Hello again

As I said in my last post, I'd be back if I had anything important to share. I'm not saying anything about this on instagram because I feel a bit exposed over there.  A few months ago, I was diagnosed with a non-malignant brain tumour. It's a meningioma - it's not cancer and it's not life threatening. The specialist has suggested that we should watch it for 12 months to see if it's growing, and if it is, how fast. When they know that there will either be treatment in the form of surgery and/or radiotherapy, or no treatment at all. My doctor's wife has had the same tumour for the past 10 years and hers has remained the same size and is stable.  We're hoping mine will be the same.



I'm telling you this now because I need to tell certain people and I think when a few people know, they will tell others, and I'll get a lot of emails asking if I'm okay.  I think it's best to let everyone know at the same time and we can just carry on as normal. 😊


My main problems are with dizziness and sleep. The dizziness kicks in mostly when I'm walking on uneven ground, when I'm going down steps or when I'm gardening. Morag came down and helped with the garden a few months ago when I told her about it and it's been okay till now. The weeds are taking over but I'm still harvesting herbs, chillies and cucumbers.  In March I'll get someone to come in and prepare the garden for our yearly planting and I'm sure I'll be able to manage it when the heavy work and planting is complete.  I want to keep going as normal, doing as much as I can with a bit of help when I need it.  Hanno can't do the garden now either because he gets dizzy when he continually bends over and stands up.


Everything else is good. We had a lovely Christmas lunch over at Kerry and Sunny's new home and sat back and enjoyed the Boxing day test match the following day.  This weekend, Jo, my Penguin editor, and her family will come to visit us.  The photos are what I made for her two little girls.  I gave Jo's older daughter one of the Maggie rabbits I made a few years ago so this little one is for her baby sister.

I hope you enjoyed the Christmas break.  I know it's a time of joy and family get-togethers but it's also a lonely time for many as well. If you're one of the lonely ones, let's look to the year ahead. I'm looking forward to 2019 and I hope you are too. We never know what the months ahead will bring but let's hope our harvests are abundant, our neighbours are quiet and our local libraries stock a long list of interesting books for us to read.

I'm opening the comments again and I'll stay here on the blog and see how it feels to be posting again.  No promises about keeping the blog going but I feel more comfortable here than on instagram.  Let's see how it pans out.

ADDED LATER:
Thank you all for your comments and good wishes.  I've tried to reply to a couple of your comments but the system isn't allowing it at the moment. I might have to tweak a few buttons but I'll do that tomorrow. 

158 comments

  1. Hoping the tumor will remain stable without treatment and you'll be able to continue doing all of the things you enjoy!

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  2. Hi there...lovely to see a post from you πŸ™‚. I am sorry to hear you have been unwell, and did wonder. Thank you for sharing. Hopefully all will be stable and you can get out into your beloved garden. The Maggie rabbits are truly gorgeous!Take care

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  3. Corinne Al-NatourDecember 28, 2018 3:20 pm

    Hi Rhonda, I'm sorry to hear that you are having health problems. I hope that it will be ok for as long as possible.
    I have been thinking of you nearly every day since you have closed the blog. When I potter in the garden, make some bread (Ahhh the 5 minutes bread !), cooking diner, make some liquid soap for the washing machine or the solid bar soap for myself and the kids... so many occasions that remind me of how much you have taught me (and so many others) all these years. I just wanted to tell you that finding your blog so many years ago has truly changed my life for the better. Not only in teaching me all what I need to know around the house, but also in giving me the confidence that I can get on with very limited resources and be deeply satisfied and happy with the life that I'm building for myself and the kids. A huge thank you for the advices, common sense and wisdom that you have been so generous in sharing here.

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  4. Oh Rhonda, I am sorry to read about your diagnosis. I too hope the tumor will remain stable without treatment as it has done for you doctor's wife. I am sure your plan to keep things as normal as possible and seek help when needed is the best way forward. Thank you for taking the time to share the photos of the dear rabbit presents you have made.

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  5. Dear Rhonda, i am sorry to hear about your diagnosis & wish you well & all the best in 2019. I was very happy to find you on Instagram, as i have followed your blog for many years. Take care.

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  6. Sending many kind thoughts your way and to Hanno too.

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  7. Glad to see you are back. It's like receiving a Christmas present. I agree the blog is more you than instergram.Iam sure your health issues will be sorted out soon. Wish you and your family all the very Best for 2019

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  8. Hi Rhonda I hope that the tumor behaves as it should and that you can continue to enjoy all the activities you love to do.

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  9. Oh dear Rhonda, I'm sorry to hear your diagnosis. I hope it all remains stable and you find ways to work around any limitations.
    Happy new year may 2019 bring you much joy and contentment
    Cheers Kate

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  10. Lovely to have your blog up and running again but sorry re the sad news. Positive thoughts are coming your way for the coming year. x

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  11. I'm so sorry hear about your sad news. Will be sending prayers your way. i hope the tumor does not get worse.

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  12. Sending my warmest wishes, lovely to see your post and hoping your condition stabilises. It's good that you know someone in a similar situation.

    It's great to hear from you again and I would love it if you are able to manage occasional updates.

    All the best to you, Hanno and family for peace, health and contentment in 2019. xxx

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  13. Sending optimistic, healing vibes your way. Saying prayers for you too. May 2019 be a wonderful year for you and Hanno. Hugs from Chicago area...

