Saturday, June 30, 2007

Running Running

Dex eats up your muscles: we learn all sorts of things at myeloma information and support meetings. Dexamethasone is taken with Revlimid to fight myeloma. Maybe that is next for our Myeloma Hope guy, but for now he is trying an alternative treatment of large doses of curcumin with a little black pepper.

This morning at the meeting there was more discussion than usual about the agonies and perils of being the major support person for a person who has myeloma. This was partly due to the presence of some support folks who had questions as they were going through some heavy stuff.

Because our Myeloma Hope guy does not have any symptoms other than blood counts, these days seem to me like a eerie marvelous tentative awesome honeymoon time...
With the ominous forecast of unthinkable pain some day for him.

So we are running running. Met with the Stillwater runners this morning: Five miles for serious runners and around 5K for runner/walkers like Running Partner and me. You can read more about our Guy's running these days at Make It a Masterpiece.
Saturday morning runnersMaybe we will bike tomorrow. Cross training is good.

When I hear care-giver stories I would say my care-giving is pretty low-key... but I am devoting a lot of energy to continuing to study nutrition and alternative supplements ... as well as shopping, cleaning up... and cooking it up for great healthy eating.

Amazing thing: I am working on my deep aversion to fish cakes... by selecting .. for lunch... wild caught salmon fish cakes with spinach, feta cheese, anise, fennel and other spices ... at Whole Foods Market in Minneapolis. They were tasty... and I am still thinking about why I don't think much of the idea of good fish chopped up and made into cakes. Stay with me.

Salmon cake dinnerSpinach feta salmon patties from Whole Foods (Wild Alaska salmon, spinach, feta cheese, sea salt, black pepper, anise, fennel, garlic, parsley, paprika, canola oil, breadcrumbs), blackcurrant jam, organic strawberries. Estimated Weight Watcher points = 9.

So it goes; life is precious; stay awake for it; and eat (dark chocolate) dessert first. Grace is with us.

Picture below: good runner legs of Saturday morning runners. These legs were made for running

Friday, June 29, 2007

Studio 60 Season Finale

"Time flies like an arrow; fruit flies like a banana."
Think about it.

Studio 60 ... Thursday evening ... NBC.
That was the caption above the countdown clock in the last scene of the series.
Well, I guess that doesn't make much sense if you weren't there ... but oh ...
What an excellent drama about writing comedy in war time! Check out internet reviews. Maybe they will bring Studio 60 back?

At our house fruit flies don't get a chance at the organic strawberries ... shown here on a pink Easter plate with a dozen "slots" for deviled eggs.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Altar Flowers from the Garden

Grandma's flowers for the worship service: What a great way to share the beauty !

An artful arrangement

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Great River Bicycle Festival

St. Paul, Wednesday; Cannon Falls, Thursday; Minneapolis, Friday; Mankato, Saturday; Stillwater, Sunday.... with races for amateurs, kids, women and men on each day.

Great River Energy, Elk River, one of the sponsors, is a not-for-profit electric cooperative providing reliable wholesale electricity to 28 distribution cooperatives serving more than 600,000 customers in Minnesota and Wisconsin. Great River Energy looks for ways to provide electricity in an environmentally friendly manner.

Warm for racing, but a wonderful community event. Race courseScores of children on their dad's shoulders, kids with their bikes, dozens and dozens of infants and toddlers.Families on Chilkoot Hill
Another kid and dad
As there were kids of all sizes, there were dogs of all sizes. We even observed one bicycle racer who had brought her dog.
Middle-sized dogSome Stillwater folks were grilling for picnics and enterprising kids offered water or lemonade and cookies for sale.For Sale Our Hero brought the afternoon lattes.Oh thank you! Brought some lunch to eat during the races Sunday afternoon... Organic cheddar, sesame crackers (no added fat), plus an apple, orange, banana and a bottle of water each.
We celebrated this as the best day of the year!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Monday, June 18, 2007

Grandma's Marathon, But It Wasn't Duluth Weather

Lake SuperiorWhat a beautiful day it was... with a glorious sunrise over Lake Superior.

