Simple Sunday

A simple day to start the new year.

My daily chores are done and the FL zone this week is the kitchen. The entry way was only 2 days so I missed that. But, I think I’ll sweep the patios and tidy up the fir boughs.(my daughter already did all this so it’s done!!) I’m going to leave them thru january as it seems wintery. My door wreath is bay laurel so that can stay up too. I also have some nice pinecones we collected up in Tahoe on the bench outside the front door.

One thing I’ve learned with being more minimal is to use natural things for decor or seasonal decorations. It makes it easier for me to not have think about the decorations in bins. I definitely used to keep bins with seasonal stuff but not so much any more. Now I only have my vintage Halloween, and some Easter stuff and Christmas in some Ikea boxes. Works for me.

I used my Staub again for a braised short rib recipe. It cooked beautifully but we ( the meat eaters) were not too into the dish. It was good but not great. It will not go into rotation even though it really is an easy one pot meal. This pot though has cooked everything I’ve done to perfection. If you’re looking for an all around pot this is it. Staub should sponsor me as I cannot say enough good things about this pot. And that’s coming from a die hard fan of Le Creuset.

I am doing a Walmart pickup so that should get us thru till we get to Costco about mid month. I’m planning on trying to use the Instant Pot to make yogurt. It seems easy enough so on the Walmart order I have some whole milk yogurt to use as a starter. We’ll see. I’ll post how it goes.

My rib feels pretty good. Maybe still a little tender where I probably pulled the muscle around the rib. I’ll be sure to mention it to my doctor. He did ask whether I wanted to do PET scans and a bone marrow biopsy to see it there were any hot spots and/or if the myeloma has morphed. I declined since it is what it is regardless. I think if I had more symptoms I might but at this point I’m fairly asymptomatic except for blood work that show the increases.

This week I see the eye doctor for my 6 month macular pucker scan. I’m hoping to not have to get my eyes dilated as they stay dilated for hours. I’m also thinking of getting the surgery when the pandemic is over and things are back to normal so probably a year from now.

I added some more ” things I hope to accomplish” list. :

find 3 new hikes to try

paint the living room and kitchen( this was supposed to be done last year)

find 2 new places to camp( I was thinking either private or maybe just Forest Service campgrounds)

keep up with the prepper pantry but streamline what I stock( and know we will use).

Friday things

Well, let’s see. The week was dark and stormy( kidding … a reference to “Throw Momma from the Train”)! Actually it was pretty dark and stormy yesterday for the morning and then it lightened up by afternoon. Today it’s freezing this morning but sunny and should be a nice day with highs in the mid 50’s.

It was an okay week. I really felt depressed most of it but today I feel brighter.

I didn’t make bread this week so this morning I’m baking a couple of Tartine boules so that will give us some bread for toast or grilled cheese.

I only went to our Holiday market this week for a few things and I think I spent $45. I needed a gift card for our garbage guy and a holder and I bought an inexpensive bottle of Cabernet for him.

I also started writing out a list of projects for 2021 and where we could possibly go camping. Capitola for sure if the SB is open, Nevada Beach also. I’d like to get to Bodega to camp too. That’s usually booked way in advance since it’s right on the beach and all the big RVer’s want the spots. I might check that out today.

Last night I made a polenta lasagna and it was really good. I used the IP to make the polenta and then Rao’s sauce( which is in my opinion the best on the market.) Costco has the best deals on a 2 pack for about $10 something. Then I used grated mozzarella on top. We all liked it and I think because it was so easy, I’ll add to my menu rotation.

When I menu plan, I write up a menu for the whole month and then check off what I made. I also add in space for a new recipe so I can try something new. I also add in 2 nights of takeout. We already had the pizza this month so that leaves one left. Some months, especially with the pandemic, we didn’t do any take out at all.

Tonight is supposed to be pizza night but since we had that Italian polenta last night I’m going to bake the frozen nut loaf. I made some cranberry sauce from frozen cranberries and I’ll do some mashed potatoes and a veggie. that should do it.

Finally!!!!

After almost 8 months of bureaucratic bullshit, I got my NYC birth certificate yesterday.

I actually ordered 3 when I sent in the final documents. unadjustednonraw_thumb_354.jpg

So there it is finally done. What an ordeal. I should write an ebook about how to get a certified birth certificate from NYC.

