My OTHER Stomach

DID ANYONE SAY DESSERT ???

Peeps, work with me here, I am telling you a very big secret. Not many know about this but it is a very easy concept. Forget about anything, anyone else has told you, especially your doctors. They don’t teach THIS in medical school because they don’t even know about it. But, I do and I know it well. I have taught my family and they went on and taught their most trusted friends. Be careful with this most amazing gift. I am telling it to you because of my deep love for my readers.

Most people apparently feel that they have one stomach. Most medical people would agree but I beg to differ. Growing up with a Viennese father and a German/French mother we never had dessert. Dessert in our home was jello or social tea biscuits or those pressed, break your teeth hard raisin or prune bars that I haven’t seen since the sixties. My father would make up things called “concoctions”  for himself with bananas, ice milk (sherbert?) applesauce, sprinkles, canned fruit, yogurt and whatever else he could find. Example something like below but much higher:

"Dessert pour une personne"

“Dessert pour une personne” (Photo credit: Maxime FORT)

When I became a mother, things changed. I didn’t want my kids to have to go to other people’s houses and search/sneak through their closets and take delicious snacks ( like I did.) No, I wanted to be the provider of the snacks. In fact, my friend Debbie’s son, Michael,  called me “The Cookie Lady,” a name I wore with great pride.

In my house sweets were NOT banned but limits were set. Some of my children’s friends would come here with an organic apple and then gorge themselves full of Oreos or Chocolate Chip cookies. I didn’t judge AND there was always fruit on the table along with the cookies. I gave them choices…

In short, when you are full with a meal you can always have dessert. Always. There is a different pouch for that: The Dessert Stomach. It is there for a good reason, because in my family now, there is always room for dessert. Always.

No matter how full you are, no matter if you think you can’t eat another bite, just rest for a minute, look at the dessert menu and order. As soon as your dessert comes, your dessert stomach is happy to oblige. In our family we have 2 chocolate lovers and two

cupcakes

cupcakes (Photo credit: stu_spivack)

vanilla lovers, although I can go both ways.

We always we end up buying one dessert ( or two) and sharing them. Dessert (or D as we call it) is love to a higher power.

So next time you order dessert, don’t feel guilty, you are not over eating, you are just trying to fill a bit of your Dessert Stomach. Don’t say it timidly, say it with confidence and power. Most of all, say it convincingly. I bet they have never heard  of the “Other Stomach” Theory.

Feel free to tell them.

PS this is not meant for after lunch ( I got into trouble that way) it is only for after dinner. Trust me on this.

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Haiku Horizons: HOME 4

English: Image of comet C/1996 B2 (Hyakutake),...

English: Image of comet C/1996 B2 (Hyakutake), taken on 1996 March 25, with a 225mm f/2.0 Schmidt Camera (focal length 450mm) on Kodak Panther 400 color slide film. Exposure 0:56 to 1:06 UT (10 minutes). The field shown is about 6.5°x4.8°. Note the prominent disconnection event in the comet’s ion tail. Stars in the image appear trailed, as the camera tracked the comet during the exposure. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

 

 

 

Hubble Space Telescope Advanced Camera for Sur...

Hubble Space Telescope Advanced Camera for Surveys image of Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 fragment B on 2006 April 18, 19 and 20. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

1)

Small, deaf, sun-filled home,

Corner shadows, two adults

Lost in the echoes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

2)

Where will my home be?

Old, runny eyes, gray hair, death.

Misery, Alone

 

 

3)

There is no home now

walking on red glass, blood, pain

There won’t be, ever.

4)

Spoons of honey drip

into drooling mouths, no teeth

I hope I don’t know.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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That Darn Fantasy Scone

English: They baked up into a wonderful tender...

English: They baked up into a wonderful tender and flaky scone! (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I finally found the scone that I had fantasized about last week,( see post ” Cranky Is As Cranky Does, I’m Hungry…”) in a Viennese Pattisserie, where I’ve been to once before. At that precious moment, I did not have any common sense. I mean after all, this was not a British Bakery.

They had delicious looking pastries, cakes, and bite size mini-desserts. Once they had a plate of samples out but we were not in luck this particular day.

I see scones and I literally squeal with joy. I asked the lovely woman who worked there what flavor the scones were (of course only the one with the baked sugar frosting) and she told me: apple. Done. I ordered it and for the rest of the evening I dreamed about having the scone to go along with my one large, white mug (out of my favorite, well-fitting mug, the right thickness for my lips) of very strong coffee in the morning.

