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day in the life

Highlighting the everyday life of a couple living well with a slow-growing cancer. Life isn’t always easy, and there will certainly be sorrows and losses along the way. But being alive is good. It is very good.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Reflections on a rainy day

It’s a Winnie-the-Pooh sort of day. Blustery. Raindrops clinging to windows. Leaves lying damp on the sidewalk. The fair-haired tree across the street going bald on top.


This is my absolute favorite time of the year. Golden autumn, turning into chilly autumn, turning into falling snowflakes and white-covered Cascade peaks. And in the middle of all this outdoor beauty there is Thanksgiving, Christmas, a New Year.

It has also been the season of saying a long, slow, sweet good-by to Hubby. Yesterday was a bit frightening for me. Not only did he sleep the entire day and eat very little, but he was also confused. The sleeping, the not-eating I can handle; the confusion is frightening.

But today, Hubby is awake more, eating a bit more, and most importantly, no confusion. Ah, priceless, hopeful gift.

Meanwhile, our front porch is seeing quite a bit of activity. The Porch Fairy made a hit again. As did the Knitting Fairy.

I didn’t even know there was a Knitting Fairy, but that’s how she signed the card. And I love that she left rich autumn colors on our front porch.


The card was signed: Much love from the Knitting Fairy.


The beginnings of fingerless gloves

There was also an angel on our porch. A hand-crafted angel pin. As a reminder that you are loved and being watched over, read the card.

Cancer is something we would never wish on anyone. And yet, our lives are richer for it.

Thank you, Porch Fairy, Knitting Fairy (Lizzi Katz is the #1 suspect) and June Bug. You are but three of our life-enrichers.


Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Slow leaks

The Porch Fairy struck again. At 8:00am. Chai tea, pumpkin bread and a Lady Bug. A wind-up Lady Bug boogying across Hubby’s bedside table. Left on the front porch.


And then again at noon, another Porch Fairy hit. Fried rice, Egg Drop Soup, pumpkin scones and more tea.

Meanwhile, the call went out this morning on Facebook: We have a tire with a slow leak. Wondering if anyone had some spare time to take it in for repair. (Daughter Summer surely is proud of me for asking for help.)

By 2:30 this afternoon, our vehicle had been picked up and safely returned with a repaired tire.

And a rather handsome young man behind the wheel.


A slow leak of kindness has been seeping through our lives, and I can’t seem to keep up with the thank-you notes.

Our hearts are full of gratitude for all the goodness that has come of this devastating disease. This cancer.

Jonathan and Muna, you rocked the tire repair today.

And Porch Fairy, your note about the wind-up Lady Bug being a Duck because it’s noisy and has wings? You rock the creative porch drop-offs, but not so much the entomology.


Sunday, October 19, 2014

Counting blessings. Still.

A thanksgiving list rolls through my head. Often. Like when I make a prescription pick-up. Thankful that the car starts. Every time.

Thankful for the freedom to move about town, the hospice team, the availability of meds, the pharmacy that filled the script ... you get the idea.

Despite hard things, there’s still so much to be grateful for (for which to be grateful?).

1. Friends who stopped by yesterday for a visit and re-planted our birdfeeder so Hubby could see the activity from his hospital bed.

2. The Porch Fairy’s drive-by this morning.


3. Dark chocolate—a.k.a. Vitamin C—and coasters in a beautiful purple gift bag reminding us that yes, life is a special occasion.

4. A fleecy, Ducky pillow case fur Hubby (being an OSU grad, the gift-giver insisted these were Beavers, but she’s delusional).


Go, Ducks!

5. Chai tea. Because one can never be too thankful for Chai tea.

6. Fall colors brought indoors.


7. A generous package in yesterday’s mail that included the smell of Yuletide Cinnamon candles—it’s never too early to light a Christmas candle—and the reminder that, indeed, all is well with our souls.


8. The anticipation of Denver beating San Francisco later today.

9. The incredibly thoughtful, creative, helping-us-fight-cancer, kind, mischievous, would-do-anything-for-us people in our lives.

