Sunday, May 29, 2016

Make Your Own Font

G'Day, Readers,

Writing today to share a link to a fab site that transforms one's own handwriting into one's very own font!

This is something I've been wanting to do for many a yonk and now, it's do-able with ease and for free.

I ended up creating only printed fonts, as getting my cursive letters to link up properly was a bit of a challenge, so I aborted.  Plus, I never write in cursive anyway so...

Perhaps the more tenacious ones out there will have better luck/skillz with the actual writing.

Here's the font-makin' link for the keen:

In other news, the latest kidney test results are in and I'll sum it up with the number 35.

Yup, the ole GFR is down to 35 again.  A number not seen since the chemo days/ze.

I recall the outright joy I felt to see it finally get up to that number, as it meant I was no longer in stage 4 of 5 on the renal damage scale.  To see it there again now, (after it being above 40 at one point), is something that I hope HARD will soon trend back up to its former glory.

I have been eating more fish and cheese over this past year and perhaps it's time to lean more on the legumes again?

I will also share that the uric acid is once again, WAY too elevated, (after going down some for a while, though still above max), and that too, is un-nerving.

Reason being, high uric acid levels/gout is linked to early death via adverse cardiac events--even in the healthy-eating/non-boozing/non-smoking groups.

(Click to check out an interview with a doc discussing his studies on gout.)

So of course, I've been back in research-mode again and I have recently come across a *potential* fix, in the form of a different BP med--an ARB called Losarten, which also helps reduce proteinuria, just like the ACE Inhibitor I'm on, (Ramipril).

What makes Losartan worth talking about with the Neph and Rheumy is that apparently, it also helps the body excrete more uric acid.

I will be discussing this and much more with the dear ole Prof next week.

'Til next time, "write on",

; J

Monday, May 23, 2016


Gooooooooood Morning, All,

Writing today mostly to share some recent visual art, this time a return to acrylics after more than a decade off that horse.

This piece was inspired by a photo P took near the river last summer and in these particular times of so many hippy/activist-types movin' on into their golden years, turns out it's a pretty hip painting.

Just last week, P showed me a meme of an elderly person sporting a black T-shirt with big white letters boldly stating, "Old is the New Black".

But my chosen subject matter is a total coincidence, I just loved the photo and memory.

I call this one, "The Gang Gets--Their Bench".

It's a bit of a French-English pun, as the photo was taken at a "guingette", (pronounced, "gang get"), meaning, basically, a riverside cafe that also has live entertainment on the weekends.

In other less colorful news, I am not pleased to share that since reaching 0 megs of prednisone in February, I have been struggling with increased joint pain from my fingers to my toes, along with still,  random and repeating lightening bolts of harsh pain all over too--which I REALLY hoped would do a fade out as my body adjusted to being off the dreadnisone, mais non. 

I will be seeing my Rheumy-Professor in early June to talk about what I feared a long time ago, and that is, the distinct possibility that all the prednisone I have been on for the last three years has been masking yet another condition, which now that I'm off the stuff is rearing again.

Or these pains could just be due to damages from the MPA.

Or perhaaaaaaps, the pains are all just due to osteoarthritis, which came on the scene in '06/07. 

X-rays then showed: a lumbar disc already almost gone, deterioration between C4-7 with a reverse-angle in the neck thanks to more than 8 seconds as a rodeo-rag doll impersonator back in the day, as well an MRI that showed right knee deterioration.

And still, I try to manage this, by the day's end, usually crippling pain with merely nearly-useless paracetamol, (Tylenol), and off and on, low-dose Tramadol.

Due to an opiate/oid allergy and the kidneys, my pain management choices are minimal.

It will be JUAN FINE DAY when ole France finally gets on board the medical cannabis train.   But that's a subject for an entirely new blog post.

And even though I thought that by now, THREE years post-acute renal failure and after thousands of milligrams of prednisone, multiple rounds of chemo AND Rituximab, things would be different--I am still basically 90 years old and in the sack by 7 or 8pm nightly.

On the upside, I recently had blood work done, (MPA control, not kidney), and amazingly, almost all the values were in normal range!  (Total cholesterol was a hair over the line, but not the LDL nor the triglycerides and yay).

ANCA is still 1:20 (negative being under that), but with near-non-existent MP0/PR3 levels, coupled with the stable kidneys, it all adds up to my being considered still, in medical remission from Vasculitis and yay again for that.

And more high-fives to healthy eating.

And this week, the ole beans will be tested too, so toes-crossed for continued stability there.

'Til next time, likely post-Rheumy-visit, bon vibes to All,