What A Flight ! - Life ... It's Why We Cook. Blog at Allrecipes.com - 293224

Life ... It's Why We Cook.

What A Flight ! 
Dec. 28, 2012 12:30 pm 
Updated: Jan. 9, 2013 7:28 pm
As we watched Santa approaching from Europe, our hearts were warmed by the Royal Canadian Air Force who generously provided escort service to our Jolly Saint. It was noted that the RCAF jets had afterburners blazing in their effort to keep up with him. I'm convinced that, if Santa hadn't had to stop to deliver gifts, their effort would have been in vain. The RCAF handed off the Christmas Gentleman to the USAF with a snappy salute to the dear man in red and returned to their bases.

The USAF had the same issues with keeping up with Santa and, actually, did lose him over the Pacific as he headed for Hawaii and other Pacific islands. (No stops.)
This is the first time I have been able to witness a part of Santas flight and I am amazed at his swift efficiency in completing his world wide task of joy. Many thanks to the RCAF and to the USAF for assuring Santa a safe journey and to NORAD for providing the Santa Tracker.

Christmas Eve was our family day, this year. Our daughter and her family were to go to her husbands family on Christmas day to celebrate so she, our son and we celebrated a day early to accomodate that arrangement. Christmas Day, Mrs. Mike and I exchanged our gifts and spent the afternoon with our very good friends who happen to be the parents of our super daughter in law. The morning passed in quiet solitude which was exchanged for the antics of our granddaughter and her doggie in the afternoon.

Unlike my fruitcake blog, where only half of the commenters liked fruitcake, my fruitcake was very well received by my family. There was only one Cat Camper out of the thirteen attendees. The fruitcake was nearly wiped out. I think I will make another one next week as a study of new ingredients. Of course, that could be just me thinking.

For 2013, I'm reconsidering my cancer awareness campaign. I think I will also focus on post- cancer survivorship. I cannot forget just how important that phase of cancer treatment was for me and it certainly needs far more attention. I'm not sure just where I will fit into that area but I'll begin my search next week to find my niche. I will still participate in the Relays for Life and preach cancer awareness to everybody whether they are listening or not.

To close out 2012, I will remind both genders to do their self checks for lumps or bumps in all soft areas of your bodies, or rashes or lesions that should have healed, or pain or sickness or exhaustion or fever that lasts more than a few days. If you experience any of these, make an appointment with your primary care physician to discover the cause. If necessary, get a second opinion immediately. Never wait.

