Thursday, November 28, 2013


I have a lot of people to thank this year. Firstly, of course, my husband, who has been with me every step of the way through this stupid cancer, as patient as he could be, putting up with me on my worst days. I'm also infinitely thankful for my mom & step-dad, my husband's dad & step-mom, his mom & step-dad, & our extended family, who've all been super-supportive in every way.

I'm incredibly thankful for my friends, both local & spread around the world. The ones nearby have kept my hubby & I fed with home-cooked dinners & dropped by with chocolate & visited when I felt up to it. Many have sent funny cards & cute trinkets that really, honestly brightened my days.

I'm also thankful for my wider community -- including everyone here who reads & comments on this blog & my costume site. I'm awed & humbled by the support you've shown, through your messages, cards, gifts, donations, & buying stuff from my garage sale. Cancer is dark & depressing, but hearing from each of you has helped me through this immeasurably. I'm sorry if I haven't replied to each of you, but please know that every email, every comment, every card, every donation, every way you reached out to me has meant a lot to me & truly helped me get through the long, tedious days of recovering from chemo treatments.

I have to call out people by name -- thanks to all who've donated, thank you Lisa, Loren, Mary, Michele, Maureen, Irina, Sandra, Cathy, Lynne, Lori, Lyndsay, Mary, Paula, Sharon, Stephani, Emily, Sharon, Deborah, Merja, Chris, Elisabethe, Heather, Jennifer, Katherine, Franny, Kendra, Molly, Rachel, Shawna, Nicole, Tony, Vera, Katherine, Maggie, Amy, David, Elizabeth, Historic Costume Patterns, C., Jean, Julie, Kathryn, Michelle, Aisha, Aubry, Jonatha, Agnes, Alexandra, Angela, Carly, Jennifer, Josie, Sarah, Susanna, Alison, Ann, Cassidy, Cat's Meow Textiles, G., Julia, Laura, Katie, & Maria. And thanks to everyone who sent meals, gifts, & cards, thank you Sarah, Cynthia, Travlyn, Maryanne, Joyce, Tish, Noel, Carole, Linda, Rhawnie, Elisa, Melissa, Sahyre, Maggie, Wendi, Kelly, Doris, Mark, Kendra, Francis, Deb, Emily, Margaret, Cathyn, John, Leia, Jen, Liz, Laina, Radar, Leia, Kat, Truly, Franny, Beth, & Patricia. I couldn't have made it this far without all of you behind me!

I'm thankful for my doctors too, glad that my primary doctor acted fast when I discovered a lump in my breast & very glad she referred me to such an excellent surgeon & oncologist. I'm thankful that each of my specialists took time & care to explain my options & all the parts of my treatment. I'm deeply thankful for all the nurses too, especially at my oncologist's office, where the nursing staff made the chemo treatments more bearable with kindness, gentleness, patience, & good humor. I may have sucky, expensive private insurance (until blessed ObamaCare takes over on January 1 :), but at least my medical professionals are top notch!

Lastly, I'm thankful that I'm two-thirds of the way finished with treatment, & what should be the hardest part is over. Radiation starts the first week of December & is supposed to have far fewer & more milder of side effects than chemo. And when *that* is over, we're going to DisneyLand to celebrate! So I'm thankful I can look forward to that too :)

What I'm wearing:
Black & burgundy wig, gift from Sarah
Burgundy peplum sweater, gift from Sarah
Black T-shirt, Target
Black & white stripe skirt, White House | Black Market
Black tights, Calvin Klein
Black leather boots, Clarks
Beaded necklace, gift from Lisa
Silver & black teardrop earrings, random accessory store

Monday, November 25, 2013

Old Bats, New Bat

In this casual weekend outfit, I'm wearing a lot of my standard, everyday bats. The T-shirt & leggings have shown up on this blog plenty of times before.

