When I was cooking at The Oaks Retirement Center (my last job — that’s literally where I was when I first passed out from this stupid tumor) I often had residents who had very little appetite. I took it as a personal challenge to find things they would eat, because if I got them to eat something, we could usually get them eating more and more, slowly but surely.
I quizzed their visitors. What would she eat at a movie? On a car trip? At a diner? Her favorite dessert? A treat? Her mother’s best dish? On her birthday?
No matter what it was, I would try to make something from that list and just present it without much notice. No Big Deal that root beer floats are for dessert today!
I was trying to distract myself from this stupid headache and thought, wow, I should ask people who have eaten with me what I like to eat. Then I remembered I had an album on Flickr called Foodporn. But that’s all the food I’ve made, not necessarily food I made because I wanted it and like it. Sort of? I was looking through it lately, and sadly, not much appeals.
One thing did, though, my Hippie Oatmeal. So we are going to start with that.
I also started a list with everyone of things that I think of that sound appealing. I can only do it in short bits before everything sounds horrible, so I add one thing and exit the app. No real reading it as a list for me yet. And no judging what I put on the list! I really do like kombucha better than any other liquid.
I can’t believe I’ve turned into that lady! But maybe that’s the reason I was in Branson for a while, to learn. Treating myself like I’d treat someone else. What a rad concept.
Do your friends and family a favor and create that list for yourself. It might come in handy some day.
It’s going to be a challenge for me to make things that only I will like or be able to eat, not make things that they will like. I really love hippie oatmeal, or did. I’m sort of looking forward to making it this evening. Sort of.
I can’t wait to introduce it to the birdies! Doc tells me “step up” whenever I walk by, trying to boss me about. He’s so much fun. He thinks we are going to make beautiful babies together. His latest trick is to sound like the goat is in front to get the cavalry out the door. He stumbled getting onto my arm yesterday, and told me “oops, careful, there, there, it’s okay”.
4 thoughts on “Heal thyself”
I love Doc! It is very unusual that a gray is so friendly with so many. They’re usually a on person bird. We sounds very wise. Hope the hippie oatmeal appeals. Xoxo Janet
Hi, I was in a nursing home setting for 2werks after my recent spine surgery so I know what you are talking about. We did not have snyone on chatge in the kitchen who cooks as well as you do. I found I just could not eat half or moore of what they served me, and that is with choices available.Stanford Hospital has instituted a new food regime. They mo longer serve meals, on a schedule or otherwise. What they have instead. Is a menu with all kinds of things on it and the patients can order amythingbtheyvwant between 5 am to 9 pm. You can order just lone thing or several and in about 20 minutes or so a nicely uniformed steward would bring wtever I ordered and plce it appropriately on the tray or table beside me. The ordering was done by ohone and all I had to do was punch in a brief number, tell them who I am and they already knew which room I was in. Et Voilá i told them what Ivwanted snd it would soon appear. Far less food waste I imagine, a whole differemnt stsffing pattern, and the patients get exsctly what they want, when they want it and no need to try to eat the usual institutional food be ause it no longer exists!
What do you think of that idea, Lisa? Exactly what you want when you want it.
My favorite ostmral is oatmeal that has a rather kiquid consistency, with some of the flattened grain consistency still there. Served hot, salted and with a good sized dillop of butter on top and cream served on the side for me to add as the spirit moves me.
Other inconventional grain type dish that I love is Congee, a rice soup that is prepared by simmering rice in a vat of chicken broth with the proportions of broth to rice is about 6to one, or even more liquid than that as the soup cooks down. After the rice and broth oar pit on the stove to heat , add the followong; a goodly amount of gratef or finely diced fresh ginger, peeled of course, minced or pressed garlic, salt to taste and bits of raw ground pork. Byy bits, I mean amounts that would fot into a ¼ teason measuring spoon. The pork is there for flavor, protein, and the interest it adds to texture. The soup if kept on a really low stove setting, can basically cook all night. If it seems too thick at any point, just add more liquid, water usually, stir, heat up until it is steaming hot , stir, ladel into bowl or large mug, garnish and eat. Garnishes can include a few drops of sesame oul, and some finely chopped green o ions(including some green and white parts) or finely chopped chives. I think this may well be the Chinese version of cures what sils you chicken soup from the Jewish tradition.
So yes, by all means figure out what it is you want to eat these days and make sure there is plenty of it available to you. ??
I am so touched by how you treated the people who lived at the retirement community. My parents were in independent living for a while, and there was no individualized attention like what you gave from the kitchen. That was an incredible give you gave, which I’m sure made you feel good as well, and I’m glad you are getting the same gifts from people now.
Lisa, having medical problems hasn’t slowed down your smart mind and THAT IS A GREAT to read about your ideas and things…
I ( along with many other friends ) look forward to reading for A LONG, long time more and more of them !!!!