Once out of the bakery, my husband, looked at me as if I were out of my mind. “You’re not eating that now?” he asked. I stared back at him (you know “THE LOOK” implying after 25 years of marriage don’t you know me by now?) Of course I wouldn’t eat it on the spot, I was “Saving It.” Yes, I am one of those people. It’s neither right or wrong, it’s a style. I would never say he was right or wrong (I am always right.)

Maybe it was too much anticipation but my first taste of the scone in the morning was so hard and barely “chewable”, I thought my jaw would pop out again. I tried to soften it up in the microwave which helped a little but frankly not that much.

The last time I had scones was in England with my parents when I was a child and that was the real deal, of course I remember the clotted cream, the afternoon tea, the scones and small sandwiches which were without the dreaded crusts and the fresh sweetness of the strawberry preserves.

Yes, leave it to me to associate place by food only. That’s my job (and passion.) I’m on the look out now for something “breakfasty” to either buy or make (easy only) that’s soft like a muffin but doesn’t have as many calories yet a TINY BIT firmer like a GOOD scone, raisins are a must. Vegetables are okay, but I don’t have a chopper thing, delicious factor desperately needed..Simple and easy, a must. My stomach thanks you.

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FWF, Kellie Elmore- Image Prompt

Image Credit: We Heart It

The” haunted house” has always been in my neighborhood. When we were little we stayed away from it. When I became a teenager and my little sister, Dani, would annoy me I would tell her the ghosts from the haunted house would fly in our windows and take her if she wasn’t asleep. I thought it was funny, you know one of those older sister “things.”

When I was 15 I claimed that neglected house as my own. Eventually it became our crack house,but for the first few months it was our hang out. We’d go there every day, cutting Senior year’s “internship” program. We had a tight circle of five or six friends. We all brought drugs, I stole pills from my mother’s medicine cabinet, there was alcohol, weed, all of us brought food, Benny and Steve always had heroin, my best friend Jenny brought cocaine and chocolate chip cookies.

My parents had no idea of who I had become. All they did was fight with each other. It was pathetic how easy lying was. If you wanted to change your life, it was so simple.  Assholes. They didn’t even pay attention. My little sister played in her room, alone. She barely came out.

One night, at dinner, the tension between my parents was especially bad, thick like the humid rain forests, we had to study. Hard to breathe. I saw my  7-year-old sister sucking her thumb which she hadn’t done since she was 3. I was fed-up with their non-stop bickering but when I tried to say something both my parents would tersely say “not now Tess.”

I pushed my chair back from the table and left, telling them I had study group and they didn’t even question me about what class or where I was going, so I left. I headed to my real home, the crack house where I knew my friends were.


I sat on the floor next to Danny he lit up a joint and we shared a few beers. It felt so good. I tried to forget about mom and dad but it was hard. Danny said there was one thing that would help me forget all about it as we giggled together and he nuzzled into me and whispered in my ear “I have something special just for you.” He laughed and said “Baby. I promise you, it is the biggest high you will ever have, all your silly problems will melt away in a minute.” He showed me the heroin and the idea of escaping my miserable world was so tempting.”Since it’s your first time, I’ll even stay with you if you want.”

We kissed and I whispered “okay” in his ear. He looked so happy that I let him inject the heroin into my vein. First, from what I can remember, I felt amazing, lots of colors and sounds, I had no idea where I was but it was better than any place I had seen. I remember dancing to the music alone, smiling a lot.

Later on, I got paranoid and scared. I just remember screaming so loudly in my ear. Everywhere people were screaming and I couldn’t take all that noise, I cried from the pain, covered my ears with my hands but it did not go away. Hours later there was nobody left and the screaming remained. Apparently the screaming came from me.

I don’t know what happened after that, someone must have called the police because I just remember an ambulance coming and strapping me down. I screamed when I saw both my parents waiting at the hospital, holding hands? The nurse gave me a shot. I felt  asleep in seconds.

When I awakened I pretty much just felt stupid, only realizing then that my problems had just begun.I saw a glimpse of my little sister hiding behind the curtains. I tried to smile but she did not want anything to do with me. I didn’t blame her.

I really was sorry, I guess we all were. My parents decided we would all go to family therapy and they would go to couples counseling. I lived back at home and my relationship with my little sister got better, sometimes I even played with her in her room. The crack house had been gutted and cleared.

