Nov 30, 2019


It took me all damn day, but I finally decided on two projects for my Christmas stitching basket.


For the entire basket.

(heavy sigh)

First up is a Laura J Perin canvas work piece:

I haven't worked on canvas in quite some time, so this will make for a nice change of pace.

The second is a Charlie Brown Christmas cross stitch, complete with matching project bag, accessory tote, and grime guard:

Be still my heart, right?

But tonight I am exhausted, so methinks I will just play with Hoity Toity a bit and have the official start of holiday stitching commence tomorrow afternoon when we get home from church and I've thrown a few decorations here and there.

Hope your Saturday was swell!


I was going to save that graphic for another time, but I think it's the perfect sentiment for the day. I beat myself up pretty good yesterday when I came off treatment at 112.8kg.

That's a whopping 248 pounds, Dearies.

I wallowed and self-sabotaged and bitched and moaned and complained to nobody in particular, and then I put myself to bed early and decided to call it a day.

Today is a new one, and that means that I have the great blessing of starting fresh. I can right the ship, get back on track, and adjust my course. Three lousy pounds is not going to be the sum total of my experience on this big blue marble, so I'm hitching up my socks and moving onward.

Many of you comment about my strong will and determination. I have two answers for that. One, is that this isn't about fitting into a teeny weeny yellow polka dot bikini, and two, I come by this bull-headedness honestly. My Grandma Loukos used to say "Connie Dough, it's a good thing you're named after your aunt and uncle, because you are a little bull head just like they are."

What can I say? I might not be the brightest or most talented or strongest or prettiest girl in the room, but I've got a head like a big block of granite and I will bang it against the wall with the best of them! My mom was all of 5'4" tall and weighed maybe 110 pounds, but she could re-arrange a room full of furniture, mow the grass, clean the house, and keep us from killing each other without smudging her lipstick.

In other words, I seem to come from a long line of little bull heads.

So now that I'm getting on with it, there is damn good to be savored and a paper and magazines to be read, and Christmas decorations to be contemplated. My to-do list is flexible, though, and if I don't make it past the paper it will still be a very good day indeed.

Happy Saturday to one and all. What are you doing to make yourself happy today? Come tell me all about it!

Nov 29, 2019


Selfie on Wednesday:
And selfie today:

Nov 27, 2019


Good morning, and a hale and hearty hello,  Dearies!

Well, I seem to have lost a complete twenty-four hours.

I went to the d-chair yesterday, but had more issues than Vogue with my treatment. Blood pressure crashes, severe cramping, tummy name it...I had it. JB managed to get me home, but I have no recollection of anything that happened after that. I. Was. Out.

But today has dawned, and I am upright and almost through my second cup of damn good and the paper. I had a nice long video visit with my nephew puppy tot, Bosco, checked my Thanksgiving provisions, and got myself cozy in the Happy Chair with West Wing and some stitching.

In other words...I am ready to ROCK this Futzingday!

The holiday is upon us! I am looking forward to watching the parade and cooking and eating tomorrow, and I promise to be very very careful...only a small portion of each thing and a nice long walk in the afternoon. Friday will be another d-day and then on Saturday I am going to tart this place up like a Radio City Rockette!

I hope that you are having a splendid day and that you are doing everything you want and nothing you don't. Come tell me all about it!

Nov 25, 2019


I confess that my weekend was a complete and total blur of nothingness. I was supposed to go to 8am Mass and then dialysis yesterday, but didn't quite ever make it out of the big girl sleigh bed. I don't know what my problem was exactly, but I was sickety sick sick.

Today, though, was a totally different story. I got up at a decent hour, had my two cups of damn good, watched a little West Wing (I'm bingeing it again), got a big burst of energy, and cleaned the apartment like an Amish lady.

I somehow even managed to do four loads of laundry and clean and organize the fridge, freezer, and pantry and then hop in a nice hot shower and put on clean clothes.

Will wonders never cease?

Rich should be here shortly with all of the Thanksgiving feasting provisions. We got the bird on Saturday, but he insisted on shopping for all of the other things today. This will be an enormous test of my ability to go with the flow, since I am sure that his list is sensible and proportioned correctly, as opposed to mine which would require two carts and a herd of sherpas to get it up here.

(The menu will be the same, but we're going to try to cook for two this year instead of two and twenty.)

Wish me luck.

If all goes according to plan, tomorrow will be a dialysis and Notre Dame basketball day and Wednesday will be a day to rest and maybe do a little bill paying and paperwork. Thursday is Thursday, and then Friday will be another d-day. Saturday will be decorating day and then hopefully Sunday will get us back into routine with Mass and breakfast out.

