lizziec: (me - Lizzie-ben-wedding)
Yesterday was the sixth anniversary of my wedding to Ben. In honour of that momentous occasion, I give you a picspam of wedding pictures.

Wedding pics. Cut to save your friends page. There are a lot of pictures under here )

Ben's cousin got married yesterday, so we attended the wedding. It was at a posh hotel, so we spent a couple of nights there as an anniversary gift to ourselves. It was very pleasant, though it was really nice to come home. Sometimes I think that's the best reason to go away - so you can be grateful to come home.

The wedding yesterday - how I did my hair )

The wedding we attended yesterday was lovely. The hotel staff were amazing and very helpful, and it was nice to see Ben's family. My sister-in-law was particularly lovely. When I couldn't eat the pudding that was served at dinner cos it had almonds in it, I wasn't going to say anything but she did and got me ice cream instead :) She also made a song request towards the end of the reception - Annie's Song by John Denver, which was the song Ben and I had our first dance to at our our wedding so I got a dance with Ben after all. It was lovely, felt for me very much like time had stopped and I was floating on air. A beautiful end to a gorgeous day.

This entry was originally posted at http://lizziec.dreamwidth.org/429421.html. There are currently comment count unavailable comments on the original entry.
lizziec: (me - Lizzie-ben-wedding)
Yesterday was the sixth anniversary of my wedding to Ben. In honour of that momentous occasion, I give you a picspam of wedding pictures.

Wedding pics. Cut to save your friends page. There are a lot of pictures under here )

Ben's cousin got married yesterday, so we attended the wedding. It was at a posh hotel, so we spent a couple of nights there as an anniversary gift to ourselves. It was very pleasant, though it was really nice to come home. Sometimes I think that's the best reason to go away - so you can be grateful to come home.

The wedding yesterday - how I did my hair )

The wedding we attended yesterday was lovely. The hotel staff were amazing and very helpful, and it was nice to see Ben's family. My sister-in-law was particularly lovely. When I couldn't eat the pudding that was served at dinner cos it had almonds in it, I wasn't going to say anything but she did and got me ice cream instead :) She also made a song request towards the end of the reception - Annie's Song by John Denver, which was the song Ben and I had our first dance to at our our wedding so I got a dance with Ben after all. It was lovely, felt for me very much like time had stopped and I was floating on air. A beautiful end to a gorgeous day.

This entry was originally posted at http://lizziec.dreamwidth.org/429421.html. There are currently comment count unavailable comments on the original entry.
lizziec: (me - Lizzie-ben-wedding)
Yesterday was the sixth anniversary of my wedding to Ben. In honour of that momentous occasion, I give you a picspam of wedding pictures.

Wedding pics. Cut to save your friends page. There are a lot of pictures under here )

Ben's cousin got married yesterday, so we attended the wedding. It was at a posh hotel, so we spent a couple of nights there as an anniversary gift to ourselves. It was very pleasant, though it was really nice to come home. Sometimes I think that's the best reason to go away - so you can be grateful to come home.

The wedding yesterday - how I did my hair )

The wedding we attended yesterday was lovely. The hotel staff were amazing and very helpful, and it was nice to see Ben's family. My sister-in-law was particularly lovely. When I couldn't eat the pudding that was served at dinner cos it had almonds in it, I wasn't going to say anything but she did and got me ice cream instead :) She also made a song request towards the end of the reception - Annie's Song by John Denver, which was the song Ben and I had our first dance to at our our wedding so I got a dance with Ben after all. It was lovely, felt for me very much like time had stopped and I was floating on air. A beautiful end to a gorgeous day.
lizziec: (me - Lizzie-ben-wedding)
Ben and I have been quietly house-hunting since the start of this year. We've been bursting out of the seams of our little rented flat for years now and despite taking on a storage locker and a garage in the last couple of years our space issues were getting silly.

Anyway, we've found somewhere we want to buy and though it's not in the location I would have picked it's a beautiful house and our third offer on the place was accepted on Tuesday!

It's very early days so still rather scary in all the things that could go wrong with housebuying, but at the moment it looks as though we have a house! I felt initally really pleased and excited - now I'm rather nervous of it all and feeling a bit out of control. And despite all of the things I won't miss about our flat (how small it is, how the carpets are crappy and stuck down with rubbish glue so they're all peeling, and magnolia walls and mould) I will miss being here because we've lived here for 6 years and it was our first place together. But wow. Big grown up thing is happening right here.

We're buying a house! :D

This entry was originally posted at http://lizziec.dreamwidth.org/420695.html. There are currently comments on the original entry.
lizziec: (me - Lizzie-ben-wedding)
Ben and I have been quietly house-hunting since the start of this year. We've been bursting out of the seams of our little rented flat for years now and despite taking on a storage locker and a garage in the last couple of years our space issues were getting silly.

Anyway, we've found somewhere we want to buy and though it's not in the location I would have picked it's a beautiful house and our third offer on the place was accepted on Tuesday!

It's very early days so still rather scary in all the things that could go wrong with housebuying, but at the moment it looks as though we have a house! I felt initally really pleased and excited - now I'm rather nervous of it all and feeling a bit out of control. And despite all of the things I won't miss about our flat (how small it is, how the carpets are crappy and stuck down with rubbish glue so they're all peeling, and magnolia walls and mould) I will miss being here because we've lived here for 6 years and it was our first place together. But wow. Big grown up thing is happening right here.

We're buying a house! :D

This entry was originally posted at http://lizziec.dreamwidth.org/420695.html. There are currently comments on the original entry.
lizziec: (Lizzie-ben in snow)
Ben and I have been quietly house-hunting since the start of this year. We've been bursting out of the seams of our little rented flat for years now and despite taking on a storage locker and a garage in the last couple of years our space issues were getting silly.

Anyway, we've found somewhere we want to buy and though it's not in the location I would have picked it's a beautiful house and our third offer on the place was accepted on Tuesday!

It's very early days so still rather scary in all the things that could go wrong with housebuying, but at the moment it looks as though we have a house! I felt initally really pleased and excited - now I'm rather nervous of it all and feeling a bit out of control. And despite all of the things I won't miss about our flat (how small it is, how the carpets are crappy and stuck down with rubbish glue so they're all peeling, and magnolia walls and mould) I will miss being here because we've lived here for 6 years and it was our first place together. But wow. Big grown up thing is happening right here.

We're buying a house! :D
lizziec: (toys - Giraffe)
We went on holiday to Norfolk this year, to this beautiful cottage called "Remus" in Larling, through this brilliant company who let holiday cottages in five locales, despite being called "Best of Suffolk" ;)

I was pretty excited about going, but didn't realise how much I really needed to get away from everything after the year we've had so far. And I really did need to get away, and feel miles better for having done so.

Day One - Friday 3rd September - Travelling and settling in )

Day Two - Saturday 4th September - Relaxing in the cottage )

Day Three - Sunday 5th September - Bure Valley Railway and Great Yarmouth )

Day Four - Monday 6th September - Banham Zoo (featuring Giraffes) )

Day Five - Tuesday 7th September - The world's most disappointing Toy and Model Expo and England's only Whisky distillery )

Day Six - Wednesday 8th September - IWM Duxford )

Day Seven - Thursday 9th September - Norwich )

Day Eight - Friday 10th September - Home again (with a stop at Bluewater en-route) )

It was really good to be away, but it was quite nice to get home again.

The fantastic news, and a good way to round off our holiday, is this was our last holiday in which I had to do all the driving, because on Monday, Ben passed his driving test first time \o/ (though this does mean I now have to share the car ;))

This entry was originally posted at http://lizziec.dreamwidth.org/414937.html. There are currently comment count unavailable comments on the original entry.
lizziec: (toys - Giraffe)
We went on holiday to Norfolk this year, to this beautiful cottage called "Remus" in Larling, through this brilliant company who let holiday cottages in five locales, despite being called "Best of Suffolk" ;)

I was pretty excited about going, but didn't realise how much I really needed to get away from everything after the year we've had so far. And I really did need to get away, and feel miles better for having done so.

Day One - Friday 3rd September - Travelling and settling in )

Day Two - Saturday 4th September - Relaxing in the cottage )

Day Three - Sunday 5th September - Bure Valley Railway and Great Yarmouth )

Day Four - Monday 6th September - Banham Zoo (featuring Giraffes) )

Day Five - Tuesday 7th September - The world's most disappointing Toy and Model Expo and England's only Whisky distillery )

Day Six - Wednesday 8th September - IWM Duxford )

Day Seven - Thursday 9th September - Norwich )

Day Eight - Friday 10th September - Home again (with a stop at Bluewater en-route) )

It was really good to be away, but it was quite nice to get home again.

The fantastic news, and a good way to round off our holiday, is this was our last holiday in which I had to do all the driving, because on Monday, Ben passed his driving test first time \o/ (though this does mean I now have to share the car ;))

This entry was originally posted at http://lizziec.dreamwidth.org/414937.html. There are currently comment count unavailable comments on the original entry.
lizziec: (Granny's garden bee)
We went on holiday to Norfolk this year, to this beautiful cottage called "Remus" in Larling, through this brilliant company who let holiday cottages in five locales, despite being called "Best of Suffolk" ;)

I was pretty excited about going, but didn't realise how much I really needed to get away from everything after the year we've had so far. And I really did need to get away, and feel miles better for having done so.

Day One - Friday 3rd September - Travelling and settling in )

Day Two - Saturday 4th September - Relaxing in the cottage )

Day Three - Sunday 5th September - Bure Valley Railway and Great Yarmouth )

Day Four - Monday 6th September - Banham Zoo (featuring Giraffes) )

Day Five - Tuesday 7th September - The world's most disappointing Toy and Model Expo and England's only Whisky distillery )

Day Six - Wednesday 8th September - IWM Duxford )

Day Seven - Thursday 9th September - Norwich )

Day Eight - Friday 10th September - Home again (with a stop at Bluewater en-route) )

It was really good to be away, but it was quite nice to get home again.

The fantastic news, and a good way to round off our holiday, is this was our last holiday in which I had to do all the driving, because on Monday, Ben passed his driving test first time \o/ (though this does mean I now have to share the car ;))
lizziec: (Default)
Horrible awful dream in which ben died in a fire after running in to a building to rescue children. Woke up full of adrenaline, shaking and breathing very fast. It was horrible - really, really horrible.
lizziec: (Default)
Horrible awful dream in which ben died in a fire after running in to a building to rescue children. Woke up full of adrenaline, shaking and breathing very fast. It was horrible - really, really horrible.
lizziec: (Default)
Horrible awful dream in which ben died in a fire after running in to a building to rescue children. Woke up full of adrenaline, shaking and breathing very fast. It was horrible - really, really horrible.
lizziec: (Stargate SG1 Daniel Jackson)
As I posted earlier, mum died this morning at just gone 10am. It wasn't a huge shock. I mentioned in previous entries that she had got dramatically worse over the weekend, and yesterday afternoon during visiting hours Phil and I tracked down Fiona, the Macmillan nurse to see what was actually going on, as we hadn't seen an actual doctor who would tell us anything since the beginning of the previous week.

Fiona said she was shocked at how much worse mum was yesterday than she had been on Friday, and confirmed what I already felt - that we were looking at an extremely short period of time, probably just a few days. Fiona felt that mum would probably gradually slow down her breathing and fall into a coma and gradually stop breathing. She said we could stay at the hospital if we wanted, but that she felt we needed proper rest and that it would happen regardless of where we were - even if we just went to get a cup of tea, and so Phil and I decided that we would go home at the end of visiting hours. If were looking at a situation that could go on for days then we wanted to be fresh enough to deal with it. And in the condition that mum was in on Monday evening when we left, we knew it would be a strain. Her breathing was more laboured again than it was on Sunday, and her tongue had stopped working. She tried to say lots of things to me and Phil when we arrived, the only period she was really awake for, but unfortunately we couldn't understand any of it apart from our names. And that it was lovely when we wiped a cold flannel across her very hot face.

Fiona felt that the deterioration in mum's condition was caused by the fact that the tumour had grown so large that it was 1) causing swelling in her throat, making breathing difficult, and 2) pressing on the nerves and muscles that controlled mum's tongue, which is why it was we were struggling to understand anything she said.

As I said, when we left on Monday night it was clear we were looking at days at the most. I was worried we were looking at hours, but deciding there was nothing more we could do at the hospital, we came home.

We'd not been home long when the nurse looking after mum last night (Tidings) called and said that in the short time we'd been gone, mum was worse and that we should thing about coming in. We had dinner, and headed in, supported by my auntie Pat and uncle Allan. She was worse, and when we got there, Tidings told us that though mum was calmer, she had spent a good deal of time calling my name. We all sat around her bed and talked to her, and around her, and recalled memories of our childhood and the lovely times that we had had. All the while her breathing got worse and worse. She was also in a good deal of pain, the first time she's really been in pain since she was admitted to hospital on 29th April. They gave her a top up booster of morphine, besides what was in her syringe driver, but it didn't really seem to help much with her pain. Meanwhile she was sweating profusely, and we tried to keep her cool with wet flannels. After a while she rested more, Pat and Allan went home, Phil first dozed on the floor (to the horror of a nursing assistant), and then in the day room, where said horrified nursing assistant insisted that he move to, and I dozed fitfully in the chair next to her bed, waking every 20 mins or so to reassure her that she was ok, we were ok and that it was ok for her to let go if she wanted to, because we would be looked after. I tried to keep touching her arm and hand, though she kept withdrawing them to posture against her chest, which I think was a pain response.

We left her at about 7am. She seemed quieter, and though her breathing was a little worse (it had got steadily worse through the night), she was cooler and seemed to be in much less pain. We decided to go home and get some sleep, and come back at around 1pm.

So we left her, after telling her we loved her and we'd be back later. Came home, ate a little and fell into bed. Was woken at about 10:10 by a call from Fiona telling us that mum had died just a short time before. They had washed her and put her in a comfortable position and she had looked much easier. Even her breathing was a little better. A nurse was still with her, and Fiona had just gone away for a little while, and in that five minutes she'd simply stopped breathing. Fiona said that it was a very peaceful end.

She asked if we wanted to see her, and said we could hold her hand if we wanted to. We wandered down to the end of the ward, and she opened the door. And there mum was. And it was awful. I've never had such spontaneous tears as I had then. Immediately the door opened and I saw mum they started. She looked peaceful, yes, but she didn't look like my mummy. And seeing a body without seeing breathing is strange and odd and not nice. I couldn't touch her. I don't think I can bring myself to see her again after the funeral home lay her out. I'm almost regretting seeing her like that because I can't get the picture out of my head. But at the same time, if I hadn't seen her, the last image would have been of her in dreadful pain and discomfort. That image is still with me, in fact. I'm crying as I write this. I don't know which I would rather have. But I have them both, and I really hope that soon I can stop fixating on those awful thoughts of her and see her as she was most of the time. Fuck Cancer. It wasn't supposed to be like this. She was retiring in a year and going to have a huge party. And now she never will. I checked my irc logs. You know, it was less than four months, barely over three, from start to finish? First symptoms of tingling in February. It's barely May now and she's dead. Fuck cancer. Fuck it right in the ear.

Most of the rest of todoay has been a bit of a blur. Everyone's being awesome. So awesome that I don't know how I'll thank them, ever. We've called people, organised various things, and know which funeral home we'll be going with. I've picked an outfit for her. We've even sorted through a few of her physical posessions (though only her shoes, and toiletries). Tomorrow we're going to sort out the paperwork at the hospital, and then go and register the death with Wandsworth registry office, which is the district that St Georges falls in. After that we're heading to the Funeral Home, a local company called WA Truelove and Son, to start sorting out the funeral.

