Thursday, August 20, 2015

Cancer, knee surgery, hand surgery!

I know it's been forever since the last time I posted something but life has been crazy these past couple of months.  BUT, but, but ... some good news .... my husband who had the Gamma Knife Surgery for two brain tumors (from the RCC which has spread) was a success.  Last scan showed they are shrinking and no new ones were found!  So yeahhhhhhh!!!!!

Then he just had another body scan a couple of weeks ago to see how the Sutent meds are doing for the rest of his tumors and again, yeahhhhhhhh!!!!  ALL of his tumors (in both of his lungs, chest lymphnodes and adrenal gland) had significant shrinkage which isn't that common.  Most of the time some of the tumors will respond to the treatment, not all of them but he's on of the lucky ones since he's gotten a total response.  He's still taking the 50 mg Sutent pills.  The biggest side effect is the hand and foot syndrome.  This last round (he will be starting cycle 6, twee weeks on the Sutent and then 1 week off) he had a heck of at time with his feet being so so sore, red, sensitive, peeling, hurting, blistering but doc wants to keep him on the 50 mg as long as he can since he's gotten such great response to the meds.  This Saturday he's starting cycle #6 and since every cycle the side effects can be different we're hoping that the hand and foot syndrome will not show up again or at least in a milder form.

So that's all the cancer news I wanted to share.   Now that we have a couple of months without having to visit UVA I need to get myself fixed!  I've had a knee problem since last November and it's only gotten worse so I'm having knee surgery the end of this month.  It's all soft tissue repair and I'll hopefully be up and running again soon.  Doc told me one week on crutches but after that I should be good to go of course it depends on what all they find they need to fix he said!  Hopefully nothing more then what they already were able to determine from the MRI.  We're talking minor meniscus tear, minor tendon tear, a couple of cysts and a frayed Hoffa Pad (which I had never heard of until now!).  All the bones looked to be in very good shape, yeahhhhh no arthritis in my knee at least so that was some good news.

My hand is another story ... of course it's my right one so I've been a bit freaking out about needing surgery on it since I make a living being a Sign Shop artist, knitting, crocheting, sewing, etc. but this doc made me feel a lot better about getting it done a different way then the other two hand specialists were going to do it.   It's arthritis of the CMC joint and a bone spur which needs to be removed.  The first two were talking about removing a bone and replacing it with a tendon which kinda worried me.  This doc is going to just grind down the bones and putting a metal bar in place for 4 weeks while in a cast to make more space for soft tissue to grow while healing.  Metal bar will be removed and another 2 weeks in a cast then lots of physical therapy and hopefully I'll be able to continue my art jobs.  

I will definitely let you all know how things will transpire in the coming months.  I can type while I'm having my knee fixed.  Not sure how soon I'll be able to type after the hand surgery so no promises there.  

THanks for being patiently waiting for my posts everybody!  

Saturday, May 2, 2015

Selling Stuff and RCC cancer

So I've found a couple of sites where I can add my art work and have it printed on all kinds of stuff.  I'm giving it a shot and will keep adding more pieces of art work to try out.  One of the sites is called and another one is   It's been only a short while since I've opened my shops on both of these sites, I've gotten a lot of views on redbubble but on Artofwhere I haven't figured out yet if there is a way to track my views.  Anyways, it's been awhile since I've written on this blog but so much has been going on it isn't even funny.  My arthritis of the CMC joint in my right hand is being treated with cortisone shots.  After I had the first one I swore I'd never get another one in my hand .... but of course I did.  But, I did go see another hand surgeon the second time around and thank God it didn't hurt as bad afterwards as the first one I had gotten.  I will need surgery down the road but he wants to keep treating it for a year with cortisone shots and wearing my splint at night but during the days as well as long as I can get my work done wearing the stupid thing.  Bone on bone rubbing is not a fun thing to experience so I'm a good girl (most of the time) and do wear the brace/splint.  Now the other reason I haven't had much time and energy to keep up to speed with online shops, making cat toys and working full time is that my dear husband who was diagnosed with kidney cancer back in 2008 and had one of his kidneys and Chucky (his 10 lb kidney tumor) removed is now battling metastasis of Chucky.  So far he's had Gamma Knife Radiosurgery for two tumors in his brain we won't find out for another couple of months if the radiation did his job.  Then today he started on having to take Sutent two weeks on, one week off for the rest of his live which sucks but hopefully this will prolong his life like the doc said.  These meds are like a chemo pill and can create havoc in your body so we're hoping and praying he will be able to handle the side effects.  So, it's been a crazy year so far, all this cancer stuff started happening right before Christmas so needless to say we've been all stressed out but are trying to deal with it all and taking it one day at a time.

Here are the links to the sites I was chatting about have a look and see what you think!  Comments are always welcome.

My PurplePlatypus shop on Redbubble

My PurplePlatypus shop on Artofwhere

And a couple of photo's of some of the items you can purchase on those sites with my artwork on it.

 Design #1

 Design #1

 Design #1

Design #1

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Farmers Market and cmc joint arthritis

Just wanted to share with those of you who have visited me at the Archwood Green Barns Farmers Market in The Plains that I will no longer be at that market.  I've been a vendor at that market for the past 5 years and it's been fun but I'm now moving on to try something different.

My daughter's shop MauveMoose has taken off and since she is leaving for college I will be the one running it for her.  She will still be helping out during school breaks.  I will still have my shop Bits Of Fiber on Etsy so if you are looking for something please have a look here:

I was diagnosed with arthritis of the cmc joint in my right hand so some of the things I've been able to do for years are now almost impossible, crocheting is one of those things.  Down the road I will be able to fix the problem with having surgery but for now wearing a splint and doing less of the things that cause me pain will be the remedy.  At first I was very frustrated when they told me what the issue is but after giving it lots of thought I've come to the conclusion this might be a good thing.  This will force me into trying out different ways to make my artwork.  At work I started using my left hand for painting and at first it sucked but I'm getting better at it every day.  At home I'm focusing on doing more machine sewing and other things that don't hurt my hand.  Being who I am I'm always trying to make the best of what I got and I figure this is a sign it's time for me to turn into a different road ... hopefully a road that will lead me to another fun adventure.