Nan Mustard's Recovery

This blog is a record of Erin (Nan) Mustard's recovery.

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

A normal day sort of...

Dear Family and Friends,
10:45, heading for bed as soon as this blog is completed. We've had some high points today. Nikki let us know weeks ago that Keanna's class at school would be in charge of chapel today and Nan determined to be there. So we got up this morning, I worked for awhile and Nan rested in a bit, then she dressed, washed her hair using a special shampoo device. We arrived 1/2 an hour early so we stayed put in the car where it was sunny warm and comfortable. Then we wheeled our way in to enjoy a very quick moving 1/2 hour. When Keanna spotted her Grammy she raced across the room and jumped into our arms. She was so pleased to see us and when Nikki arrived Keanna waved to her happily. It was fun to video tape and watch Keanna in action doing the motions for the songs. All too soon it was over and Nikki had to race back to work and we said good bye to our sweet little lady and came home. We got Nan settled in upstairs and then I headed out to see 5 properties in Oakland for FHA reverse mortgages. Then back to Brentwood to pick up the photo Jason took for me the other day in Oakhurst since they are now asking for it and shopping at Safeway since Nan was ready to create dinner.

When I got home and brought in the food Nan was happy to see me. She was ready to get out of bed and come downstairs. Straight to the kitchen she went and cooked a wonderful dinner, scallops, wonderful lima beans, french bread and she did it all. She had seconds along with cranberry juice over ice. A few minutes ago we hooked up a new TPN for her but the pump started screaming so just restarted and it seems to be OK now.

Tomorrow I will once again be out for the day seeing things in Walnut Creek, San Pablo, Vallejo, Oakland and then home again. Oh how we wish some checks would come in the mail, every day things get more and more critical. We have plenty on the books, its just getting lenders to mail the checks for work we have completed. Loree kindly sent out statements today and that usually shakes some checks loose, we sure hope so. Tomorrow our health insurance takes about $1,100 out of the checking account for their monthly fee, wow things sure pile up.

Nan had a brief time of nausea this morning but it passed. She made it the entire night in the bed without the nasty back pain of the night before. Since the doctors have prescribed some new medicine which puts good bugs in Nan's GI her output has become must less liquid, best in fact in over a year. But after she eats we have to follow up with several times of empying the bag, however that is something we are thankful to do since it means things are working and that she gets to eat and enjoy some real food.

I'm wrapping up now. To those who wonder if we finished the paperwork for nans disability, yes and no. nan did it all but they claim they never got it so we have to start over again and Nan is just now feeling well enough to tackle it again.

So we send love and ask you for your prayers in Nans behalf. One special note to a special person. Sylvia came and cleaned before we came home from the hospital and it was so wonderful to come home to clean floors, tidy counters and all the dated food gone. Also we are enjoying an orchid she brought to us for Nan's birthday. She said it was to replace all the ones that had died and that she had thrown out. Well it is beautiful and doing quite well, thanks!

Our friend Irene is on a cruise this week, hope she is having a great time with Ron, sister kathy and husband and the open sea.


tim and nan

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Wintery outside, cozy inside

Dear Friends and Family,
Nan has had a decent day today with visits from both Teri and Julie, visiting nurses. We had a rough night and this morning at 4:30 she could not take the pain of being in bed flat any longer so we came down to the recliners and she slept until 8 am. When we came down it was very cold but a little fire brought the room right up and with her heated cover she was warm and comfortable. She had less pain in the recliner. She had tea and a toast with an orange for breakfast. The oranges are from Jim and Marti's private orchard and they are sweet and perfect. We are hoping we can snag some more of them. Nan loves them and they are great for her body.
Teri came and took vitals and resigned all the papers since Crescent considers Nan a new patient. When she tried to draw blood from the picc line it was no go for either line so she had to do a small butterfly needle for the blood work. I help Nan's hand as she has come to really hate needles. Teri was very attentive to all the needs our situation presents. She has called again twice today going over details. At the present time we are counting on what Nan can drink and the TPN to keep the fluid levels right in Nan's body. So far so good. After Teri left Nan went back up to rest for awhile mid morning. At 1 pm Julie, the wound care nurse, came and assessed the incision wound and redressed the nephrostomy entry points. She says the wound is much much better and improving rapidly. She keeps us in supplies for the dressing changes we do twice a day. Of interest is the billing for one of the surgeries they did at UCSF to plug Nan's ureters. The surgery total was $59,000 but the highest cost was a special medical glue used in the actual ureters. Its cost was $22,500. That blew me away.
Nan rested for awhile this afternoon and then asked to come down. I went up and helped her descend to the family room. While I worked she watched an episode of MASH and then asked what I thought of making home made potato cheese soup. Well that idea seemed wonderful to me so she gave the orders which included a trip to the Safeway for cheese. She told me what to do, I did it and the soup turned out great, she had two bowls with crackers and juice. Now she has taken all 8 pills she has to take each evening and is just waiting for me to get done and then we will go up to rest. So all in all it has been a good day and Nan has had many happy and contented moments along with the usual pain and suffering that are always with her. We are very grateful to the visiting nurses and their dedication. Since the picc line won't allow blood draws it will have to have a fancy rotorooter medicine put in at some point.
Tomorrow morning if all goes according to plan we are going to venture out for a trip to Brentwood to see Keanna's class in charge of chapel at her school. It will all depend on how Nan is doing in the morning but she is looking forward to it. Then we will come home and I will put her to bed. I will hit the road for many appraisals in Oakland and then back home as quickly as I can. While I hate to leave Nan for a minute we think this is a compromise we can live with. Loree has agreed to be on call if Nan needs assistance.
Our money challenges continue, another day without checks in the mail, this is really testing our faith as each day means we are further behind.

This evening we are thankful to be warm, comfortable, full and in relatively good health. Nan's heart rate was 115 this morning, back to her normal level for the past many months. No fever and the blood taken will tell us the rest of the story.

So we send our love, our prayers continue for Sharon and her medical issues, for Pam and her medical issues, for Dolly our dear friend in Napa, for Lizzy Shafqat in southern california and a dear friend as well.

Thank you for your prayers, they are needed so much.


tim and nan

Monday, February 26, 2007

First day home a success!

Dear Family and Friends,
Nan had a good night with minimal discomfort. We were up several times emptying bags but went right back to sleep. We were hosts of the zoo, Starr under covers loving every minute of having her mommy back, Lady at my feet and on my feet and then MooMoo came to join the party. Only George held back afraid of Starr. Nan decided to go down about 7:30 so we went down to a cold room. We quickly changed that with a fire, heated blanket and hot tea. Nan was not feeling too great during the morning hours, her tummy felt too full of a bottle of water and hot tea. Around 11 she went back up to rest and I went to town for meds after getting her settled in. While Sandy at Longs was working on her meds I drove around and did a driveby appraisal, picked up a check for a new appraisal and then went back to Longs. Meds were ready and Sandy asked me to convey her best wishes for recovery. She has been a wonderful friend and advocate for Nan over these past years. Nan stayed upstairs sleeping and once when she was awake the TV suddenly went blank. Comcast Cable had a failure of a system and so we had no internet or TV for a couple hours.
Jean, my appraisal writer and friend, called to say her friend who is a heating and AC man was coming to dinner and could he take a look at our system. He and Al arrived at the worst of the rain and while he was looking into the furnace it suddenly began to heat. He said he just tapped the side of the ignitor assembly. It continued to heat for several hours before deciding to quit. Nice while it lasted. Thank you Jean for your help and we sort of know now what is wrong or may be wrong with the unit. Maybe we can get another year out of it before having to replace it.
So today I picked up one check and one came in the mail. I am still very short of what I need right now. That really is hard to live with. First thing I did today was to call our E&O company and work out a payment to keep our policy in effect. They accepted a fax of a check made out to them.
At lunch time Nan agreed to some asparagrass soup with crackers and juice. This evening I proposed pancakes and they turned out good. Nan had a normal sized one and then took a second one, cute little dude with a glass of milk. Also she has had a couple pieces of Sees candy along the way. We discovered that the oranges that Jim and Marti Edwards gave us from the trees in their yard are wonderful. nan and I ate two of them this afternoon, sweet, tender and juicy. Thanks!
I have worked in house today, clearing my desk, taking calls, answering questions, fixing problems and we took in about 15 orders today. That is very good news. Steve made a discovery that our local MLS board has made a link to the MLS board in San Jose so we will be able to get important data without having to join yet another expensive board. That was a very nice find indeed.
Crescent Home Health called several times today and worked out what was to be in the TPN and then had it delivered to our door. A little while ago I loaded it up and hooked it up to Nan so she is now on TPN getting large amounts of potassium, magnessium, salt, dextrose, nutrition etc. She has had very little nausea today, has rested a lot and I think is doing pretty well. The medicine proposed by the kidney doctors is really helping to slow down the loss of fluid from the colostomy bag. That is the first progress we have seen in many many months in that area.

And so our day comes to an end, it is such a blessing and pleasure to be home again, to be able to go to our own frig or the garage or the freezer instead of the caf. Nan moves slowly and is weak but is able to walk from the family room chair to the stair chair and then from the stair chair to the bed. I walk beside her just in case and to carry the weight of the TPN or hydration. I had planned to be out tomorrow but I think I'll probably stay in and make appointments, work on finishing up work on my desk and that way I can care for Nan another day.

You have got to be proud of this special beautiful lady. She does not complain, she just does the best she can with what is on her plate at the moment. I admire her and consider it a great privilege to be able to be with her during this challenging time. She is a real inspiration and how she beams when the kids call to talk and check up on her. Today our friend Irene left for a short cruise with her husband Ron. She called just before she left but we only got messages, my cell phone would not take the call. We hope she has a great time at sea. Our friend Art is driving home to Gilroy tomorrow from down south and we hope and pray that he will have a safe trip.

