Devine site

A little bit about my day, my family, and my knitting.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

It's Who You Know and What HE Knows!

Most of the schools in my county give their teachers the use of a laptop for their school/personnal use until they leave the school. In my last school I had an Apple iBook G4. I am not a MAC lover but I did come to love my G4. I am at a new school this year and had a iBook G3 (a step below my last one) or a Dell Latitutde. I chose the Dell, as I have always been partial to PC's (and didn't want less than I had last year). It's fine, except I could not for the life of me get it to pick up the internet at home. I have a router, and the Dell would show that it picked up an excellent signal, but it would not fo online. Every day I have brought it back to school for the tech guy to see. He would go through it making changes to the system, tell me what to do at home, and when I brought it home it would not work online. I waaas ready to throw it out the window ('s not mine). Finally, when I was venting to Alison, she said that she would ask Michael to help out. wonderful son-in-law (who by now is really more like a son, as is Becca's husband, Phil - I love them both!) called me last night and talked me through the changes that needed to be made and EUREKA!!!!!! - it worked. The computer picks up the ONLINE signal and works beautifully. He then gave me the information to get it working on the school system. It helps to have a tech genius in the family! And a sweet guy at that! After he got it working, we took time to have a really nice conversation about other things NOT tech. Gerry with Michael
Now I have to be a really good girl and NOT go up to the tech guy at work and say....HA! (which I won't do because he's a really nice guy and he DID try).

Speaking of's my students first day. I already know that I will have an upset stomach. I feel fine now, but the first day I always feel butterflies. The good thing, though, is that this is the first of the last 6 classes that I will have, as I have made up my mind to retire in 6 years!!!!!! Woohoo!

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Wholesale Therapy

An acquaintance of mine (actually, the wife of Gerry's friend) invited me to her house today for an English Tea party combined with shopping, food and fellowship for "the girls." I decided that I could do with getting out for a bit. I really like Julie and love seeing her home. I knew that the things for sale at her house would probably be WAY out of my league financially, but it's fun to look, isn't it? Before I left, Gerry gave me money to buy something, 'cause he felt that this was a good friend of his and they were nice enough to invite me. Hey - who am I to argue? However, I had no intention of buying for the sake of buying, especially is the prices were high. Well - was I ever surprised. First off....the food was so nice...teeny little crustless sandwiches made of egg or chicken salad, or cucumbers (isn't that called watercress?), tempting little muffins filled with jam with devonshire topping nearby, fresh fruit, chocolate pretzels and some yummy cookies.

The items for sale turned out to be VERY reasonably priced. The first salesperson was showing jewelry (no sales pitch, just a display on a table). They were all made from lovely beads - silver, glass, etc, but not my style. In the guestroom another woman had a rack of clothing. Most of it was rayon/cotton, sort of a 1960/70 hippie flare. I bought a really lightweight blouse that ties in the back and has sequins in front. I also wanted it in a very pale green/gray but it was tight going on/off (although once on it fit perfectly). The saleswoman is going to try to get it in either that color or white. I also bought a denim jacket that has silver buttons on it. After making my purchases, I returned to the livingroom where I saw the cutest bags, made from jeans. Now I am NOT a trendy person by any means, but these were just too cute. I like them all but had to have the one with the doggie lining - there was my dacshund Rusty (if you look carefully you can see Rusty to the right, just inside the handle) and a maltese (long-hair, not short hair like my 3) on the fabric, with a silver tag that reads I LOVE DOGS! How could I possibly resist buying it (and it would make Gerry SO happy for me to spend his money). Blue seemed to like the bag as well when I got it home.

