Day one

Welcome to and Holidailies 2014.  I have done this every year, some years doing fabulously, others (2010, I’m looking at you) doing very little.

First, a quick introduction even though most people who wander here are long term Holidailies readers.  I’m Suzy. 39 and rapidly approaching 40, although much happier about the impending 40 than I was turning 30.

My husband is Tony, we’ve been together 18 years, married 16 of those. He is my rock. We have no children of our own, but have 13 nieces and nephews, plus several other children that we consider family.

I’m a freelance writer and reporter. My main work is writing for the local weekly newspaper. The focus of my work for them is local government and politics. Basically, I spent a lot of time writing about meetings. However, I absolutely love it and wouldn’t change it for the world,.
As of today, December 1, I am six years out from a nephrectomy. In 2008 I was diagnosed with renal cell carcinoma-clear type. Stage 1B, grade 2. Basically, I had a pretty good size tumor (just 1/10 of a centimeter from stage 2) that was completely encapsulated in my right kidney. It, and the kidney, were removed at MCV in Richmond, VA, by Dr Guruli and a student, Dr. Worthington.

While, I am not in a state of “no evidence of disease” (as there is no cure for RCC, you just get a NED state) as I have things in my lungs of unknown origin. They could be metastatic disease, but have been stable for a year. We watch, and wait, as there is limited systematic treatment of RCC. (no traditional chemo, but other drugs that may slow growth.)

As you can see I abuse commas and parentheses.

I am also disabled. I have had bone and muscle issues since birth that we didn’t find out about until I was an adult. I have degenerative disc disease, also. Then, the cancer surgery brought on severe lymphedema in my right leg.

Prior to my most recent debacle, I used a cane or wheelchair depending on the day. It slowed me down and made working difficult. Then, I fell and broke my heel and ruptured my Achilles’ Tendon in August. I had to have surgery for it, spending much of August, all of September, and part of October in the hospital, then in a nursing home for rehabilitation.

During all of that I started a Go Fund Me page to help purchase a mobility scooter and a lymphedema pump. The scooter was funded, and purchased, and we are still raising funds for the pump. (you can go here if you wish to donate, or share the link.)

Again, welcome to Holidailies 2014!














2014 has been a year

September 1 and the first entry for the year. I’ll make it quick as there is so much more to come.

Right now, I am sitting in Heritage Hall nursing home due to injuring myself (at a restaurant, while walking in) on August 4th. I am supposed to be getting much physical therapy. If much means 45 minutes in five days, which is what I was getting in ONE day at the hospital.

I have an avulsion fracture of my heel and a rupture Achilles’ tendon with the subsequent surgery. Healing from that is a pain, but I’m making it. It is everything around it that is difficult.

I am completely non-weight bearing. I live in a cottage. One that is not accessible. Therefore, I cannot go home until I can get around on my walker and hopping on the non-injured leg.


The injured one is my good leg. You know the one without lymphedema? The one that has all the strength? Yeah, that one.

For now, I leave you with today’s Facebook post (facebook eats all my posts that should go here, but I promise to get better about that!)

know I am whining about myself a lot. This is hard, this sucks, if I don’t get it out by writing it, I will lose it.

One thing I keep thinking about it we warehouse our elderly sick folks like this. I can complain. I have a husband who can bring me food that is edible. (I never did figure out what that one thing was on the plate last night.)

These folks can’t. The lack of good, decent food maybe a good reason some of them are doing so poorly. I have yet to see a fresh vegetable, a salad, any protein that resembles its original form, or a decent meal here.

Just one example, yesterday’s lunch was a meat patty (unknown origin, probably beef, texture of soggy piece of bread,) mashed potatoes (not fresh) and canned, then overcooked, again, green beans with some sort of gelatinous tinny tasting “gravy.”

I cannot figure out what the pinkish/purple drink they keep giving us is, but it is just sour and awful.

Today’s lunch was ham (overcooked until it was screaming for moisture,) pinto beans (won’t judge as I hate beans, the texture makes me gag,) and what may have been cabbage in past life prior to being cooked for way too many hours, and jello with one piece of fruit in it.

I gnawed down the ham and left the rest. I put a big dent in my trail mix and beef jerky the last couple days. I would beat someone for a bowl full of chopped romaine, onions, broccoli, and dressing.

Enough for now.

There is beauty even in winter

birdhouse in a tree with no leaves
Birdhouse in a tree
tree branches that are eerily beautiful
Tree branches in winter
Moss on a branch
Moss on a branch in winter
Winter and that effect I love
A beautiful branch
Beautiful winter scene
Beautiful winter scene
Winter branches
Beautiful trees in winter
Winter bah humbug
Beautiful winter tree branches

Scenes from a Saturday with Charlie



Charlie rides Frank at Winterfest in Colonial Beach, Virginia.














Charlie and the other pony.


















Kisses from a sweet boy




Sweet kisses from a sweet boy.






Boy and a beautiful pony in a santa hatCharlie pets the pony.















A man in a penguin suit in a Christmas parade












Santa arrives in a sleigh to Colonial Beach, VA
Santa arrives to WinterFest at Colonial Beach, Virginia.