On Mold, Health & Charity

So I went to taste my new jars of sauerkraut last Wednesday and…they smelled like mold. Dammit. I knew it was a risk, because I was using cabbage that had been in the fridge for a few weeks, but I had hoped I’d gotten to it soon enough. Not so, apparently. I tossed those jars out, and bought a couple more heads of cabbage, and will try again one night this week.

No, I’m not giving up. Homemade sauerkraut is good stuff, and good for you – it’s got a lot of great vitamins & probiotics. I also bought carrots and fresh garlic – the very first batch I made included both, and was really fabulous (though the hubby wasn’t fond of the garlic). I plan to start two jars again – one with carrots/garlic, and one just plain. Fingers crossed…

Ironically enough, as I sit here typing late Sunday night, I’m not sipping my normal cup of green tea to go with my standard late-night yogurt/granola/maple syrup snack. No, tonight I have a glass of grape soda at my side, and I’m savoring every sip. Made with cane sugar, of course – because I’d like to breathe when I go to sleep tonight, and corn syrup does really bad things to my sinuses anymore. I used to be able to handle it just fine, but the healthier my diet’s become, the more I pay for the decision to have a standard glass of pop while I’m out and about (I buy Mexican Coke for that occasional at-home craving…made with cane sugar, so no allergy issues).

Truth be told, I really don’t even crave soda much anymore. I’ve been substituting with tea and water and the occasional pineapple juice for so long that one glass of pop will kill the craving for weeks before I want another “hit”. Which is pretty good considering I started drinking pop several times a day before I even hit high school, and kept that habit up until a good year or so after I graduated college.

Thing is, I’m highly motivated to avoid change and inconvenience – both for myself and to avoid creating it for other people. So the cancer avoidance thing is big with me. Obviously.

Last weekend I started making something called “Golden Paste” (seriously – they couldn’t just call it “Turmeric Paste”?) for the dogs. Murphy has a big open wound under the legging he wears most of the time, and I wanted to see if giving him turmeric with his meals would help that to heal faster. Turmeric needs oil and black pepper to be bioavailable, so golden paste is basically just turmeric cooked to a paste in water, and then blended with oil (I use coconut, because – healthy!) and black pepper. I started giving it to the dogs morning and night, and they both seem to be doing really well on it. Murphy’s wound seems to be healing faster – though I’ve tried several other things that I think might be helping to speed that along. I even put turmeric paste right on the wound for a night. It looked much better after that – and a honey/turmeric paste treatment this weekend seemed to hurry the healing up a bit as well.

In any case, turmeric is supposed to be good for a variety of healthy things for humans as well, and one common way to use golden paste for humans is to make “golden milk” (which sounds even worse, I know – seriously, what is *wrong* with just saying “turmeric”?!). Basically, a little golden paste mixed with warm milk and honey. I find it very tasty, and have been drinking just a small cup before bed. I have no idea if it’s doing anything good or not, but I enjoy that little treat while I’m reading before bed, and if it is doing anything good for my insides, all the better.

And that just got me thinking about which mugs I use, which makes me think about my teacups, and how I’m planning to do a post on the meaning of cups soon. Memo to self…

I did manage to get the taxes done this weekend too, and when Turbo Tax asked me about charitable contributions, it made me stop and think for a good long minute. I used to be good about donating here and there as money allowed, but I’ve been pretty tight with things lately. Maybe it’s time to loosen the purse strings a bit, and reinstate that zoo membership, and buy an art museum membership, and set up that ongoing contribution to our local PBS station. I’ll be paying off our second mortgage in another couple of months, so no reason not to put a little cash back into the community, eh?

In that same vein, I’m going to set up some donation links on the Friday Gone to the Dogs posts. People who like the posts and feel like doing so can toss a tip to the charity of either Mica or Murphy’s choice – the shelters that helped them both out when they needed a safe place to stay. Maybe we can give back a little that way too.

Now it’s time to go make my turmeric milk, crawl into bed, and continue reading The Skin Collector by Jeffery Deaver. Interesting stuff. Especially for those of us who are tattooed…