Please pray that God will guide in Nan's recovery, in getting used to being home again, for our limited finances and for God's peace to fill our hearts as we live day by day.

We are thankful!


tim and nan

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Heading home at last

Dear Family and Friends,
Finally we are heading home. We had expected to be released tomorrow morning but Nan reached me this afternoon to say they had decided to release her today. Of course for those of you who have spent time in a hospital getting out can be a very long process, this is one of those times. The process started hours ago and the soonest we will walk out is around 8:30 pm. Then Teri our nurse will meet us at the house and get us going with the hydration for the evening. Tomorrow we will get our shipment from Crescent of TPN and probably hydration as well. This hospital wants dextrose to be in the hydration and what we have at home is only saline. Nan has had a pretty good day, she is having some lightning pains in her lower groin and back which the pain meds really don't completely stop. She is really tired of the food here, she was on a full liquid diet which means no imagination at all, mushroom soup for about 7 or the 9 days. She is making good use of the Sees Candy and the 3 pills they are giving her every day to improve her GI are really starting to work. Now we hope someone has written a prescription for them so I can find them tomorrow at Longs Drugs.
I think Nan and I both have reservations about her going home. After so many days of round the clock care and protection it is sobering to be home without that help. Kent was kind enough to come this afternoon and attempt to fix the furnace. Sylvia was kindly cleaning the house and suddenly felt it getting warm. They met briefly and Kent thought it was repaired. When I got home later in the afternoon I tried to get it to work and it had failed. Kent thinks our furnace is getting old and needs replacing, however the reality of this issue is, there is no money for a new furnace. We are in dire straits right now financially, for some reason the checks which had been coming faithfully in the mail stopped last week and I have friday's payroll, AMEX which covers the business expenses, car payments and other misc. bills all looming over me. The Lord is fully aware of the challenges we face and I know He will help.
Along with the apprehension we have about Nan being at home again we also are very thrilled that it is taking place. We have faced challenge after challenge over the past 10 years and especially over the past 9 months. Now we face new ones. This evening we are facing the challenge of using a bag of hydration that is designed to hang with a pump that is designed to use bags that are filled in a vaccum.
Nan has had a quiet day with lots of rest. No nausea, controlled pain, totally lucid, back in control and feeling stronger.
I am going to stay home tomorrow with Nan but I could really use some help on tuesday with someone visiting for a portion of the day. Please let us know if you might be able to visit, play cards and keep Nan company. If not Tuesday I will have to be gone other days as well and we could use some company then too.
Once again orders are starting to come in and of course they tend to be for distant places, Atwater, Elk Grove, Oakland but we are grateful for the work. Steve has been a great help over the past 3 weeks going the second and third miles helping.

Well it is getting close to the time to leave and things are winding up here. Overall we have received excellent medical and nursing care here. Doctors have been willing to meet challenges and have helped a great deal. Nan leaves with creatines lower than they have been for over a month, potassium and magnessium closer to normal, hemoglobin in a good place and full hydration at last.

We just got the word, we can go.

Please pray that our transition will go smoothly this evening and that we can get Nan home without freezing her outside.

sending our love

tim and nan

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Day 11 and still at the Antioch Hilton

Dear Family and Friends,

It is 9:15 and Mary is here with us visiting. Nan is receiving yet another unit of blood and eating sees candy (special medicine). She is doing pretty well with numbers holding, nausea gone and quietly resting in her classy bed. She has a way of adjusting the bed so there is a little pocket she fits into and it is comfortable. She is so cute. A nurse came in today and told her how beautiful she was and how inspiring she was, very sweet and all true.

We have had a nice day of rest and friends. Bob and Carrol Sorenson drove over from Lodi arriving about 12:30. We spend a nice time together and then I went with them to Olive Garden for a late lunch. We discovered that there was a Sees candy store right behind Olive Garden. I brought her a box of nuts and chews. George and Yvonne would always bring a box of candy when Nan was recovering in the hospital and she thought that was a good tradition. She has had many pieces of medicine, I mean Nuts and Chews. Right now she is slipping in and out of sleep as the blood flows in.

Our medical situation at present appears to be stable. The potassium they have tried so hard to maintain had slipped a bit this morning so she got a bag more, then magnessium, then more hydration along with the TPN and the last of her antibiotic for something fungal. Doctors have told us that she can be released tomorrow afternoon or monday morning. However there is no TPN available until sometime on monday so we will probably not go home until the monday time frame. Nan walked this morning and although her heart rate approached 160 she did very well, had no dizzy moments and came back to a nice nap. She has been mentally alert all day and had just one brief moment of nausea and then has been better. She is feeling some very sharp pains from time to time in her abdomen which appear to be something new on the scene. We have had a run of colostomy bags breaking, we think there might be a flaw in one of the shipments. One broke just as Bob and Carrol arrived today but Nan quickly handled it.

We are so sorry to hear that Keanna has been ill yesterday and today even asking to take a nap. Meleboo has decided to be a wild child, she is their lab puppy and she has been chewing everything in sight lately, even bringing in a flower plot from the back yard and placing it on the carpet. So she has been visiting the inside of her little doggie carrier lately, one can only clean up so many messes.

Nan is munching pretzels again and found that they taste even better with some extra sea salt I brought from home. Her eyes are bright and she is definitely herself again. I cut up a lemon that Dana had sent from Houston and brought it in today in a little baggie. She asked that I bring another baggie with sea salt. She enjoyed her lemon making little pleasure noises as she ate. It was like pretty music to me.

I just walked Mary out to her car since we both parked at one end of the hospital and after 8 that door is locked so we had to walk completely around the hospital and it was spitting rain, brrrr. Mary is a precious person and Nan enjoyed her surprise visit this evening. We have had a nice day. We played quartet music this morning, then I connected to a worship service for a church in southern california where our friend Patrick Bitzer is the music minister. That was nice to see him in action and to worship with the folks there using the laptop. We have gotten very nice messages from friends today and some really wonderful snapshots from Gerry and Barbara from the party. We have them up on the wall. Our room is now complete with a walker, a wheel chair, a suitcase, the computer bag, Nan's new computer still in its box. Good thing they allow Nan a private room.

Well we are finding ourselves yawning so its time to wrap it up. I'm trying to include some photos we shot today of Nan with her visitors. Thank you Bob and Carrol and Mary for blessing us with your company!!

We are thanking God for the good care, good medicine, good condition and His peace in our room.


tim and nan

Friday, February 23, 2007

2nd Friday night in the hospital

Dear Family and Friends,
It's 10:25, our friends Jim and Marti Edwards have just left after a delightful visit, Nan is settling in for a long winters nap and I am blogging to you dear one.
Nan is much better this evening. She received a unit of blood this evening, walked with the PT guy this afternoon, sat in the recliner for hours today and in general is doing well. At this moment she is distracting me with leg exercises, moving her feet back and forth to avoid blood clots. Her right foot is swollen some and it was more swollen after she walked. She had me rub her feet this evening with the magic lotion from Marilyn. If Marilyn only knew how much we appreciate that lotion, we use it every day and sometimes several times a day. It is the best we have ever found, smells good and seems to heal the feet. Nan absolutely loves it.

This evening when Nan thought she was about to get another bowl of muchroom soup she nearly cried, it has been the same almost every night for over a week. I went to the caf and found rice for her and fresh lemons. She has been missing lemons so she was delighted to have lemons which she eats with salt. I had a salad and the rest of the rice she did not finish. I've noticed that I need to bring her more and more bottles of water now as she is really getting serious about drinking again.

Nan has consulted with several doctors today and the tentative plan is for her to be here two more days and then released which would be sunday afternoon or evening. By then they can get TPN ordered for home delivery from Crescent. The doctors have told her they think she is doing much better overall. All systems are in balance but we are still facing challenges with falling potassium and magnessium. They plan to include fairly hefty amounts of potassium in the TPN for daily use.

Tomorrow we will enjoy spending the Sabbath day together. We have Bose speakers here to hook to the laptop so we can enjoy music. Nan is at a point that if someone wants to visit she is up to it now.

This evening our friends, the Edwards came to visit. Jim is a my doctor and life long friend from college days. We have spent time with them on a house boat in Shasta Lake and love to catch up on things when we get a chance. Marti came first and brought a plant and card, beautiful on both counts, then Jim came in and we sort of had a party together. They are precious people and work very hard locally caring for their patients.

Now its time for both Nan and me to go to sleep. I was able to schedule two appraisals today in the middle of the day and was able to spend time with Nan as well. We got a wonderful surprise from Loree, Nan has had a long time dream of growing tomatoes using a straw bale of hay. Well Loree found a bale of hay today and brought it to the house, Nan is so excited about getting the hay and can't wait to get the tomatoes started growing. Thanks Loree for everything.

We feel many of our prayers have been answered tonight and we thank you for remembering Nan in your prayers. Her heart rate has dropped to a more reasonable level, her creatines are much better and she feels good now. She has some shooting pains but with the proper use of pain meds she can live with them.

So good night or morning friend,

Thanks for your caring and for your help. A special thanks to Donna and Shawn Want for shipping us a new dish for Christian broadcasting. It has arrived but so far I've not had a minute to install it. Perhaps next week will be back to a bit more normal again. Thanks so much for the dish system, we can't wait to get it working and are so thrilled to have it.

love from room 316

tim and nan

Thursday, February 22, 2007

And on and on and on....

