Thursday, August 17, 2017


This is a long post, but I've been gone for about 6 months and want to explain...

I have been tired. Like hard to get out of bed, brain fog, making stupid mistakes, zoning in front of the t.v. even when the t.v. is off, kind of tired.

My husband tells me it is because we have never been this old. I struggled to get up in the morning and make it to work close to on-time, I wasn't doing my share of the work around the house. I have never been an overly energetic person. Anyone who knows me I am in bed by 8:30-9:00 every night, but I used to open my eyes at 5:00 am, be rested and bounce out of bed and be cheerful and ready for the day. Not now.

So, I was looking for something to help me. I had noticed that I was getting a lot of stomach aches and heartburn. I cut out milk, I cut out eggs, I cut out wheat - BINGO! That really helped so I cut out all grains for three months and would add them back to see if I reacted to them. I also came across the Ketogenic diet and decided to try that for 6 weeks to see how I felt. I did start to feel more energetic so I purchased a couple cook books and made the switch. (Now, I am not advocating this for everyone, we all have our own opinions on what is healthy, what works for us, and our bodies are all different. This is just working for me right now. And, I still bake for my family and my across the street neighbors so no hating when you see a variety of things coming out of my kitchen).

I was feeling a bit better, I was up in the morning and ready to head back to 5:00 bootcamp (I never went back consistently after my hip surgery in 2015 and I miss it). So, it's spring time and after travel season is when I take care of things like my yearly dr. appt., the dentist, the eye doctor. Well, my dr. asked when I had my last mammogram.

"I had one about 3 years ago, I think." I replied
"Really, because there is nothing in your chart." she said. "Did you go someplace else for it?"
"No, I always go here and I always do a monthly self check everything is good."

So, she ordered one and the center called to schedule and it was in my mind to do it, so I called back for my appointment.

When I went in, I noticed on my paperwork it had been 8 years and 9 months since my last mammogram! Oops. Good thing I was there now.  I had my girls squished and I figured I was done for another year...and yes, I would be better about getting in more consistently, like every other year or so.

Well, I got a call back. Something just didn't look right. So I went in for a second mammogram and an ultrasound. No biggie. Breast cancer doesn't run in my family, I have no lumps or bumps, I'm very healthy, nothing to worry about.

But there was.

There was an " 2 cm area of suspicion" that needed to be biopsied. We did the biopsy. Again, I really didn't think much of it. I have dense, fibrous tissue (I know TMI) and lots of friends have had biopsies that were nothing. Better be safe than sorry, nothing to worry about.

But there was.

I had ductal carcinoma in situ or DCIS. I had an early stage but fast growing kind. The treatment was laid out for me; lumpectomy and radiation, perhaps an estrogen reducing medication. I met with the radiologist (is that what the doctor that gives radiation is called?), I met with the oncologist, I met with the surgeon. She wanted a better look and ordered an MRI and we scheduled the lumpectomy. I had an MRI, I got a call back, I had another biopsy, I had more cancer a 6.7 X 5 cm area. Now we were talking mastectomy - maybe, chemo - maybe, lymph nodes involved? I had the second biopsy we got the results on a Monday afternoon - more cancer. Wednesday morning I had a mastectomy. Pathology came back and I did NOT have invasive cancer and my lymph nodes were not impacted - so no chemo, and the cancer was impacted so little by estrogen I didn't have to take that medication. So I am cancer free now and other than being lopsided - which will get fixed soon - I am in great health!

Now, keep in mind this all happened in the span of 6 weeks, it was kind of a whirlwind. Someone will tell me I am a cancer survivor but it doesn't feel that way because it all happened to fast that I never fully grasped that I had cancer, and now it is gone and I don't have any further treatments, it doesn't seem real. Don't get me wrong, I have been a hot mess the last 3 months (feel very sorry for my dear husband) and facing the mirror with one breast removed has been harder than I can even put into words, but today I stand here a healthy, cancer free, slightly lopsided woman.  YAHOO!

So, why all this info? Because...
It happened to me and I have a compulsion to share way too much on my blog.
I want every woman out there to do their monthly self checks and mammograms on the regular, as suggested by your doctor.
I don't want to hear any haters when my food choices are very different than your choices.  If you don't like the recipes I post, don't read my blog or just skip that recipe.  You get to choose (I love choices don't you?)

So there you have it.  I've been gone for a while but I'm back.

Some of the flowers I received while recovering from surgery.
1 year ago:     Introducing Grayson Zachary
3 years ago:    Blackberry Cheesecake
5 years ago:    Salmon Cakes

August 17, 2017  Sunrise 5:45 am Sunset 10:01 pm  Temp. H 59/ L 42°F

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

A Taste of the Islands

We were sitting at the table at the Seattle kids' house.  We were there for a 3 day weekend to visit the grand baby (and the Curly haired boy and the DIL).  My husband looks lovingly across the table and states...

"Wow honey, you need some lotion on your old lady chest."
And people wonder why I drink.

A taste of the Islands Champagne

1.5 oz pineapple juice
.5 oz. coconut creme

Mix pineapple juice and coconut creme until combined.  Pour into champagne glass, top with 3-4 oz. champagne.  Enjoy and forget the stupid things your husband says to you.

