visit with Dr. Liedtke.  OMG!!!  I heard it... she said "REMISSION"  stunned we both reeled and then, T in his inimitable way, said so why do I need anything else?  Well, this is not endurable or lasting and his counts are still non-existant... what's next?  Chemo every Mon.  and hopefully,  Penn later next month...  we're hoping for entry into the Penn study after the 18th?  Pray hard, surround us with white healing light and FaceTime.

T wants to live normally again... so, stop by if you're well and not exposed to illness... and soap up and visit... my eyes kept leaking... tears of joy kept escaping... as we wound our way home with a stop at Costco for gas and supplies and then, several hours of work until a cooking frenzy forced me to make eggplant parmigiana and T's favorite Marchegian sauce while we watched our 49ers fight their way to victory!!!

Merry Christmas eve!!!

Love, luck, health and happiness!!!

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Today is Saturday, December 21st

Catching up is hard to do but necessary... Wed.,  T had a very long day at Stanford as they topped him off with 2 units of blood, platelets and a bone marrow test.... release sweet release after almost a month of Stanford hospitality.  Courtney, Janice, Dr. Franks took their turns and finally at 7PM I retrieved the chariot and we escaped... home sweet home Riley awaited his daddy.  T was pooped so,  straight away to bed and dreamland with Riley tucked in between.  T had a hard night and I awoke and mobilized.  CVS & Blue Shield had to be tackled & retrained since our Alan had been charged for T's prescriptions and so I greeted Thurs.  After several phone calls, a trip to retrieve an additional pain med and a lot of frustration, Jan & Tom picked me up for Eddy's funeral in Livermore as T & Riley got reacquainted... singing home for the holidays...  ahhh....

Eddy Paul Pevarnick was a father extraordinaire.  He fathered Deb, Di, Gail & Denise and took in his siblings children and then, added all of we strays to the mix.  What I will always remember about Eddy is his bear hug and constant humor.  Everyone was welcome in that warm home in Cupertino and food and libation would always be shared.... and Eddy's ear would be to the ground waiting to help or humor... What an enormous presence filled with so much unrestrained  undisciplined non-judgemental love.  Eddy took us all on and we kept coming back for more.  never a complaint except "where you been?"  Thank God for having stumbled into his warm embrace as our world will miss his larger than life ways... "Eddy" the one and only has newly acquired angel wings.. may he rest with the rest of our families... we toasted him with a White Russian at the reception and caught up with long lost friends.

T & Riley home awaiting a late dinner with me...  unbelievable how that feels to come home to T again... T was very tired and I was ready to collapse as we climbed into bed about 9:30.  Then T remarked that his PIC arm was hurting... after a glance we mobilized.  Off to the Dominican emergency room where we waited and dozed until T was put in a room and we cuddled on the gurney.  T would need blood tests etc. but ultimately,  he would be admitted.  His PIC line was infected. I left him to go home to sleep as Friday beckoned.

T is in room 2310;  I went to an inspection of 123 Camino Pacifico, gathered all the signed disclosures .. on to a comparative marketing apt. and then,  the office.  Craving sleep but duty called... my poor T stuck at Dominican.  He's soooo sick of hospitals and Dominican just doesn't measure up.  The first thing I made a deal over was the wide open door.  T then laid out the fact he'd been ignored for the last 3 hours without water etc.  The nurse got an earful and we schemed to rescue him on Sat. with a visiting nurse to come and show me, the squeamish one, how to flush T's PIC line.  Home to veg and sub for T on the massage table... sleep beckoned but elusive until I took a sleep aid  and now the dawn starts a new day....

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Today is Tuesday, December 17th

Our Adolfo's story as explained by Pat:   I am writing to let you know that my dear friend and handyman extraordinaire, Adolfo Ramirez,  is the father of the young woman, Daisy Ramirez, who was hit by a car in Salinas on Saturday night while crossing the street in a crosswalk. She is in a coma in critical condition at the ICU of the Regional Medical Center in San Jose. She has a severely fractured tibia as well as broken pelvis, scapula, and clavicle, but the major problem is she has a severe brain injury. The doctor said it could be several weeks before the swelling goes down, so they cannot determine the extent of the damage until then. One can only imagine the impact this will have on this 18 year old girl who was had just taken on an intensive program at CSUMB and Hartnell colleges in June with the goal of attaining her degree in Computer Science in just 3 years. She had already been approached by Google while in high school due to her already-developed computer skills. She is a true star and the light of Adolfo and Veronica's eyes.
 As you likely know, Adolfo is the sole bread winner in the family, so if he does not work each day, he is not paid. Given that he must travel to San Jose each day with Veronica, his wife, he is unable to work, at least for the next several weeks until there is some plan in place for Daisy. As you know, he has been the "go to guy" for me and many of my friends for our unending home improvement and repair jobs. He is an amazing man and devoted husband and father who is devastated by this event.
I hope you share our sorrow and sadness at this horrific situation. We know we cannot help medically, but we can help assuage his financial fears if we each could pitch in toward his rent and living expenses. 
If you are interested please contact Anne Marie for the information to send a check.

 We all know how helpful it can be when a bunch of caring people pull together at a time like this. It is likely to be a long, hard struggle and the Ramirez family will need all the help, support, prayers, and love we can give. We greatly appreciate anything you can do.
  Take care of yourselves and hug each other just a little harder! Life is very, very fragile!
Pat and John

Make a wish:  Daisy Ramirez returns and the Ramirez family survives this.  This is a very deserving family.  Love to you all.

