Spoonie Retirement – Life, love and immunity in the time of Covid – part 2

For our JusJoJan and SoCS prompt: Your prompt for #JusJoJan and Stream of Consciousness Saturday is: “close eyes and point.” When you’re ready to write your post, open a book, a newspaper, or whatever is handy and close your eyes and point. Whatever word or picture your finger lands on, make that the basis of your SoCS/JusJoJan post. Enjoy! “Advantages”

One of the advantages of retirement is the extra time you have to invest in those projects you’ve been putting off. Of course, that’s also the greatest disadvantage of spoonie retirement, all that time stretching out before you, time to study subjects long ago forsaken in the name of “making a living.” Time to tackle the lifestyle changes and projects you have planned to do for years but hadn’t the time. And, naturally it also gives you lots of time to lament that spoonie reality of now having time but lacking energy, strength and resources to perform those studies, projects, and lifestyle changes. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining (well maybe a little *sniffle, sniffle*) I’m happy with my lot in life, although not particularly energetic.

I took some time measurements this week and found out that it takes me every bit of 1.25 hours every morning just to deal with basic medical treatments of a variety of the manifestations of my disease(s), all of which are repeated again at the end of the day. So that’s 2.5 hours out of my day right there. Needless to say anything that can save me a few steps (or a few bucks) or increase my energy level even a bit, I’m game for a try.

Last week I mixed up a batch of immunity tea blend and this week I brewed up a pot, added a touch of manuka honey and used it for an immunity boosting tonic. I cannot really say as to the effectiveness of it but I haven’t gotten sick but I do seem to be recovering from multiple minor injuries better than I expected and hey it tastes good, has no known side effects what’s not to like right? I say bring back the hippy dippy teas of my childhood! Now for those of you who lack the energy or resources to make your own tea blend, there are lots of immunity boosting teas on the market. I don’t generally use them because many include echinacea which I don’t use (autoimmune diseases …. duh). Whether using this blend or a store purchased one, always make sure there are no contraindicated ingredients based on your particular spoonieness. With that said, here is Farren’s “Immunity Tisane” recipe. Yes … Farren is a dear and yes it’s a tisane since it doesn’t actually contain leaves of the Camellia Sinensis (tea plant).

Farren’s Magic Immunity Tisane

1/4 Cup dried hibiscus flower
1/4 Cup dried elderberries
1/4 Cup rose hips (I buy whole and crush them with the flat of a knife)
1/4 Cup dried apple bits (very small)
2 Tablespoons finely chopped crystalized ginger (is what I had on hand but unsweetened dried will work fine)
2 Tablespoons dried orange peel
2 Tablespoons dried cornflowers

Place all ingredients in a 2 Cup glass jar (I use a wide mouth canning jar), replace the lid and shake until ingredients are well disbursed.

To brew: use 1 Tablespoon of tea per 12-16 oz boiling water, steep for about 5 minutes. Use more or less tea, and/or add sweetener to taste.

Til next time ~Stay trippy hippies ~JP

Spoonie Retirement – Life, love, and flu shots in the time of Covid

It’s been a busy week here at Chez Spoons. I had and actual visit (in person) with my Primary Care Dr. got my annual blood work, script refills, and a flu shot. I suffer from a mild allergy to raw eggs and so haven’t taken a flu shot in many a year. Back in the day when I was younger and healthier, my allergist would give me half dose, have me wait an hour, come back a week later and repeat with the second half of the dose. Who needs that pain in the … arm? Anyway, I read a CDC article on how a flu shot is potentially more important this year since a combined run of Round 2 Covid AND a nasty influenza could overwhelm the hospitals. Keeping in mind that my home state has experienced a scary high increase in Covid cases and related deaths I decided to check into it. Low and behold, they have an eggless vaccine … who knew. So I am all vacced up and ready to roll.

Grocery shopping has been kind of minimal this week. My Community Based Agriculture box included:

Fresh Produce
* 2 turnips
* 1 small bunch of kale
* 1 beautiful bunch of celery – both this and the kale came from a “Hoop House” farm.
Grains/dried/other
* 8 oz organic red quinoa
* 4 oz english breakfast tea
* 6 oz dehydrated tomato powder

As you can see, produce is getting kind of scarce this time of year. I’m beginning to fall back on my old stand-bys, whole grains (well pseudo grains), nuts and dehydrated fruits and vegetables as well as canned and frozen. We’ve loosened up Superhubs’ carb count just a wee bit since he started back on insulin. LADA diabetes is not well understood but he seems to be doing much better on the low dosage of insulin and upping his “slow carbs”. I’m using a little more beans, sweet potato and quinoa, bringing his total daily net carb count back to 80-100. We’ll visit with the endocrinologist next week but I am hopeful that this diagnosis may well improve his quality of care.

