Category Archives: Uncategorized

Confirmation of Paco’s Diagnosis – Wed. Aug. 16, 2017

I received the following message from Steve this morning:

The surgeon’s office called me this morning. The full pathology of the tumor came back this morning and confirmed that there was nothing malignant. Just the “ABC.” Great news!

ABC is Aneurysmal Bone Cyst.

Below is a photo of Paco and Tommy taken on Aug. 5th, a few days before Paco’s surgery. Steve captioned it,, “A Rare Moment of Peace”.


Recipe for Savory Crackers – Mon. Aug. 14, 2017

I forgot to mention that as an hors d’oeuvre, Janet also served savory crackers with confit jelly. The “crackers” are like an ice box shortbread cookie, but instead of being sweet, they are savory. I wrote to ask Janet what the cookies were called and she sent the recipe.

Janet sent some of the crackers home with us. Clark and I each ate couple on the way home.

Also, Janet worked 11 1/2 years as City Manager of Orinda, not 8 years.

Thanks, for your gourmet cooking, Janet!

New Home of Erin’s Favorite Dog – Mon. August 14, 2017

Today Clark and I went to Lodi for brunch at the new home of my niece Janet Keeter and her husband Steve and dog Ruby. Erin loved taking care of Ruby. Janet and Steve would leave Ruby in Davis with Erin when they went on trips. Now Ruby is about 14 and is getting very old. I wish that I taken a photo of her. My friend Joanne Donovan, who lives in Lodi, also came to lunch. Joanne was a favorite of Erin’s and used to send Erin cute cards for holidays.

Janet recently retired after 11 1/2 (I initially said 8 years) years of being City Manager of Orinda in the East Bay. Before that she had worked in Lodi as assistant City Manager, so she and Steve decided they would like to return to the easy life of Lodi. They were living in Alamo, near Walnut Creek, and they sold their house to my sister Joan and husband Ralph, Janet’s parents. Joan and Ralph had lived in Oakland for 52 years and walked up 42 stairs to get to their front door. It was getting harder and harder for 87 year old Ralph to negotiate all of those stairs.

Janet and Steve had built a china hutch into their living room in Alamo. So, they left that for Joan and Ralph, and in exchange took the china hutch which Joan had inherited from my mother. I think that this hutch came with the Park Blvd house which my parents bought in an estate sale in 1946.
Here is a photo of Janet posing in front of the hutch:

Janet and I in front of the hutch:

And below is a picture of the dramatic entrance to their beautiful home:

Janet and Joan also exchanged coffee tables.The hat rack was made from the spindle legs of the large square table which Joan and Ralph had used as a coffee table without the legs in the living room of their old house. Janet and Steve had new lower support made for the coffee table.

Janet’s brunch was delicious. Right after retirement, she had taken a cooking course for 3 days at The Culinary Institute of America at Greystone in St. Helena, near Napa. For us she cooked salmon quiche, cream scones, tomato mozzarella basil salad with balsamic vinegar, and fresh fruit salad. … all yummy.

Clark always enjoys discussing high school and college basketball with Steve. Steve was a former assistant high school basketball coach at St. Mary’s in Stockton until the commute between Alamo and Stockton got to be too much.

Thanks, Janet and Steve!

Paco Before and After Surgery – Thurs. Aug. 10, 2017

This was Paco before surgery. He was completely calm.

Below is after surgery. Steve says Paco managed a quick smirk for the camera … still coming out of the fog.

Clark commented that Paco looks like a real man now. Steve says that Paco is now 5’7”. He has grown so much in the last 6 months.


Paco Out of Surgery – Thurs. August 10, 2017

Paco had surgery this morning in Grand Rapids to repair his broken clavicle. I just had this message from Steve:

Good news! Paco is out of surgery. The biopsy confirmed it was a benign tumor. His collarbone is all put back together with a stainless steel plate and 7 (!) screws.

It certainly was good news.

Comments from Steve – Monday, Aug. 7, 2017

Steve reminded me that the date of the break was Sat. July 15th, not the 31st, which is when Steve called me.  Steve had some further comments which I will include now.

Steve Haas:

Saw your post.  The injury happened on July 15, to clarify.

The orthopedist here in Traverse City (TC) looked hard at the X-ray and then ordered a CT scan, which prompted the referral to the orthopaedic oncology doctor in Grand Rapids (GR).  He is actually a pediatric orthopaedic specialist who deals with a lot of issues aside from cancer.   

Anyway, I have barely slept in over a week, so this morning was a huge relief, though Paco is bummed about the surgery and missing camp.  I am, too.  It was an 11-day sleep away arts camp at Blue Lake, near Muskegon.  It is supposed to be beautiful.  I was also excited that Paco seemed to be getting independent and was happy about going. He has a couple of friends from school who are going.

Oh, more color… the oncologist has a son who is also 13 and plays travel baseball… we may have played against them at some point.

He had conferred with a colleague about Paco before we got there and thought it best to reset the bone and put the plate to better align it properly.  Else, they said, he would have trouble throwing and playing sports in the future.

The two ends of the broken clavicle are not even touching now, they are misaligned front to back and in height.

He isn’t in any pain, though, it is healing very quickly, this part of the rush for the surgery now.

I do miss Kaiser… much of the delay here has been awaiting insurance approval for the CT, then the MRI, and a referral to a specialist downstate.

I agree with Steve. We do get spoiled by the convenience of Kaiser. What a relief it is for everybody to hear that it is not cancer.



Paco to have Surgery Thursday – Mon. Aug. 7, 2017

Last Monday Steve called to say that Paco had broken his right clavicle.  Paco has been playing on a traveling baseball team this summer. They were in Ann Arbor on July 15th where Paco played 3rd base. He scooped up a ground ball, tagged out the runner going between 2nd and 3rd, and then threw a bullet to 1st base for a double play.

Everyone was cheering, but Paco was writhing in pain. He had not collided with anyone, but in the act of throwing the ball to 1st base,  he broke his right clavicle. Steve has been very worried about the cause of the break. Just this week the pediatrician said that the bone was healing nicely, but there was something that looked like a cyst at the point of the break.

This morning Steve and Paco went to Grand Rapids to see an orthopedic oncologist. He said that Paco has an aneurysmal bone cyst. According to Wikipedia, it is a misnomer. It is neither an aneurysm or a cyst. It is not cancerous.

The oncologist will remove the cyst during surgery Thursday morning in Grand Rapids. And an orthopedist will put in a titanium plate. It is outpatient surgery.

Steve was very relieved that it was not cancer. Paco was bummed because he is going to miss Band Camp which starts this Wed. (Paco plays the drums.) and he will not be able to be active for 6 weeks.