More to share... Eddy Pevarnick, the Patriarch of the Pevarnick family, father to Deb, Di, Gail & Denise and father figure to us all;  joined the angels yesterday.  The funeral service will be 1:00 Thursday in Livermore.  I will always remember Eddy's humor, quick smile and loving embrace.  He took us all in to his huge heart and family and we will miss him dearly.

Be kind to yourselves and to each other... we have today... let's embrace it!!!

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Today is Sunday, December 15th

Lunch with a dear friend... seals leaping over the waves chased by dolphins... neighbors helping to  put up our tree...others dropping off food.. dinner made with love... FaceTime with my T.... I'm overwhelmed and scared... feeling lost and found... every day is different.  A new challenge, a new problem to be solved and the sun comes up every morning on a new day and our Riley wants his tour of the beach.  He stands for being washed with cold water cause he loves being caressed by towels and all the attention...  all these elements of any given day give me pause... the wonder of life.

I've been very apprehensive about the next step.   Tracy's care is all consuming.  Should something happen while I'm caring for him... if I make a mistake or not notice something important...  the stress, the fear,  the weight ... my shoulders ache already. ... Dr. Frank came in yesterday so we could ask all the ?'s we had and discuss the possibilities... thank God for that.  It comes down to this:  temp over 100 degrees - call the ITA asap;  next step either emergency or back to Stanford.  Simple really..  T has been very patient but he wants and needs to come home... it's been over 3 weeks and he's tired of all of it... but he walks and he makes friends; he deals with it all with such enormous heart... I love his heart....  and his courage...  life is truly about how you handle plan B.

While FaceTime ing T as we watched the game today... our glorious win over Tampa Bay.. Pat called to give us some horrendous news that I can't quite cope with.  Adolfo has been our saving grace... he built the art shack that T designed and he'd been helping me in the house for weeks now.  His beloved 18 yr. old daughter attending a special combined program at Hartnell College & Monterey was crossing the street in a crosswalk and was hit by a car yesterday.  She is at the Trauma Center in San Jose in a coma with a bleeding brain and broken bones galore.  How does that happen? Please surround her with white healing light and if you can help in any way... money, lodging for Adolfo  (they live in Watsonville and his wife won't leave her daughter's room) you will be dearly blessed.  Contact me and I'll set up a fund for our Adolfo... they're going to need a lot of help.

BTW:  As always any comments or messages are welcome.  T can't have any visitors cause his counts are so low but FaceTime is just like skype only with an Apple device.  Try it you'll like it and so will T.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Today is Thursday, December 12th

I startled awake at 1:30am and thought it was morning... gazed at my iPhone and started playing solitaire...then reality struck.  My T is NOT here... and so the saga continues...  I had put a bag together for T on Tues. evening...AAA batteries, T shirts, toothbrush plus a Subway order for a foot long cold cut combo and a root beer.  Wed. morning was cold, crisp and clear as Riley & I set off for our beach... greeted the usual walkers and rushed back for coffee and decided to dress for my honey... green velour dress, textured tights & boots w/ scarf (my honey gave me awhile back) & some fun jewelry....Called in the lunch order & scooted off... Cupertino for the sub and great timing until I hit the Stanford quagmire... several roads blocked off for the huge building project... T reassured me that we'd see the Dr. after the musical program so not to worry...  On the way in, I checked for a room number for an old pal... turns out he's right next door to T.  He mentioned that he had heard T rooting for the Bears on Mon. evening... and he's Bruno's patient too... weird, huh?

Off to hear a wonderful 2 guitar musical arrangement of the Nutcracker Suite in the Atrium and snuggle with my T.  Music is our key... bonding and melding into each other ...  concert over  my mission was to find root beer (I'd forgotten it)  so, winding thru the underground maze to the children's hospital cafeteria for 'diet' root beer... didn't make T really happy but that was all there was..  lunch & a knock on the door... Bruno!  We didn't expect to see him cause it was his first day back -  he'd gone to Brazil for the holiday and then upon return - a biz trip to New Orleans.  So, we were so pleasantly surprised to see him.... with the straight story.

This protocol is an intermediate step.  We hope for remission but there will be a next step... asked whether T could come home after this cycle?  it's not a question of 'can' he BUT should he?  His Neutraphil count isn't even registering so, he's susceptible to anything and everything.  How many cycles of this protocol?  what's next?  Wait and see...  Bruno said there's a 'sexy' new protocol... no statistics, no idea what the outcome could be... something to consider or transplant?  known outcome and predictable results.  or Penn study?  Well, the real question for the Penn study is what are they working on right now?  Are they testing folks who've relapsed after one protocol or two? Or patients that are in remission?   Lots of questions and no real answers as yet but lots of food for thought.

Bruno left the room and T made room for me to snuggle...  and Albert, T's nurse took this...