How’s your week been? Did you get a flu shot this year?

Til next time ~Peace ~JPP

Spoonie Retirement – Life, love and Autoimmune Diabetes in the time of Covid

Last week I kind of got off the Seasonal Eating Theme due to a holiday-stress-induced philosophizing tangent. *snap out of it JP, Winter is Coming* (pun intended). We got word this past week that Superhubs does indeed have LADA (Latent Autoimmune Diabetes in Adults) or type 1.5 diabetes. What the heck is that? Good question and not a lot of answers. Type 2 diabetes is more of a metabolic disorder where the body cannot properly utilize the insulin that is produced. Type 1.5 is an autoimmune disease where the immune system kills off the beta cells that produce insulin. Both types develop in adulthood and are slower onset than type 1 diabetes. We meet with the endocrinologist next week and will find out then how or if this affects our dietary plan. Superhubs’ primary care doctor has already started him back on insulin and the results are pretty encouraging.

Anywho, back to seasonal/local eating. Last week’s CBA box (Community Based Agriculture) included a local pasture raised chicken which we roasted up for our Thanksgiving feast. It being just the two of us the bird has fed us for a couple of days with plenty of good broth and bits left over for salads and soups this week. Our CBA box this week included:

*Fresh Produce:
1 head of butter lettuce from a local hydroponic garden
1 small head of green cabbage from local farm
*Meat/dairy/eggs
1 Yak sirloin steak (yes you read that right Yak like the big hairy cow)
1 dozen extra large eggs from a local farm mixed brown and white
6 oz local dairy cheddar cheese curds
*dried goods/spices/teas
1 bag dried apple slices from local farms

The uses are pretty obvious this week. The lettuce goes for salads and taco cups, the cabbage will get fried for a side dish and used in soup. Those beautiful eggs will make wonderful breakfasts and some egg salad for lunch. The cheese curds will adorn my luncheon salads (Superhubs is dairy free). The dried apple slices will be used for snacks and some cooked up with left over raisins from the pantry for a yummy pancake topping.

What I’m watching right now:

Til next time ~Peace ~JP

Spoonie Retirement — life, love and groceries in the time of COVID

Spoonie living is a series of complications and considerations. Things like grocery shopping for spoonies in the time of covid are even more complex than before. Now every meal must take into consideration, availability of ingredients, nutritional analysis, ease of preparation, and cost of said meal. Grocery shopping used to be a recreational activity for Superhubs and I. Now, it’s a chore.

When I was younger (OK a LOT younger), I was an earth child. I lived off the land for a few years and loved the experience. I have some seriously mad skills that need dusting off. In my post earth child years when I could no longer grow/raise/hunt my own food, I enjoyed CSA boxes. Community Supported Agriculture brings a portion of a local farm’s harvest to you in a cardboard box. When we first moved to South Dakota where CSA’s a few and far between, we simply bought a box from the Farmer’s Market in town. Pretty cool seeing what’s in season, what’s growing and what’s not and whipping up meals based on that. Of course, winter comes early here with a first frost date in September and a last frost date in late May; we have a really short growing season. What’s a “farm girl at heart” to do?

Fortunately, our local farmer’s market runs all year with on-line ordering. I build my own CSA box from the market’s offerings and my local health food coop. Fun huh?!? Then, I base my menus on what’s available. Right now, fresh produce is limited to “storage” crops. We still have offerings of dried items, some greenhouse growth, meats, cheeses, nuts, spices, honey, teas and lots of preserved and baked goods. Yummmmm!

Oh yeah, back to the whole “grocery shopping” theme of this post. So, that’s my “recreational” shopping these days. The bulk of our grocery shopping is done on-line. We order from Costco, Amazon, Nuts.com, and our local Safeway, farmers market, coop and health food stores. It works but it’s not as much fun. I’m striving to keep our eating seasonal this year as I firmly believe that seasonal eating is healthier both for us and the planet. One caveat here, Superhubs and I both follow a low carb diet, he is diabetic and I’m just fat, er, ah … fluffy. A lot of the currently available storage crops are out of our carb allowances; onions, potatoes and several of the winter squashes fall into this category. Boxes average $25/week.

