Lighting of the Advent Candles

I am happy to report that I my wig survived the lighting of the Advent Candles!  My son kept the teachers behind me amused.  Just before mass he decided to start playing with my new wig.  “Tickle, Tickle”, he said as his fingers found there way underneath the wig behind my ear.  Then he said, “Is this your real hair?”  I said, “NO.”   Then he shouted, so that everyone could clearly hear, “THIS ISN’T YOUR REAL HAIR.  IT’S A WIG!”   God love him.  I just burst out laughing (as did everyone else).

Later, he started getting squirmy.  I told him that the guy in the purple (Priest) was having a party downstairs after mass, and if he was really good and quiet, we could go too.  “Who?  Who is having a party?”, he said after jumping up and looked around.  “The guy over there in the purple,” he sang, whilst standing and pointing to the priest?  “Are we going to have CAKE?”  I guess I shouldn’t have said anything about the party because he was getting pretty excited about it.

Then, when the bells rang during the Eucharist and Frack said, “What’s that?”

“Jingle Bells”, I answered (remembering that that was what 3 year old Frick screamed out when she first heard them).  Then Frack asked, “What is he drinking?” when the priest took a drink from the chalice.  “Wine”, I answered.  “Wine! Can I have some?”, he said loudly.   “No, only at Nonno’s house’, I answered.  For a kid who barely talks, this was his place to shine. This is why I don’t take him to church with me much.  I never get to sing in choir in peace because he keeps grabbing my hand, telling me it’s time to go home!


Wig Killer Contest

This mornings call to my oncologist nurse went something like this:

“Hi, it’s me again, Maria.  Two of the kids at my children’s day care have the Chicken Pox and I was wondering if it was safe for me or them to go there.  Both of my children had the Chicken Pox vaccine.  I kept them away from day care today but tomorrow night is my sons Christmas Concert and I wanted to know what I should/shouldn’t do.

Turns out, the kids should be fine and as long as I don’t hug kids with scabs all over their bodies, I should be fine too since I did have a mild case of the chicken pox when I was a kid.  Hurray!

So today I got some unexpected news.

The principal at my children’s school, wants our family to light the Advent Candles at mass tomorrow night.  I was a bit reluctant to say yes, but Frick is all for it.  You know, she practices every Sunday, lighting candles and praying at our church for Kay, people we know who have passed away, and even Chimo, my friend’s dead dog.  (He’s a regular).  Yes, she does not want to miss the opportunity to light the pink candle on the alter (there are 3 purple ones, but she wants the pink one).  So how can I say no?

You know what that now means?  That means I get to wear my $600 wig and fake $500 climate controlled boobie too.  I’m going to be worth over $1000 going walking down the aisle, and that’s without any clothes or jewellery on!  Wow!  That’s something.  I’d better find some clothes for this special occasion.  I saw some really nice Coco Channel outfits on Fashion Television today, but I don’t think I can order one in time for tomorrow.

I have actually resisted wearing my wig because I am afraid that I will kill it.  There is a special rule that you must abide by, whilst wearing “THE WIG”.  And I am terrified that I may break it, and destroy that lovely, synthetic hair.  What do you think are the chances of one of my family members lighting up my hair tomorrow night?  That would be a Mass no one would ever likely forget.

Do you know the #1 cause of killing a wig?

And No,  the #1 Killer of wigs is not “Being lit afire by a candle.”

Nice try.

Keep thinking.

I got invite to my Principal’s house for our Christmas Social Party.  I’m ahead of everyone  and already have my Secret Santa gift!  And if my family does light my wig on fire, I’m going to box it, gift-wrap it, and put it in the Secret Santa Gift pile instead of what was originally planned.  Just thought you might want to know.

And now….the answer to The #1 Cause of killing a wig is……Opening an oven door!  It will singe the wig and it would probably not be reconstructable as a result.  (and watch out for those hot dishwashers too).  I don’t have one, so that’s not an issue for me.

On Vacation

Forwarded from me from some remote location in Ontario…

I am now vacationing at Nonna’s house due to the fact that Little Boy Brown puked in my bed this morning at 5:35 a.m., and then left a trail of diarrhea (at 7:35a.m)  from the hallway to the toilet.

Yes, it was nasty.

Yes, I had to clean it up.

And now I’ve left the job to Bobo, who I phoned and asked to COME HOME RIGHT NOW!

You won’t be hearing from me for a while, as Nonna lives in the dark ages and does not have a computer (and for some stupid reason, I cannot seem to send messages from the library computer near Nonna’s house.)

Christmas Tree Robbery

So today we decided to go to a Garden Nursery to pick up a Christmas tree.  After much debate, we decided upon a lovely Douglas Fir tree.  We had it packaged and ready to go at the loading dock, but decided to look around the store before we left.  