1 year ago:   Celery Salty Dog and the Repeating Conversation
3 years ago:  Peach Skillet Cobbler
5 years ago:  Ciopinno and -50

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Movie on the Plane and Chocolate Mousse

It started out as an innocent dinner conversation. We were talking about bear maulings and the Montana man who got mauled and then walked 3 miles and then posted on Facebook, because he really wasn't in a hurry to get to the hospital for the 8 hours of stitches he needed...

Then it moved to the movie The Revenant and the bear mauling in that movie. I said I never saw it, it was too gory and sad and I wasn't allowed.

Dave said, "You saw it because I saw it and I don't go to the movie with anyone but you."
"Nope, " I corrected him, "I never saw it."
"You did too see it, we even sat at the very top in the middle."
"Dave," I replied, "We always sit at the very top in the middle.  I didn't see the movie."

Now that would have been fine, him thinking I saw it and me knowing I didn't, but then he had to throw in, "It was last December, and you were so drugged up from your hip surgery you just don't remember."

That got me to second guessing myself. Well crap, maybe I did see it and I just forgot. Could it be? No, I remember movies and I would have remembered that movie. And, if it was so close to my surgery that I was that drugged, Dave wouldn't have taken me to the movie or let me walk up all the stairs to the very top....still...

I sat through the rest of the meal wondering if I had indeed forgotten the whole movie.

And then it hit me.

"You saw it on the airplane." I stated.

The look on his face was priceless. I was right and he knew it, and he knew he had gone just a little too far with the "your were so drugged" comments.

So, while I won't rub his face in it forever, I will for a while. I was right, he was wrong (one in a row) and I didn't see the movie. And I will celebrate with chocolate!

Orange Chocolate Mousse
adapted from Eating Well Jan/Feb 2017

1 Tbsp. Grand Mariner or Triple Sec
1 Tbsp. low fat milk
3/4 tsp. gelatin
3 oz good bittersweet chocolate, chopped
4 large eggs, separated
4 Tbsp. sugar, divided
1/8 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla extract

Whipped cream and chocolate shavings for garnish, optional

Combine Grand Mariner and milk in a small bowl, sprinkle gelatin on top and let stand to soften.

Place chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave on hight for 1 minutes.  Stir well, then continue to  heat in 30 second increments on hight until tow-thirds of the chocolate has melted, stirring well after each burst.

Bring 1 inch water to a bare simmer in a medium saucepan.  combine egg yolks, 3 tbsp. sugar and salt in a metal bowl large enough to rest in the pan without touching the water.  Set the bowl over the water and whisk constantly until the sugar dissolves, 1 to 2 minutes.  Add the gelatin mixture and whisk until it dissolves, about 1 minutes.  Remove from heat; whisk in the chocolate and vanilla.  

Beat egg whites in a clean large bowl with and electric mixer on high until soft peaks form  Add the last 1 Tbsp. sugar and continue beating until the mixture holds stiff shiny peaks.

Whisk on-fourth of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture until smooth.  With a rubber spatula, gently fold the remaining egg whites into the chocolate mixture just until incorporated.  Divide among 8 dessert dishes (about 1/2 cup each).

Cover and refrigerate until set, at least 2 hours.  Serve garnished with whipped cream and chocolate shavings, if desired.

(about 115 cals. each)

January 4, 2017  Sunrise 10:49 am  Sunset 3:03 pm  Temp H 17/ L 6˚F

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Happy New Year!

So, the end of 2016 was kind of a shit show.

Dave had surgery on his shoulder to take care of some bone spurs, nothing damaged just old people stuff. Two weeks after surgery, he went to pick up a friend at the airport, picked up a cooler and broke the bone they had carved the spurs off in his shoulder.

I, meanwhile, was in Seattle getting the black plague from the Curly Haired Boy and the DIL. I came home sick and stayed that way for three weeks. Two antibiotics, two steroids, multiple breathing treatments at the clinic, and a new inhaler (because I used up the other new one) later, I'm better but still not well.

We stayed home for New Year's Eve, played cards and just tried to squeak into the new year unnoticed and we got a text from my best friend's husband. My Saturday morning coffee mate was in Colorado visiting her Grandson, and daughter, and fell into the hole of the crawl space. She shattered her knee, broke two bones in her leg, and was in surgery.  Her husband was trying to figure out a house sitter for their dogs and get on a plane down to Colorado.

My kids offered to house sit so that was one worry off his mind and he made his plane reservations and is on his way.

We hope 2017 is a little kinder.

Well, I got up on the new year's first morning, made coffee, made a fire, got the dogs their breakfast and settled into a little Facebook scrolling. All was quiet and warm. I got up for a refill on my coffee, glanced into the living room and saw this...
Lily on the sofa, that is not a good dog.

She knows she isn't allowed on the sofa, but the little dogs got a sofa for Christmas and I guess she was just feeling a little left out.
Hershey and Riley have the best seat in the house.

I didn't want to make too much of a fuss, 2016 could still be lurking in the shadows, so I just sat down and drank my second cup of coffee.  

So here is to a kinder 2017.  I hope your household finds no illness that lingers, no broken bones, and no dogs on the sofa (unless they are allowed).

January 1, 2017