Photo shoot with Mom!

Henry here with the latest.  Mom’s church is making a new directory. She picked me to be in the directory with her! Here we are waiting for our photo shoot I was a good boy!

The photographer was excited to see me. He actually put me in front of another session.

The last directory mom had her photo taken with Rommy.

At that photo shoot the photographer was excited to see Rommy. When mom looked at the proofs Rommy looked handsome in all of them and there was only a couple where she looked OK.

After our photo shoot she looked at the proofs and with a big sigh she realized I looked great in every photo but she had her eyes closed or she was making a funny face or she had a double chin in the rest of the photos.  We get the pictures next month and I can’t wait to see how they turned out and to be on her desk at work!  (And in the church directory!)

Mad Maxx and Mom from her desk at her office.   Love the jeans Mom!

Rommy and Mom from her desk at her office.  You still look good in that color of red Mom!

Roscoe and Mom from her desk at her office.   Roscoe was rescued from the streets and he was found alone, a puppy of less than six weeks old. He really does adore Mom!

Monty needs a photo shoot too!  We can’t wait to be on Mom’s desk at work!

P.S.  Does anyone know what “work” is?

Little Free Library

 

Who did I happen to see this last week at the Little Free Library at the end of the parking lot?

An elderly man  neighborhood who walks over to get his books.  He told me he never went to the regular library any more.

Someone walking their dog, there are dog treats in our little free library.

And our mail delivery person!

All the cookbooks and I’ve put in there now gone. I’m going to add this one today.

This is a rescue cookbook from the thrift store. I never cook anything out of these books I just sit and read them over and over, they are like good friends.

Need to introduce my friends to others right?

 

LympheDivas Helping me cope with Lymphedema

Not a tattoo but a compression sleeve and glove to combat lymphedema.

Lymphedema was caused by damage from my cancer treatments.  I have to wrap my arm like this every night, applying compression to my arm to keep the accumulation of lymph fluid from swelling my arm into a scary huge mess:

Compression is 24-7.  During the day it is sleeves and gloves.  The sleeves and gloves suggested by my physical therapist are the same color and ugly as heck.  Note the seams on the fingers, makes typing a chore.

Discouraged I scoured the internet to find alternatives.  Ta-da!  LympheDivas, a comfortable and fun alternative.

Just working up the courage to wear one of these:

A Message From the World’s Astronauts

Compelling message from our around the World Astronauts warning the 2016 Climate Change Conference of a vanishing planet.

Includes a moving message from Netherlands’ Astronaut Wubbo Ockels, Ph.D where he describes his love of the Earth and stating his beloved Earth has cancer.  He recorded his statement the day before he died from cancer.

Offering hope if we all work together we can save our planet.

 

Lymphedema is Forever

 

You can’t cheat lymphedema.  It can affect a famous actress, different cancer survivors, the soldier who suffered a terrible trauma, a child with a genetic or inherited issue.  It’s with you forever. Don’t follow your treatment? Serious complications will follow.

I will need to wrap my arm like this every night for the rest of my life.

Some of the supplies I need every day, these are a just a portion and these  along with the rest are not covered by my insurance, there are much more not pictured here.  I spoke with my physical therapist about why some people let their lymphedema get out of control. Came to light that perhaps they could not afford all of the supplies.  Homeless?  Have to choose between your lymphedema supplies and paying your rent or mortgage or groceries?   The truth is my insurance pays for none of the supplies I need to keep my lymphedema under control!  They pay for a portion of one sleeve and glove each year that is my daytime therapy (I’ll need at least 2 or 3 each year minimum if I am really careful).  I am not alone, another lymphedema sufferer I know is in the same boat as I am. We both have jobs so we are not going to sink but that boat next to us is sinking.

I am getting my lymphedema under control and was just measured for my first sleeve and glove that I’ll wear during the day.   My insurance is not covering all of this and the supplier called me to make sure I knew my out-of-pocket was quite hefty and not part of my deductible and I was responsible for this uninsured portion.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rebel Rodriguez, Arvada, Colorado’s Woman of the Year, and Little free food bank!

Rebel Rodriguez is the 2017 Arvada Chamber Woman of the Year.

Here in Arvada, Colorado our woman of the year, Rebel Rodriguez runs an amazing food bank serving disadvantaged residents and Arvada’s homeless.  She also stocks an equally amazing little free food bank on the corner of Grandview and Olde Wadsworth at the Rising Church.  The Blessing Box.

Inspiring me to make snack and lunch bags for our children and homeless.

Thank you Rebel for your community service, to read more about Rebel go here to Rebel’s article.

Thrift Store Rescue!

A small food bank run by a local church near me has an even smaller free library for the families and homeless people it serves.

No children’s books!?!  Gotta fix that!  Children need books to nourish their minds   For less than $15.00 these books will fill the lower shelf of the small library for those kids!

 

March is Lymphedema Awareness Month

Lymphedema is a swelling caused by excess fluid.  Cancer patients can get lymphedema because lymph nodes are damaged or removed during surgery and damaged by radiation.  Lymphedema becomes uncomfortable and limits movement as it progresses.

Treatment?  The therapists through my current insurance are booked weeks out.  As lymphedema progresses it can cause tissue damage and other permanent damage.  Waiting weeks for some relief was not an option.  I increased the exercises for stimulating lymphatic system and added a manual lymphatic drainage (light self-massage) to reduce the swelling.  I was unaware of this simple technique until a friend told me about it.

The results?  Swelling reduced and movement almost back to normal.  Much more comfortable.  Since I was previously doing the exercises, I believe the light self-massage was the thing that reduced the swelling so dramatically.

At the preliminary therapy appointment I was told that my insurance did not provide any massage or self-massage techniques.  I was told that the self-massage probably did not help.  If I wanted to continue self-massage to go ahead because it probably didn’t hurt anything.

My first therapy appointment to learn how to do the compression bandaging designed to reduce swelling?  Two more weeks.

The interesting thing about this self-massage is the light touch used.  One therapist described it as pushing a dime across your skin.  It is just a suggestion to your tissues to wake up and get that fluid moving.  Anything more aggressive is a no-no!