TP Inspiration, and A Very Short Update

March 25, 2011

Dear Family,

We order cases of “Seventh Generation” toilet paper, partly because it's functional and recycled, partly out of habit (Jeff and I have been buying this brand for over a decade), and and partly because it's nice to only run out of toilet paper every few months. Also, because the wrapper features this great quote:

“In our every deliberation, we must
consider the impact of our decisions
on the next seven generations.”

--From the great law of the Iroquois Confederacy

It came to me recently that my rallying cry may become: “Decision-making: it's not just for toilet paper any more!”



Trying to identify the source off some itching: “I can't see my back!”

Playing the game of trying-not-to-giggle with Jeff and Jem: “I laughed _inside,_ because I had to!”

Upon finding out that Grandpa Terry might not be able to get to our house, due to snow: “He HAS to come! Even if he can't come visit, I want him to come.” (Luckily, the snow held off and Grandpa's visit was enjoyed by all.)



“Mama! It's very pretty out.”

At the theatre two weeks ago, waiting and waiting: “WHEN will the costumes come?”

Commenting on my new, really-nice-according-to-me cashmere sweater: “I don't want to you to wear it, 'cause it's too hairy!! ...Will you go change yourself?”

Knowing that sometimes I give him kefir when he asks for yogurt, Jem realized that he had to be specific: “Mama, can I have some yogurt? ...I want the _actual_ kind.”

After seeing three real Great Blue Herons during a recent visit to the Lab of Ornithology, Jem set out to make some out of origami paper. “Did you see _my_ Great Blue Herons?” he asked me. “...all the stickin'-out parts are wings.”

Do you remember that feeling, when you were little, of how it felt to wear clothes that you knew for a fact were Really Excellent? That is how Jem feels about his new-to-him, sporty blue-and-red pants. “I'm the best kid!” he told Jeff. “Because I'm wearing the Best Pants.”


I am trying to think of interesting things to report this week...but the reality is that we are doing a lot of Hunkering Down, and we're focused on Healing most of all (i.e. eating lots of good food). I am going to try a bunch of new recipes this week, and will report back. Recently, the boys and I have been enjoying maitake and shittake mushrooms in this soup (which has infinite variations): . We had basil-butter (sort of like pesto, with butter instead of nuts) on top of our veggies tonight, and it was delicious! Also, I made corned beef as per this recipe, and it was _super_-tasty but probably I should have changed the water halfway through the final cooking, to desalt it a bit: . (I let ours cure in the fridge for 11 days.)

And Ben is finally able to handle dairy kefir and yogurt!! and . This probably doesn't sound like a big deal, but it is to me, considering that when we gave him milk for the first time in his life (August 2009), he broke out with eczema over his entire body followed by an explosion of his Lip Rash that continued for the next nine months and still flares as recently as last month.

Anyway: now he drinks a couple of cups of well-fermented dairy each day (no eczema!), and although every probiotic food that he eats brings on a new spate of symptom regression, I am positive that each of these new foods is also bringing him closer to health and pushing him further along on this crazy healing journey... He _sat on Grandpa's lap_ last week, voluntarily!!!


Stay tuned for my next Articles Update, which will also contain a brief diatribe from me on the importance of not moralizing on the topic of mental illness...and why we should all be pretty afraid of the catastrophic epidemic of mental illness today...and why it is so important to accept this concept: that healing can happen, even near-complete healing, even while we know less than 1% of exactly all the things that are happening within ill bodies and brains...


Hey, as of yesterday, it's been...FOURTEEN YEARS since I started off on my crazy bike ride across the country!!! This is a little insane. I remember thinking to myself, way back then: “Someday I'll be TWICE AS OLD AS I AM NOW!” And now I'm getting closer and closer to when this will be true (only three more years)...

Okay, short this week. :)


P.S. We're all very happy to hear that Loren landed safely and is back from his Guatemalan adventures, and also: Jake found an apartment in Boston! Right near where we used to live, no less...