10. One more day with Hubby; one more day in which he is able to propel himself out of bed on his own steam.

Counting blessings. Still. Always.


Thursday, October 16, 2014


An infuser showed up. With essential oils. Our home currently smells citrus-spicy. Yum. Thank you, Sandy.


And this on our front porch early this morning. Susan, your name is all over this Chai tea.


And then a book showed up. A hand-crafted gift filled with memories of adventures with our cancer-kicking community in these incredible Cascade Mountains.


Thank you, Kathy & Mike. Such a thoughtful gift.

Hubby and I are surrounded by some of the most amazing people on the planet.

Side note: Speaking of Hubby and me, a hospital bed selfie.


If he looks a bit distracted, it’s because I’m competing with baseball play-offs. And the Patriots vs. the Jets. All at the same time.

Thanks, Gary and Carolyn ... I think.


Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Feeding us

I’ve been working full-time from home these past two days. And I’ve loved every drive-by.

Jessica and Alycia with mango smoothies.


Lizzi with a banana shake for Hubby (dark chocolate for me, which Hubby tried to steal as soon as Lizzi left).



This e-mail from Susan: May I drop off a Chai tea at a specific time by your front door and not knock to disturb Gary if I get there right on time so that you could just retrieve it?

No, you may not drop and run. I want a hug. Besides, isn’t that a run-on sentence?

This text from Michelle: Hiya – can I drop off a little something sweet to yous this early afternoon?


Ida’s Cupcakes (only the best in town)

No shortage of lovely visitors. Including Nurse Melinda who was here once yesterday and twice today.

Oh, and the guy from Norco who disassembled Hubby’s hospital bed and reassembled it in the living room. And then came back today and brought a bedside table.

Just don’t tell my boss how many visitors we’ve had. She’ll think I’m not working.

And then there’s this question: Why is everyone trying to feed us?


Monday, October 13, 2014

Still looking for the perfect beverage

Speaking of grocery store runs—five in two days, but who’s counting—I won’t bore you with another top-shelf-of-the-fridge photo.


Taste testing - peach, cherry, pear

But suffice it to say that Looza Peach Juice Drink, 365 Black Cherry Juice and Knudsen Organic Pear Juice are now crowded in with all the other unfinished beverages.


Saturday, October 11, 2014

Thirsty, anyone?

Hubby hasnt had much of an appetite this past week. And when he does make an attempt to eata couple bites here and therefood doesnt taste good.  

Same with thirst. Hes just sipping at stuff. You know what might be good, he says. And off to the grocery store I run.

The beverage aisle and I have become intimately acquainted.


Grape juice and orange juice. Two flavors of sparkling cider. Four different kinds of fruit-infused waters. Dr. Pepper and 7-Up. Chocolate milk. Crystal Geyser Juice Squeeze, which has always been Hubbys favorite fruity beverage.

Half-hearted sips. But nothing that excites his taste buds.

And then just now Hubby says, You know what sounds good? A Chai tea.

Seriously? Youre not messing with me? Ill be right back.


You can see why were soul mates. This is a man still winning my heart. Daily.


Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Feeling loved

We got home from SunRiver to find a moose on our front porch.

Perhaps I should explain. A friend recently visited her old stomping grounds. She posted: Trying to figure out how to bring some Alaska to you and hubby. Any requests?

Hubby asked for Baked Alaska, and I requested a live baby moose. A moosling. Were both easy to please.

Apparently something got lost in the translation. Because we found this hand-crafted, moose-shaped, metal garden ornament planted in a rather large and beautiful fall bouquet. On our front porch. (If I cant have a live moose, this is definitely the next best thing.)


That same day in the mail, an unexpected check from friends in California, which will be put toward more memory-making. While theres still time.

This afternoon, a text message: You up for a cup of Chai tea? When have I ever not been up for Chai?

And so, a visit from local friends bearing gifts.


