Approaching the end of the year, we tend to look back to see how it went. My tendency given the events of 2013: Don’t let the door of time hit you in the calendar ass on your way out! On the other hand, we’re still kicking some pancreas so we’ll call that a 2013 victory and make the best of it. We’d rather focus on what happens next.  Here are the latest outcomes: On Friday the 13th, we tested folklore by scheduling Sherri’s endoscopy to replace a stent and take a peek inside. Despite being under general anesthesia, she came out of this procedure relatively alert and we were on our way back home at 10:30 AM. Maybe two 13’s on the same date (12/13/13) cancel each other out! Wednesday was the CT scan, and we are still “seeing the shrink” as the tumors continue to decrease in size and number. The main pancreatic tumor remains stable (which is good enough), while the liver shows fairly dramatic decreases and the lung spots are undetectable! By Thursday, Sherri was feeling good enough that they went ahead and gave her another dose of the poison cocktail. Some of the side effects are getting more pronounced as the chemo accumulates, but they are manageable and at this point the main concern is keeping an eye on declining blood counts (especially white cells that are dropping close to minimum levels). All in all, it’s been a positive couple of weeks.

Now it’s the first day of winter, yet there is a warming trend inside and out. We are celebrating the Christmas season, and with that time comes the opportunity to reconnect with friends and family and to reflect on the meaning of our lives together.  Thanks for hanging out with us this year and for all your support – it has made a huge difference. May we offer you our best wishes for a magical holiday season and a smooth transition out of the 13s and into the 14s!

Family photo Nov 2013

Holiday Greetings from Sherri, Dave, Zia and Anji

As a parting “gift” for the year, here is a new Carol of the Bells lyric. Anyone want to add a few more?

Love from the Coops

Christmas is here!
Keep the list near
Wrap every gift
Kids need a lift

Wait are we done?
Nope, on the run
Lights would be great
Pull out the crate

Fire up a log
Serve up the nog
Prop up a tree
Come let me see

What have you made?
“Be not afraid”
Bells on the cat
Laugh about that

Spice on the stove
Guests just arove
Pie’s almost gone
Bowl games are on

Out for a hike
Trails that we like
Break from the grind
Recharge the mind

Stay up and watch
Ball dropped a notch
Shifting the gear
It’s a New Year!


SV Mechanic

Occasionally, inevitably you will have to take your vehicle to a mechanic. Same thing goes for the vehicle that carries your spirit around all the time — your Spirit Vehicle (SV), if you will. Sherri’s SV is getting some maintenance this week. Today the flow mechanic will be working on the filters with a little acupuncture. This seems to clear the pathways for removing toxins, and has really helped with some of the chemo symptoms. Thanks to good friends who are transporting her, and in a bold act of empathy, getting it done to themselves at the same time. Next, on Friday, Sherri will be back in the endoscopy suite at FCCC. Apparently it’s time to replace a pipe in the exhaust system so hopefully the mechanic has the Midas touch! This procedure is preventive maintenance on a temporary stent that was placed during the original diagnostic procedure last August (the warranty has expired, but mileage may vary). We have confidence in our mechanic, Dr. “Midnight” Tokar (he’s a jokar, though likely not a smokar…), but it’s never easy so please help me send Sherri some extra thoughts and prayers to give her SV a lift!

Next week is the diagnostics and troubleshooting phase where we get a look at the overall system health. With 8 chemo treatments under her belt, Sherri’s fuel systems are still working reasonably well but she would probably tell you that the horsepower at the wheels seems a little low. We’ll keep you posted on what that looks like after we get a look under the hood.