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  14. Dear Rhonda,I'm sorry to hear about your recent health problems. Sending you hugs and warm wishes that everything goes well for you. I have to say a very big Thankyou, for all of the inspiring posts that you have written over the years.I found your blog in 2010 and read every single post every day that you posted here. At the time I was not in a very good place,and alot of days where very dark for me,but reading your posts somehow kept me going. Through you I learnt how to make my own laundry detergent (which I still make) make my own bread,and I ended up buying a bread machine,learnerd to manage money better,and payed off a loan ��,and also got inspired to make a vegetable garden. I also bought all three of your books and refer to them often.Your kind,gentle and wise words have inspired not only me but all who have ever read your blog and for that I say Thankyou Rhonda ��
    Gabriella

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  15. Rhonda you as always, are taking things in your stride and that will be the key to handling your condition and the changes it may or may not bring to everyday life. I know of a lady who has the same condition and she has continued with a simple approach to home-keeping, and is able to do exquisite knitted toys similar to your rabbits. Wishing you and Hanno the very best for 2019. I will be keeping up with your posts whether here, or on Instagram. Trish ��(@vintagetrish on Insta)

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  16. Thank you Morag for helping our friend.It is very sad to hear your news Rhonda but as usual you are an inspiration. Time has come for you to enjoy the gardening luxuries, having others do the hard yakka leaving you to absorb,smell,pick and enjoy the garden bounties.
    Your Christmas gifts were lovely, I do remember you making Jo's older daughter a Maggie. I love the new Maggie's hessian bag for her market shopping. Very DTE!
    Take Care, Love Damac xx

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  17. Thinking of you Rhonda and Hanno and blessings for 2019.

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  18. Goodness, Rhonda, not what I was expecting to hear!! It sounds like you're in good hands and while it is very worrying for you and your lovely and supportive family, it's good to know it's manageable for now. Weird things happen to us but thank goodness we live in a modern and civilised part of the world. A pity about you not being able to throw yourself into the gardening as usual but I'm sure some crafty occupation will rapidly fill the void. Your gifts are adorable!

    This is not my story but if you are interested, a very good 60 year old friend had surgery for a meningioma in December and is completely back to her old self, although not driving yet. Her surgeon said it could possibly have been there for up to 40 years! She only found out about it in November when it started to cause her headaches and dizziness and uncoordination and she had a minor prang in her car. It was whipped out a week or so after she was sent to a specialist but her Dr wasn't keen on radiotherapy (it was one level up from totally benign) so she's just on a watch list. She was off to the cinema 4 days later! The staples looked gruesome but she was as merry as a bird! As well she would be after such a close shave.

    We're with you in hoping 2019 brings bright things and Good Health all round!



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  19. Hello rhonda , Sorry to hear about your health , lets just hope your tumor doesn't get any bigger but that doesn't help with your dizziness , Its difficult when your health interferes with things you love or need to do , We had a quiet christmas and am looking forward to the new year more xxx

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  20. Oh rhonda, i'm so glad to see you back on your blog... But i'm sorry to hear you have health problems.I wish you and Hanno all the best for 2019.
    I think of you every day since you have closed your blog, and i read your blog often (yesterday to clean my oven ....). I also follow you on instagram.
    I'm sorry your books are not translate in french...
    I send you lot of kiss from France.
    (Sorry for my english )

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  21. Well, that’s a bummer isn’t it? Sorry to hear your news. I think regardless of health, most of us will need help as we age and you are both graceful enough not only to realise that, but to let that help in. May you enjoy your garden as much as possible.

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  22. Sorry to hear this news Rhonda, fingers crossed all goes well as the months and years tick over.

    If it’s any reassurance or comfort I had a haemangioma surgically removed from behind my eye when I was in my early 20’s. It required neurosurgery to remove, which was scary at the time, but all went well, and I’ve not had any problems since. (I’m now nearly 47)

    I will be thinking of you over the coming months, and please, if it’s not an intrusion on your privacy, let us all know how you get on.

    Love from Cheryl

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  23. In your supportive, warm, and caring blog, you will hopefully find support, warmth and care right back! From all of your readers!

    I'm very happy to see you back here! Wishing you and Hanno strength, and total recovery! And lots and lots of years ahead to spend with your beautiful family.

    love,
    Clarien, Holland

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  24. Praying for you! God bless!

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  25. Oh dear! Sorry to hear this, but also good to hear it is benign. Keep looking after yourselves and know we are all sending you hugs and good wishes!

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  26. Oh Rhonda, what a bummer, but I know that you and Hanno will deal with these issues and find away to change your activities so that you will continue to garden etc.
    Sending you hugs and good vibes
    Cheers
    Lorraine

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  27. what a welcome site your post was! sorry to hear about your health hasn't been great & can now see why you took a break, it's big news, i pray that it stays put & you can enjoy your live again
    hope you had a lovely christmas
    thanx for sharing

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  28. Dear Rhonda,
    I am so happy that you are able to carry on doing as much as you can. You no doubt know we all have missed you.
    Wish I was closer to lend a hand like so many we feel you take up a special space in our lives.
    If you recall you gave us grandparent advice �� our little man will have a review scan this May to find the reason behind multiple seizures.
    I know you are strong by the way you handle your every day life please know we all support you.
    Donna

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    1. Donna, have you tried a genetic test? It was the answer to our son's seizures which turned out to be finite (we hope) and benign.

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  29. My warmest best wishes for the coming year. May I suggest a way to ease work in the garden? If you have not investigated the no-dig method, please have a look at Charles Dowding's no-dig gardening on his website and youtube channel. This produced abundant crops and few weeds this year on my first allotment. It put good food on the table and was immense fun.