And then this evening, another Chai tea visit with friends passing through on their way from Southern Oregon to Boise.


Someone named Rabindranath Tagore said, I slept and dreamt life was joy; I awoke and saw life was service; I acted and, behold, service was joy.

Why does it seem that we are being served more than we are serving? I suppose my focus of service at the moment is caregiving for Hubby. And of course my day job at the cancer center.

Im guessing God is producing humility in me by allowing us to be in a place that involves more receiving and not so much serving. Which isnt necessarily a comfortable place to be.

The card that came with the check from California reads like this: Always always always always remember you are loved.

Feeling loved as we step out into this unknown next stretch of the cancer journey.

Thank you, Kattaryna and Sam. Mike and Carol. Tom and Fran. Harry and Lori. Because you are the most recent in a long line of family and friends who have reminded us that were not traveling this way alone, that we are loved.


Sunday, October 5, 2014

A wild life

We persuaded Hubby to come with us for a drive into the Cascades. And even though he didnt feel like walking to the lake viewpoints from the parking areas, still, he was out and about, enjoying mountain sunshine and fresh air.

First stop: Sparks Lake where the chipmunks got equal photo  coverage (actually, probably a little more photo coverage)...


... than the humans.


And then a stop at Todd Lake to introduce our kids to more of the locals.


When we were growing up together as a married couple, Hubbys job programming large IBM computers required he work in cities and larger towns. We intentionally chose to live in the beautiful Pacific Northwest, and Hubby chose to commute a little so we could bring up our kids in smaller towns and semi-rural areas.

From time to time weve wondered out loud what we did wrong because our children love big cities and crazy traffic and a faster pace of life. A friend, upon hearing wed raised them in small towns, said, Well, thats what you did wrong.

Ill say this about having city kids, though. Its easy to keep them amused when they come to visit. We simply introduce them to the local wildlife.

Side note: Son Jeremy is the breakfast-maker in the family. Plates of eggs topped with avocado; red onion; peperoncini; red, orange and yellow peppers; green olives; garbanzo beans. Oh, and dont forget the hot sauce.


Or oatmeal with fresh-ground peanut butter, walnuts, raisins, dried cherries, coconut, dates, bananas and a bit of honey.


Much like when our daughter was visiting, weve been eating like royalty.


Friday, October 3, 2014

SunRiver all over again

You can never get too much of SunRiver. Were back at one of our favorite places, a short distance from home in a wooded mountain resort village. This time, celebrating a visit from Son Jeremy and DIL Denise.

Deer in the yard. As with all our SunRiver stay-cations.


A puzzle, courtesy of Jeremy and Denise, spread out before a welcoming fire.


J&D cooking dinner. Well, Denise cooking. Jeremy supervising. Yum homemade chili and cornbread.


Enjoying the unlighting of the dayor better known as dusk.


Dusk, Denise's favorite time of the day

(Dusk and dawnthe changing of the lighthappen to be my two favorite times. Denise said she saw the dawn once and it was overrated.)

Our new best friend, Nurse Melinda, was here yesterday to test Hubbys blood. She ordered lymphedema massageHubbys legs and feet sort of resemble tree trunksand now, in the comfort of our own home, Hubby will receive regular leg massage. Imagine that.

This little vacation cabin comes with bikes, but Hubby probably wont be climbing up on a bike this weekend. Hes slowed down these past couple weeks. This could be because the stent/neph tube issue still isnt resolved. My theory is that as soon as he can get the stents removed, hell bounce back. Hubby isnt buying this theory.

Either way, whether this is a fixable issue, or the ongoing march of cancer, there is today. There is family time in a cabin in the woods. A fire burning. A puzzle waiting to be put together. Denise has offered to cook dinner again this evening. Andwith one win for Team G&M and one for Team J&Dthere is a championship game of Hand and Foot to be played tonight.

All is peaceful and well in our world. 


