It's true. Yesterday was my birthday. I basically took a day off. It was great and I even went for a run (well, jog) and got a massage. But even if I hadn't been able to treat myself and relax, I think I would have ranked it as one of my best birthdays ever. I have - as Stella would put it - a bazillion lillion papillion gazillion things to be thankful for, and yesterday both Jeff and Stella made me beautiful cards, a lot of people sent me kind words, I got some beautiful flowers, and Lydia laughed and laughed while I was changing her into her pajamas at bedtime. Life isn't always easy, and I hesitate, without expounding, to repeat the trite phrase, "life is good," but yesterday was a really nice day. And life, all things considered, IS good.
In lymphoma-related news, Jeff's mouth has not begun to hurt quite as much as it did last time around... yet. It remains to be seen whether the symptoms of mucositis are going to intensify further or sort of taper off. Meanwhile, I am cooking through more of our dear readers' recipe suggestions and Jeff is laying off acidic, citrusy, and/or crunchy foods. Perhaps his cautious approach is helping? He is definitely jonesing for everything he can't eat. So that sucks.
Thus far this round I have remade the trusty ginger chicken jook (I tinker a bit with the recipe in that link). This time, per E-Pan's suggestion, I modified it a little further to make it in the slow cooker, with great success. I adore the slow cooker. The only downside is setting something to cook overnight and then waking up in the middle of the night, drowsy and confused by the smell of food cooking. But, it's a small price to pay for the convenience factor.
I also made Smitten Kitchen's sweet corn spoonbread, per Karen's suggestion. It is great.
Stella helped me bake it. I would highly recommend making this spoon bread with fresh corn, or freezing some fresh corn and then making it for Thanksgiving. Jeff has been eating it with my slow cooker pinto beans and also with creamy double-mushroom soup (suggested by Amber on Facebook), which is quite, quite tasty and rich. If you like mushrooms, this would be the perfect soup for you. It's bursting with creminis and accented with porcinis (at least as I made it). Basically it's mushrooms to the MAX. We're not eating it with croutons at the moment thanks to mucositis, but I think it would be amazing with homemade garlic or cheesy croutons.
That's all the news I have to report for the moment. I'm soon to retrieve Lydia from her practice days with the nanny before I return to work in just a few short weeks and I have to pick up Stella from her first day at a new preschool campus. Exciting times.