So the week is planned, the house and Yours Truly are clean, and the holidays are upon us, Dearies!

Hoity Toity continues...I'm going to get right back to it as soon as I leave you:

Happy Monday! Do something fun and come tell me all about it!


Nov 24, 2019

Nov 23, 2019


 Is it wrong that I love this whole Saturday morning in bed thing so much? I swear, sometime around Wednesday afternoon I start thinking "Just a few more days until Saturday in bed time!"

Today the frost is on the pumpkins out there in Hoosierville, but I am cozy and toasty here in the big girl sleigh bed with lots of good things to keep me occupied:
I am about thirty pages into this book, but have no shame in telling you that I have read those thirty pages about four times. I want this book to last forever and am literally savoring each and every word of it. I decided to really truly enjoy it, rather than gobble it up in one sitting, and my pacing has paid off. This one is definitely worth it, in my opinion.

Of course, there is the requisite damn good. This is cup number two, which is the one that I enjoy. Cup number one is purely medicinal, and very rarely remembered. Methinks I might need to investigate the new Starbucks power coffee with twice the caffeine. That way I could get my morning jolt and reduce the amount of fluid intake!

I will get up at the crack of dawn tomorrow and go to early Mass and then to the d-chair. Because of Thanksgiving, I am on a Sunday-Tuesday-Friday rotation this week. That means that today will be an absolute rest day for me so that I can have enough oomph to cook and enjoy all of the festivities. It will be just Magoo and I, but as you probably figured, I will cook enough to feed a small country.

As soon as I read the paper and get a good hot shower, I am going to settle in with Hoity Toity. I have completed the bottom portion of the border and a little bit of each side border, so now it's on to the middle areas! I'd show you a pic, but at the moment, it's sleeping nicely on the ottoman, and my toes are too toasty here in the bed to get up to retrieve it.  Forgive me?

So that's it for now, Dearies. I hope you're having your own bit of happy. wherever you are. Please do something lovely for yourself today, even if it just means looking in a mirror and smiling at what you see!

Back to the bliss!

Nov 22, 2019



Nov 21, 2019


Raise your hand if you saw this one coming....

The exam room door opened and Dr Goggins walked in (looking totally handsome in his scrubs by the way) and I immediately burst into the ugly hiccuping snotting all over the front of my Woman Within clearance sale shirt cry right there in front of him, JB, and everybody.

It's a go.

As of 10:10 this morning, I am officially cleared by the Indiana University transplant team to receive a new kidney.

A living donor kidney is obviously the best outcome, but now I am officially activated on the UNOS list for a cadaver kidney when one becomes available and it's my turn. Living donation would mean a new kidney within a matter of weeks/months.  A cadaver kidney might be another three to five years.


Dr Goggins took amazing pity on me today and was very clear that this weight loss fight is not over. If I re-gain that weight the deal is off and I'll go right back to square one. Instead, he would like to see me just concentrate of steadily losing so that I have a buffer/wiggle room for the occasional celebration/slip up.

Operation GO was all about reaching a goal. I've obsessed about the number on the scale (and rightly so) for months now, and have driven myself to the point of hysteria with every ounce both up and down. It worked...but just barely.

Operation KEEP GOING is going to be different. Instead of setting a hard number goal, I am going to just try to make better choices and add a little exercise into the mix. That's it. No more counting almonds or weighing yogurt or having a nervous breakdown over a hot dog. I am going to eat food and live my life and try to get off my big fat heiney each day and take a walk or go for a swim.

I am still going to blog my progress on Fridays, Dearies, because I really am convinced that baring my soul on this here blog is the only thing that helped me get to this point. But instead of trying to meet a specific end weight, I am just going to make the goal to weigh less than the week before.  That's it. Whether it's one ounce or one pound...just less that the Friday before. And in between I'm going to stop obsessing and just get on with it,

If that number goes in the wrong direction, God forbid, then I know what needs to be done to get back on track. But for now, my brain needs rest and it needs to get back to fun stuff like stitching and annoying my JB.

I would be completely remiss if I did not end this post with the most sincere thank you of my like. Your constant love and support and encouragement and tips and noodges and help have been positively invaluable to me. I. Am. Just. Not. Worthy. Of. You.

Time for some stitching, I think. It is just as grey and rainy and gloomy as it can be outside today, so I am looking forward to some cozy time with Hoity Toity and the Flosstubes!

Happy, happy, GO DAY, Dearies!  Onward!

Nov 20, 2019


Came off treatment at111.6 today, Dearies.