Friday, August 17, 2007

The Low-Down

On Wednesday we received the paperwork explaining the research study that Gerry will be part of. Today I spoke to the nurse who answered our questions. Basically, Gerry will receive 6 hours of chemo involving two drugs plus either a third or it's placebo (and no one will know who has which). He will get the treatment on day one of every three week cycle, and on the second cycle (6 weeks) he'll also get tests done. So I extended our stay through Sept. 1, secured a sub, finished setting up my room (for the students arrive Monday), rented a car and got flights. We are SO lucky in that department. Continental Airlines has an arrangement with MD Anderson Medical Center. If you are a patient there, you can book tickets that can be changed with no penalty (you might have to pay a difference in fare though). I wasn't going to book those tix this time, figuring we would fly back after Gerry's doctor visit on the 29th. But since it was only a difference of $30 over the web pricing, I went ahead and got them. Good thing, since the very next day we found out that we would be staying until September 1. When I called to change the flights, the fare was less than the original one, so we saved $35 (of course, since we are renting the car for 2 more days we have to pay more there, but every little bit helps).

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Good News

We got some good news today. Gerry got the call that he will be seen for his scans on Aug 28th and will see the doctor on the 29th. Later on he got another call....the doctor wants Gerry to be part of another clinical trial. This one does not require the growing of cells or a reactivity test. He'll just need to take a regular blood test. So, we are flying to TX on the 27th and will find out more then. Meanwhile, school started yesterday for teachers. After the required meeting I got to work on my room. It's coming along nicely, but I am so anal...I sorted through books and books and books, putting them together by genre, reading level and reading program. I like everything just so (at least to start).

Friday, August 10, 2007


I have been working so hard to get my room ready. First I had to go through all the STUFF that the previous teacher PLUS another teacher (who left the school) had left in my room. Then I had to unpack my 40+ boxes and organize it all. However, I now have next week, too, to work on the room. I found out Wednesday morning that Gerry is no longer eligible for the trial. Although his t-cells did their part, when they were introduced to his cancer (that they removed in April and saved) there was no reaction, which means that the treatment will not work. Honestly...I thought that they had already done the reactivity test and all was a go (gee, they knew we were securing an apartment and all). We were SO disappointed, and poor Gerry began to feel that this was a death sentence. The nurse told us that they were going to set up an appointment with the doctor to discuss more options. The dr. would be out of the country until the 20th. Talk about a let down! So there is nothing for us to do at this point but wait.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Back in Port

Ok - so I was wrong...sort of! I have said for the past 9 years (since my first cruise) that while that one was fun, I am NOT a cruise person. I will amend that statement: I AM a cruise person as long as I don't have to be at sea for more than one full day!We had such a nice time on our little cruise to Nassau. The ship/room was nice, food and service were excellent. I loved coming into our room each day to find an animal made out of towels. We spent our day in Nassau just going through the town, shopping. Gerry got my permission to smoke a nasty Cuban cigar. He bought me a lovely gold/cintrine ring and I got myself a pair of dark blue sapphire earrings and pendent (small and tasteful). Gerry bought a simple cross for himself. He is not into religion at all, but I think that in light of his illness, he isn't taking any chances of not being on the Big Guy's "good list." I did get to lie in the sun twice, something I rarely do. It was TOTALLY relaxing, which we both needed very much.

Friday, August 03, 2007

Finally Got The Word

We finally heard from Texas yesterday. Gerry's T-cells expanded to the required 3 billion cells so he will be on the clinical trial. We talked it over and decided that since we will have to stay in Houston for 4 - 6 weeks, we will drive out. We'll take the 4 dogs with us (yes, I know....crazy, but we love them, and it will be good for Gerry to have them with us). I made some calls and have found a corportate apartment near the Medical Center that will let us have 4 dogs. We will stay overnight at Becca and Phil's in Ocala, drive to Atlanta and spend two nights with Alison/Michael/Avi, spend one night in Biloxi (have to take two hotel rooms for the 4 dogs - only 2 in a room). Gerry will start treatment at the end of next week and after a week he'll go into the hospital for 3 weeks of treatment. We are so glad that it's finally happening! I felt horrible about starting a new job (albeit for a former principal) but my priority is to Gerry. It's not easy, though, having Jewish guilt. We not only give it, we get it!!! Being a mommy, I feel so bad for my students starting off their year in kindergarten with a sub. My principal and assistant principal are SO understanding about the whole thing, which helps tremendously. Thank goodness we have the cruise now, so we can relax before the craziness begins. I will have to go to school all next week to work on my room, for we are leaving Friday.