Week of 20 February

I feel really well.  Just like the old days.  There is an element of disbelief that I even have stage 4 cancer, but then I didn’t know I was going through stages 1, 2 and 3 either.  wp_20170223_001

I feel lucky which is odd to say and Penny and I laughed about it when we met for coffee at the Flower Pot where we had lush carrot and courgette cake with soy butter topping.  And we laughed about how I qualify for a Motability car.  So I get my lapis blue mini cooper seven on 13 March.

I went to a workshop organised by Berkshire Cancer Rehabilitation and we discussed stress management, sleeping problems and fatigue – none of which I suffer from and perhaps in hindsight I didn’t need to be there.  But hearing from the others (none of which had a terminal diagnosis) they have all sorts of issues – so I look at them and think how lucky I am that I can get out of bed and get on with  life. My diary  has multiple entries each day – not all cake eating by the way but there’s all the therapies and sporty activities I do..wp_20170220_001
Anyway, back to the workshop, when we stopped for lunch that day we went over to the church where the village deli and coffee shop are based.  There I had a slice of chocolate cake with some old fashioned silver balls on top!

I met Ruth this week – we meet every year to celebrate our birthdays which both fall in December.  Our waitress at Darwin’s, Fenchurch Street was really bemused by this ”you mean one time in a year”.  We were very restrained and didn’t eat cake.  I was still thinking about the huge portion of pavlova I had at Marion’s the night before.  .

Jeremy and I waited 1.5 hours for Mr Cecil, the surgeon, who was delayed on a train and after 30 minutes of absorbing all his options (which I have added to the 2017 page), we went to the hospital’s Blue Café for something to eat.  wp_20170224_001-1They had set up for lunch so Jeremy had a colourful salad and I had a tasty cabbage soup (I’d have never made that choice once upon a time) followed by a celebratory slice of sticky toffee cake….The next day we did the first of the Wessex White Horse Walks.  I was ready for a sit down but we still had about 2 miles to go! I’ve created a Walks page for the 9 Horse Walks under Wellbeing and Exercise.

 

 

I’ve also created a page a new Favourites page for my favourite Classic FM Music.

Breaking News…

We saw Mr Cecil, the King of the Bowels at Basingstoke, one of two centres of excellence for the nether regions.  A lovely, lovely man. He is pleased with my shrinkage and can suggest some pick and mix  options which I need to consider.  One end of the range is major surgery (in hospital 2/3 weeks and  2 months recovery) followed possibly by minor surgery (depends if a temporary stoma was attached) then followed by chemo through to the other end (of the range that is) which is do nothing but monitor with quarterly scans.  He can also offer  a laparoscopy followed by the major surgery, or chemo or nothing.  Plenty to think about but of course he cannot guarantee that doing any of these will cure me.  You may understand why I had lie down when I got home………

Week of 13 February

Another lovely week! Jeremy and I went on a very interesting audio tour of the House of Parliament and had  delicious afternoon tea there in the Terrace Pavilion beside the Thames.  They source all their food from Britian – and so they should you say! wp_20170215_010. It was fascinating to be in the locations that frequently appear on the TV.  Did you know that Michael Jackson, on a tour, wanted to buy the throne in the House of Lords!!

Sourcing organic foods to ensure we get the full nutritional value is a project in itself.  We have bought organic vegetables from the supermarket and from our old farm shop near Odiham when I was in the area.  My diet includes more cruciferous vegetables – I have been blitzing brussel sprouts and the best accompaniment I have found is an orange with some milled flaxseed! The onion family have good anti cancer properties so I am increasing my intake of leeks, onions and shallots…. and mints to sort out bad breath……

Had another pamper session at the Pink Place and had some valentine nails and a relaxing reflexology session.  One of the ladies made nut free carrot cake which had raisons instead and was lovely and moist.

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For the first time, I met someone who had taken the same targeted drug as myself and had worse problems with her skin than I did.    Just shows how we respond differently to the same chemo drugs.

I had a lovely short break in Brixham visiting Gaynor.   We enjoyed walks to Berry Head and the café there with its homemade menu.  Our cake was banana, fudge and pecan! Yes we shared it!  And when in sunny Dartmouth we walked to the Castle and mooched around the town  enjoying some delicious cakes in the French patisserie, Saveurs .  Here’s my coffee mousse cake.  Exquisite!Another great week!

