Quote of the Day


how to support a family navigating a long-term hospitalization and illness

Every once in a while I like to repost this list of ways to support a family who is navigating a long-term hospitalization.  Now is as good a time as any.
reposted from 2007

You'll note that most of these are things that help the injured person's family, not the injured person. Go love on the loved ones.

While they are in the first few days:

We collectively -- and I individually -- received piles of cards from people - often from people that were just in the circle of our circle. Every single card was a blessing. In a way, it is just saying "Hey, this IS a big deal and even those of us way out here in acquaintance-land can see that it is a big deal." Of course no one says that out-right -- they all say the same thing, really -- but the meta-message is that they noticed that our world had just crashed.

Care Package for the family members who are sitting vigil. We received these and they were SUPER appreciated:

Go love on the loved ones.

  • slip-on woollie slippers for those sitting at bedside. Hospital floors are cold.
  • notepads and pens - encourage the family to establish a medical log-book. Why? See the medical log-book post.
  • a pretty blank journal that visitors can sign in and leave love notes for savoring later
  • chapstick
  • hand lotion - lavender is clean smelling and has a bit of a perking-up effect, as does lemon
  • healthful snacks with shelf-life or small portions of protein snacks that have no shelf-life. A bit of cheese with a handful of good crackers in a pretty napkin - wonderful. A small cup of hot brothy easy-to-sip soup.
  • boxed juices
  • a little lavender sachet
  • a mini-manicure kit (we were amazed at how often we reached for this)
  • a long bit of string or ribbon and a box of paper clips for a greeting card garland - much wiser than tape if they expect to be discharged or transfered very soon.
  • prayer shawls for drafts (for the patient or the watcher)
  • postage stamps and note-cards
  • SOFT tissues
  • if you are making up a care package, avoid baskets that -- though cute -- take up a great deal of counter-space.

If you have ideas to add to this list, let me know in the comments.

If the injured person is going to be there for awhile, or at a nursing home:
  • scotch tape for posting family pictures on the walls
  • reading material - My Mom said that she really appreciated these: Christian Science Monitor "they always have an article about something pleasant"; Peace Like a River - "books where people overcome hard things and give encouragement that maybe someway my world will be okay too."; The Week: all you need to know about everything that matters.
  • I remember glancing through Reader's Digest& National Geographic, things that you can look at and read and forget that you read over and over again.
  • a little ice-chest for keeping snacks
  • snacks: little cheese, whole-grain biscuits, fruit, juices
  • more notecards and postage stamps and nice pens
When you phone or visit:
Most importantly, DON'T ask the family of the injured person to make you feel better. I can't tell you how many times I found myself trying to comfort others. They didn't intend that, but it went that way anyway, like this:
Other: Oh I can't tell you how badly we feel.
Me: Thanks. It's pretty scary.
Other: I can't image how awful this if for you all. Your poor mother.
Me: Mom's holding up pretty well, considering. . .
Other: Oh but if it were me, I'd just . . .
Me: No, you'd be stronger than you think; you have to be.
Other: Well, it's sounds so awful, I just feel terrible. I cried all night for you all.
Me: We'll be okay. It will all be okay.
Other: Such a terrible accident . . .
Me: I'm sorry, I have to go now.
They didn't intend it at all, but we ended up talking about THEM! When my Dad is in ICU/life-flight/ward 7/nursing home/rehab, I don't care how they feel. I do care very much what they can do to help.

Other: What a hard time for your family. How can I help?
Me: Go pick up the family dogs and make sure they are safe and fed.
Me: Drop by the house and make sure the mail is picked up and there is ready-to-eat food in the fridge, that the kitchen garbage is empty and the garbage can gets to the street on the right day.
In other words, express your care and then keep your conversation to practical aid, and not about how badly you feel, because, no matter how badly you feel, they feel worse. Which brings us to the topic of encouragement and support.

If the person you are interacting with is actually taking a much bleaker view of things than the medical situation warrants, then indeed offer encouragement. But if the situation is rather bleak, as ours was, please offer support. Here is an excerpt from my thoughts on encouragement vs support that I shared about 5 months post-injury.

[ . . . ] It is the difference between offering encouragement versus offering support. Encouragement says, 'have hope that things will get better'. Support says, 'wow, this sounds really tough.'

The underlying theme of encouragement is, 'it had better get better, because as is, it sounds pretty hard,' but encouragement doesn't go to the hard place with you. It just tries to rush you past it and onto better days. If your situation is not going to resolve quickly, the rushing appears to be for the other's benefit (not having invest anything into sharing empathy). It is certainly not to the benefit of whomever is struggling.

