Thursday, June 20, 2019

We Had Quite the Morning

Hi there, gang.

We had quite the morning.  We saw Dr. Mannina the Radiology Oncologist at 8:30.

He informed us that Dom had broken ribs on the right, new lesions on the left, and a large lesion on his right hip.

A year or so ago was when Dom had a Plasmacytoma on his right hip.  That's when he fell out of an 8-year complete remission.

So, here's the plan:

We go in Tuesday afternoon to get measured for a contraption that will hold Dom's arms over his head.

He'll get about 30-minute sessions when they're ready to get started.  Dr. Mannina is going to blast the hip, and "graze" both sides of his ribcage so as not to affect any internal organs.

He sent us downstairs for Dom's 8th Darzalex infusion.

When we arrived at the infusion center, the gang had Dom all set up in his favorite "corner office".  A lot of room and not sitting on top of anybody.

The volunteer already had our Diet Cokes, candy bar, pillow and blanket waiting for him.  This guy, Richard is a DOLL.  His wife is currently getting treatment for Breast Cancer, so he knows all too much about the ups and downs of treatment.

Our nurse cleaned his port and started the steroid infusion.

Brian, our favorite nurse from Dr. Calabresi office next door came running in...  "STOP  STOP!".

After consulting each other, the 2 doctors didn't want any Darzalex in his system for next week.

Sooooo...  Fitting on Tuesday, then 10 Radiation Treatments, THEN back on the Darzalex.

As you guys all know, the Radiation works wonders for pain, so we're happy to get started.


Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Dom's in a LOT of Pain

He had a full body bone-scan done a couple of weeks ago.  Images below are showing his "hot-spots".  Breaks, cracks or lesions.  It's showing the bones attempting to regenerate.

The first image below is untouched:

On this image I circled his "hot-spots":

We think that all of these broken ribs are a result of the 10 radiation blasts on his C-3 Disc.  They caused his throat to close up.  THEN the coughing began.

His ribs were already weak from lesions, and the coughing snapped them.

They did an MRI on his right hip after consulting an Orthopedic Surgeon.  The guy wasn't concerned that this would cause Dom to fall, as the hot-spot isn't in the socket of his hip.

We're guessing that it's a new lesion.

This goes on and on and on!  My guy is a "Hurtin' Little Cowboy", I'm afraid!

Friday, May 24, 2019


BBQ Season is upon us!  We're really looking forward to breaking out these meat rubs this weekend.

We LOVE Pereg products!

Exotic Spice Blends Give An Irresistible Middle Eastern Accent To Chops, Ribs, Chicken, Fish, Even Veggies

Ras el Hanout

Clifton, NJ, MAY 21,  2019 – What is it about Middle Eastern cuisine that’s so flavorfully satisfying? From Turkish kabobs and Iraqui kibbeh to Israeli shawarma and Moroccan tagines, something magical happens when fresh ingredients and hearty seasonings meet over an open flame.

Enter the meat rub, the essential secret of every Middle Eastern pantry.

Closer to home, it’s well-known that a good rub is a grill chef’s best friend. Rubs seal in flavor, form a tasty crust, add color, and have a long shelf life. They’re also easy to use. No need for marinades because rubs do all the work. Best of all, they impart an addictive flavor to everything they touch.

But the term “meat rub” is a bit of a misnomer, say the spice experts at Pereg Natural Foods. Classic blends like ras el hanout and koobah partner as beautifully with fish and vegetables as they do with steaks and briskets.

In the Middle East, families hand down their secret spice blends from generation to generation. That’s why there are as many variations of rubs as there are households!

But you don’t have to be an heir to access the traditional ingredients and proportions behind these exotic mixtures. Pereg scours the world for fresh, natural, 100% pure spices, bringing more than 100 years of expertise and quality to the table.

Get to know some of these Middle Eastern-style secrets when the grill heats up.


Pereg’s Koobah starts with baharat, a ubiquitous Israeli and Mediterranean staple, and then adds warm layers of cinnamon, allspice, rose, nutmeg, and cardamom for a complex finish. It makes an excellent dry rub for grilled or roast lamb, salmon, and chicken. It’s also delicious when sprinkled into burgers, mixed with hummus, or tossed onto vegetables (particularly corn on the cob and eggplant) before roasting.


It wouldn’t be shish kabab without kabab seasoning. Douse cubes of chicken, beef, or lamb liberally with Pereg’s hearty mash-up (paprika, black pepper, coriander, garlic, and cumin) and thread on skewers with vegetables of your choice. Grill over medium heat until fully cooked. Serve on warm pita bread – also prepared on the grill – with tahini and a side of cucumber salad for an authentic version of Israeli street food.


Another food truck favorite, shawarma is easy to make with Pereg’s perfect mixture of cumin, coriander, allspice, garlic, paprika, turmeric, and salt. Simply rub Shawarma spice blend onto thin slices of chicken, beef, lamb, or turkey. Toss meat into a zipper top bag with olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, and red onion. Marinate overnight and grill. Serve on warm pita and plenty of garnishes: tahini, pickles, cucumbers, tomatoes, lettuce, onions, cilantro...