So, unfortunately ( i sincerely hope not) they didn’t return in the same envelope my certified marriage certificate. I’m not panicking yet because they didn’t mail the other in the envelope I provided, so I’m going to wait a few days and then try and email the corrections department.  Hopefully, it’s just in process on someone’s desk:(

Well, now I can dance in the streets, get a passport and get the real ID from California when I go to renew my license. Geez…..

Today is a doctor appt for B before he starts cycle 4 of Dacogen on Thursday.  If after this cycle, everything seems a- go I think he’ll start the transplant process which is a number of tests.  We haven’t heard about the brother’s donor match yet, but maybe she will know something.

We are in for more rain today thru Thursday but then it looks like we may be heading for ‘normal ‘ weather. Sunny, and in the ’60s.

I made IP polenta cacao de pepe, and wow it was superb. If you like polenta but not stirring for 40 minutes this is a deal breaker. It was creamy and just delicious.

Then I made tilapia with a parmesan crust and it was also delicious. Because I’m trying to eat fewer carbs, it’s a good recipe. I still drink wine so the carbs are still there, but hey, you got to do what you gotta do:) So this is not Keto, just fewer carbs like bread( my weakness) bagels, pasta, etc. I do love carbs, but I’m curious if I’ll notice a difference. We’ll see.

 

 

the week ahead…

This is going to be another busy appt week. B has his oncology appt and starts cycle 4 of Dacogen. That runs 5 days straight.  So We’ll be out and about a lot.

Since I don’t have any grocery needs except perhaps the cat food, I’ll probably go to the gym or sit at the coffee shop. Dacogen infusion takes about an hour but total time runs about 2.

I don’t have any appts although I still need to get into the dentist for them to scan for my retainer. Every time I call, there’s a reason the dentist is unavailable. (Last time was he was out of the office on Friday).

It’s supposed to be just cloudy today but rain/snow the rest of the week, I hope my daughter can get up to Truckee.  What a winter this has been. One for the record books.

Next week is daylight savings which I dislike as I like the light as it is now in both the morning and afternoon. California has legislation to eliminate it but I don’t know whatever came of it.  And Spring is only a few weeks away. Although with all this rainy weather, it may be delayed or maybe we’ll have SUNSHINE !!

Today is the Kitchen zone if you are following along with Flylady.  If so, try and declutter something while you’re at it. Yesterday I put my crockpot in a box and dated it. If I don’t use it or need it in 3 months I ‘ll give it to the thrift store. Since I’m using the IP exclusively, there’s no need for 2 things.

The kitchen zone is my biggest area mostly because of the deeper clean it needs. Overall it takes me 1-2 hours.

The other day I made the IP pork chops and they were delicious. I don’t like pork chops in the crockpot as they seem to shred but these were intact and cut lovely. I was quite pleased. Yesterday I did some meal prep for the week. I made IP brown rice and grilled some chicken. My daughter also steamed asparagus and somehow they were so good there were none left over for lunches.  That’s okay, I still have some broccoli to cook.

I’ve learned a few things about the IP. One is for a whole chicken, I’d much rather roast in the oven. I like the look and taste better. Also, I grilled chicken breasts last night in the cast iron pan and that too I prefer over the IP.  So it is a learning curve with it. If you’re starting out I’d say, just try recipes and see what ones make your life easier or the food simpler to prepare. I’ve only made beans once but am planning on doing black beans this week too for burrito bowls. Hardboiled eggs are a breeze to do.

Well, off to start the kitchen zone.

 

Five on Friday or more…

It’s been a busy week. The snow and weather have been a PITA, but we got thru. Yesterday morning there was ice snow on the ground and in the trees. It must have been like freezing rain in the early morning. The roads were a little scary.

We did recycle this week, and we went to Harbor Freight in Roseville to get a car canopy thing. This last week the Santa Fe has been iced over every morning and taken forever to defrost. So we will put that up over the weekend.

I had my labs this week and haven’t heard what the results are. I’ll probably call later if I don hear.  Usually, my doctor is really good about that but sometimes it slips thru his radar.  I go to Sacramento to see him next week.

I’ve used the instant pot daily and I am really enjoying it. I made pinto beans( which turned out great), a butter chicken, rice again and hardboiled eggs.  I really like that it is quiet and the flavors are pretty impressive. Oh, yeah, I made minestrone soup that was excellent.