Bleh. Today was exhausting and hard in its own way. But I think last night, when she was in pain and crying and struggling for every breath that was hardest and worst. Possibly the hardest and worst night of my entire adult life.

Finally, ben signed mum off IRC tonight. It makes sense but feels awful.

20:47:49 -!- typo [typo@dm-11449.pok.me.uk] has quit [Exit: fuck cancer]


Sorry for the brain dump. Needed to get it out before I could sleep, and before I forgot it all.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (Stargate SG1 Daniel Jackson)
As I posted earlier, mum died this morning at just gone 10am. It wasn't a huge shock. I mentioned in previous entries that she had got dramatically worse over the weekend, and yesterday afternoon during visiting hours Phil and I tracked down Fiona, the Macmillan nurse to see what was actually going on, as we hadn't seen an actual doctor who would tell us anything since the beginning of the previous week.

Fiona said she was shocked at how much worse mum was yesterday than she had been on Friday, and confirmed what I already felt - that we were looking at an extremely short period of time, probably just a few days. Fiona felt that mum would probably gradually slow down her breathing and fall into a coma and gradually stop breathing. She said we could stay at the hospital if we wanted, but that she felt we needed proper rest and that it would happen regardless of where we were - even if we just went to get a cup of tea, and so Phil and I decided that we would go home at the end of visiting hours. If were looking at a situation that could go on for days then we wanted to be fresh enough to deal with it. And in the condition that mum was in on Monday evening when we left, we knew it would be a strain. Her breathing was more laboured again than it was on Sunday, and her tongue had stopped working. She tried to say lots of things to me and Phil when we arrived, the only period she was really awake for, but unfortunately we couldn't understand any of it apart from our names. And that it was lovely when we wiped a cold flannel across her very hot face.

Fiona felt that the deterioration in mum's condition was caused by the fact that the tumour had grown so large that it was 1) causing swelling in her throat, making breathing difficult, and 2) pressing on the nerves and muscles that controlled mum's tongue, which is why it was we were struggling to understand anything she said.

As I said, when we left on Monday night it was clear we were looking at days at the most. I was worried we were looking at hours, but deciding there was nothing more we could do at the hospital, we came home.

We'd not been home long when the nurse looking after mum last night (Tidings) called and said that in the short time we'd been gone, mum was worse and that we should thing about coming in. We had dinner, and headed in, supported by my auntie Pat and uncle Allan. She was worse, and when we got there, Tidings told us that though mum was calmer, she had spent a good deal of time calling my name. We all sat around her bed and talked to her, and around her, and recalled memories of our childhood and the lovely times that we had had. All the while her breathing got worse and worse. She was also in a good deal of pain, the first time she's really been in pain since she was admitted to hospital on 29th April. They gave her a top up booster of morphine, besides what was in her syringe driver, but it didn't really seem to help much with her pain. Meanwhile she was sweating profusely, and we tried to keep her cool with wet flannels. After a while she rested more, Pat and Allan went home, Phil first dozed on the floor (to the horror of a nursing assistant), and then in the day room, where said horrified nursing assistant insisted that he move to, and I dozed fitfully in the chair next to her bed, waking every 20 mins or so to reassure her that she was ok, we were ok and that it was ok for her to let go if she wanted to, because we would be looked after. I tried to keep touching her arm and hand, though she kept withdrawing them to posture against her chest, which I think was a pain response.

We left her at about 7am. She seemed quieter, and though her breathing was a little worse (it had got steadily worse through the night), she was cooler and seemed to be in much less pain. We decided to go home and get some sleep, and come back at around 1pm.

So we left her, after telling her we loved her and we'd be back later. Came home, ate a little and fell into bed. Was woken at about 10:10 by a call from Fiona telling us that mum had died just a short time before. They had washed her and put her in a comfortable position and she had looked much easier. Even her breathing was a little better. A nurse was still with her, and Fiona had just gone away for a little while, and in that five minutes she'd simply stopped breathing. Fiona said that it was a very peaceful end.

She asked if we wanted to see her, and said we could hold her hand if we wanted to. We wandered down to the end of the ward, and she opened the door. And there mum was. And it was awful. I've never had such spontaneous tears as I had then. Immediately the door opened and I saw mum they started. She looked peaceful, yes, but she didn't look like my mummy. And seeing a body without seeing breathing is strange and odd and not nice. I couldn't touch her. I don't think I can bring myself to see her again after the funeral home lay her out. I'm almost regretting seeing her like that because I can't get the picture out of my head. But at the same time, if I hadn't seen her, the last image would have been of her in dreadful pain and discomfort. That image is still with me, in fact. I'm crying as I write this. I don't know which I would rather have. But I have them both, and I really hope that soon I can stop fixating on those awful thoughts of her and see her as she was most of the time. Fuck Cancer. It wasn't supposed to be like this. She was retiring in a year and going to have a huge party. And now she never will. I checked my irc logs. You know, it was less than four months, barely over three, from start to finish? First symptoms of tingling in February. It's barely May now and she's dead. Fuck cancer. Fuck it right in the ear.

Most of the rest of todoay has been a bit of a blur. Everyone's being awesome. So awesome that I don't know how I'll thank them, ever. We've called people, organised various things, and know which funeral home we'll be going with. I've picked an outfit for her. We've even sorted through a few of her physical posessions (though only her shoes, and toiletries). Tomorrow we're going to sort out the paperwork at the hospital, and then go and register the death with Wandsworth registry office, which is the district that St Georges falls in. After that we're heading to the Funeral Home, a local company called WA Truelove and Son, to start sorting out the funeral.

Bleh. Today was exhausting and hard in its own way. But I think last night, when she was in pain and crying and struggling for every breath that was hardest and worst. Possibly the hardest and worst night of my entire adult life.

Finally, ben signed mum off IRC tonight. It makes sense but feels awful.

20:47:49 -!- typo [typo@dm-11449.pok.me.uk] has quit [Exit: fuck cancer]


Sorry for the brain dump. Needed to get it out before I could sleep, and before I forgot it all.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (Stargate SG1 Daniel Jackson)
As I posted earlier, mum died this morning at just gone 10am. It wasn't a huge shock. I mentioned in previous entries that she had got dramatically worse over the weekend, and yesterday afternoon during visiting hours Phil and I tracked down Fiona, the Macmillan nurse to see what was actually going on, as we hadn't seen an actual doctor who would tell us anything since the beginning of the previous week.

Fiona said she was shocked at how much worse mum was yesterday than she had been on Friday, and confirmed what I already felt - that we were looking at an extremely short period of time, probably just a few days. Fiona felt that mum would probably gradually slow down her breathing and fall into a coma and gradually stop breathing. She said we could stay at the hospital if we wanted, but that she felt we needed proper rest and that it would happen regardless of where we were - even if we just went to get a cup of tea, and so Phil and I decided that we would go home at the end of visiting hours. If were looking at a situation that could go on for days then we wanted to be fresh enough to deal with it. And in the condition that mum was in on Monday evening when we left, we knew it would be a strain. Her breathing was more laboured again than it was on Sunday, and her tongue had stopped working. She tried to say lots of things to me and Phil when we arrived, the only period she was really awake for, but unfortunately we couldn't understand any of it apart from our names. And that it was lovely when we wiped a cold flannel across her very hot face.

Fiona felt that the deterioration in mum's condition was caused by the fact that the tumour had grown so large that it was 1) causing swelling in her throat, making breathing difficult, and 2) pressing on the nerves and muscles that controlled mum's tongue, which is why it was we were struggling to understand anything she said.

As I said, when we left on Monday night it was clear we were looking at days at the most. I was worried we were looking at hours, but deciding there was nothing more we could do at the hospital, we came home.

We'd not been home long when the nurse looking after mum last night (Tidings) called and said that in the short time we'd been gone, mum was worse and that we should thing about coming in. We had dinner, and headed in, supported by my auntie Pat and uncle Allan. She was worse, and when we got there, Tidings told us that though mum was calmer, she had spent a good deal of time calling my name. We all sat around her bed and talked to her, and around her, and recalled memories of our childhood and the lovely times that we had had. All the while her breathing got worse and worse. She was also in a good deal of pain, the first time she's really been in pain since she was admitted to hospital on 29th April. They gave her a top up booster of morphine, besides what was in her syringe driver, but it didn't really seem to help much with her pain. Meanwhile she was sweating profusely, and we tried to keep her cool with wet flannels. After a while she rested more, Pat and Allan went home, Phil first dozed on the floor (to the horror of a nursing assistant), and then in the day room, where said horrified nursing assistant insisted that he move to, and I dozed fitfully in the chair next to her bed, waking every 20 mins or so to reassure her that she was ok, we were ok and that it was ok for her to let go if she wanted to, because we would be looked after. I tried to keep touching her arm and hand, though she kept withdrawing them to posture against her chest, which I think was a pain response.

We left her at about 7am. She seemed quieter, and though her breathing was a little worse (it had got steadily worse through the night), she was cooler and seemed to be in much less pain. We decided to go home and get some sleep, and come back at around 1pm.

So we left her, after telling her we loved her and we'd be back later. Came home, ate a little and fell into bed. Was woken at about 10:10 by a call from Fiona telling us that mum had died just a short time before. They had washed her and put her in a comfortable position and she had looked much easier. Even her breathing was a little better. A nurse was still with her, and Fiona had just gone away for a little while, and in that five minutes she'd simply stopped breathing. Fiona said that it was a very peaceful end.

She asked if we wanted to see her, and said we could hold her hand if we wanted to. We wandered down to the end of the ward, and she opened the door. And there mum was. And it was awful. I've never had such spontaneous tears as I had then. Immediately the door opened and I saw mum they started. She looked peaceful, yes, but she didn't look like my mummy. And seeing a body without seeing breathing is strange and odd and not nice. I couldn't touch her. I don't think I can bring myself to see her again after the funeral home lay her out. I'm almost regretting seeing her like that because I can't get the picture out of my head. But at the same time, if I hadn't seen her, the last image would have been of her in dreadful pain and discomfort. That image is still with me, in fact. I'm crying as I write this. I don't know which I would rather have. But I have them both, and I really hope that soon I can stop fixating on those awful thoughts of her and see her as she was most of the time. Fuck Cancer. It wasn't supposed to be like this. She was retiring in a year and going to have a huge party. And now she never will. I checked my irc logs. You know, it was less than four months, barely over three, from start to finish? First symptoms of tingling in February. It's barely May now and she's dead. Fuck cancer. Fuck it right in the ear.

Most of the rest of todoay has been a bit of a blur. Everyone's being awesome. So awesome that I don't know how I'll thank them, ever. We've called people, organised various things, and know which funeral home we'll be going with. I've picked an outfit for her. We've even sorted through a few of her physical posessions (though only her shoes, and toiletries). Tomorrow we're going to sort out the paperwork at the hospital, and then go and register the death with Wandsworth registry office, which is the district that St Georges falls in. After that we're heading to the Funeral Home, a local company called WA Truelove and Son, to start sorting out the funeral.

Bleh. Today was exhausting and hard in its own way. But I think last night, when she was in pain and crying and struggling for every breath that was hardest and worst. Possibly the hardest and worst night of my entire adult life.

Finally, ben signed mum off IRC tonight. It makes sense but feels awful.

20:47:49 -!- typo [typo@dm-11449.pok.me.uk] has quit [Exit: fuck cancer]


Sorry for the brain dump. Needed to get it out before I could sleep, and before I forgot it all.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer locked
lizziec: (animals - badgers)
Had a lovely surprise the other night (Thursday) - foo and rah brought Ben up to me, which was amazing. They also brought benji to see me and we all ended up going for dinner after visiting hours, which helped recharge my spoons a little. Ben's heading back to Canterbury, and work today, but it's been amazing to have him around in the meantime. I don't know how I'll ever thank everyone for how amazing they're being.

Mum's still hanging on, but definitely getting a little bit worse every day. The doctors have put a nasogastric tube in to feed mum that way as she can't swallow any more. Any food she tries to eat gets spat back out again, and liquids just dribble out when she next opens her mouth. It's pretty grim to be honest. The downside to the feeding tube is that mum's finding it difficult to breathe with it in. The tumour is blocking off her left nostril, so she can't breathe through it and she can't have the tube up there, so they had to put it up her right nostril, which blocks that off as far as breathing goes. She's now breathing through her mouth only, which is somewhat complicated by the fact that she's now not producing enough saliva making her mouth incredibly dry. She's been prescribed some artifical saliva which has solved the problem somewhat, but it's another indicator of how much worse she's getting.

On the upside, she's off the insulin sliding scale now, and back on metformin, though a liquid version that's put in via her NG tube as she can't swallow. She's still on an IV for fluids though, due to the fact any drink she has comes straight out.

What's most distressing is how confused she was last night. I was hoping it was just because she'd been pulled around a lot yesterday - the NG tube going in, down to XRay to check it was sited correctly, (incidentally, I went there with her and was allowed to stay while they did the XRay and, despite everything, it was pretty cool), back to her room and then getting shuffled around in bed, having the feed connecting and having some trouble breathing, or at least thinking she did.

According to the nurse though, mum was confused again this morning. Last night she kept trying to get up to go to the toilet for a wee even though we kept reassuring her that she had a catheter in. She also kept tugging on the ng tube and towards the end was getting even more confused. She was worrying about the electricity board (why?), saying "he has two assistants" (no idea who has two assistants), and telling me how scared she was.

Being me, and incredibly pessimistic I was expecting the call last night because of that and slept pretty badly.

Mum is still here though, but according to the nurse still trying to get out of bed to go to the toilet. I'm hoping today's visit isn't like yesterdays because I'm not sure I could stand it. It was really really bad. I could handle her dying far better if it didn't feel like she was losing her marbles too. And I don't think it's just the drugs (the nurses pretty much said that if it was the drugs the confusion would have come up before, as she's been on the same combo of drugs for over a week now). Honestly I don't think she's got much longer. I may be being really pessimistic. I'm sure I am. But things just feel really bleak right now.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (animals - badgers)
Had a lovely surprise the other night (Thursday) - foo and rah brought Ben up to me, which was amazing. They also brought benji to see me and we all ended up going for dinner after visiting hours, which helped recharge my spoons a little. Ben's heading back to Canterbury, and work today, but it's been amazing to have him around in the meantime. I don't know how I'll ever thank everyone for how amazing they're being.

Mum's still hanging on, but definitely getting a little bit worse every day. The doctors have put a nasogastric tube in to feed mum that way as she can't swallow any more. Any food she tries to eat gets spat back out again, and liquids just dribble out when she next opens her mouth. It's pretty grim to be honest. The downside to the feeding tube is that mum's finding it difficult to breathe with it in. The tumour is blocking off her left nostril, so she can't breathe through it and she can't have the tube up there, so they had to put it up her right nostril, which blocks that off as far as breathing goes. She's now breathing through her mouth only, which is somewhat complicated by the fact that she's now not producing enough saliva making her mouth incredibly dry. She's been prescribed some artifical saliva which has solved the problem somewhat, but it's another indicator of how much worse she's getting.

On the upside, she's off the insulin sliding scale now, and back on metformin, though a liquid version that's put in via her NG tube as she can't swallow. She's still on an IV for fluids though, due to the fact any drink she has comes straight out.

What's most distressing is how confused she was last night. I was hoping it was just because she'd been pulled around a lot yesterday - the NG tube going in, down to XRay to check it was sited correctly, (incidentally, I went there with her and was allowed to stay while they did the XRay and, despite everything, it was pretty cool), back to her room and then getting shuffled around in bed, having the feed connecting and having some trouble breathing, or at least thinking she did.

According to the nurse though, mum was confused again this morning. Last night she kept trying to get up to go to the toilet for a wee even though we kept reassuring her that she had a catheter in. She also kept tugging on the ng tube and towards the end was getting even more confused. She was worrying about the electricity board (why?), saying "he has two assistants" (no idea who has two assistants), and telling me how scared she was.