My CBAB (Community Based Agriculture Box)

*Fresh Produce
8 oz. cranberries
1 medium spaghetti squash
*dried goods/spices/teas
1 oz freeze dried maitake (hen of the woods) mushrooms
4 oz dried apricots
3 oz chili powder
2 oz cinnamon black tea
*meat/dairy/eggs
8 oz local sharp cheddar cheese

Here’s how we used them:
winter fruit compote – cranberries & apricots (raisins from pantry)
low carb spaghetti marinara – spaghetti squash & some mushrooms
bok choy & mushrooms – dried maitake
low carb turkey chili – chili powder
various lunch plates & cheese omelettes – cheddar cheese
various lovely afternoon teas – cinnamon black tea

Do you eat seasonally? What are some of your favorite fall meals?

Til next time ~Peace ~JP

Spoonie Sunday – Choices

Spoons

Our prompt for Linda’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday was “Choices.” Which got me to thinking about spoonie choices. Now choices are something that every spoonie deals with on a daily basis, I mean really that’s pretty much the definition of a spoonie. Choices are also the bane of many spoonie’s existance. What to cook, what to wear, shower or no? yadayadayada … No relief in sight always choices, everywhere you look. It’s a huge burden for me. Maybe less (or more) for other spoonies. Partly it’s a side effect of brain fog but some days decisions or choices are just impossible for me to manage. Here are a few examples, Continue reading “Spoonie Sunday – Choices”

Spoonie Sunday – Keeping Warm part 2

Baby it’s cold outside! Last week I talked a little about spoonies and temperature sensitivity and ways to keep warm around the house. This week we’re going to talk about personal warmth. No, not the huggie feelie kind of personal warmth. We’re talking getting warm, inside, and keeping that body warmth. In the wintertime, we often feel cold and more dry. Our skin gets dry, our sinuses begin to dry out, and even our joints dry out. Winter is the Vata season, lots of warming foods are called for. Continue reading “Spoonie Sunday – Keeping Warm part 2”

SoCS and 31 Days of October — DRESSING UP

For the Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt brought to us by Lindaghill.com. Linda gives us the prompt of Dress. OK, I can work with that.

Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “dress.” Use it any way you’d like. Have fun!

One of the greatest joys of Halloween is that it’s the one day a year when grown ups get to play dress up without anybody staring. OK well maybe staring but like in a good way right? Continue reading “SoCS and 31 Days of October — DRESSING UP”

31 days of October challenge – Ghouls

31 days October

Today’s tidbits were inspired by Laura’s Girl Time post for 31 days of October challenge. Because ya know, it’s like October and well … Ghouls just wanna have fun

ghouls fun 1
picture from Pinterest

I came home on Halloween night
on my steps I saw a terrible sight
c’mon that make up’s way overdone
but Ghouls just wanna have fun

Not a fairy or princess in sight
just ghouls creating a dreadful fright
I want my mummy, now I’ve gotta run
’cause Ghouls just wanna have fun

 

ghoulish fingers - taste of home
picture from Taste of Home

Ghoulish Fingers
various cold cuts (salami, ham, olive loaf)
cream cheese (whipped or softened)
small grape tomatoes
Spread cold cut slices with cream cheese placing grape tomato on one end. Roll up.

Til next time ~Peace ~JPP

Spiced Creativity

coffee - Jason Wong on Unsplash

Spiced Creativity

I miss the catchy projects you made
like spiced creativity
you’ve had enough good stays
and last chance getaways
don’t stop today’s fun

So for today’s Found Poetry February, I’ve taken a snapshot of my inbox. I picked out a few words, and then strung them together in a little poem. Fun huh!?

Inbox poetry

creativity catchy projects like you made indian spiced stop when you’ve had enough spring break getaways goods stays last chance today only don’t miss out again fun food challenge free new photos

A little extra spice, because it’s snowy and cold in my little corner of the world.

Cinnamon Spice Cocoa

INGREDIENTS
3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 cups milk (1 qt.)
1/3 cup water hot
1/2 cup sugar
Dash salt
1/4 cup HERSHEY’S Cocoa
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
DIRECTIONS
Mix sugar, cocoa, cinnamon and salt in medium saucepan; stir in water. Bring to boil over medium heat, stirring constantly; boil and stir 2 minutes.
Add milk; stir and heat until hot. Do Not Boil. Remove from heat; add vanilla. Beat with whisk until foamy. About six 6-ounce servings.
Note: Recipe may be doubled.

Til next time ~Peace ~JPP

Found Poetry February Day 10 – Haiku for a Cold Morning

Somehow this did not get posted yesterday, my apologies this travel has got me all parfuggled.

notebook-3297317__340 pixabat

Here’s a bit of found poetry from a seldom thought of source, a recipe. 😉

A Haiku for a cold morning

Strong vanilla spice
steaming hot cinnamon froth
texture, taste, coffee

And the source of the inspiration: Continue reading “Found Poetry February Day 10 – Haiku for a Cold Morning”