But the pendant is new, & it was a lovely gift from the lovely people at Beneath Glass, an Etsy shop full of jewelry with artsy, vintage, steampunk, geeky, & fun prints & sayings in cameos on necklaces, rings, & more. I'm so delighted with this Victorian bat necklace, & I hope you'll check out their beautiful goods. Not an ad here, just sharing the love!

What I'm wearing:
Grey bat T-shirt, Target
Black linen skirt, H&M
Black bat leggings, Target
Black socks, unknown brand
Black laced-toe flats, Miz Mooz
Bat pendant, Beneath Glass on Etsy
Silver & black teardrop earrings, random accessory store

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Stripes & Crosses

Got out of the house for the evening with some friends, & took the opportunity to dress up a bit. Felt great to see people & be social!

Each round of chemo has been a little different in terms of side effects, but all have been exhausting, so I stay inside a lot. Friends & family do visit, but it's always lovely to see something other than my own home's walls.

While chemo is now over, & I'm still recovering & haven't gotten my energy back. I'd really like to feel "normal" again. And next week, I have my first appointment with the radiation doctor, which is my next course of treatment. So I'm not done with this thing yet...

What I'm wearing:
Black & grey sleeveless dress, Coldwater Creek | Black elastic belt, NY & Company | Grey & white stripe hooded sweater, Forever 21 | Black leggings with tiny cross print, Torrid | Black & grey stripe socks, unknown brand | Black flats, Aerosoles |  Pink scissor skull & crossbones necklace, gift from Elisa | Gunmetal skull earrings, Walgreens | Pink skull & crossbones earrings, random accessory store | Pewter bat bobby pin, random accessory store

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Oh How I Love Sweaters!

For Sophistique Noir's Monthly Theme of "sweaters" I thought I'd do a round-up of my faves.

First up, what I call 'the most expensive sweater' altho' at cost-per-wear, it's become quite affordable. From White House Black Market, I bought it full-price & haven't regretted it.

I'm also a huge fan to stripey sweaters. Very hard to resist! I have cardigans in black & whitepurple & black, pink & white, & grey & white, & a pullover/jumper in black & grey.


Then there's my exact multiples -- I have a black & fuchsia version of this vintage-style puffed-sleeve cardigan that works well open or closed.

And while I have a huge drawer full of more sweaters, I'll leave you with my most recent acquisition -- bat / cat!

Friday, November 1, 2013

Last Chemo Dance & Happy Halloween

Halloween Day was my last chemo treatment -- of course I was going to dress up! But I had some constraints, in that I couldn't wear long sleeves or tight upper sleeves because of the blood draw, blood pressure check, & the infusion itself. So I scoured my costume closet & realized I had this great big ballgown with a halter-style top. Luckily, it's pink & went with the pink ribbon "breast cancer" tiara I'd bought a few months earlier.

Many of the nurses at the clinic were dressed in costume, & everyone loved my "Drag Queen Cancer Princess" outfit. They even took a picture for their breakroom photo wall. And my husband documented the day & posted on Facebook.

Now, it's just a few weeks of side effects & recover, then I start radiation, which is much more targeted & supposed to have far more mild side effects -- so I can go back to work & hopefully have a more normal life again! Really looking forward to that.

What I'm wearing:
Pink silk dupioni 1950s-style ballgown, made by Donna | Full petticoat underneath, thriftstore | Black drag-queen wig, eBay | Pink ribbon tiara, Etsy | Black tights, Calvin Klein | Black ribbon-tie pumps, Clark's | Black lace, pearl, & chain choker, bought at Convergence | Black with pink crystal earrings, random accessory store | Pewter woman symbol stud earring, bought on the street in Berkeley | Ying/yang stud earring, bought on the street in Berkeley | Pewter peace symbol earring, bought on the street in Berkeley | Black gloves, vintage | Black faux-fur cape (worn in treatment chair), vintage

Selfie on the ride to the clinic
Checking in at the office
Waiting with my sweetie, he's been there every step of the way!
Super cool medical assistant Jordan checking my vitals
My excellent oncologist Dr. Mann checks my progress
Sitting in the chair before getting the last infusion