Wednesday, April 30, 2008
Thankfully I found an easy home remedy that actually works! Just take a plain ordinary tea bag (standard black tea), wet it, and apply it to the canker sore for a few minutes. It literally draws out the moisture from the sore, visibly shrinking it and numbing the pain. Repeat a few times throughout the day.
Tea bags, who'd have thought?
Now if I could just sort out the flu and the stress...
Visit Rocks In My Dryer to see what's working for everyone else this week.
Tuesday, April 29, 2008
If you do I promise to try not to cough or sneeze on you. At least not on purpose.
Monday, April 28, 2008
I'm sick and feeling utterly miserable and am stuck in a cafe down the block for another 2.5 hours, when all I really want to do is curl up in bed. Instead I'm stuck here trying unsuccessfully to work as coffee machines spit and hiss all around me, not to mention the woman at the table next to me is apparently a divorce attorney and I've been stuck listening to her discuss some poor guy's divorce all morning.
grumble grumble moan moan whinge
A girlfriend is coming by in about 2 hours, if I haven't keeled over in my
Have I mentioned that this whole scenario is highly unpleasant and making me decidedly cranky?
At least I finally managed to connect to their wireless network, that sucked up a good half an hour right there, albeit a very aggravating one. If I have to sit here feeling too sick to work, I should at least be able to blog, right?
Sunday, April 27, 2008
Saturday, April 26, 2008
Friday, April 25, 2008
Sometimes I wonder if this is a character flaw.
How it might feel to be so self-confident that you would dare to appear in public with shocking red lipstick and a fabulously large hat. To be so far ahead of the trends that you become the trend-setter, rather than the follower. (Or worse, so hopelessly out of touch that you wouldn't recognize and up and coming trend if it jumped up and bit you in the ass. Or is that just me?) I remember a girl named Pam that I knew in high school. She was outrageous. Before the rest of the school knew what New Wave was she had shaved one side of her head. Then she dyed the other side purple. Purple. Pam was outrageous. She'd say anything to anybody. Do anything. Take any dare. I'm not sure she was liked, but she made one hell of a splash. Everyone knew her name. I knew I'd never want to be like her, probably couldn't be even if I'd wanted to, but deep down I did admire her spunk. I wonder where it took her in life.
This week I feel too beaten down by circumstances to even consider putting on an outrageous front (or even an outrageous hat), but I wonder if I could even when things were brighter. If I would dare. If I should do it anyway, just for the release. Say something shocking, or do something shocking, or just wear something utterly extraordinary.
Would it be liberating, or would I be a small girl playing dress-up in her mother's closet? Would I in fact be liberated, or just gawked at and humiliated?
I'm not sure I'm brave enough to find out.
On second thought, maybe I think I'll just stick to my own style, Bohemian and outdated though it may be. I'll just call it timeless. Yes, timeless. Timeless and a bit unique. And utterly me. What you see is what you get. Not outrageous, but familiar and very comfortable.
Thursday, April 24, 2008
Wednesday, April 23, 2008
Tuesday, April 22, 2008
It's been a wonderful visit, a time to reconnect, to rediscover, and above all to enjoy each other. And that we have. We'll be sad to see them go, but quickly enough we will lose ourselves in our daily routine, made busier and more joyful with the return of the sun's warmth which can't help but encourage long lazy afternoons at the playground, weekend barbecues with friends, and Saturday afternoons at our favorite beachside pub. And then, before we can blink, August will be here and we will see each other again.
Sunday, April 20, 2008
Friday, April 18, 2008
Thursday, April 17, 2008
(Yes, my parents are still here. I'll be back to something wordier next week. We're having a great visit, but it's definitely cutting down on my blogging time.)
They just don't write them like this anymore... Shakespearean insults - the C's.
My favorite is #2. What's yours?
- Canker Of A Calm World And A Long Peace
- Caterpillar Of The Commonwealth
- Clamorous Harbinger Of Blood And Death
- Clay-Brained Guts
- Clod Of Wayward Marl
- Close Contriver Of All Harms
- Cock'red Silken Wanton
- Cream-Fac'd Loon
- Creeping Venomed Thing
- Crooked-Pated Old Cuckoldy Ram
- Curl'd-Pate Ruffian
- Cutter-Off Of Nature's Wit
Have you Thirteened this week?