That's 245.5 pounds.

We'll see what happens tomorrow.


It's D Day, Dearies. My off weight after treatment will be the one that I take to my appointment with Dr. Goggins tomorrow. Mercifully, they use your post-treatment weight for measure and not your day-of weight. (Dialysis patients typically gain fluid weight in between treatments, and it can be as much as five to ten pounds in some cases!)

Another thing to consider is the rinse back, which is the weight of the fluid and last little bit of blood that they put back in as you come off the machine.

Oh....and we do all of this in kilograms, which are the equivalent of 2.2 pounds.

My on weight is113kg/248.6 pounds.
Minus treatment will hopefully be 3kg/6.6 pounds.
Plus rinse back of .4kg/.88 pounds
Should equal an off weight of 110.4kg/242.88 pounds

Pray my blood pressure holds out, Dearies. If it crashes, they will have to push fluid back in, and that will mean added weight.

Oey with the numbers already!!

Thank you for indulging me these last many weeks. I promise that I will just shut up about it already and will convert my every waking moment/obsessions to something other than weight loss, Dr Goggins, blood pressure, and dialysis treatments. my defense...this hasn't been a vanity exercise or the desire to fit into smaller pants. This is me wanting to live and doing everything I can to do so.

Plus, as soon as I get this new kidney we are going to have the mother of all stitchy retreats/celebration party/extravaganzas here in Hoosierville, and then I'm going to make it my business to travel from place to place and terrorize LNS's and stitchers everywhere!

OK...time to get under my blanket and watch the Flosstube. I am weeks behind and miss peeking into everybody's virtual windows!

God Bless and keep every single one of your dear hearts for putting up with me!

Nov 19, 2019


I'm here, but decidedly...blurry. I'm not sure if it's a d-chair hangover, sleepiness, or the gloomy weather, but my brain feels a bit elsewhere at the moment. The second cup of damn good is almost complete, and methinks there might be the necessity of a third today.  Fortunately, my schedule is full of a whole lotta nothing, so life will take me where it will...

Hoity Toity continues to delight:

And a new candle/crackpot Spinster fireplace sets the tone. This one is cinnamon...
(That's not a shrine, by the way. The photo needed a new place to live, and I like being able to see it from the Happy Chair. So no need to chastise me, Betty, for worshipping a dog.)

It would appear that our Tuesday is off and running with me dragging behind it, Dearies. What's on your Tuesday agenda? Come tell me all about it!

Nov 17, 2019

Nov 15, 2019




That sound you heard was me having a fight with consciousness and losing. Me and the aggressive dialysis? Um, maybe not so much.

Exhibit A (blood pressure 110/70):

Exhibit B (blood pressure 90/50):

Exhibit C (Whoopsie Daisy...blood pressure 70/30):

Poor Lorie...this happened at shift change, so one minute I was telling Marcella I was starting to feel a little "tunnelly", and the next thing I knew Lorie was squeezing the saline bag for all it was worth to revive me.

(Tunnelly means I suddenly had the sensation of being whooshed backwards through a tunnel.)

(And not in the good way.)

Damn, drat, and phooey anyway. That fluid return meant that I came off the bloody scale .1 kg heavier than last Friday...a gain of almost a quarter pound. 🤬 I had really hoped to be able to light the fireworks today and unfurl the Mission Accomplished banner, but I guess that will just have to wait until next week.

Yes, I know that there is no way Dr Goggins will deny me for a fraction of a pound, but I am a completely over-achieving eager beaver perfectionist maniacal lunatic, and I want to walk in that exam room five pounds under his goal.

So, pray for me this weekend, Dearies. I am in the home stretch and not giving up now!  Who ever the patron saint of weight loss is better be sittin' up in the buggy, because I need all the help I can get!



Here's progress on Hoity Toity from the last few days:

And here's me doing my thing on a Friday, wondering who dressed me today (nothing matches!):

Oey with the blues already, Dearies! I need to snap 'outta this so that I can get on with the weekend. There is laundry to be done, soup to be made, and general shenanigans to be gotten up to. No time for sloth or feeling sorry for myself.

Next year I need to find a stitchy retreat during this week (or make one myself).

Dr. Goggins will be here Thursday! Can you believe GO day is almost here? I am asking for a very aggressive treatment today to take me below goal weight, but we'll see if I can tolerate it. I have my meds to keep my blood pressure up and a team of techs and nurses cheering me on. If I behave and have a very careful few days, it is assured that I will be able to look Dr G in his handsome face and say "I did it. It was hard, but getting a new life should be something that is, and I'm willing to fight for it with everything I've got left." LET'S. GO.