Greetings from room 316,
This has been an interesting day to say the least. Nan sounded good on the phone this morning but by the time I arrived she was very sleepy, she slept most of the morning being only interupted for meds, vitals, doctor visits etc. Around noon she got up and into the recliner. She settled in with blankets, her robe and found a comfortable place. She fell asleep again and slept for hours. At the same time her temp was on the rise, moving from 99 to 100.2 to 102. At that point the nurses went into action, called the house doctor who ordered urine tests, blood tests and a bit of tylenol. But even before the meds began to work the fever began to fall. She is nearly normal now. Also just at the point this afternoon when we were about to take a short walk her heart rate resting was 144 so the walk was put off for another day. Her creatines had fallen to 2.8 which is quite dramatic and both potassiumand magnessium were in the normal range. She has had no nausea at all today.
This evening I brought her up a bit of tortilla soup and some pretzels which she had along with some non descript soup the cafe sent up. She also had some milk and is drinking bottled water more each day. Nan has been low energy today, preferring to sleep and lie low. Anita, the picc lady came to try to unplug her red line so blood could be drawn through it and was some what successful. She is really a very interesting person and does a great job with the picc lines. Nan has been told how the nurses are to handle her picc line but most of them try to get by without doing it right, Anita has it written on the wall and Nan just points to it and then the nurses do it right. Sort of funny to watch. We've had some very good nurses lately, attentive to Nan's needs and very caring, most are fascinated by Nan's medical adventures. None so far have ever heard of GIST before. So we have to educate each of them so they will give the proper care.
We are thankful for no nausea, for lower creatines but concerned about the higher than normal heart rate and fevers.
Both Nikki and Jason have talked with their mom, so has Sharon, Pam, Jo, Mary. When you call Nan may sound out of it sometimes but don't be put off by her voice. She is glad to hear from you and your call helps a lot.
Well as our evening winds down I want to let you know once again how much we treasure your contact with us. We are lifted by knowing you are praying for Nan and care for her.
Our prayer tonight is for lower heart rate, for freedom from fevers, for more energy and for good outcomes from the blood work.
Sometimes it seems like it will be forever before Nan can be released from the hospital.
Lord give us patience and please hurry up about it. We have so much to learn yet from our Loving Father.

So good night good friends and wonderful family, we love you all

tim and nan


Update for family and friends,
This is a quick update as of thursday morning.
After I blogged last night Nan sat up in the recliner for 2 hours, napped a bit but was comfortable and began to feel better and better. She was nausea free all evening and went to sleep with only one dose of zophram. She was animated, funny, lovely to look at and felt much much better.

I just spoke with her this morning and she had a good night in spite of a equipment breakdown of her colostomy sometime during the night. She told them she wanted cold cereal instead of the same lumpy hot cereal she has had every day for 8 days. She is doing much better and put out a normal amount of urine last night, same as at home over the past 6 months. Of course the nurses told her that it was too much and she argued with them about it.

I'm going to spend the day there with her and using my portable office, if you have time give her a call, I think you will notice the difference. she discovered Sharon had called but it was way to late to call her back last night so hopefully they can talk today. Irene called last night and got a dose of nan in the chair, much better and happier.

Lets keep praying for each other,

tim and nan

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

A ray of light at the end of the long tunnel

Dear Family and Friends,
It is 7:30, nan is taking a nap and I'm sitting here in the darkness trying to sort out my emotions. It has been a very busy day for me and a long one for Nan as she works on her recovery.

For me this day started at 5:30 this morning when I woke up with a very heavy heart, it happens every morning. As I drift in and out of restless sleep, talk to our Father and plead Nan's case with Him, seek His peace, His healing, His will, His blessings for the day sometimes certain things become clear. This morning was one of those times of clarity. I was running over Nan's health issues and gradually I focused on slightly increasing creatines, decreased urine output, increased resting heart rates. What was the common denominator, suddenly it struck. In spite of careful monitoring here at the hospital Nan was becoming to dry, becoming dehydrated again. Yesterday we were told by one of the doctors that Nan would get all the fluids she needed from the TPN bag. As I thought about that I remembered that I had been dumping nearly 1,500 cc a day from her colostomy alone. And with the increased nausea Nan has not been able to drink several bottles of water at day like usual. So I rolled over and called the hospital floor, had the nurse put a note in her file about Nan needing more fluids. I got up and worked clearing my desk, then as soon as I could I got here to the hospital. Our nurse of the day paged the hospital doctor on call and when she called back she agreed to speak to me. She listened to my arguments about Nan needing more fluids and ordered 2 liter bags to be given through IV immediatelly.

I had to leave the hospital around 11 for appointments in San Jose and then Menlo Park. When Nan called me a bit later she reported she was starting to feel better, that she was able to eat her lunch without nausea and without nausea medicine. She has continued to have a better afternoon with only one dose of nausea medicine all afternoon. One time when she called me she asked that I go to the caf and see what kind of soup they were serving in hopes that she could have something besides mushroom. Turns out she has had mushroom soup 4 nights running and she is fed up with it. Well when I arrived I found out that the caf had gone gourmet, Coconut Spice Chicken Soup. That was not what Nan had in mind, she hates coconut in any form. So I got some salad for me, pretzels for her and a new water and headed up. Her dinner had just been delivered and she was not anxious to even find out what the soup was, it was pea soup, one of her favorites so things turned out fine after all. She had a few pretzels with mustard and then settled in for a nap. She was cold so she tucked in with extra blankets, a towel around her neck. The next time she woke up she was too warm so threw off the blankets and had me turn down the thermostat. Then she decided it was time to try the recliner chair. She has now been in the recliner more than an hour and is quite comfortable. She is reluctant to walk and has talked me out of forcing her to walk once again.

I want to say a special hello to Amy, our wonderful ICU nurse from Brigham and Womens in Boston. We always pay attention when she write advice and encouragment to us. She is an amazing woman and along with others in the ICU are a special breed, advocates for the patients. Thanks Amy for keeping in touch, it is wonderful to hear from you again and sorry about the weather you are having, it might get down to 50 degrees tonight, brrrr.

Nan wants me to thank each of you for your prayers. She specifically wants me to tell you that her nausea is getting better. This evening she has only one more hurdle, two huge pills for her GI tract, last night we tried them with applesause but that did not work so tonight she will try to take them directly and see if she can get them down. As you might imagine Nan is worn out from all the things, meds, days in the bed, that she has gone through. At this point there is no talk of when she will be released to home. I can only pray that it will be at the right time when she is ready and is feeling better. Of concern to me tonight is her heart rate. It is ranging from 122 to 139 this evening and that is when she is basically at rest. I'm not sure what will bring it down to a more normal 100 to 115 for her. Can we place her heart in God's hands this evening asking for His help and healing?

Tomorrow I am going to spend most of my time here with her in the room. I have a local appraisal to do here in Antioch and several that I can write up while being with her. She has promised that we will walk in the morning, it will have to be short walks due to her heart rate off the charts.

So tonight we are grateful for diminished nausea and for time in the recliner. For a different soup for dinner and for good care from todays nurse, Christine. She told us she has a 13 month old baby and of course can't wait to get home to see her. She hardly takes breaks and is so careful about giving excellent care.

So we thank God for a safe day, for a bit of recovery and for excellent care overall, for hydration and for less nausea.

love from room 316

tim and nan

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

7 days and counting

Dear Family and Friends,
Its 10:15, Nan is falling asleep waiting for me to help her do the dressing for her incision wound. A CSI rerun is on but she is not really watching it. Earlier this evening we had a very nice surprise when Jason called to say he was on his way here. His work today took him to Oakhurst. When I heard he was there I asked him to take a photo for me of a house I could not find for an appraisal. He bought a throw away camera, Loree and Scott helped us find directions to the property and Jason found it, shot the photo and I have the camera already with the much needed photo. Jason spent the evening with his mom and finalized plans for a trip to Dallas / Fort Worth next week using the laptop and the new data card. Nan enjoyed talking to him and catching up with his busy life. He reported that Jo is starting to have a bit more tummy these days and is doing very well with her pregnacy.

I just walked Jason out to his car and he headed home, I came back to the room to blog and then I'll go home soon. Nan has had a low key day with nausea dominating. The nurses move from zophram to compozine to phenergen. All help for awhile but the nausea keeps coming back. We have a very sweet and good nurse this evening with a big heart for patients. Her name is Christine and she is really good.

We have seen kidney and infectious doctors today. They are watching white cells in her urine right now and if there are too many then they are going to go back to a special antibiotic. I see no evidence that Nan is going to be released soon. I think they would look at things a lot different if she was not having nausea so much. I long for her to come home but I also agree with her that to go home before things are right would be a big mistake, remember UCSF.

I went to Stockton first today after writing 3 appraisals and getting them out. Jean, my writer had done a great job getting the basics done. I saw a cute house in Weston Ranch, then to the MLS office to pick up new access keys, then to Tracy for a construction inspection, then to the house for some quick work and then back to the hospital to spend quality time with Nan. She has been able to keep down the limited meals they bring but tonight when the nurse tried to mix the contents of two huge pills with applesause it was too much and Nan lost it. Not sure how we are going to get the important ingredients in those pills into Nan's system, they are huge and impossible for her to take.

Tomorrow I will be going to San Jose and Menlo Park, Oakland and then back here to the hospital.

Nan looks good and aside from the nausea her numbers and general health is pretty good. The creatins were around 3 today and with more hydration the numbers would be less I think.

I read the CT scan radiology report today for the past three scans and mostly could not understand what is being said. I think the report was saying that not much has changed in the past 5 or 6 months. Now I will ship all three cd's to Boston to see what they think.

Please pray for our dear Nan this evening and tomorrow morning, pray for GI calm, for no more nausea and for healing and recovery. God can help and we are begging him to do so.

