Sunday, September 30, 2012

a joyful heart

"You turned my wailing into dancing; you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy, that my heart may sing your praises and not be silent. Lord my God, I will praise you forever." Psalm 30:18-19

Friday, September 28, 2012

Maple-Dijon Roasted Veggies

Sam was on a low-microbial diet after transplant and during most of chemo which meant fresh fruits and veggies were off the table. I was constantly on the lookout for new recipes that everyone would enjoy, and this one has become a family favorite. Even now, after he's been given clearance to add some fresh food back in his diet, I still find myself roasting vegetables all the time. I chop everything up the night before (or even a few days in advance) so I can pull dinner together quickly when Jack is having a life crisis on the kitchen floor.

Maple-Dijon Roasted Veggies

3 Tablespoons real Vermont maple syrup
3 Tablespoons Dijon mustard
3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 large sweet potato, peeled and cut into 3-inch sticks (like fat French Fries)
1/2 butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into 3-inch sticks 
4 carrots, peeled and cut into 3-inch sticks

Preheat the oven to 425.
     Lay out your vegetables on a large baking sheet. Mix the maple syrup, mustard, olive oil, salt and pepper together in a small bowl. Pour the mixture over the veggies and mix all round with your hands to evenly coat. Roast, stirring occasionally, until browned and cooked through, about 25 minutes.

Serves 4.

recipe source: my father's daughter by gwyneth paltrow

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Beef Stew

I came across this recipe in Ann Hodgman's Beat This! cookbook. It's a funny little book, filled with lots of really great recipes. This beef stew could not suit my current life more perfectly. I chop everything up the night before, dump it all in a dutch oven the next day, pop it in the oven, and forget about it for the next 5 hours. It does use a can of Campbell's Tomato Bisque soup which, I know, will send some of you into a tailspin. I strongly advise against trying to sub something else in. I've tried and so has Ms. Hodgman. Take a deep breath and get out your can opener. It's going to be OK.

Beef Stew

2 pounds of stew meat (I cut up a chuck roast)
6 carrots, cut into thick slices
2 large onions, coarsely chopped
1 large baking potato, cut into large cubes
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 can Campbell's Tomato Bisque soup
1/2 soup can water, dry red wine or beer (I use wine because, well, have we met?)

Preheat the oven to 275 F.
     Combine the beef, veggies and bay leaf in a lidded casserole dish. Sprinkle the seasonings over all and mix well. Combine the soup and your liquid of choice in a small bowl and pour it over the stew ingredients. Cover the dish tightly with aluminum foil and then with the lid.
     Bake the stew for 5 hours (she recommends checking to make sure there's still liquid halfway through, but this has never been an issue for me).

Serves 6

Monday, September 24, 2012

Officially Back to Work! Day +174

Today was Sam's first official day back to work since October 2011! To say he's excited would be a ridiculous understatement. He's been pacing around like a caged lion for months. His doctor has recommended he move to monthly visits since he is doing so well, and his medications have continued to decrease every week.

Praise. the. Lord.

Always. And most definitely today.

some after dinner fun

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Day +155 Still Doing Great!

The results of Sam's most recent PET scan and bone marrow biopsy have come back clear! His bone marrow appears to be fully comprised of donor cells, an indication that the donor cells have successfully engrafted. As if this day couldn't get any better, he's also been given the green light to return back to work soon. For those of you who know Sam, you know he's been going just a little bit crazy not being able to work. His work family at Helena Chemical Company has been absolutely incredible through this whole process. From his initial diagnosis, never once has Sam had to worry about his job. When we set off for New York, Sam was given one assignment- Get Better.  We are excited and proud to be part of such an amazing company.

Jack is doing great. Growing big and keeping me on the run.

Life is so good.