I used to get a lot of nosebleeds as a kid. Radiator heat, along with a woodburning stove in the house I grew up in, meant dry, dry, dry air. A cast iron kettle of water on top of the woodburning stove aside, any humidifier would have to struggle to keep up in our house and so I knew all the tricks to stopping a noosebleed. I even have a big book of Ripley’s Believe It or Not illustrations with a huge blood splatter on page 132 due to an unfortunate nosebleed during some after bedtime reading with my little brother. I should scan that page to show you. Anyway, nosebleeds weren’t that big a deal. A bit of rolled up tissue, a pinch to the bridge of your nose and lean forward, or lean back, a wad of bread stuffed between your upper lip and front gums – I knew everything to try. I had it under control.
Liam can’t have a nosebleed. Sure his sinuses and air passages can dry out just like anybody else’s, but breathing through his neck means the blood has nowhere else to go. This morning Liam scared me more than he has since he got home. His trach tube seemed filled with blood and panic was about to set in. Karin grabbed her phone and I thought she was calling 911 because its what I was about to do but she was calling our pulmonologist’s nurse practitioner who has helped us out of all our jams. Its good thing that Mom’s cooler head prevailed because it seems that these type of events are very common in the wintertime for trachs. Another one of those things that you don’t learn about until it happens. Now I know. I won’t make that mistake again. We suctioned him a few times and adjusted his heater and humidifier to compensate for the dryness in the air due to our radiator heat. Liam is none the worse for wear. The whole event was much more traumatic on me than it was on him and when it was all over he simply rolled back onto his side and went back to sleep. Ho-Hum.
I am proud to say that after all that excitement and after shovelling the waist-high snow that drifted onto my driveway, I created the greatest Blizzard meal ever. Sure the ingredients were all made by my Mother-In-Law and so I can’t take all the credit. And yes, Karin gave me a few of the ideas that really helped the execution but I was the one in the kitchen so its my dish. The Thanksgiving Casserole. The Turkey Shepherd’s Pie. The Blizzard Bake. Yeah, I like that last one.
The Blizzard Bake.
Grease casserole dish with a thin layer of butter and press a layer of leftover stuffing to create the crust. a few tablespoons of reheated Turkey gravy and a thick layer of shredded turkey meat. A few more tablespoons of gravy and layer on some frozen peas. Salt and pepper before topping the whole thing with leftover mashed potatoes. A few tablespoons of melted butter over it all to form a nice crusty top. 400 degree oven for an hour. Delicious.
It may not present as the most beautiful dish in my repertoire but it certainly is the most filling and satisfying on a cold blustery day after spending a few hours shovelling snow.
I feel that I should mention that Karin hates it when I take pictures of our food. She thinks I’m being weird when I won’t let her eat until I take a few pictures of the plate. She’s the weird one – here’s a picture of her dinner in case you were wondering.
As I mentioned in yesterday’s post Karin and I have truly been anticipating a day like this for years and we were not disappointed. A full day of quiet togetherness as the snow continued to fall outside. Pajamas stayed on all day and each and every one of us got to take a nap. The coffee was delicious and the Patriots beat The Bills. What’s better than that?