Monday, December 9, 2013

Today is Monday, December 9th, 2013

Very busy weekend so let's catch up...  I saw T on Sat. for an afternoon visit.. walked and talked and wished I could have curled up beside him...
T 12/7/13

Look at that hair

So T is faring well and flirting with all those wonderful nurses... During my visit Casey related that she'd walked in on T several days ago when he'd been freed from all IV's for a little while and T had Santana's 'Smooth' playing as he danced around his room.... our song... can't wait to dance with him again... soon

So the news:  once a week chemo infusion for a 3 week cycle starting last Tues.   Not sure how many cycles and whether T will come home at all in between.  argh...  
Naughty boy

The coast has been absolutely alive with marine life... anchovies ever present so, yesterday, Sunday, Riley & my walk on the beach was amazing... I could hear the seals from the trail... looked like Hitchcock's "the Birds" and the dolphins were frolicking amongst the otters and seals...  Home to put in a couple more work related hours and then, off to the Whitnicks for the Niner game!!  Good news: They showed up and beat those rascal SeaHawks and what a game!!!  Riley loved being in a different house and being fed tri-tip and assorted cheeses and crackers...  I was glad to be surrounded by family...  FaceTime w/ T was sooo fun as we all watched the game...

I'm off to show property... keep sending white light to surround our T and Carpe diem!!!

Friday, December 6, 2013

Today is Friday, December 6th

The good news is T is doing well... his spirits are up and I'm loving FaceTiming him!  He looks great and I can't wait to see him...

I had a great day yesterday!  Lots of work related stuff- previewing property, preliminary study for a potential listing and great news that David's offer was accepted for a San Jose home.  I'm very glad for him!!!  Today I had a listing apt. and am very excited about the opportunity.

and then, there was a very strange call from a 'care nurse' wanting to speak to T.  After explaining that he was in the hospital and I could speak for us; she proceeded to try and get an apt. to 'help' us through this difficult period.  I kept asking what she could do for us and finally she said she could explain stuff to me.  I said that wasn't necessary and that I didn't have a problem questioning anything  (she certainly doesn't know me) I didn't understand and basically questioning everything.  Well, she ended up calling T and asking to meet with us.  Since I hadn't had a chance to speak with T prior to her call; he consented and asked her to call me to set it up.  Once again without speaking to T first; I went ahead and scheduled it for mid-week.  I've had a bad feeling about it all day, then, I finally spoke with T.   We agreed.  We don't need Blue Shield to get in the middle.  I'll be canceling that meeting directly.

So, with the love and support of our family and friends we'll make it through this and live to fight another day....

 May Father Mandela rest with the Angels as he so deserves...

Carpe diem!!!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Today is Wednesday, December 4th

Aching heart... twenty four years ago today Daddy passed away... awoke this morning feeling very sad and stomach sick... so I decided to give myself a day off... been meaning to just vege and it hasn't happened.  So today, I tackled my Quicken issues and with the help of Kirk Reid, phenomenal tech support!  I was able to get back into it and take care of finances.  Phew!

Tracy had a very bad night BUT the good news is he was going to go to the holiday ballet in the Stanford Atrium today and his paperwork has gone to Penn.  OMG!  Tears of joy!  I'm taking deep breaths and I hope you'll all send good intentions to Penn too and surround our boy with white light.

So, Daddy was ill and in hospice for about a week when he passed away.  His body had just given up.  He had been ill for a very long time.  I had moved back to the east coast, DC to be closer to my elderly folks (a 6 hr. drive up 95 in my BMW, a puddle jumper to New Haven or a relaxing train ride)  I was HR for the Apple Federal Systems Group & Govt. Affairs.  I felt very torn and unable to grieve ... death is complicated .. I was almost relieved because his caregiver, my Mom, was failing under his pressing needs.  How do you deal with that?  I tried to get back to work in a week... that's what corp. America deems plausible and several years later it hit me like a ton of bricks.  My advice:  take the time to grieve...   So, like a lot of folks, Dad & Mom had waited for WW2 to end to marry.  They were older when they had we 3 kids so, just when I was mature enough to have a relationship... they were gone.

Now, I'm almost jealous of my peers who still have their parents in their lives... but I was lucky to have them for as long as I did.  Rest in peace...Daddy.

Carpe diem

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Today is Tuesday, December 3rd

Timing is everything!  I keep repeating that mantra and it keeps on ringing true...

I'll admit it... I had a melt down last night.   I was pissed at myself for wasting time over the last year arguing or just not talking to my T.  What a stupid idiot to not have seized each and every day!!!
My partner in life was at the heart of it all... I finally slipped into dream land, realizing that today would be a new day.... isn't it amazing how that works?  we get the opportunity to start fresh every single day!  Carpe diem!!!

Frustrated that my dryer chose yesterday to cease heating...one more thing to deal with... after Adolpho did everything he could to clean the hoses... I put out the call to my network for an appliance repair man.  This morning before we left for the beach, I called C&N Appliance Repair.  Ken reassured me that he knew my Maytag Neptune inside & out and he really did!!!  He even had the part in his truck and in about 20 min. my dryer was back!!!  He's the best!!!

So, Riley & I set out for a walk to the beach this morning and he was soooo excited!  We walked and I felt the salt air renewing me. Afterwards as I was rinsing our boy off, I noticed his skin was irritated around his stomach and groin.  Poor thing!  Immediately into our shower, amazed as he willingly entered without so much as a backward glance... he smells so good now and he's stopped constantly licking...Riley is back!

I Facetime'd T and he's starting on the Itusaman (spelling?) clinical trial today.  Treatment has begun.  He's on the road back...

Catching up with some clients and then, I'm going to slip into my slug station and just plain vege.

CARPE DIEM!!!  White light surrounding us all...

