Sunday, December 28, 2014

Christmas Day 2014

We had a lovely Christmas Lunch at Paul and Jeni's. We missed the family members that couldn't be there this year, but we enjoyed the time very much.
Stuart, Cherie, Lois and Phoebe arrived safely in Seoul, Sth Korea. We were grateful for that. They are having a wonderful 2 week or so holiday with Cherie's family and they will hopefully catch up with friends as well.
Dad made it there. Amazing feat after spending the last couple of weeks in hospital, with conditions including Bronchitis and later on Pneumonia.
Bruce took this photo of us. Baby Alice was asleep.

Monday, December 22, 2014

Merry Christmas!

Where does the time go?
AS you can observe, I haven't been keeping up with my blog updates.
Hopefully will get some time to update this January!

For the meantime I wish you a merry Christmas with lots of fun and good times with family and friends, safe holidays and some relaxing time out of the normal hustle and bustle. I didn't send any Christmas cards this year as I had planned to do an update here.
Here is a brief version:
We celebrated our family Christmas on Saturday 20th December. It was a great day.... mainly watching the girls having fun with their abundant gifts. Grandparents went a little bit over the top! Rick's borther Andrew joined us which was special. In the afternoon we had a swim and afternoon tea at Bruce and Sylvia's and Stuart and family caught up with the Canberra cousins and their families. Thanks Bruce for this photo: Sam, Ben, Lois and Phoebe  enjoying time together after a swim. They see each other once a week and their Mainly Music playgroup.

There is great excitement as Stuart, Cherie, Lois and Phoebe are off to Korea on Christmas Eve to visit Cherie's family and  catch up with some friends. They'll be away for just over two weeks.
After taking the Stu-fam to the airport, I will stay in Sydney and Rick and Cameron will arrive later on Christmas Eve.
Dad is in hospital and is very ill with Pneumonia and several other conditions. This is following another bout in hospital last week.
So it will be a different Christmas this year. Not sure how well he will be and it's very likely he will have a steady stream of family visitors in the hospital over the time.... if he is up to that. Mum is coping really well but must be exhausted. I was in Sydney with Mum for a few days last week and Deirdre and Paul and spouses are helping out lots this week. So Mum has got lots of support, which she needs right now.

The year seemed very busy. Rick and I both worked.. Rick full-time, me part time.. which felt like full time!  Noticing more health tests and doctor visits and bills... this year!
I have reached the 5 year clear-of-cancer milestone, which feels really great! My brother Bruce has reached it too. Lots of reasons to celebrate!

Cameron continues to work hard... and keep an eye on his dad who works on the same floor! He is having  two week break from work now, to rest and recharge his energy for the new year.

I hope you have a wonderful, peaceful and safe Christmas with family and with friends.

I try and upload some pics soon!

Monday, December 15, 2014

CPAP... the new normal

Well, I have been busy and haven't added much to our blog lately!
Since we returned from Broadbeach in October, we've both been working hard.  I've been working a lot more than I expected this term! I have been to Sydney to spend some time with Mum and Dad.  Dad has had too many health challenges this year but has been amazingly positive and has faced them all courageously. Life isn't much fun for him these days!

I've been getting used to using my CPAP machine to sleep and have been sleeping much better. I have been feeling less tired and have found that my blood pressure has gone back to within the normal range. This is good news. No need for any blood pressure medication.

I wouldn't wish the CPAP machine on anyone, but it has helped me and I am told it will increase my life span. The first two months while using the rental machine was pretty difficult.

Since late September I have been using my own brand new machine and things have been good, despite a few setbacks with a bad season of hay fever and a rye neck that was very painful. Rick had a few medical check-ups and also a trip to emergency with a kidney stone. He seems to be fine now.

We've been enjoying minding Lois and Phoebe a bit more regularly to enable both Stuart and Cherie to attend worship team practices together. This has meant we get to see them on Tuesday nights and then I mind the girls on Thursday afternoons.

Towards the end of the term I was asked to work a few full- week stints, so then I had to  miss out on minding the girls as well as going to my Thursday morning group at church.

