Friday, November 27, 2009

Our second turkey day post transplant #2

I was going to title this post "Our first turkey day...", then realized that it wasn't. Last Thanksgiving, I was still in the 100 day post transplant cocoon, living in a one bedroom apartment in Houston and severely restricted. Chris and I celebrated with steak and mashed potatoes. My steak was cooked to perdition to guarantee safety and the mashed potatoes were instant. We were just so happy to be together that it didn't matter.

This year, we also celebrated alone, but it was blissful since there was no set schedule and it didn't matter if the asparagus finished cooking before the potatoes. We finally bought dining room furniture after 15 years of either hunching over the coffee table or eating at the pass through.

The table and chairs arrived two weeks ago, with a hitch. Four of the six chairs had one short leg each. The delivery driver caught the defect on one of the chairs and left it on the truck as a refused delivery. I didn't discover the other three until after he'd left. I won't pain you with the finer details of dealing with the furniture distributor's service department. Ultimately, four new chairs were ordered with the intention of swapping the defective ones out.

The four chairs came in last week, with the same defect. The service manager ordered another four chairs and replacement legs one week ago yesterday. I haven't heard anything since. I'll name names in another post depending on how things resolve. Ultimately, there are two chairs which is the perfect number for just us at the moment. I would like the other chairs, though, since they have been paid for.

We had a really nice day and I managed to sneak in a nap. Aside from a GvH flare up of my skin, everything else seems fine. My head and torso are covered in a fine rash in varying stages of intensity. My forehead and abdomen are suffering the brunt of my immune system's aggression. You won't be able to see it in the pictures, but trust me, it's not pretty.

I've been using minoxidil for almost a month now and have noticed that my hair isn't falling out as much. I probably won't see any new growth for another month if I get any at all. In the mean time, I'm better able to camouflage the diffuse thinness. Again, the pictures won't show the finer details. It looks like I have a full head of hair, but trust me, I don't. I still have the monk's tonsure and overall thinness/diffuse baldness. If new growth doesn't start happening by the end of week 8, I'll get serious about a wig.

Believe it or not, that's my plate.

My sweet hubby.

This is one of my favorite wines. It's got a really agressive, rich flavor with just the right amount of earthiness and a smooth, smoky finish. I discovered it four or five years ago when it was a paltry $6 per bottle. This is the first time that I've bought a bottle since I was diagnosed and it took me forever to find it since the label has changed since last I saw a bottle. It's now $14 per bottle which leads me to believe that the secret is out on this little gem. I'm not allowed to have alcohol yet, so Chris had to fly solo on this one.

It's me!

Me, again.

Sweet potato pie and my hand vac that I forgot to put up.

Akiko's first Thanksgiving. Once she got a taste of turkey, she had to have as much as she could beg off of Chris. Believe me, she was persistent. Etsuko wasn't interested. She's a big fan of cat kibble and would rather have that over people food any day. That doesn't stop her from wanting to see what's on your plate or begging for a little of what you're having. Very rarely does she eat people food.

I'm forever having to coach Chris into smiling for pictures. He does the same one everytime he's asked to pose for a picture.

One of my most absolute favorite things is when Chris gets a serious case of the giggles. I love his joie de vivre when he loses himself in something silly and can't stop laughing. It's usually at something I've done, or inadvertently said. I managed to get him going while I had the camera out. He's requested that I not post the pictures, but I'm afraid I have to for posterity's sake. You get to see him smiling candidly and it's one of my favorite images.

Lastly, this is my little brother, John. My sister-in-law forwarded this to me yesterday. John's just finishing Navy bootcamp and I couldn't be more proud of him. He's a southern boy freezing his tail off in the mid-west at the moment. I know Mandie can't wait to see him once he graduates.

He is the spitting image of our dad, who I know would also have been proud of John.


PJ said...

You both look mahvelous.

Nancy said...

Hi Ann & Chris,
I love the pics. They brighten my day and I'm sure do that same for so many others.

Your Thanksgiving Day spread looked amazing. I'm sure you are a fantastic cook. And your hair is so cute... don't cover it with a wig. Trust me, wigs are uncomfortable, hot and itchy. I really only wore my wig once to a wedding and tore it off, in the car, on the way home.

Glad you had a great Turkey Day. Many, many, many more to follow.... love, n

Susan C said...

I really loved this post. Your dinner looks fabulous and so do you. I had a dream about you last night and got to meet you and hug you in person.

I'm hungry for some brown turkey gravy. My sis-in-law was in charge of the gravy, and she (and my bro) like a white, creamy gravy.

Kacie said...

You look beautiful, Ann, and you both look so happy. So glad things are going well!

Tina said...

Ann, you are gorgeous! And I am so happy you and Chris had a wonderful thanksgiving together. So very happy.

Ronni Gordon said...

Love the photos. You look great! Your hair looks fine. I am interested that they gave you something for it. You know I'm having a similar problem with bald spots and thin hair. Well anyway whatever you've done or not done, you do look beautiful. And Chris looks cute. Love the little smile.

Ann said...

PJ, thank you!

Nancy, for some obscene reason, my hair photographs well. Trust me, there are bald patches. I'm an average cook who likes to eat. :) Love you!

Susan, We're planning on a CA trip next year. I can't wait to give you and Nancy a hug, then drag you to all the little food dives I can find. :) I grew up with cream gravy, exclusively. I think it's the reason for my jus obsession.

Kacie, I've missed your comments!

Tina, I love my Tina! I also chose to overlook the whole twilight thing.

Ronni, thank you. I had to ask for the minoxidil, repeatedly. I've heard, "You're hair will grow back," one too many times from my transplant doc. It has helped to plump up the existing follicles. 4 more weeks before I know if I'll have any new growth. There are some truly excellent pictures of Chris cracking up that I didn't post out of deferrence to him. :)

Wiley said...

Your Thanksgiving dinner looks great and so do you! Congratulations! BTW, Malbec is one of our favorites, too!

Jim said...


You look great and are headed in the right direction! Dinner looked tasty, and it's nice to see Chris smiling. Cheers to now and 2010!