Week of 6 February

wp_20170210_001-1We had part 2 of our Nutrition course at Maggie’s in Oxford with Jennifer from Pillar of Health.  We heard about dairy, carbs and sugar this week. It’s been really interesting.  Still not keen on the healthy cakes though.  We had ‘chocolate brownies’ made with red kidney beans. Yuk!   But in the last week I have started going organic with the veg.  Anyway, applying the 80:20 rule I can be bad 20% of the time…..Can’t I?. Shirley came over to discuss our trip to Milan and she brought with her some scrumptious home made cup cakes: Gin and Tonic flavour complete with a slice of lime and coffee with Bailys in the icing.  Delicious!  We reminisced about Celia Imrie in the  Calendar Girls!!   wp_20170208_003

wp_20170209_003Julia and I went to the Lightbox at Woking and after sharing a coffee and walnut cake at the café there we saw the Henry Moore exhibition. It was fascinating to see the pebbles he took inspiration from to make his giant sculptures.  Did you know he was a war artist?  I didn’t.  We stayed in Woking for lunch and had a healthy Lebanese meze at Jeita.  Just thought I’d add that in……

I had lunch with Sue while I was in Oxford at the Roof Top restaurant at the Ashmolean and we didn’t eat cake!!  But I would like to thank her for the Donny Osmond’s swp_20161017_004ignature she got via her neighbour who works for Jimmy’s fanclub.  We both agree that the afternoon tea we had last year at the Folly in Oxford is one of the best we have experienced.  See for yourself:….

 

I met Anne Marie this week at the Flower Pot for lunch.  It was great to talk about training and Myers wp_20170207_001Briggs.  The old memories came flooding back.  Here am I looking a little flushed after eating some tasty home made tomato soup  followed by a dainty slice of chocolate cake.  But it did have the right proportion of sponge to icing!

Mum and I met for coffee and shared a rock cake at the Yew Tree garden centre – I don’t mean to put here at the end but it seems that we go out at the end of each week….Not as good as her rock cakes!

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Week of 30 January

The MacMillan’s guide I was given last week on ‘Healthy Eating and Cancer’ says  ”sugar in your diet doesn’t directly increase the risk of cancer or encourage it to grow”.  Goodo!!  But at a Nutrition workshop held by Maggie’s in Oxford’s Churchill hospital this week, I learnt that sugar ”depletes the body of essential nutrients and interferes with the fine balance of bacteria in the gut”. Oh dear!!  I’ve had a few cakey exploits this week to tell you about.  At Maggie’s, we sampled a plate of Tofu Cakes! Yuk!  The monthly Essebourne Ladies Lunch was this week: Val, Norma, Margaret, Cathie, Sandra, Heather and I enjoyed another delicious lunch!.  And, although not cakes as such, we had some lovely petit fours to finish off……  Which plate would you prefer??

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I guess the highlight this week was hearing the results of my CT scan from Dr Jackson at the Basing Unit that ”there has been greater than average shrinkage”.  More on my 2017 page.

wp_20170202_002Jeremy and I shared a (healthy) granola bar in the Blue Café – part of Basingstoke’s Arc Cancer Centre while we were there.  Secretly I hankered over the rocky road!!  And that night we celebrated with a glass of Bouvet (a lush sparkling red best served cold)!

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So also this week,  I met Carolyn to take her to the Tea Cosy but got there and found it is closed on Tuesdays and so we headed back to Mocha Choc for a cuppa! Next time!  The Supper Club ladies: Pam, Judy, Marion, Alex and Ann and I met at at the Pineapple Palace where I was the only one to eat cake!  A lemon drizzle with a lovely crunchy topping!  I had tap dancing that evening so I may have worked off some calories….I was back at the Pineapple Palace a few days later for a ceramic course with Sophie to make tea light holders.  Here’s me at work cutting out hearts in my clay with a slide of coffee cake on the side!  Perfect! Jeremy and I did do a 6 mile walk in the afternoon!!wp_20170205_001

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I said there were a lot of cakey exploits this week…. Mum and I went to Angelina’s at Camp Hopson for a coffee and natter – we were very restrained – we had a little pastry each! The filling was similar to praline – very nice – and just enough not to undo all the hard work I had put into Aqua Aerobics about 2 hours earlier….