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  30. I'm wishing you the best possible outcome, and the most ease in navigating this new normal. You'll be in my prayers.

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  31. Dear Rhonda ~ It is so good to see you posting again, but I am sorry to hear about your health news. I pray that you and Hanno will have a wonderful 2019, filled with many blessings. I am looking forward to 2019.

    Love & hugs ~ FlowerLady

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  32. So glad to see you back on your old blog, it feels like home, I read you for so many years here. I hope 2019 will bring good things for you and Hanno.

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  33. No wise or fancy words from us here except to say - all our love to you Rhonda.

    Love Phil, Mignon and the girls

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  34. You are missed. Your health is in my prayers.

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  35. Aunt Diane from StreatorDecember 29, 2018 12:13 am

    Love & Prayers to you & your family. I “met” you this summer & have missed you the last few months. You really do “make me want to be a better person”! Blessings to all!

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  36. I am so sorry to hear about your situation but it sounds like your prognosis and outlook are very good. I am very glad to see your post -- you have been missed.

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  37. Dear Rhonda, I was so happy to see a new blog post, but I'm sad to hear about your health problem.
    I hope the tumor stays stable. Wishing you, Hanno and everyone in your family very happy 2019.

    XX
    Nil

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  38. Rhonda! I intuitively felt that you were going to post yesterday. I came online to check, and there you were. I am sorry to hear about your brain tumor, but hope it is manageable. You sound like you are arranging help, which is wise. I'm glad you can still grow your own food and make your lovely crafts. They are so sweet and feminine. Please keep us posted on your health when you have the time and energy.

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  39. I’ll be following, whether you’re here or on Instagram. Sending prayer for you and Hanno this morning.

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  40. I'm sorry to hear about your health issues. I'm sure you'll handle this challenge with your usual good sense. Sending love and good wishes for a swift recovery from Georgia, USA!

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  41. Rhonda, we have missed you so much! I read your blog all of the time, repeatedly, lol, and finally found you on ig. Thank you for your sharing, tips, guidance, all of these years. You and Hanno are special people. I know that you will get along with your diagnosis, but the dizziness can be of a concern. I'm glad that you are getting help with your garden so that you can keep your food supply available. Sending healing and loving thoughts your way.
    Robin in Montana

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  42. Thank you for sharing. I will be praying for you.

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  43. Hi Rhonda.
    It’ s so nice to hear about you and read your post, although it’ s about a health issue.
    I will put you in my prayers.
    Hopefully everything will be ok. Love
    Love

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  44. I too am looking forward to 2019! Wishing you and Hanno a wonderful New Year with good health and plenty to do. I will keep my fingers crossed that you once again at comfortable blogging here, we all.miss you.

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  45. I'm so thrilled you're back! Your news isn't joyful but God is bigger then anything here on earth, I'll definitely pray for you and your family. I'm excited for any posts you share, I don't have instagram and have really missed you.

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  46. Hi Rhonda, I hope the tumor will shrink or Stay the same size. It is great to hear from you again. Your posts are so inspiring.
    Take good care and for you and Hanno a happy, healthy 2019.

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  47. Hi Rhonda
    Sorry to hear about your health. Hope everything will be great and 2019 will be a wonderful year for you and Hanno.

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  48. Dear Rhonda, Thinking of you and Hanno. With Love, Jo

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  49. We wish you a healthy 2019. That the tumor may as small at it is. Wishing you all the best!
    Glad to read again .
    love from Canada.
    Wilma

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  50. I'm so sorry to hear about the tumor but I'm so happy to hear that it is non life threatening!
    I'm sure the little girls are thrilled with the bunny & purse! How cute they turned out!

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  51. Rhonda,
    Thank you for sharing your health news with us. Health is a private thing and you are very open to let us know what is happening.
    I wish you the best and know you will rise to all occasions with the grace and strength you display in your writings.
    Your wish for all of us - abundant harvest, quiet neighbors & stocked libraries is perfect :)

    Debra

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  52. Rhonda, I received your book as a Christmas gift. I can hardly put it down. I just started knitting to help with stress. I am going to pray for you. You have clearly blessed many. I pray that God blesses you back.

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  53. Hi Rhonda, so sorry to hear of your tumor but very glad it is non malignant, hopefully it will remain as it is (or improve) and become part of your new normal. Accepting help when needed allows us to continue doing the things we love, which is important for our well being. Any posts you decide to make, whether often or every now and then, I'm sure everyone will accept and be happy with. Here or instagram, whichever you are more comfortable with. Wishing you and Hanno well, Gracie to of course :) Kate from Tassie (colkkat on IG) xx

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  54. Dear Rhonda ~
    I am so sorry to hear of your health concerns, both you and Hanno. I will send good wishes and hope that this will not grow and that you will continue with good health otherwise. I'm glad that you have decided to come back and let us know. We will all hold you in our hearts I am sure. Glad to hear that your Christmas was lovely. Best wishes for health and happiness in the new year! Donna xxx

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  55. Rhonda, it was so wonderful to stop by here, looking for something about stitcheries, and find you had posted! I've really missed your messages, and encouragement, as I am not on Instagram. Your simple and slow way of living has inspired me for many years.
    I have been reading your book, Down to Earth, for the last several weeks (again) and feel very excited headed into a new year armed with all of your special advice.
    I'm sending healing thoughts your way.
    Hugs from Sarah in New Mexico

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  56. Rhonda thank you for letting your blog friends know about what has been happening with you. I wish you all the best and hope that your brain tumour remains stable for as long as possible without medical intervention other than check ups. Look after yourself and if you feel like posting here it would be lovely to hear from you again. Take care. x

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  57. Lovely surprise to hear from you - warmest wishes to you both for healthy years ahead and a fantastic 2019. Love from Judith - New Zealand.