Note added 22/12/14
I am really enjoying having more energy now I have adjusted well to my CPAP machine. What a difference consistent and quality sleep  makes! For our family Christmas I prepared breakfast, morning tea, lunch and dinner; went for a swim in the afternoon  and still went to bed after 10pm, feeling a bit tired but not thoroughly exhausted as I have been for years! I could not have done all that this time last year! Amazing!

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Gold Coast - Broadbeach Oct 2014

Enjoying time at the Gold Coast. We are here for a week. We love the weather, walking on the beach, our great apartment and the wonderful new light rail ( tram system) called the "G:" !

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Delightful granddaughters

Spending time with Lois and Phoebe is a great way to enjoy life.
My neighbour said to me the other day, when he saw me with Lois and Phoebe in the backyard, "With little faces like those around, you wouldn't want to be dead for quids."

 We joined Stuart, Cherie, Lois and Phoebe at the "Mainly Music" playgroup special open day for Fathers, on the Saturday before Fathers' Day. Amy, Gavin, Sam & Ben, and grandparents Bruce and Sylvia were there too. It was a fun morning that helped us see what the kids enjoy every week.

High School Reunion Aug 30

Peakhurst High 50th Anniversary
30th August
We haven't changed much!
My dear friend Kim ( Kimra)
 Four of us girls met up at the school to reminisce..... with old and dear friends Julie, Larelle and Kim

 Just like being back at school!

This was a photo of 1B. There was a whole room set aside for memorabilia
Us in the English block. We noticed that there was still the same bricks and lino from 50 years ago! The building materials back then were designed to last longer, I suppose.

We spent a couple more hours chatting over lunch at Oatley. What a lovely day!

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Celebrating with friends

It was great to celebrate Mary-ann's 60th Birthday in July at Federation Square
 Lee and Greg

Peter and Mary-ann

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Hospital visits in Sydney

Dad had his first session of radiation therapy for skin cancers yesterday. So far so good. He is staying at the private hospital next door to the Cancer Centre and he gets wheeled over to the almost daily appointments.
The staff remember him from the last stay there, in May (I think), and they like his sense of humour.
Dad was relieved to finally start the treatment. He was in good spirits on his return to his private room.

Mum and I had dinner out , just down the road from the hospital. We are trying to do a few things that she normally doesn't get the chance to do..... while fitting in hospital time as well.
The exciting news of yesterday was that my niece Sarah had a beautiful baby boy, Taj the same hospital.
Taj Hugo Peddie 

Friday, July 11, 2014

Something to really celebrate

I have just reached a huge milestone:
On June 17, I had my FINAL check-up with the oncologist! YAY!
He told me that he didn't expect to ever see me again.

A special day for me and it was such a wonderful feeling!

In October it will be five years since my breast cancer diagnosis. November marks the first operation, December the last check up with the breast surgeon and then next April is when I can stop the medication.

I can see the light at the end of this long tunnel.

Mum, Dad, Deirdre and Paul had these beautiful flowers delivered to me, to mark this occasion. I felt very loved. It made it a very special time. Thanks very much!

Monday, July 7, 2014

Dad : May to August & Mum's July Birthday

The month of May saw Dad get really ill with a lung infection. It landed him in hospital for a couple of weeks. I was able to skip work and spend some time in Sydney.
Dad also had problems with skin cancers growing on his head. The specialist kindly looked in on him while he was being treated for the lung infection. This shortened the time to wait, but it has still been a very slow process for Dad to get the treatment he has needed. Now it's July and he is about to start a 4 week course of radiation therapy, as an operation to remove the skin cancers was considered too risky for Dad. Very difficult time for him and for Mum. He spent the whole time in the private hospital while having the 17 sessions of radiation treatment.

Mum's birthday in July : The day before his initial treatment Dad was well enough to go out to a birthday lunch at a nearby cafĂ© with Mum, Deirdre and I.
We had to take Dad for his first radiation therapy treatment on Mum's Birthday ( July3)

Dad at the cafe
Mum enjoying her pre-birthday lunch

Coffee out with Mum on her birthday. Looking good for 83!


 Mum and Dad in August. Dad's treatment on the skin cancers on his head is over and he is recovering well now. Amazing to see! He has survived once more.