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Today is Sunday, December 1st

Good News?  We could all use some!  Bad News?  I'm out of steam...  So, thank you all my friends and family for the phone calls and emails!!!  Your support and concern are phenomenal.... but please try to understand... I feel like I've run a marathon and didn't train for it and by the way,  there's no medal in sight.  I'm going to rest at home for a few days.  Take care of business and restore my energy.

Please forgive me if I don't answer your phone calls & emails right away... try to understand there's only one of me and you're all important to us,  I just need to regain my strength.  Traveling is brutal and I hit the ground running.  Wrote 2 offers yesterday and drove to Stanford... today I went back to meet with T's doctors....

We have great hopes!!!  T is in good hands even tho' Bruno is still out of the country.  We met with the team this morning and we're satisfied.  T will need to start with a new protocol very quickly.  The leukemia cells that have emerged were not extinguished with the initial protocol.  Continuing down that road would be fruitless.  There is a Stanford trial that T will hopefully, be accepted into shortly...

With our permission today, T will also be submitted for the Univ. of Pa. protocol that we read about last year in the NY Times.  One of the Drs. we spoke with has the personal experience of having referred a patient for the study who is now CURED!!!!  We want in!!!! ... the new Stanford trial has not yielded very long remissions but T needs intervention asap and it will NOT preclude T being considered for the U of Pa trial.   Of course, Stanford will probably have the same clinical trial sometime in the next year or two.  Unfortunately, that won't work for our T.

 Send white light please and all the good energy you can!!!   Upon admittance to the U of Pa study,  T will have to go to Pa. and have T cells harvested.  Not sure of all the time constraints etc.  but we're going down this road with great intention and lots of enthusiasm cause we want our T around for many years to come...

Love, luck and happiness...  you know, timing is everything!!!

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Today is Friday, November 30th

what is it about this time of year?  People check out... like my Dad on Dec. 4th, 1989 and Tracy's Dad right after Christmas 1993 and then, there are the blips on the screen...  

I'm a little crazy and in love and knowing that there IS a solution.  Unfortunately, I have bad news.  Tracy's leukemia has returned.  He was admitted to Stanford last Fri. just before my trip and upon my return last evening, he told me the truth.  I'm going to see his Dr. tomorrow at 9am & I'll have more news then.  please check my blog.  it's tough to try and keep up with everyone....

I'm convinced that there is a treatment that will rid my T of this F____g disease!  I know there are several alternative ways to go.  1 is at the Univ. of Penn.- read about it last year in the NYTimes.  If T has to go to Pa. ; we'll figure it out.  There's some other program going on at Stanford also.  Tomorrow will tell... I'm exhausted.  Wrote an offer on a short sale today and then, went to Stanford to see my T and bring him some personal stuff.  My T has a deep depth of love and emotion...

I just finished writing an offer for a fabulous RDM home this evening.  Somebody's got to make the donuts as my bro said...

Keep the faith and keep the white light coming PLEASE!!!!!

Friday, November 29, 2013

Today is Friday, November 29th

Quite a respite and fabulous Thanksgiving holiday!!!  I'm now sitting in the Admirals Club at Logan Airport awaiting my flight... sipping a latte and trying to decide how I'll spend the time 'til about 11:30AM which is when I think we'll be boarding.

Yesterday was food loaded and a lot of fun.  The turduckit was fabulous!!  Holly is quite a foodie so, it was fun to partake.  My great niece loved her dress and put it on immediately
Arwin in her new dress
 When Ethan, my great nephew, opened his packages and found just clothes he bolted.  What no toys?
What a waste of time!!!

So, then there were the desserts....mmmmm!!!

So, I hope you all had a fabulous Thanksgiving holiday!!!

I'm on my way back home and I'll see my T tomorrow right after I've shown a San Jose home to David.

Love, luck & happiness!!!

Unwrapping our presents

My traditional cheesecake
Cheesecake & Apple Pie

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Today is Wed., Nov. 27th

I've been a good girl... thought about everything, made decisions and then executed... made my cheesecake from memory and my SW Texas chile appetizer once again from memory... now will T come home soon?  That is the ? of the day.

Catch up... Sat. I flew in to Boston and Johnny and Shar picked me up.  We then motored down to Nick & Carol's in North Haven where they fed & watered us well and entertained us and we called it a very long day.

Aunt Etta's party was fabulous!!!
My First Cousins: Vinny, Bobby & Paul D'Amico
Aunt Etta's sons

Here's the thing... Aunt Etta didn't get to go... she said she had a premonition that she might not make it and guess what?  She broke her hip Thurs. nite when she stubbornly took her garbage out down the steep stairs to the garage... she said she thought twice about it...but she did it even after she hesitated.  She knew Bobby was due in 15 min. but she wanted it out.
Testadura... hard head in Italian... love her so...anyway she was operated on on Fri. and we saw her on our way in to the party at St. Raphael's campus of Yale New Haven Hospital.  We walked in as a nun was about to give her communion.  The nun said "oh my God!  So much love in this room!" as Johnny, Shar & I walked in.  We said the Lord's Prayer together and Aunt Etta received the communion wafer as tears leaked out of my eyes...  she is lucid if not all the pieces fit exactly together... she's 100!!!  We asked what she had done and she replied "well I had a stent put in" and we changed the subject as she rambled on.  She's adorable and she was able to give info on all her grandchildren and was so happy we were there.. especially Johnny.   We kissed her and ached for our Mom and were happy that we'd come to Ct. after all.  Next stop:  St. Lawrence Cemetery to see Mom, Daddy, Cenz & Nonna & Nonoon nestled under a tree in the blustery cold wind.