Thanks for the emails and cards, one from Carol and one from my sister Sibyl. Nan read them eagerly this evening and was touched by both.

So we sign off for another day,

love from room 316,

tim and nan
ps Jason, thanks for coming to visit! Hope your trip home was safe and quick.

Monday, February 19, 2007

6 Days in the Antioch Hilton (Delta Sutter Hospital)

Dear Family and Friends,
Nan is slipping in and out of a nap right now. She has had a fairly rough day. Pain, nausea and a general sense of not feeling well. However some progress has been made. Nan's numbers are within proper range now and an infectious disease doctor removed her from all antibiotics this afternoon. We think without the antibiotics she will begin to feel better. They have also introduced a pill which causes the growth of good bugs in her GI replacing the bad ones caused by the antibiotics.

Nikki and Keanna came to visit today, Keanna brought a picture she had created for her Grammy and it is great. We played hide and go seek, I walked out to the car with her to get her fairy toys. She led me the entire way, pushed the buttons in the elevator, made the right turns and we found the car. As she and Nikki left she called back by the nurses desk, Grammy I love you, they were charmed by this little angel.

We talked to Sharon this evening and she is going to have minor surgery soon, it should help her feel much better. Sharon was heading to bed having had a full day. Jason checked in with us as well as did Mary, Pam. I talked to ARt this evening. He and Connie drove to Indio today to spend time in their southern home for a few days. We are glad they arrived safely.

So this evening we once again come asking that you remember Nan, Our immediate issues are this pesky nausea, once we get this handled then Nan is in better condition. Just now they brought in the new pill for her to take for her GI tract, this morning it was a tiny pill and now it is two huge pills that Nan is afraid to even try to take in her present touchy state. So tomorrow we will solve this issue, why a tiny pill this morning and two huge ones tonight? Mnnn.

We send our good night wishes to you and thank you for your interest and prayers in Nan's behalf.


tim and nan

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Sunday night, calm, improving,

Dear Family and Friends,
This evening is certainly better than last night. Nan has fallen asleep after a day that started sort of rough and improved as time passed. Our dear friend Mary who trained Nan in the travel business and has become a very close friend came to visit this morning. Her time with us was such a lift and she was able to stay with us for several hours. Since Nan was vomiting they put her back to soft liquids so she has had broth today which she managed fine. After Mary left I brought in our portable recliner and we both took a long nap. Then I set up the laptop and checked emails, starting working an appraisals. Nan looked over longingly at the recliner so I vacated and she got up and sat in the chair for about 30 minutes. She finally tired of being in the chair so we washed her up, changed the incision bandage and she settled in for the night. Now they are drawing blood to check potassium again.

Nan started TPN this afternoon which was a relief. We also had a visit from the the kidney specialist, he made great sense and took enough time to listen to our situation. He is running tests of the colostomy output this evening and is hoping that the run of antibiotics is over. he wants to start Nan on a medicine which replaces the destroyed good bugs in her GI tract. He also wants her to use the special yogurt for two weeks to see if the GI will start working better so she can absorb more. Of course with a new doctor coming into the situation it may mean Nan has to stay longer in the lovely hospital.

Our nurse today is a guy and he is very attentive, He is Elmer and of course I can only remember his name by thinking Fudd first, makes me laugh inside and Nan laugh outside when she sees me thinking when he is in the room.

Nan got to talk to Nikki, Jason, Sharon, Dana, Art today. Her cell phone stays warm since she keeps it tucked next to her hip so it won't fall out of the bed. When it rings one can hardly hear it.

I had the privilege of talking with Karen Cress, our pastor friend who now lives in Denver. She is one of the prayer warriors and is always interesting to talk to. She has such a love of the Lord and a frustration with the direction many churches are heading, she is doing a good work to help people do a better job of sharing Jesus in their lives.

At this point I am heading home, I'm tired but not discouraged like I was last night before George called. I just got to talk to Art who is driving to their other home in Indio tomorrow morning with his wife connie.

We got word that Glen Conner, a long time friend lost his father yesterday afternoon. He has suffered for some time but was a giant man of faith over the years. He will be missed and our positive thoughts and prayers are for Glen and Joyce this evening.

Now its time to head to bed. Nan is slipping in and out of sleep as they keep coming in for blood, stool samples, urine samples, you know the routine when you are in the hospital. They give you a little blood and then take it all out over the next few days to see if you need more blood, yikes.

Please continue to keep Nan in your prayers. From what I know she is doing better and may be allowed to leave the hospital soon.

We write with love for each of you,

tim and nan

Saturday, February 17, 2007


Quick update on tonights blog. While Nan was sleeping my cell rang, it was George from Tracy, he had read the blog and thought I might need to hear from a friend. I quickly left the room and went to a visitors waiting area and we talked for about 50 minutes. What a blessing that call was, helped so much to just get a positive perspective from a very good friend.

When I went back to the room Nan woke and said she was feeling much better, nausea had passed, fever was down, she looked and sounded much better. I hooked up some new drain bags and we said our goodnights and I came home much happier and relieved.

Seems the combo of some dilatude and phenergan worked the trick, nice to know for the future.

Good night and thanks George for your call.


Sabbath evening - not so good

Dear Family and Friends,
I am writing from Nan's hospital room where she is not feeling so well this evening. She is toying with a low grade fever, feels cold, is on the edge of nausea and in general is not just right. She is coughing which is disturbing.
We have had good news today re: creatines which are now 2.9, potassium is now 3.2 which is within normal range, hemoglobin has dropped and so she is going to receive a unit of blood this evening when they can locate a unit which matches her anti bodies. When they came for the blood draw they only drew out one tube. We told them they would need several tubes, they said no, they only needed one, well several hours later they were back for several more vials of blood, oh how we wish they would listen, we actually do know what we are saying having been in hospital rooms for many, many nights. There seems to be a disrespect for patients opinions and suggestions.

I am feeling so concerned and down this evening. We enjoyed having a visit from Dolly this morning and during that time Nan felt pretty good. She had a tiny breakfast of cream of wheat, a lunch and then dinner tonight but started feeling poorly mid afternoon. We had hoped she would be feeling well enough to be able to go home tomorrow evening but if she is not well then she needs to be right here. The house seems so quiet and lonely when I go home for the night and then I wake with my mind going every which direction trying to sort out possible helps for Nan. I talk to God in the early morning, wrestle really, seeking HIs help and His healing. Finally I just jump out of bed and head into the day. I find life pretty challenging right now to stay optomistic and helpful to Nan, I want her to have my best, she deserves it.

How I wish we were home tonight, sitting in our recliners, dogs nearby, fire burning and watching some rerun. For those of you at home with your loved ones I urge you to treasure what you have every day in every way.

At the moment Nan is getting phenagren to help with the nausea, her temperature was 99 which is dropping from the prior 100.7. She feels lousy, poor sweet lady, we had planned to walk and then play dominos but all of that is out now. She just does not feel up to it. I find it very difficult to walk out the door of her room when she is not feeling well, it is hard to leave her in others hands when she has been in my hands for 37 years.

We had a delightful call from Nikki this afternoon. She, Steve, Keanna and friend Kevin were enjoying playing on the beach at MBA. The weather was perfect and they were having a great time. Later they will hook up with Jason and Jo for a bit and then head home. We are so glad that our children are enjoying themselves today. They work very hard and it is great when they can lighten up and simply play. Nikki said Keanna was enjoying herself so much playing in the sand and with Mela boo.

Nan is growing sleepy fast now that she has both phenergan and 1 mg of dilaudid for pain. Both can make one sleepy and I think sleep will be her best friend right now. I just wish I knew where the fever suddenly came from, where the nausea came from, what mystery is going on inside that has not been discovered and treated.

I took the time this morning to unhook the bose speakers connected to my desk computer at home and bring them here so we could play music today in her room. It worked perfectly and we enjoyed the quiet sounds of southern gospel and Sandi Patti. I also brought her a gatoraide and green olives but she has not felt well enough to have either so I guess I'll take them back home.

We know that her kidneys are working better now. Nan woke at 4 this morning in pain, her back was really on fire. She discovered that her right drain bag was overfilled. This is 500 cc compared to 150 cc for the entire night when we were at home. So I brought drain bags for tonight so she won't have that same problem again. It appears that she is finally fully hydrated which is a real blessing.

Well once again the time has come to wrap this up. We are so thankful that Dolly Vogel was able to come and visit today. She read encouraging stories, prayed with us and shared about her life and work. We were deeply helped by her coming.

As you might imagine we are growing pretty fatigued of being in hospitals and dealing with the logistics attached. I try to be with Nan as much as I can, we get better care when we keep an eye on what is taking place and ask the right questions. For example this wing is short staffed enough that it might be 30 minutes before someone comes after Nan pushes the call button. We waited three days before finally insisting that the bed linen being changed. Not really complaining, just a fact of life.

Please oh please keep Nan in your prayers tonight. Please ask for strength, healing, well being and for God's timing regarding when Nan gets to go home.

Thank you for your love and prayers,

tim and nan

Friday, February 16, 2007

Friday night and we are still in the hospital

Dear Family and Friends,
Well we are still here, we are relaxing in the room after a combined meal of hospital food and caf food I brought up to Nan. She had white rice, mushroom soup, pretzels with mustard, ice tea with lemon, jello and custard. Plus a big of red pepper. The nurse comes in a frowns since someone put Nan on a low residual diet for no reason. She eats everything at home so why not here.
Nan was happy to get to eat since she spent the entire day without food or water waiting for a morning CT scan which turned into a 2 pm affair. No problems. The feeling was that she was here and we needed a new scan so do it. We hope that the oncologist turned in the request for TPN to the home health care people but we doubt it. The doctor who came by today said Nan had a sort of fungus infection in her nephrostomy and is treating it with 3 days of antibiotics, well there goes getting out tomorrow or the next day.
After I arrived today we went for a short walk and a brief sit in the visitors room. The nurses came running since Nan's heart rate was up. They just wanted her to get back to bed. Mmmm, how do you get exercise and not walk?