Thursday, October 2, 2014

Photo shoot

Look who showed up at our house this week. Hubbys nephew Stan, his wife Kris and two of our great-nieces (grandnieces?). Lauren and Lexie. Both blonde. In the truest sense of the word, if you catch my drift.

The entertainment - Kris, Lexie, Lauren, Stan

Turns out, they were not only here for a family visit. And not just for a photo shoot (Kris had contacted us earlier, offering to do our photos). But also served as our entertainment.

Ive always wanted a photo of Hubby and me. Something a little nicer than the selfies weve taken from the tops of mountains, dressed in layers and hiking boots.

We originally planned to shoot at Shevlin Park. Fall colors. Tall evergreens. Covered bridge. Aspen grove near a tumbling creek. 

But Hubby was feeling pretty punk. And so Kris quietly borrowed some pieces scattered throughout our home and ingeniously set up outdoors.

All Hubby had to do was take a seat, and in ten minutes we were finished. And you wouldnt know she was shooting on a sidewalk. On a busy side street.

Sis-in-law Cheryl wrote: You guys even make living on the street look like fun.


Hubby rarely smiles big. Its usually just a cute grin.

But Lexieyou remember the blonde great-niecewas dancing beyond the photographers back. Twirling like a ballerina, her long hair flying. Shes the reason we were laughing.

Priceless gifts, this visit from family, these photos, a days worth of entertainment. Thanks, Stan, Kris, Lauren and Lexie Lou.


Friday, September 26, 2014

Ready for some football

We havent had a television in maybe six years. I think it was because our set quit working, and we didnt have time to watch TV, then they came out with the new digital stuff, and well ... we just never got around to getting another TV.

But while we were in SunRiver last weekend, Hubby watched quite a bit of college and pro ball, and it seemed that he stayed awake more. So I talked him into getting cable for football season.

I emailed some friends who had offered once to loan us a spare television. Wondering if their offer was still good.

They called back. “This is going to sound awkward, but in lieu of flowers, wed like to pay for the cable during football season.

Hubby and I both got a little misty-eyed over this incredibly thoughtful gesture. Instead of buying flowers after Hubbys gone, they want to do something that would bring enjoyment while hes still here. 

Meanwhile, we received an unexpected check in the mail, so we bought a flat-screen TV. The cable guy showed up last evening, and Hubby is now in business.



Are you ready for some football?!


Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Kid in a candy store

Humor me one last birthdayversary post.

Before we left home for this four-day weekend in the woodswhich ends today, sadly—a package arrived in the mail.

Hubby wore the cutest grin as he unwrapped the box. And then unwrapped the individual items inside.


Kid in a candy store. Literally.

A mini-balloon. Izze beverages. Champagne glasses. Mixed nuts. Playing cards. Candy. Gum. DVDs. Microwave popcorn. A You make me happy sign. Green bills with instructions to go out to dinner ... or order in.

The package came from one of Hubbys nieces. Brittany. One of several beautiful young women who love their uncle. Despite the fact that he teased them all mercilessly as they were growing up. Or maybe because of it.

Notice the dark green card with a white coffee cup in the foreground. It mysteriously disappeared from the collection of gifts shortly after the box was opened.

I’m pretty sure its in a safe place.


Monday, September 22, 2014

Actual birthday

You may remember that Hubby insists on getting to eat whatever he wants on his birthday. A break from my enforced healthful eating these past ten years.

This year, he thought it would be fun to barbecue burgers. Real burgers. Not turkey burgers.

I made oven fries, and cut up a salad and some cantaloupe. And of course there was the infamous German Chocolate Cake.

The problem with all that? Hubbys been eating whatever he wants for the past couple months, so breaking the rules isnt quite as exciting as it used to be.

Were enjoying our last full day at this vacation cabin. We just got back from a bike ride. I let Hubby set the pace and go the distance he wanted to go. From Harpers Bridge out to the marina. He probably rode too far. But it was what he wanted to do.

Horses grazing along the trail. Purple mountains majestic in the background.