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  58. I was just talking about you the other day---I made one of your recipes (the crustless quiche/impossible pie, so delicious and perfect for using up bits and bobs from the fridge, we have it at least once a month) and I told my husband the recipe was from my friend in Australia. That is how I think of you. I'm glad you had a wonderful Christmas and I wish you and Hanno all the best in 2019. May you be enveloped in healing love from all your devoted readers!!! Hugs from Seattle.

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  59. Dear Rhonda,
    I was so pleased to see that there was a new post from you. I have missed your kind, gentle and wise words that have inspired and encouraged us to live a simpler and more meaningful life.
    I was saddened to read about your health and the impact it has had on you.
    Rhonda, I hope and pray for the very best outcome with the meningioma and that your health improves significantly.
    Best wishes to you, Hanno and your lovely family. May 2019 bring you good heath, love and peace.
    With love,
    Maria from Adelaide xx

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  60. Prayers coming your way. As far as the garden goes, you gotta do what you can. I am sorry for the dizziness too. :( I will keep you in my prayers fr sure and am looking forward to any updates you feel like posting. we get it. :) hugs!

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  61. Thank you for sharing Rhonda and I do wish you well over the coming year and beyond. You are right, none of us know what is around the corner so live each day in peace with what we can do and enjoy it - particularly through the aging process. I appreciate the honesty of your human story - it helps with my own. I look forward to reading whatever you write. All the best to you, Hanno and the dog. Georgina from Perth.

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  62. Oh, Rhonda ... I am so sorry to hear this; yet, it sounds manageable. I hope you continue to receive excellent medical care and can find ways to make your life continue as you would like it to. Years ago I experienced dizziness due to “floaties” in the fluid in my ear canals — Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo. I underwent months of physical therapy and was able to train my brain not to react, at least not as much! I can stop a dizzy episode “on a dime;” although, occasionally I need a tune up with regards to repositioning the floaties. Experiencing dizziness and the accompanying balance issues are not fun! I once fell in a restroom stall trying to situate myself. Scared the daylights out of me, although I wasn’t hurt. Do be careful. You’ll be in my thoughts and prayers. Take care.

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    1. Chris M I was diagnosed with BPPV some years ago and yes it is rotten but our dr successfully used the Epley manoeuvre, is that the physical therapy you mentioned? it’s on YouTube, our dr advised my husband to watch it and he successfully used it to calm all down for me after taking a flight abroad. So much better than the meds I was given. Hope it goes soon! x

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    2. Yes, Catz ... it’s the Epley maneuver. Works wonders!

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  63. So very sorry to hear about your health concerns. I came across your blog a couple of years ago, which led me to read your books and I just want to tell you how much of a blessing you've been in my life. Reading your blog reminded me of many skills and such that my grandmothers taught me and you have helped me so much in learning to slow down in my life and just appreciate what I've got and use what I've got and not always long for that which I don't have. It's also been a lovely touch of home when I've felt homesick (I'm an Aussie now living in the US). I truly hope and pray for the best possible outcome in all of this for you and for Hanno. Wishing you all the best!

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  64. Best wishes Rhonda. The tips you made are lovely. Hope you can get back into the garden soon.

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  65. Prayers from Oregon. Excited when I saw you'd posted . . .

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  66. Hi Rhonda, Nannachel posted a link on the Homemakers Forum to alert the members of your disturbing news. Not a good start to the new year, but hopefully the tumour will remain unchanged for the foreseeable future, and you will be able to continue a peaceful life, albeit a bit slower than anticipated. I have slowed down a lot since "our" 70th birthday, due to arthritis in my knee which will need a total knee replacement some day, but not for a few years I am told. Ah, the joys of getting older...

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  67. I'm so sorry to hear you are unwell, I hope you will find a treatment that relieves the dizziness so you can do the things you love. Best wishes to you & Hanno for the new year. love, Jan

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  68. You have been on my mind and I’m so glad you were able to share your news, all our good thoughts go with you. Whilst you weren’t blogging I bought your books and they and your blog constantly remind me of the wisdom you share on life, for both the good times and during the times that we are challenged. Thank you for all you give to your web friends. Best wishes, always.

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  69. Rhonda, best wishes to you and Hanno. Thank you for sharing your difficult news, I will be sending you care and strength from WA.

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  70. Thinking about you and Hanno, and hoping for the best possible outcome. Good to see you back!

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  71. Much love to you, I will keep you in my prayers. ♥️

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  72. Rhonda, sorry to hear about this. Hoping the tumour doesn't need treatment. The dizziness sounds more of a problem though so physical remedies to counter with this, possibly a low light stool for gardening or a reaching aid so you don't need to bend, may be worth exploring. You and Hanno have made a real impact in my life in the last decade and I wish you both, and your family, happiness, health and contentment in 2019.