Today I started early and finished disassembling the crib to transport to Jason and Jo's home, then I went to the motorhome and it was very very dead. I took the little miracle device I got for Christmas which jump starts. After I figured out how to make it work I got the generator started in the motorhome and then the engine would start. Drove the beast home and parked it in the driveway, then rushed in to prepare for a 10 am appraisal in Castro Valley, a one hour trip. Arrived at 10:01 and enjoyed a visit with a CCU nurse, inspected her townhome, shot comps and then headed back. By that time I was very weak and very hungry so found an In and Out place where they made a cheese sandwich for me. Then to Ruby Hill where the average sized home is over 4,000 sf. It is amazing to drive around in this area with hundreds of homes, all huge and all worth over a million dollars, even the maids drive Mercedes I think. Then home to check the mail, yes there was a check, then make the house payment using the phone, then to the bank for a deposit to cover the house payment, then to post office to pick up a special letter from IRS, would you believe, they want money!
Finally I got to head this way, to the hospital. To radiology with the past two ct scans so radiologist could have something to compare to, then up to the room and finally I got to see the beautiful patient. Nan was doing well but had found out that her potassium was still low. Hospital doctor stated the obvious, food passes through Nan so rapidly that her body does not get a chance to absorb what it needs. So something will have to be added to suppliment her food intake.

We are very ready to have Nan come home but we wait until it is right. She has fielded many phone calls today and loved everyone of them. She has had a good day inspite of being starved for half of it.

We had hoped to go to Jason and Jo's in the morning but it does look like it at this point. It promises to be a perfect weekend. The high point of today for Nan was a visit from Keanna and Nikki as they were heading to build a bear in Walnut Creek. They brought a cute little basket with a tiny pug inside, cute, very cute.

Well I'm wrapping it up for the evening. Please pray for Nan, that she will grow stronger, wound will heal, that she will have peace and a good night.

Sending our love,

Tim and Nan

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Doing well

Dear Friends and Family,

Thursday evening, Nan is on the phone with Sharron, has talked to Dana, Nikki, Jason, Irene and others I think.

Events of the day include: a call from Dr. Bergsland, UCSF oncologist. She urged Nan to stick with the local oncology team and she would be a back up person when needed. She had looked at the Nov. 30 CT scan, said the left side appeared stable but she thinks there might be something on the right side near the skin surface. She is urging Nan to get a CT scan here at the hospital while she is here and it has been enough time. Nan mentioned that to her doctor but did not get much of a response. Dr. B also wanted to know how Nan was taken off TPN and so Nan told her that the nutritionist decided that she could do OK without TPN. Everyone agrees now that Nan needs at least partial TPN for the forseable future. Her kidneys are working better but so far we have not gotten anyone to tell us todays creatines. We are curious.

I stayed here in Nan's room until late last night, then home to bed, then up at 7 this morning to tackle a stack of work, finally at around 11 I had a clear desk and could shower and come to the hospital. I was here for about an hour and then reluctantly left for an appointment in Daly City, near SF. After that I headed back home but caught traffic. So I got a chance to talk to Art, Nikki, Nan several times and made it back to the hospital. I went first to the caf to see if there was anything Nan might like, there was. So I brought up two bowls of potato soup and pretzels, ice tea and a hot chocolate for me. I also got a salad. We ate and then they delivered her tray which had more soup. Nan has not been getting as much food as she can eat so far here and tonight we finally got some food into her.

This evening I am going to go home early, grab the fiero, go get the motorhome and drive it home, disassemble the crib in the guest room and load it into the motorhome. We really don't expect to see Nan released until friday evening at the earliest. So we might drive down to Jason and Jo's on Sabbath morning getting there in time to have lunch with them. We had hoped to have Melaboo with us, the cute little doggy that Steve and Nikki have. But they cancelled their plans to go to San Diego after all and intend to do fun things closer home. I know Steve had been looking forward to this trip and I'm sorry they had to change plans.

Nan is pretty stable this evening but is looking forward to seeing home soon.

So we send out love and thank you for your prayers.

Stay tuned for more upcoming events!!


tim and nan

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Calm and doing better, real progress

Dear Friends and Family,

Finally it is evening and I'm here with a very relaxed and nice looking Nan. She is slowly eating some pretzels I brought in, trying to get rid of the taste of the liquid potassium they are trying to see if it will help her.

Nan's creatines have dropped from 4.2 to 3.7 this morning. That is a big drop and her urine bags are filling with beautiful clear liquid. She has eaten three meals today without throwing up at all. She has talked to many people today on her cell, had conversations with doctors and is doing better. Her vitals are good and they have been throwing antibiotics at her using the picc line, so far she does not seem to be negatively affected by them.

Our day started for me at 6 am. I wrote three appraisals at home after building a little fire for the doggies. Then I traveled to Brentwood to see Keanna's school chapel program. Nan had wanted to see the show so I took the camcorder and shot it for her and Nikki. After the show I drove to Antioch to see Nan. I showed her some of the program and we shared a few quiet moments and then it was time for me to hit the road. How I hated to leave her on Valentines day but I did leave her with a card that said it all.

I drove to Coursegold which was about 2 hours plus, finally found the house that eluded me last time I was there, enjoyed inspecting this 10 acre ranch with barns, view and 14 little doggies, 3 birds, chickens, geese, a stream, trees and a pond. Then to Oakhurst which is almost in Yosemite to shoot comps, the last one I never found and I spent 45 minutes looking, bummer. During the day I got to talk to Nan several times and she was doing well. She had a few things for me to bring from home and reminded me when I got near home. So I left Oakhurst about 6 pm fortified by french fries and apple dippers and a diet coke. The computer said I had a 3 hour trip home but as I drove it keep lowering the total time down to just over 2 hours. At home I found eager dogs, mail with no checks, booooo, the pills bottles Nan needed (hospital rules), alaska soxs she loves, pretzels from the vending machine in ER.

WE are enjoying our new data card from Sprint. It is about as fast as DSL. Brought in 103 emails this evening in about 5 minutes when I turned it on. Not bad and $20 less per month.

Nan does not know when she will be released. We are not pushing anyone, tomorrow cultures will be back which will let them know more about bugs that might be growing, her white cell count was down today which is good and may indicate that the infections are being controlled.

We still hope to spend the weekend at Jason and Jo's house but that will depend on how Nan is and when she is released.

Tonight we want to thank you again for your special prayers in Nan's behalf. Her condition was very serious when we came in and is improving by the hour.

So we send our love to you, thanks for your prayers and for your help, ecards and emails.


tim and nan

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

In the hospital and getting stronger

Dear Friends and Family,

This has been an interesting 24 hours. Nan and I both appreciate the many expressions of prayer for Nan last evening. She really needed it badly. Nan had a night of every two hours being sick with large volumes of fluid, 400 to 500 cc each time. We debated going to ER each time this happened but would lay back down and try again. I could not sleep, so anxious with worry and I had an appraisal that was needed by morning so at 2 am I got up, went down to the office and completed the report and emailed it out. Then back to be with Nan. At 3.45 she was sick again and we decided to both come down to the recliners to see if that would help. She settled in, I built a small fire and we both slept until about 7 this morning. Then while she still dozing I started working the phones trying to figure out if a picc line had been ordered at Sutter Delta Hospital in Antioch. Finally I got Anita's cell number and she called me back to say she had heard nothing from SF. So I reached Scott in SF and he then called Anita, set up the picc line and I reminded him about crescent home health care hydration deliver and support. Later in the morning a lady called from the office to say Crescent had been contacted and that they were on board, then Crescent called to confirm a delivery of IV fluid would arrive on our front porch this afternoon or evening. We get our nurse back and Nan will have 24 hour hydration to help her kidneys function correctly.

We arrived here at ER at 11 and before to long we were whisked away to have the picc line installed. Anita went right to work and 45 minutes later she was done and Nan owned a nice new picc line. Then back to wait about an hour for a room and then another hour for the doctor, all very worth the wait. We had a great doctor who looked very much like the evil genius in Princess Bride, short, bald and brilliant. He has Nan on a combo of saline, potassium and dextrose. This is her second liter of fluids and her kidneys are starting to wake up and put out urine. Its a great sight to see them working again. Her creatines were 4.2 today and that is the highest we have seen since Boston when at the worst they went to 4.7 briefly. Nan is feeling better already and has not thrown up since arrived at the hospital. In spite of her nausea she has faithfully kept trying at her water bottle and has had a 1/2 liter of water today.

She was given the choice, stay or go home tonight. She decided to stay for the night because here she can get the balance of input she needs to get her back to a better place medically. The doctor told us that it was good we got here when we did, thanks Sylvia for your urging, yes we should have come last night.

We have talked to both Jason and Nikki several times today keeping them in the loop as to mom's condition. We were not that sure about coming to this hospital due to past performances but the care today could not be better. The hospital has recently been remodeled and we were put in a quiet corner room with plenty of space, comfortable bed and temperature is just right. We brought a down blanket from the car and its has been just right for her all day. Soon we will move to a room somewhere out of the ER and later I will head home. I am using a new data card by Sprint, one that Troy uses in Texas and it is so much faster than the prior one I had from Cingular, night and day.

Thank you special friends for praying for Nan last evening. It was a very stressful evening and knowing that we were being lifted by our prayer warriors was comforting. What good friends you have been over these many months and hopefully someday we can begin to repay you with our kindness.

