Archive for June, 2013

Yellow-pink rose

Friday, June 28th, 2013

pinkandyellowrose

Here’s a yellow and pink rose.  As opposed to yesterday’s pink and yellow rose.  Completely different things.  Great Art courtesy of the exclusive iPhone-cam, taken during the same rose garden visit as yesterday’s picture, also previously published on my Facebook feed, and part of my famous Garden series.

Actually, I think yesterday’s rose was more pink-orange, now that I look at it.  What do you think, Loyal Readers?

Welcome to post number eleven hundred!  That’s a lot of posts.  Some of them have been worth reading.  Well, maybe a dozen or so.  Three or four, anyway.  Okay, one.  I’m sure at least one was worth reading.  Maybe not.  I like ’em, at any rate.

Fine day today.  LRN4’s looking and feeling pretty good.  She reports her sore toenail is doing a bit better, while her feet are still somewhat numb and there’s a pretty substantial amount of swelling in her legs and feet.  Although nothing even close to what was happening in her early days in the hospital.  So there’s that.  She’s hoping for improvement in that area after she gets off the ‘roids.  I hope so too.

I finished my class today!  Mission accomplished.  Programming starts tomorrow morning.  I’m pretty excited to finally be making some progress.  We’ll see how I feel after a day of pounding away at it.  But I’ll get it done on schedule.  Working draft: one week from today.

I’m watching The Big Sleep on TCM tonight.  LRN4 appears to be asleep right now.  Fortunately, not the Big Sleep.  But maybe I should turn out the lights.  Anyway, it’s a very good movie and pretty much the definitive film noir.  And Rotten Tomatoes likes it.  Plus, Bogey and Bacall.  What could be better than that?

LRN16 mentioned that I should get one of the helicopters with my Amazon gift certificate.  LRN4 correctly pointed out that I already have two of them.  And I love my helicopters!  I was specifically referring to quadcopters in my earlier post.  One of them would be fun, I think – they’re supposed to be very stable and easy to fly.  I’d want a good one, though, and I don’t think my budget brings me anywhere near a good one.  Maybe I should just get one of these instead.  Believe it or not, that was grouped in the “gifts for men” category.  So was this.  You know what I always say: one granny with a walker is geriatrics.  Two grannies with walkers are a sport!

And I’d better get to bed.  It’s late.  I’ll leave my Loyal Readers with this shocking food violence news: garlic scam!

See you on Monday.

Pink-yellow rose

Thursday, June 27th, 2013

pinkandorangerose

Here’s a pink and yellow rose.  It was growing in the rose garden here at the City of Hope just the other day.  They have some absolutely beautiful roses in that garden.  Great Art courtesy of the exclusive iPhone-cam, previously published on my Facebook account, and part of my famous Garden series.

Fine day today.  As predicted yesterday, LRN29 was here.  She accompanied LRN4 to her clinic and doctor visits, both of which took place in the morning.  I remained here in the Village and worked.  More of which below.  The medical visit appears to have gone well.  LRN4’s steroid intake was reduced yet again.  There’s a good chance that she’ll be completely off them by next week.  If not, the next week for sure.  Unless she’s not, of course.  Getting her off the ‘roids means no more daily clinic visits, a consummation devoutly to be wished.

Let’s see, what other LRN4 news do I have?  Her toe continues to improve, although it’s obviously still hurting.  The doctor didn’t have much to say about it other than that it appears to be improving.  So there’s that.  She and LRN29 stopped at the weekly farmer’s market on their way back to the Village.  LRN4 bought a couple of vegetables and LRN29 bought a couple of bags full of vegetables and other stuff.  Looks like they had a nice time.

My work news: I got my four classes in.  On schedule.  Turns out there are five left, so it will be a slightly longer day.  No deviation from the schedule is authorized.  Programming begins on Saturday.

Following up on my recent musing about how to spend my Amazon gift certificate.  LRN4 correctly noticed a coincidental similarity in all my contemplated items.  Well, here’s another possibility: a flying, screaming monkey!  What do you think, Loyal Readers?

Or maybe I should just buy one of these.

We’re watching an interesting movie this evening: Thirteen Days.  According to this Wikipedia article, it’s been very well received.  Also, it lost a lot of money.  As of this writing, Kennedy is just about to make a speech on TV and start the big showdown with the Russkies.  The tension is palpable.  I wonder how it’ll turn out.