Fried Clams & Johnny's Smelts
Food has been a big part of the trip... Lucibello's for Canoli Sicilian.. Pepe's for a pizza pie...  in New Haven... home of the original pizza pie also unwilling to make a white clam pizza for takeout on Sundays.  Damn them!  Mon. wonderful grilled swordfish at Shar's and then, Tues. fried clams and after an amazing Oyster Chowder at a brew pub in Plymouth after we saw Jay's art exhibited at a gorgeous Plymouth gallery.  Then today,  lobsta roll 1.

Lobsta Roll 1

Jay's art is so fresh and unique and I really loved experiencing it in such a cool gallery "the Artist Exposure Gallery" in Plymouth....

So great to be with family at this time... trying not to be a downer...  made my traditional cheesecake which I'll decorate with fresh berries and my Southwest appetizer for Thanksgiving.  Amazing:  Driscoll berries in abundance in Cape Cod!  Sure wasn't available when I was a kid.

Tracy had his bone marrow test yesterday; we'll have to wait 'til Fri.  for results.  He's hanging in there... had a PIC line installed today cause he had such a dreadful time a couple days ago with them poking him.  Probably an LP too in the next few days.  T has been told he's gonna have to stay for a couple weeks if not more. The pain in his back was shingles and it's bad and extremely contagious... when I visit, I'll have to suit up completely with mask...  there's talk of chemo again but nothing is for sure.  I need to be there and I will be soon.  I miss my T very much... and Riley boy too.  I love my family and I'm grateful to be here in the East with them... sure don't know when I'll see them again soon...  My family at home is tending our Riley and keeping T's spirits up with Face time.

Tomorrow is a day to be thankful for all the little things and especially the fact that we get to celebrate at all....   Happy Thanksgiving!!!

                                            CARPE DIEM!!!!

Monday, November 25, 2013

Today is Mon., November 25th

I guess it's time to play catch up...  the last couple weeks have been quite the ride....

So, my man T had 2 Neupogen shots per week, the last two weeks and then, increased to 3 last week after seeing Bruno.  We started the process of getting a new prescription for home delivery which will probably take forever and in the interim T was to go to Dr. Wu's office for weekly labs and the shots. When we arrived to see Dr. Wu on Fri.; he stepped into the exam room shaking his head as he read the results.  His words were hard to hear.  "go to Stanford emergency immediately."  Tracy needed blood but his irradiated blood type couldn't be delivered until Mon. AND he felt Tracy's blood counts required immediate attention.  So, I went into solutions mode.  I cancelled a scheduled business meeting and a hair apt.  Office to take care of business and then, home to pack a bag for T and ask Alan for help with our Riley.   Tracy was admitted Fri. evening after the hematology crew saw him in the emergency room.  I left at 7PM with T's words insisting that I NOT cancel my scheduled trip to the east coast.

Yesterday, was our 18th wedding anniversary and T & I loved each other from afar.  We facetimed (it's a verb now) this morning and it was wonderful to see him... can't imagine having spent the last 20 years anywhere without him.  He has always been my rock.  We've had our ups and downs especially this past summer but when we speak from our hearts... like we have been for the last weeks and months... there's no stopping us.  I love him so....

So,  the second weekend in Nov. was fun loaded.  I had a great tour with clients and then, home to get gussied up and off to the Panetta Institute's Lincoln Jefferson Awards at the Inn at Spanish Bay in Pebble Beach.  The recipients of the awards were U.S. Senators Saxby Chambliss, Barbara Mikulski and newscaster Bob Schieffer.   I was 1 of 5 politically minded friends invited by Lila to share an amazing evening!!!  

Ready or not?
Pat & I Oh Boy!
Tina & Zach Friend, Pat, me & Lila
 Truly a memorable evening!!!

Next day we went to Candlestick to see the 49ers vs the Panthers... Argh!!!  Tracy was allowed to go cause it's an open air stadium and we were in Jayne's seats on the aisle.  Our last trip to the 'stick' and unfortunately, the niners never showed up...

Since then, lots of fun with assisting clients in their quest for homes... the Professors are now in contract in Seascape and Laura and Christian are in their new Woods Cove home and David may have found a San Jose home that he likes and Mark and Kathy are zeroing in on a new Rio Del Mar home.  Oh boy!! Lots of fun...

Stay tuned...

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Sat., November 23rd

Here I am on a plane heading east and the love of my life is at Stanford Hospital.  What?!*#!!!