Being me, and incredibly pessimistic I was expecting the call last night because of that and slept pretty badly.

Mum is still here though, but according to the nurse still trying to get out of bed to go to the toilet. I'm hoping today's visit isn't like yesterdays because I'm not sure I could stand it. It was really really bad. I could handle her dying far better if it didn't feel like she was losing her marbles too. And I don't think it's just the drugs (the nurses pretty much said that if it was the drugs the confusion would have come up before, as she's been on the same combo of drugs for over a week now). Honestly I don't think she's got much longer. I may be being really pessimistic. I'm sure I am. But things just feel really bleak right now.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (animals - badgers)
Had a lovely surprise the other night (Thursday) - foo and rah brought Ben up to me, which was amazing. They also brought benji to see me and we all ended up going for dinner after visiting hours, which helped recharge my spoons a little. Ben's heading back to Canterbury, and work today, but it's been amazing to have him around in the meantime. I don't know how I'll ever thank everyone for how amazing they're being.

Mum's still hanging on, but definitely getting a little bit worse every day. The doctors have put a nasogastric tube in to feed mum that way as she can't swallow any more. Any food she tries to eat gets spat back out again, and liquids just dribble out when she next opens her mouth. It's pretty grim to be honest. The downside to the feeding tube is that mum's finding it difficult to breathe with it in. The tumour is blocking off her left nostril, so she can't breathe through it and she can't have the tube up there, so they had to put it up her right nostril, which blocks that off as far as breathing goes. She's now breathing through her mouth only, which is somewhat complicated by the fact that she's now not producing enough saliva making her mouth incredibly dry. She's been prescribed some artifical saliva which has solved the problem somewhat, but it's another indicator of how much worse she's getting.

On the upside, she's off the insulin sliding scale now, and back on metformin, though a liquid version that's put in via her NG tube as she can't swallow. She's still on an IV for fluids though, due to the fact any drink she has comes straight out.

What's most distressing is how confused she was last night. I was hoping it was just because she'd been pulled around a lot yesterday - the NG tube going in, down to XRay to check it was sited correctly, (incidentally, I went there with her and was allowed to stay while they did the XRay and, despite everything, it was pretty cool), back to her room and then getting shuffled around in bed, having the feed connecting and having some trouble breathing, or at least thinking she did.

According to the nurse though, mum was confused again this morning. Last night she kept trying to get up to go to the toilet for a wee even though we kept reassuring her that she had a catheter in. She also kept tugging on the ng tube and towards the end was getting even more confused. She was worrying about the electricity board (why?), saying "he has two assistants" (no idea who has two assistants), and telling me how scared she was.

Being me, and incredibly pessimistic I was expecting the call last night because of that and slept pretty badly.

Mum is still here though, but according to the nurse still trying to get out of bed to go to the toilet. I'm hoping today's visit isn't like yesterdays because I'm not sure I could stand it. It was really really bad. I could handle her dying far better if it didn't feel like she was losing her marbles too. And I don't think it's just the drugs (the nurses pretty much said that if it was the drugs the confusion would have come up before, as she's been on the same combo of drugs for over a week now). Honestly I don't think she's got much longer. I may be being really pessimistic. I'm sure I am. But things just feel really bleak right now.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (animals - giraffe hug)
Most of you know mum has been diagnosed with a large cancerous tumour in her nasal cavity, stretching back a long way, wrapping itself around mum's carotid artery and causing a number of highly unpleasant symptoms, all of which led mum to be admitted to hospital yesterday, somewhat unexpectedly.

When we went to visit mum it was clear she was much worse than she was yesterday - hooked up to a heart monitor, nasal oxygen and several different lines and things going in to her - also looking weaker than yesterday and much sleepier.

Long story short, when the doctor saw me and Phil she said there was a good chance that mum won't live through the weekend, and in the end, after a good deal of discussion, we agreed to a DNR (Do Not Resuscitate) order.

While we discussed all of that, my bag was stolen from next to mum's bed, where I'd stupidly left it when the dr came to talk to us, which meant I spent an hour or so that I could have spent with mum searching for my bag, reporting the theft and cancelling my cards. That was an hour I couldn't spend with my critically ill mum, and if she dies tonight I really don't know how I could ever forgive the person who took it.

We've spoken to mum. She knows about and agrees with our decision. She wasn't upset or surprised, at least, not that we could see. We said all we wanted and needed to to her, and she said what she wanted and needed to, to us. From that point of view we are incredibly lucky, but it was one of the hardest things I've done in my life. She said she didn't want us to stay, and so we came home, but I can't sleep right now.
lizziec: (animals - giraffe hug)
Most of you know mum has been diagnosed with a large cancerous tumour in her nasal cavity, stretching back a long way, wrapping itself around mum's carotid artery and causing a number of highly unpleasant symptoms, all of which led mum to be admitted to hospital yesterday, somewhat unexpectedly.

When we went to visit mum it was clear she was much worse than she was yesterday - hooked up to a heart monitor, nasal oxygen and several different lines and things going in to her - also looking weaker than yesterday and much sleepier.

Long story short, when the doctor saw me and Phil she said there was a good chance that mum won't live through the weekend, and in the end, after a good deal of discussion, we agreed to a DNR (Do Not Resuscitate) order.

While we discussed all of that, my bag was stolen from next to mum's bed, where I'd stupidly left it when the dr came to talk to us, which meant I spent an hour or so that I could have spent with mum searching for my bag, reporting the theft and cancelling my cards. That was an hour I couldn't spend with my critically ill mum, and if she dies tonight I really don't know how I could ever forgive the person who took it.

We've spoken to mum. She knows about and agrees with our decision. She wasn't upset or surprised, at least, not that we could see. We said all we wanted and needed to to her, and she said what she wanted and needed to, to us. From that point of view we are incredibly lucky, but it was one of the hardest things I've done in my life. She said she didn't want us to stay, and so we came home, but I can't sleep right now.
lizziec: (animals - giraffe hug)
Most of you know mum has been diagnosed with a large cancerous tumour in her nasal cavity, stretching back a long way, wrapping itself around mum's carotid artery and causing a number of highly unpleasant symptoms, all of which led mum to be admitted to hospital yesterday, somewhat unexpectedly.

When we went to visit mum it was clear she was much worse than she was yesterday - hooked up to a heart monitor, nasal oxygen and several different lines and things going in to her - also looking weaker than yesterday and much sleepier.

Long story short, when the doctor saw me and Phil she said there was a good chance that mum won't live through the weekend, and in the end, after a good deal of discussion, we agreed to a DNR (Do Not Resuscitate) order.

While we discussed all of that, my bag was stolen from next to mum's bed, where I'd stupidly left it when the dr came to talk to us, which meant I spent an hour or so that I could have spent with mum searching for my bag, reporting the theft and cancelling my cards. That was an hour I couldn't spend with my critically ill mum, and if she dies tonight I really don't know how I could ever forgive the person who took it.

We've spoken to mum. She knows about and agrees with our decision. She wasn't upset or surprised, at least, not that we could see. We said all we wanted and needed to to her, and she said what she wanted and needed to, to us. From that point of view we are incredibly lucky, but it was one of the hardest things I've done in my life. She said she didn't want us to stay, and so we came home, but I can't sleep right now.
lizziec: (me - mummy and little lizzie)
Ben and I spent some time today sorting out some flowers and a balloon for mum's cubicle at the hospital, to make it a little more bright, having first checked that the ward allows flowers. We ended up getting a beautiful box of flowers from Mad Lillies in Banstead, which is where we got our wedding flowers from. That done, and with Phil back from work, we all headed up to Tooting to visit mum, getting to the hospital at about 5:15pm.

It was immediately clear that mum was worse than yesterday. They had her hooked up to a heart monitor, nasal oxygen on her and several different lines and things going in to her. She looked much weaker than yesterday, much sleepier, and she was having more nasty puss-y discharge from her nose than yesterday. Ben said hi and then went down to the cafe for a coffee - St Georges helpfully has an M&S food hall and cafe, which is a real bonus and all round fabulous idea - and Phil and I dumped our bags at the end of the bed, and then went through mum's post with her and read to her from BBC History magazine, which was all I had on me.

After a bit, one of the doctors came over and wanted to speak with me and Phil, so we dropped everything and went with her to a private room. A nurse got me a hot drink and really I should have known. That is never ever a good sign.

What the doctor had to say was incredibly hard for Phil and I to hear. What she wanted to do was tell us where we were up to today, and discuss with us a Do Not Resuscitate order.

She explained to us that while mum's blood sugar was much better (down to 11), she was much much worse than she had been 24 hours earlier. Mum's heart is getting very weak and mum herself is very tired. And she didn't mean that in a "she'll sleep and wake up refreshed" way, but in a "probably wanting to die" sort of way. And mum herself said later that she was very tired. Mum's resting heart rate is between 130 and 170bpm and the doctor thought it quite likely that at some point over the weekend it would stop. She also said that mum was in a lot of pain, and had been put on a morphine infusion earlier in the day to deal with the pain (previously she was on 30mg Codeine).

The hardest bit to hear was that she didn't think that mum's quality of life would get any better, even if the tumour does shrink a little bit (and the likelihood is that even if they can pull her through this, she will probably not be fit enough for radiotherapy), and she will continue to be in a lot of pain. She said that the consultants - Mr Mady, Mr Williamson and another (Mr Lee?) had met, and felt that the best and kindest thing would be not to resuscitate mum if her heart did stop. Phil and I were left to talk, and we called mum's brother and my aunt (dad's sister) and we all agreed that a DNR was the kindest thing that we could do. We (me and Phil) felt, and still feel, that to bring her back for more pain and suffering and poor quality of life is really just selfishness on our part. So we told the staff that we didn't want them to try and bring her back if her heart or breathing stop.

About 45 mins after the doctor had taken Phil and I aside, and when I finally could think about anything again, I found that my bag, that I'd stupidly dropped at the end of mum's bed earlier had gone missing. Phil's was still there. We searched the ward for it, and couldn't find it. The nursing staff were horrified and reported it to security, and I spent the next hour searching for my bag, reporting the theft and cancelling my cards. In the morning I need to call the DVLA.

There was nothing especially of value in there - just my notebooks (which I'm sad, especially as there were some untyped up stories) to lose) and my backpack (which I'm very sad to lose, especially given it had lots of keyrings I'd collected and things on it which made it an individual thing), and my purse, which had next to no actual money in it, just awkward things like cards and my driving licence in it. But the hour I spent having to report the loss and cancel the cards was an hour I couldn't spend with my critically ill mum, and if she dies tonight I really don't know how I could ever forgive the person who took it.

Mum's partner dropped by during the evening and we told him too. He was very emotional and gave back his key as he left. It was all pretty awful.

We ended up staying past the end of visiting hours, and the staff were very accommodating and left us be. We ended up telling mum and though she hadn't been spoken to explicitly (that she can remember, she's spent most of today pretty much asleep) she didn't seem at all surprised, or even terribly upset. We said that the DNR is ultimately her decision, as despite the sleepiness, her mind is still sharp. She said she agreed with our decision.

We told her how much we love her, and how proud we are of her, and how brilliant she's been and kissed her a lot. She said how much she loves us. We asked if she wanted us to stay and she said no.

So we came home. Via my aunties, who made us drinks and listened to us go through it logically. Ben drove home, which is good because I'm not sure I was capable.

Writing it all out now, it probably sounds a good deal more calm than it was. It involved much more intermittent crying from everyone (except mum) than I state here. Now I'm rather calmer. Still fairly near tears but oddly numb.

Today was awful. Really awful. Really really awful. And there's only a slim chance it will get better soon. Thank you to everyone who has sent thoughts and prayers. They're helping keep me afloat right now. More of the same please.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (me - mummy and little lizzie)
Ben and I spent some time today sorting out some flowers and a balloon for mum's cubicle at the hospital, to make it a little more bright, having first checked that the ward allows flowers. We ended up getting a beautiful box of flowers from Mad Lillies in Banstead, which is where we got our wedding flowers from. That done, and with Phil back from work, we all headed up to Tooting to visit mum, getting to the hospital at about 5:15pm.

It was immediately clear that mum was worse than yesterday. They had her hooked up to a heart monitor, nasal oxygen on her and several different lines and things going in to her. She looked much weaker than yesterday, much sleepier, and she was having more nasty puss-y discharge from her nose than yesterday. Ben said hi and then went down to the cafe for a coffee - St Georges helpfully has an M&S food hall and cafe, which is a real bonus and all round fabulous idea - and Phil and I dumped our bags at the end of the bed, and then went through mum's post with her and read to her from BBC History magazine, which was all I had on me.

After a bit, one of the doctors came over and wanted to speak with me and Phil, so we dropped everything and went with her to a private room. A nurse got me a hot drink and really I should have known. That is never ever a good sign.

What the doctor had to say was incredibly hard for Phil and I to hear. What she wanted to do was tell us where we were up to today, and discuss with us a Do Not Resuscitate order.

She explained to us that while mum's blood sugar was much better (down to 11), she was much much worse than she had been 24 hours earlier. Mum's heart is getting very weak and mum herself is very tired. And she didn't mean that in a "she'll sleep and wake up refreshed" way, but in a "probably wanting to die" sort of way. And mum herself said later that she was very tired. Mum's resting heart rate is between 130 and 170bpm and the doctor thought it quite likely that at some point over the weekend it would stop. She also said that mum was in a lot of pain, and had been put on a morphine infusion earlier in the day to deal with the pain (previously she was on 30mg Codeine).

The hardest bit to hear was that she didn't think that mum's quality of life would get any better, even if the tumour does shrink a little bit (and the likelihood is that even if they can pull her through this, she will probably not be fit enough for radiotherapy), and she will continue to be in a lot of pain. She said that the consultants - Mr Mady, Mr Williamson and another (Mr Lee?) had met, and felt that the best and kindest thing would be not to resuscitate mum if her heart did stop. Phil and I were left to talk, and we called mum's brother and my aunt (dad's sister) and we all agreed that a DNR was the kindest thing that we could do. We (me and Phil) felt, and still feel, that to bring her back for more pain and suffering and poor quality of life is really just selfishness on our part. So we told the staff that we didn't want them to try and bring her back if her heart or breathing stop.

About 45 mins after the doctor had taken Phil and I aside, and when I finally could think about anything again, I found that my bag, that I'd stupidly dropped at the end of mum's bed earlier had gone missing. Phil's was still there. We searched the ward for it, and couldn't find it. The nursing staff were horrified and reported it to security, and I spent the next hour searching for my bag, reporting the theft and cancelling my cards. In the morning I need to call the DVLA.

There was nothing especially of value in there - just my notebooks (which I'm sad, especially as there were some untyped up stories) to lose) and my backpack (which I'm very sad to lose, especially given it had lots of keyrings I'd collected and things on it which made it an individual thing), and my purse, which had next to no actual money in it, just awkward things like cards and my driving licence in it. But the hour I spent having to report the loss and cancel the cards was an hour I couldn't spend with my critically ill mum, and if she dies tonight I really don't know how I could ever forgive the person who took it.

Mum's partner dropped by during the evening and we told him too. He was very emotional and gave back his key as he left. It was all pretty awful.

We ended up staying past the end of visiting hours, and the staff were very accommodating and left us be. We ended up telling mum and though she hadn't been spoken to explicitly (that she can remember, she's spent most of today pretty much asleep) she didn't seem at all surprised, or even terribly upset. We said that the DNR is ultimately her decision, as despite the sleepiness, her mind is still sharp. She said she agreed with our decision.