In closing out 2012, my wish for everybody is for a healthy and safe 2013.
Dec. 28, 2012 12:41 pm
Wonderful reminders..... Same you and yours Mike!
Dec. 28, 2012 1:19 pm
Ah, I bet I would like the Cat Camp relative :) I am glad you had a nice Christmas. Cancer touches so many lives and the holidays can be a time when we miss those we lost to it. May you and your family be blessed with a safe and happy New Year as well!
Dec. 28, 2012 1:48 pm
Nice blog Mike. I too was amazed at Santa's efficient journey around the world. We are hoping to be a part of that survivors group with a pet scan done in a couple of weeks. Wish us luck kid! XO to you and the Mrs.
Dec. 28, 2012 2:14 pm
Wonderful blog Mike.Santa does do amazing things.Cat is right you seem to miss those we lost around this time of year.My sister died of breast cancer,she was 49 years old.You bet your "boobie"my other 2 sisters and myself,get checked,and i do miss her alot.It's been 8 years but it seems like yesterday. Mauigril,best of luck to you with your tests.Mike we do the runs for cancer every year we do the CIBC run for the cure,and other ones that go on around town.All the best to you and your family in 2013.
Dec. 28, 2012 2:19 pm
There are never enough reminders, Hrather. Thank you!
Dec. 28, 2012 2:28 pm
Mike, as the husband of a breast cancer survivor, I can't agree with you more about awareness and self checks. Now, I wasn't aware that exhaustion could be an indicator of cancer. I'm making an appointment for my BP check anyway, so I'll talk to my doctor about it. It is so hard to tell these things as you get older because exhaustion seems to be coming with the package. I thought it might be my CPAP getting inefficient. I thought the USAF was going to stage a couple of carriers in the Pacific to provide CAP and escort for Santa.
Dec. 28, 2012 2:32 pm
That "Cat Camp Relative" is stubborn, single minded, talkative, and unswayable. She'd fit into the Cat Camp perfectly! ;) Thank you for the well wishesn and may you and your family have a super 2013!
Dec. 28, 2012 2:36 pm
That PET scan is important for other things too, mauigirl! Mine revealed that aorta aneurism that would have killed me. As always, you have my prayers and support as this horrible chapter closes in your lives. Send me an email when you find out, OK?
Dec. 28, 2012 2:41 pm
manella, don't give up on those events! Every cent is needed in this fight. Last summer, magnolia Blossom, Candice, Lady Sparkle, Christine NICU, Mrs. Mike and I participated in a Relay for Life in Kearney, Missouri and the AR members rewarded our efforts with a $1,380.00 collection.
Dec. 28, 2012 3:05 pm
wow,mike that's great,because my sisters live in Edmonton,and i live in Nova Scotia,when the CIBC run is on my sisters and families do the run there,and i walk on my treadmill,until they phone me and tell me it is over.I usually collect a couple hundred dollars from friends.Then there are the ones here,in which we all do.
Dec. 28, 2012 3:12 pm
I spent Christmas Eve with my very close friends as I do most years. Three of the four sisters are breast cancer survivors. Sadly, most families (at least in this country) have been touched by the disease. I keep all you survivors in my prayers. It isn't enough just to survive, people need to learn how to modify their behaviors to ensure no reoccurrences. You are a great advocate, Mike.
Dec. 28, 2012 4:01 pm
Exhaustion is an indicator doc, usually as an accompaniment with another symptom but it can be an indicatr by itself. When I graduated from older adult to senior citizen, tired and exhausted became the norm. ... Often, cancer survivors are congratulated for beating cancer, and I offer my congratulations to your wife.
Dec. 28, 2012 4:04 pm
manella, you make me think of "The Little Engine That Could"!
Dec. 28, 2012 4:13 pm
Thank you, BigShotsMom! The prevalence of cancer in it's many forms is frightening. What is even more frightening is the number of people that hide from it even when they have been diagnosed with cancer, ignoring the necessity of early treatment.
Dec. 28, 2012 4:32 pm
Hi Mike; for myself I always try to be aware of not only myself but my family. While not with myself cancer has hit several members of my family. Some have passed while others like yourself have survied. Keep up the great work of reminding us all.
Dec. 28, 2012 4:53 pm
Back to Doc. One extremely important factor to my successful recovery is my wife as my caregiver. I'm sure that you were a caregiver, too and, if you didn't know it, the job elevated you from husband to heroic caregiver husband. Here's a blog post I wrote when I knew my treatment was working. Perhaps your wife feels the same. ... http://allrecipes.com/cook/13101603/blogentry.aspx?postid=211522
Dec. 28, 2012 4:56 pm
I shall do that, Nadine! Thank you!
Dec. 28, 2012 5:01 pm
