July 20th, 2014

here I come to save the day!

Foods that don't need to be chewed

I think I've decided to have both of my gum grafts done at the same time, so that I only have to endure one week of restrictive recovery, rather than two. But that means that I'll have a week with no chewing permitted at all, since I'm having one graft done on each side of my mouth. So I've been doing a lot of brainstorming about foods I like that I would still be able to have.

I've been offered the loan of a dishwasher-safe food processor large enough to puree a couple servings of something (refried beans, smoothies, etc.) in one go, instead of dirtying lots of dishes every time I prepare a meal. I've also been offered the loan of a hand blender for the smaller stuff, but this needs to be cleaned by hand & that might discourage me from using it, especially if I'm not feeling tip-top.

I also figure I can cook a few servings' worth of jook, dal, etc., at once & then refrigerate the leftovers for later meals.I can do some of this stuff in advance. I can even freeze some of it for defrosting later in the week, and there are a lot of foods I could get at Trader Joe's that would only need to be heated up. Again, I'm figuring that anything I can do to make things easier will help a lot.

chocolate (let it melt in my mouth)
rice pudding, tapioca pudding, chocolate pudding, etc.
ice cream or frozen yogurt
ice cream sandwiches (let the "sandwich" part dissolve in my mouth before swallowing)
pumpkin pie, cream pies, etc. (not the crust, obviously)
light, fluffy cake (let it dissolve in my mouth before swallowing, possibly soak in milk)
pancakes (lots of syrup, let them dissolve in my mouth before swallowing)
very mushy bread pudding (with whipped cream or ice cream)

smoothies (can add lots of extra nutritious stuff: veggies, nut butter, yogurt, etc.)
nutrition drinks
mashed banana (maybe with Nutella, nut butter, etc.) - could also heat up for variety
hummus (can be made with various additions and seasonings for variety)
nut butter (especially Nuttzo!)
really ripe avocado
light, fluffy cornbread (let it dissolve in my mouth before swallowing)
chopped liver? (not sure if I like this - I've never tried it - but it might satisfy a meat craving if I have one)
plain jook
tomato soup, split pea soup, miso soup, egg drop soup, cold cucumber soup, and lots of different kinds of pureed soups
very mushy refried beans (maybe with cheese melted on top)
mashed potatoes (maybe with gravy and/or a side of smooth cranberry sauce)
soft scrambled eggs (maybe with melted cheese, seasonings like pesto, etc.)
soft polenta (maybe with melted cheese, non-lumpy tomato sauce, etc.)
mushy dal (lots of different flavors possible)
tons of Ethiopian dishes (lots of different flavors possible)
cheesy grits
milk-soaked bread
baked, mashed sweet potato

Edited to Add: Note to self: Talk to periodontist about my chronic anxiety issues, as these may be an issue during the surgery (as they were during my second cataract surgery). This may influence what kind of anesthesia he gives me.
art, collage


A quote I came across recently:
Love doesn't die a natural death. Love has to be killed, either by neglect or narcissism. Those guilty of these two crimes of the heart always hide behind excuses convenient; too ashamed, lacking in integrity and courage to face the truth. To them, it is always something other than their own actions, desires and self-importance that dictate circumstances. For these people, so blind to truth, true love can never be fully experienced for they have never really given of themselves all that they are."—Frank Salvato
From what I can tell online, this guy is a complete ass, but this particular quote speaks to me, in light of my recent life events and emotions.

Shannon and I went out to brunch together today at IHOP, which was a tremendous treat. Shannon is rarely interested in going to brunch, but I've been feeling very emotional lately (for no reason I can determine, except perhaps the prospect of the gum grafts in the all-too-recent wake of the cataract surgeries) & so he suggested it as a treat for me. I had french toast with strawberries and bananas, and it was fabulous.

My right foot has been continuing to hurt a lot, but Shannon points out that I haven't been doing the calf stretches (the ones recommended by the podiatrist) for all that long. It's been nearly 2 weeks, and I am impatient. I love walking, and it's annoying to have to take the bus all the time instead. Also, it makes me feel like an old person as I limp along, stepping gingerly on my right heel. I would ride my bike more, but it seems like I'm always going from CWC to some sort of doctor appointment, and the distances and road safety often make it difficult enough that I prefer to take the bus. Tomorrow I have nothing planned but CWC, so I plan to ride my bike, barring unexpected drama.

For the past couple weeks, I've been doing tremendous reorganizing (or perhaps simply organizing, since it was never particularly organized before) in my office. This includes most of my personal stuff: not only the obvious office supplies, but also all of my art supplies, all of my jewelry and headbands, my health paraphernalia (medications, physical therapy tools, etc.), and all that sort of thing. I loooooove organizing. This is a large project, involving a lot of sorting and classifying, finding appropriately sized containers to keep like items with like (and away from unlike), deciding which types of like things should go into which size containers for best efficiency, etc. It's taking forever, and it's totally fun.

I've also been doing a lot of coloring in my very detailed "Secret Garden" coloring book. I've been enjoying the hell out of gel pens, because the colors are deeply saturated. It's possible to achieve really bright colors, densely solid metallic colors, etc. I now understand why Crystal and Julia have been so addicted to gel pens for the past several months. I keep shopping for more gel pens & adding more to my Amazon wish list & buying more so that I have an even wider variety of subtly different shades. The pens run out of ink pretty quickly, so I predict a lot of my disposable income going to gel pens in the foreseeable future.

Coloring with the gel pens has been the one thing that is most often distracting and enjoyable for me when the headaches are bad. It doesn't require any actual thinking, but it still absorbs my attention. It helps me stay alert when Shannon is reading to me or when we're watching tv. The coloring and the organizing have been my chief joys lately, but the office organization is very thinky & so I can't do it when the headaches are bad.

I've also taken to eating coffee ice cream upon occasion, when the headaches are bad but I can't take any more Tylenol #4 yet. Medically necessary ice cream ... it's a hard life, I know.

There was something else I was going to write about, but my head is hurting (yes, a familiar refrain) & so I can't think of what it was. I'm sure it was crucially important. Not.