09 May 2008


My inheritance:

  • I seem to be paralleling my mom lately. She has many allergies to foods, which have progressively gotten worse over the years, chiefly ones containing (but not limited to) preservatives such as the "-ites" and "-ates". Her face turns bright red, itchy, and she gets stuffy. She takes Benedryl before some meals, particularly if she eats in a restaurant because, with someone else preparing the food, one really has no way of knowing what chemicals are being ingested through the sauces and flavorings from the industrial kitchens. That one pill (or sometimes two) helps, although she still has the symptoms. She also carries an EpiPen with her. Oh, yes, I'm trained on how to use them (although I would prefer not to...have you ever seen the size of the needle!?), as I have had children in the classroom who have also had severe allergies (let's not discuss if I could actually run all the way to the school office and back in time to get the EpiPen and use it). I also know we have a maximum of only twenty minutes to get her to a hospital if I use it because that's how long the epinephrine will last. Scary all around.
My point:
  • I have had four episodes (eek) of her same symptoms in the past few weeks--just a beet-red face, no itching or stuffiness (yet). So far I can't pinpoint exactly what the item or items may be that are causing it. I can feel it within a bite or two of the offending meal, first on my ears (they feel like they are on fire from a bad sunburn). My husband (I so love him) looks at me with a worried look and jokingly asks me about my gene pool.
My whine:
  • I love my occasional glass of wine, my salmon, my--well, whatever it is that's causing the over-reaction of my body. I'm sure I will absolutely crave whatever it is when I discover it. Argh. Oh, my, what if the chemical compound is also in chocolate? I may not survive the trauma.
I'm just saying.

07 May 2008

seeing red

Strawberry season is in full swing here. The deep red color throughout the freshly picked fruit as well as the intense flavor puts the strawberries one can purchase in the grocery store to shame. I have been busy freezing whole strawberries for summer ice cream and smoothies. So far I have also made 36 half-pint jars of strawberry jam, both with Splenda and with sugar. Why so many? I tend to share the jam with friends and family. I love the smell of the fruit when it is simmering on the stove, the red stain on my wooden spoon, and hearing the snap-pop of the lids when they seal as the jam cools in the jars.