Monday, February 18, 2019

Dom's Feb. Numbers

These were Dom's latest numbers.  The numbers in parentheses are from November 2018.

WBC:  6.5  (8.3 three months ago)

RBC:   3.9   (3.71)

HTC:    39.4  (36.3)

PLATELETS:   154  (188)

KAPPA Light Chains:   11.4  (16.5)

LAMBDA Light Chains:   119.9  (36.4)

RATIO:  0.10  (0.45)

M-Spike:  1.3  (Not Observed)

The M-Spike concerned us, but Dr. Calabreze wasn't concerned, as his Light Chains look so good.

He did ask us to make an appointment with Dr. Safah at the Tulane Cancer Center to get her feedback.  She can't get us in until late March.

Soooooo...  rolling right along here.  *sighing*

Friday, February 8, 2019

PETA’s “Kill Mill” Slaughtered Nearly 2,000 Cats and Dogs in 2018

PETA Killed 50 Times More Cats and Dogs Than it Adopted Out

WASHINGTON, DC (February 7, 2019) — People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has once again proved its name rings hollow. New figures from the animal “shelter” at PETA’s headquarters in Norfolk, Virginia show that of the 2,470 cats and dogs the group received in 2018, 1,771 of them were killed. PETA was single-handedly responsible for two-thirds of the cats and dogs killed by private animal shelters in Virginia.

Just 35 cats and dogs were adopted out. PETA’s adoption rate of barely 1% is shockingly low in comparison to the rest of Virginia, where the adoption rate at private shelters is 71% and at public shelters is 33%. PETA’s kill rate of 73% also greatly exceeds the average for Virginia shelters. 

The figures come from animal custody records filed with the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, which oversees animal shelters. 

Will Coggin, managing director of the Center for Consumer Freedom, commented: 

“The only thing PETA does better than kill pets is get attention for itself. No animal lover should support an organization that so callously disregards and discards four-legged friends. Do celebrity supporters of PETA like Tom Hardy and Casey Affleck condone this mass slaughter of pets?”

PETA had over $56 million in revenue in 2018, yet apparently would rather spend money on videos that feature vegetable genitalia than save pets. PETA has killed about 40,000 cats and dogs since 1998. PETA has killed perfectly healthy animals, including a Chihuahua that PETA representatives stole from a Virginia family and killed in 2014.

The figures come from official numbers published by the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services


Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Super Bowl Sunday Fun Day

Joe and Carina drove in from Pensacola for the night.  I cooked an 18# Country Ham from a pal in Kentucky.  I also made Siracha Deviled Eggs, Loaded Potato Salad, Cream Cheese and Pepper Jelly.  Made my first attempt at Tiramisu.  It was delicious!  

Joe brought over some Cleveland Mustard and a bottle of Peppermint Schnapps.

Sadie was in HEAVEN with all of the attention that she received!



















Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Cold Weather Tips For Peripheral Neuropathy

A few years ago, I lived with the hope that my chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN) would disappear over time. Since I'd had Taxol every week for six months, the CIPN side effect was not unexpected. The availability of cold socks/gloves/caps at that time was much less than it is now, and I only learned about those options after that treatment had ended. Still, those techniques are no guarantee CIPN won't set in and stick around.

Although I knew I was developing the condition and was careful to inform both my doctor and the nurses about how the tingling was developing, I am sure I downplayed the seriousness of the situation because the last thing I wanted was to end treatment before our previously agreed upon date.

So, now I live with CIPN and while I have had prescriptions for gabapentin issued, I have resisted this choice for personal reasons including the idea that it is more effective for painful neuropathy than the type I experience, which is numbness and tingling. It's hard living with CIPN that seems to be progressing overall, but that sometimes ebbs with factors I haven't been super successful at duplicating when I need them.

Cold weather, which can extend from November through March where I live, is especially brutal for those living with this side effect. Bottomline, commonsense steps can help maintain comfort during cold weather. I can't claim to have found the solution for CIPN for anyone else – or even myself – but I do know some good tips for cold-weather management:

Move. Although movement is not a cure for CIPN, it does help relieve stiff and numb hands and feet. I remember sitting in a cold truck with my brother-in-law, who had severe neuropathy, and watching him clench and unclench his hands. This movement can provide immediate help by warming hands (and toes, clench those as well) by getting circulation moving when it is not possible to take other steps. Full-body exercise also works to improve overall circulation, so include that as well if you are able.

Keep feet dry. One of the problems with CIPN is that it's hard to know what your fingers and feet are actually feeling. There have been times when I've kept on shoes after being outside only to find, after I finally notice that my feet are more uncomfortable than usual, that my socks are damp. I've learned to remove my shoes as soon as I come inside, even if my feet feel OK, and switch to a new pair of socks after checking to make sure my feet are not damp. It's a commonsense move that is easy to forget.

Gloves and socks. Even the warmest coverings aren't going to stop my CIPN from acting up in cold weather, but it is much worse if I decide to go without gloves, for instance, because that's what I could do before cancer. Just put on the warm gloves and socks (and keep them dry).

Wear a warm coat. If you have CIPN, you might have noticed that if you become cold by underdressing for the weather, the degree of pain or numbness in your peripheral areas becomes worse. That happens because circulation isn't being maintained and it can become more difficult to move your fingers (or toes). For CIPN in hands, it's particularly helpful to make sure even your forearms remain warm.

Walk safe. I've fallen enough times, both in cold weather and warm, to want to stay upright. Leave the heels or slippery flats at home or in your purse to switch into once inside. Instead, wear shoes or boots with traction that might help prevent you from sliding into a fall and keep hands out of pockets (wear gloves or mittens!), which not only gives you a chance to catch yourself if you start to fall, but can also help to prevent fingers from cramping or "freezing" into a bent position.

