Wednesday, April 30, 2008

WEDNESDAY, APRIL 30, 2008 05:23 PM, EDT
Another good day...:-)

Remarkable Ally has had another good day. She is trying to eat more, it is really just us figuring out what she wants to eat. She was in a good mood and wanted to move around a lot! She even needed to be saved from falling into her toybox! She is hoping it will be warm enough to spend some time outside tomorrow.

hattip to Renee

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

TUESDAY, APRIL 29, 2008 08:15 PM, EDT
A good day...

Ally had a super day with lots of visitors. Both Grammies were here, plus one Grampa and and an Auntie.

The report was that Ally was in a cheerful mood all day. She is still working on getting her appetite back, but that should come along by the beginning of next week. She is doing better than past rounds of chemo.

MONDAY, APRIL 28, 2008 06:09 PM, EDT
From Ally's Mom...

Ally is home!

She did a good job at the hospital today, she was in a good mood and didn't puke all day!

The nurse will be stopping by on Thursday to take blood, so that means possibly back to DHMC on Friday for a blood transfusion.

The doctors have knocked her blood pressure medication in half and her blood pressure was stable! Yeah, getting closer to just one med!

Ally is doing okay eating as well. I don't want to jinx anything, so I will not say she is eating great.

My first day back at work was okay!

Her Daddy and I both head back to work tomorrow, so Ally will be in the loving hands of Grammy and Grampa.

Monday, April 28, 2008

MONDAY, APRIL 28, 2008 08:50 AM, CDT
From Ally's Mom & Dad...

Ally should be headed home today. We are hoping she won't need any blood today, so we can get out of there before the night hours. Her chemo is scheduled to end at 2:00 this afternoon.

She is still having some tummy issues, but just in the morning, and she is actually eating more this round than in the past. Hopefully she won't lose that much weight.

Mommy is back at work and missing her already.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Photo by Douglas Boyer

Saturday, April 26, 2008


it's green you give me, gardener,
clear rising just beneath the bark
knowing, careful, tender

the world in bloom, from you
to me and back to you
majik in the veins, exchanged

time slips a bit, catches, holds
now, tomorrow, all tomorrows

the morning, glorious and gold
gives way to coming thunder, rain
and all that is green rejoices

26 April 2008

SATURDAY, APRIL 26, 2008 12:10 PM, EDT

Hello again,

Many of her nurses have noticed Ally's super weight gain! Hopefully she won't lose as much this time. Although....
It has been tough keeping food in her. She has already thrown up 3 or 4 times today. She got some benedryl and took a 2 hour nap. We are hoping this will keep her tummy settled for a little while, so we can feed her.

She is full of energy today...we are hoping to see a helicopter fly in, we have already seen a dog out the window.

We are up at the hospital until Monday.

We have a rough timeline of the rest of Ally's treatments:

May 16: 5th Chemo
Late May/Early June: Scans and Surgery
June 6ish: 6th Chemo
Late June: More Scans and tests
Julyish: Stem Cell Transplant in Boston.

Friday, April 25, 2008

*Still* in love with Howard Dean. . . .

FRIDAY, APRIL 25, 2008 07:19 PM, EDT
On Ally's Parents' Wedding Anniversary:

Our 4th anniversary is upon us, and we will be spending the night in seperate buildings!

Ally has had a good first day. She is in good spirits and making all the nurses laugh! She is having a little trouble pooping, but we are hoping to fix that with some laxatives. Her appetite is already down, but that is to be expected, as she is being pumped with over 50 mls of liquid an hour. One of her chemo drugs is orange, and that is going to make her pee and tears be orange for the next few days too! How fun.

There are a lot of other kids on the pedi ward tonight. There are 3 boys who are all over the place! Ally likes to watch them go by in the wagon.

PS We do have a view of the helicopter, but not a great view of the parking lot, BUT we have the big room, which means a bed and not a stupid chair that pulls out!

Oamaru, New Zealand

If it's Thursday, it must be Pogue

From the Desk of David Pogue

"Vampire power" has been bugging me ever since I first heard of it.