I was happy to see it go. More than happy.

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Cranky Is As Cranky Does…I’m HUNGRY

Chicken soup is a common classic comfort food ...

Chicken soup is a common classic comfort food that might be found across cultures. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

HELP WANTED: LOOKING FOR A SCONE ASAP OR EASY RECIPE

Yes, it’s true. I AM CRANKY and I don’t even need to explain it. I know. That’s enough. I don’t want pity and I can’t change the situations. My physical health, sigh, I have to accept. I’ll live. However, when my life’s joy, (vice,) hobby and life’s work is limited then it gets darned serious. No, I am not on a diet. That would be easy. I wish I was on a diet because there would be a reason and an outcome and a desired result.

But, with my bad luck, I have to be the one whose jaw blows out whose sound carried through the house leaving me shrieking in unbearable pain and crying that my husband came running. I knew I should have gone to the ER.

I saw my dentist, an oral surgeon and now I’m supposed to see a TMJ specialist. I’m not surprised, it was just another thing to heap on but for me, this was a personal tragedy. Not being able to EAT?  I don’t like drinking or smoking or anything else, I have no hobbies but one thing I love is food and now that has been taken away from me. I’m yearning for real food that is not mashed, white, banana-like or blended.

A fresh batch of homemade buttermilk scones.

A fresh batch of homemade buttermilk scones. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

And even if I tried to like drinking I have recently been informed that my kidneys are in bad shape too. Surprise!

I’m sick of chicken soup, vanilla milkshakes, rice and bananas. I long for warm, crunchy French bread dripping with butter, a large sandwich, basically anything I am now denied. I still want scones, pizza and a great big salad and did I mention scones?

I can’t bear to call another doctor tonight. I’m in no mood. It’s almost time for dinner, home-made chicken soup with mashed up Saltines in them, I learned that from my kids. Luckily, we have cupcakes from yesterday, they better taste good. I need something before I start to scream.

The oral surgeon also said that this pain will come back that some internal bleeding happened when the disk in my jaw slipped. He’s a nice guy, a really nice guy, he didn’t even charge for the five-minute consult but I wish he hadn’t said what he did.

I’m hungry, I want to eat real food, Last night I rebelled and tried (the operative word) to eat teeny, tiny bites of pizza with fork and knife (a la Diblasio ) which really was no fun at all and of course the pizza WAS BURNED.

Out of pure desperation I ate my husband’s filet of sole drenched in egg and butter:  I don’t even like fish but it was something different.

BUT, I want scones, surely I could eat those, sweet scones made with love and wild blueberries, I see them dancing beneath my eyes.

I wish I could bake with ease. With all my illnesses I just may have to acquire a new skill: baking. No more liquid diet. ‘Eat as if you were a three-year old” the charming doctor said. I will listen to him, cutting everything up into tiny pieces, everything for a taste of variety.

I’m stuck on muffins and stones. Any kind. Soon. Help me. Please?

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Jacquelyn: Were You At “The Taste 2” Finale?

English: Jean Claude Szurdak and Jacques Pepin...

English: Jean Claude Szurdak and Jacques Pepin (right) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Guest judge: Chef Jacques Pepin. In the finals, Marina, Lee and Louise.

The season of “The Taste” is over. As I’ve stated in earlier posts my highpoint of the show was when Jacquelyn exited mid-show, literally walking off stage. She is my Norma Rae. Nigella seriously needs to learn to play with others.

The first test was to make something for the poor and for the rich. It was so uninteresting it really didn’t matter what they made. Basically for the “rich” they added a lot more butter, truffles and caviar. For the “poor,” they all made a stew or soup.

Many past contestants in the audience: I see Cassie and Sarah, Shellie and Don, Audrey and Jay, among others; I am not making this up or exaggerating, I swear, I didn’t know who Audrey was because she didn’t mention “her fans” and she wasn’t complaining.The one person I wanted to see but DIDN’T was Jacquelyn. What, no invite? You people have NO sense of humor.

Final challenge: “Basic cooking: Make me breakfast, lunch and dinner bites that showcase your most dazzling skills.”

They tried. They did TRY.  I didn’t really think anyone made anything over the top that the judges actually swooned over. We’ve all seen good before, the last few episodes missed “stunning and amazing.”The finale did not break the “just ok” pattern. Shame.

