FAMILY

FAMILY
I fight for a cure for me & our amazing children❤️

Saturday, April 2, 2022

Happy Spring 😊

Well, it's been quite a while since I sat down to write another blog! It's hard to believe that we are in the month of April! I've been busy and thankfully COVID is calming down. BTW this is blog #117! I've been sharing my story and my journey living with Alzheimer's for 7 years! Whew -- so much has happened over those years and thankfully I'm still able to write, read, knit, drive, cook, make reservations and share my journey - with the hopes of helping others dealing with this disease.

Most of my days have been pretty good! I enjoy listening to my books, meditating, my bible plans and listening to the 'Pray As You Go' app. I also really enjoy knitting and connecting with my friends and family. The weather is warm now so I'm able to sit outside and hang out with all the birds! 

My cognition is ok, actually pretty good. I do struggle with short term memory and have found that I need to write down important details. A few days ago Bob mentioned some events he was going to. I made the mistake of not writing it down! Most days I keep my journal with me and when I get on the phone with my friends & Family I make sure to take notes on what we talked about. It's not that annoying but I'm sure it's not fun for my family and friends.

I am staying active and enjoying my Yoga classes and my walks around the Iron Horse Trail. I still enjoy my audible books too. I just finished the Sea of Freedom by Sarah Lark. I also really enjoyed Anatomy by Dana Schwarz and The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. I'm so thankful for the Audio version of these books. I don't think my cognition works well when I'm reading so I just don't bother with it.

I had a lovely time connecting with one of my hero's - Eric Dishman last month! All of my Intel buddies will know who he is. When Eric got sick many years ago he shared his journey and wrote about his struggles. He is the one that inspired me to be brave and share my story in order try to help others too! That's why I started blogging after I got my diagnosis. I'm so glad he's doing well and hope to connect with him again soon.

In February we lost our dear friend Michael Chernow😭 I was able to fly out with my friends Monika & Louis so we could attend his funeral. Michael's wife is Monica and we've been friends for over 30 years. I told Bob I needed to be there and he helped me get my flights. It was rough but I'm so glad I was there to surround Monica and her kids with love and hugs. 

On a happy note I was able to attend the East Bay Women's Conference in San Ramon. Bob was very involved in this and I was so happy that Brittany came with me. She was my caregiver for the day! The speakers were phenomenal and I'm so glad I was able to attend. I even got dressed up and put makeup on! 


I've recently been speaking at a few events over Zoom. I did a FaceBook Live event with Claire Day and earlier that day I spoke to the staff at Genentech! It was so fun to share my story, my journey of living with AD. I'm really hoping that I can do some IN PERSON events soon! I do think that COVID is slowing down so lets hope and pray we can hug each other again💓

Kristen had a birthday this month and it was nice to go to a restaurant! Her bestie Candi and I took her to dinner and a Peruvian restaurant! YUM - it was delicious. The downside was that it was SUPER LOUD!! I thankfully had ear plugs with me. I'm sure I've mentioned how sensitive I am to loud noises now. And I ALWAYS have ringing in my ears so adding loud noises really messes me up!

A few weeks ago my high school buddy Jane came over. She ordered food for us, picked it up and we ate at the dining room table! It was so much fun. Normally we meet at restaurants but eating at home was really fun. I'm so thankful for her - I know she's still working full time but she still makes time for me. 

Bob's son Phil was in town last week! I hadn't seen him since COVID and it was so wonderful to hang out. We sat outside at one of our favorite spots - CRUMBS. These little moments mean the world to me. 


A week prior I had a WONDERFUL visit with Matt Gunsul and his family. Matt used to work for me at Intel and he promised when he was in town he would make time for me. He was on Spring Break with his wife and kids and we had a wonderful time at breakfast. Thank you Matt & May💜 Oh- and since I paid for lunch he donated to my Alzheimer's Walk! That's the kind of guy Matt is.

I would be remiss if I didn't talk about Celly and my time with Ryan & Kristen! Celly is always the center of attention and is the sweetest dog EVER. I just love spending time with them and thoroughly enjoy wrestling with my grand doggy🐕

I also had a lunch date with Rebecca in late March! And a few days later she got married!! She also adopted a new doggy! Her name is Maisy and I can't wait to meet her. After our lunch date we went to a pet store so of course I had to buy Maisy a toy. I bought her a SLOTH!!! And guess what, she LOVES it. Thank you Rebecca for sending the pictures of Maisy playing with her Sloth!


Every day is a gift and I am so thankful for all my friends and family who look out for me! A few days ago Debbie and I connected and talked and talked. Friends are EVERTHING! It wasn't anything special - we just grabbed two chairs, ordered some coffee and talked about anything and everything! That's what I like - no agenda, no drama, just lots of fun and love and support. 