Ras el Hanout

Traditional recipes for this Moroccan seasoning call for up to100 ingredients!  You could make your own, or turn to Pereg’s intriguing blend of cinnamon, coriander, nutmeg, allspice, cumin, ginger, turmeric, cardamom, and more. Ras el hanout brings aromatic warmth, a hint of sweetness, and complexity to anything from burgers to brisket. A key component of soups, stews, and tagines, it can also be used a table-top condiment. Sprinkle it on vegetable dishes or even over popcorn for a punch of flavor.

ABOUT PEREG - Pereg was established in 1906, and is based in Clifton, NJ. They first became known for their vast variety of pure and natural spices and spice blends, more than 60 in all, from traditional favorites to exotics from around the culinary world.

Today Pereg produces an array of all-natural products that includes ancient grains and ancient grain blends, gluten free pasta, couscous, rice, gluten-free cereal and much more. Pereg Natural Foods products are available at select retailers throughout the US and Canada, and on their website,

Pereg manufactures all its products from start to finish, controlling the quality from the sourcing until the product is packed and ready for the consumer. All Pereg products are kosher certified by both the Orthodox Union (OU) and CRC, are dairy and lactose-free as well as all natural, with no additives or preservatives. Many products are also certified gluten-free and non-GMO. Follow Pereg Natural Foods on, Twitter @pereggourmet and Instagram @peregnatural.

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Memorial Day Weekend is Upon us!

Man, the time has really flown!  I can't believe that it's almost June.

Dom continues to do well with his Darzalex infusions and we're extremely hopeful. 

We're going in for #4 on Thursday, then have NOTHING to do until Tuesday's blood work!


Looking forward to a long lazy weekend. We're looking at the mid-nineties all weekend!  These will cool us down- 

The good folks at Sparkling Ice sent me samples, and we're going to experiment with these recipes:

Peach Sangria

1 peach, sliced
½ orange, sliced
¾ cup peach brandy
1 bottle white wine, chilled
4 cups Sparkling Ice Classic Lemonade

Place peaches, oranges, cranberries and brandy in a pitcher then lightly muddle. Add wine and Sparkling Ice Classic Lemonade and stir. Serve over ice and garnish with a peach slice.

Spiced Sparkling Sangria

1/2 Apple, sliced
1 orange, sliced
1/2 pear, sliced
Cinnamon Stick
1 bottle red wine
1/2 cup Brandy
1 cup Sparkling Ice Orange Mango

Cut fruit into equal sizes and place in pitcher with the cinnamon stick. Pour in the bottle of wine, bourbon, and Sparkling Ice Orange Mango over fruit. Gently stir to combine. Cover and chill in the refrigerator for 3 hours, up to 2 days. Serve cold over ice.

Sparkling Pimm's Punch

1 blood orange, sliced
1 lemon, sliced
2 cucumbers, sliced
1 lb whole strawberries
1 bunch fresh mint leaves
One 750-ml bottle Pimm's No. 1
1 cup gin
4 1/2 cups Sparkling Ice Strawberry Lemonade

In a large punch bowl, combine the blood oranges, lemons, cucumbers, strawberries, and half of the mint. Pour in the Pimm's, gin, and Sparkling Ice Strawberry Lemonade, stir until combined.
Fill glasses with ice and ladle in the punch, garnish with the remaining mint and serve.

Tropical Flower Punch

1 cup of coconut rum
1 cup of mango juice
2 cups of orange juice
¼ cup of grenadine
2 cups Sparkling Ice Coconut Pineapple
Edible flowers, for garnish

In a large punch bowl, combine the coconut rum, mango juice, grenadine, Sparkling Ice Coconut Pineapple and stir. Fill glasses with ice and ladle in the punch, garnish with edible flowers serve.

Monday, May 13, 2019

Dom's Progress with Darzalex

We went to the Slidell Cancer Center for Dom's 2nd Darzalex infusion on Thursday.

First, they gave him Tylenol and drips of Steroids, Pepsid and Benedryl.

Then they brought out the bag of Darzalex.  It broke open!  (Which contaminated it).  There was no more Darzalex in the building.  They would have had to drive an hour round-trip to get some, but it was already 11 am.  That would have kept us there very late.

So, they apologized and asked us to return on Friday morning. 

I'm happy to say that the Darzalex infusion was cut down to only 4 hours!  We were at the Cancer Center for a total of 6 hours!  We were tickled, as the week before was a 10 1/2 hour visit.  During the infusion, the pharmacist stopped by.  He checked his latest shipment of bags and found 4 or 5 defective bags.  His new policy is to check the bags before mixing up the medicine.

Once again, Dom had NO ADVERSE reactions!  We're extremely hopeful and feeling positive!

He's doing just great!