We told her how much we love her, and how proud we are of her, and how brilliant she's been and kissed her a lot. She said how much she loves us. We asked if she wanted us to stay and she said no.

So we came home. Via my aunties, who made us drinks and listened to us go through it logically. Ben drove home, which is good because I'm not sure I was capable.

Writing it all out now, it probably sounds a good deal more calm than it was. It involved much more intermittent crying from everyone (except mum) than I state here. Now I'm rather calmer. Still fairly near tears but oddly numb.

Today was awful. Really awful. Really really awful. And there's only a slim chance it will get better soon. Thank you to everyone who has sent thoughts and prayers. They're helping keep me afloat right now. More of the same please.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (me - mummy and little lizzie)
Ben and I spent some time today sorting out some flowers and a balloon for mum's cubicle at the hospital, to make it a little more bright, having first checked that the ward allows flowers. We ended up getting a beautiful box of flowers from Mad Lillies in Banstead, which is where we got our wedding flowers from. That done, and with Phil back from work, we all headed up to Tooting to visit mum, getting to the hospital at about 5:15pm.

It was immediately clear that mum was worse than yesterday. They had her hooked up to a heart monitor, nasal oxygen on her and several different lines and things going in to her. She looked much weaker than yesterday, much sleepier, and she was having more nasty puss-y discharge from her nose than yesterday. Ben said hi and then went down to the cafe for a coffee - St Georges helpfully has an M&S food hall and cafe, which is a real bonus and all round fabulous idea - and Phil and I dumped our bags at the end of the bed, and then went through mum's post with her and read to her from BBC History magazine, which was all I had on me.

After a bit, one of the doctors came over and wanted to speak with me and Phil, so we dropped everything and went with her to a private room. A nurse got me a hot drink and really I should have known. That is never ever a good sign.

What the doctor had to say was incredibly hard for Phil and I to hear. What she wanted to do was tell us where we were up to today, and discuss with us a Do Not Resuscitate order.

She explained to us that while mum's blood sugar was much better (down to 11), she was much much worse than she had been 24 hours earlier. Mum's heart is getting very weak and mum herself is very tired. And she didn't mean that in a "she'll sleep and wake up refreshed" way, but in a "probably wanting to die" sort of way. And mum herself said later that she was very tired. Mum's resting heart rate is between 130 and 170bpm and the doctor thought it quite likely that at some point over the weekend it would stop. She also said that mum was in a lot of pain, and had been put on a morphine infusion earlier in the day to deal with the pain (previously she was on 30mg Codeine).

The hardest bit to hear was that she didn't think that mum's quality of life would get any better, even if the tumour does shrink a little bit (and the likelihood is that even if they can pull her through this, she will probably not be fit enough for radiotherapy), and she will continue to be in a lot of pain. She said that the consultants - Mr Mady, Mr Williamson and another (Mr Lee?) had met, and felt that the best and kindest thing would be not to resuscitate mum if her heart did stop. Phil and I were left to talk, and we called mum's brother and my aunt (dad's sister) and we all agreed that a DNR was the kindest thing that we could do. We (me and Phil) felt, and still feel, that to bring her back for more pain and suffering and poor quality of life is really just selfishness on our part. So we told the staff that we didn't want them to try and bring her back if her heart or breathing stop.

About 45 mins after the doctor had taken Phil and I aside, and when I finally could think about anything again, I found that my bag, that I'd stupidly dropped at the end of mum's bed earlier had gone missing. Phil's was still there. We searched the ward for it, and couldn't find it. The nursing staff were horrified and reported it to security, and I spent the next hour searching for my bag, reporting the theft and cancelling my cards. In the morning I need to call the DVLA.

There was nothing especially of value in there - just my notebooks (which I'm sad, especially as there were some untyped up stories) to lose) and my backpack (which I'm very sad to lose, especially given it had lots of keyrings I'd collected and things on it which made it an individual thing), and my purse, which had next to no actual money in it, just awkward things like cards and my driving licence in it. But the hour I spent having to report the loss and cancel the cards was an hour I couldn't spend with my critically ill mum, and if she dies tonight I really don't know how I could ever forgive the person who took it.

Mum's partner dropped by during the evening and we told him too. He was very emotional and gave back his key as he left. It was all pretty awful.

We ended up staying past the end of visiting hours, and the staff were very accommodating and left us be. We ended up telling mum and though she hadn't been spoken to explicitly (that she can remember, she's spent most of today pretty much asleep) she didn't seem at all surprised, or even terribly upset. We said that the DNR is ultimately her decision, as despite the sleepiness, her mind is still sharp. She said she agreed with our decision.

We told her how much we love her, and how proud we are of her, and how brilliant she's been and kissed her a lot. She said how much she loves us. We asked if she wanted us to stay and she said no.

So we came home. Via my aunties, who made us drinks and listened to us go through it logically. Ben drove home, which is good because I'm not sure I was capable.

Writing it all out now, it probably sounds a good deal more calm than it was. It involved much more intermittent crying from everyone (except mum) than I state here. Now I'm rather calmer. Still fairly near tears but oddly numb.

Today was awful. Really awful. Really really awful. And there's only a slim chance it will get better soon. Thank you to everyone who has sent thoughts and prayers. They're helping keep me afloat right now. More of the same please.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (Default)
As the title says, today has been a very long and fairly shitty day. Came up to take mum to the St Georges ENT clinic today, but it was obvious fairly early on that mum was having one of her bad days. On the way to St Georges mum was sick. Luckily in to a bowl, but it took me 10 mins (blocking a bus stop, where I'd hurriedly pulled over in a bit of a panic, with my car) to actually empty the bowl down a drain. All the while I was apologising for being rubbish. Then, because I was still retching, I made mum rinse it out with some bottled water, making me even more rubbish, and probably a terrible person who is going straight to hell.

Mum ended this weak as a kitten, probably not helped by the fact her blood sugar was up at 26 (7 is normal) and needed a wheelchair from the entrance of the hospital to the clinic. Because of the sickness, mum missed her appointment slot of 11:15 (though we did call to notify them - and when we got there at 11:20 it took half an hour of queueing to book mum in because of problems caused by a new computer system) and we ended up not being seen until about 12:45.

When we got in, mum was promptly sick again in front of the doctor - not lovely Mr Williamson, which was a shame because I didn't like the doctor we did see (Mr Mady, and a visiting consultant from the Royal Marsden who I liked more) - who appeared to be frozen in horror for a good thirty seconds after the vomiting started. When the vomiting was over, and mum a bit more settled, though feeling seriously shitty, Mr Mady said "well, it's definitely cancer..."

Honestly, the way he said it, if I wasn't already so tired I'd have laughed. Mum sounded pissed and said what we were all thinking "We already knew that". The way the man announced it, he said it like it was new news. In fact, the only thing we've known for weeks is that it is cancer of some type or other. Then he told us that it didn't much matter what type now, and they were going to offer radiotherapy, starting in a couple of weeks at the Marsden in Sutton. Apparently the timescale for starting radiotherapy is pretty fast as far as starting radiotherapy is concerned. I don't know how true that is though. Then mum was sick again and they said she looked dreadful, I told them about her high blood sugar and they said they wanted to admit her. In fact, Mr Mady said it three or four times and we agreed each time, which irritated me (the repeated statement) - in fact he did that several times with different things and that really annoyed me, which I think is why I don't really like him. He appeared to treat us like we were stupid, which is a huge bug bear for me. The really awful news though, given by the nicer doctor - from the Royal Marsden - is that if the tumour doesn't respond to the radiotherapy, we're looking at a life span of "months rather than years".

I knew in my gut that months was probably what we were looking at if the tumour couldn't be shrunk, but to have it confirmed was a really nasty moment and made a fairly shitty day a really mostly shitty day.

Then we had to wait around for a bed to be found for mum, for nearly four hours in fact, which was punctuated frequently by mum telling us how much she wanted to lie down. They did some admitting stuff at the clinic and tested her blood sugar again. This time it was a 33.

Mum was admitted to a ward where they catheterised her and started on a sliding scale of IV insulin to get her blood sugar back under control, put on saline to rehydrate her and they may at some point start her on some more steroids. All of this is with a view to getting her fit to start radiotherapy. At the moment they're looking at three or four days in St Georges, possibly transferring her to the Royal Marsden at Sutton as an inpatient after a few days. It really depends on how she responds to treatment and where they decide to go from there.

While they got her settled, the wonderful Fiona, mum's Macmillan Nurse brought me a cup of hot chocolate and some biscuits that were the first food and drink to pass my lips all day, which given it was 4pm was not a good thing. Then she told me to make sure I took proper care of myself.

So right now I'm shattered, physically and mentally. I spent a good deal of the time waiting at the clinic and then waiting for a bed standing, and then once mum was settled I came back to mum's to get Phil and her stuff (which Phil sorted out for me), back to St Georges to drop stuff off and see her before visiting hours ended, then back to mum's again. In between times, I made calls to various people to tell them what was going on so it could be passed down the phone tree. On the upside, I got back to mum's to find ben, who came up on the spur of the moment, on the back of today's developments, having been given a lift by a work colleague who goes on my list of people who I will never be able to thank adequately.

Been a long and shitty day therefore. I think tomorrow will be pretty long too. And this post has taken me forever because I'm using ben's eeepc and samsung nc10 (ben made me swap because I was getting wound up at the tiny keyboard on the eee) because the hinge on my thinkpad is broken... but more on that another time. This post is quite long enough already.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (Default)
As the title says, today has been a very long and fairly shitty day. Came up to take mum to the St Georges ENT clinic today, but it was obvious fairly early on that mum was having one of her bad days. On the way to St Georges mum was sick. Luckily in to a bowl, but it took me 10 mins (blocking a bus stop, where I'd hurriedly pulled over in a bit of a panic, with my car) to actually empty the bowl down a drain. All the while I was apologising for being rubbish. Then, because I was still retching, I made mum rinse it out with some bottled water, making me even more rubbish, and probably a terrible person who is going straight to hell.

Mum ended this weak as a kitten, probably not helped by the fact her blood sugar was up at 26 (7 is normal) and needed a wheelchair from the entrance of the hospital to the clinic. Because of the sickness, mum missed her appointment slot of 11:15 (though we did call to notify them - and when we got there at 11:20 it took half an hour of queueing to book mum in because of problems caused by a new computer system) and we ended up not being seen until about 12:45.

When we got in, mum was promptly sick again in front of the doctor - not lovely Mr Williamson, which was a shame because I didn't like the doctor we did see (Mr Mady, and a visiting consultant from the Royal Marsden who I liked more) - who appeared to be frozen in horror for a good thirty seconds after the vomiting started. When the vomiting was over, and mum a bit more settled, though feeling seriously shitty, Mr Mady said "well, it's definitely cancer..."

Honestly, the way he said it, if I wasn't already so tired I'd have laughed. Mum sounded pissed and said what we were all thinking "We already knew that". The way the man announced it, he said it like it was new news. In fact, the only thing we've known for weeks is that it is cancer of some type or other. Then he told us that it didn't much matter what type now, and they were going to offer radiotherapy, starting in a couple of weeks at the Marsden in Sutton. Apparently the timescale for starting radiotherapy is pretty fast as far as starting radiotherapy is concerned. I don't know how true that is though. Then mum was sick again and they said she looked dreadful, I told them about her high blood sugar and they said they wanted to admit her. In fact, Mr Mady said it three or four times and we agreed each time, which irritated me (the repeated statement) - in fact he did that several times with different things and that really annoyed me, which I think is why I don't really like him. He appeared to treat us like we were stupid, which is a huge bug bear for me. The really awful news though, given by the nicer doctor - from the Royal Marsden - is that if the tumour doesn't respond to the radiotherapy, we're looking at a life span of "months rather than years".

I knew in my gut that months was probably what we were looking at if the tumour couldn't be shrunk, but to have it confirmed was a really nasty moment and made a fairly shitty day a really mostly shitty day.

Then we had to wait around for a bed to be found for mum, for nearly four hours in fact, which was punctuated frequently by mum telling us how much she wanted to lie down. They did some admitting stuff at the clinic and tested her blood sugar again. This time it was a 33.

Mum was admitted to a ward where they catheterised her and started on a sliding scale of IV insulin to get her blood sugar back under control, put on saline to rehydrate her and they may at some point start her on some more steroids. All of this is with a view to getting her fit to start radiotherapy. At the moment they're looking at three or four days in St Georges, possibly transferring her to the Royal Marsden at Sutton as an inpatient after a few days. It really depends on how she responds to treatment and where they decide to go from there.

While they got her settled, the wonderful Fiona, mum's Macmillan Nurse brought me a cup of hot chocolate and some biscuits that were the first food and drink to pass my lips all day, which given it was 4pm was not a good thing. Then she told me to make sure I took proper care of myself.

So right now I'm shattered, physically and mentally. I spent a good deal of the time waiting at the clinic and then waiting for a bed standing, and then once mum was settled I came back to mum's to get Phil and her stuff (which Phil sorted out for me), back to St Georges to drop stuff off and see her before visiting hours ended, then back to mum's again. In between times, I made calls to various people to tell them what was going on so it could be passed down the phone tree. On the upside, I got back to mum's to find ben, who came up on the spur of the moment, on the back of today's developments, having been given a lift by a work colleague who goes on my list of people who I will never be able to thank adequately.

Been a long and shitty day therefore. I think tomorrow will be pretty long too. And this post has taken me forever because I'm using ben's eeepc and samsung nc10 (ben made me swap because I was getting wound up at the tiny keyboard on the eee) because the hinge on my thinkpad is broken... but more on that another time. This post is quite long enough already.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (Default)
As the title says, today has been a very long and fairly shitty day. Came up to take mum to the St Georges ENT clinic today, but it was obvious fairly early on that mum was having one of her bad days. On the way to St Georges mum was sick. Luckily in to a bowl, but it took me 10 mins (blocking a bus stop, where I'd hurriedly pulled over in a bit of a panic, with my car) to actually empty the bowl down a drain. All the while I was apologising for being rubbish. Then, because I was still retching, I made mum rinse it out with some bottled water, making me even more rubbish, and probably a terrible person who is going straight to hell.

Mum ended this weak as a kitten, probably not helped by the fact her blood sugar was up at 26 (7 is normal) and needed a wheelchair from the entrance of the hospital to the clinic. Because of the sickness, mum missed her appointment slot of 11:15 (though we did call to notify them - and when we got there at 11:20 it took half an hour of queueing to book mum in because of problems caused by a new computer system) and we ended up not being seen until about 12:45.

When we got in, mum was promptly sick again in front of the doctor - not lovely Mr Williamson, which was a shame because I didn't like the doctor we did see (Mr Mady, and a visiting consultant from the Royal Marsden who I liked more) - who appeared to be frozen in horror for a good thirty seconds after the vomiting started. When the vomiting was over, and mum a bit more settled, though feeling seriously shitty, Mr Mady said "well, it's definitely cancer..."

Honestly, the way he said it, if I wasn't already so tired I'd have laughed. Mum sounded pissed and said what we were all thinking "We already knew that". The way the man announced it, he said it like it was new news. In fact, the only thing we've known for weeks is that it is cancer of some type or other. Then he told us that it didn't much matter what type now, and they were going to offer radiotherapy, starting in a couple of weeks at the Marsden in Sutton. Apparently the timescale for starting radiotherapy is pretty fast as far as starting radiotherapy is concerned. I don't know how true that is though. Then mum was sick again and they said she looked dreadful, I told them about her high blood sugar and they said they wanted to admit her. In fact, Mr Mady said it three or four times and we agreed each time, which irritated me (the repeated statement) - in fact he did that several times with different things and that really annoyed me, which I think is why I don't really like him. He appeared to treat us like we were stupid, which is a huge bug bear for me. The really awful news though, given by the nicer doctor - from the Royal Marsden - is that if the tumour doesn't respond to the radiotherapy, we're looking at a life span of "months rather than years".

