Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Meet Nurse Ratched

I'm back from places south. It was wonderful seeing my dearest friend! Not the best of circumstances brought me there, but it was nice and fun all the same. Sweet Jane underwent her third chemo session and I was her assistant! It is a lot of work, this staying well while undergoing chemo, and Jane does it with such style and determination your head spins. My job was to be Nurse Ratched. I made sure the 3-4 liters of water were drunk, the daily mile-long walk was walked, and the separation of carbs and protein was enforced!

must say I was tempted at times to say, oh just forget the walk, take a nap, or never mind the water... but nope, not possible, not if we're going to clobber the nasty cancer and keep Jane strong.

We started every morning with a Howie Breakfast pictured above, named for the friend who introduced it to her. Its important to have as many colors of fruit you've got the gumption to cut up. Squeeze a little lemon juice on it...Yummers! We had lots of meals with colorful veggies using the same principal of multi-colors. We had filet of sole, rolled up with watercress and poached; sear-roasted salmon served with asparagus and thinly sliced carrots; Mediterranean Fish Stew; and Borsht with a dollop of Greek yogurt. My Kale Salad was Jane's favorite, so I'll share it with you too.

Kale Salad

Cider vinegar
Red onion
Red bell pepper
Safflower oil
Sesame oil
Soy sauce (if soy is ok in your diet)
Toasted sesame seeds
Salt if you want it

Take a big bunch of Kale, remove the woody stems and slice thinly. Put it in a big bowl and toss with cider vinegar, enough to coat it but not pool on the bottom of the bowl. You can let it sit a bit while you do the rest, the vinegar will "cook" the Kale, wilt it
Now slice a little red onion, and red pepper in thin little pieces. Add enough of each so the salad looks pretty, but still predominantly green. Next add a little oil, I use safflower but canola is fine. Not a lot, a tablespoon at most. Add a good bit of sesame oil, especially if you like it. Splash in some soy sauce (unless you can’t have it because of the estrogen). Mix it all up, I use my hands.
on sesame seeds for the final touch!

Yum, I could eat it all day.
Till the cows come home.

The best part of the trip was just being able to spend time with Jane, like we used to long ago. We watched a great BBC mini series called House of Cards featuring a
ghoulishly corrupt politician, that had us saying: "You might say that-I couldn’t possibly comment" . We had such a nice slothful time that we watched the 2 sequels too, To Play the King and Final Cut. We enjoyed Kombucha, a fermented tea drink that gives you a little pep and tastes like fizzy vinegar only good. I promise. Jane’s 3 kooky Standard Poodles, Katy, Lucy, and Kobe led our walks. We watched ebay live auctions! And although I was the Water Nazi and The Mighty and Fearless Mouse Killer, they were 4 wonderful solid gold days.

Mouse Killer? Did I forget to tell you that story? The Glamorous Life of the Chair? Knitting? Are there lots of other stories to tell...?… You might say that-I couldn’t possibly comment.


sophia said...

nice story mom. i like the pic.
see you in 8 days.

jennhx said...

Jane is truly blessed to have a friend like you.

Thanks for the recipe too -- I [heart] kale! Yum! I'm going to try this recipe this week! :)

Gina said...

Are a great friend! And I am sure that Jane is a great friend, otherwise you wouldn't be so stern about those walks and such. The kale salad sounds lovely. I will have to make it for my bunch -- they love kale.

magnusmog said...

I'm glad you are enjoying some good old british drama. That is a great show. See if you can get hold of a newer drama called State of Play. It would be a great reward for all your hard work and friendship this last while :)

Mary Jane said...

Thanks you guys! I'm going down again for her last treatment, 2ns week in June. I wish I lived nearer to her, but she was on the Oregon coast, THAT would be some commute! And Magnusmog, I'll get State of Play for next time!

Miss Frugality said...

All that colourful food plus the company of friends ...sounds like the best medicine.
I was watching reruns of House of cards not too long ago.It definitely stands the test of time.For the next wee while for every question the reply might say that.....

Kristin said...

Hi MJ. Sounds like a good trip despite the reasons for your visit. I recently watched the new BBC edition of Jane Eyre and enjoyed it. I would be happy to lend it to you for your next trip down, just stop by the store(no charge, of course) and pick it up.
I will be trying your kale salad soon-i know I need the greens at this yime of year!

DownWithTyranny said...

I'll try the kale salad tomorrow. I've been eating those breakfasts for 5 years now-- as part of a treatment for cancer. The first person I ever served it to was Howard Dean. I loved making them for Jane every morning.

Mary Jane said...

Wowie Howie! Jeepers Creepersf! Thanks for the visit! I'm having your breakfasts now just because they make me happy!

Pam (Jane's sister) said...

Jane and I loved the Kale Salad today !! She read it to me and I gave up the top of my ring finger for it !! She also had salmon with mustard sauce, and 3 litres of water. Pam.

Mary Jane said...

I see Pam has taken on the role of Nurse Ratched with gusto! Those 3 litres are soooo huge, but Janey is a trooper!