River traffic with just a hint of fall foliage.


A coyote on the alert, sharing the field with a four-legged beauty.


When we got back to the cabin, Hubby took his second nap at the kitchen table. A newly-discovered sleep position that relieves pressure off his back and kidneys.


As I write this, he’s dozing on the couch next to me. His third nap of the day. And it wont be his last.

I brought homework with me this weekend. The hospice social worker handed me a booklet on death and dying. This would be good to read, shed said.

Here’s what it says about sleeping: Interestingly, the normal sleeping pattern during the dying process is virtually identical to the normal sleeping pattern of newborns: off and on around the clock.

This describes Hubbys sleeping pattern. To a tee. But he isnt anywhere near the place described in the booklet. His exhaustion and drowsiness come from cancer-related pain and meds.

These frequent naps arent because he only has weeks left to live. They’re because he got out today and rode several miles on a bike. Because hes still enjoying life and living it as full out as possible.

I love this time of year. I love the colors, the cooler temperatures, new beginnings as in school days and football season. I love Thanksgiving, the promise of snow, and the thought of winter holidays just around the corner.

One more birthday, one more shared anniversary. Priceless gifts, these. Because Hubby wasnt suppose to live this long.

Happy first day of autumn. Happy birthday. And happy anniversary, my love.


Sunday, September 21, 2014

German Chocolate Cake

When Daughter Summer and Oldest Granddaughter Lilly were visiting in June, Hubby requested nagged, harassed, harangued the girls to bake a German Chocolate Cake. (Were talking daily harassment here.)

The last from-scratch GCC I baked was ten years ago. Pre-cancer days. (Well actually, I experimented once with whole wheat pastry flour and Fruit Sweet and a healthy butter substitute. I can hear Hubbys brothers now: You did what to German Chocolate Cake?!)

And so, I brought ingredients and round cake pans to this vacation rental. White flour. White sugar. Real butter.


And ingredients for homemade coconut pecan frosting. Because German Chocolate Cake isnt GCC without coconut pecan frosting.


Even though Hubbys birthday isnt until tomorrow, I thought we should get started early. Since its going to take us a while to eat the whole thing.

So last evening, while college football played itself out on the large screen, I baked a German Chocolate Cake.


The only problem was, we had eaten a late lunch (I brought plenty of food for the weekend, but Hubby showed me a new recipe that looked good, so guess who dropped what she was doing, made a trip to the local grocer, and baked a Taco Casserole).

Which means we werent hungry for dinner until about 8:00 last night. And neither of us wanted to stay up until midnight to be hungry enough for cake.

Confession: One of us may have had a piece of German Chocolate Cake for breakfast.



Saturday, September 20, 2014

Celebrating milestones

We didnt quite make it to Alaska to celebrate our anniversary and Hubbys birthday a long story that has to do with ureteral stents.

But we are celebrating in SunRiver. Where weve rented a vacation cabin with sloping rooflines and wood-lined ceilings and nothing but trees out the front wall of windows. 


Birdhouse on the back deck

And where I stayed in pajamas until 10:38 this morning. First sign that it was going to be a great day.



By late morning, we were cycling near the river. Hubby leading the way. Taking us further down the paved path than I thought he would. Hoo-ray for some energy restored.



Just about your perfect day. And its not even over.

If Hubby can figure out the three remotes and how theyre related to each other, then weve got Oregon Ducks to watch. If this cabin has access to the right channel. If Hubby can figure out the remotes.



And this is only the first day of a four-day weekend. Love long weekends with Hubby. In a cabin. Under impossibly tall trees. With a river flowing nearby.


Monday, September 15, 2014

New recipes

Hubby *liked* a recipe page, and now full-color food pictures scroll across his Facebook page. Daily.

Hmmm, that looks good, hell say, as he hits the print button, where it travels wirelessly, where I pick it up off the printer, shop and cook. All from the comfort of his chair. He doesnt have to move a muscle until he hears, Dinners ready. 