Another way of looking at is is that people who give empathy are joining me where I am: sad, grieving, fearful. People offering encouragement are asking me to join them where they are: hopeful, optimistic, un-burdened. I think on whole, we have handled Dad's injury as positively as possible, but this doesn't mean I don't grieve. And when I am grieving (approximately every day that has a y in it), I don't want to be pushed back to the happy-place. I need to be supported in the sad place.

So, I have learned that I far prefer empathy over encouragement. How about you?

How then can you provide support?
  • Ask if the on-duty vigil sitter would like a little break. Would they like you to stay? or to accompany them on a little walk? Try to get them outside for a bit of air.
  • Ask for a chore or errand. Accidents happen in the middle of to-do lists at home. If you can step in and take over one of the dangling tasks you can give a little relief. We were out of goat hay and needed a bale picked up. Ask if you can drop off the library books, pick up stuff, drop-off or eggs & bread, take the garbage out, and so forth.
  • Ask "how may we pray" and then ask "would you like to pray now, or shall I take these requests with me". Sometimes we needed prayer right that minute, sometimes we needed to know that we would be lifted up later. Sometimes both.
  • Ask "Would you like to tell how this happened? or are you sick of it for today?" On some days Dad wanted to tell all the gory details, someday he dreaded it.
  • Ask the family members, "How are you doing?" Be prepared for them to either look glibly resilient or to sob on your shoulder, or both, simultaneously. They don't know how they are doing, they've never done this before.
  • If the family has small children or grandchildren, take them off their mom's hands for a few minutes. People came to see Dad and ended up touring the nursing home with my kids so that I could serve Dad. They will never know how much we appreciated them.
  • Recognize that the nursing staff does not meet all the patient's needs, just all the medical needs. The family does the rest and they are busy and tired. Help them. Dad was very very high-maintenance, though I bet he does not remember this.
When the family returns home (with or without their patient)

Cards. again. It's a new stage and they need to know you are with them.

~ a terrific free and easy-to-use website for coordinating helpers when we got to that stage. This website acts as a hub for listing and filling needs and saves everyone from tiresome phonecalls. (edited to add this link to a great post on LotsaHelpingHands.)

Here is a short list of really useful ways to bless them:
  • Mow their lawn.
  • Load them up with paper plates, napkins, and glasses.
  • Meals, obviously. And for A LOT longer than you think. Meals that can be a lunch or a dinner are especially thoughtful. Here is a link to two recipes that were brought to our home. Deliver meals in containers that are clearly labeled ("OK to toss or give to Goodwill"). The family you are supporting does not need to be burdened with casserole dish tracking.
  • Fill up their pantry with healthful beverages - if they are in shock, thirst returns before appetite, help them quench their thirst with nutritious beverage.
  • As you move though your day of errands and chores, ask yourself who is doing that for your injured family. Seasonal changes are especially problematic if the man of the house is flat on his back. Storm windows? Snow tires? Anti-freeze? Do they have school-age kids that need to get school supplies? Do they have little kids who need their stockings stuffed?
When they do get to take their partially recovered person home:
  • don't stop visiting. When the injured person is out-of-it, you visited to show love and support the family. Now that the patient is halfway recovered he or she is well enough to be bored and ill enough to be house-bound. Bring the world to them. Visit in person, even if it just 20 minutes on your way home from work. My Dad is 20 months post-injury and though not house-bound, is not exactly traipsing about either. He is very blessed by a handful of friends that visit regularly; he looks forward to it all week.
  • give the #1 care-giver a break. If she or he won't tell you what they need, call their kids and find out. While the injured person was hospitalized, the care-giver had a bit of time-off, going home to rest or feign normality. Now that the patient is home, the already-weary care-giver is now a full-time nursemaid. Ramp up your support of this tired person.
  • take meals over long after everyone else has stopped.
  • pull weeds, mow. They are all at risk for getting depressed right about now. Help their environment look lovely.
  • do some stealth cleaning. Over for a visit? grab a broom, sweep a walk, deadhead a potted plant, slyly toss out the rotten food in the fridge, wipe down a counter, shine the sink. Life is overwhelmingly tiresome for them right now. Every little help is a blessing.
That is my gleaned wisdom from a been-there done-that perspective. What have I missed? What should I add?

Also, if this post was useful to you, please let me know. There is something healing about enduring hardships and getting to help others thereby.