I knew in my gut that months was probably what we were looking at if the tumour couldn't be shrunk, but to have it confirmed was a really nasty moment and made a fairly shitty day a really mostly shitty day.

Then we had to wait around for a bed to be found for mum, for nearly four hours in fact, which was punctuated frequently by mum telling us how much she wanted to lie down. They did some admitting stuff at the clinic and tested her blood sugar again. This time it was a 33.

Mum was admitted to a ward where they catheterised her and started on a sliding scale of IV insulin to get her blood sugar back under control, put on saline to rehydrate her and they may at some point start her on some more steroids. All of this is with a view to getting her fit to start radiotherapy. At the moment they're looking at three or four days in St Georges, possibly transferring her to the Royal Marsden at Sutton as an inpatient after a few days. It really depends on how she responds to treatment and where they decide to go from there.

While they got her settled, the wonderful Fiona, mum's Macmillan Nurse brought me a cup of hot chocolate and some biscuits that were the first food and drink to pass my lips all day, which given it was 4pm was not a good thing. Then she told me to make sure I took proper care of myself.

So right now I'm shattered, physically and mentally. I spent a good deal of the time waiting at the clinic and then waiting for a bed standing, and then once mum was settled I came back to mum's to get Phil and her stuff (which Phil sorted out for me), back to St Georges to drop stuff off and see her before visiting hours ended, then back to mum's again. In between times, I made calls to various people to tell them what was going on so it could be passed down the phone tree. On the upside, I got back to mum's to find ben, who came up on the spur of the moment, on the back of today's developments, having been given a lift by a work colleague who goes on my list of people who I will never be able to thank adequately.

Been a long and shitty day therefore. I think tomorrow will be pretty long too. And this post has taken me forever because I'm using ben's eeepc and samsung nc10 (ben made me swap because I was getting wound up at the tiny keyboard on the eee) because the hinge on my thinkpad is broken... but more on that another time. This post is quite long enough already.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (Rocks fall)
We went to St Georges ENT clinic again today, in the absence of any news in the meantime, and the news we got from Mr Williamson today is not good. Looking at it objectively, I suppose it's not the worst news we could have had - mum won't die tomorrow - but it pretty much extinguishes all hope, and from that point of view it doesn't get much worse.

The pathologists at St Georges were unable to make a diagnosis of mum's tumour from the samples taken at biopsy and so they've sent it to a Professor Fisher at the Royal Marsden (think he's the guy at the bottom here, which makes him sound like he's pretty much a world expert) who is pretty much the last chance for identifying the tumour, and it's a pretty slim chance. It's likely that we will never find out what the tumour is.

If they can't identify the tumour then they won't be able to offer Chemotherapy, as different tumours react in different ways to different drugs, and as I mentioned before, surgery is out because the tumour is wrapped around mum's Carotid artery. Mr Williamson pretty much said today that there is a very good chance that the cancer/tumour is terminal, and that the most that they will be able to do for mum is palliative radiotherapy.

Failing any news before next Thursday we'll be seeing him again for a confirmation that there's not much they can do. After that (or before, depending on when they know for sure) they'll refer mum to the Royal Marsden at Sutton for the radiotherapy.

In the meantime, mum's been given five days worth of steroids in the hope that they can quell some of the worst symptoms by reducing the swelling and inflammation that's being caused by the tumour. The downside to this is that the steriods will mess with mum's diabetes management and in the worst case scenareo she will end up in hospital for constant monitoring and possibly be on an insulin drip. The steriods are at a low dose to try and ward off problems, but that means there's less chance of them having an effect. The Macmillan nurse (Fiona) at St Georges is contacting the diabetic nurse at mum's GP to arrange for close-ish monitoring, though I don't know how we'll manage over the weekend. Hopefully some more answers on that tomorrow.

I don't know yet if I'm going home this weekend. I don't want to be in Canterbury if mum does end up in hospital because of the steriod/diabetes mix. Mostly right now I'm trying to deal with the fact that the diagnosis is almost certainly terminal. I feel like I did back at the cancer diagnosis. I'm swinging wildly between numb-Lizzie, planning-Lizzie and sobbing-her-heart-out-Lizzie. Ben's taken tomorrow off work and will be arriving tonight, which will be good as I feel like I need someone not so emotionally involved to lean on. Phil just came home and we hugged like we haven't hugged in ages.

Feel awful.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (Rocks fall)
We went to St Georges ENT clinic again today, in the absence of any news in the meantime, and the news we got from Mr Williamson today is not good. Looking at it objectively, I suppose it's not the worst news we could have had - mum won't die tomorrow - but it pretty much extinguishes all hope, and from that point of view it doesn't get much worse.

The pathologists at St Georges were unable to make a diagnosis of mum's tumour from the samples taken at biopsy and so they've sent it to a Professor Fisher at the Royal Marsden (think he's the guy at the bottom here, which makes him sound like he's pretty much a world expert) who is pretty much the last chance for identifying the tumour, and it's a pretty slim chance. It's likely that we will never find out what the tumour is.

If they can't identify the tumour then they won't be able to offer Chemotherapy, as different tumours react in different ways to different drugs, and as I mentioned before, surgery is out because the tumour is wrapped around mum's Carotid artery. Mr Williamson pretty much said today that there is a very good chance that the cancer/tumour is terminal, and that the most that they will be able to do for mum is palliative radiotherapy.

Failing any news before next Thursday we'll be seeing him again for a confirmation that there's not much they can do. After that (or before, depending on when they know for sure) they'll refer mum to the Royal Marsden at Sutton for the radiotherapy.

In the meantime, mum's been given five days worth of steroids in the hope that they can quell some of the worst symptoms by reducing the swelling and inflammation that's being caused by the tumour. The downside to this is that the steriods will mess with mum's diabetes management and in the worst case scenareo she will end up in hospital for constant monitoring and possibly be on an insulin drip. The steriods are at a low dose to try and ward off problems, but that means there's less chance of them having an effect. The Macmillan nurse (Fiona) at St Georges is contacting the diabetic nurse at mum's GP to arrange for close-ish monitoring, though I don't know how we'll manage over the weekend. Hopefully some more answers on that tomorrow.

I don't know yet if I'm going home this weekend. I don't want to be in Canterbury if mum does end up in hospital because of the steriod/diabetes mix. Mostly right now I'm trying to deal with the fact that the diagnosis is almost certainly terminal. I feel like I did back at the cancer diagnosis. I'm swinging wildly between numb-Lizzie, planning-Lizzie and sobbing-her-heart-out-Lizzie. Ben's taken tomorrow off work and will be arriving tonight, which will be good as I feel like I need someone not so emotionally involved to lean on. Phil just came home and we hugged like we haven't hugged in ages.

Feel awful.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (Rocks fall)
We went to St Georges ENT clinic again today, in the absence of any news in the meantime, and the news we got from Mr Williamson today is not good. Looking at it objectively, I suppose it's not the worst news we could have had - mum won't die tomorrow - but it pretty much extinguishes all hope, and from that point of view it doesn't get much worse.

The pathologists at St Georges were unable to make a diagnosis of mum's tumour from the samples taken at biopsy and so they've sent it to a Professor Fisher at the Royal Marsden (think he's the guy at the bottom here, which makes him sound like he's pretty much a world expert) who is pretty much the last chance for identifying the tumour, and it's a pretty slim chance. It's likely that we will never find out what the tumour is.

If they can't identify the tumour then they won't be able to offer Chemotherapy, as different tumours react in different ways to different drugs, and as I mentioned before, surgery is out because the tumour is wrapped around mum's Carotid artery. Mr Williamson pretty much said today that there is a very good chance that the cancer/tumour is terminal, and that the most that they will be able to do for mum is palliative radiotherapy.

Failing any news before next Thursday we'll be seeing him again for a confirmation that there's not much they can do. After that (or before, depending on when they know for sure) they'll refer mum to the Royal Marsden at Sutton for the radiotherapy.

In the meantime, mum's been given five days worth of steroids in the hope that they can quell some of the worst symptoms by reducing the swelling and inflammation that's being caused by the tumour. The downside to this is that the steriods will mess with mum's diabetes management and in the worst case scenareo she will end up in hospital for constant monitoring and possibly be on an insulin drip. The steriods are at a low dose to try and ward off problems, but that means there's less chance of them having an effect. The Macmillan nurse (Fiona) at St Georges is contacting the diabetic nurse at mum's GP to arrange for close-ish monitoring, though I don't know how we'll manage over the weekend. Hopefully some more answers on that tomorrow.

I don't know yet if I'm going home this weekend. I don't want to be in Canterbury if mum does end up in hospital because of the steriod/diabetes mix. Mostly right now I'm trying to deal with the fact that the diagnosis is almost certainly terminal. I feel like I did back at the cancer diagnosis. I'm swinging wildly between numb-Lizzie, planning-Lizzie and sobbing-her-heart-out-Lizzie. Ben's taken tomorrow off work and will be arriving tonight, which will be good as I feel like I need someone not so emotionally involved to lean on. Phil just came home and we hugged like we haven't hugged in ages.

Feel awful.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (animals - duckling-bum)
Not updated this for a few days (a week?), owing to being very busy indeed. Ben arrived on Wednesday night and took me out to dinner (and was generally fabulous the entire time he was here), and we spent most of Thursday and Friday sorting stuff out for mum's birthday, doing various errands and helping mum celebrate her birthday, before getting back to Canterbury late on Friday night for the rest of our weekend. Mum had a passable few days that week, though had a huge headache on Friday night that necessitated calling the doctor for some stronger painkillers than she had been taking (uber co-codamol, as the Tramadol the hospital gave her makes her feel sick). The headache thing worried me a bit as it brought to the forefront of my mind my worries about what a highly aggressive tumour (the drs at the hospital said it was because of the speed it had caused symptoms and degeneration in function in her face, though as of yet, we still don't know what it is) has been doing in the weeks between the first diagnosis of a tumour and now. I keep worrying that the gap between then and now will mean that a treatable tumour will have become terminal in the meantime. Which is silly, because I'm worrying about things that a) I have no control over and b) haven't even come to pass yet.

The MRI is scheduled for today at 12:15 and I'm hoping I can get mum to the hospital and back without her being sick. Attacks of sickness and nausea are becoming more frequent and I think they may be related to the tumour(s). Of all the symptoms mum has, this is the one I struggle with most. I hate vomit. It makes me want to vomit. Yesterday mum was sick several times and it took me 10 mins and nearly losing the contents of my own stomach 5 or 6 times before I got it from the bowl into the loo. It was ok so long as I wasn't looking at it. No nausea or retching as long as I had my eyes shut or it in a different room, but it's hardly a valid strategy for anything other than getting vomit over the floor between the living room and downstairs loo. Once the bowl was cleared of vomit it was fine - no retching or anything while I cleaned it out with water and then dettol'd it. I know there's probably a good deal more vomit in my future and it's one of the things that worries me a lot. Rather pathetic I know. In the great scheme of things it's not really that bad, but I really can't deal with it. I assume that I will get better at dealing with it. I hope I do, for mum's sake anyway.

Mum saw the diabetic nurse yesterday for a routine review and asked some questions I'd asked her to ask and it seems that the diabetic nurse was about as much use as a chocolate teapot. Mum was diagnosed with type 2 just before the symptoms of the tumour became apparent, so the treatment of the type 2 features in the complicated mess of trying to get some calories in to mum. I've probably mentioned before that the tumour on her cheekbone makes it hard for her to eat, especially anything hard, and makes eating extremely slow and hard work. On top of this, which makes her disinclined to eat, is the nausea and vomiting, which makes it extremely difficult to tempt her appetite. She's losing a lot of weight, which I suppose is good from the type 2 diabetes POV but I don't think she's losing it in the right way. She's barely eating, sometimes not keeping down what she does eat and so it's just melting off her. I'm worried that she won't have the energy to deal with whatever treatment she has for the cancer and that she will get malnourished. Sometimes when she's been sick the only thing she feels like eating(or that she can eat) is something that is bad from a diabetes POV like carrot cake, which then gives her the energy to eat something better for her. The only fruit she can manage is raspberries, grapes and blueberries. It's not really ideal.

The diabetic nurse said that if that was all she could manage (the carrot cake type thing) then she should eat that, but it was better if she could manage something like soup and bread. Which is what we were doing, but I feel as much in the dark as to how to deal with mum's nutrition problems as I did before, and I'm angry and upset about that. I got more help from my Auntie Pat (type 2 for years and years) who said that mum was eating so little the sugars issue didn't really feature too high and I should just get calories in to her where and when I could. Really I shouldn't be getting more helpful and less wishy washy advice from my aunt, who is not a medical professional than from a nurse with a speciality in that area.

Gah, it's all so complicated :(

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (animals - duckling-bum)
Not updated this for a few days (a week?), owing to being very busy indeed. Ben arrived on Wednesday night and took me out to dinner (and was generally fabulous the entire time he was here), and we spent most of Thursday and Friday sorting stuff out for mum's birthday, doing various errands and helping mum celebrate her birthday, before getting back to Canterbury late on Friday night for the rest of our weekend. Mum had a passable few days that week, though had a huge headache on Friday night that necessitated calling the doctor for some stronger painkillers than she had been taking (uber co-codamol, as the Tramadol the hospital gave her makes her feel sick). The headache thing worried me a bit as it brought to the forefront of my mind my worries about what a highly aggressive tumour (the drs at the hospital said it was because of the speed it had caused symptoms and degeneration in function in her face, though as of yet, we still don't know what it is) has been doing in the weeks between the first diagnosis of a tumour and now. I keep worrying that the gap between then and now will mean that a treatable tumour will have become terminal in the meantime. Which is silly, because I'm worrying about things that a) I have no control over and b) haven't even come to pass yet.

The MRI is scheduled for today at 12:15 and I'm hoping I can get mum to the hospital and back without her being sick. Attacks of sickness and nausea are becoming more frequent and I think they may be related to the tumour(s). Of all the symptoms mum has, this is the one I struggle with most. I hate vomit. It makes me want to vomit. Yesterday mum was sick several times and it took me 10 mins and nearly losing the contents of my own stomach 5 or 6 times before I got it from the bowl into the loo. It was ok so long as I wasn't looking at it. No nausea or retching as long as I had my eyes shut or it in a different room, but it's hardly a valid strategy for anything other than getting vomit over the floor between the living room and downstairs loo. Once the bowl was cleared of vomit it was fine - no retching or anything while I cleaned it out with water and then dettol'd it. I know there's probably a good deal more vomit in my future and it's one of the things that worries me a lot. Rather pathetic I know. In the great scheme of things it's not really that bad, but I really can't deal with it. I assume that I will get better at dealing with it. I hope I do, for mum's sake anyway.

Mum saw the diabetic nurse yesterday for a routine review and asked some questions I'd asked her to ask and it seems that the diabetic nurse was about as much use as a chocolate teapot. Mum was diagnosed with type 2 just before the symptoms of the tumour became apparent, so the treatment of the type 2 features in the complicated mess of trying to get some calories in to mum. I've probably mentioned before that the tumour on her cheekbone makes it hard for her to eat, especially anything hard, and makes eating extremely slow and hard work. On top of this, which makes her disinclined to eat, is the nausea and vomiting, which makes it extremely difficult to tempt her appetite. She's losing a lot of weight, which I suppose is good from the type 2 diabetes POV but I don't think she's losing it in the right way. She's barely eating, sometimes not keeping down what she does eat and so it's just melting off her. I'm worried that she won't have the energy to deal with whatever treatment she has for the cancer and that she will get malnourished. Sometimes when she's been sick the only thing she feels like eating(or that she can eat) is something that is bad from a diabetes POV like carrot cake, which then gives her the energy to eat something better for her. The only fruit she can manage is raspberries, grapes and blueberries. It's not really ideal.