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  73. You are in my thoughts and prayers dear Rhonda. Much love to you and Hanno from across the ditch. Wendy xxx

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  74. So sorry to hear of your tumor - thank God it's not malignant! Naturally do whatever you need to take care of yourself and your family, we will be here for you should you need to vocalize anything to us in blog-land.
    Richard (in Charlotte, North Carolina, USA)

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  75. Sending love and good vibes to my favourite blogger:)

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  76. Hi Rhonda, I hope your condition remains stable and you are able to continue with your best quality of life given your circumstances. Sending love and abundant light. xx

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  77. Well that's a shame! But at least you know what's causing the dizziness - my Mum's been dizzy for over a year now and no one can work out why.
    Love to you and Hanno... and of course the pup!

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  78. Hi Rhonda, sorry to hear about your health, my fingers are crossed for you that all will be good.

    You & Hanno have reached that stage in life where you have to take it easy & were not far behind I'm afraid.
    Looking forward to hearing how you are going in the future. My thoughts are with you.
    Cheers Terrarossa xx

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  79. Hi Rhonda,
    So sorry to hear re your health. You have been such an inspiration to me re garden and Natural living. I do pray for you and Hanno re your health and that you would know the peace Jesus can bring at this time,
    God bless, Maree.

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  80. Hello Rhonda! I was so sorry to hear about your tumour, but so glad to read that it is not malignant. It was a real joy to read the rest of your post, and to see the beautiful handicrafts you have been making. Blessings to you, Hanno and the family for a beautiful 2019.

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  81. Thank you for sharing with us Rhonda. I will be praying for you and Hanno. God bless you both

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  82. l am so sorry you are having health problems It's so good to see that you are back here, I've miss your post and check in often. Wishing you and Hanno the very best in the year to come.

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  83. I have missed your blog since you stopped in September, but totally understand why you did Rhonda. A couple of days ago I decided to google your name which led me to Instagram (I don`t do social network). I was pleased to see that I could read about your activities without getting involved. After I had read a few entries I felt so calm and satisfied with my lot. Please look after yourself and Hanno, and any blogs via Down to Earth are a bonus for us. Love Patricia πŸ’

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  84. I amazing what modern medical system can do. My youngest son 27 had a tumor remove from his brain 20 months ago, and like to report all reports been excelent.
    Hopeful both he and you will receive good news and blessings.
    Coffee is on

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  85. Dear Rhonda, you have been on my mind lately. Thank you for sharing this news with us. Isn't it amazing what we have to work through sometimes. Please keep us updated, it is wonderful to be hearing from you anyway. My Christmas was a good one, although yes, the neighbours got a bit loud! Love to you from Lisa x

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  86. It is so lovely to hear from you again on this blog, you have been missed.

    I agree with you about Instagram, just lately I have had an influx of potential followers that I do not want. Maybe I will switch back to my blog also, as it does feel better to be posting on there. Originally my daughter signed me up for Instagram because she was going overseas and said I would be able to follow her movements. It took me ages to start posting on there and lately I have slowed right down again. However I do like to follow a few simple living "Instagrammers" though, so will probably keep the account open.

    Take good care of yourself Rhonda.

    Sending best wishes to you, Hanno and family,

    Love Tania xxx

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  87. I have missed hearing from you, too. Your health and the health of your family comes first in my book, so I'm glad you took the time you've needed. Thank you for letting us know what's going on with you

    It's our first Christmas in our new home, clear across the country. We spent the summer on a cross country road trip, and then the last three months trying to unpack and set up our new place. It's double the size of our old home, which is totally needed with the five of us adult-sized humans! It was a lovely Christmas, though, for all of the craziness.

    I'm looking forward to a Happy New Year and more stability as we finish unpacking and painting. Your books give me a great place to ponder how I want my home to be. Thank you always for that.

    Happy New Year, everyone!

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  88. Thinking of you Rhonda and sending my very best wishes. My sister has the same tumour and has yearly MRIs to check its size. Thankfully hers has not grown and she is able to manage the dizziness that she too suffers. It's not easy changing the way we do things to accommodate health issues and so I'm thinking of you both and thank you for sharing this big news with us. love Margaret

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  89. So sorry to hear you're not feeling well Rhonda. I hope your dizziness improves soon. Sending you prayers and blessings in the New Year. Jane

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  90. Hello Rhonda, my sister gave me your book for my birthday, as she knows I love the style of life you live and I try on my small yard. It must have been a shock to you and your family. Having been a Registered nurse for nearly 30 years I have spent time on Oncology wards and always tried to empathise. However on the 2nd of April this year I was diagnosed with CML (Chronic Myloid Leukemia) and I think the Doctor had more difficulties. I'm not doing the comparing thing, because it is just the way the cards are played. It's how you play your hand. May sound Lame however read the book "The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch. Unfortunately he had one of the worst, pancreatic cancer and didn't survive. But I think when my Heamatology Doctor said "If you're going to get Leukeamia this the one to get". It is true with the condition you have, and the side effects are really the risk, a broken hip etc is more to worry about. I hope you take this as it is meant, Nurses have a black humour that helps them deal with the difficult times with patients they have got close to. Maybe we should hold hands to balance ourselves, as a few months after I required Brain surgery to have a Shunt put in. I had a very attractive Mohawke haircut. Now as the year comes to an end I'm just getting my head around it, as i'm a Plantaholic and like you cannot garden anymore. I met a man who has had what I have for 40 years and the medication cost $5000 dollars. I'm glad I got it now as its just under $6.00. Please forgive my verbal diahhrea. I send you positive thoughts to you and Hanno. Been to Instagram and hated it. You know Rhonda what I miss are going to the postbox and get a long letter from family or friends, its all either emails or texts. Give me cards or family letters that tell a story, your blog although it is on the internet is more like a letter and I have missed yours. Now Rhonda continue how you and your Hanno need to live and enjoy what you can do, thinking positive thoughts and if you need a hand to hold from reading your Blog you have many people who love you.