Nan had hoped to be able to attend a special chapel service at Keanna's school in the morning. However she will not be out of here by then but I plan to to and video tape so she can see Keanna and her friends in action. Nan has not given up on our trip this weekend to see Jason and Jo and it will depend on how she feels.

It is now nearly 7 pm and we hope to make the move to a room pretty soon. Nan has missed her dinner but we might be able to find some broth or something tempting. Perhaps hot tea.

Tomorrow I am scheduled to travel to the Coursegold area to see a house that I could not find the last time I was there. Plus shoot some comp photos for a place in Oakhurst. Then home to mom. Mary has agreed to take her home from the hospital if she goes during the day.

Well I'm going to sign off for the evening, we are enjoying time together and Nan is much much better.

Thanks for your prayers and love,

tim and nan

Monday, February 12, 2007

In trouble, really need your prayer power

Dear Friends and Family,

I'm sitting in Nan's recliner tonight, she is resting upstairs and facing real challenges. On Sat I emailed Dr. Meng regarding Nan's low urine output, more emails back and forth on sunday and he agreed in principle to putting a picc line back in her arm, to back up hydration to get more fluid to the kidneys and to a blood test on monday.

We went to Brentwood this morning for blood test, the lady did a very good job with little pain to Nan. Dr. had asked for Stat so in 4 hours they had the results and so did we. Mixed results, creatines were 3.74, very high and has to be addressed. Hematocrit was 33, highest it has been since Boston due to the recent transfusions, white count was up a bit, potassium was down a bit. Nan says a nurse from Dr. Mengs office called this afternoon to tell her the results and to say eat a banana for the potassium.

Our big problem is this, with two high power antibiotics going in pill form Nan's GI tract is in rebellion. We have had this before. So everything she eats or drinks comes right back up in a little while. We just tried Gatoraide a few minutes ago and it stayed put for 30 minutes, then back up with a vengence. So we have a situation where the only for sure outcome is dehydration since she can't keep fluids in, high volume out colostomy, almost nothing out kidneys, no food can stay in so no nutrition.

As I was driving home tonight I tried to reach someone at Sutter Delta Hospital to see if the picc line had been ordered yet, could not get to anyone who knew, I tried Dr. Mengs office, got message machines but no answers. I am changing my schedule for tomorrow and staying nearby so I can take her to get the picc line when they call and to urge Crescent to get iv fluids out here as soon as there is a picc line to use. Also I am asking if the antibiotics can be changed to be used through the picc line instead of Nan's GI. So in a couple days if all goes well we will have Nan in a much better place, fluids going in, antibiotes going in the picc line and hopefully her system will respond with better creatines, calmer stomach and once again being able to eat whole food. I could have guessed that this would be the outcome but the medical people seemed so confident that all would be well when we checked out of the hospital. They are good people but don't know Nan as well as she and I do.

Tonight Nan is resting, just trying to lie low so as not to upset her touchy system. She told me that she has been able to sip a tiny bit of water a little at a time during the day and the pinch test on her arm does not seem to show dehydration yet but we know it is coming.

Nan is not unhappy, just does not feel well right now. She has so much courage and a strong faith that things do work out per God's plan. Yet this is so hard for her. One day she is up and doing a bit of shopping, the next flat on her back in distress. The blood workup only confirmed what we both expected, how can the creatines not go up when there is only 10% of the normal meager output.

We seek your prayers tonight, that God will help the orders to get to Anita at Sutter Delta and that she will be able to find time to insert the picc line, then that orders will get to Crescent Home Health and that the supplies can get here quickly. I'll drive anywhere to facilitate things but I think they have to use their own delivery system.

I really appreciate Loree and Steve helping keep clients happy. They have both worked very hard this past 10 days. We also pray that the checks will continue so we can make payroll, house payment, car payment, health insurance, now over $1,000 a month. I tell you, I would never have believed that we could cope with as much stress as we do, yet we have happy moments and are very grateful that Nan is home in her own bed with Starr and Moomoo watching over her.

So my friends, join with Nan and me in prayer please. Include Sharon and Pam too as they are both battling health issues right now.


tim and nan

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Sunday evening, going well

Dear Friends and Family,

After yesterday with its good and bad moments today has been a relaxing improvement. Nan has had a good day for the most part. She got up early this morning and came down before the fire was even burning. The room quickly warmed as the wood caught and she snuggled under her heated cover and with her viberating slippers. We had breakfast of cereal and bananas and a hot drink, mocha at last. Then I worked a bit sorting things on my desk and she watch TV, talked to people and rested a bit.

Mid morning Nan decided she would like to go out today, Longs called with yet another prescription ready so we dressed, no small task when you have 4 bags to find homes for in your clothes and went to Brentwood, then to Tracy to do some shopping for a combined valentines and mothers day gift, also Olive Garden for soup and salad. Her tummy was upset with the food and she struggled a bit. Finally we headed home and she was tired. When we got home she ordered some warm apple pie with ice cream and when that was done she began to seriously consider a nap in her bed. I rubbed her feet for awhile which she seems to really enjoy, ask Pam or Carol Peden if Nan likes her feet rubbed, mainly she does not like you to stop once you start. She headed up and just then Jason checked in with a nice call and Mary came to visit. Mary went up and stretched out on the bed talking to Nan and then in a little while she went to enjoy her family and Nan went to sleep. Nikki also called before she drifted off to sleep, reporting that she and Keanna enjoyed the zoo today, what fun on such a sunny day.

Now I am supposed to be working and Nan is resting. Later she will come down and we'll have another small meal of something which appeals to her. We have discovered that small serving are the way to go, they stay down better. Tomorrow morning we will head to Brentwood to try to persuade someone to take blood for Dr. Meng so he can know how things are shaking out.

Nan has read the paper, watched some old time TV, read her emails including one from Bob and Carrol with some very good advice regarding funds to help Cancer patients. She has snoozed, she has walked, she has shopped and through it all she has felt pretty good. She is such a kick to be with, always has been, loves to be in charge, to plan, to make things happen. She enjoyed a long talk with Sharon this morning and that always makes her feel good, then she got to talk to Dana and catch up on the trials and tribs of being a grandmother to 4 darling little kids. My sister Sibyl called from Ohio today and it was very nice to get to catch up with her on what she is doing. She sent some very cute valentines to us and we really enjoyed them.

Well now I go work and tomorrow I will be out in the field from about 11 to about 4 pm, a great time to call Nan or come by if you are in the area. I hate to leave her and we have some precious people nearby to help if needed, LeAnn and Loree both are great about helping.

Our prayer concerns remain the same, leaking, high creatines, little urine output from kidneys but we also have much to thank the Lord for, a good feel good day, good rest, good food and good friends and family. How we love all of you, if you could only know!

We send our love,

Tim and Nan

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Tough day

Dear Friends and Family,

Good evening, we are finally settling in recliner next to recliner. Fire has turned to embers, Nan has just completed her round of drugs including two antibiotics, Gleevec, Rapamune, Zyprexa. We are glad to be home but it has been a rough day for Nan. She woke and lost her cookies twice this morning. Once was during breakfast when her first bites of cereal did not stay down.

We are very concerned since she only was able to create 250 cc of urine last night. Usually she puts out about 1000 or more during those same hours. Today she has only made about 200 or 300 cc s for the entire day. It appears that most of the water that Nan drinks goes out her colostomy instead of going through her kidneys. I have written an email to Dr. Meng at UCSF asking if we could possibly have some fluids to give Nan through the iv to keep her kidneys working. He is considering it. He was so kind and responded to each of my emails today.

Nan has had a low key day but spent most of it in her recliner. She had cereal and banana for breakfast, alvocado egg rolls for lunch, rice and chicken soup for dinner a few minutes ago. She has also had grape juice, cranberry juice, and water and water and water. She has been so faithful to drink even during the night. After I took Keanna to Sabbath School we came back home and Keanna watched over grammy while I went to Longs to turn in prescriptions from UCSF. Then Nan called to tell me her colostomy bag had failed so I raced home. But Nikki was already here with her mom. Nan just needed some supplies and took care of everything. I got the fire going stronger so she would be warmer. Keanna had continually checked with her grammy to see if she was OK, so cute. Nikki sorted Keannas toys updating and sorting them as she worked. Keanna's corner looks great tonight thanks to her work. Thanks Nikki!

I think it is hard to come home from the hospital. While we are there every health concern can be met quickly and fixed but now we are so far away and it feels like we are at risk. Both Nan and I really need your prayers tonight. Nan needs God's courage, His healing, His mercy and His loving arms wrapped around her. Right now as I look over she has fallen asleep in her chair, tired and fearful.

We found out today that since we are no longer going to be getting the TPN we also lose our home health nurse Teri who is so wonderful. Seems they only send the nurse if we are getting tpn. That was a terrible blow to Nan. So now we will drive to Brentwood to a lab on monday morning and have blood drawn. The reports will be faxed to the doctors at UCSF. We lose our person caring nurse. I appealed today to Dr. Meng that Nan be allowed to have IV fluids and if they decide to do that then we will need the care of Terri again possibly.

So we once again coming begging, please remember Nan in your prayers tonight.


Tim and Nan

Friday, February 09, 2007

Home again

Dear Friends and Family,

Well we are finally home again. The doctors had consulted the results of the blood work taken this morning, did some final doses of IV potassium and antibiotic, began to get results from cultures taken on tuesday and wednesday and decided that Nan could safely be released. A big factor was todays creatine, a measure of the kidneys ability to remove toxins. Yesterday it was 3.6, the day before 3.7 and today was 3.2. They were encouraged by the trend. Nan has continued to eat well. She had a huge breakfast, huge for her standards and a good lunch, lots to drink and is tolerating the food well. She aware that to stay off TPN she will have to continue to do her best to consume a variety of foods to get her nutrition. Nan likes the idea of being off TPN because it allows her to begin to consider a bit of travel which is near and dear to her heart. She wants to go spend time in Texas so much so this is a positive step and we hope to be able to vacation a bit in a couple months.