Wednesday, April 16, 2008
Tuesday, April 15, 2008
1. I LOVE LOVE LOVE iced coffee. I rarely drink it during the winter but as soon as the weather warms up it becomes my beverage of choice. I keep a pitcher of coffee in the fridge and help myself to it all day long, order it whenever I go out, pretty much all the time. And yet, each spring, I spend the first few weeks wondering why on earth I feel so wired all the time. Yes, I'm a slow learner.
2. I just bought a fitball and am sitting on that instead of on the dining room chair I usually sit on at the computer (when I'm at the dining room table instead of sitting at the island - obviously a ball couldn't replace a stool). I'm hoping this will help my back without having to go buy a fancy office chair that would then clutter up my living room. This way I only have a giant blue ball cluttering up the room, but the kids are having a (wait for it) ball (a ball? get it? I crack myself up sometimes) playing with it so I don't mind as much.
3. I cannot stand fish (the eating kind, not the aquarium kind, I love aquariums). The only fish I can bear to eat are tuna from a can, salmon, and jarred gefilte fish (not the real stuff, it's too fishy). I wish I liked fish, it's healthy, on every menu here in Israel, and supposedly very tasty for those who can stand it. I just can't do it though. No fish for me.
4. When I first visited Hungary eight or so years ago I finally realized that it's not my fault that I have such a weakness for overwhelmingly rich creamy and oh so unhealthy sauces - it's genetic! The proof was right there - I come from an entire country full of cream sauce lovers who wouldn't recognize most vegetables if they jumped off the plate and bit them! Which isn't likely since there were very few vegetables on the menu at all. I have managed to learn to love a lot of vegetables, but the cream sauce thing is apparently insurmountable. It's part of my genetic makeup and I may as well just concede defeat and enjoy it. Besides, it's a lot more fun than the whole self-deprivation thing.
5. I really feel like baking ultra-cute little decorated cookies today, which would be an incredibly stupid thing to do just before Passover, so I'm not going to do it. I will let the cookie decorating book I bought sit there and taunt me until the holiday is over. Bah.
6. I still remember how to make a serviceable origami cup out of looseleaf paper. My kid thought that was a very cool thing.
6.5 I must remember to...
I'm tagging any of you who want to play along - leave me a note in comments so I can swing by for a visit.
Monday, April 14, 2008
Sunday, April 13, 2008
Thursday, April 10, 2008
1. She's A Witch
2. Bring Out Your Dead
3. Three Questions
4. The Black Knight
5. Coconuts (but of course)
6. Holy Hand Grenade
7. Always Look On The Bright Side of Life (are you singing along yet?)
8. I told them we already got one!
9. Bigus Dickus
10. The People's Front of Judea
11. The Ministry of Silly Walks
12. The Fish Slapping Dance
13. The Cheese Shop
Have a great week everyone. I've got my parents visiting so it may take me a while to visit all of you, but I'll get there.
Visit Thursday Thirteen to see what everyone else is counting this week.
Tuesday, April 8, 2008
Sunday, April 6, 2008
I am on ten days worth of oral steroids and have a referral for both 8 sessions of physical therapy and custom orthotics (which I have no intention of wearing until next fall - this is FLIP-FLOP season people!). He told me that they were preventative and that I "didn't have to wear them at home". Since I work from home that covers most of the day, then I can extrapolate kid-fetching and errand-running as "home-centered" activities. The steroids and PT better work, because we're heading into six months of soaring temperatures and there is no way in hell I'm wearing closed shoes every day for the next six months. Not gonna happen.
Saturday, April 5, 2008
I'd been growing increasingly frustrated with the limitations of my little point and shoot camera. I would occasionally end up with truly breathtaking pictures, but equally as often I'd get garbage, especially indoors at night (i.e. every graduation or school pageant my children were ever in). (Yes, I realize that most of that is the photographer, not the camera, but allow me my illusions, would you. Besides, this camera really and truly does suck at night.)