MIKE:):) We are Blessed to have you in our lives to give us great fruitcake, tell us to check our body and let us stuff you in trunks and kidnap you to visit friends in the middle of the country!! THANK YOU THANK YOU for loving us enough to care:):) Happy New Year and good riddends to 2012!
Dec. 28, 2012 5:31 pm
All joshing aside about that fruitcake, although I bet that relative and I would so hit it off, cancer has claimed 3 lives in my family so I do appreciate you keeping us aware. My sister had the majority of the caretaker role at the end of my Mom's life and that is a hard rold. It was absolutely awesome that you came all the way here, albeit in the trunk, to walk in that cancer walk and you inspired others to join you. Again Happy New Year!
Dec. 28, 2012 6:12 pm
Cancer is NOT your friend - in any form. Be it skin cancer to one of the forms that attacks the vital organs and body parts. My family history is that of skin cancer - from the surface basal cell carcinoma to the deadly melanoma. My grandfather, father, brother and now me. I've had squamous cell carcinoma cut out of my foot and I'm now recovering from MOHS surgery - 52 stitches - where they cut more out of my left wrist. And they're not done - I've got to have more MOHS soon. I would like to give this warning indicator out to those that may not be aware of it. . . . if you have a "sore" or wound that won't heal - - or it may superficially heal and then become a sore again - - see your doctor. This "can be" an indication of a deeper problem - - in my case it's skin cancer - - but non-healing sores can also be an indication of diabetes - - but don't ignore a non-healing sore or wound. If the body is healthy and functioning properly, a sore or wound should heal. Please know that I'm not trying to scare anyone, . . . only trying to make awareness of symptoms a key factor in battling and winning the war against cancer. I'm one of the blessed ones - skin cancer is usually a winnable war - but ignoring it in any form is never good - - be pro-active - if in doubt - - see your doctor - - and ask questions and get answers - ignorance is the enemy. Know your enemy. . and FIGHT!!!!
Dec. 28, 2012 6:47 pm
And I feel blessed to have my AR friends to care about, Patty! There's so much positive that would not have transpired if I did not belong to this site. Even though I get packed away in the trunk of a Camaro, the trip was worth the pain when I got to meet those great gals of The Midwest Roundup.
Dec. 28, 2012 6:54 pm
My sister and I were the principal caregivers as my mother was fighting untreatable leiomyosarcoma in her lungs. It is a tough job, Cat, but one I would be willing to deal with again.
Dec. 28, 2012 7:21 pm
So well said, luv2cook! Amen! It is very important that you, especially, pay very close attention to the soft areas of your body. Squamous Cell Carcinoma, though a skin cancer, will migrate to the inside of a body even in Stage 1. That's the cancer I had in my salivary gland and it is thought to have migrated there from a pre-cancerous dry scaley spot on my forhead. I found it under my jawbone at stage 2-3. So, watch yourself very closely.
Dec. 28, 2012 7:28 pm
Dear Mike, thank you for reminding us all of what we need to look for and may everyone's efforts, great or small, help to get rid of this horrible disease. Both my parents had some cancer, but both were treatable and did not affect their well-being. P.S. I echo Patty Cake's sentiments!!
Dec. 28, 2012 7:45 pm
Glad you had such a super holiday. I hope your health continues to improve. I would like to add-to children of all ages-keep your bones in good health. Eat right and do a lot of weight-bearing exersize (or as much as you can do safely-ask the doctor). Don't wait till you have bone loss. Laughter-and food, especially home cookin', are the best medicine.
Dec. 28, 2012 8:22 pm
Wow, Mike! I love the way you lay it out. As a care giver for my wife, I must say first that there was so much more I could have done, but I also tried to do my best for her every day. At first we were both so afraid, but the good news just kept coming. And prayers kept getting answered daily. As you point out, help seems to come out of the woodwork. My dear wife ended up having a double mastectomy and reconstruction, but on the very bright side, the cancer was caught at stage I and the lymph nodes were clear of cancer cells. She did not have radiation or chemo and has been clear for four years now. She keeps abreast (I pun without even trying!) of new cancer research because she is a scientist, and she has a vested interest in it. That was one of her main coping mechanisms, being involved in what was happening. When we were living in Germany her doctor recommended against mammograms because of her tissue density, despite a strong history of fatty cysts. We happened to get sent home a year earlier than we had planned on and the doctor here in New Jersey was shocked that my wife hadn't had a mammogram in 5 years. I think we had been living here about six months when we got the phone call. Some people would call it coincidence or good luck. I know it is God's love and grace that sent us in an unexpected direction instead of leaving us where we might not have found the cancer until it was a much later stage and harder to deal with.