A nurse practiciner, whose name escapes me, was very instrumental in getting us ready to leave. She wrote prescriptions for pain meds, antibiotics and after more cultures are fully grown tomorrow they will be calling in even more antibiotics. Nan was growing several different bugs in her urinary tract and most can be treated with a variety of antibiotics. In an effort to take away all possible sources of infection they did remove her picc line this afternoon. It seems strange to see Nan's arm with no picc line. She has had one of one kind or another for nearly a year now. This means that blood work on mondays will have to be done with a new stick each time. And any future transfusion will require an iv to be inserted yet they feel strongly that Nans arm needs to be free of a picc line for a couple weeks just in case there is infection there.

We received very good care at Mt Zion UCSF. The routines are a bit more relaxed than at other hospitals, they are willing to allow a patient to sleep most of the night without interuption and make a real effort to keep things quiet, low light and soothing. We did have one male nurse that really could not be bothered with mundane things like emptying the colostomy bag but he talked a nice talk and was interesting. Our nurse practiciner is from Boston, loves the people she works with here but is only filling in while the original nurse practiciner is on maternity leave and that is over soon. So she may return to Boston to work and we gave her Dr. Steeles card, he is the main urologist at Brigham and Womans in Boston and the person she would be working with. She was glad for the personal contact and knowledge about him. We think he is great, gave us good attention last spring.

When we finally were checked out of the hospital Mom wanted to stop at Crate and Barrels to look at a few things, using the GPS we found one downtown in SF. Then we stopped at the new Cheese Cake Factory in Pleasanton and ordered out some alvocado egg rolls for nan and a cheese sandwich for me which we ate in the car, then home to find Nan's heated cover was freshly laundered and dried and ready to supply warmth. Thank you Loree for yet one more kind thing you have done this week. Nan has been nodding off in her chair and she has her viberating / heating shoes on that Nikki gave her for Christmas. I build a little fire and Steve had delivered tons of kindling for the fire, great stuff, almost lights its self.

In retrospect we are thankful for the way this week has turned out. By the time we met Dr. Bergsland Nan had several negative things going on, heart rate was 137 resting, creatines were 3.4, there were several areas of infection slowly growing, she was very tired and worn out. The doctor wisely admitted her and placed her under Dr. Meng's care. He is the head urologist and outstanding, kind, retentive of facts and faces and proactive. He has a team of other disciplines which he relies on for input, the nutritionist who interviewed Nan and raised the idea of quitting TPN, the IR team who replaced the nephrostomy tubes, a pharmacist who goes to great lengths to make sure any drugs used don't overload the weak kidneys or have a negative interaction with Gleevec or Rapamune. Also a biology department who searches for bugs and trys to identify them for treatment. Thats why I appreciate a teaching hospital, a big hospital, you tend to get the best in their fields and they have lots of exposure to difficult cases and are not threatened by someone like Nan who has experienced many challenges medically over the past 10 years. From now on copies of the blood work reports will be faxed to Mr. Meng and Dr. Bergsland directly so they can know what is going on in Nan's body and can quickly to it.

It is so good to be home now. I took Nan up a few minutes ago and changed the dressing and tucked her in. She had been in bed enough that her feet are getting little sores on the sides of her ankles so we are trying a pillow under them. Nan was asleep by the time I left the room and Starr is so happy to have her home again.

Nan arranged for me to take Keanna in the morning to SS in Tracy. If Nan wants me to do it then I am sure willing because I like to see Keanna interact with the Bible Stories and the other children. I think Nan will probably sleep in, she sure deserves it.

I thank our Heavenly Father for the privilege of once again having Nan home. I thank Him for His direction and good care and I certainly praying that He will continue to guide in her recovery.

I also thank you, Art, Sharon, Dana, Irene, Nikki, Jason, Jo, Loree, Mary, Pam and others I might have missed like Jan for their encouraging calls this week. And of course Nan's favorite phone buddy, Keanna. When Nan told her tonight on the phone that I was taking her to Sabbath School in the morning, she said, that would be nice. Cute.

Sending our love,

Tim and Nan


Thursday, February 08, 2007

What a big day today

Dear Friends and Family,

Nan has made real progress today! She started her day with a broken colostomy bag at 2 am. Kind nurses helped get things in order and she went back to sleep. Doctors told her around 7 this morning that her surgery would be at 11 am. We also learned that her creatines were high, 3.7 yesterday and 3.6 today. We learned that her new picc line is a possible source of infection. Nan has had a number of different kinds of antibiotics today along with several bags of possasium (sp). There is pretty much consensus that it would be good for Nan to eat real food, not have TPN.

Nan was not allowed any water or food after midnight last night and was hungry and thirty this morning. As the day progressed the time for the surgery time was moved later. At 2:10 transportation arrived to take her to IR. Jason was in SF today to visit and school to promote MBA and was able to come over and join us. He came around 12:30 and stayed until about 5:30. It was so good to have him with us and to have someone to talk to when they finally took Nan into IR at 3 pm. She received fairly rough treatment but the outcome was good. This time they did not put her to sleep so she had to endure being on her tummy for over an hour. Shortly after they brought her back to the room she began to search for food. They had saved the sandwich that was supposed to be lunch. She asked for it and amazingly she ate every bite of it. An hour later they brought dinner and she devoured it and had me go to the caf and get her more food. This evening she has had several hot teas, lots of water, cookies, pretzels, you name it and she kept it all down.

Mr. Max Meng came by the room and laid out the plan, if Nan's caloric input is adequate then she will be allowed to go home, that is if all the labs look good as well. In the future we will be having the weekly blood work report faxed to both Dr. Meng and Dr. Bergsland. Hopefully they will be monitoring it carefully so we can keep Nan in good balance.

Nan's mental sharpness improved hour by hour all day. This evening she is vintage Nan and enjoyed reading the email messages and talking to Irene, Sharon, Ronnie (Dana's husband) and especially Nikki who we had a chance to speak to earlier while Mom was in surgery. Keanna talked to Jason and he got such a kick out of it. He is really excited about being a father soon and Jo is doing well with her pregnancy.

As it got dark I walked with Jason over to the parking garage and Jason left for home only to be involved in heavy traffic for awhile on 101. He got home about 8:15 and was glad to be off the road. I'm sure Jo was delighted to have him home safely.

I finally ran out of cash this evening. Day parking is $17, night parking is $15 and that tends to eat up $20s real fast so I was into the change holder in the van to park. I drove the streets for awhile to see if I could find parking but nothing popped up.

Nan may be released tomorrow evening or Sabbath morning depending on a number of factors. They intend to remove her picc line tomorrow and do not plan to replace it so weekly blood work will involve a stick each time. We may get a new one put in just in case.

This day has had tense moments, moments of pain and suffering, moments of happiness and joy and we are thankful that God allowed Jason to make an appointment months ago to be here in the city today. Very nice!

Steve and Loree have been holding the company together and have been very busy. We look forward to getting back and doing our part with the load.

Will you please pray for Nan's leaking incision wound? Her Creatines, the adventure of her having to depend on eating food again?

Thanks so much for your being there and thanks especially to Irene for visiting and for Wes and Bob and Carrol, Roger and Carrol putting such helpful comments in the blog.

Love to all

tim and nan

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Calm day

Dear Friends and Family,

Getting on line this evening has been a hassle, I'm finally writing using a land line at the hotel. The high speed internet that worked so well last night is not working well this evening at all.

Nan has had a good day and has been awake most of the time. Her speech was slightly slurred this morning but has improved as the day has gone on. She has been eating more and a decision has been made to discontinue the TPN for the present and see how she does without it. To me that is a very scary idea but sometimes we need to defer to the experts. We were told today that continual TPN can lead to kidney issues. We certainly have kidney issues for sure.

She has had very little temp today, is on a basic antibiotic, tomorrow the cultures will be complete and we will know if she has an infection in her blood or some other infection. Dr. Meng and the IR team has decided to do the surgery tomorrow morning at 11 (give or take a few hours). They will replace the present nephrostomy tubes, use dye to see if they can spot the source of the leaking. She will then return to the room to recover and it is expected that she willo be allowed to come home on Friday. We are not really sure about that yet.

Our dear friend Irene Wing drove up from San Jose to day to spend time with Nan. They played a card game, traded stories and enjoyed each others company. Nan called her this evening and she made it back home safely in spite of the rain.

I decided to search for chargers for our cell phones. Both our phones were getting low so I started walking. First I found a store that sold chargers for Nans phone. Then back to hook it up to charge the phone, rested a bit and since Irene was there I left again for what was reported to be a nearby Cingular store. Well the 10 blocks turned out to be uphill and very long blocks. The store was tiny but they had a charger for my phone. Then I headed back, well it had decided to rain and of course my coats are safely at home. So I stuck close to the storefronts some of which offer shelter, found a local place to eat and had a garden burger and hot chocolate and then headed down the hill for the hospital and some warmth. It was good to get back and I was so tired from my hours of walking that I slept soundly in the hospital's idea of recliner for awhile. Nan and I had a nice evening together charging our phones, showing her the emails that had come in and discovering that we could hook up for a few minutes using the hospital phone system. That helped Nan pass the time. Various doctors came in and visited and all feel pretty good about Nan's general health at this time. We still have no word about the CT taken at end of November. Nan is going to try to get Dr. Bergsland to take a peek at it in the morning and also hope to be able to have a new one taken while we are here. That is doubtful really.