New Family Room

New Family Room
We've converted our old home-school room into a family/guest room.  The couch pulls out into a full bed. Also in the room, which is a pale shade of yellow, is an antique oak library table and an antique low-boy dresser with a full mirror.  


Best App for Recipe Organizing and Menu or Meal Planning: Paprika

I'm a planner.  I love planning.  And I love to cook.  And I love technology.  Using technology to plan my cooking is the trifecta of joy for me.  I've tried several recipe curating apps and have finally settled on the end-all Best of Show app: Paprika.

Before I tell you all the reasons I love it, I'll tell you about the (free) runner-up: Pepperplate.

  • Free.  Free is good.
  • Kept all of my online recipes organized in one place.
  • Allowed me to insert recipes into a weekly or monthly calendar for menu planning.

  • Ads.  Goes with free.  If I'm not paying, I'm the product being delivered.
  • Said it would sync between iPhone/iPad and website (desktop) version, but the syncing was unreliable and unpredictable.  Either it wouldn't sync, or it would only sync part of the week.
  • The tagging, or categorizing interface was bulky and annoying to use.
  • Could not export or sync weekly menu to my main calendar.  I didn't like having to open a separate app to see what's for dinner.
  • #1 annoyance: Could not add to my recipe hoard from a mobile device, had to use the desktop version or manually type it it.
I used Pepperplate for about a year.  It was okay, but I not great.  Then I met Paprika. Elegant, and intuitive -- does everything I had wished for, and more.  Really really impressed with this app.


  • No ads.
  • Easy Recipe Import:  
    • It's easy to add a recipe to my hoard from within or without the app.  If I am browsing along and see a recipe I want to keep, I click on a bookmarklet in my desktop browser toolbar, or in my mobile device browser, and the recipe is saved.  Occasionally, if I am in an off-the-beaten path website I have to massage it a little, but for all the big ones I frequent (Food 52, Pioneer Woman) it's a simple one-click import.  I moved all my recipes over from Pepperplate this way.
    • I can also easily add from within the app. The outer shell of the pic below is the Paprika app.  From the inside, I can browse the web.  When I see a recipe I want -- in this case a Dutch Baby recipe, I use the toolbar on the bottom to import it.

  •  Menu planning: I can easily add recipes to different days and move them around.  Here is what we are eating this week.

    •  Plus, this weekly plan syncs to iCal.  I love love love this.  Without even opening Paprika. I can easily see what's on for tonight as well as what I need to thaw for later this week.
    • Menus: Things I always serve together can also be arranged in menus and then I can just add that combo to a day's plan.
  • Pantry: It includes an easily populated list of what is in the pantry.  I don't use it as such, I use it for what's on the produce shelf, what perishables do I need to use this week.  Super handy for that.
  • There also some nice features when you actually are using the recipe from your mobile device.
    • After you put in an ingredient, touch it and it greys out to help you keep your place.  Great feature for cooks-in-training and for the highly distracted mom training them.

    • Similarly, if you touch a chunk of directions it becomes high-lighted to help you keep your place. 
    • Where the recipe says cook at 350 for 30 minutes, touch the "30 minutes" and the timer starts.
  • Not free, but pretty cheap: $4.99 for the iPhone version and $19.99 for the Mac desktop app.
Download them.  You won't regret it, I promise.



This is a yummy, hearty, economical, nutritious, and beautiful soup.

Use the Shreddar Attachment of your wonderful Kitchen Aid Stand Mixer to shred:
KitchenAid Roto Slicer-Shredder Attachment
6 cloves peeled garlic
2 large carrots
1 cored apple
1 small onion
6 small potatoes
1 small head red cabbage
1 small head white cabbage
3 cooked beets (save the cooking water)

Simmer for hours along with:
beet water
soup bone
1 can tomato paste
extra water as needed.

Add salt to taste, serve topped with sour cream and dill.

Especially nice with the rye bread.


Character App for Writers: Mac Family Tree

I’ve tried several different methods for character sketching — keeping track of their relative ages and kinships -- and my current favorite is a Synium product, known as MacFamilyTree 7 for my laptop and as MobileFamilyTree 7 for my iPad and iPhone.

It is easy to use and generates several useful views and reports.  One of the most useful is an interactive chart that shows relationships but that also lets me click on any of these people to edit or add relatives.

The Timeline View lets me see the relative ages of the cast of characters.

The Person Report lets me keep track of individual characteristics and events as well as kinships to other characters.