After we paid for it, we went to the loading dock area only to discover our tree on someone else’s S.U.V.   “Hey, that’s our tree”, I shouted.  I asked the people who worked there to sort it out because I was sure that was our tree on the roof of someone else’s car.   Unfortunately, they didn’t bother to write anyones name on their tree so we didn’t have much to stand on.  

I kept telling the woman and her husband that our tree had a pointed top and a red scar on the trunk of the tree, but she insisted it was her tree.  The employees just shrugged.  My husband said it didn’t matter and let’s go get our money back.  I was not happy, and neither were my two kids.  I was getting ready to play the cancer card.  “Look,” I would say, pulling off my scarf, “I have cancer.  I may not have many more Christmas’s left and you are taking my tree.”  Now who could argue with that?

There were only 2 other trees in the loading dock and they weren’t remotely like the one we picked.  I was all set to argue about it, but my husband kept saying, “Don’t worry about it, I’ll go to the other Garden Nursery and get another one”.  So we went and got our money back.

When we got into the car, I asked him why he was letting them get away with robbing us of our tree.  He said that it was more fun this way.  “What do you mean?”, I asked him.  “Well,” he said, “That guy bought an 8-9 foot Christmas tree for $90, and won’t he be in for a big surprise when he gets it home and discovers he only has a 6 1/2 foot tree.”  “Why didn’t we take his then?,” I asked my husband.  “I thought of that”, he answered, “But his wasn’t that good”.  

 That afternoon, Bobo went with his brother to another Nursery and got another tree.  Then his brother wanted to go to the one we were at earlier to see what they had.  

Guess who was returning a tree in the parking lot?

Surprise, Surprise.

Stupid people.


Christmas Shopping? Wear a Swine Flu Mask

Friday, December 4, 2009

I decided to heed my doctors orders to stay away from large crowds, and regrettably did not attend Kay’s memorial.  My doctor told me that from now on, until I finish my treatment, I cannot afford to get sick again.  I’m still wondering if I can shake this cough before my blood counts start to drop down on Wednesday.  I’m feeling more tired than usual.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

The last thing my oncology nurse said to me when I left on Thursday was that she looked forward to my phone calls on her answering machine because it really made her “Think” about what was going on with me.  Glad to know I am such an enigma!

Today’s phone call will go something like this….

Hi, nurse… it’s me again, Maria.  I look like I’m 6 months pregnant.  I haven’t had a bowel movement since my diarrhea episode on Tuesday night/Wednesday morning, and I’m afraid that that cow constipation glove that you gave me for showering is going to have to be put to another use.  Please tell me this isn’t so.

So now that I have 2 days worth of chemo chemicals sitting inside my intestines, when am I going to blow?  Am I going to need an enema?  I heard stories about those things.

Oh poo, poo,

Glorious poo,

Where, oh where, are you?

You will be happy to know (or maybe not) that I gave birth to that glorious poo at 8:47 a.m. this morning.


My finger nails seem to be getting long white streaks of lines in them. And near the cuticles, it’s becoming a bit black.  I heard that when you are at the end of your treatment and your eyebrows fall off, you also get rewarded with black finger nails that fall off too.  Do you think that includes toe nails?  This is going to be a big problem.  I love to bite my nails and there won’t be anything to bite!


This is something I was thinking about today Re: a shopping experience earlier  this week when I went to pick up photos for Kay’s memorial service.

There is a woman who works at the Dollar Store, who I never go to her check out because she is so very incredibly SLOW.  Not so if you have a Swine Flu Mask on!

This leads me to my #1 Christmas Shopping Tip this season:  Wear a Swine Flu Mask.


1.  When people are walking towards you with your mask on, it’s like the parting of the Red Sea.

Everyone moves away from you and you have a  clear path to wherever you want to go.

2.  No one volunteers to line up directly behind you at the check out counter,

and if you are lucky, the few people in the front will drop their purchases,

just to get away from you.

3.  The cashier will provide you with the fastest service ever.

(although it’s really funny to watch their expression when you hand over

the money to pay for a purchase… they really don’t want to touch it).

This could led an awesome Social Psychology Thesis paper, don’t you think?

Chemo. #3

They chemo-ed me anyway (new word, I just made it up).  Told me my white blood cell count was good enough to zap me again, and they don’t like to delay treatment.  Which means I’m due for my next drug Taxatere on Wednesday, December 23rd.  I’d better be okay for Christmas, I told them.

According to Cathy (because of the steroids they will be giving me for 3 days), I will be wired.