Loree has been a sweetheart and been watching the dogs and cats, fish and house to keep it all together. Since we have no heat it probably is a little cooler than the animals are used to.

We have talked to both Pam and Sharon today and both remain ill. Sharon sounds really bad and was running a 102 fever today. Yes she has been to the doctor but so far the meds are not turning the tide. Pam is waiting for insurance approval for a CT scan of her lungs. She is sounding better and has returned to work.

We got to talk to both Nikki and Jason today and I think mom got to talk to Jo as well. We hear from Loree that Steve is a very busy boy, he is wonderful about helping when I am away and of course when we are home too. We love to be in touch with the kids and value their words and ideas so much. It is just so nice to hear the phone ring and discovery it is the kids!

I managed to write an appraisal here from the hotel this morning, that was a trick, even had to call LeAnn, our faithful friend and neighbor to go to the office and read me a password number so I could access a MLS board I needed. I had hoped to write more appraisals in the morning but realize that I left my briefcase in the hospital room tonight, it has all the data that I need. Right now I'm heading to bed. I'm once again getting sick and the meds have run out that I was on. Many people are having a tough time recovering from these current bugs.

Please pray for an overall guidance from our Heavenly Father, that Nan's health issues will be dealt with while she is at the hospital and that she can move to a recovery stance once we get home. She is bravely going through this hospital stay just like she has all the ones before.

Thank you for your prayers, calls, good thoughts and encouragement.

Love from

Nan and Tim

Nan is resting in Mt Zion Hospital this evening

Dear Friends and Family,

Today did not turn out like Nan had carefully planned. I woke her up about 8:30, we did a dressing change, she dressed in her purple velour outfit and we finished packing and loaded the car. Its hard to think of everything one might need but we did pretty well. She had planned the day carefully and we started by picking up the results of the blood work in Antioch, then to Concord to the hospital where we picked up the CD of her Oct. CT scan, then to Mt Zion in SF to pick up the CD of the CT scan done at the end of November. Then to the doctors office and we arrived early, not that it mattered. We got there at 12:30 for a 1 pm appointment and ended up being taken to a room at around 4 pm. The waiting was very difficult for Nan. Usually during this time of the day she is either sitting in her comfy recliner or taking a nap. But here hour and after hour she sat in a chair in the waiting room. We were not alone and as the day progressed the tempers rose a bit. Not Nan, she stayed calm even though I know she hurt a lot.

We found Dr. Bergsland to be compassionate, very sharp in her questions and comments and before long she stated, I think I should admit you to the hospital right now. Nan was surprised and after praying this morning for God to control the day I felt it was the right thing. Health issues at present are: spiking fever several times a week, heart rate today was 137 resting, hemoglobin was 7.8, vomiting a couple times a day, nephrostomy tube insertion points oozing brown discharge, leaking is less but not stopped. She felt she needed to get a read on everything, a base line as it were and then start from there. She didn't even look at the CTscan yet, she said, what difference does that make today when Nan is facing these immediate issues. She sent us up to infusion and they started drawing blood, vial after vial of it and then they drew blood from her right arm. Later they took samples from both nephrostomy tubes. They are searching for possible infection, blood infection, anything that would explain hemoglobin dropping so fast, spiking temps, high creatines of 3.2. We are relieved that finally someone is taking the time to see if they can discovery what is causing Nan so much distress.

As I write past midnight my phone just rang, it was Nan who had just woken out of a sound sleep, said her room was warm and cozy, is receiving the first of two units of blood right now and is settled in for the night. How I hate to be away from her yet she is where she needs to be tonight. We think they are going to put off the work on the nephrostomies which was to be at 10 in the morning, put it off until at least thursday. Of course Nan is without her TPN this evening since they won't allow any TPN to come into the hospital from a source that is not under their control. I understand but that means Nan goes without.

We have talked to Jason, Jo and Nikki today as well as Sharon, Dana, Irene and I'm not sure who else. Once again we find ourselves at the hospital without cell phone chargers since we did not plan to stay and planned to be home tomorrow afternoon.

I wrote a detailed blog at about 8 pm this evening in the hospital room while Nan was resting. Then the land line I was hooked to clicked off and no matter what I did it would not let me connect again. I blew the next hour or so trying to make it work but to no avail finally giving up. I am not at the hotel Nan picked for tonight, nice, cozy and sort of looks like a bed and breakfast. Not the same without the first lady though.

When I wake in the morning the first thing I must do is write an appraisal and get it shipped out. Seems that some people are ready to move in, everyone just needs my appraisal, so I guess I will comply. The hotel has high speed internet which helps.

We are deeply grateful tonight for the good care Nan is getting today. We are also grateful for your prayers and for your concern and love. These are not easy times for our family. We treasure this lady so much and just want to see her prosper and recover fully. She is in God's hands every day and so far they have come through again and again.

My emotions are torn a bit, one day I raced around as fast as I could for 15 hours trying to get the data and inspections done for 4 appraisals spread over a 60 mile radius. Then today I sat with Nan doing nothing for over 4 hours, just watching her courage and convictions. Hard to adjust to each days reality.

Please remember Nan in your prayers as I will do as well. Doesn't the bible say the prayers of a righteous man (woman) will be a big help.

We send our love, Nan is in room 506B Mt Zion Hospital UCSF.


tim and nan

Monday, February 05, 2007

Safe and sound

Dear Ones,

*I drove nearly 400 miles today to see properties
*Nan ventured out in her van to have her hair washed
*Both of us are very tired tonight
*Both of us are on edge about tomorrow's Dr. visit at UCSF
*Nan had significant bleeding around her colostomy today when it failed while she was out and that concerns us both, not sure where the bleeding is coming from
*We anticipate leaving around 9:30 in the morning, pick up CD of the CT scan from September in Concord, then pick up CD of the CT scan at UCSF done at the end of November.
*We will spend the night in SF at a nearby hotel
* We are not sure if we can blog tomorrow night or not
*10 am Wednesday IR is going to replace nephrostomies and inject dye to see if the glue is holding in ureters and look for other leaks
*When Nan recovers we are traveling home Wed. afternoon.
*We sure need your prayers seeking God's answers and healing for leaking, vomiting, bleeding, controlling tumors

Your intervention in our lives is precious to us both and to our children as well. Thank you!



Sunday, February 04, 2007

Ups and downs

Dear Friends and Family Members,

Nan is finally resting now, has a new dressing, new nephrostomy dressings, all her meds taken and I'll bet she is asleep. Her day started slowly as I was out doing field reviews so she just kept warm in bed and rested up. A phone call alerted me that Art and Connie were in the area and they were kind enough to drop by with some cheer. That got Nan up and she spent some time with them. Art was so kind as to move some wood to the wood holder on the back deck NEXT to the rear door for much shorter wood runs in the morning when it is soooo cold. He also did a doggies cleanup on the deck and probably other things that I have not noticed yet. Thank you Art and Connie for coming by. Sorry I missed you.

Nan had some more squash, lemons, crackers, gummy bears, toast and kept warm under her blanket, late this afternoon we had a scare, suddenly her temp started to rise, up to 101.5 and I did a slow panic. If we go to ER they will admit her, then we will miss all the appointments at UCSF which we are so looking forward to. She took good old tylenol, we did the cool cloth, she turned off her heated cover and I turned off her little heater and slowly the temp came down to normal, thank you Lord for that. During this temp spike Nikki and Keanna came to visit and that was just wonderful. I decided that work could wait so played with Keanna, she put on a puppet show for me, checked for loose change for her piggy bank, played with her dolls. Nikki showed us the photos from this afternoon's session in Pleasanton. They are just plain beautiful. Can't wait until we can share them with you. She is one very special little girl for sure. I shot one of her in my chair which I will share with this blog.

Mid evening Nan decided to venture into the office and to her desk. She was there for a long time paying bills and sorting through paperwork. I was amazed and impressed that she could find enough energy and will power to take care of such important things. finally she said she had spent enough and we headed up to bed. We are both very much looking forward to the appointment with the oncologist at UCSF. We have great hopes that she will be the gatekeeper for Nan's care and keep an eye on everything, not just part of the total picture.

Tomorrow morning Terri our nurse comes to care for Nan and to take blood work. While she is here she will take a look at the PICC line and attempt to solve its problems. I meanwhile will be driving over two hours to my first appointment in Madera, then up to Coursegold for 4 more appointments and then end the day at Olivehurst. At that point I get to point the buggy home. Yes it will be a long day and I have researched, mapped, considered and planned for the day. I just hope I have enough sunlight to handle all the inspections. I'm sure going to need God's help tomorrow to keep me awake, alert and on schedule. We are hoping Mary can come be with Nan for part of the afternoon. Mary was kind enough to bring some wonderful soup which I had tonight and some vegetables also. My brother in law who lives in Texas sent me a new breathing mask for the machine I use every night for sleep apnea. I can't wait to give it a try.

I got a big kick out of Wes's comments about last night's blog. He's an amazing guy, wish you all could meet him.

We anticipate having a very full week and we sure need your prayers for Nan's health. How we wish the leaking could be treated and stopped. How we wish Nan would not lose her cookies at times for no known reason. yes and we wish the pain in her nephrostomy tube insertion site would diminish as well.

She has announced that she is going to get her hair washed tomorrow somewhere so that will be her big adventure. I am so proud of this tremendous lady and it is an honor every night to come home to her. She is one of the great ones as you all know and she would never admit.

Thanks to all of you for your many contributions to making our lives work out. So glad Jason is back from LA safely and that Jo is doing well with creating a new little baby.

love to all

tim and nan