Crab-stuffed mushrooms. Broccoli Cheese Bites. Easy Cupcake Lasagna. Scalloped Potato Gratin. These are the things that sound good to Hubby.

And at this point in the journey, anything that sounds good is fair game. Although I did veto the Baked Cheddar Chicken because it called for chicken rolled in crushed Cheese Puffs. Cheese Puffs? I dont think so.

Yesterday I made Chicken Parmigiana. Chicken breasts pounded thin, slathered in flour, dipped in egg, coated with panko bread crumbs, cooked two minutes on both sides in hot olive oil, layered with pasta sauce and mozzarella cheese, and then baked for seven minutes. Served over fettuccini.


Chicken Parmigiana

Sometimes Hubby has some pretty good ideas.


Friday, September 12, 2014

More pep

When we moved into this tiny duplex, Hubby attached a rubber ball to a rope and hung it from the garage ceiling. To mark the place where we should stop.


Even with the hanging rubber ball, Hubbys standard greeting usually includes directing my landing into the garage. Much like those guys on the tarmac with the oversized headsets that motion the airplanes to their berths. (Just in case Im not smart enough to stop when the windshield hits the rubber ball.)

Lately, though, Hubby hasnt felt like directing much of anything. I hate to admit this, but Ive missed his *back-seat driving.*

Which brings us to yesterday. Yesterday, wearing his cute, mischievous grin, Hubby heard the garage door open and came to greet me, hand signals guiding me to the berth.

And then he helped me wrestle a mattress and box springs out of the guest room to make room for a hospital bed.

And then early this morning I hear the vacuum cleaner running. The patient is vacuuming the guest room in preparation for the delivery of his own hospital bed. What is wrong with this picture?

So I say, if he can do my job of vacuuming, then I can do his job of trying out the new hospital bed.


Settling in with books, knitting and hot honeyed tea

My heart is full of gladness that Hubby has a bit more energy, and that maybe an adjustable hospital bed will provide a better night’s sleep for him.

That is, if he can drag me out of my new favorite comfy spot.


Friday, September 5, 2014

One of my mothers

You already know I have fabulous co-workers, particularly the three lovely young women with whom I share an office.

Two of them—Jessica and Alycia—found me in a less-traveled waiting area of the hospital on Wednesday. Hubby was having an outpatient procedure.

The first thing Jessica asked was, “Did you eat today?” As if its any of her business.

She went back to the hospital café and purchased a protein-infused fruit smoothie. Mango.


Jessica with mango

Jessica. One of three mothers in my office. All around the age of my daughter.

Hubby and I are surrounded by so many incredible people, and held by so many prayers.

For which we are exceedingly grateful. For the rest of our lives.


Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Thoughts from a hospital waiting area

Im writing this from a darkened hospital pod, Hubby dozing nearby under a warm blanket prepped for outpatient surgery.

I’m tired. And I suppose I shouldn’t write when I’m tired. But there are thoughts tumbling around in my head waiting to get organized.

Once upon a time, Hubby and I were panel guests, along with a doctor, administrator and social worker, at a hospice care conference. I remember expressing my concern about knowing when hospice should get involved. Wouldn’t it be nice if palliative and hospice care were introduced as part of the overall cancer team early on so the caregiver doesn’t have to make the decision about when and if to call in reinforcements?

As it turns out, getting hospice involved was as simple as the oncologist’s referral. Up to this point, he said to us on Tuesday, all the care has been focused on the patient. But who’s taking care of her? He pointed toward me. Hospice will help take care of the caregiver, too.” My eyes teared up. 

Its a good idea to get them involved early, he said. “Instead of waiting for a crisis, he said.

I’m a planner by nature. I want a general idea of where we’ll spend Thanksgiving this year. And Christmas. I want to know if its wise to book an Alaskan cruise for our anniversary later this month.


Apparently there’s quite a bit hospice can do for the terminal patient and his/her family. Social work. Paperwork. Helping access at-home medical supplies. Even assist with certain aspects of an Alaskan cruise.