So that's what's been going on with me. YES I have constant headaches, YES I have constant ringing in my ears. But the good news is I am fully functional and other than the short term memory stuff I'm doing pretty darn good!!! 

Many thanks to all of you for your love, prayers and support🙏 And I look forward to seeing all of my Intel buddies on April 23rd at PEDRO'S!!! I cannot wait to see you and give you a BIG HUG🤗.



Sunday, January 23, 2022

Its 2022! YIKES😲

Well hello to 2022! I'm still not used to saying that. Every time I journal, I struggle with the date. I know we're in January but I can't keep the days straight. I guess that's OK - I use my calendar to keep notes and I'm aware of what I have scheduled. Most of the time I use my phone AND my calendar just to be safe! I do still struggle horribly with short term memory but when I can't remember what I was doing I sit down and wait until the memory comes back! I try VERY hard not to beat myself up for all the mistakes and confusion that I have. I know for a fact that the meditation and breathing and bible plans that I read everyday help with this. And they defiantly help with my mood and my spirt.

Bob and I celebrated our Anniversary and really enjoyed our dinner at Blackhawk Grill and a movie on Dec 12th. We watched West Side Story! I definitely recommend it, especially if you like musicals. I had some wonderful lunch dates again last month too, Carole came over and we had lunch at our house! That was really a nice treat. Our friends Tim & Elaine had a delayed turkey dinner and it was awesome! It was so nice to be with them and to meet some of her family and friends. 


The following week I had lunch with one of my high school buddies, Jane! We had a fabulous meal at Bridges and then went for a long walk on the Iron Horse Trail. The following day my bestie Linda and her hubby Doug came over to hang out! They were in town visiting their daughter and all the grandkids. I was so happy they made the time to meet with me too! 

The same day Karen drove down from Folsom and we had a lovely lunch at Blackhawk Grill. I hadn't seen her since COVID and it was nice to reconnect 😊Debbie came over too the following day. This is not normal - I don't always have so many appointments or lunch dates but for some reason near the holidays my calendar was full!!


The big drama of last month was a little cat bite from my caregiver kitty RUSTY! We were resting in bed and watching TV and I was petting him and he decided he wanted to bite me! I'm not sure if he was over stimulated or what.....ANYWAY, Bob and I went to the movies - no idea what we saw...after the show my hand was swollen so we went straight to the Emergency Room! This was not the first time I've been bitten by a cat. When I was working at ARF in Walnut Creek one of the cats - his name was Petal, bit me. It was many years ago but I remember that the following day ARF called and said I had to go straight to the hospital. Apparently cats mouths and cat bites can cause infection. SO - we go to the ER and he gives me a shot, wraps up my hand and gives me a two week prescription. By this time it was even more swollen but thankfully not too painful. A few days later my hand was so swollen I couldn't bend it or use it. Thankfully the medicine kicked in and all is good now! I do have a nice puncture wound but its all better now. 

So - aside from that I had a great month! I listened to a great book - 'My Name Is Anton' by Catherine Ryan Hyde. I also started reading 'Keep Sharp' by Sanjay Gupta! It's filled with data and is all about the brain and Alzheimer's. There are excellent suggestions regarding exercise, memory activities and diet. 

I was able to spend the weekend with Kristen and that was really fun. Celly is such a good boy and we had fun walking with him and watching a lot of TV. Ryan was out of town and we had the house to ourselves!

I'm still painting and for Christmas I got a new canvas from Phil & Elizabeth! It's going to be so pretty. Lots of pink flowers and fluffy sky.

So that's my update! Lots of down time. I'm still resting most afternoons and that's when I listen to my books.  I'm still doing my yoga and walks, and some days are better than others. I have constant headaches and constant ringing in my ears. It's annoying but it's been going on for a while so I try not to let it bring me down.

Bob's been home most nights and we've really enjoyed having more time together. Yesterday we watched the Packer/ 49er game! Stressful for sure. He's a Packer fan and I'm a 9er fan - LOL! We don't get too dramatic about it thankfully....I'm glad Jonny is doing well and it's nice to have my husband at home.

The highlight this month was attending one of my best friends daughters wedding in Austin, TX! Monica and I have been friends for almost 30 years! Her beautiful daughter Annie got married to the love of her life. We've been to some elegant and beautiful weddings but this one was amazing! We had so much fun and our friends Monika and Louis were with us too. We danced, we drank, we took pictures...it was awesome. Austin is such a cute town and the hotel we stayed in was awesome too! I'm so happy for Annie and Alex and I can't wait to visit them in New Jersey when things calm down. 



So I guess that's my update! I look forward to my Alzheimer's support groups every week and I am thankful for all the support, phone calls, texts and in person visits! Please keep them coming 😍 Let's hope 2022 is going to be a great year!

Sending love, hugs and prayers to all of you. You lift me up and keep me going💓