The diabetic nurse said that if that was all she could manage (the carrot cake type thing) then she should eat that, but it was better if she could manage something like soup and bread. Which is what we were doing, but I feel as much in the dark as to how to deal with mum's nutrition problems as I did before, and I'm angry and upset about that. I got more help from my Auntie Pat (type 2 for years and years) who said that mum was eating so little the sugars issue didn't really feature too high and I should just get calories in to her where and when I could. Really I shouldn't be getting more helpful and less wishy washy advice from my aunt, who is not a medical professional than from a nurse with a speciality in that area.

Gah, it's all so complicated :(

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (animals - duckling-bum)
Not updated this for a few days (a week?), owing to being very busy indeed. Ben arrived on Wednesday night and took me out to dinner (and was generally fabulous the entire time he was here), and we spent most of Thursday and Friday sorting stuff out for mum's birthday, doing various errands and helping mum celebrate her birthday, before getting back to Canterbury late on Friday night for the rest of our weekend. Mum had a passable few days that week, though had a huge headache on Friday night that necessitated calling the doctor for some stronger painkillers than she had been taking (uber co-codamol, as the Tramadol the hospital gave her makes her feel sick). The headache thing worried me a bit as it brought to the forefront of my mind my worries about what a highly aggressive tumour (the drs at the hospital said it was because of the speed it had caused symptoms and degeneration in function in her face, though as of yet, we still don't know what it is) has been doing in the weeks between the first diagnosis of a tumour and now. I keep worrying that the gap between then and now will mean that a treatable tumour will have become terminal in the meantime. Which is silly, because I'm worrying about things that a) I have no control over and b) haven't even come to pass yet.

The MRI is scheduled for today at 12:15 and I'm hoping I can get mum to the hospital and back without her being sick. Attacks of sickness and nausea are becoming more frequent and I think they may be related to the tumour(s). Of all the symptoms mum has, this is the one I struggle with most. I hate vomit. It makes me want to vomit. Yesterday mum was sick several times and it took me 10 mins and nearly losing the contents of my own stomach 5 or 6 times before I got it from the bowl into the loo. It was ok so long as I wasn't looking at it. No nausea or retching as long as I had my eyes shut or it in a different room, but it's hardly a valid strategy for anything other than getting vomit over the floor between the living room and downstairs loo. Once the bowl was cleared of vomit it was fine - no retching or anything while I cleaned it out with water and then dettol'd it. I know there's probably a good deal more vomit in my future and it's one of the things that worries me a lot. Rather pathetic I know. In the great scheme of things it's not really that bad, but I really can't deal with it. I assume that I will get better at dealing with it. I hope I do, for mum's sake anyway.

Mum saw the diabetic nurse yesterday for a routine review and asked some questions I'd asked her to ask and it seems that the diabetic nurse was about as much use as a chocolate teapot. Mum was diagnosed with type 2 just before the symptoms of the tumour became apparent, so the treatment of the type 2 features in the complicated mess of trying to get some calories in to mum. I've probably mentioned before that the tumour on her cheekbone makes it hard for her to eat, especially anything hard, and makes eating extremely slow and hard work. On top of this, which makes her disinclined to eat, is the nausea and vomiting, which makes it extremely difficult to tempt her appetite. She's losing a lot of weight, which I suppose is good from the type 2 diabetes POV but I don't think she's losing it in the right way. She's barely eating, sometimes not keeping down what she does eat and so it's just melting off her. I'm worried that she won't have the energy to deal with whatever treatment she has for the cancer and that she will get malnourished. Sometimes when she's been sick the only thing she feels like eating(or that she can eat) is something that is bad from a diabetes POV like carrot cake, which then gives her the energy to eat something better for her. The only fruit she can manage is raspberries, grapes and blueberries. It's not really ideal.

The diabetic nurse said that if that was all she could manage (the carrot cake type thing) then she should eat that, but it was better if she could manage something like soup and bread. Which is what we were doing, but I feel as much in the dark as to how to deal with mum's nutrition problems as I did before, and I'm angry and upset about that. I got more help from my Auntie Pat (type 2 for years and years) who said that mum was eating so little the sugars issue didn't really feature too high and I should just get calories in to her where and when I could. Really I shouldn't be getting more helpful and less wishy washy advice from my aunt, who is not a medical professional than from a nurse with a speciality in that area.

Gah, it's all so complicated :(

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (animals - Tiptoes cat)
It's been a bad day for both mum and me today. She's had the nausea and vomiting and lack of energy that she's been getting frequently from what we now know is the tumour (though I don't know if it's the Primary, the Secondary or both making her like that), so she's spent most of the day asleep (and getting the sweats from the tramadol which the hospital gave her for the pain, which is just the crown on feeling crappy anyway, I would imagine).

On top of that, the hospital have yet to call and tell us when the MRI is going to be, so there's a fair bit of sitting around twiddling thumbs and I'm really struggling with that. When mum's downstairs, as she is a lot, because it's easier for her to breathe and whatnot when sitting in a comfy chair down there than in bed up here, she has the tv on to what she wants, and has the volume up fairly loud, so as a general rule I'm happier elsewhere. In addition, I want my own space very much and so because of all of these factors I've been hiding out in my room (who'd have thought that at 26 and married I would be saying that again?) most of today. I ache from sitting on a bed or a floor all day.

It's also Monday, so I'm furthest away from being home again, and even though it's a short week as far as being away from Ben is concerned, I miss him, and it feels like a very long time before I see him again. I miss our flat, I miss our gerbils, I miss home cooking, I miss our companionable silences.

I'm sorry for the whining, I truly am. I'm very low, mood-wise right now and I just need to vent before it gets too much.

On the upside, I did the computery part of a tesco order for mum (she told me what was needed and I did the typing and ordering of the things), so at least one good thing has been achieved today. And I just remembered that I also called about postal voting, so I suppose that's two. And hopefully tomorrow will be better.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (animals - Tiptoes cat)
It's been a bad day for both mum and me today. She's had the nausea and vomiting and lack of energy that she's been getting frequently from what we now know is the tumour (though I don't know if it's the Primary, the Secondary or both making her like that), so she's spent most of the day asleep (and getting the sweats from the tramadol which the hospital gave her for the pain, which is just the crown on feeling crappy anyway, I would imagine).

On top of that, the hospital have yet to call and tell us when the MRI is going to be, so there's a fair bit of sitting around twiddling thumbs and I'm really struggling with that. When mum's downstairs, as she is a lot, because it's easier for her to breathe and whatnot when sitting in a comfy chair down there than in bed up here, she has the tv on to what she wants, and has the volume up fairly loud, so as a general rule I'm happier elsewhere. In addition, I want my own space very much and so because of all of these factors I've been hiding out in my room (who'd have thought that at 26 and married I would be saying that again?) most of today. I ache from sitting on a bed or a floor all day.

It's also Monday, so I'm furthest away from being home again, and even though it's a short week as far as being away from Ben is concerned, I miss him, and it feels like a very long time before I see him again. I miss our flat, I miss our gerbils, I miss home cooking, I miss our companionable silences.

I'm sorry for the whining, I truly am. I'm very low, mood-wise right now and I just need to vent before it gets too much.

On the upside, I did the computery part of a tesco order for mum (she told me what was needed and I did the typing and ordering of the things), so at least one good thing has been achieved today. And I just remembered that I also called about postal voting, so I suppose that's two. And hopefully tomorrow will be better.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (animals - Tiptoes cat)
It's been a bad day for both mum and me today. She's had the nausea and vomiting and lack of energy that she's been getting frequently from what we now know is the tumour (though I don't know if it's the Primary, the Secondary or both making her like that), so she's spent most of the day asleep (and getting the sweats from the tramadol which the hospital gave her for the pain, which is just the crown on feeling crappy anyway, I would imagine).

On top of that, the hospital have yet to call and tell us when the MRI is going to be, so there's a fair bit of sitting around twiddling thumbs and I'm really struggling with that. When mum's downstairs, as she is a lot, because it's easier for her to breathe and whatnot when sitting in a comfy chair down there than in bed up here, she has the tv on to what she wants, and has the volume up fairly loud, so as a general rule I'm happier elsewhere. In addition, I want my own space very much and so because of all of these factors I've been hiding out in my room (who'd have thought that at 26 and married I would be saying that again?) most of today. I ache from sitting on a bed or a floor all day.

It's also Monday, so I'm furthest away from being home again, and even though it's a short week as far as being away from Ben is concerned, I miss him, and it feels like a very long time before I see him again. I miss our flat, I miss our gerbils, I miss home cooking, I miss our companionable silences.

I'm sorry for the whining, I truly am. I'm very low, mood-wise right now and I just need to vent before it gets too much.

On the upside, I did the computery part of a tesco order for mum (she told me what was needed and I did the typing and ordering of the things), so at least one good thing has been achieved today. And I just remembered that I also called about postal voting, so I suppose that's two. And hopefully tomorrow will be better.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (carebare grumpy sleeping)
The bed came at about 2:30pm and is now built and the room is looking vaguely welcoming, which is good, because next week I'll be sleeping in it for five nights.

Made it home through terrible weather at about 7ish. Was rather grumpy but so glad to be home. My home, with my things and my husband, who had even done my chores so I didn't have anything to do when I got in, which is something I'm more grateful for than I can even express right now.

I'm also incredibly grateful for my friends at the moment who have all been supportive in various ways and I don't know what I'd have done in the last few days without their help. Not having any friends in Croydon is actually one of the hardest things about spending a lot of time at mum's in the last few weeks, and the thing I'm going to really struggle with in the coming months if I continue what will start next week and spend 5 days at mum's and only 2(ish) at home.

I rely on my friends a lot for my sanity, and sometimes it really helps a lot if I can just go out for an afternoon or an evening with them, even if we don't necessarily talk about deep things. The only people I know in Coulsdon/Croydon now are my mum and brother, and it makes getting out more difficult. I'm very dull and find it difficult to be out on my own. I'd much rather have someone to have coffee with, or walk with or whatever. I'm not quite sure yet how I'll find a way around it.

Another thing I need to figure out sooner rather than later is how to make the room I'll be sleeping in a bit more my space and less stark spare room. Starting to wish I hadn't got rid of the posters I had before/during Uni. They'd be a start.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (carebare grumpy sleeping)
The bed came at about 2:30pm and is now built and the room is looking vaguely welcoming, which is good, because next week I'll be sleeping in it for five nights.

Made it home through terrible weather at about 7ish. Was rather grumpy but so glad to be home. My home, with my things and my husband, who had even done my chores so I didn't have anything to do when I got in, which is something I'm more grateful for than I can even express right now.

I'm also incredibly grateful for my friends at the moment who have all been supportive in various ways and I don't know what I'd have done in the last few days without their help. Not having any friends in Croydon is actually one of the hardest things about spending a lot of time at mum's in the last few weeks, and the thing I'm going to really struggle with in the coming months if I continue what will start next week and spend 5 days at mum's and only 2(ish) at home.

I rely on my friends a lot for my sanity, and sometimes it really helps a lot if I can just go out for an afternoon or an evening with them, even if we don't necessarily talk about deep things. The only people I know in Coulsdon/Croydon now are my mum and brother, and it makes getting out more difficult. I'm very dull and find it difficult to be out on my own. I'd much rather have someone to have coffee with, or walk with or whatever. I'm not quite sure yet how I'll find a way around it.

Another thing I need to figure out sooner rather than later is how to make the room I'll be sleeping in a bit more my space and less stark spare room. Starting to wish I hadn't got rid of the posters I had before/during Uni. They'd be a start.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (carebare grumpy sleeping)
The bed came at about 2:30pm and is now built and the room is looking vaguely welcoming, which is good, because next week I'll be sleeping in it for five nights.

Made it home through terrible weather at about 7ish. Was rather grumpy but so glad to be home. My home, with my things and my husband, who had even done my chores so I didn't have anything to do when I got in, which is something I'm more grateful for than I can even express right now.

I'm also incredibly grateful for my friends at the moment who have all been supportive in various ways and I don't know what I'd have done in the last few days without their help. Not having any friends in Croydon is actually one of the hardest things about spending a lot of time at mum's in the last few weeks, and the thing I'm going to really struggle with in the coming months if I continue what will start next week and spend 5 days at mum's and only 2(ish) at home.

I rely on my friends a lot for my sanity, and sometimes it really helps a lot if I can just go out for an afternoon or an evening with them, even if we don't necessarily talk about deep things. The only people I know in Coulsdon/Croydon now are my mum and brother, and it makes getting out more difficult. I'm very dull and find it difficult to be out on my own. I'd much rather have someone to have coffee with, or walk with or whatever. I'm not quite sure yet how I'll find a way around it.

Another thing I need to figure out sooner rather than later is how to make the room I'll be sleeping in a bit more my space and less stark spare room. Starting to wish I hadn't got rid of the posters I had before/during Uni. They'd be a start.

ETA: 12/07/11 No longer filtered
lizziec: (apod - milky-way eating)
I suppose, really, that I should have taken photos of each stage of this, because it was a mammoth undertaking. I didn't though, so you'll all have to put up with boring old text :)

When we first moved in to our flat, Ben's parents very kindly gave us an old sofa of theirs. It was leather and a little worn, but basically sound, very comfy and, most importantly as we had no money after buying essentials like a fridge freezer, was free.

Cut to four and a half years later, and the sofa was rather a lot worse for wear. The leather had cracked in the seats, and so was held together from the inside with duct tape. One of the struts had gone, so it was saggy and the lining under the cushions had split open so stuff kept falling right down. Basically it was on borrowed time before it completely disintegrated and we knew it.

With that in mind, we went Sofa shopping, and after much deliberation, we found one we liked at Harveys (the three seater "Clarissa") and having measured our hall, our old sofa and the new one, we were certain we could fit it in. The dimensions were all within a couple of centimetres. So we ordered it, we paid for it and we waited 4-6 weeks for it to be delivered.

And right now I'm so unbelievably pissed off because I finished writing this, only to lose it because LJ logged me out and I'm an idiot who didn't copy paste it before logging back in so LJ *helpfully* restored the last saved draft which involved losing over three quarters of what I had already written. So the rest of this is a rewrite of what I've already done once and my heart isn't really in it.

So four to six weeks later we moved everything in the flat around so that we could fit the new sofa in. This was no mean feat, because our flat has been full to bursting for the last two years or so and we've just been coming up with ever more inventive ways to fit things in. This particular moving of stuff involved taking everything out of the hall - two bookcases full of books, computers and assorted internet paraphernalia, coats and shoes, printer, ironing board and clothes horse, fan... No, our hall is not some sort of Tardis, just very packed ;) It also involved moving two bookcases full of books and another two cd racks from the living room so that the doorway was clear. For the record, 3 of the bookcases ended up in the bedroom where they now form a sort of library ;) The CD towers are still there as well. The layout made enough sense that we decided not to move the stuff back.

Anyway, after lots of hard work to clear a path, we then had to get the old sofa out (which we did and put it safely in the garage for a couple of days) so we could get the new one in. I arranged for it to be picked up by the Council, who did so on the morning of our next rubbish collection, which was handily on the morning the new sofa was being delivered. I think that by the title, and this statement, most of you can guess that what happened next was not straightforward. Really I should have known better than to arrange for our old sofa to go before we had the new one safe and sound in our living room. Alas. I am an idiot who bites her thumb at the fates ;)

The sofa delivery men arrived about an hour or so after the council men had come to get the old sofa. They came up to see what obstacles were in their way and the first and clearly senior man declared that the new sofa would not fit. We had measured everything and were convinced he was wrong, so he brought up the sofa to prove it. And he was right. We had the sofa men try getting it in several ways. We tried getting it in several ways. There was no getting around the fact that this shiny new sofa just would not fit. The problem lay in two places. First, we have a funny corner you have to get around to get into the living room, and this prevented us lying it down horizontally and sliding it through the door that way, and it was too high to get in vertically. Secondly, although this sofa was more or less the same size as the old one the edges are all hard, whereas they were squishy on the old one, so they squished to get round awkward things. There was literally no more than 2cm between us and the sofa getting through the door into the space where it would certainly fit.