Getting hospice involved doesn’t mean Hubby’s moving into Hospice House to die. It means more members of a care team dedicated to Hubby’s health and welfare.

And apparently to my health and welfare. Which is a comforting thought. Because all this is overwhelming at times. And I’m exhausted.

Thoughts from a hospital waiting area.


September 2014

Ready for some football

Kid in a candy store

Actual birthday

German Chocolate Cake

Celebrating milestones

New recipes

More pep

One of my mothers

Thoughts from a hospital

August 2014

Down a lazy river


Siblings retreat

Creamed tuna on toast? Really?

Creating the life you want

Johnson women unite

Every sandwich

Cancer camp

Frequent flyer


July 2014

Short, but sweet

Walking Hubby

This cancer community

Return to the real world

Rah-rahs in town

Counting gifts


June 2014

Japanese daughter

Whos counting

Overwhelming evidence

Guest blogger: Lilly

True loves kiss

Father’s Day fun

Stuffed shells

About town

Dinner guests

Minutes ticking away

Move over, Walter Mitty

Heaven Can Wait for sure

May 2014

Survival classes

Slinging ink

Theory on hospital stays

Baseball and BBQ

This is my job

Thoughts on this date night

Cranberry peonies

This Mothers Day

We will remember

Unwanted news

Celebrating Matt

Me without you

April 2014

One sick puppy


Invisible well wishes

Easter color

Walking 4 Wellness - part 6

For the birds

Wilderness therapy

And we believed her

Clinical trial round three

The home crowd

Beautiful tree

Best Bran Muffin recipe

Best April Fools joke

March 2014

 Thats just swell

Welcome back celebration

Succinct conversational skills

Walking for Wellness

First clinical trial treatment

Popcorn Lovers Day

Pacific Ocean ambience

Clinical trial prep

In the eyes of the beholder

February 2014

Green scrubs

Hometown tourists

Not exactly as planned

Lost and found

Get outdoors

Early Valentines Day gift

Popcorn stitch

January 2014

Three-part date

Weekend forecast

Winters art

Spa Chemo day

Seeing beauty

Pilot Butte challenge

Award rescinded

Ambition restored

Annual award

Meet the team

Must be present to win

December 2013

New Year's Eve news

Thoughts on gift receiving

Secret cure-all

Guest blog by Hubby

Non-compliant patient

Caught. Red-handed.


November 2013

A little trim

Giving thanks

A few of my favorite things

First in a series


The years are short


Cabin in the woods

October 2013

Leaving on a jet plane


Knitting season

Pumpkin season

Things that matter

Fallin' and flying'

September 2013

Return to civilization

Another day in paradise

Happy birthday and anniversary

Love of barns

Leaving Wyoming

The Tour Guide

This nice big thing

Celebrating a lot of stuff

Fishing expedition

August 2013

Worst fears multiplied

This Friday night date

Mountains to climb

Hiking & oncology news

Out on the range

Cancer camp


July 2013

The boy who asks questions

Ten-year-old in tow


A happy birthday

Music by the river

Mondays off

June 2013

Splash for Pink

Kids at Disney World

Male designed

Happy Father's Day

Pacific Coast thoughts

On track

May 2013

Aware. Appreciative.

MS Office 2010

Family get-togethers

It's just a number

Last trek, part two

Hardy gardeners

Mother's Day

Crunchy, sweet and savory

That time of year

April 2013

Swimming lessons

Getting off the ground

Chunk of asphalt

Stress-free zone

Two Portlands - part 2

This Boston Marathon

Earlier than the TSA

Shopping woes

March 2013

Half birthday ... again

Last trek

With each passing year

Keep the old

Tech nerd

Not the hardest thing

How hard can it be?