Nothing else going on here, so I’ll leave my Loyal Readers with this shocking food violence news: cheeseburger rage!

See you tomorrow.

White tree

Wednesday, June 26th, 2013

whitetree

Here’s a white tree here on the campus of the City of Hope.  Well, the whole tree’s not white.  The leaves look rather green to me.  But the bark is certainly white.  Well, I guess it’s kind of grey.  But that’s white enough for this blog.  Great Art courtesy of the exclusive iPhone-cam, taken here at the City of Hope in beautiful Duarte, California, and part of my famous Garden series.

By the way, my Loyal Readers may be surprised to know that I never retouch my Great Art.  It’s brought to you exactly as it was captured by one of my exclusive cameras.  Any Loyal Readers not surprised by this fact are welcome to submit a comment.  Keep ’em positive, Loyal Readers!

Fine day today.  LRN4 has been feeling pretty good.  I think she still doesn’t see the improvement in herself as well as I do, but she’s coming around.  Our daily series of stair climbs (30 steps at a time in the hospital building after morning clinic visits) still kind of tires her out, but she’s climbing them faster and doing more sets.  Today we did five.  That 150 stairs climbed in just a few minutes.  Take credit where it’s due, LRN4!

Also, she continues to look healthier.  Her muscle tone is gradually coming back and she’s pretty much entirely lost that slightly gaunt look that so many long-term hospital patients get.  Especially the ones going through chemotherapy, radiation, and stem cell transplants.  I’ve even started to detect a few dark-colored hairs growing on her head.  She’s ready to have her hair back, so that’s a good thing.  It’s coming.

Her very sore toe is still draining.  It looked to me like there might be a little blood in the drainage.  Kind of gross, but hopefully not a bad thing.  The PA we saw on Monday had suggested she soak her foot occasionally in water with hydrogen peroxide added, so we did that this evening.  If nothing else, it certainly made it look a lot better.  I’ll suggest it more frequently unless our regular doctor, whom we are visiting tomorrow morning, advises otherwise.

We have a friend here in the Village.  His name is Tom and he and his wife were coming to the clinic at the same time as us every day (they no longer have to go daily; what’s the deal with that?).  His wife is a much stricter caregiver than I am – she won’t let him go to the store or anywhere else off-campus, drive, wear shorts, go anywhere without a mask, etc.  Much of that is sound advice, but LRN4 found out yesterday that they haven’t been to the post-release caregiver briefing we had several weeks before we exited the hospital, where they told us it’s just fine to go places as long as you stay away from crowds.  The crowds pretty much take care of themselves when they see someone with no hair wearing a mask.  Driving is just fine, as far as I can remember.  The shorts and masks are actually a bad idea and a good idea, respectively.  So she has that much right.  But Tom is feeling a bit restricted.  LRN4 suggested the class and he’s very excited about it.  They hold it at least once a month.

LRN29 wasn’t able to make it on Tuesday of this week, so she’s coming tomorrow.  Very kind.  We’re looking forward to seeing her tomorrow.  Since she’ll be here on Thursday, she’ll be able to visit the farmer’s market with us.  Which we enjoy every week.

As discussed yesterday, I made a plan to get some progress made on my education app.  I have felt like I needed to go through some refresher training before I could make much progress with the app, so I’ve been reviewing the 2011 version of the excellent Stanford iOS development course in iTunes U.  Why the 2011 version and not the 2012 version?  I’m glad you asked!  I was about a third of the way through that series before LRN4’s recent little series of events.  Also, I think it’s probably a good idea to check out the iOS 5 version of things before I move to the iOS 6 developments.  Which I need to hurry up and do before the iOS 7 videos come out.  Which should be in just a few more months.  Also, I don’t have the 2012 series downloaded yet, and with the lousy wifi connection we have here at the hospital, it’s going to take many, many days to get it.  So I’m watching the 2011 version, and it appears to have pretty much exactly what I need to know.  So that’s what I’m watching for now.

It’s been taking seemingly forever to get through those classes, though.  There are 26 sessions, most of which are a little more than an hour long.  As of this morning, I had about 12 classes remaining.  So I decided to spend four hours a day finishing this class.  By my reckoning, that means I’ll be done on Friday.  Got my four sessions in today.  I’m committed for Thursday and Friday.  And the first draft of the app will be done next week.

But don’t get me started on watching the 2012 and 2013 WWDC session videos.  There is more absolutely critical content I need to consume than I can possibly find time for.  I despair.