    Love and best thought

    Kamryn

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  91. Dear Rhonda,

    I am sending you my good wishes and love. Sorry to hear about the tumour and the way it is making you feel. Let's hope you feel better soon. All the very best to you, Hanno and your family for 2019. Ronnie XX

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  92. Sending much love from the uk and hoping your lovely calm way of life will ground and comfort you the way it does your readers xxxxx

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  93. Hello again. Well....that is some news and a half now! The most amazing part of your post, to me anyway, is your positive attitude to life, that is, work with it and do the best you can right now. Your sewing is beautiful. All in all, it is lovely to visit your blog again. Take care of you, Brigitte.

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  94. Sending best wishes to you and your family for a Happy and healthy 2019. May all go well xx

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  95. Hi Rhonda, so lovely to have you back. Wishing you and Hanno all the best with your health. I think at a time like this going back to blogging would be such a help to you - just now and then would be enough, don't kill yourself over it. You know all of your readers are rooting for you, so a happy new year to you and your family xxx

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  96. Dear Rhonda,
    Such mixed feelings, so glad when your blog entry came and so very sad about that tumour. Still, as you say, it may not change in any way. It´s enough with the discomfort it´s already causing you. If it should come to it, it´s wonderful to know that they now can do amazing things with radiotherapy.
    I still find myself referring to your blog for recipes and how-to articles. Such a treasure trove built up from years of experience.

    You will be in my thoughts now even more than before. You know how you are loved and valued by thousands around the world. All my very best wishes to you and Hanno for a happy New Year 2019.

    Ramona/Sweden xx

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  97. It's so good to see you back but I'm sorry about your news. You sound positive as always and I'm glad you are still able to enjoy your garden with a bit of assistance. The bags and bunnies you made are adorable! Sending you good wishes from England and wishing you and your family a happy and healthy 2019.
    Rachel xx

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  98. Hi Rhonda,
    All our love and best wishes for improved health or at least stability.
    Thank you for sharing this important part of your personal life with all of us.
    I often think of you and really miss catching up and reading what you and Hanno are up to.
    Take care, hugs for health and happiness. xxxx
    Cheers
    Jane.

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  99. It is so good to hear from you! I am sorry to hear about your brain tumor. Hopefully it will not grow any and I pray that it even shrinks. Take good care of your self.
    The bunny bags are adorable. I am sure you will have two very delighted little girls. :-) I look forward to hearing from you again.

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  100. Prayers, love, and thankfulness for all you've given to all of us!!

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  101. I’m so sorry to hear of your medical condition Rhonda and hope that it remains manageable into the future too. Your outlook is a positive one , thinking of the practicalities to help things still work for you in the new situation you find yourself in . It was lovely to see you though on the blog . I follow Instagram but somehow this place seems just better!! ASimple Home was my much wanted Xmas gift and I have been spending recent days enjoying starting to plan my new year. It feels like I can drop in on you for some words of encouragement any time I like !

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  102. I have visited once a week to see if you make any posts. I am thrilled to see you back. You are a friend I've never met but I care about you and Hanno and your family as I have followed for many years now. Love & prayers for you! Blessings in the new year.

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  103. thanks for sharing your update (like you, i don't do insta, and i don't do facebook). so glad you at least know it's not malignant, and wishing the best for you and hanno in the new year. and many thanks for all the weekend reads you've sent us over time - even though i'm just a lurker, i learn so much from your blog. --suz in ohio/usa

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  104. Sorry to hear your news but good that it is non-malignant and you can continue to enjoy your life with a few modifications. My best friend's mother had a meningioma and her consultant told her if you have to have one, that's the one to have. She did eventually have surgery on hers after a number of years and was back to good health in under six months, no lasting effects at all. She's 30 years my senior, travels the world and out-parties me.

    My MIL has issue with dizziness when she bends down to garden so this year we're having some raised beds made for her at waist height so she can grow some flowers. I seem to recall you had raised beds before, back in your aquaculture days (and grew some rather lovely Mortgage Lifter tomatoes - I've never forgotten those!). Perhaps Hanno can move to raised or vertical beds?

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  105. Missed you. Hope your health improves, or at least doesn't get worse.

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  106. Cyber hugs for my clever, kind, resourceful and brave friend and mentor. You have always been a wonderful example for me and your dignity and practicality when faced with this diagnosis is just another fine example of how to deal with life. Hugs for Hanno too.
    Love SunnyMidnight (Maureen)

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  107. Hello, beautiful girl. You have always had a great, positive attitude, which you know is vital for healing. This is a smart thing you are doing with the blog. You will have a lot of people praying for you and sending good wishes. Now is the time to be a little lazy and to get lots of sleep and rest. Sleep is also very healing. God bless you.

    Shell

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  108. Wishing you and your family the best in 2019.

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  109. So very nice to see you post, I have missed your blog very much . Sorry to hear of your health issues and pray things stay stable for you . All the best for 2019 ♥️

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  110. Hello, Rhonda. It sounds like you had a lovely simple xmas with your family. I love the little gifts you have made, so very cute! I am sorry to read of the brain tumour. As I read your words about it, I heard your practical attitude to getting on with things and adjusting. It's wonderful that you have your Hanno and family and friends like Morag, that love and care that encircles you. I think that makes a world of difference in life. Much love to you. Meg Xx

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  111. Oh dear Rhonda, I'm so sorry to hear your news. But I am very glad it is benign and lets hope it stays exactly put and gives you no further hassle.

