Sunday, May 7, 2017

5/7/17 Happy May Thoughts

May 6, 2017

Dear Family and Friends,

It’s a sunny Saturday here at Casa Shoreline.  Daniel is napping, Steve is at work, and I have a few quiet moments to get out a quick blog post.  What follows are a few random thoughts from the past week.  For those of you who are more linear, and like a thesis sentence, followed by defense of said thesis and a snappy conclusion, you better stop reading right now, for these are truly random bits of news and thoughts!

·   On Monday when I had my CA125 ovarian cancer tumor marker tested, it had dropped to 32!  So after just six treatments with the new double chemo regimen, the marker dropped from 166 to 32!  The normal range is 0 to 35.  I am still a bit stunned at this amazing news!  Thanks be to God, and thanks to all of you who pray for our family so faithfully.  I will continue with chemo for the time being, but a scan will be scheduled in the not too distant future to determine when I can take a much-needed chemo break!

·   I finally gave up blow-drying three or four wisps of hair each day and asked Riley to shave it all off!   We did this with Jericho present so that he wouldn’t be shocked when his Ga Ga suddenly appeared before him looking like a naked mole-rat.  But more importantly, one of Jericho’s favorite pastimes is vacuuming (“More dirt! More dirt!”), so I knew he would be filled with delight to vacuum up the last remnants of his Ga Ga’s brown hair.  And he was!

·   Within one day of shaving my head, I was told my parking fee was “on the house” at a frequently used parking garage (sweet), and two people mistook my gender (figures).  The first to err was a woman who looked right at me as I waited in line until she said, “Sir, I can help you now.”  Oops.  And the other was my soon to be five-year-old across the driveway neighbor, Marina.  When stopping to chat, she asked me what my name was and where I lived.  I said, “Marina, it’s me—Gabrielle—your neighbor.  I live right there.” (Picture my finger pointing at my house).  She replied, “Oh.  I thought you were a boy.”  Reasonable supposition.  Unfortunately, what did NOT happen within one day of shaving my head was that I was NOT offered two samples when Steve and I stopped by See’s Chocolates at Northgate.  I thought for sure the bald head would clinch that deal.  Rats!

·   Today, my two aunts showed up at our door for a shopping day at Alderwood Mall with Daniel and me.  One of my aunts had said “We need Daniel to help us pick out dresses to wear to Renee and Riley’s wedding,” so I had eagerly reserved this day on Daniel’s and my schedules accordingly.  As we chatted a bit before heading out, one aunt said, “I’m not buying anything today, I’m just along for the fun.”  Then the other aunt said, “I don’t need a dress either, but it will be fun to help you pick a dress, and I might need a t-shirt.”  To which I replied, “I already got my dress online.  So…wait a minute.  If you don’t need a dress (finger pointing at aunt number one), and you don’t need a dress (finger moving to aunt number two), and I’ve got my dress, then what are we all doing here?!  A laugh ensued and off we all went to Alderwood Mall anyway, where we bought Jericho his adorable ring bearer outfit and enjoyed a nice lunch out. 

·   Yesterday was such a precious day.  I didn’t mind one bit that it was finally sunny out while I was indoors all day, because I got to spend the day with my beautiful daughter, Renee, watching her try on wedding dresses!  Words can’t describe how it feels to a Mom to see her little baby girl all grown up and ready to marry the love of her life.  She looked incredible in every dress she tried on, but after visiting four bridal shops, we both knew without a doubt which dress was to be “her dress.”  Can you guess which one it was?  The most expensive one we tried, of course!  LOL.  Thank goodness I’m the one who pays the Visa bill each month to spare Steve from keeling over! 

·   For Cinco de Mayo yesterday, we had cinco cool guys from Daniel’s old 4th Hill Dorm at SPU reunited around our dining table, along with one new and fabulous girlfriend, for Daniel’s delicious beef barbacoa tacos, Elliot’s ten-avocado guacamole, and Kenneth’s hand-shaken, agave sweetened margaritas.  How great is that?!

·   Lastly, in my Bible study we have been studying the New Testament book of 1 John.  A couple of verses have stood out to me as our family has spent a lot of time, leading up to the wedding, discussing people who seem to love everyone, and those who hate, and people who accept those who are different from them, and those who are blinded by bigotry.  In this short book of the Bible we read “But whoever hates his brother is in darkness and walks around in the darkness; he does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded him.” 1 John 1:11  In an effort to have compassion on those who hate, and those who are bigots, I am trying to see them, as this verse describes, as being blinded by darkness.  Their beliefs and cruelty of words and/or deeds are things they have been wrongly taught, and which continue through an unrecognized ignorance that prevents understanding.  They are walking around in darkness, and I hope, one day, will find light.  If you read 1 John you will see numerous verses imploring us to love one another.  “Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God.”  1 John 4:7  It’s really as simple as that.  Thanks to all of you, and especially to Steve, Renee, and Daniel, who have taught me, and modeled for me, how to love, and extend light and grace toward all. 



Daniel and I took Jericho to the Easter Eggstravaganza at our church.  A great time was had by all!

Steve, his Mom, Abby, and my Sister-in-Law, Tania, enjoyed a day together seeing the tulips!

Renee and me during our Girls' Weekend at Cannon Beach! Beach walks, long talks, pepperoni pizza, Scrabble, magazines, and lying in bed watching movies while eating the full fat popcorn.  Priceless!

Steve, Daniel, and I enjoyed a day-trip to Whidbey Island for our favorite hike at Ebey's Landing and the most delicious Penn Cove mussels at Christopher's Restaurant!

This is not the dress we picked.  Oh no.  It didn't cost enough for us to have picked it!  :-)