A few months ago we (ok, I) decided it was time to take the plunge and head on up the photographic ladder to see what an SLR could do for us. My husband, internet shopper extraordinaire, spent weeks if not months (years, decades...) comparing cameras, checking prices, and finally ordering (only to cancel and immediately reorder from the same company when they dropped the price two days later!) our new baby, complete with an 18-55mm zoom lens, bag and other assorted doodads.
Watch this space over the next few weeks. There are sure to be some spectacular failures as I learn my way around my new toy, and hopefully a good one thrown in here and there as well.
Oh, and a bit of touring, holidays, and visiting with the grandparents as well.
The Sunday Scribblings prompt for this week is photograph. Ever since we ordered the new camera, I've been completely frustrated with the old one, so I'm not waxing all that poetic about individual photographs at the moment. Hopefully that will change soon.
Friday, April 4, 2008
The next edition of the Kosher Cooking Carnival, hosted this month by A Mother In Israel, is devoted to Passover - Passover recipes, recipes for getting rid of all that leftover chametz before the holiday, and all sorts of other Passover preparations.
For my contribution I've got a recipe that may actually compete with my matza balls in the not exactly health food competition (quick MII, you may need to hide your eyes). As I said then, I'm happy to cook fairly healthy, vitamin-laden food all year long but holidays in my house are for tradition, arteries be damned...
2 very large yams (those of you in the US can use 1 large can, I've never seen canned yams here in Israel)
1 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
Handful of raisins
1/2 cup coconut
1 cup chopped walnuts
170g (1½ sticks) butter/margarine
- Peel and cube yams. Boil until very soft. Cool slightly. (Skip these steps if using canned yams.)
- Mix yams, eggs, butter (margarine), sugar, vanilla and a pinch of cinnamon in the food processor until smooth.
- Transfer to mixing bowl.
- Mix in coconut, raisins and chopped walnuts.
- Bake in greased dish for 45 minutes at 350 degrees (180 celsius).
This dish can easily be made ahead of time and reheated. Keeps well.
This is a VERY rich dish, a little goes a long way. If it sounds suspiciously Southern, that's because it is – my grandmother got this recipe, known in our family as Margie's yams, from her Georgia-born and raised housekeeper at least fifty years ago. Since then it's become a well-entrenched holiday staple in all the children's and grandchildren's families, and has now become a tradition in its own right for the Anglo friends we celebrate all our holidays with here in Israel.
Switching gears to a more traditionally Jewish dish, here's an easy no-bake dessert:
1/2 cup thin-sliced almonds
1/4 cup dried apricots (chopped)
1/2 cup toasted coconut
3 Tbl oil
3 Tbl honey
6-8 oz good quality chocolate chips
Mix oil and honey together until thick. Mix all ingredients together except chocolate. (Note: you can either finely chop the apricots or you can throw them into a food processor for a smoother consistency (I go with this option - it's much faster). Press firmly onto shallow dish, making a thin layer. Melt the chocolate chips and spread on top of the apricot layer. Chill and then cover in foil. Refrigerate. Cut into squares and serve.
And as an extra, this devastatingly good (dairy) flourless chocolate cake is great for Passover, but don't let that stop you from making it all year round! (Oh, and I skip the glaze on top. It's quite rich enough on its own. A few fresh berries are nice as a decoration though.)
Thursday, April 3, 2008
In light of all this, here are:
13 Things I Can't Do Because My Foot Hurts
1. Bounce on a pogo stick
2. Ride a unicycle
3. Dance a pirouette onstage with the Bolshoi Ballet
4. Go barefooting (waterski barefoot)
5. All those fancy figure skating jumps and spins
6. Kick a Super Bowl-winning field goal
7. Put my foot behind my ear
8. Paint a masterpiece with my toes
10. Walk a tightrope
11. Perform acrobatics while hanging by my foot from a silk rope
12. Dance the can-can
13. Break a wooden board with my foot, karate-style
Of course I couldn't do any of these things before either, but let's not nit-pick...
Visit Thursday Thirteen to see what everyone else is, or perhaps isn't, up to this week.