Because of 2 trips to Costco, I’ve gone over our food budget but I’m just chalking it up to whatever as some of the stuff was the Orgain for B which was pricey. We bought 2 of them, plus coconut waters and nuts to help him add on calories to gain weight.  So, I’m just letting it go instead of obsessing about it. ( which I probably will do anyway)…

B has labs tomorrow and infusion on Sunday.  He will need platelets and probably blood but the blood has been 14 days so that’s an improvement. But honestly, it needs to be better.

I have finally have figured out Medicare to a point. I still need to call the insurance company and ask a few questions but I have the basics figured out so I feel good about switching by June. B’s insurance stuff gets re-upped in June so I will consider that (May 31) as the last day and Medicare to start June 1st. I’m a little nervous about it but it’s going to have to happen sooner or later.

Well, I’m off to town to do some errands.

 

Quick update:

just saw my labs and my kappa light chains went up 4 points( bad) to 19.4 which is the borderline for high. So there it is I’m at the high normal range but at least not out of it.

Lambda went to 13. 6 which is in the normal range, high is 26.5

the ratio went to 1.43 high normal is 1.65 so that’s still below.

Well, I’m somewhat dismayed but heck it’s still a long way off till it would be back on treatment.

 

Simple Sunday

Still raining and snowing. Well, it’s like slushy rain where we live but still, it’s very cold and I’m sure the snow is coming down in the Tahoe area. It’s like snowmageddon up there.  Many ‘stupid’ people yesterday clogged the freeway to try and get up to the snow and it was a mess. Pictures on the live cams showed cars and trucks just lined up for miles because it was so backed up. Eventually, they just closed the freeway.

Update: 6:30 am…. it’s light enough to see outside and it is very definitely snowing!!!!

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I was going to go to the gym unless it totally clears up. We do have 4 wd but still, people don’t know how to drive in the snow so I think it’ll be a home day.

Last night I made a minestrone in the instant pot. I do have to say it was really delicious. I put it on soup for 30 and then after 10 minutes of natural release I vented it. Then I added some cheese tortellini and closed the lid again. I just kept it closed until we were ready for dinner. I would give it an A+.  I may be getting rid of my crockpot after I do beans which I haven’t done yet. But many vegans use the Instant pot specifically for the beans it can do in a short period.

Today I am roasting a chicken in my large cast iron pan.  I did the whole chicken last time in the IP but I think I prefer the oven. Plus it’s a great day to use the oven. I may even make some WW bread too.

This week for those who follow Flylady, it’s the bedroom zone.  I normally do sheets on Sunday but I think I’ll wait till tomorrow which is weirdly enough supposed to be sunny.

This week isn’t too busy. I have my labs tomorrow. B doesn’t have labs till Tuesday with infusion on Wednesday if needed. Probably platelets and I hope he can squeak by without needing a blood transfusion.  BTW, the transplant Dr. ruled out his older brother due to age, so it’ll only be his younger one who is 64. So that does lower the chance of the match but I’m not too worried as the National Donor base will then be checked.

If all goes to plan, the donor kit will be back in a week and then it’ll about 2-3 weeks till we know.  So that puts us the end of March. He will have finished cycle 4 and it’s possible he’d be ready to go in.  We’ll see.

 

 

Simple Sunday

We were up and out at 7:30 to get to the infusion center and then I came straight home to do my Sunday chores.

I did the bathroom zone, vacuumed, tidying the kitchen counters and did some emails.

Then I went back to town to go to the gym and Target. B has to have blood and platelets plus the Dacogen so it’ll be a long day for him. Either my son or daughter will go get him around 3 pm.

I don’t think I’ve mentioned that I did get an Instant Pot and have really liked it so far.  I’ve done rice a few times, a chicken salsa recipe, a whole chicken, and last night I did spaghetti. The spaghetti sounds weird but actually, it was quite good. Plus, I sauteed the ground beef in the instant pot then put the spaghetti is and then homemade sauce.  It was really quite delicious.

Today I’m going to do brown rice and I may try hardboiled eggs too.  The whole chicken was very moist but I think overall I’d prefer a roast chicken. The time factor though is pretty amazing. I think since it’s really a pressure cooker the flavors are locked into whatever you are cooking.  I wouldn’t say I absolutely love it yet, but I have enjoyed the things I’ve made. I haven’t tried beans yet and for me, that’s probably the deciding factor.

This coming week shouldn’t be too bad with appts. B has chemo tomorrow( the last of this cycle), then Wednesday I have the appt with the Medicare person, so that’s it overall except B’s labs.

The weather is supposed to be cold and rainy/snowy so I’m not looking forward to that.