    Your sewing is beautiful, and I'm sure they will be treasured items of the little people they were made for.

    I too prefer the space of my blog over Instagram. My photographs do not compare to the thousands they are lined up against. I am not shiny, and Instagram seems very shiny to me. I enjoy browsing the beautiful images, but they are tucked between advertising and all kinds of things, where as my blog is simply mine. It is quiet there and I like that.

    Wishing you and Hanno improved and stable health for the new year, lots of time spent with those you love and deep contentment in your beautiful home.

    Much love,
    Em
    xx

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  112. Sorry to hear that you have a non-malignant brain tumour, and I hope that it doesn't worsen and that you can manage your life without it affecting you too much. I have a friend who also has this, and you wouldn't know unless she told you.

    Love the little purse and the rabbit. I have a book of patterns for a similar rabbit and clothing and hope to start that in the New Year.

    All the best for you and Hanno and your lovely family.

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  113. So sorry to learn of your health issues but admire your steadfast attitude.
    Love to you and Hanno

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  114. Wishing you and Hanno all the best of health and happiness for the coming year ahead. My thoughts and love go out to you both.

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  115. There is not much I can add to the love, respect and best wishes already voiced. I just wish to add my thanks for your generous sharing of your life which has helped me change for the better.

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  116. Sorry to hear about your health worries Rhonda however it sounds like you are in good hands. Spending time with family at Christmas and enjoying your hobbies - watching the cricket is I'm sure what the Doctor ordered. Here's to enjoying everyday and doing the things that you love the most. Regards Kathy, Brisbane

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  117. Rhonda, sorry your going through this but if you have a tumor that is the best kind. I had one removed in 1998, it was the size of an orange. I had no idea until it was shutting off my blood supply.My head hurt so bad I couldn't move, all in the matter of a few days. Everything went fine. it was 20 yrs ago. I'm doing fine as I know you will also. Prayers to you.

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  118. I am so glad you came back here to let our little community know about your health. I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers. I remember you saying once that ageing is not for wimps and you were so right. The gifts are simply delightful and I am sure the little girls will be pleased. Happy New Year!

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  119. Love to you and Hanno. So very lovely to see you back on your blog. You are treasured by many.
    NZ Ingrid

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  120. Rhonda, My thoughts are with you. I have been so grateful for your blog, it literally has changed my life. Using homemade things like cleaning products, making my own dish cloths, using and reusing things. But most importantly paring my life (an ongoing process as ever) down to simplicity and simple living. It has transformed my life just in time, and I am so grateful for your generous heart to share your wisdom and knowledge. My thoughts are with both of you as you go on this journey. May you find wisdom in making what ever choice you must make to battle this disease. Love and hugs!

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  121. Best of luck and I am sending many prayers and good thoughts your way, Rhonda. You have given me and others so much in the way of living our lives and getting great things out of life itself. Thank you, and I will be checking in now and again hoping to read more of your wisdom. You have a lot of people here for you.

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  122. Thanks for sharing Rhonda, all my thoughts, wishes etc have already been said many times over by other followers above. I only wanted to add that we now have chairs and stools etc scattered around our garden simply to sit and work, also raised beds and a walking stick for stability. Thinking of you with positivity. Carol,

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  123. Serenity to accept things I can't change
    Courage to change what I can
    Wisdom to know the difference
    Living one day at a time
    Enjoying one moment at a time.....

    All this and more I wish for you...❤️

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  124. Thanks for sharing your personal health problems and I hope everything goes well for you. Best wishes for 2019.

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  125. Dear Rhonda,
    Lovely to hear from you and thanks for sharing about your diagnosis.

    All the best to you and Hanno and I hope you have a happy and healthy 2019.

    Helen from WA

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  126. So lovely to see Down to Earth pop up on my screen again. Health is one of those things that crops up more as we get older - you're a strong lady and you'll deal with it. So helpful to hear about you doctor's wife - anything she can do.....! Love to you both. x

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  127. I am so sorry to hear this news, but I am glad it is benign and that you have a plan in place with a doctor you trust. As always, you seem to be handling things with determination and practicality which is very admirable. Hugs and love to you and Hanno and wishes for a happy and healthy 2019.

    Denise (schauermom)

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  128. It was such a lovely surprise to see a new post! So sorry to hear about your medical issue but if it's any consolation - one of my sisters has had a benign brain tumour for many years and there has been no change. One brother did have to have surgery a couple of years ago for a benign brain tumour and although it was a few months for recovery it went well and he now lives a normal life (with checkups a couple of times a year). I am sure that you and your doctors will find the best solution for you so all the best to you, Hanno and your family in the New Year.
    I hope that you will feel up to the occasional post as it is always lovely to hear from you.

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  129. Sorry to hear of your health issues Rhonda. But yet again you are such an example to us all in your acceptance, positivity and practical way of dealing with it. May you and Hanno continue to have many happy and content days ahead. xx

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  130. Lovely to hear from you again Rhonda, and my thoughts and prayers go out to you. It is always a shock to be told news like this, but then we rationalise, assess the information and move on as you are doing. I'm sure your beautiful attitude and simple way of life will help with your day to day living. All the best and I look forward to reading future posts.