Because it can be stored in the cloud, I can be typing away on my laptop and use the iPhone or iPad to keep an eye on characters.


Poetry Snacks

I have a friend who doesn't yet enjoy poetry.  I'm putting together some poetry appetizers to lure her in. Join us?

Poetry is super-concentrated language.  It's goal is to say more with fewer words.  Instead of reducing meaning when we reduce word count, we expand our possible meanings, as many clarifying words are eliminated, so a poem can have layers and layers of implications.
Robert Frost (1874–1963).  North of Boston.  1915.

1. The Pasture

I’M going out to clean the pasture spring;

I’ll only stop to rake the leaves away

(And wait to watch the water clear, I may):

I sha’n’t be gone long.—You come too.

I’m going out to fetch the little calf
That’s standing by the mother. It’s so young,

It totters when she licks it with her tongue.

I sha’n’t be gone long.—You come too.

 I like to rewrite poems, to see what I come up with.  I'm setting the font on my re-write to white so that you have the option of trying your own rewrite before reading mine.   Perhaps you will share your rewrite in the comments.  To see mine, select the area below or just hit CTRL-A for PC or Command-A for Macs.

I’m going out to do a bit of outside work
It won’t be hard work
And I’ll stop to enjoy the pleasures it presents
It won’t take long.  Come with.

I’m going out to gather in new life
Life that belongs here.  It’s so fresh
It’s wobbly.
It won’t take long.  Come with.


IKEA Modification for Compost and Chicken Scraps

In the old kitchen, we always had two ugly tubs sitting on the counter, one for chicken scraps and one for compost.  You can see one of them here with the yellow lid.  They looked bad, and the lids required two hands to open, which meant one had to set down whatever one was hoping to toss in, open the lid, pick up the scrap, and so on.  Not elegant.

Not so in the new kitchen!


See the plastic tubs mounted under the island top?  They pull out!  I mounted IKEA's Samla tubs onto IKEA's Trofast rails and achieved compost and chicken scrap happiness.

They slide out far enough that one could just scrape chopping debris into the tub, or one could pull the whole thing out and set it next to the chopping station.   


IKEA undersink modification

We have a working kitchen sink.  It's so handy!  I had forgotten how marvelous it is to have running water in the same room in which one is cooking.  And it's pretty!

In the old kitchen, the undersink area was one big clutter shelf with two doors.  To get anything out, one had to open the door all the way and stand on one's head.  We have an island across from the sink now, so I didn't want cupboard doors that had to swing open.  And I didn't really want to stand on my head to get a sponge.

So, we installed an IKEA provided partition and mounted drawer rails to it.  So those big doors under the sink are actually drawer fronts. I mounted little holders to the inside of each drawer front to hold sponges, etc.  The other one holds the dishsoap and detergent tabs.  We can access these oft' used items without having to pull anything all the way out.  And no head stands!

In the back, I put a shelf to hold less frequently used items.  The items in the back of the drawers have to be low enough to tuck under the shelf when the drawer is closed, but that is fine. The dishtub fits on the left, and the other one holds the drainer.

Everything fits.  Everything is tidy.  And the things we use all the time are handy.

And just for fun, here is the Before picture:


How to view your Scrivener WIP on your iPhone or iPad

From the Scrivener File menu, choose "Compile".
Put checkmarks next to what you want to send.  I send chapters, not character notes etc.
Select "Compile for ePub."
Click on "Compile"

In the Export screen that pops-up, make sure the Folder is set to the Dropbox folder that your phone is linked to.
Click on Export.

On your phone, open your Dropbox app.
Click on the file in the dropbox.
When you get the "Couldn't Load File" message, click on the "Send to" icon in the lower left corner.
In the pop-up, choose "Open In . . ."
In the next screen, choose "Open in iBooks"


Writing Toys and Tools for the iOS environment

When I can't get my story to move forward (usually because I am writing a chapter from the wrong POV -- point of view -- and I haven't yet noticed that or because there are other people in the house making noise), I work on setting up my technology for the most efficient use of the wee writing windows I do have.

I do all the actual writing in Scrivener on my big home computer.  My arthritic fingers insist on its ergonomically correct keyboard and there is no way around this.  But I can't and really don't want to run to my desk whenever I get a thought.

No problem!

I just use the voice memo function on my phone to capture stray brilliant inspirations (rare) and/or crippling plot errors I just now realized (more common than I wish).  Then when I do get to the computer I listen to the memos and add to my running Manuscript ToDo list.

