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  • a happy, ordinary, middle-aged, suburban woman who paints odd pictures, gardens in a straw hat, lives with the love of her life, is owned by one cat and the ghosts of several others, and walks a little funny 'cause she has a fake leg. She started this website because there's more to life than what we lose, and we need to let each other know what's possible, even if it's only a happy, ordinary life.

November 2011

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Mouthwatering post, my friend!

I just finished baking peach scones (done late at night to prevent overheating house). Maybe we are on the same peach wavelength.

Last week I skipped an MRI completely (or perhaps just delayed it until it becomes an emergency) because of the IV issue. What a pain!! I am not super-scared of needles, but I do hate that my arms seem to have lost all their veins and getting an IV going is quite a procedure--typically involving numerous deep-probing pokes. Gah.

(And on a side note that will have me wondering why the hell I ever said this on the Internets, I've had this weird period synchronicity with my infection outbreaks that's really had me mystified. I think it's my body's way of making sure that all the drama is compressed into the shortest possible time window. Double Gah.)

I hope you get the blueberries tomorrow (but if not, peach pie is sweet solace)--fingers crossed for 'ya over here! :)


"my body's way of making sure that all the drama is compressed into the shortest possible time window"

Yes! And humiliation, too! Because lying around in a hospital johnny and occasionally having to toilet oneself in front of other people just isn't humiliating enough, apparently. It also needs to be messy. And being terrified for one's life? Not enough of an emotional slam all by itself, apparently! There must also be hormonal fluctuations, lots of hormonal fluctuations! And low-grade fever! And hideous cramps! Yes! Because otherwise, how would we know we were miserable, right?

As you said, gah.

I love, love, love peach pie, peach jam, peach anything. I think I actually crave baked peaches subconsciously at all times, so it takes only a very small suggestion and even a bag of frozen peach slices to set me off. Scones you say? Mmmm...maybe next... ;)

These were white peaches and white nectarines which taste more sugary, less purely peachy/nectariney, so the raspberries were an essential component of the flavor palette here. Pie needs a little tartness.

It's not as hot here as it is where you are, but the humidity is already close to 80%. I shall bathe and see if I have enough strength to drag my butt through this sauna and up the big hill toward blueberry heaven. I'm pretty damn tired, though, so we'll see. Thanks for your good wishes.



Well, I fell asleep in the bathtub, so I guess that's that for today. Fortunately, there should be more blueberries tomorrow...fingers crossed...


What a sucky day - except for the salad and pie. You make me want to go bake. Seems unfair to have all this fun and then have to go get poked more in order to find out more unpalatable news. feh :-(

Sending good thoughts your way.

The Goldfish

We seem to be living on salad and quiche at the moment; quiches are good for sticking anything in which is about to go bad. And we're having quite a bit of success keeping shop-bought lettuce going by slicing off the bottom and sitting it in a pot of water.

There are only two of us but a great proportion of the meals we eat are things we cooked in bulk, split up and froze. Or there are components; we have bolognese with vegetables and quorn ready any time we want spagbol, lazagne or similar.

I love the use of the word "zucchini" instead of the British "courgette". much prettier. But some of those squashes are unlike anything I've ever set eyes on.

Hope they find a vein at their next attempt. And hope you have more energy today.


Thinking of you lots, and lots and lots. Going to go eat something yummy and healthy now and think about you some more. Wish I could come over and distract you. ;-)


So much yuck and yum - though mostly yum. Hope the MRIs went okay, and hope the cooler/drier air is being good to you.

Sugared Harpy

"She died while menstruating"

Would you not want to be friends with the person? I WOULD.

HA! Pie! God, I love pie. I do, ahem, make my own crust but you can blame Julia Childs for that. Her recipe is supreme and I do it in the food processor. Carbon footprint? Mama and her friends need pie.

YOUR pie looks heavenly!!

(That sounds dirty.)


Leslie: Thank you. Pie makes everything better.

Goldfish: Yes, this is exactly the kind of cooking I'm talking about. And personally, I'm quite fond of Quorn, but I can't get my true love even to taste it. Also, what's funny to me here is that "courgette" sounds way prettier than "zucchini" to my ear because I grew up hearing "zucchini." It's all in what is exotic to the hearer, I guess.

They did in fact find a vein. Specifically, Vicky at the Interventional Radiology department found a vein, and she got it in one poke, and she didn't even have to use the ultrasound machine. She is magic. No one has gotten me in just one poke in, gad, years and years. No one. Not for an IV or injection.

All hail Vicky, Goddess of the Shining Needle.

Laurie: I just wish you could have come over and had a slice of that pie! :)

Leslee: Yes, so far, though there's been a lot of yikes lately, my life really is mostly yum. :)

Melissa of Sugared Harpy: As my true love has pointed out, it would be the headstone on the grave that would have no man coming within a hundred yards of it, ever. hahahaha

I used to make my own crust when I was younger and more patient and had a far bigger kitchen and my mother's power tools (e.g., countertop mixer). Now I live in a place with counters covered with stuff, the toaster, the cat food collection, the knife rack, coffeemaker, waffle baker, scale, blender, bread box, goodie basket, spoon pitcher, bamboo tester bottle, ice cream maker I still haven't learned how to use... There is no room for a countertop mixer. Until I have space for such a thing, and still space to actually roll the dough out as well, it's store bought for me. It comes out okay made without fancy electric equipment, but it's just not fun, and the store-bought is really good enough. I can't remember the brand I've been using right now, but it tastes fine and I think it's only mildly carcinogenic.