Lee: Breakfast: Parmesan flan with bacon quail egg. He forgot that he left his parmesan flan in the oven but remembered at the last second. He saved his behind and put them in the cooler (not his behind, the flan) with bacon, eggs. Pure luck. Lunch: crab cake (he wastes a lot of time trying to get the crabs out of the shell) with avocado. Dinner: strip steak, cauliflower purée..” He was absolutely frazzled,or should I say fried?   Lee plates too soon doesn’t listen to Chef Jacques Pepin who advises him to plate later. Lee is acting cocky, doesn’t listen to the guest Chef.  Poor judgment. Dinner: Strip steak, parmesan tulle, mustard demi glace. Even with his fan favorite girlfriend Cassie giggling (did anyone else notice that rapid fire laugh) nothing could stop him or slow him down.

Marina:  (Chef Pepin looked a little befuddled around her) Marina starts with an (English muffin,?) quail egg, onion, fig and bacon. (“well executed”) :Lunch: Fried spring roll, oyster and pork, deemed (“not that successful.”) Dinner: short ribs, rice, kale, port wine.  She forgets to taste her own food, a definite no-no. Marina won’t take advice from anyone,she listens to no one, she prides herself on that. Marina used chicken testicles and pork blood. She certainly is imaginative. Have you cooked with chicken testicles and pork blood? Me either.

Louise: Breakfast: Fried quail egg with tomato sauce, (similar to Chef Pepin’s model that he displayed.) Lunch: fried oyster po’ boy sandwich, Dinner: steak with red wine sauce (which Chef Pepin salvaged)  potatoes, makes food look beautiful (she is also a food stylist.) She touches the steak and isn’t sure it is ready, Chef Pepin touches it and says 5 more minutes, in it goes. She is more needy and ready to listen to Jacques Pepin and believe me it shows. Her sauce breaks, she can’t use it. Chef Pepin helps her find a teaspoon of meat drippings again. Lousie feels like the underdog (again) and complains about something, was it brioche again? Much to everyone’s surprise, including Louise, she won “The Taste.”  As if she was in “Survivior” Louise flew under the radar, bothered no one, smiled a lot and portrayed herself as the victim.

3rd place LEE, 2nd place Marina, First place Louise

Congratulations? I mean, Congratulations.

The show is over. I’m done. We are all grateful. Would I watch it again? Probably.

*any error of description of food was unintentional and due to extreme fibromyalgia tiredness. I still am annoyed at the amount of alcohol on TV, just sayin’ sponsors?

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I Dream OF Cupcakes

Just the other day there was a persistent knock on our front door and a neighbor, who has cupcake1two young girls, was there holding out a plate of pink cupcakes. It was Valentine’s Day and school was  canceled because of yet another snowstorm so she was hoping to give them away to her neighbors.

My husband took two in and when I came downstairs and I saw these two mounds of sweet perfection I nearly wept. I wish I was dramatizing this but I am not. There, right in front of me were two vanilla (my absolute favorite flavor) with pink  icing and little white mounds of frosting on top  cupcakes. Shown to the right. I get happy just looking at the photo I took of the cupcake, yum.

I dreamed about them for the rest of the day, my saliva glands in overdrive, thinking about my pink cupcake, when I should have it, where I should have it but knowing for sure it would need an icy cold glass of milk to go with it. This was serious and I wasn’t going to muck it up for anything.

Sweets are very important to me and these, like angels from Heaven, gifts bestowed unto me, meant so much. There have been so many rough days behind us and I fear an equal amount of rough days ahead of us. These cupcakes were a respite from all that was bad and scary and unknown.

The randomness of a relative stranger, walking down the street in the snow to share her  cupcakes with her neighbors because she didn’t want to waste them was such a loving and kind thing.

Pink cupcakes. A random act of kindness. I will pay it forward…

Dedicated to A, J, and B

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What, Exactly, Is Happiness?

Rice pudding bowl

Rice pudding bowl (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I thought the  rice pudding that my husband bought me from the diner would make me happy but it just made me feel momentarily content. Twice. Now, there’s only one small portion left from the giant trough that he brought home on Sunday night. One, huge, tub of home-made rice pudding, the Reddi Whip had already melted, making it look like a floating swan on water, peaceful, gliding, making no trouble at all. A sensory satisfaction of taste.