I’m fulfilling my desire to see my Mom’s twin celebrate her 100th birthday…  where’s Mom?  Up in heaven, I hope looking down and saying she’s got T surrounded….  that’s what I remember about my Mom… call her anytime day or night and she had the right words… the feeling that she always surrounded me with love and support and so much heart…  her first words were always “ now come on now…  you know you can handle this…  let’s see what to do”  She never heard “No” either… my Mom the original love of my life.   She knew how to encourage or coax or just plain say the right words.  Oh, how I miss those early morning phone calls.  She lived in Ct. and the time difference was just right.  I would call her as I had my first cup of coffee in my lovely Los Gatos home filled with love…. Tracy would be upstairs in bed and Max and Spec would be waiting… I would check in to see what that amazing creature was up to.  Just think if she had had a Mom like her… what she would have accomplished… She saw my soul and never flinched… not once… through it all, she was there… even when she heard what she didn’t want to hear.  To be a Mom to all, to love without any rules… she was the one who gave me the word… “Just QUIT”  when it was time to recognize I’d done what I set out to do… pull the HR dept together in Chicago… set them free and then, set me free… or when I was admitted and decided not to go to law school… Daddy wanted grandbabies… Mom said “be the best of whatever you are”… and another decision was acknowledged and accepted without judgement.  Amazing the backbone of a little Italian powerhouse.

My reverie stems from too little sleep and being faced with my love being admitted cause he needs help.  He’s in the best place possible right now… Stanford Docs caring and loving my man… bringing him back from the brink..  Bruno is out of the country but the Hematology crew is on it.  It pays to be a ‘character’ if you’re gonna have to deal with medical issues.  If you’re memorable or have a personality; you’ll attract attention and that will go far in the pursuit of a solution.  I think Tracy was admitted while a lot of folks were waiting simply because we were articulate about what he needed and soon please.  Amazing how that works….  When I put it to Tracy... should I go or should I stay?  T replied " Would you rather go to a celebration or funeral?"  So here I go...

Friday, November 8, 2013

Today is Friday, November 8th, 2013

Harrowing last few weeks but once again... we shall survive.  A week ago Tues., during my annual wellness exam, my doctor found a 1.7 cm lump in my right breast.  I had already scheduled my mammogram for the following Mon. but my Dr. insisted that I should go immediately.  I had a digital mammogram and then a sonagram and then, a biopsy.... man oh man the pain was immense but the waiting over the weekend until Tues. afternoon was excruciating.  The answer:  benign PHEW!!!  The weird part:  a milk duct had basically blown apart.  The doctors were flummoxed.  How could that happen?

I think I've figured out the puzzle with the help of my wonderful masseuse, Jan.    Last evening as I lay down on the table;  I explained my black & blued breast and the ? of the hematoma.  Jan reminded me about my last fun day in Hawaii.  I enjoyed boogie boarding while in Kauai until the very last day.  I was tethered to the board and rode a spectacular wave only to realize way too late that it was only the first of a set of very turbulent waves.  I succeeded in coming up for air but only after those waves had beaten me to the ocean floor several times.  After realizing that I'd also done a face plant; I exited thankfully and quickly put ice on my swollen right eye before the black eye surfaced.  I do believe that's where my breast hematoma derived from.  Whaddayathink?

So, I think that's enough for me.  T, however, has been declared neutrapenic again.  So, while he languors, he'll be taking 2 neupogen shots a week for the next 2 weeks and we'll be hoping his white cells start climbing...  white light needed...

This shall be a fun weekend... showing property to great clients on Sat. and then, celebrating at the Leon Panetta Gala at Pebble Beach as a guest of Lila's and then, Sun. off to see the 49ers play the Panthers at the Stick.  Wow!!!

I'll check in next week hopefully, with some photos...

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Today is Wednesday, October 23rd, 2013

Amazing how this year is flying by!!!  I am in love with this season... leaves changing colors and a slight crispness to the air.  The fall brings back fond memories of school starting and new friendships beginning ... yielding to the encroaching inevitable winter ... cuddling for warmth and hot chocolate ... evenings of card games and movies surrounded by the warmth of family and friends.

We've been busy.  We finally took a trip!!!!   Our first real vacation since Feb. 2010 and oh what a delight it was!  We went to our favorite island of Kauai and stayed in a brand new cottage across the street from Poipu beach.  Wow!!!  http://www.vrbo.com/3565510ha 

My only complaint was I would have liked to stay longer!!!  and then, there were the roosters which we became inured to as the week played out.  Johnny & Shar trekked the island with us and we enjoyed the Art Walk in Hanapepe on Fri. evening, finding the only and quite wonderful book store on the island - Talk Story and coasting up to Princeville and to the end of the road... but mostly just relaxing, reading or playing crazy rummy on the lanai as the sunlight waned and the music filled us up...
View from the lanai

T with a sculpture buddy in Koloa town

My business has been wonderful this year as I returned to focussing on my clients and was relieved of the caregiver role.  Tracy is in remission and doing well now that he's recovered from the respiratory vicious virus he picked up upon our return...  it was pretty scary for about a week when a visit to our GP turned into an encounter with Dr. Wu, his oncologist and then, an immediate trip for a biopsy of his lymph gland in his neck... he was looking like a not so healthy line backer for a bit there and put the scare back that the continual chemo may have caused his lymphoma to act up... ai yi yi!!!!  The poor guy has had enough thank you very much!!!  Anyway,  Tracy is much better and actually fast at work on the Art shack again with Adolpho's able assistance.  Picked out the vinyl for the floor and the paint on Mon.  Hopefully, we'll be creating in it pretty soon...

and we're back to the beach with our Riley boy who finds the biggest stick and insists on playing...

Carpe diem!!!

Monday, September 9, 2013

Today is Monday, September 9th

In my life, there is nothing so constant as change...  unfolding, swirling emotional twists...

