About Me

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I have spent a great deal of my life battling illness. I suffered from Crohn's Disease and eventually had abdominal surgery, thwarting the Crohn's and budding cancer cells. Since my surgery in 1995 I have been relatively free from Crohns', although I had several subsequent surgeries related to my ileostomy..When my disease was in remission, I don't think my husband realized how bad it could get, but he has stood by me. I also have suffered from various autoimmune disorders and am diagnosed with Stage IV Kidney Disease. Fortunately, I am maintaining and do not need dialysis at this point. We adopted our son and later found out he had cerebral palsy, so he became my career. Dan has had two surgeries and tons of therapy and is able to walk because of it. He is a college graduate and is employed as an Information Specialist. We are very proud of his accomplishements. I am now part of the retired generation and still getting used to the idea. I do enjoy crafting, traveling and being with family and friends. I am active in my church and feel that the hardships we endure are there to build our faith. I like to live life in the "now" as we never know how much time is left.

Friday, January 30, 2015

One Day and Wham!

My friend, Linda thought she would be coming home Friday or Saturday.  At the least, they were to move her out of ICU. 
She developed blood clots and swelling at the surgery site.  Tomorrow she is going in for more surgery to have it all cleaned up and have some additional tissue removed.
She hasn't said it, but she has to be discouraged!
I, on the other hand, had a good day.  I didn't need to take a pain pill for two days!
I ran some errands.  One was to get some pants pinned for hemming.  One pair didn't fit any longer since I have lost ten pounds!  They are going to the consignment shop.
I made Creamy Burrito Casserole for dinner which was a real hit!




  1. Brown ground meat/turkey & onion; drain.
  2. Add taco seasoning and stir in refried beans.
  3. Mix soup and sour cream in a separate bowl.
  4. Spread 1/2 sour cream mixture in the bottom of a casserole dish.
  5. Tear up 3 tortillas and spread over sour cream mixture.
  6. Put 1/2 the meat bean mixture over that.
  7. Add a layer of cheese.
  8. You could put some hot sauce on this now.
  9. Repeat the layers.
  10. Sprinkle cheese over the top and bake, uncovered, at 350°F for 20-30 minutes.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Linda's done with surgery!

Copied from my Facebook page
19 hrs ·
My bff, Linda just got out of surgery. They had to remove more lymph than expected, so good that she had it under general. They think they got it all, she did fine. no problems with her heart! Thanks be to God!
I spoke to her last night and this morning.  She feels fine!  NO pain!  They are keeping her there at St. Luke's one more day.
You may share this on your blog.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Life Goes On, Pain or No Pain

I had not taken a "bladder pill" for a week.  Oh, at times, I would get a twinge, but I let it pass.
I am praying for grace to live with this condition and all my meds, but I am impatient, especially when it was under control for such a long time!
I did take a pill last Tuesday as I was having a Stamping Party.  We made this card and little bag:

I like the big scrolled heart that pops out!
My Javacid  (see previous post)  seems to be helping.  I limit myself to two cups of caffeine a day while using that and have cut down on the decaf considerably.  I have also increased my water consumption.
Still, I am not quite up to par.  I am afraid to make love to my husband and we are lovers, not fighters!  He is so sweet and understanding.  
I am now getting monster headaches.  Yesterday I had a migraine all day and nothing helped, so I went to bed at 7pm!  Now I am awake at 4am.
Saturday we went to my hubby's oldest sister's house.  It is quite a drive, but we hadn't had any snow yet, so not a problem.  I brought a big bag of Tee-shirts that I had been saving for over 25 years!  They are all Dan's, our son.  I have been meaning to have a memory quilt made for him all these years.  Not done for graduation from high school or college and this summer he will be 30!
Jim's sister is retired and is quite an accomplished quilter, so she is making it for the cost of the materials!
Yesterday she messaged me that she decided to change the layout and needed more tee-shirts (she didn't think that she needed all of them on Saturday so took the rest of them home to be thrifted).
So, I had to choose more and box and mail them!
Today I go see the nephrologist (my kidney doctor).  He will not be happy about the new pill.  He never is and will tell me to drink more water!
I am hoping to hear from my Pastor.  He is going to see my bff, Linda, on Wednesday after her surgery.  I hope to ride with him if he doesn't have anywhere else to go.  Otherwise, will pray at home like everyone else.
Speaking of prayer....I have taken over the prayer chain at church.  It helps me to me more diligent
in my own prayers.  I have it all quite organized now, so I am happy with it.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

A Busy Pain Free Weekend!

One of my lovely blog friends contacted me about my Interstitial Cystitis.  She had very good advice for me and it is so wonderful to have someone who understands.  Her name is Laurie from I Love a Cloudy Day.  She is my new hero.  She has been through a lot worse than me, but her advice is good for me anyway.  NO CAFFEINE!  No chocolate, no spicy foods.
Now, as I told my doctor, caffeine is my "crack."  I could never imagine living without my caffeinated coffee and my Diet Pepsi, but by the grace of God, I can and will do it!  That is my first step; that, and drinking more water!
Another thing I will try is Javacid.   It is a product that neutralizes the acid in coffee.  Some even use it on their salsa!  It recommended for those with stomach and digestive sensitivities, ulcers and Gerd, but people with IC have found it works for them!  I had some samples, and had a couple of cups of the "real" coffee with the Javacid added.  I didn't have any problems. 
So far, since giving up the caffeine, I have not had to take any pain meds!
I have another new friend who is a consultant for Close to My Heart, a stamping company.  She has taught me how to use my Cricut (a printing and cutting machine)  and has helped me in organizing my craft area.
These magnetic sheets are holding my die cuts for my Big Shot (another thing that helps to cut shapes and emboss)

