Friday, December 31, 2010

New Year's Day at Casuarina Sands`

We've got Amy's parents, sister (Catherine) and nephew (Camden) staying with us at the moment. The 8 of us took the short trip out to Casuarina Sands for a New Year's Day barbecue. Here's a pic of Amy and her sister together with the kids (eating enormous slices of watermelon)!

There's a couple of nice spots to go swimming and Ivor (Amy's Dad) and I together with the kids enjoyed a post-barbecue dip. It was a picture perfect day with a light breeze and temperatures just touching 30 degrees.
Audrey loves fairies
Eli loves balls!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Home at last!

I finally got discharged late on Wednesday. I was told around 11am that I would probably be allowed to go home but it wasn't until 5:45pm that I was finally walking out the door.

Thanks to everyone for all the messages of support. It really kept me positive. The nurses at Calvary Hospital were fantastic too and really looked after me, keeping my spirits up and offering a shoulder to cry on when I needed it. I hope I never have to be in there again though! ;)

Hurrah! So lovely to be home with the gang and back in my comfy bed.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

An update on Amy

Thanks for all of your words of support and kindness over the last few days.

Amy is still in hospital. She meets with the surgeon tomorrow (26th) to discuss a discharge date, possibly tomorrow or in the next few days. She's understandably still sore and feeling low.

As today was Christmas the nurse allowed Amy home for a few hours today (for good behaviour) I think they called it 'gate release!'. After visiting her this morning with Audrey and Eli, Amy came home with us after lunch.

As you can imagine it's difficult to recuperate at our place with Audrey and Eli leaping on you and Amy was exhausted when I dropped her back at the hospital at 6pm for her next injection. It was really nice for us all to be together at home. I'll keep you posted with any progress.

A Christmas card to everyone!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Amy is out of theatre

I've just spoken with a pretty groggy Amy who came out of theatre around 7pm (EDT) after going in around 3pm.

The surgery all seems to have gone well although they've told her that in addition to the mastectomy the surgeon had to remove some of her lymph nodes which will make her more susceptible to Lymphodema after she recovers from the operation.

I'm taking the kids to see her in the morning, when I'm sure we'll know a bit more.

Thanks everyone for your kind words of support (along with all the other things) that you've sent us.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Christmas comes early

It's a common complaint that Christmas seems to come around earlier every year. Ours arrived today, 19th December.

Amy goes into Calvary Hospital on the 21st for a mastectomy and because she's not going to be in the best of health when she comes out we decided to bring Christmas forward a week so we could spend the day as a family as happily as possible.

Our day began at 6.30am with the kids excitedly opening their stockings from Santa. It's great watching Eli as a 19 month old absolutely delighted at receiving a tub of Play Dough (at $1.74 a tub) and a colouring book. Life seems to get more complicated as you get older.

Audrey got a towel for swimming (with Tinkerbell on it) which works like an overhead cape. She chose to wear it for much of the day, alternating with her fairy wings which she'd received from my work Christmas party a couple of days earlier.

Lunch was the traditional Christmas fayre. I roasted a chicken (in our decidedly dodgy oven) and then dripped fat onto the element as I was taking it out resulting in a worryingly large fire at the bottom of the oven. Fortunately it went out pretty quickly, but not before Audrey had raced out of the kitchen shouting "Run away!" - she wasn't stopping for anyone!

Brussel Sprouts were met with a typical lack of enthusiasm, Audrey refusing point blank, Amy chasing a couple round her plate for 5 minutes and Eli literally throwing his off his plate. Despite trying to pass them off as 'fun size cabbages' I was left to eat 8 or 9 on my own - it was only a couple of hours later that the others suffered for their abstention and my over indulgence.

We went for a walk late in the day, luckily managing to dodge the rain clouds. We had another day of intermittent rain. People had forecast that the weather would be rainy up until Christmas, and in our case the prediction came true. At least it's not snow!

So that's Christmas over with for another year, or 6 days depending on your point of view...

Here's a few pics;

Our walk up to the postbox.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Carols on the Block

We've just returned from Carols on the Block. It was a local community event (which Australians do so well) and took the form of a brass band and a choir of singers who sang modern and traditional Christmas carols.

There was a free sausage sizzle and a probably 200-300 hundred people showed up and sat and picnic-ed on the grass. It was a traditional Aussie Christmas, with Carol singers and kids at the back playing footy! Here's a picture of my beautiful wife and son and also one of Audrey with her good friend Tristan who we bumped into there.

Our Christmas Tree

Amidst everything else going on we did manage to get a Christmas Tree erected last weekend. Christmas trees are at a premium here in Australia with most people wisely opting for fake ones (which have the obvious benefit of not drooping or shedding needles.

The last couple of years I've always persuaded Amy to go for a real tree (here it is pictured). It doesn't look much like this any more as Eli can reach all of the lower branches and has removed all of the baubles, it's also looking distinctly more droopy with every day that passes.

We also had an amusing incident last week when Audrey opened the advent calendar sent to her by Grandma and Grandpa and exclaimed 'A fairy!' when she saw an angel underneath the 8th December. Wonder how the shepherds would have reacted to the "Fairy Gabriel" appearing to them?

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Another update

Since the previous update, it has been confirmed that I do not have lymphoma but in fact have breast cancer. The cancer in my right hip is secondary breast cancer located in the bone. So, what a whirlwind few weeks we have had.

Once the doctors had diagnosed breast cancer (last Friday) my treatment plan did not take long to put into action. I had my first hormone treatment on Tuesday and some radiation therapy on my hip and upper back today.

I also visited the breast surgeon this morning and will be having my operation on 21 December. Not the best timing but then I don't think any time would be a good time and I'd rather just get on with it.

Trevor continues to be my pillar of strength and very supportive (even though he's had to sacrifice Ashes tickets for the Adelaide and Melbourne games!)