Taking Care

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While we in New England and elsewhere have been bundling up against this Polar Vortex, I have been fighting off a chest cold/lung infection. I am pretty sure it was brought on by stress and the bitter cold. It happens every year so I suppose I should be used to it.

I try to have a combination of traditional meds along with some all natural curatives on hand at all times. I drink lots of water and tea. While my tea is steeping, I stick my head over the cup and inhale and let the steam get up into my nasal passages. I always have my humidifiers going as well.
Soup does wonders! I made a quick and easy ramen today. I sauteed mushrooms, zucchini and thinly sliced top round beef. I then added that mixture to the all natural (no junk or MSG added)Ginger & Lemongrass Ramen Noodle pack I picked up at Whole Foods. Scrumptious!

My Doc had recently recommended a generic long-lasting Tussin (cough med). It does work, quiets me right down (must be the alcohol in it!). I am also armed with Tylenol Sinus. For all natural I use a sinus tea from Farmacy Herbs (The Finest Sinus) that I pick up from the Saturday Farmer’s Market. They also carry a Lung Lovers syrup I will try this season. Elderberry Syrup has helped stave off our colds every year.

To de-stress, I usually go to a yoga class, but I am sure my classmates don’t want to hear me hack up my lungs while attempting my 5th Sun Salutation in a row! Not exactly Namaste. My couch has been comfy. I have been reading and taking deep breaths and pushing the bad thoughts out after letting them in ever so briefly. I mean we do need to face them and acknowledge them don’t we? The latest  food and shelter magazines definitely have a calming effect.

 

 

I look forward to warmer temps & cheering on the Patriots this weekend while I try to avoid being prescribed Predisone(I have asthma and it is a necessary medicine sometimes) and antibiotics.
What kinds of remedies do you swear by when hit with a cold or general malaise in the dead of Winter?

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A Scrumptious Start

A couple of weeks ago, during the hustle bustle of the Holiday season, my Mom asked me to breakfast. She had been wanting me to try this tiny gem of restaurant called Kitchen.

What took me so long?! This place is fantastic!

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I started with a fine, smooth cup of coffee while trying to decide what to order. Pancakes, French Toast, Eggs, decisions, decisions. To be quite honest I don’t have much of a sweet tooth at breakfast so I opted for a traditional omelette with feta, mushrooms & spinach.

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This restaurant is aptly named. It’s as if we were guests in the owner’s kitchen (the best room in the house). Every dish is made to order & frankly seemed prepped to order! My omelette was divine. Thick sliced sautéed mushrooms, fresh spinach cooked just so, with just the right amount of feta melted & tasty with every bite.

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On the side came perfectly cooked delectable home fries and crunchy rye toast.
I now have 3 words for you: Bacon, Bacon and Bacon.

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In case you didn’t hear me the first time: Bacon! Pretty sure the chef has a big pig back there where he slices meat to order. This was such amazing bacon (worth the $$ for a side. Order it!), I had to make sure I wasn’t making some inappropriate facial expression while I was savoring every bite.
As we were enjoying our breakfasts my Mom told me how amazing their muffins are so we each ordered one to go.

I have drastically reduced my carb intake lately, but this amazing chocolate raspberry muffin made me forget all of my carb concerns. A friend was visiting so I grilled up the muffin the next day & we split it. It was so good, we found ourselves looking around my kitchen for another half! Scoffed that muffin up it was scrumptious. Chocolate & raspberry is an irresistible combination. The muffin was light and fluffy and not the least bit dense.
Everything was so delicious in this tiny restaurant, I cannot wait to go back.
Yes, you may have to wait for a table. We’re hearty New Englanders, just bundle up it’s so worth it.
Kitchen is located on the West Side of Providence, RI at 94 Carpenter St. Hours are W-F 7:30-1pm and Sat/Sun 7:30am-4pm. Cash Only!
Make a great start to your New Year and head to Kitchen.

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A Perfect Pairing

Some things pair up so nicely: bread and butter, apples and caramel, wings and beer, bacon and pancakes. At this time of year one of my favorite pairings is avocado and tomato!
My alarm NEVER went off this morning!! Consequently, I was rushing around the apt., guzzling iced coffee and throwing together tasty tidbits to bring to work for breakfast and for my lunch.