My stamp sets are all organized here.  I have to label the dividers yet by category.
If need be, I can clear another shelf!  It is so nice to see my stamps!
Saturday night hubby took me out to dinner.  On the suggestion of a FB friend, we drove up north to Algoma to dine at Skaliwags.  Great food, but very unorthodox!  First, we entered this dive bar (and I mean dive).  We ordered our drinks, the menu was on a blackboard (no prices...hmmmm).  When a table was ready for us, the hostess took us outside (that's right), through an alley to the backdoor of another building.  We passed through a rather crummy entryway, past the kitchen, and into a nice dining room.  Now, some people would never get past the dive bar!
The food was gourmet, but I thought rather expensive considering the facility.  No soup or salad, just the entrĂ©e.  My husband had steak and I had these yummy scallops, topping a mound of garlic mashed potatoes, sweet mashed potatoes and grits (which tasted like the potatoes to me).  The food was beautifully presented.
When we got the bill, we realized that of my husband's Old Fashions cost $6 each and of my Sundrop sodas cost $3  each which I think is rather high for a glass of soda.  I don't know if we will return or not.  The menu is heavy on seafood and not much in steaks.  (My husband is a steak eater.)  The evening was way too expensive for us.  One hates to ask how much something is, and then say, "never mind."  Still, I would say if you are near Hwy 42 in Wisconsin, to try it out for yourself.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Post Script and Prayer Request

Yesterday was a horrible day.  I hate it when I don't feel good all day.  Such a waste of time!
As I explained to someone, it is constant pain in my nether-regions (as they say in the naughty romance novels!)
I am living on the expensive purple pills.  Hubby is afraid that I will build up a tolerance to them.
There is no cure.  What else can I do?  I sit on the heating pad.
Please pray that this flare-up passes soon!  I could go months and even years without a flare-up.
I don't want to live like this.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

So Thankful!

I went to the urologist yesterday.  My "sample" was a lovely light green color, but I passed the urine test!  I had some inflammation. 
The doctor doesn't need to hear from me unless I am passing blood...so no procedures for me!  Phew!
He said as long as my expensive pills help to alleviate the symptoms, I can continue to take those as needed.  It is still less expensive than a trip to the ER! 
There is no cure, just treatment for Interstitial Cystitis (IC).  I do have to cut down on my caffeine.  I told him I am totally addicted to coffee and Pepsi, but I have been cutting down, and will continue.
We went to Culver's after picking our son up from work.  (It was a long day).  I got the Reuben which I highly recommend!
My friend, Penny has been helping me get my craft area organized.
This is my Clip it Up.  Everything that can be clipped, goes here:
wrapped floss or ribbons, gold and silver images, some of this and that.
I look to my Clip it Up for my favorites.
In my storage tower, I keep my un-mounted stamps.
I have to label the drawers as I have them categorized.
My Washi Tape area.  I got a baby bottle drying rack for my Washi Tape.

This is ONE of my stamp pad organizers!

I have all my Stampin Up stamp sets here and categorized.  I have to label the divider tabs.

I have to start labeling everything!  It is just so nice to be able to find what I have!

Monday, January 12, 2015

Why I Have Been MIA

This week we were all just trying to stay warm!  It has been below zero temps this week.  Yesterday, it felt "balmy."  I think it was in the teens.  I hate it when it is so cold that you can't feel your face!
I didn't want to go out, to the Red Hat meeting, but my son said, "Mom, it's going to be cold in Wisconsin for the next three months!  You HAVE to go out!"  So, I did, and we all had a good time!
I have been suffering off and on from Interstitial Cystitis since before New Year's.  It is also known as bladder pain syndrome and is a problem that causes pain in the bladder or pelvis.  It also causes an urgent and frequent need to urinate.  When I go, my bladder starts to spasm.  I am on medication for this disease, but apparently it's not enough.  In the past the spasms were so bad that I would urinate and pass blood clots.  I just get spasms and have a difficult time urinating.  I take another pill, a stronger version of Pyridium (the stuff that makes your pee orange).  This pill also contains pain medication in it and causes my pee to turn into a lovely blue-green color!  It helps, but I doubt that the doctor wants me to take these all the time.  I also drink a lot of water and sit on a heating pad.
Today I go see the urologist.  I am afraid that he is going to want to do a procedure.  One is a cystoscopy and that is done under anesthesia.  The doctor inserts a lighted tube, fills the bladder with gas to get a better look, and takes a cell smear.  The other procedure is bladder instillation where the doctor inserts a catheter and "washes" the bladder with a medication which has to be held in there for 15 minutes.  They do this over a series of weeks!  All I know, is I have to get this under control!
Lately I have made contact with old high school alum on Facebook.  It is rather interesting to see where life took them!
My project/day went by the wayside, but I have been feeling a bit more ambitious on my good days.
I have been cooking more and cleaning more and becoming a regular Suzie Homemaker!  Yesterday I cooked up a big kettle of hamburger vegetable soup!  (I forgot to take a picture).  I realize I cook like my mom with a little bit of this, and a little bit of that!
I have a friend who loves to organize.  She is helping me to organize my craft area so I will be able to find everything, and like being down there.  We got a good start and now I can find all my stamp sets and card kits!  When it is done, I will take a photo.
I am still going to volunteer for The Salvation Army in their office and also once a month at The Senior Center.  I have also taken charge of the prayer chain at church!

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Happy New Year!

Many of the bloggers have done a year in review.  I didn't do that.  I don't have many photos to share for 2014.
I am putting that year behind me and focusing on 2015!  I am challenging myself to celebrate and scrapbook something for each month of the year.
I also am going to get one oddball job done every day.  Today was the silverware drawer!  There was more stuff in there that we will never use!
I am hoping we go to the show today and see the latest Hobbit movie since we have seen all the others. 
God Bless and Happy New Year!