It's the juice consumed by electronic gadgets even when they're turned off (also called phantom loads, standby power or leaking electricity). They just sit there, plugged in, sucking electricity, at a cost to you and to the environment. According to the Energy Department, vampire gadgets account for about 25 percent of total residential electricity consumption in the U.S.

Now, these gadgets weren't meant to be evil; they were designed to remain semi-on for good reasons. Lots of them, like TV sets and stereos, have to remain half-awake in case you pick up the remote control and press the On button. Printers, speakers, scanners and other computer gadgets keep one eye open just in case some signal is sent to them from the computer. Hundreds of gadgets remain in standby mode so that their clocks or other status gauges remain up to date.

Nonetheless, vampire power has gone off the rails. Cumulatively, these gadgets cost us, our country and our environment way too much for what they give us.

The eco-magazines cheerfully suggest that we go around our houses unplugging everything every night. That, obviously, is not a suggestion that the masses will be adopting anytime soon.

You can plug certain phantom gadgets into a power strip, of course, and just turn that on or off every night. But that, too, is not a habit most people will stick to for more than about a week.

But come on. If they can put a man on the moon, surely they can come up with an *automatic* solution to phantom power.

APC Power Strip

APC has taken a healthy step in the right direction with its Power-Saving SurgeArrest surge protector power strip. You plug your computer into the master outlet, and you plug your external gadgets (speakers, printer, external hard drive, scanner, monitor) into the three outlets labeled "Controlled by Master."

You can probably see where this is going: when your computer turns off, the strip cuts power to those secondary outlets as well.

But does that mean that you have to shut your computer down fully every time you walk away from the desk? That would be a little silly.

Fortunately, no. The APC strip detects when your Mac or PC goes to *sleep* (standby mode), too. It actually measures the amount of current being drawn by the master outlet. When it drops below 15 watts, the strip realizes that your computer has gone to sleep, and it cuts power to those slave outlets. It works perfectly on my Mac and my PC.

There are also three non-controlled outlets for things that you'll probably want turned on all the time, like your cable modem or router.

It's extremely magical, and satisfying, to watch this in action. At night, my desk area used to twinkle with an assortment of L.E.D. status lights, a painful reminder that all that stuff was sucking down power and polluting the air for absolutely no reason. Not any more. The lights blink off when the computer sleeps.

The kicker: the SurgeArrest goes for about $28 online. Considering you'll save about $25 per year (the company's estimate), it seems like a no-brainer for anyone who cares about money or the environment.

(Note to Mac fans: The PowerKey Pro USB goes even farther. It has six outlets that can be controlled individually through *software* -- that is, you can press a key on your Mac to turn one on or off, or according to a schedule -- or even by telephone. It's $200 at

The trouble is, of course, that these solutions are just for your computer setup. What the world needs is more smart engineering that cuts power to things like your TV setup, your chargers (iPod, camera, cellphone) and your kitchen appliances when *they* no longer need the juice.

For now, though, I can't recommend the Power-Saving SurgeArrest strongly enough. It's beautifully designed, has surge-protection jacks for your phone and fax machine, comes with a $25,000 lifetime guarantee that surges won't fry your gear and pays for itself in a year. Best of all, it does something about global warming without your actually having to *do* anything. That kind of deal doesn't come along very often

Visit David Pogue on the Web at DavidPogue.c

Thursday, April 24, 2008

THURSDAY, APRIL 24, 2008 04:26 PM, EDT
The Ally News...

We are off to the hospital again tomorrow. This round of chemo will keep us there until late Monday (possibly Tuesday). One of the chemo drugs she gets for 72 hours straight. We are a little nervous about how she is going to react to this, and because she is getting it for 72 straight hours.

Ally was very playful today, she is working on standing by herself and even taking a couple of steps toward us!








Wednesday, April 23, 2008

WEDNESDAY, APRIL 23, 2008 05:40 PM, EDT
From Ally's Mom...:-)

Excellent day today!

We took Ally for a walk downtown and she sang the whole way there and back!