Wednesday, April 2, 2008
I'm taking advantage of the high traffic WFMW to share this very important post from WhyMommy with as many people as possible. In a way, this is truly my best parenting advice - take care of your own health so that you can stay healthy and stay alive for your children. All the rest is window dressing. Important, yes, but it pales in the face of simply being able to be there.
I've talked before about Inflammatory Breast Cancer, and how my friend in the computer is
YOU DON'T HAVE TO HAVE A LUMP TO HAVE BREAST CANCER.
Did you hear that? You DON'T have to have a lump.
Rather than retyping that old post, I'm going to let WhyMommy's words speak directly to you. She says it better than I ever could, because she's living it. It's not just a warning to her. It's the battle for her life.
We hear a lot about breast cancer these days. One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetimes, and there are millions living with it in the U.S. today alone. But did you know that there is more than one type of breast cancer?
I didn’t. I thought that breast cancer was all the same. I figured that if I did my monthly breast self-exams, and found no lump, I’d be fine.
Oops. It turns out that you don’t have to have a lump to have breast cancer. Six weeks ago, I went to my OB/GYN because my breast felt funny. It was red, hot, inflamed, and the skin looked…funny. But there was no lump, so I wasn’t worried. I should have been. After a round of antibiotics didn’t clear up the inflammation, my doctor sent me to a breast specialist and did a skin punch biopsy. That test showed that I have inflammatory breast cancer, a very aggressive cancer that can be deadly.
Inflammatory breast cancer is often misdiagnosed as mastitis because many doctors have never seen it before and consider it rare. “Rare” or not, there are over 100,000 women in the U.S. with this cancer right now; only half will survive five years. Please call your OB/GYN if you experience several of the following symptoms in your breast, or any unusual changes: redness, rapid increase in size of one breast, persistent itching of breast or nipple, thickening of breast tissue, stabbing pain, soreness, swelling under the arm, dimpling or ridging (for example, when you take your bra off, the bra marks stay – for a while), flattening or retracting of the nipple, or a texture that looks or feels like an orange (called peau d’orange). Ask if your GYN is familiar with inflammatory breast cancer, and tell her that you’re concerned and want to come in to rule it out.
There is more than one kind of breast cancer. Inflammatory breast cancer is the most aggressive form of breast cancer out there, and early detection is critical. It’s not usually detected by mammogram. It does not usually present with a lump. It may be overlooked with all of the changes that our breasts undergo during the years when we’re pregnant and/or nursing our little ones. It’s important not to miss this one.
Inflammatory breast cancer is detected by women and their doctors who notice a change in one of their breasts. If you notice a change, call your doctor today. Tell her about it. Tell her that you have a friend with this disease, and it’s trying to kill her. Now you know what I wish I had known before six weeks ago.
You don’t have to have a lump to have breast cancer.
P.S. Feel free to steal this post too. I’d be happy for anyone in the blogosphere to take it and put it on their site, no questions asked. Dress it up, dress it down, let it run around the place barefoot. I don’t care. But I want the word to get out. I don’t want another young mom, or old man, or anyone in between, to have to stare at this thing on their chest and wonder, is it mastitis? Is it a rash? Am I overreacting? This cancer moves FAST, and early detection and treatment is critical for survival.
From Robin again:
Everyone who reads this, please, go do your monthly breast self-exams. Don't just look for a lump. IBC is NOT characterized by a lump. Please go right now and read these descriptions of the symptoms of regular breast cancer and inflammatory breast cancer, and if you find anything questionable, please, PLEASE, go see your doctor. Knowledge is power and early detection is critical.
Tuesday, April 1, 2008
Sitting with your bare feet in the sand as you watch the sun set over the Mediterranean Sea
Seeing the smile on a new mother's face when she breastfeeds her baby for the very first time
A really good cup of freshly brewed coffee
The freedom to stay curled up in bed a while longer in the morning
Your child spontaneously saying "I love you mommy"
Oh hell, any kind of cheesecake
Or for that matter any kind of cheese
The first picnic of the summer
A meadow full of flowers
What's your bliss?
PS Curious about the girl behind the blog? There's an interview with me up at Damien's Postcards From The Funny Farm today.