The delivery men suggested two possible solutions. Option A involved them leaving the sofa with us and (they suggested) swapping our bedroom with our living room. Ben and I quickly realised that that plan was a no-go for a number of reasons. Option B was that they took the sofa with them back to Harveys. Option B was at this point looking the most palatable, so Ben called Harveys to see what they could offer us if we chose to do that. I say he called - he had to, because I was having a freak out (hysterical tears) by this point, convinced that it was all my fault because I'd taken the initial measurements, and that I could never have nice things and I never would again because I'd messed the sofa business up so badly. I think that this is probably an example of what my old Mental Health Nurse would have called "Catastrophic Thinking".

Anyway, Ben called Harveys and they told us they could give us 50% of what we paid for the sofa if we returned it because making it fit was our responsibility and if it didn't they weren't actually obliged to give us anything. They said that they would then take a £50 charge out of the store credit to cover the cost of bringing the sofa back from our flat, where it was currently vertical on one end in the hall, and then when we picked a new sofa they'd take another £50 for delivering a new one. Basically, when all was said and done, we were looking at getting nothing back and essentially losing all the money that we had paid for the perfectly good sofa in our hall.

After this call, we decided to pick Option C, which was to keep the thing and figure out something. And Ben had the beginnings of a Very Cunning Plan.

The shiny Sofa sat in our hall for the best part of a week while Ben gathered his plans and tools. This involved borrowing a Jigsaw (the power tool, not the puzzle) from dmc, buying lots of supplies from toolstation, and an electric screwdriver from B&Q. Finally, his plan was ready to be put in to action, and to be honest, it scared me rather a lot, but I'd been sitting on a beanbag whenever I was in the living room for the best part of week by this time and ready for drastic action that could have ended with severed fingers.

It turns out that the new sofa basically has a box made of MDF or chipboard or something at each end where the arms are, which aren't structural. So Ben picked the staples out of the fabric at the bottom of the sofa at one end, which was pretty difficult because the staples are cheap and kept breaking, then peeled the fabric back ([Edit] Ben says this staple remover deserves an honourable mention in this story. Possibly because he couldn't have managed the staples without it. Anyway, if you need a staple remover, that one is awesome, apparently).

Next he used the jigsaw to cut the box about half way down (this was higher than Ben is tall, and where the plan could have ended with severed fingers as he was jigsawing above his head, and possibly the scariest thing I have ever witnessed), we slid it into the living room as it now fitted under the door easily being about half a foot shorter than it had been previously and then Ben put the end back together with mending plates. It took forever. There is literally barely a millimetre of the join that is not covered by one mending plate or another. After this was done, he pulled the fabric back over the end and stapled it down again. Apart from the alarming creaking noise it made the first time it was sat on, it's not moved or made a noise since, and we've now been using it for 4 months or so. Ben thinks it may be stronger now with all the mending plates than it was before.

Regardless, it's now in, and not being moved again until we move. What we'll do then, I don't know. Possibly the procedure in reverse, or maybe leaving it for the removal company to try and get it out while scratching our heads and sounding bewildered that it doesn't fit given it went in.

I tell this story largely as a cautionary tale to anyone even considering new furniture. Measure, measure, measure. And that there is usually a Plan C, even were one doesn't appear to be readily available.


The sofa in situ


When I lost this entry, I got a case of the fuckits and considered giving up. I went and washed up instead and I'm glad I re-wrote it. I got into the swing again, and I think it was worth it.

lizziec: (apod - milky-way eating)
I suppose, really, that I should have taken photos of each stage of this, because it was a mammoth undertaking. I didn't though, so you'll all have to put up with boring old text :)

When we first moved in to our flat, Ben's parents very kindly gave us an old sofa of theirs. It was leather and a little worn, but basically sound, very comfy and, most importantly as we had no money after buying essentials like a fridge freezer, was free.

Cut to four and a half years later, and the sofa was rather a lot worse for wear. The leather had cracked in the seats, and so was held together from the inside with duct tape. One of the struts had gone, so it was saggy and the lining under the cushions had split open so stuff kept falling right down. Basically it was on borrowed time before it completely disintegrated and we knew it.

With that in mind, we went Sofa shopping, and after much deliberation, we found one we liked at Harveys (the three seater "Clarissa") and having measured our hall, our old sofa and the new one, we were certain we could fit it in. The dimensions were all within a couple of centimetres. So we ordered it, we paid for it and we waited 4-6 weeks for it to be delivered.

And right now I'm so unbelievably pissed off because I finished writing this, only to lose it because LJ logged me out and I'm an idiot who didn't copy paste it before logging back in so LJ *helpfully* restored the last saved draft which involved losing over three quarters of what I had already written. So the rest of this is a rewrite of what I've already done once and my heart isn't really in it.

So four to six weeks later we moved everything in the flat around so that we could fit the new sofa in. This was no mean feat, because our flat has been full to bursting for the last two years or so and we've just been coming up with ever more inventive ways to fit things in. This particular moving of stuff involved taking everything out of the hall - two bookcases full of books, computers and assorted internet paraphernalia, coats and shoes, printer, ironing board and clothes horse, fan... No, our hall is not some sort of Tardis, just very packed ;) It also involved moving two bookcases full of books and another two cd racks from the living room so that the doorway was clear. For the record, 3 of the bookcases ended up in the bedroom where they now form a sort of library ;) The CD towers are still there as well. The layout made enough sense that we decided not to move the stuff back.

Anyway, after lots of hard work to clear a path, we then had to get the old sofa out (which we did and put it safely in the garage for a couple of days) so we could get the new one in. I arranged for it to be picked up by the Council, who did so on the morning of our next rubbish collection, which was handily on the morning the new sofa was being delivered. I think that by the title, and this statement, most of you can guess that what happened next was not straightforward. Really I should have known better than to arrange for our old sofa to go before we had the new one safe and sound in our living room. Alas. I am an idiot who bites her thumb at the fates ;)

The sofa delivery men arrived about an hour or so after the council men had come to get the old sofa. They came up to see what obstacles were in their way and the first and clearly senior man declared that the new sofa would not fit. We had measured everything and were convinced he was wrong, so he brought up the sofa to prove it. And he was right. We had the sofa men try getting it in several ways. We tried getting it in several ways. There was no getting around the fact that this shiny new sofa just would not fit. The problem lay in two places. First, we have a funny corner you have to get around to get into the living room, and this prevented us lying it down horizontally and sliding it through the door that way, and it was too high to get in vertically. Secondly, although this sofa was more or less the same size as the old one the edges are all hard, whereas they were squishy on the old one, so they squished to get round awkward things. There was literally no more than 2cm between us and the sofa getting through the door into the space where it would certainly fit.

The delivery men suggested two possible solutions. Option A involved them leaving the sofa with us and (they suggested) swapping our bedroom with our living room. Ben and I quickly realised that that plan was a no-go for a number of reasons. Option B was that they took the sofa with them back to Harveys. Option B was at this point looking the most palatable, so Ben called Harveys to see what they could offer us if we chose to do that. I say he called - he had to, because I was having a freak out (hysterical tears) by this point, convinced that it was all my fault because I'd taken the initial measurements, and that I could never have nice things and I never would again because I'd messed the sofa business up so badly. I think that this is probably an example of what my old Mental Health Nurse would have called "Catastrophic Thinking".

Anyway, Ben called Harveys and they told us they could give us 50% of what we paid for the sofa if we returned it because making it fit was our responsibility and if it didn't they weren't actually obliged to give us anything. They said that they would then take a £50 charge out of the store credit to cover the cost of bringing the sofa back from our flat, where it was currently vertical on one end in the hall, and then when we picked a new sofa they'd take another £50 for delivering a new one. Basically, when all was said and done, we were looking at getting nothing back and essentially losing all the money that we had paid for the perfectly good sofa in our hall.

After this call, we decided to pick Option C, which was to keep the thing and figure out something. And Ben had the beginnings of a Very Cunning Plan.

The shiny Sofa sat in our hall for the best part of a week while Ben gathered his plans and tools. This involved borrowing a Jigsaw (the power tool, not the puzzle) from dmc, buying lots of supplies from toolstation, and an electric screwdriver from B&Q. Finally, his plan was ready to be put in to action, and to be honest, it scared me rather a lot, but I'd been sitting on a beanbag whenever I was in the living room for the best part of week by this time and ready for drastic action that could have ended with severed fingers.

It turns out that the new sofa basically has a box made of MDF or chipboard or something at each end where the arms are, which aren't structural. So Ben picked the staples out of the fabric at the bottom of the sofa at one end, which was pretty difficult because the staples are cheap and kept breaking, then peeled the fabric back ([Edit] Ben says this staple remover deserves an honourable mention in this story. Possibly because he couldn't have managed the staples without it. Anyway, if you need a staple remover, that one is awesome, apparently).

Next he used the jigsaw to cut the box about half way down (this was higher than Ben is tall, and where the plan could have ended with severed fingers as he was jigsawing above his head, and possibly the scariest thing I have ever witnessed), we slid it into the living room as it now fitted under the door easily being about half a foot shorter than it had been previously and then Ben put the end back together with mending plates. It took forever. There is literally barely a millimetre of the join that is not covered by one mending plate or another. After this was done, he pulled the fabric back over the end and stapled it down again. Apart from the alarming creaking noise it made the first time it was sat on, it's not moved or made a noise since, and we've now been using it for 4 months or so. Ben thinks it may be stronger now with all the mending plates than it was before.

Regardless, it's now in, and not being moved again until we move. What we'll do then, I don't know. Possibly the procedure in reverse, or maybe leaving it for the removal company to try and get it out while scratching our heads and sounding bewildered that it doesn't fit given it went in.

I tell this story largely as a cautionary tale to anyone even considering new furniture. Measure, measure, measure. And that there is usually a Plan C, even were one doesn't appear to be readily available.


The sofa in situ


When I lost this entry, I got a case of the fuckits and considered giving up. I went and washed up instead and I'm glad I re-wrote it. I got into the swing again, and I think it was worth it.

lizziec: (apod - milky-way eating)
I suppose, really, that I should have taken photos of each stage of this, because it was a mammoth undertaking. I didn't though, so you'll all have to put up with boring old text :)

When we first moved in to our flat, Ben's parents very kindly gave us an old sofa of theirs. It was leather and a little worn, but basically sound, very comfy and, most importantly as we had no money after buying essentials like a fridge freezer, was free.

Cut to four and a half years later, and the sofa was rather a lot worse for wear. The leather had cracked in the seats, and so was held together from the inside with duct tape. One of the struts had gone, so it was saggy and the lining under the cushions had split open so stuff kept falling right down. Basically it was on borrowed time before it completely disintegrated and we knew it.

With that in mind, we went Sofa shopping, and after much deliberation, we found one we liked at Harveys (the three seater "Clarissa") and having measured our hall, our old sofa and the new one, we were certain we could fit it in. The dimensions were all within a couple of centimetres. So we ordered it, we paid for it and we waited 4-6 weeks for it to be delivered.

And right now I'm so unbelievably pissed off because I finished writing this, only to lose it because LJ logged me out and I'm an idiot who didn't copy paste it before logging back in so LJ *helpfully* restored the last saved draft which involved losing over three quarters of what I had already written. So the rest of this is a rewrite of what I've already done once and my heart isn't really in it.

So four to six weeks later we moved everything in the flat around so that we could fit the new sofa in. This was no mean feat, because our flat has been full to bursting for the last two years or so and we've just been coming up with ever more inventive ways to fit things in. This particular moving of stuff involved taking everything out of the hall - two bookcases full of books, computers and assorted internet paraphernalia, coats and shoes, printer, ironing board and clothes horse, fan... No, our hall is not some sort of Tardis, just very packed ;) It also involved moving two bookcases full of books and another two cd racks from the living room so that the doorway was clear. For the record, 3 of the bookcases ended up in the bedroom where they now form a sort of library ;) The CD towers are still there as well. The layout made enough sense that we decided not to move the stuff back.

Anyway, after lots of hard work to clear a path, we then had to get the old sofa out (which we did and put it safely in the garage for a couple of days) so we could get the new one in. I arranged for it to be picked up by the Council, who did so on the morning of our next rubbish collection, which was handily on the morning the new sofa was being delivered. I think that by the title, and this statement, most of you can guess that what happened next was not straightforward. Really I should have known better than to arrange for our old sofa to go before we had the new one safe and sound in our living room. Alas. I am an idiot who bites her thumb at the fates ;)

The sofa delivery men arrived about an hour or so after the council men had come to get the old sofa. They came up to see what obstacles were in their way and the first and clearly senior man declared that the new sofa would not fit. We had measured everything and were convinced he was wrong, so he brought up the sofa to prove it. And he was right. We had the sofa men try getting it in several ways. We tried getting it in several ways. There was no getting around the fact that this shiny new sofa just would not fit. The problem lay in two places. First, we have a funny corner you have to get around to get into the living room, and this prevented us lying it down horizontally and sliding it through the door that way, and it was too high to get in vertically. Secondly, although this sofa was more or less the same size as the old one the edges are all hard, whereas they were squishy on the old one, so they squished to get round awkward things. There was literally no more than 2cm between us and the sofa getting through the door into the space where it would certainly fit.

The delivery men suggested two possible solutions. Option A involved them leaving the sofa with us and (they suggested) swapping our bedroom with our living room. Ben and I quickly realised that that plan was a no-go for a number of reasons. Option B was that they took the sofa with them back to Harveys. Option B was at this point looking the most palatable, so Ben called Harveys to see what they could offer us if we chose to do that. I say he called - he had to, because I was having a freak out (hysterical tears) by this point, convinced that it was all my fault because I'd taken the initial measurements, and that I could never have nice things and I never would again because I'd messed the sofa business up so badly. I think that this is probably an example of what my old Mental Health Nurse would have called "Catastrophic Thinking".

Anyway, Ben called Harveys and they told us they could give us 50% of what we paid for the sofa if we returned it because making it fit was our responsibility and if it didn't they weren't actually obliged to give us anything. They said that they would then take a £50 charge out of the store credit to cover the cost of bringing the sofa back from our flat, where it was currently vertical on one end in the hall, and then when we picked a new sofa they'd take another £50 for delivering a new one. Basically, when all was said and done, we were looking at getting nothing back and essentially losing all the money that we had paid for the perfectly good sofa in our hall.

After this call, we decided to pick Option C, which was to keep the thing and figure out something. And Ben had the beginnings of a Very Cunning Plan.

The shiny Sofa sat in our hall for the best part of a week while Ben gathered his plans and tools. This involved borrowing a Jigsaw (the power tool, not the puzzle) from dmc, buying lots of supplies from toolstation, and an electric screwdriver from B&Q. Finally, his plan was ready to be put in to action, and to be honest, it scared me rather a lot, but I'd been sitting on a beanbag whenever I was in the living room for the best part of week by this time and ready for drastic action that could have ended with severed fingers.

It turns out that the new sofa basically has a box made of MDF or chipboard or something at each end where the arms are, which aren't structural. So Ben picked the staples out of the fabric at the bottom of the sofa at one end, which was pretty difficult because the staples are cheap and kept breaking, then peeled the fabric back ([Edit] Ben says this staple remover deserves an honourable mention in this story. Possibly because he couldn't have managed the staples without it. Anyway, if you need a staple remover, that one is awesome, apparently).