Use caution outdoors. While I used to love to sled for hours with my son, I know that cold can slow circulation to hands and feet, aggravate CIPN, and may cause additional nerve damage. I'm not going to give up the things that I enjoy, but I will do what I can to prevent further nerve damage. So, I try to keep an extra pair of socks and gloves with me when I go out to minimize the chance that I'll be in damp or cold clothing for too long and I take breaks indoors or in a warm car.

Pamper yourself. I've found that while it can sometimes hurt to have my feet touched, gently massaging lotion onto them (and my hands) does wonders. It increases circulation, gives me a chance to notice if I've hurt my feet anywhere, and also puts my hands to work. These moments of indulgence matter and are good for movement and warmth.

LINK

Thursday, January 17, 2019

TUSCANINI INTRODUCES NEW LINE UP OF GOURMET ITALIAN PRODUCTS

Hi, gang-  I was delighted to get a package full of products from TUSCANINI!  As you can imagine, being married to an Italian, this stuff is right up my alley.

And it's GREAT!  These will be staples in my kitchen.  My Dominic loved these, as did I!

From the Rolling Hills of Tuscany...to Your Table, Say “Ciao!” to the Taste of Italy With These Premium Favorites:

Gourmet Balsamic Vinegar and Vinegar Glaze
Premium Pastas
Authentic Italian Tomato Sauces and Tomato Paste
Cold-Pressed Sparkling Beverages and Mineral Water
Versatile Apple Cider Vinegar
Recipes

Bayonne, NJ, JANUARY 8, 2018 – From the rolling hills of Italy, Tuscanini Foods is rolling out a new lineup of gourmet food products that bring the taste of Italy to your table for a truly authentic Italian dining experience.

This superior brand of foods is imported from Italy, famously identified for its traditions and age-old recipes. From the mountainous Dolomite region to the idyllic Sardinia Island, products are sourced from artisans that specialize in offering only the best quality ingredients.

The host of products from Tuscanini - from naturally sparkling cold pressed beverages to bronze cut Italian pasta - allow consumers to cook-up original homemade Italian favorites and provide delicious gourmet options for year-round cooking.

Distributed by NJ-based Kayco (www.kayco.com), a leader in specialty food products, Tuscanini (www.tuscaninifoods.com) products meet the highest standards of quality, craftsmanship and gourmet cuisine.  All products are produced with natural ingredients, nothing artificial and are certified OU kosher.

The following authentic Italian imports are coming to grocery shelves in 2019:

Balsamic Vinegar  (MRP $7.99 / 8.45 oz.)

This Balsamic Vinegar offers of ultimate Italian experience with its complex flavor and beautiful glass bottle and cork closure.

Balsamic Vinegar Glaze (MRP $7.99 / 8.5 oz.)

Rich and complex, these condiments hail from Modena, Italy, one of only two places in the world where true balsamic vinegar is produced under PDO classification. Tuscanini’s gourmet balsamic products are meticulously prepared from locally grown grapes and aged in traditional wood casks. Balanced with 6% acidity, they are superior for serious home cooks and restaurants.

Italian Pastas (MRP $3.99 / 16 oz.)

Dried pasta has been the mainstay of Italian cuisine for centuries. These 100% Durum Semolina pastas are bronze cut to create a porous, home-style texture that showcases the sauce in every bite. The high-end collection includes a variety of shapes: Gigli (ruffle-edged cones), Pennoni (a somewhat more substantial version of Penne), Trottole (“spinning top”), tricolor Conchiglie (seashells), and tricolor Fusilli (corkscrews).



Pasta Sauces (MRP $4.99 / 24.3 oz. jars)


These four authentic toppings evoke warm, sun-kissed Italian summers. Every jar of Tuscanini pasta sauce features 40 fresh tomatoes from the Parma region, harvested at the peak of ripeness. Traditional Pizza Sauce, Naopoletana Pasta Sauce, Classic Marinara Sauce, and Zesty Marinara Sauce pair perfectly with Tuscanini’s home-style Italian Pastas.

Tomato Paste (MRP $1.99 / 7.05 oz.)



Ripe, luscious tomatoes grown under the Tuscan sun are triple-concentrated for an intense burst of fresh flavor. Convenient, re-sealable tube lets you use only what you need with no waste. All-natural and non-GMO project certified.

Organic Sparkling Beverages (MRP $6.99 / 4-pack of 9.3 oz. bottles)

Tuscanini introduces two elegant new sparkling soft drinks inspired by leisurely Italian afternoons at an outdoor café. Made with only the choicest fruits hand-picked at peak harvest, these crisp Italian sodas are cold-pressed for maximum natural flavor. Available in Lemon and Blood Orange. Enjoy these all-natural refreshers straight from the bottle or over ice. USDA Organic certified.

Apple Cider Vinegar (MRP $5.99 / 16.9 oz.)


From the picturesque mountain region of Dolomite comes an unfiltered Apple Cider Vinegar brewed with “the mother culture” – a beneficial mix of proteins, acids, and bacteria prized for their healthy properties. This ancient condiment has become extremely popular with consumers and chefs alike. Made with only organic Italian apples, it delivers a great, well-balanced acidity in glazes, dressings, marinades, and more.

TRY THESE RECIPES:

Recipes:

https://www.kosher.com/recipe/balsamic-roasted-potatoes-and-shallots-6348 

https://www.kosher.com/recipe/tomato-soup-with-cheddar-matzah-balls-recipe-3601 

https://www.kosher.com/recipe/peperonata-6398

https://www.kosher.com/recipe/grilled-vegetables-with-balsamic-vinegar-recipe-4588

https://www.kosher.com/recipe/balsamic-salmon-over-pomegranate-and-golden-kiwi-arugula-salad-6452