Week in Pictures

souffle

I made and we collectively devoured this lovely hot chocolate souffle. One thing I learned after my cheese one I made a couple weeks ago turned out more like melty scrambled eggs on the inside is that duck eggs just are NOT good for souffle-making. The egg whites don’t stiffen up the same like chicken eggs do and they just don’t react the same in the oven. Having a chocolate craving and wanting to see Souffle Victory after the duck egg flop version, I cheated on my ducks and bought 6 chicken eggs at the store and made this beauty. I know, it’s not supposed to crack so perhaps I beat the whites a bit too long (I can never determine the point of “glossiness” in recipies…), but who the fuck cares, it tasted like chocolate clouds and with blueberries from this summer’s freezing we did…? Hell yeah. PS – here’s good reading about the science of souffle making.

strangerthings

And yes, within 3 days of the season two premiere, we devoured all episodes of Stranger Things on Netflix. Good, scary, and a bit camp-y (thanks to Goonies’ icon Sean Astin as Bob this season). While it was entertaining, it wasn’t as good as the first season (is it ever on these types of shows?), and I think they should end it at Season 2 on a high point, as it has potential to get super lame if they go any further. I lost interest in Orange is the New Black and House of Cards after the last season so not much left now in Netflix land for moi, beyond Chelsea every Friday. Maybe it’s time to save that ten bucks a month…?

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Why can I never live anywhere besides Oregon? One big reason is the autumn, plain and simple. We took a walk around Laurelhurst Park the other day just to enjoy the falling leaves and perfect weather (I’m happiest when it’s in the 60’s, I gotta say) so I had to snap this shot of my sweetheart tossing up a big bunch of leaves…

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All I can think of when I look at this photo is someone yelling “Where were you on the night of June 25th?” Poor salami. Yes, my husband is making our first Genoa salami and by early 2018 it should be ready to try out. We did a LOT of homework to figure out a way to make it work without a traditional salami-making environment and found some good hacks. For the first 24 hours where it just ferments it needs 85ish degree heat and so for that (pictured) he got out our duck incubator light which puts the temp right in that range (clever husband!!) and after that it needs around 60 degrees and hey, that’s why this basement closet is primo territory. For the humidity, a bucket of salt water in the closet and a wet rag hanging as well to bring up the mugginess in the area, and then a small fan for circulation (yay for a $7 desk fan score @ Goodwill!). So for the next 6ish weeks, we cross our fingers…

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On my side of things, today I made this gorgeous brioche which by dinnertime will most likely be inhaled. Yes, the whole loaf. The process is very similar to making regular bread except there is milk in the dough and part of the rising time is done in the fridge. Oh yeah, and almost an entire stick of butter kneaded in, heh. It’s days like this that I can’t say I regret ending those years of GF/DF living. Butter. Pastry flour, A beaten egg brushed on top before baking. A loaf that literally pulls apart. Ahhh….

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A sweet little surprise from my honey…


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Emotionally, still all over the fucking map PTSD-wise and grateful for the therapist who has stuck by us. Some might assume that once you’ve made the decision to end fertility treatments that you have closure, which couldn’t be further from the truth. I started reading another article – this one a research-based piece – surrounding the topic of PTSD and infertility and Every.Single.Example was a woman who ended up with a kid. Two of them were from women who already had kids! I am never going to believe that the level of PTSD is the same in women who have a happy little baby at home compared to those of us who leave with nothing. Not one fucking example of the silent masses of us who are dying inside after going through our bank accounts and bodies and sanity, not one fucking example of what women like myself go through after we’ve made the gut-wrenching decision to stop the race that clearly had no finish line. My husband and I struggle individually, and at times in our relationship, as we try to figure out who we are after these traumatic years, and the words of Miriam Zoll who, like us, finally walked away (later adopting a baby), ring loudly in my head…

“Once inside the surreal world of reproductive medicine, there is no obvious off-ramp; you keep at it as long as your bank account, health insurance or sanity holds out…Even among the patient-led infertility community, the prevailing belief is that those who walk away from treatments without a baby are simply not strong enough to run the gauntlet of artificial conception. Those who quit are, in a word, weak…Ending our treatments was one of the bravest decisions we ever made, and we did it to preserve what little remained of our shattered selves, our strained relationships and our depleted bank accounts…We rarely hear from the other side, former patients who, in refusing to give up, endured addictive, debilitating and traumatizing cycles. Those contemplating treatments have a right to know about the health risks, ethical concerns, broken marriages and, for many, deep depression often associated with failed treatments.” ~ from Selling the Fantasy of Fertility (New York Times, 2013).

  One thought on “Week in Pictures

  1. November 4, 2017 at 5:04 pm

    That souffle sounds perfect!

    Like

  2. November 4, 2017 at 8:22 pm

    The PTSD research sounds interesting anf frustrating. Is there really any point comparing PTSD levels though? Surely it is all individual and heavily based in tbat persons experience and individual temperament and previous life experiences. Is the mother who has PTSD after a traumatic delivery ‘less’ on the level because she has a living baby? Is my experience of depression ‘less’ than someone elses because I have what others would call an ‘easy’ life? I get very uneasy when people speak of different levels outside of clinical assessments. It leads to people thinking they should just ‘suck it up’ because people ‘have it worse than they do’. 🤔 I shall ruminate on the subject in my brain and this is certainly a perspective I shall think about.

    Like

    • November 4, 2017 at 8:41 pm

      The PTSD is about Infertility and the inability to have a child. Those who have been successful at having a child have absolutely crossed over to the other side of the fence and no matter how much PTSD they have it is not, and never will be, the same type of level of trauma as someone who never got their dream. It’s not invalidating pain, it’s showing respect for the fact that those of us who have never been able to have a baby are dealing with a level of trauma those with babies at home will never understand, and they cannot all be lumped together. It would be like me saying I understand postpartum depression which is literally impossible.

      Like

      • November 4, 2017 at 9:05 pm

        Yes, I see your point. Definitely something to think about. I guess I can see that yes, it should be categorised differently. Its just i have seen this type of argument be used to invalidate an individuals pain and prevent them from seeking treatment, on the other hand, respect is very important for people who have differing outcomes. Your blog provides me food and food for thought.

        Like

  3. November 6, 2017 at 4:23 am

    That souffle looks delicious!

    Liked by 1 person

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