Another big happy discovery was Scriviner's ability to publish to iBooks.  I really dislike printing to paper as it is wasteful and cumbersome, but there are times that I really just want to read the story, or just that delicious chapter that fell from my fingertips last night, and I want to read somewhere other than my desk.

No problem!

I figured out how to send my work-in-progress to iBooks which lets it look just like a real book that I can read on my phone or my iPad.   As I read, if I find places to edit, I can make a note right in the book and then at the end of my session, I can email my notes, sorted in order of chapter, back to myself.  This gives me an ordered list of edits to make when I am next at my big computer.

Happy happy.


Mac Apps for Writers

Buy Scrivener 2 for Mac OS X (Education Licence)
Scrivener: My #1 just can't live without writing app is Scrivener.  It is amazing. I can't even begin to to it justice  -- in part because my head is in my story and in part because why bother? The Scrivener website will tell you all you need to know. I apologize that the link here takes you straight to check out. Just click on products and start toodling about.

Or check it out on the iTunes store: Scrivener. Or just take my word for it. Scrivener is the bomb.

Next up on the cool things list is Aeon Timeline - Scribble Code . This timeline generator helps me keep my storylines straight and keeps me from muddling my generations.  Best of all, it syncs with Scrivener!  You can get a trial copy at Scribble and here are a few discount codes just for fun: CAMPWRITER or SUMMERFEST

The last on my hit parade tonight (because I really should be writing: 700 words to go) is Snowflake Pro and if you leave a comment, I'll tell you how to get it for half-off.

It's a complete plot and plan application and I really should have started with this one 15 years ago when I started my story.  I'll be using it tonight to try to crumple up some of my flatter characters.


Five Day Writing Challenge

2,000 words a day for five days.  Can I do it?


Internet Monitoring aka spying on your kids

So, without going into the details, it has become obvious that we need more than the usual Computer In A Public Room and Mom Has All the Passwords for the computers our kids use. We have tried a lot. The Macs come with Parental Controls settings, with two problematic areas:
  1. the application restriction options works backwards. I want to be able to say "Let them use everything but these three." Instead, it is set up so that I have to say "Only let them use the ones I check." So any background app that is essential to the function of something we want triggers a "You don't have access. Allow access?" screen. This would be great if the option to Always Allow Access actually did anything, but it does not. So the process of getting called over to enter the Parental Control password is repeated ad nauseam
  2. The web-filtering was squiffy at best.
So, the next thing we tried was Net Nanny. She looked so good on the surface, but once installed we learned that she didn't always show up to work! Sometimes she would launch and filter, sometimes not. We fired her and moved on. Even if she had worked well, she wouldn't be enough.

We need more than website-filtering, we need to be able to track all the computer activity. Why, you may wonder. Well imagine that your child's homeschool work includes some software that will allow the user to check the answers after each attempt. And the software will allow for adding and deleting users at will. Yup. Your child could create a bogus account. Check all the answers. Get a screenshot of the answers. Delete the account. Copy answers from screenshot to the work on his or her own account. Grrrr.

Enter SniperSpy. Oh SniperSpy looked powerful and mighty and effective. Live Chat support 24/7! All sorts of wonderful monitoring tools -- live screen viewing. Periodic screenshots. Just what we needed. I could buy one license and install it for each user, or so I was told. The installation was glitchy, but no matter, live 24/7 chat suppport to the rescue. Not!

The automatia is good, I'll hand them that, even including typos and spellings errors for that authentic look. But really? Three different chat support people happen to type the same identical line with the same capitalization error and slightly unusual vocabulary word? "Please wait while i go fetch some data." And as soon my questions got complicated the responses got more and more bizarre. Plus the lag between questionand answer was 5-10 minutes each time. Really not useful at all. I have filed a request for a refund with PayPal (ALWAYS buy software downloads with PayPal so you have some hope of a refund if things go bad).

Currently I am working with SpyTech Realtime Spy. The installation was nearly trouble-free. At one point I got stuck and opened a trouble ticket. I got an email back right away from the CEO! Seriously. I looked him up and it was really him. The owner and CEO is working the tech support desk. I love that! And it didn't hurt that his response cleared up my problem.