Just what the doc ordered

Two Portlands

Mini family reunion

February 2013

Shout out


There is today

Doing it up right

Happy Valentine's Day

Speaking of beans

Snow angel

Simple winter fare

Moving west

January 2013

Flat Stanley on snow-shoes

Water colors

Happy chatter

Flat Stanley visits again

Extended hope

Take that, cancer


The commonplace

Bringing in the New Year

December 2012

Making investments

Winter wonderland

Random acts of kindness

Gift giving

The good, the bad and the ugly

Peace on earth

Cancer Club

Mission accomplished


Fantasy football

November 2012

Those darn numbers

Dreaming of a white Christmas

Back to reality

Favorite things, part IV

Complaint department

Even more favorite things

More favorite things

Favorite things

October 2012

Happy Halloween

Baking weather

Graduation day

First snow

Swans in pairs

A great fall

Date night(s)


Country girl

Tis the season

September 2012

Back in the groove

Last hurrah

Teton hiking

Wow, Yellowstone

Reconnaissance in Jackson

Barn sightings

The power of tenacity

Winnie the Pooh wisdom

Long-time survivor

Perfect marriage

August 2012

Five dollar bill

Out in public

Guest blogger, Steffany

Think outside

Survivor camp

Camp this weekend

Living in a wonderland

Sacred space

High country

July 2012

High country

Simple cooking

Locks of Love


Average, ordinary weekend

Close of birthday week

Day before

Get outdoors

Human beans

Mission: Accomplished

Night sky display

Journey with a mission

June 2012

Aint no sunshine

Favorite thing

In our possession

Over the hills

Camp Sherman on Father’s Day

In search of wildflowers

Building a cancer center

Southwestern surprises

Irrational fears

Reason to celebrate


The Space Noodle

May 2012


Hiking posse

Powered by optimism

Mothers Day weekend

Heart tug moment

Vermont hospitality

Happiest place on earth


Unlikely source

Baby geese season

April 2012

Not found out west

The rules

Guess what state were in

New Englanders

Jersey weekend


Easter blessings


Bean soup day

March 2012

Fashion statement

Sharing the experience

Second day of spring

Half-broke horses

Simple pleasures are the best

Best to live your own life

Words With Friends

February 2012

Got your back

The entire snow-shoe team

Grand Canyon

Perfect day

Arizona in February


Super Bowl Sunday

Favorite audience

January 2012

Something in common

Some system

In such a community

Coming home

Headed for OHSU

Checklist for the coast

Welcoming Twenty-Twelve

December 2011

Snow in town

Filling Christmas weekend


Coolest date night ever

Dressed in pink

Butternut squash day

Making connections

Painted hills

November 2011

Beauty from junk

Taking nothing for granted

Grateful for - part 4

Grateful for - part 3

The child in all of us

Shepherd's House

Grateful for - part 2

Marathon epidemic


Grateful for - part 1

October 2011

My orthidontical twin

Last wilderness hike?

The view from 7,800 feet

Colonoscopies and fall colors

Welcome back

To make a life count

On our way to the Poconos

The Parents

Autumn day in the city

A few numbers

September 2011

Country girl signing off

Off the grid

What are sisters for?!

Try something new

For a limited time only

On the NCI web site

August 2011

I dont make this stuff up



A lifetime

Club membership


Date night can’t get much better

July 2010

Beauty in the high desert

Another shot at life

Happy Hour

Almost perfect

Enjoying the journey

Birthday week kick-off

Ive become my mother

Bobby McFerrin + OBF

50 things to do Part II

June 2010

Like what you do

Colorado wildlife

Life is good wisdom

Sad day

Rocky Mountain high

Cowboy sing-along

My kind of town

Please dont feed the bears

Naming buildings

Low expectations

Heaven Can Wait

Because nice matters

May 2010

April 2010

March 2010

February 2010

January 2010

December 2009

November 2009

October 2009

September 2009

August 2009

July 2009

June 2009

May 2009

April 2009

March 2009

February 2009

January 2009

December 2008

November 2008

October 2008

September 2008

August 2008

July 2008

June 2008

May 2008

April 2008




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