Sunday, June 30, 2013

Sunday Stroke Survival ~ Appreciating the New Me and a Recipe

The two weeks has been a flurry of activity at the Murphey Saga household. No not writing but supervising.

The renovations that were supposed to be completed by February were done now with the help of family. Mainly the girls on the end of the chorus line pictured on the left and their spouses.

For Father's Day, the family got together and bought a walk-in tub for us. It meant totally gutting and extending the master bathroom to do it. Being my house is built on a slab with a septic tank, this was a major undertaking involving a jack hammer. Everything had to be switched around for access. But I now have both a walk-in tub and roll in shower! This was one of my back seat issues.

Another issue was wider, uniform doors. All my doorways are now 36 inches wide insteadof 27, 30, and 36  inches wide. Another back seat issue solved. God forbid I ever have another stroke where I'm wheelchair bound, but I'm ready. Concrete was poured to ramp the small steps up and downs to get inside my home and into my old office now converted into a family room. Fresh paint through out the inside of the home which hasn't been done in ten years.

That bring me back to the title of this blog,  "Appreciating the New Me." In the old days I would have been in the midst of all this with boots and a shovel or paint brush in hand. This time I was the supervisor. I drew up the plans of how/where I wanted everything and sat back for the most part and watched. Yes, part of me wanted to jump in and help, and I did in certain circumstances, but I didn't HAVE to do it all. This was a HUGE change for me.

As a result, I was just as tired supervising if I had done the work myself, but without the body aches and pains. I still had creative input in how things were done without actually getting my hands dirty.

I can sit back and let others do the work and realized I was okay with it. I can let them have creative input within reason and not micro manage a project to death. My husband is the micro manager but his health is complicating those efforts now. He's more pliable and willing to go with the flow unlike a decade ago. Both of us are willing to accept help now. That's another huge change. We are realizing our own limitations. While it still gnaws at us, it's a relief not to have to go it alone also.

Well not totally dirt free, I still had the garden to contend with. My three sisters methods of planting works in the constraints of small raised bed gardening. I harvested 43 ears of corn off of 40 stalks. A far cry from the eighty ears I was getting from my full garden, but from a basic container garden not too bad. It has been shucked and I taught my grandchildren how to make corn husk dolls. The corn is drying out for chicken treats. My younger grandkids will have fun cracking it later.

The garden yield so far besides the corn mentioned above has been...

  • 25 pounds of tomatoes
  • 15 pounds of zuchinni
  • 15 pounds of yellow squash
  • 35 pounds of green beans
  • 15 pounds of black eyed peas, shelled
  • 10 pounds onions, garlic, ginger root, and horseradish
  • 5 lbs salad greens, staggered plantings every two weeks
  • 1/2 pound of squash blossoms to stuff, batter and fry as wanted
And still producing more.

Stuffed Squash Blossoms Recipe

A food processor makes the stuffing easier than my meat grinder.
1/2 pound ground chicken, cooked
1/2 large onion, coarse chop
1/2 bell pepper, coarse chop
1/2 cup celery, coarse chop
1/2 tbs chives, minced
1 clove of garlic, sliced
1 cup low fat ricotta cheese
1 cup Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup fresh oregano, basil, thyme
1 tbs butter, not margarine
12 squash blossoms
1/2 cup Egg substitute
1/2 c self-rising flour
1/2 c Sparkling water, very cold
Salt and pepper to taste

In a skillet sweat onions, celery, garlic, and bell pepper until almost translucent. Toss in chicken, herbs, salt and pepper. Cook until warmed through. Place in a bowl and chill for 20 minutes.

After 20 minutes place meat mixture and cheeses in food processor and pulse until it forms a loose ball and well combined. Place in a pastry bag. Heat oil for frying to 350 degrees.

In a bowl mix flour, egg, and water until combined. This mixture will be watery and thin.

Remove the stamens from the blossoms. They tend to give the dish a bitter taste. Fill with meat mixture leaving enough space to be able to fold the outer edges of the flower covering the meat. I can't give an exact amount because every blossom is different.

Dip the blossoms into the flour mixture and fry until golden brown. Eat immediately.

I'll serve these with fresh sliced tomatoes. 2 blossoms per serving. Yummy!


  1. Just reading about all the work made me tired. What a Herculean effort by everyone. I will do anything that keeps me out of a nursing home.

  2. Good for you! You've earned the ability to sit back and not do everything for yourself, Jo. I'm still in the hands-on phase, but my contributions to construction have changed as I've aged. My hubby, on the other hand, is still going strong...and has the aches to prove it.

    Enjoy the new bath!

  3. Zan Marie, It just about kills me to sit back and watch. I want to jump in and help.

    Rebecca, I'm not ready for the old folks home yet and may never be. For them, it' all in a day's work so long as I supply the pizza and beer. Deconstruction is much easier than construction. Went through that earlier last year by adding a store room onto my house.

  4. I'm glad your renovations are complete. Have you enjoyed a soak in your new tub yet?

  5. Lara, I had the joy of christening the new tub last Sunday! I spent three hours in the thing. I came out water logged but content.


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