It appeared to be a raisin and cinnamon revolution. Rice pudding with no raisins and no cinnamon? I was briefly unnerved but it was so tasty, rich, sweet and creamy that I really couldn’t complain. Tonight, the last night, I added my own raisins and cinnamon. For my tasting pleasure, now it is gone.

I need strength to feel settled tonight. I’m scared, there are just too many potential problems for too many people going on in the next three months. I’m much better when the time is NOW than weeks ahead of time but inside I know I am freaking out. Trembling as my bones quiver from the inside out, shaking so that anyone who knows me can see.

Too many people I love are sick at the same time. I am feeling at an all time low, physically and emotionally. My shoulders ache, the pain in my back still digs into me, not letting go or it moves to surprise me, to the side. Poke, Stab, Poke. Winter, does not just weigh heavily on the branches of the naked tree limbs but also on my tightened shoulders that lock in place; it takes hours for the heating pad to barely loosen them. I’ve tried the steamy hot baths, bath salts…nothing helps.

Maybe, I should just give up on Winter. This year, I was promised that I  could go to someplace warm to soothe my aching bones and muscles, and again, another lay off. No one’s fault. It’s just the way the world works these days. Trust no one. You are not safe.

Protect Yourself.

What is happiness, anyway?

It’s elusive.

A distant memory, aging photographs, some distinct thoughts of the past. Maybe it’s age or money or just a state of mind. I can’t seem to see it at the moment….

If I don’t have it, it doesn’t mean I don’t want YOU to have it, it just makes me a little sad to see those with luck, get luckier and those who are down on their luck, stay there and go deeper under the icy cold, black abyss.

My real friends understand, I don’t need to tell them I am hurting, they know. Or, if I mumble a quick “fine” or “I’m good” they will look into my eyes, the pathway to my soul and understand. THEY don’t look away. They stick with me through all days.

True Friendship.

True Friendship=Happiness

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Orange Is The New Black, Netflix

Orange Is The New Black

Orange Is The New Black (Photo credits: Giphy)

Dan-Dee-Lion

I will never, ever say the word dandelion in the same way again. Ever. In fact, even if I pronounced dandelion normally, I’m afraid I won’t picture the wispy flowering weed, the one children blow on to make a wish come true. No, that has been replaced by a character on a show called Orange Is The New Black, it’s the nickname for one of the show’s main character, said by an amazing actress that has “crazy eyes.”

When it comes to seeing movies or watching television shows the closest I have ever come to “scary” is Gray’s Anatomy. It’s really not that scary because we all know everything works out at the end. I will see depressing movies because afterwards I will feel relief that my life is so much better than what I saw but anything with a hint of mystery, suspense, thriller, scares me off like a shy pussy cat.

For some strange, unknown reason I have become totally obsessed with the Neflix series “Orange Is The New Black.” I had never heard of it until I watched The Golden Globes and I think it won an award for something. Why I decided to check this out, I have no idea but I watched the first episode, scary as hell (for me) and I’ve been watching ever since.

I’m still watching Season 1, episode 12 where a dead rat, I rate rodents in any form, ( inside my head I am chanting, this is fake, this is fake, this is fake ) but still, the fast moving element of shock, which is NOT good for someone with a startle reflex is, not one I enjoy. Ever.  I scream aloud. That said, this series is all about scary surprises, and revolting images and it goes at a very quick pace. If you are planning to watch the show don’t read the next line because I’m going to describe three scenes where I almost barfed but you may want to see the drama. 1) A very mean guy, prominent in the show urinates into this huge tub of gravy, 2) a woman with crazy eyes pees on the floor of a woman she is infatuated with AND her meticulous roommate  3) someone is handed a blood soaked tampon as a sandwich. Had enough? You would think I would have too yet I kept watching.

Trust me, no one is more surprised than me. There is romance, mystery, gay and hetero love/sex/ relationships, betrayal and it changes every minute. I think that’s why I love/hate this series, It keeps you guessing and it pushes me WAY out of my comfort zone. Basically, over the edge of my comfort zone on a high cliff and tumbling into a black abyss.

I keep on jumping and shrieking again and again.  I’m actually proud of myself for doing this,  sticking this out, both pain and pleasure. It may not be bungee jumping but for me, it’s a step.  Having said that maybe I will be open to Weeds or another edgy series. I’ve started with one, I may never go back to plain, vanilla, sweet and comforting, television, you never know. Right now, it would feel like a vacation.

Photo credit, Giphy

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