Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Cancer Schmancer

I'm not much one for spilling too much stuff on the blog or writing too much about members of my family. Not least because they'd all kill me.

I'm making an exception this time though - for a very special little boy named Frank. He's my cousin's son and he's two. A right little ray of sunshine and a cheeky chops at the same time.

Unfortunately back in February, what started off as a swollen eye turned out to be a devastating diagnosis of Neuroblastoma. Yup. After a few weeks of everyone telling my cousin not to worry, he'd be OK etc (as you do), her worst fears came true. And it's not just any old cancer (if there is such a thing). Nope. Only about a hundred children a year are diagnosed and they are usually under five years old.

Frank has already had 80 hours of chemo and surgery. He is now undergoing more high dose chemo, then looks forward to radio therapy, stem cell transplant surgery then immunotherapy. Sadly, almost half of neuroblastomas will return and the children need further treatment.

The good news is that there's a vaccine that can help prevent a relapse. The bad news is that it's not funded by the NHS and it's not available in the UK. The cost to take a child to the US for treatment (travel and treatment) is a staggering £200,000 ($260,000).

His parents have set up a fund-raising page, and they are trying to raise that amount in ten months, which is when Frank will need the vaccine. The fund-raising is being done through the Bradley Lowery foundation which is a registered charity in the UK. In the five days since the page has been live, the response from friends and acquaintances has been truly amazing. We need to keep the momentum going though, as we are only at 3% of the amount needed to give Frank the best chance.

So - I'm pleading. If you have a spare bit of coin, please consider donating to Frank's Fight. If not, please help spread the word for this gorgeous little boy.

Thank you my friends. 

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

The Right Way to Procrastinate

Did you know there's a right way to procrastinate? Me neither. I am a bit of a one for procrastination, even though I manage to give the impression that I'm a do-er. It works for me so I don't feel too guilty, but now I don't have to. 

Pop over to my new bloggy collaboration to read more about Procrasti-cleaning. 

Thursday, August 2, 2018

Moving - The Mental Challenges

So, we're in. Almost settled. Well, it's a bit of a sliding scale really isn't it?

I mean, almost everything is out of boxes, and the things we dragged all the way from the States last year and left in boxes, are still in boxes. But hey - they made it here. One of these days I will rip them open and see what treasures lie there. (Obviously superfluous to needs since they haven't seen the light of day in well, 380 days.)

The first mental challenge is where to put everything. This kitchen has more cabinets than the last one, and though we don't have an awful lot of stuff now, we still managed to run out of space before half of said stuff was unboxed. Trick is not to alot one whole shelf to a salad bowl I suppose. Sigh. (Looks at Ball & Chain accusingly.)

The second mental challenge is believing you'll get to the finish line. Every time I move I forget just how knackering it really is. Walking round all day with single items in your hand, trying to find the appropriate drawer/shelf/other box. I had my I-phone in my back pocket, with its little Heart icon that counts your steps. By mid-day I had easily beaten the 10,000 step challenge and apparently had climbed the equivalent of fourteen flights of stairs. And it felt like it. After two days of putting things away, I lay on the sofa, Roman-style and waived my son and spouse off to the local pasta place. Last thing I could be bothered to do was put lippy on and sit up straight in public.

Last but definitely not least-ly, is the builders. Oh yes, not only am I trying to set up a home, but we have builders around all day, every day. The landlord (we are renting - long story involving accidental lapsing of previous lease) had promised to update our two bathrooms before we moved in. I thought it was a tough ambitious at the time,(about a month before we moved in), but I had no idea how prescient I was. One week later, the ensuite/master bath isn't complete and we still have another complete gut job of the family bathroom. I have banned them from coming near the place this weekend as my cousin and family are staying.

In case it escapes you, having four or five people in your house all day means you're stuck in the house. All our stuff is now here, and while it's not a trust question with the crew, the front door is wide open all day and they are upstairs. Making huge amounts of noise. Were someone nefarious to walk in, they could have stripped the downstairs bare before anyone noticed.

And the poor dog. While she has given up any attempt to guard the house, she is very stressed and not to be left on her own with strangers. It's not fair on her and needless to say, at the end of the day, she's a stressed dog, so.....

So yes. It's all a bit challenging, in a very first world sort of way. This too shall pass.

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