Pie is never dirty. Pie is pure. :)

kathy a.

oh, i'm late to the party! some lovely food you made, there.

(((( sara )))) the cancer sucks. the hormones suck. thinking of you.


OMG, I want that pie! What an amazing post with all the pix and clear instructions. You feel like crap and have low energy, but you've put together a funny, clear and generous post. Thanks for that. The pie pix were a bit tortuous, though. Having a bit of a sugar craving right now and all I have in the house is chocolate soy milk. BORING.

I'm glad to hear about the nurse with the needle proficiency. I've had my share of missed veins and fluid going into the tissue... so I deeply appreciate the accuracy and skill you described. Could you pre-book her for any other needles??

What a sweet man to go get you your blueberries. Commercial berries have no flavour at all. I'm sorry you're dealing with so much hard stuff. Small things like bursting, fresh blueberries help just a little bit, no?


Thanks, Kathy A. Yeah, all that sucks, but pie remains one of the great goodnesses, as are fresh veggies in summer. :)

Donimo, yes fresh, local, organic blueberries are still magic and make everything better. And yes, I will be asking for Vicky again in the future. I am hoping not to have to go back and have another MRI before March 2009 when, if I'm still alive and not apparently dying yet, I shall be going in for another brain checkup. I hope she still works there!

If you are able, you might try making pancakes using chocolate soy milk sometime instead of regular milk or plain soy. Mmm...fried chocolate tinged batter...not boring. :)

I hope you've soothed your sweet tooth by now.


I have noticed a history of food posts, which I am assuming is food as comfort and practical, or maybe you like eating? Usually the mad rush FOR the certain types of food ends with menstration, or does yours keep going?

I just had to post because honestly no one really talks about the bio aspects of being ill or disabilities or illnesses and that is one of them, and like the rest of the Medico Machine, we sick people are supposed to be robots I think and not have bio issues which might slow down an MRI (like having a seizure).

I say this becuase I was in the disabled toilet yesterday and people kept coming to see if the "big nice empty toilet is free" (how AB people view the disabled toilet) and I used to be the "get in, get it done fast and get out type" now with autonomic retention and a non, functioning bowel, things take...longer, so I feel like screaming at the feet waiting, "Look Parkinson's has it and so do I, I have to live with it and now so do you." Which actually I might do if they pulled me out of the MRI with a nice menses blood stain on the hospital gown. Sorry, this was sort of a side topic to your food thing, but one I could relate to and since no one talks biology, and you did, sorry, can o worms opens on YOU!


Elizabeth, there is no talking about life or why to keep it without talking about food. I say this even as my own digestion and strength deteriorate. Fact is, I'm still here, and regardless of how much I can eat and digest myself, maintaining the food supply here is still part of my job as the member of this household who doesn't leave the house for nine or ten hours a day to bring in the cash that pays for it all. So this post explains part of how I'm managing that, and I hope it and some of the comments others have offered will not only help people celebrate, nay, wallow in all the beautiful and healthful edible treasures of their own lives while they are present and still accessible to them but also give still other readers some useful ideas.

I feel no can of worms. I do have a funny story for you, though, not funny "ha-ha," more funny in a "yeah, huh" kind of way. While visiting the POOI last month, it came to pass as it often does that I had to avail myself of the restroom. Since it is a POOI and not a regular hospital or a restaurant or other ordinary public venue, there is a certain awareness in place, and so all the restroom stalls are handicapped-accessible. However, the toilets are the kind which flush automatically when something passes in front of a strategically placed "eye."

Where I come from (California), it is (or was) illegal not to offer flushable, hygienic paper seat covers if you have a public restroom. No such law is in place in Massachusetts, and when I pointed out how disgusting I found this to a longtime resident, she was quite perplexed and wanted to know why. However, as I said, at the POOI a certain consciousness of possibilities is in play, so there are paper seat covers on offer in the restroom stalls.

To use a toilet, I have to take off not just my pants and undergarments but also my artificial leg. It is strategically intelligent to do this while standing in front of the toilet, poised to sit. However, it takes so long to do that that the automatic eye mechanism will flush the toilet two or three times before my ass hits the seat, and thus it is almost impossible for me to use a hygienic paper seat cover in the posh, fully accessible restroom unless I take off my pants and underpants, take off my leg, and then unfold a paper seat cover and plaster it to my ass before sitting down.

While complimenting both the accessibility and the presence of the paper seat covers, I pointed this out to a fully-limbed, able-bodied POOI worker emerging from the other stall. "Huh," she said. "I never thought of that."

"Of course not," I told her. "No one thinks of these things until something happens to make them think of these things, like, for example, actually becoming disabled."

It's just how things are. And you're right; it's because there just isn't enough open talk about how all that works. We're always talking about access, but I think we need to talk -- and get others to think -- a little more about evacuation, too!

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