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  131. I love your attitude and positivity. May 2019 bless you and yours with much happiness, love and joy.

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  132. Hi Rhonda,

    I was delighted to see a new post from you until I read of your health problems. My heart goes out to you dear friend, and to Hanno also. I, too, have balance problems, from bad feet, but am learning to live with it, as I'm sure you will too, being such a strong lady.

    I wish you both every blessing for 2019 and strength to carry on. Looking forward to hearing from you occasionally.

    God bless.
    Love from Lyn in northern New South Wales.

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  133. I've prayed for you.
    Carthage, Missouri, USA

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  134. Sorry to hear about your recent health problems, but I'm so happy my favorite blogger is back!
    Praying for you.

    T. M.
    Florida, USA

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  135. It was such a treat to find a new post from you although I’m sorry to hear about your health problems. You’ve been a huge support to me and I thank you sincerely for the thought and kindness that goes into everything you say. Wishing you and Hanno the best possible year in 2019. Kind regards, Fay in Qld

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  136. Lovely to read a post from you again, I have really missed you. I am sorry you have been unwell and will pray that all remains stable for you. Such cute little gifts you have made I'm sure they will be treasured. Thank you for sharing with us. Happy New Year to you Hanno and all your family. xx

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  137. I feel you’re going to be fine....the blogging world just isn’t the same without you in it😞
    Looking forward to a brighter New Year 🎊
    Hughugs

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  138. What a delight it is to see you posting again and will look forward to hearing from you whenever possible. As my favorite blogger, you have truly been missed. I am so sorry to hear of your health problems, but am lifting you and your family in prayer. Wishing you all a beautiful 2019.

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  139. I cannot even tell you the joy I felt when I saw you posted again. In a place where I feel quite alone, I found you, your blog and it made me feel welcomed and comforted. I will pray for you and Hanno.

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  140. What a joy to see you are posting! I hope the tumor stays exactly where it is and allows you to live the life you want.
    The gifts you made are so charming! I hoped the little ladies loved them. Happy New year to you!
    XO

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  141. Sending you lots of love and well wishes during this difficult time. x

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  142. So glad to read your blog. I've missed you. Hope you continue to do well.

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  143. Hi Rhonda, so glad you're back blogging again. I love reading your posts. My prayers are with you for stable health. Happy New Year!!

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  144. Hello Rhonda! It's good to hear from you again, I really appreciate the update, although I'm sure it was tough to write. I'll be praying for you. I'm glad you've found a way to keep on gardening, I know how much you love it! May this new year bring good news there and lots of wonderful times with family and friends. Hugs, Loni

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  145. I'm glad you're back! I so missed your posts. Lots of prayers for a good 2019 for you and Hanno.

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  146. Sorry to hear about your health. Delighted to have you back blogging again. Wishing you and Hanno health and happiness in 2019. Jean

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  147. I was sure suprised to come back from my Christmas travels and see posts from you! I've read them all with delight--though this one with pangs of concern, too. I hope your condition allows you to carry on your full and value-driven life for many, many years to come. I'm thankful you have family close by, too. What a blessing in times of joy and trial!

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  148. I just discovered today that you're back to posting periodically. I'm so grateful! Your blog has been a highlight for many years. Wishing you the best outcome regarding your and Hanno's health. May you be blessed for all that you shared and for how deeply you've encouraged us all.

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  149. Hello Rhonda
    Sorry my message is so late, I did try from a different device a couple of weeks ago and I wasn't sure it worked and I see now it hasn't reached you. Sorry to hear about your dizziness, that is an awful feeling. I really hope for you that's it settles down and that you don't need any treatment. Thank you for confiding in us. The Maggie rabbits are just lovely and I'm glad to see you back here, you write so beautifully and can fit much more in your blog posts!
    Amanda

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  150. You're back! I am sorry to hear about your health problems. Not many folks know this either, but I was diagnosed with a grade 1 meningioma on my optic nerve a couple years ago. I opted for a craniotomy and they were able to get a bit of it, but did not go further so that they would not damaged my eyesight in that eye too badly. A year later it did grow slightly, about 2 mm, and they did 5-1/2 weeks with 28 low dose treatments of radiation. This year I'm happy to report its stable. :) My eyesight is a little better but will never improve totally in that eye. When I want to look 25 again, I just close my left eye. My right eye sees "soft focus".

    Hopefully, they can maybe shrink it down just a bit to help with the dizziness. They can do fabulous things now in medicine.

    Best Wishes!

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  151. Here it is January...have not checked in many weeks...our family is in a terrible crisis too. Thank you for updating...and I wish you all the best in your health situation. Thanks for describing it as well...my husband has been having similar issues for a long time now...maybe this is his situation? Thanks for perhaps something to look into for him too. Appreciate the information. Elizabeth

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  152. Oh, goodness! I got all excited when I scrolled back to see you had started posting again but got a shock when I read your news. I do hope you are okay, Rhonda. Such a scary thing to contend with especially seeing you won't be having immediate treatment. It is so lovely to have your blog back on my blog roll - even if I've been absent from posting since last October. I love to keep updated and I see you've done a few posts so that will be some of my weekend reading as I'm home alone this weekend - yay! Take care dear lady! xxx

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  153. I cannot tell you how glad I am to see you back on the blog. I didn't know you were posting again and just came to your site in order to go to a cozy, familiar place and there you were! I'm sorry about your health problem but thankful that it is not malignant. I actually had tears because you are back and ok. Please don't leave us again, Rhonda; we love you!

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