Monday, April 21, 2008

MONDAY, APRIL 21, 2008 04:57 PM, EDT
Good news from Ally's Mom:

More blood tests today. Ally's numbers are good for a chemo patient (Her plateletes went from 66 to 314!). They are actually good enough for us to start round 4 of chemo on Friday! So, back to the hospital for the weekend. Happy Anniversary to us!

Ally was weighed today. She weighed 17lbs 4oz, a gain of about 12 ounces from last Thursday! If only it were good for all of us to gain weight at this rate!

Enjoy the weather.

Thank you BFA!

For many years, I considered myself to be a social democrat and an economic republican. That is until I finally realized what it means to be an economic republican. It means talking loudly about reducing taxes (mainly for the wealthy and large corporations), while spending lavishly on the military and supporting corporate subsidies. These two concepts held simultaneously leads to enormous deficits like the one we now have. Our children and their children will be paying those deficits off. Economic republicans also say that government is the problem. Just get out of the way and let corporations do their thing. Well, we did get out of the way and the corporations in their incessant efforts for ever larger profits sent almost all of our manufacturing jobs to China, India, and Mexico. Yes, slave labor is very profitable! Now the corporations have record profits and what do we have? We have crappy plastic Wal-Mart products that break almost as soon as we buy them. We receive millions of sales phone calls from India. We have poisoned food and drugs from China and Mexico. What we don’t have anymore is a strong economy and a strong currency. Have you noticed that the American dollar doesn’t buy shit anymore. It does buy Wal-Mart shit that you have to replace every six months. And that is just the way the republicans want it. Economic republicans and their corporate shills sold this country out. It has been said that the republican base consists of millionaires and suckers with the vast majority in the latter case.

Stephen Van Wagoner
Mon, 04/21/08

Sunday, April 20, 2008

"We need a nominee who will take on John McCain, not cheer on John McCain, and I will be that nominee," she said.


Clinton refrained from criticizing the Republican frontrunner John McCain, and instead shared a story about their accommodations when they traveled oversees together.

Presumably, if Hillary Clinton received a visit from the Delegate Fairy, and somehow ended up securing the nomination, she would actually shift gears and turn her attacks on John McCain. At this point that's kind of hard to imagine, since the Clinton snark and condescension has thus far been reserved for Barack Obama and grassroots activists. And friends who end up endorsing Obama rather than Clinton.

hattip to HEP

Childhood, memories

The Hut-Sut Song
Horace Heidt
Words and music by Leo V. Killion, Ted McMichael & Jack Owens

In a town in Sweden by a stream so clear and cool
A boy would sit and fish and dream when he should have been in school.
Now, he couldn't read or write a word but happiness he found
In a little song he heard and here's how it would sound;

Hut-Sut Rawlson on the rillerah and a brawla, brawla sooit,
Hut-Sut Rawlson on the rillerah and a brawla sooit.
Hut-Sut Rawlson on the rillerah and a brawla, brawla sooit,
Hut-Sut Rawlson on the rillerah and a brawla sooit.

Now the Rawlson is a Swedish town, the rillerah is a stream.
The brawla is the boy and girl,
The Hut-Sut is their dream.

Hut-Sut Rawlson on the rillerah and a brawla, brawla sooit.
Hut-Sut Rawlson on the rillerah and a brawla sooit.

The Cook, The Thief, His Wife & Her Lover

You're getting a little thin up there (twirling John's hair)

At least I don't plaster on the makeup like a trollop, you cunt

28 up, 3 down

1.) Cindy McCain, as defined by John McCain in a 1992 senate campaign bid. It was a long day.

2.) A whore; a woman perceived as sexually disreputable or promiscuous.

Cindy: You're getting a little thin up there (twirling John's hair)
John: At least I don't plaster on the makeup like a trollop, you cunt

by taschend Frederick, MD Apr 7, 2008 email it

April 20th Full Pink Moon 6:25 am


Saturday, April 19, 2008

Friday, April 18, 2008

Libra Moon by GeorgiaPeach

Caption: I know, the sun is in Aries, but the moon entered Libra at 5:06 pm EDT today - about three hours before I took this picture from my driveway.