I need to rant about this new proposal from this otherwise sane administration as we approach the anniversary of 9/11.  How could anyone look at bombing Syria seriously?  The sides are abominable- Hezbollah or Al Queda?  Who cares?  Let them work it out themselves... I've read that this wasn't the first time they've gassed their own people and I wonder why at this juncture, we would want to get involved.  Our most important allies in the United Nations aren't willing to get involved.  The Arab nations are perfectly willing to stay out of it.  Why us?  Why now?

I cannot see where bombing Syria solves anything.  If we truly look at the consequences... I believe that it's a 'here we go again' war in a place we don't belong with enemies that would love to retaliate.  The USA doesn't need to be the world's peace keeper.  The United Nations should be serving in that role.

We accomplish nothing by bombing Syria!!!  Other than, another involvement in a place we don't belong with abundant enemies and no true friends and a lot to lose.  Have we NOT learned our lessons with Viet Nam, Afghanistan and Iraq????

Will someone stand up and speak the truth?!!!

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Today is Tuesday, September 3rd, 2013

Wow!  What an amazing trip it's been... sometimes I need to remind myself that it is the journey not the reward...

As we wind into Indian summer, I'm thinking about all the lessons that life brings us.  The balmy nights remind me of growing up on the East coast where we squeezed every last moment from the summer 'cause we knew winter was on it's way...

A high school friend and his wife, David & Donna Cosenza are visiting from Connecticut and it's been a delight to catch up with them.  Jayne, David and I were on the reminiscing trail on Sunday at a delicious BBQ complete with mariachis...  we also toasted Tom's continuing recovery from his Cancer bout...Yay Tom!!!

Gary & Deanna hosted us @ Shakespeare Santa Cruz in the Glen Sat. night.... Taming of the Shrew was well done and marked the end of the season and hopefully, NOT the end of the program.  A sudden announcement this past week that the program was under financed and that the university had decided not to continue their underwriting shocked the community.  We'll see where this goes...

Sometimes I wonder why some lessons are so hard... am I not listening?

I hope you all had a wonderful Labor day weekend now... Get back to work!!!

Ha! Ha!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Today is Wed. August 28th

I know, I know it's been a very long time!!!  All I can say is life got in the way...

As our traditional summer winds into a glorious Indian summer;  the coast is balmy and warm and very interesting...

So, let's play catch up, shall we?

Last time I wrote we had just done the Sereno Texas Hold'em Relay for Life.  Well, since then, we've participated in 2 more Relays that I can remember:  Drumming out Cancer in Santa Clara

 and the Cancer Avengers at Cabrillo College in Aptos.  We've also, contributed to a few more but haven't been able to participate.  The Relays are amazing triumphs of will and courage and I feel so lucky to be able to stand up and stare this cancer beast in the face and damn it all to hell....

Tracy and I go to Stanford today for his 6 week check up and as always the case;  I'm anxious and a little scared cause this time around he's lost some weight and had lots of cramping in his legs and hands.  He says he's lost the weight intentionally and I know it gives him control but I don't like it.  There I've said it...  
T in Betsy's studio 6/2013

Lots of amazing times with friends and family- dinners and game nights and a special July trip to Paso Robles for the fair and birthday celebrations that Johnny & Shar came into town for.

I've been working pretty hard and had some wonderful escrows with truly great folks.  259 Dry Creek Rd and 236 Meadow Rd. with Carly and Bruce were fun, stressful and enlightening as we evolved into friendship...  Janet & Tom found a gorgeous Bonny Doon home in the sun and 404 Arbolado Dr. in La Selva Beach closes today.  Wow!!!   Gary & Sally are in contract on a Seacliff beauty and I have a couple acres of development potential listed in Live Oak...  yahoo!

I finally sat down and vented and here's that 90 second rant that was broadcast on KUSP Aug. 14th:

The saddest point in the last few months... we lost Betsy last week.  May she rest in eternal peace

Anyway, I'm back and ready to write again.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Today is Sunday, May 19th

I've been enjoying myself thoroughly the last week or so... Living on the coast certainly has it's advantages.  Our walks are such an amazing ritual at this point and it's hard to even think about not seeing and feeling the surf each morning...even walked in the drizzle on Thurs. Speaking of which..Thurs  was a jammed packed day... Between our walk and Broker's Tour, we kept up pace to see about 25 homes..  but then, home to pick up my personal hero, Tracy, cancer survivor and take him to the Relay for Life Texas Hold 'em Tournament at our broker's home in Monte Sereno to play poker... We raised over $7000 and had a blast doing it.!!!  What a fun evening!!  So glad to give back even tho' we both lost...  I lasted through two breaks anyway...

Texas Hold'em Relay for Life 

Friday was another fabulous day where I walked, played with clay (almost done with my surfer gal) and showed a very interesting home on Moon Valley Ranch Road and then, took a trip to Tuscany..
Linda and Jim shared dinner with us and we totally enjoyed being with them!!!

Open house today at 404 Arbolado Drive in La Selva Beach!!!  Another gorgeous day at the beach!!!

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Today is May 1st

Well, I find myself awake at 3:00 in the morning so what do I do?  Update a marketing analysis for a home in Saratoga, clean up my email and watch a video online.  I'm a happy gal but I sure wish I could go back to sleep.... maybe I should try?

The days have been warm with a breeze on the coast and I'm enjoying our lives unfolding...