So that's me today....a delightful moosh of blahs, blues, and b*lls. I suppose it's not a bad combination, given the circumstances.

What are you up to today? 

Nov 13, 2019

Nov 12, 2019


My mom has been gone thirty two years today. There are sometimes when it feels like yesterday, and others when it feels like more than a lifetime ago. I never thought about it, but the placement of her photo next to Dad's means that they literally look over me as I sit in my Happy Chair and live my life.

On the other wall of the corner hangs the "girl reading"needlepoint that Mom stitched when I was born, so I suppose it's natural that I would feel so very happy when I'm cozy in the chair with stitching or a good book or just my memories for company.

I have an errand to run for the JB this afternoon, and then I think I will come home and settle in with Hoity Toity and Dr. Zhivago. It was Mom's favorite movie, but I've never brought myself to the place to watch it.

Maybe today is the day to do just that.

Thursday will be three years since Stewey's passing, and although there is a heavy sadness about me this week, there is also a lot of peace knowing that he is in good company. Between my mom and dad and Uncle Connie and grandparents and other loved ones that are gone, I figure he is getting completely spoiled with love and turkey bacon treats and will be quite plump when next we meet.

Happy Tuesday, Dearies. Love one another deeply and well today!

Nov 11, 2019


I made good progress on HT over the weekend, Dearies! I decided to work the black background as I go rather than save it until the end, and am glad I did so. I think it really makes the colors pop, don't you? Such a pretty design, and I'm loving every minute of it!

Short and sweet today. We're having our first measurable snow, and I need to leave a little early for the d-chair.  Hope I can find my brush/ice scraper thingie!

Nov 10, 2019

Nov 9, 2019


In my 53 years on this planet, I don't think I've ever had a more satisfying ritual. This is the fourth or fifth week in a row that I have had a Saturday morning coffee in the big girl sleigh bed, and I am just delighted that it still continues to make my whole weekend.

The binge watch of Downton started it...married women were served breakfast in bed. And, although, I remain your faithful spinster, once I started it I couldn't stop. I come by this honestly, I suppose, since I always though room service breakfast in bed at a hotel was the very height of luxury.

(What can I say? It doesn't take much to make me happy.)

Today's agenda is modified to include absolutely nothing other than a few errands (library and grocery), a big pot of goulash on the stove, the Notre Dame game (if I can get it on the interwebs), and stitching.  Cleaning and purging and organizing will just have to wait for another day.

Look at me, getting all cocky and rebellious! You would think I was an actual adult in charge of my very own life or something! The truth is that I am just a bit too wiped out from the week to contemplate anything physical, and I want to be lazy and cozy and cozy and lazy until it's time to go to church tomorrow morning.

Speaking of....I'm going to treat myself to the 11:45 mass with the Notre Dame Folk Choir. The time is too late for JB's liking, so we usually hit "smells and bells" at 10, but tomorrow I am going to go sit in that glorious place and listen to that glorious choir. Do yourselves a favor and YouTube them...especially the African Gloria. It's a bit modern and maybe a little "hippy dippy" for some, but one of my favorite memories was of my dad sitting there in the pew on an Easter Sunday and when the drums and such started he kind of cocked his head (as if he disapproved), and then he started tapping his foot. At the end of the service, the congregation jumped up and gave them a standing was that good. I haven't heard them live since, so I am really looking forward to tomorrow!

But first there is a Saturday to be had and I should get on with it. The paper needs to be read, shoes need to be found, and library books need to be returned before provisioning can be completed.

I'll insert my progress pic from last night on Hoity Toity. I am making my was across the bottom row and hope to be filling in the black background soon!
Happy Saturday, Dearies! I hope your world is safe and healthy and happy and that your weekend is full of everything you want it to be! Come tell me all about it!

Nov 8, 2019




Nov 7, 2019


My appointment with the IU doc went exceedingly well. He was very happy with my chart and does not see any medical impediments to me being a successful recipient. Now I just need the green light from the surgeon (one pound to go!) and I will be officially activated on the UNOS list with two and a half years accrued thus far.

My blood type is B, which means my wait for a kidney will be a little longer than most...maybe up to another five years or so. If, however, a living donor becomes available, I am good to go!

Today will be nothing but Netflix and stitching. I was going to cook and clean, but decided to just enjoy the day instead. Saturday will be the day for housekeeping and such...right after my Downton Day abed with coffee and the paper.

All is well, Dearies! All is well. I am peaceful, calm, and happy and looking forward to the day. How about you?