The day before had gone without a hitch... Driving to Duluth, registering and greeting friends at the expo, pasta lunch there at the DECC,(just happened to sit with a delightful couple and young daughter from Mpls), and then to the house and a chance to see flower gardens.Grandma's flowersA delicious pasta dinner .. With attention to every detail .. As our daughter-in-law and son always do!!... Pasta dinner on the LakeSalad with toasted pecans


So here we were, at 5:30am, boarding the Lake Superior train to Two Harbors.
We had trained, prepared, made lists, left nothing to chance....
BUT THE WEATHER, of course.Walking to  the startMusic at the start was blessedly less deafening this year.... The National Anthem. (Which was delivered pleasantly, musically!) ... followed by “Chariots of Fire” and we were off and running. Later, we found out that the race start temperature was a balmy 71 degrees. It is not a good sign when we don’t need to wear our garbage bags.. Or even our extra throw-away shirts.. While we are waiting for the starting gun.Runners gathering at the start areaMight have been around mile 4.. at a road intersection... a group of people.. a man out in front... and I shouted: Al... is that you?? And I hugged Al Franken !!!

My Honey’s parents, now age 94 and 97, have been volunteers with their amateur radio communications, on the Grandma’s Marathon race course since the first marathon. WeI looked forward to greeting them at mile seven. Later, they described us.. as we came up to their mile 7 post: “Looked as fresh as if they had merely walked across the street.”Volunteers age 94 and 97
We were having a fabulous time... We were making the time on our bracelets. ... We were going to finish.. And probably even in time to get finisher’s medals? Running along the Lake Shore Drive of Lake Superior... What a joy!
Along the way, our son and friend had a cooler of water bottles for us. (Also a new water bottle carrier I had bought the day before.)
And in about a minute we were on our way again. I love marathons. Sun on the hot white road
Then the sun bore down... Mile 15 to mile 19 ... We think the temperature might have been over 80.. the glare on the white surface of the road. Previously, with regular cups of ice.. and enough cold water to drink and pour over our heads and backs, we had been chugging right along. Now we were scorched.
My hands were so swollen that I could hardly bend my fingers.
At about mile 19, a couple of volunteers shouted out, Was it still fun? And I shouted back, we are having a great time!Duluth newspaperWhen we got to the Lester River and then London Road, we chose the shady sidewalk, but it was too late... We were spent. Water stops had closed down, but gratitude to the friendly young couple somewhere before mile 21 who gave us cups of ice and a man in a truck handed us 20 ounce bottles of water. A woman came with a few left-over orange wedges and warned us that there was no more support the rest of the way.

The cheerful piano concerto ring tone on my cell phone in my pocket, was Honey offering to bike back to bring us water. We are done, I said, Come and get us in the car and drive us to the finish area. Picture below shows his bike on the car.. ready for bringing us water later. You can read about Honey’s marathon run on his Make It a Masterpiece blog:
Bike on the carAmbulances came and went... some people were pretty wasted by the heat. It was time to call it a great run and celebrated survival. We had avoided the medical tents.Survivor!
Twenty-one point two miles (21.2) is a respectable run .. on any day.. and especially on a hot one. The day we have is the best day of the year! It was not a completed marathon, but it was one fabulous adventure. Duluth bridge

Monday, June 11, 2007

Summer Days

St. Croix River ValleyHot Hot all week here: feels like summer! Our weekend race will be hot, too. I'm figuring to acclimate by spending time outside ... gardening, walking, enjoying the summer days. Consciously hydrating, too, seems like good preparation.
This morning we ran at the community center... our last air conditioned run for the week. Chose an inexpensive freezer ice pack at a drug store on the way home. Also got hyaluronic acid to go with the glucosamine, chondroitin and MSM for my knee(s). Haven't seen any bad side effects for any of that yet ... except wallet damage. A doctor was on CBS this morning recommending the first two of those plus HA for joints. I will investigate what ASU is.
A fun weekend to look forward to energizes the week? Run run.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Running Running

5K RunnersTrying to keep in condition for another long run, in spite of feet and knees and weather... Eating lean protein and fruit and vegetables and drinking water... Watching weather forecasts for upcoming events... Looking back at the pictures of the last marathon and remembering a wonderful trip and race.
We 3 are here, and it is the best day of the year.

Monday, June 4, 2007

Saturday, June 2, 2007

Post-Race Breakfast

Celebration BreakfastWhole wheat French toast (two slices, made with one whole egg and milk).
maple-apple topping, briefly steamed until tender: one whole apple, cubed, dash of cinnamon, one tablespoon real maple syrup (no water added).
fresh blackberries, 1/4 ounce raisins, and plain organic yogurt.
Weight Watcher points depend on bread used; note that just one tablespoon of maple syrup is enough flavor without piling on the carbs.