When my oncologist took me into his little room to talk to me, I told him how I got diarrhea from the Hot and Sour Soup on Tuesday and suffered Tuesday, and Wednesday morning because of it.  He said, “What’s the matter with you, don’t you check out the signs posted in the windows before you enter restaurants.  Yellow means YOU DON’T STAY.  I like this guy.  He has a warped sense of humour like me.

He told me I would be going on taxatere the next time around.  I asked him if I was going to be okay on Christmas.  He said if I wasn’t, then he was on call that day.  “Oh good”, I said, “So I can call you”.  He rolled up his eyes and said, “If you are going to call me, it better be for a really good reason… something serious”.  I think I’ll call him on Christmas just to make sure he’s there, and wish him a Merry Christmas (even though he is Jewish!)

That’s a good reason!

Chemo Cardinal Rule #5

Dec. 1 Later that night

It was not a good idea to break Cardinal Rule #5?  Do not eat spicy food.

(that includes Hot & Sour Soup).


My butt is burning.

Dec. 2

I was really not feeling well today.  I had diarrhea all night and all morning.  When I phoned my oncologist nurse, she told me to go see my family doctor right away to get assessed because I’m suppose to have chemo tomorrow. I don’t think that is going to happen though because when my doctor checked my temperature, she said I was .4 degrees away from being hospitalized.  Tonight, I will have to monitor my temperature and see what happens.

Frick’s Boy Problems

I can’t believe it’s already December.  24 more shopping days left!  I don’t have all my Christmas shopping done, but we do have 1 tree up (the disney tree of course).

This morning I went to the school to give one of the teachers a CD of Kay because she is going to do a huge collage for the funeral.  I know it will be really nice because she has a knack for stuff like this.  She also wrote a beautiful poem for it.  Anyway, off I went to Blacks Photography to get her copies of the pictures I took of Kay when we were in Quebec.

One of my favourite pictures of her was at Mont Morrency (sp?) Falls where she is looking out towards the falls and there below appeared a beautiful rainbow out of nowhere.  This particular photograph  sticks out in my mind because when I went to the hospital to see her back in August she happily showed me lovely paintings of rainbows that she did with an art therapist at Sick Kids Hospital.  Now whenever I see a rainbow, it will remind me of her.  I got some other good pictures of her and some of her friends.  Unfortunately, a lot of the pictures were of her at historic sites with her back turned because I didn’t want her to know I was taking so many pictures of her for her mom.

This afternoon, I had my carpets cleaned in the living room, hallway, and stairs.  My older sister came over today so we could watch a movie.  I didn’t want Frick and Frack to tread on the wet carpets, so we went to my favourite chinese restaurant “Magic Wok” for their hot and sour soup.  It was a real treat.

On our way over there, Frick started crying.  She told us that she got into trouble and had a detention after school with all of her friends, and it wasn’t her fault – she was trying to protect herself and her friends and her brother.  How are you going to have a detention tomorrow from 3:30 – 4:00 when the bus picks everyone up at 3:25 to take them to day care?  Am I suppose to come pick you up at 4:00?  “Are you sure your detention isn’t at recess?” I questioned her.  “Yes”, that’s right”, she answered, “It’s at recess.”  “So what happened?,” I asked.

“The boys were bugging all the girls and one boy pushed my head into the railing on the portable.  They took our hats and then another boy tried to strangle me and he told me that he was going to punch Frack in the face 10 times.  I was only trying to protect Frack and my friends, and now I have a detention.”  “That’s okay, Frick”, I told her, “Do you want me to talk to your teacher about this?”.  “Yes”, she said.

Now I know my kid is no saint, but according to my husband, one of these boys really needs someone to punch the lights out of him.  And if it is a girl, so be it.  This kid has been tormenting her all year and Bobo has told her to protect herself and kick him in the nu news (or, as Frick puts it, the peanuts), and that would be the end of him.   At first, I told her not to get herself into trouble, and to tell the teacher on yard duty (even if it did sound like she was a tattle- teller) so that this boy would get into trouble and not her…  but that that strategy wasn’t really not working for her.

For weeks, I’ve been telling Frick to stay away from anyone who was coughing (so she, and then I, wouldn’t get sick).  So what does that same boy do?  He purposely coughs in her face all day long, agitating her.  And guess what, he sits in her group so she can’t get away from him.

To make matters worse, guess who her “Dancing Partner” is for the Day Cares Christmas Concert?  This same boy, of course.  So every night, Frick would cry about how he purposely steps on her toes and doesn’t do what he is suppose to do, and she no longer was interested in participating in the concert because he was going to wreck it.  I stood firm and told her to keep trying… that maybe she was a good dancer and could teach him.  I chose not to speak to the day care teachers, hoping that it would work itself out.  It did eventually, as this boy got kicked out of the concert for acting like a goof and now she has a new partner and he, according to Frick, smells.