Yesterday was a phenomenal day!!!  T, Riley & I proceeded to the beach early... about 7:30 instead of our usual 8 AM.  The air was warm and soft, almost caressing as we followed the prancing Riley boy down towards Seascape... greeting our beach buddies, feeding treats to their doggies.  It's amazing to be able to start our day that way.

Upon our return, we stopped to say hi to our neighbor and then, were invited in to see another neighbor's home on Toledo and then, watered some potted plants at 207 Toledo ( sale closing in a couple weeks).  Delivered some mail and greeted Linda and then, finally home to coffee, protein drink and the paper on the back deck.  Imagine that?  I actually read the paper the day it was delivered!

Work beckoned and I enjoyed checking in with several clients and catching up on paperwork.  Grabbed a light lunch and off to an inspection at 84 Robak and then, to show several homes to a great Cupertino couple.

Upon my return, Tracy & Riley were outside and we decided that dinner out would be fun so, T came along when we stopped at 1220 Day Valley Trails to deliver my closing gifts.  What a wonderful gift to be a part of my clients' happiness in their new home!!!  They are positively beaming!!!  We are blessed!!

Then, we found ourselves at Cafe Sparrow enjoying a surf & turf and a risotto and a wonderful Barbera from Fiddletown Cellars.

That and the last half of NCIS and a couple more shows and sleep beckoned...

Maybe it will again?

Monday, April 29, 2013

Today is Saturday, July 28th

When you're ready to sell again,  not just list your home; consider the fact that I'll really market your home on both sides of the hill & make sure that it's open & advertised every weekend until it sells.  I advertise on Zillow, Trulia, Realtor.com, MLS Listings, YouTube & Sereno for maximum exposure in addition to print advertising in the Sentinel & the Mercury News. I just sold 200 Sand St. Rio Del Mar in 8 days, 1656 Martin Ave, the Rose Garden in 10 days, a Milpitas listing in 4 days all within the last month. Homes are selling when they're given the right advertising & outreach. I also always do a video with original jazz music.   Your home will sell given the right amount of exposure.  I'd like the chance to try.  This is my neighborhood. I know how to sell it & I'd like the opportunity to  help you get it done. We just returned from a few glorious days in Paso to celebrate my birthday & Tracy.  Our 2nd trip in 3 years. We have survived the most horrible 24 months of our lives  but T is fighting & thriving even thru all the hellacious treatment & setbacks. Our art class - playing with clay, family & friends & walks on the beach sustain us; my business keeps my brain otherwise occupied & happy & staves off senior moments of senility.  Hee hee

Monday, April 29th

I have to say this has been an unbelievable month!!!  I just vented about the ridiculous nature of things seemingly beyond our control BUT I am also very thankful for a month of fabulous sights, sounds and business.  I'm intensely happy with life as it unfolds.

I sold 444 Whispering Pines #95 and closed it within 2 weeks;  sold 279 Aptos Beach Pines and represented those same sellers when they purchased 1220 Day Valley Trails and closed contiguously ...sold 207 Toledo Drive in 10 days and it'll close in a few weeks... now representing buyers on 1213 Andrew Lane and 84 Robak Drive and having fun with my new listing at 404 Arbolado Drive in La Selva Beach...  I've been referred to several new clients and just generally very happily busy figuring out how to solve the puzzles.  Oh yah!

On top of that,  we've heard some great music this month at Kuumbwa and the Rio theatre... Pharaoh Sanders and the Ray Charles tribute band featuring Tony Lindsay of Santana fame and Spang a Lang

Tony Lindsay & me
I knew Tony when I was single cause my hair stylist dated him and we all loved to dance to his music... almost 20 years ago... it was a blast hearing him again...  gotta go dancin' again soon... and last BUT definitely not least the Blue Sky Riders with Kenny Loggins... I can't get their music out of my head!!!

We also were treated to a visit by dear Connecticut friends, Patti Mulligan Githmark and Paul and we toured Monterey with our mates.  So great to see them again!!
The Beta Phi Beta Babes did Pebble Beach...

Anne Marie, Patti & Jayne

Anne Marie, Paul, Patty, Tracy, Jayne & Lou
Amazing sighting on our Rio Del Mar beach... 3 whales!!! If I could figure out how to add a movie I'd show you but I felt sooo blessed to see the huge fins and the outline of these humungous creatures... We've sighted them twice this week including yesterday... they are so close to shore in our little piece of the world and with that I'm going to bed....

Sunday, April 28th

Here's a question I'm grappling with...  Why didn't we all choose to be politicians?  They are soo far above the rules that you and I play by.  Did you hear that our elected very quietly repealed the law that makes it illegal for them to benefit from insider trading?  If you or I used insider knowledge; we'd be prosecuted and end up in jail like Martha Stewart. How about the fact that the sequester had hampered air travel and the elected wanted to go home to their constituencies from DC and suddenly, within a week they drafted and passed legislation to get themselves home without delay.

How about the fact that my medical insurance premiums have gone up by 28% in just over a year and yet, had I been elected to federal office;  I'd have free medical for life... even if only elected to one term?  Why aren't the elected eligible for social security instead of their compensation for life with cost of living increases?  Why aren't those elected perks referred to as entitlements as well?

I am disgusted and frustrated that the media hasn't focussed on any of these issues and that we are constantly being ignored or our wishes denied.  90% of the people want gun control and the Senate can't get a bill passed.  Spineless bought and paid for politics at its best!!!  I'm sick of all of it...are you?  Now what do we do about it?