Next he used the jigsaw to cut the box about half way down (this was higher than Ben is tall, and where the plan could have ended with severed fingers as he was jigsawing above his head, and possibly the scariest thing I have ever witnessed), we slid it into the living room as it now fitted under the door easily being about half a foot shorter than it had been previously and then Ben put the end back together with mending plates. It took forever. There is literally barely a millimetre of the join that is not covered by one mending plate or another. After this was done, he pulled the fabric back over the end and stapled it down again. Apart from the alarming creaking noise it made the first time it was sat on, it's not moved or made a noise since, and we've now been using it for 4 months or so. Ben thinks it may be stronger now with all the mending plates than it was before.

Regardless, it's now in, and not being moved again until we move. What we'll do then, I don't know. Possibly the procedure in reverse, or maybe leaving it for the removal company to try and get it out while scratching our heads and sounding bewildered that it doesn't fit given it went in.

I tell this story largely as a cautionary tale to anyone even considering new furniture. Measure, measure, measure. And that there is usually a Plan C, even were one doesn't appear to be readily available.


The sofa in situ


When I lost this entry, I got a case of the fuckits and considered giving up. I went and washed up instead and I'm glad I re-wrote it. I got into the swing again, and I think it was worth it.
lizziec: (potterpuffs - dumbledore flesh wound)
This weekend was very nice. We started it celebrating [livejournal.com profile] nert's birthday at Super Noodles (Happy Birthday!), which was great fun, then up early on Saturday for [livejournal.com profile] bencc and I (and a passenger) to bumble down to Dorset for a pancake party at Stotty's place.

Sadly we were rather delayed by a problem with one of our tyres, but Ben managed to fix it and we got away having not lost too much time. Ben's learning to drive and so we went via some very beautiful (if roundabout) A-Roads so that he could get some practice in (he did the majority of the driving and very well :)). We had lunch at Ditchling, near Brighton, on the way. It was Ben's choice, and he picked there as he's been wanting to show me the view from there since London to Brighton last June. The view was well worth it, and quite amazing.

In Dorset we had a really lovely time with various people, and ate many pancakes, which were expertly cooked by the host. Got back not so long ago and I'm tired now, but very forfilled. Weekend with friends was lovely :)

To finish, a quiz, stolen from [livejournal.com profile] red_pill ages ago.

Your result for The Golden Compass Daemon Test...

Shy Secretive Soul

You are very shy, and social situations make you nervous and tend to exhaust you. You are most comfortable at home, in your own space, where you feel safe. You have a shaky self-esteem, and you feel uncomfortable and shy in strange social situations. The offhand comments that people make can sometimes hurt you. You rarely step up to your own defense, however. You hate confrontation and don't like to make a fuss.

You are uncomfortable discussing your feelings. You often will brush off personal questions with a shrug, a joke or even a lie, rather than confess what is really in your heart. You are especially distrustful of strangers, and you work to hide your sensitive spots from them. While you open up more with your loved ones, even your closest friends can hurt your feelings and may never even know that it happened. There are certain lines, however, that they aren't allowed to cross. When that happens, you tend to snap, and surprise everyone with the vehemence of your outburst.

You will tell white lies or avoid the whole truth in order to help keep the peace. What is the point of hurtful truths that will only make your friends and family unhappy, or that might cause a fight? This means, however, that your own feelings get hurt more, because people don't know how you really feel about it.

Your daemon would represent your shy, sensitive and somewhat distrustful nature. He or she would probably ride on your shoulder or in your pocket, and whisper comforting things in your ear.

Form suggestions:
Spider, Opossum, Lady Bug, Snake

Take The Golden Compass Daemon Test at HelloQuizzy

lizziec: (potterpuffs - dumbledore flesh wound)
This weekend was very nice. We started it celebrating [livejournal.com profile] nert's birthday at Super Noodles (Happy Birthday!), which was great fun, then up early on Saturday for [livejournal.com profile] bencc and I (and a passenger) to bumble down to Dorset for a pancake party at Stotty's place.

Sadly we were rather delayed by a problem with one of our tyres, but Ben managed to fix it and we got away having not lost too much time. Ben's learning to drive and so we went via some very beautiful (if roundabout) A-Roads so that he could get some practice in (he did the majority of the driving and very well :)). We had lunch at Ditchling, near Brighton, on the way. It was Ben's choice, and he picked there as he's been wanting to show me the view from there since London to Brighton last June. The view was well worth it, and quite amazing.

In Dorset we had a really lovely time with various people, and ate many pancakes, which were expertly cooked by the host. Got back not so long ago and I'm tired now, but very forfilled. Weekend with friends was lovely :)

To finish, a quiz, stolen from [livejournal.com profile] red_pill ages ago.

Your result for The Golden Compass Daemon Test...

Shy Secretive Soul

You are very shy, and social situations make you nervous and tend to exhaust you. You are most comfortable at home, in your own space, where you feel safe. You have a shaky self-esteem, and you feel uncomfortable and shy in strange social situations. The offhand comments that people make can sometimes hurt you. You rarely step up to your own defense, however. You hate confrontation and don't like to make a fuss.

You are uncomfortable discussing your feelings. You often will brush off personal questions with a shrug, a joke or even a lie, rather than confess what is really in your heart. You are especially distrustful of strangers, and you work to hide your sensitive spots from them. While you open up more with your loved ones, even your closest friends can hurt your feelings and may never even know that it happened. There are certain lines, however, that they aren't allowed to cross. When that happens, you tend to snap, and surprise everyone with the vehemence of your outburst.

You will tell white lies or avoid the whole truth in order to help keep the peace. What is the point of hurtful truths that will only make your friends and family unhappy, or that might cause a fight? This means, however, that your own feelings get hurt more, because people don't know how you really feel about it.

Your daemon would represent your shy, sensitive and somewhat distrustful nature. He or she would probably ride on your shoulder or in your pocket, and whisper comforting things in your ear.

Form suggestions:
Spider, Opossum, Lady Bug, Snake

Take The Golden Compass Daemon Test at HelloQuizzy

lizziec: (potterpuffs - dumbledore flesh wound)
This weekend was very nice. We started it celebrating [livejournal.com profile] nert's birthday at Super Noodles (Happy Birthday!), which was great fun, then up early on Saturday for [livejournal.com profile] bencc and I (and a passenger) to bumble down to Dorset for a pancake party at Stotty's place.

Sadly we were rather delayed by a problem with one of our tyres, but Ben managed to fix it and we got away having not lost too much time. Ben's learning to drive and so we went via some very beautiful (if roundabout) A-Roads so that he could get some practice in (he did the majority of the driving and very well :)). We had lunch at Ditchling, near Brighton, on the way. It was Ben's choice, and he picked there as he's been wanting to show me the view from there since London to Brighton last June. The view was well worth it, and quite amazing.

In Dorset we had a really lovely time with various people, and ate many pancakes, which were expertly cooked by the host. Got back not so long ago and I'm tired now, but very forfilled. Weekend with friends was lovely :)

To finish, a quiz, stolen from [livejournal.com profile] red_pill ages ago.

Your result for The Golden Compass Daemon Test...

Shy Secretive Soul

You are very shy, and social situations make you nervous and tend to exhaust you. You are most comfortable at home, in your own space, where you feel safe. You have a shaky self-esteem, and you feel uncomfortable and shy in strange social situations. The offhand comments that people make can sometimes hurt you. You rarely step up to your own defense, however. You hate confrontation and don't like to make a fuss.

You are uncomfortable discussing your feelings. You often will brush off personal questions with a shrug, a joke or even a lie, rather than confess what is really in your heart. You are especially distrustful of strangers, and you work to hide your sensitive spots from them. While you open up more with your loved ones, even your closest friends can hurt your feelings and may never even know that it happened. There are certain lines, however, that they aren't allowed to cross. When that happens, you tend to snap, and surprise everyone with the vehemence of your outburst.

You will tell white lies or avoid the whole truth in order to help keep the peace. What is the point of hurtful truths that will only make your friends and family unhappy, or that might cause a fight? This means, however, that your own feelings get hurt more, because people don't know how you really feel about it.

Your daemon would represent your shy, sensitive and somewhat distrustful nature. He or she would probably ride on your shoulder or in your pocket, and whisper comforting things in your ear.

Form suggestions:
Spider, Opossum, Lady Bug, Snake

Take The Golden Compass Daemon Test at HelloQuizzy

lizziec: (Chalet School)
Yesterday was rather busy by my standards. It was the 6 year anniversary of Ben and I getting together and we went out for dinner at Cafe Des Amis in Canterbury - the first time I've been and it was yummy. I would highly recommend, though wish you better luck in who you sit next to. The people next to us started arguing and walked out half way through the starter. Exciting!

Ben was very sweet and got me chocolate, Season 3 of ER and some flowers. It was lovely and the flowers look so cheerful :)

We ended up in town in the afternoon because he had the day off and I needed (was overdue) an eyetest and wanted him to come so I had some advice on what glasses to pick afterwards. Even if my prescription had remained the same, I needed new glasses anyway.

Sooooo... previous eye test.

New eye test:
(Sph is my short sight, Cyl is my astigmatism)

Right eye
Sph: -1.75
Cyl: -1.00
Axis 20

Left eye
Sph: -2.50
Cyl: -1.25
Axis: 180

So my astigmatism is marginally better in my left eye, and my short sight marginally better in my right eye, but this eye test has pretty much confirmed that my sight is settling down, which is nice. I suspect, short of laser eye surgery I won't have 20:20 without glasses, but I'm pretty pleased that it's at least not really getting worse any more.

It turns out that with glasses I have superhuman sight! BWhahahahahaha - well, what I mean is, with my new glasses I have better than 20:20 vision (two notches better apparently). It's a pity that without them everything is blurry :(

Will post pics of me with new glasses when I get them (on Thursday). These are them (and these are my new sunglasses). It's a bit scary how fast money disappears when you buy an eyetest and new glasses (even on 2 for 1).
lizziec: (Chalet School)
Yesterday was rather busy by my standards. It was the 6 year anniversary of Ben and I getting together and we went out for dinner at Cafe Des Amis in Canterbury - the first time I've been and it was yummy. I would highly recommend, though wish you better luck in who you sit next to. The people next to us started arguing and walked out half way through the starter. Exciting!

Ben was very sweet and got me chocolate, Season 3 of ER and some flowers. It was lovely and the flowers look so cheerful :)

We ended up in town in the afternoon because he had the day off and I needed (was overdue) an eyetest and wanted him to come so I had some advice on what glasses to pick afterwards. Even if my prescription had remained the same, I needed new glasses anyway.

Sooooo... previous eye test.

New eye test:
(Sph is my short sight, Cyl is my astigmatism)

Right eye
Sph: -1.75
Cyl: -1.00
Axis 20

Left eye
Sph: -2.50
Cyl: -1.25
Axis: 180

So my astigmatism is marginally better in my left eye, and my short sight marginally better in my right eye, but this eye test has pretty much confirmed that my sight is settling down, which is nice. I suspect, short of laser eye surgery I won't have 20:20 without glasses, but I'm pretty pleased that it's at least not really getting worse any more.

It turns out that with glasses I have superhuman sight! BWhahahahahaha - well, what I mean is, with my new glasses I have better than 20:20 vision (two notches better apparently). It's a pity that without them everything is blurry :(

Will post pics of me with new glasses when I get them (on Thursday). These are them (and these are my new sunglasses). It's a bit scary how fast money disappears when you buy an eyetest and new glasses (even on 2 for 1).
lizziec: (Chalet School)
Yesterday was rather busy by my standards. It was the 6 year anniversary of Ben and I getting together and we went out for dinner at Cafe Des Amis in Canterbury - the first time I've been and it was yummy. I would highly recommend, though wish you better luck in who you sit next to. The people next to us started arguing and walked out half way through the starter. Exciting!

Ben was very sweet and got me chocolate, Season 3 of ER and some flowers. It was lovely and the flowers look so cheerful :)

We ended up in town in the afternoon because he had the day off and I needed (was overdue) an eyetest and wanted him to come so I had some advice on what glasses to pick afterwards. Even if my prescription had remained the same, I needed new glasses anyway.

Sooooo... previous eye test.

New eye test:
(Sph is my short sight, Cyl is my astigmatism)

Right eye
Sph: -1.75
Cyl: -1.00
Axis 20

Left eye
Sph: -2.50
Cyl: -1.25
Axis: 180

So my astigmatism is marginally better in my left eye, and my short sight marginally better in my right eye, but this eye test has pretty much confirmed that my sight is settling down, which is nice. I suspect, short of laser eye surgery I won't have 20:20 without glasses, but I'm pretty pleased that it's at least not really getting worse any more.

It turns out that with glasses I have superhuman sight! BWhahahahahaha - well, what I mean is, with my new glasses I have better than 20:20 vision (two notches better apparently). It's a pity that without them everything is blurry :(

Will post pics of me with new glasses when I get them (on Thursday). These are them (and these are my new sunglasses). It's a bit scary how fast money disappears when you buy an eyetest and new glasses (even on 2 for 1).
lizziec: (npower - orbs wot ben made for me)
There's still snow here today, not as much as most of you but a good inch or so, and more is falling now, meaning UKC is closing at 2pm, and a couple of schools are closing now that were open earlier due to worsening conditions. Our stairs, which have been swept and salted twice since yesterday are overwhelmed with snow again. It's all rather exciting ;)

For readers elsewhere I should explain that here in the UK, especially in the South East corner (and I'm almost as south and east as you can get) we don't usually get snow, especially snow that settles enough to do stuff in due to the jet stream which keeps Britain warm, despite it being on the same longitude as Moscow (I believe). So when it does snow and settles it causes chaos ;)

Our excitement this morning was doubled (or more!) by being able to have a proper play with [livejournal.com profile] benc's Christmas present, Lego Technic set 8275, a Motorized Bulldozer in the snow.

Research suggested it would work very well in the snow, as there are videos of the Lego development team testing one of the development models in the snow, but we still wanted to have a play ourselves. This most recent (and heavy) snow has given us the perfect opportunity.

So we did. Here are the videos to prove it!

First [livejournal.com profile] benc had a go while I filmed:


Then I drove it while [livejournal.com profile] benc filmed:


Picture of ben playing with his shiny )

I think I can safely say that a good time was had by all :)

lizziec: (npower - orbs wot ben made for me)
There's still snow here today, not as much as most of you but a good inch or so, and more is falling now, meaning UKC is closing at 2pm, and a couple of schools are closing now that were open earlier due to worsening conditions. Our stairs, which have been swept and salted twice since yesterday are overwhelmed with snow again. It's all rather exciting ;)

For readers elsewhere I should explain that here in the UK, especially in the South East corner (and I'm almost as south and east as you can get) we don't usually get snow, especially snow that settles enough to do stuff in due to the jet stream which keeps Britain warm, despite it being on the same longitude as Moscow (I believe). So when it does snow and settles it causes chaos ;)

Our excitement this morning was doubled (or more!) by being able to have a proper play with [livejournal.com profile] benc's Christmas present, Lego Technic set 8275, a Motorized Bulldozer in the snow.

Research suggested it would work very well in the snow, as there are videos of the Lego development team testing one of the development models in the snow, but we still wanted to have a play ourselves. This most recent (and heavy) snow has given us the perfect opportunity.

So we did. Here are the videos to prove it!

First [livejournal.com profile] benc had a go while I filmed:


Then I drove it while [livejournal.com profile] benc filmed:


Picture of ben playing with his shiny )

I think I can safely say that a good time was had by all :)

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