Due to my lateness I ended up having to make up the time by eating lunch at my desk. Not very appealing considering it was gorgeous outside, but I made up for it. I had the perfect, most heavenly pairing for lunch:
Little City Growers Heirloom tomato on avocado slices spread on toasted Seven StarsCountry
bread. Yumm! The avocado was so creamy, perfectly spreadable and ripe. I smooshed it onto the slightly crunchy bread, topped with room temp(never cold!!) sliced, sweet tomato sprinkled ever so slightly with sea salt and pepper.
Heaven in my belly. I don’t ever want tomato season to end!
The rest of the day flew by.

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The little things

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“When lilacs last in the dooryard bloom’d,
And the great star early droop’d in the western sky in the night,
I mourn’d, and yet shall mourn with ever-returning spring.
Ever returning spring, trinity sure you bring,
Lilac blooming perennial and drooping star in the west,
And thought of him I love.

In the dooryard fronting an old farmhouse near the white-washed palings,
Stands the lilac-bush tall-growing with heart shaped leaves of rich green,
With many a pointed blossom riding delicate, with the perfume strong I love,
With every leaf a miracle-and from this bush in the dooryard,
With delicate-color’d blossoms and heart-shaped leaves of rich green,
A sprig with its flower I break.”
Walt Whitman

A sprig or two I did indeed break. I couldn’t help it. I adore lilacs. A beautiful color. They are so very fleeting!!! I inhale the subtle perfume, a smile comes to my face & my blues disappear.
Alas, no Lilac bush in my backyard. I did have to roam a bit to find some. Just a bush with plenty of blooms to spare. I certainly don’t want to hog all of the Lilacs!
I have a small bunch now. I am happy.
It’s the little things that mean so much.

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Sending Comfort

A friend’s Mom passed away recently. The news left me feeling sad for my friend & a bit helpless. Obviously we cannot take away the pain one feels when they lose someone dear, but we want to do whatever we can to alleviate the pain & sorrow.

Sending a card just wasn’t enough so I decided to bake brownies. Blondie Brownies to be exact. I love them as they are chewy, butterscotchy & laced with just enough chocolate from the chips. I am not a huge baker. Most of the time the precise nature of baking makes me anxious. This recipe however, from Martha Stewart was super easy & quick.

When the brownies were done, I let them cool, scored them so they would be easy to cut(okay, I may have cut off a corner to taste test), wrapped them up tightly in Saran Wrap & wrapped again in tin foil. Found the perfect box, wrote a note & express mailed them to his house.
As I was stirring the batter & adding the chips & walnuts I felt so calm. I love cooking for friends & loved ones. It is my way of showing I love & care for them. Frankly, I find cooking& baking to be very therapeutic. I found my sadness had lifted & I felt happy to do something for someone else.
“Those we love remain with us for live itself lives on, and cherished memories never fade because a loved one’s gone. Those we love can never be more than a thought apart. For as long as there is a memory, they’ll live on in our hearts.” Author Unknown……

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Grateful

It was a crisp, sunny Saturday. A tentative start to the weekend considering the week & Patriot’s Day, started violent and chaotic. I had also found out a friend’s Mom had just passed away, so was feeling sad.
Normally the girls & I spend much of Saturday cleaning, but it was Record Store Day & Emma begged to head out.
You know what?! Lets do this, the dishes can wait!
We made our way to Thayer Street,

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Where the trees were coming into bloom. First stop for Record Store Day? ChrisChris & JenniferJennifer Daltry’s cool spot: What Cheer Antiques & Records. Emma was in record heaven & we enjoyed a live performance from The Feelies.

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While Emma was picking out her records, Zoe & I went to The Brown Bookstore. She is a voracious reader & wanted to treat herself to a new book.
At this point we were starving and bordering on crabby( not me!!), so we drove over to our fave coffee spot on the West Side: White Electric Coffee. I love their veggie wraps with green goddess dressing accompanied by an iced coffee.

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Emma informed us we had one more stop on this Record Store Day adventure: Olympic Records
A gem of a store at the end of Wickenden St. in the Fox Point neighborhood.

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While Emma added more vinyl to her ever growing collection, Zoe played pinball & I soaked in the scenery,
We headed home feeling beat but happy.
I was proud of myself for relaxing & relishing these moments with my kids. It is so important to be present & enjoy time with my family. I am grateful I am healthy & have the time to spend.
Peace & love……..

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Morning!

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On the blustery morning I needed a good pick me up!
I decided to brew up some New Harvest Coffee Cycle Drome. A mild, bright brew with a woodsy aroma. I brew in a French Press. I feel it brews a wonderfully smooth cup of coffee.
Now to figure out what to have for breakfast!

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