Check out the Demo! It will
  • show live screens.  What the child is doing in one room, the mother can see in another room.
  • show the applications used and the time they were used.
  • capture screenshots at intervals I set.
  • show websites visited.
  • show windows opened. Helpful if one has a child with a quick mouse-finger.  History homework window was open at the same time as YouTube window was opened.  Interesting.
And if you end up buying, be a sweetie and click through here first.  I get a wee commission if you do.  But that is not why I am telling you about it.  NetNanny and SniperSpy have affiliate programs as well, but I'm not providing links to their products because I was disappointed in them.  So far, RealTime Spy is doing what I want it to do and I want to share it with you.

internet monitoring, spy on computer, net nanny, computer watch, 


Easter Week

Easter Week
by Charles Kingsley (1819 – 1875)

See the land, her Easter keeping,
Rises as her Maker rose.
Seeds, so long in darkness sleeping,
Burst at last from winter snows.
Earth with heaven above rejoices;
Fields and gardens hail the spring;
Shaughs and woodlands ring with voices,
While the wild birds build and sing.
You, to whom your Maker granted
Powers to those sweet birds unknown,
Use the craft by God implanted;
Use the reason not your own.
Here, while heaven and earth rejoices,
Each his Easter tribute bring-
Work of fingers, chant of voices,
Like the birds who build and sing.


Easter Morning

Easter Morning
Edmund Spenser 1552?-1599

Most glorious Lord of life, that on this day
Didst make thy triumph over death and sin,
And, having harrowed hell, didst bring away
Captivity thence captive, us to win;
This joyous day, dear Lord, with joy begin,
And grant that we, for whom thou didst die,
Being with thy dear blood clean washed from sin,
May live forever in felicity:
And that thy love we weighing worthily,
May likewise love thee for the same again:
And for thy sake, that all like dear didst buy,
With love may one another entertain.
So let us love, dear love, like as we ought;
Love is the lesson which the Lord us taught.


Good Friday

Good Friday in My Heart!

Good Friday in my heart!

GOOD FRIDAY in my heart! Fear and affright!
My thoughts are the Disciples when they fled,
My words the words that priest and soldier said,
My deed the spear to desecrate the dead.
And day, Thy death therein, is changed to night.

Then Easter in my heart sends up the sun.
My thoughts are Mary, when she turned to see.
My words are Peter, answering, ‘Lov’st thou Me?’
My deeds are all Thine own drawn close to Thee,
And night and day, since Thou dost rise, are one.

~ Mary Elizabeth Coleridge


Akurum Adel IKEA Kitchen Tweaks

So, we have ordered a full set of IKEA's Akurum frames with Adel fronts.  In addition, we are adding the following tweaks:

Extra shelves.  For almost every cabinet I ordered one extra shelf so that I can fit more in and so that I have a back-up shelf for the future.

Costco's Slide-a-Shelf pull-outs for the baking pantry and for under the sink.  Why not just use IKEA's Rationell pull-out? Because I want real wood for these oft used and/or dampish locations.

TIP: If you use the Integral hinge dampers your hinges will use up 3 inches of your width (1.5 each side), so keep this in mind if you are ordering inserts for your cabinets.

From Lowe's I ordered Rev-a-Shelf's false front tip-out adaptor hinges and trays
I will use these to turn the false panels of my cooktop base cabinet into wooden spoon trays.

I also ordered Rev-a-Shelf 's pegboard system for the plate drawers.  I think it is much prettier and more durable looking than the IKEA offering.

And last, I ordered Rev-a-Shelf's Bread Drawer kit to keep all our yummy loaves fresh.
And because I used eBates, I got 2-5% back on all of this!


The Floor Is In!

We have a ceiling and a floor now.  Very exciting.  Alas, we lost the sink in the process: collateral damage I suppose.  We disconnected it to put in the floor and when it was time to put it back all the valves leaked.  They were at least 20 years old, so it's not terribly surprising, but distressing nonetheless.  All that is left in the kitchen now is the fridge, a wee bit of doorless wall shelving, the bit of countertop in the bay window, a card table, and the frame of one cabinet which I set up in order to visualize and measure the baking pantry arrangements.  Fortunately we have a laundry room sink, so we are not quite to the Dishes in Bathtub stage.

The floor is Harmonics Brazilian Cherry laminate click flooring which we bought at Costco ten years ago or so.  This project has been in the works for a long time.

We are very lucky that the floor coloring is flattering to Nutmeg.  It would be a pity to have to take it out and start over.

In spite of all this I am still cooking!  Where there is a will (and a hungry husband and teenager and tweenager) there is a way.  Tonight we are having Chickeny Bacony Spicy Cheesy Rice which I made this morning in the electric skillet and will set to heat up in the crock-pot when we leave for lacrosse practice (4 days a week!).