Ten Things to Beat the Winter Blues

Thing Three: Angels among us

Diva was a great old friend and companion. She was a person cat. She appeared in the garden shortly after our cat was hit and killed by a car. She looked almost like our cat, Princess Po Po. (Young daughter named her!)

Even though she was a beautiful Maine Coon it seemed no one owned her. She had a sub-dermal tag from the Humane Society so someone loved her once but the address with the tag did not turn up an owner.

I was going through CHOP chemo for stage 4 Non-hodgkins lymphoma and it was really painful. Diva moved in and would lie on top of me purring. It was really healing. 30937_600

She lived with us for eleven years until last spring. I am still in remission!

I found a book that I thought really captured what our animal angels can do for us. It was called, “My Cat Saved My LIfe”. It is an inspiring story of learning how to move through grief into life, as taught by a cat.

Thing Two for Beating the Winter Blues!


We had our first Fake Xmas Dinner. The Totally Fake Xmas Dinner is in the Spring when we can get everyone together in one place.

I made my version of Jamie Oliver’s Turkey Wellington. I could not find puff pastry. I tortured several stock boys (I am a sexist when it comes to grocery stock jocks, I always let the girls flee) and still they could not tell me where it was to be found, so I had to settle with frozen pie shells. They did reluctantly confess as to where the dried Porcini mushrooms were and yet I had to torture NOT ONE, but THREE of them to finally zero in on the treasure. It seems the SUPER GROCERY STORE GODS only allow their minions small sections of the map to find the golden fleece…
turkeywellington (2)
The turkey breast had a bone in it so I had to de-bone it myself and that meant it wasn’t all nice and neat like the one Jamie had to stuff . I used lots of skewers. Then I decided I could not use the mushrooms inside as some people do not like them and in fact are loathe to eat them, so I used mashed potatoes. The mushrooms were a side dish. Yes there was bacon but that was a secret because, for no particular reason (not religious, I checked) some people no longer eat pork, even though they love the taste… Am I evil?
The whole thing came together somehow. Daughter made gravy, traditional stuffing, and mashed potatoes. We had roasted cauliflower too and then son-in-law asked, “Hey, are we eating all white tonight?” I did serve individual ramekins of mac-n-cheese, which I learned, from a rap song on the Xmas compilation CD someone gave me, is traditional African American Xmas food, particularly when served with “Collard Greens” which I did not serve. **sad face icon** Young son said, “I’m not white” and no one argued.
The long and short of it is, I have been stuffing myself  TO THE GILLS with leftovers. It has caused me to sleep and sleep and sleep which is great because one of the symptoms of Seasonal Affected Disorder is not being able to sleep. So I am making a note to self: replace clothes with stretch fabrics and pants with draw strings.


Thing number one: Find inspiring stories of creativity and post them in your blog!

This guy, does stuff in the snow that is mind-blowing! Seriously, check it out! I’m told this is why the Aliens won’t destroy the planet. This link comes to me via a professor, a doctor of English, but she has written a lot about Science Fiction, like the popular series Star Gate, and appeared on a documentary about it. I feel that this makes her tremendously qualified to make that assertion!

I am heading into the S.A.D. days of winter. That means I will post, intermittently things that I am checking out to beat my seasonal affected disorder. I don’t know if S.A.D. is recognized as a legitimate disorder but I like that the acronym spells how I feel for several weeks each year.

first born.

My first born.

I thought was very wise and mature until I had a baby. Before I had my son, things just happened and I did stuff. Sometimes I knew I had done well and sometimes I knew I had not. After I had my first child my heart was irrevocably torn open. It was wonderful and terrifying.

One of the things I realized was the universality of this love.  Suddenly pictures of mothers holding their sick, vulnerable or starving children were not of people in some far off place. They were pictures of me and their children were all my child and I felt helpless in a way I had never known before.

5495_600 The Christian story of a teenage mom giving birth to a kid in a barn essentially without a “real” father with only some crazy story to separate her from all the other moms out in the cold is a stark contrast to the excesses of the holiday, but it is compelling to the open heart in a way like no other.

Sorry I haven’t posted for a while!

I’ve been quilting and nesting. You can catch a glimpse of the lastest over at my other blog, quiltingismyaddiction.wordpress.com.

As I have often said, quilting can a be expensive, but you meet nice old ladies when you go for supplies, so it’s better than buying CRACK, which I have learned is a type of cocaine. Buying crack, which is also HIGHLY ADDICTIVE btw, you might run into unsavoury types like Rob Ford.