Speaking of which, I checked out three very interesting-looking electronic books from the library last night and I have two weeks to read them all.  Plus, I put a few others on hold and received notifications today on two of those.  Plus, I have four paper (old school!) library books with their own ticking clock.  There just isn’t enough time in the day for this stuff.

Note to people considering learning how to write iOS programs and compete with me.  Do not view this course.  It would be very bad for you.

And that’s about it for today.  I’ll leave my Loyal Readers with this shocking food violence news: corn heist!

See you tomorrow.

Grouchy lion

Tuesday, June 25th, 2013

grouchylion

Here’s the grouchiest lion I’ve ever seen.  Possibly it’s because he’s assigned to guard the rattiest-looking part of the hospital campus.  There are lots of little donor plaques over there (see the background, for example), but it looks kind of like they don’t maintain it with their usual alacrity.  The lion thinks they could do better.  Just saying.

Fine day today.  LRN4 is feeling pretty good and so am I.  We both got drowsy in the afternoon, so we both took a little nap.  She managed to lie down for hers.  I slumped over in my chair.  Same thing, really.

I’m trying to finish watching the series of iOS development videos in the next few days.  I’m not quite halfway through – I think there are about 11 to go, and each takes about an hour.  I’m really enjoying them and learning but after a couple in a row I tend to lose concentration  So there’s a challenge for me.  Plus, I get busy doing other things, some of which are important and some of which are time wasters.  Might have to try watching two in the morning and another two in the afternoon for the next few days.  We’ll see how that goes, won’t we?

I’m still trying to figure out how to spend my $25 Amazon birthday gift certificate.  Any suggestions, Loyal Readers?  I’m at pretty much of a complete loss at this point.  Maybe this?  Or even this?  Or how about this?

Short post tonight.  I’ll leave my Loyal Readers with this shocking toilet violence news:  plunger beatdown!

See you tomorrow.

Tiny window

Monday, June 24th, 2013

tinywindow

Here’s a tiny stained glass window.  It’s a couple of inches across.  I believe it originally came from some medieval church, but it’s not there anymore.  It’s in Pennsylvania now.  Great Art courtesy of the exclusive iPhone-cam, taken at Bryn Athyn, and part of my famous Architecture series.

Need to give this short shrift tonight.  It’s almost 11:00 and LRN4 is already asleep.  I should be too.

Good day today.  We had an excellent visit with our substitute doctor this morning.  Actually, it was a physician’s assistant and we liked her very much.  Our regular doc is on vacation for a few days.  LRN4’s red blood cells were low, so they pumped some new ones in.  Her white cell count was at 2.0 this morning.  That’s kind of low.  I asked the PA if we should be concerned that it doesn’t seem to be going up very well on its own.  She said LRN4’s progress is perfectly normal for this point.  I asked if it was normal for the count to go down so quickly after it was pumped up to about 9 by the neupogen just a week ago.  She said it was indeed normal and that the good sign is that the levels responded so well to the neupogen.  That means her body is capable of making as many white cells as it needs.  It just takes a while for it to sort everything out and get back to working normally.  LRN4 is still in the middle of rebooting, to put it in terms even I can understand.  We just have to remain patient.  But I’m tired of being patient.

I was about to say that I want my wife back and I want her back now.  But I do have her back, miraculously.  We just need to hang on for a little while longer.  And then reach the point where we can remain focused on the present and the future and not spend time looking over our shoulders wondering whether the past is catching up with us.  We’ll get there.  It’s harder than I thought it would be, but we’ll get there.

Watching Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House tonight.  It’s one of our favorite movies.  Has both Cary Grant and Myrna Loy – something for everyone!  What a perfect movie.  Highly recommended.

Loving the new computer and iPad.  Time to start using them to make money now.  I continue to find it difficult to concentrate on work.  It’s getting a bit better – I’m actually thinking about working now!  But doing the work is still a bit elusive.  I realize I need to take one step at a time, so I’m trying to be patient with myself (there’s that word again).  Time’s a’wasting, though.  Deadlines loom.  But I’ll make it.  I’ve always worked best under a bit of pressure, whether externally imposed or self-procrastinated.  And now that I have deadlines, things will pick up Real Soon Now.

And I’ll leave my Loyal Readers with this shocking but very fortuitous food violence news: banana skin slip stops steak knife stabbing!

See you tomorrow.