Dec. 29, 2012 4:47 am
Magnolia Blossom, Any effort to destroy cancer is a great effort. It is all necessary in this war on cancer.
Dec. 29, 2012 4:50 am
Robindiamond316, those very exercises and diet are exactly paralell to the lifestyle change that is recommended for post cancer living. Thank you!
Dec. 29, 2012 5:06 am
Doc, being a caregiver is like anything else when thinking in retrospect. We will always find things that could have improved the situation. I think it is the human way to be prepared for a re-occurrance (God forbid) and it should never be a source of guilt or shame. When you have done your best you simply pick up your chin and look straight ahead with satisfaction that the job was done well! ... I have a predispostion (from life experiences) to be frightened of any physician who says there is no use for mammograms or who says "keep an eye on it". My neice was almost killed by a doctor that did both of those things. My advice when anybody says their doctors advice is like that, "Run like hell for another doctor!"
Dec. 29, 2012 6:06 am
I'll second that "run like hell for another doctor" The DH's mother found "lumpy tissue" and the DR ignored it. By the time she went back the cancer had spread everywhere and she was gone in 6 months.
Dec. 29, 2012 6:06 am
Happy New Year Mike. Thank you for continuing to remind us all to be vigilant in our fight against cancer. My son lost a great friend to breast cancer. He was in his early 40's. Yes, HE had a cosmetic procedure done to remove, what he called 'man boobs' sadly, no biopsy was done. By the time he realized that something was very wrong, it was too late for Mark. Cancer doesn't recognize age or gender. Again, thank you for continuing to spread the word and educate us all.
Dec. 29, 2012 6:20 am
Mike-thanks for the reminder-I miss my Grandma, (who died from cancer), every day. If she would of believed in going to the doctor, she may have had many years more than she did. I wish you and your family good health and peace in the new year.
Dec. 29, 2012 10:01 am
That experience is much too frequent, Cat.
Dec. 29, 2012 10:12 am
Baking Nana, so far,in Kalamazoo County, there have been four cases of male breast cancer, up from zero in eleven years. We are all hoping that statistic is an historic fluke not to be repeated. That brings to mind the all-too-typical male attitude that they will not get cancer because of one ridiculous excuse or another. This is what I call "the super macho death wish". I was told more than once that checking the boy parts makes them feel wierd or they don't check because they don't feel pain. DUH!!!
Dec. 29, 2012 10:18 am
I'm sorry for the loss of your grandmother, Lela. My paternal grandmother died when I was four so I never got to know her. In my (much) later years I learned it was breast cancer that killed her. Since I have become involved with cancer awareness, I learned that she suffered horribly because there was little affective pain medication in 1949. Strange as it seems, I have come to know her better for the courage and caring she displayed to her family as she faded away.
Dec. 29, 2012 11:39 am
Very sorry your grandmother had to go through that Mike.The poor woman.My husband gets checked, the DR.says every 5 years.So far,the check ups have been very good.Right now i have four friends with cancer,3 women 1 man.Two of them are going through kemo,and the other two,are in remission.Keeping our fingers crossed on all fronts.Mike thanks for doing this,as all say,cancer awareness should be on going.
Dec. 29, 2012 3:37 pm
Every five years is satisfactory for a colonoscopy, manella, but more often for all soft tissue. I do my self checks once a month and my primary care physician does a physical once each year and blood/urine work ups every six months.
Dec. 29, 2012 5:15 pm
Happy to hear that Mike,just keep taking care of yourself.Hopefully all will do the same.
Dec. 30, 2012 10:56 am
Thanks for the reminder, Mike. I wish you and your loved ones a happy and healthy new year!
Dec. 30, 2012 1:10 pm
Wishing you and Mrs. Mike a very happy and HEALTHY New Year! Thank you for all your wisdom and efforts in making sure we are all diligent in taking care of ourselves! Catching a sign early can be life saving and we want all us Buzzers to be around for a long time! :D
Dec. 30, 2012 3:46 pm
Peace and MANY blessings in 2013 to you and the family, Mike!
Click to Change your Profile Picture
Mike Harvey, daPITA

Living In
Battle Creek, Michigan, USA

Member Since
Dec. 2008

Cooking Level

Cooking Interests
Grilling & BBQ, Frying, Stir Frying, Mexican, Italian, Southern, Gourmet

Gardening, Fishing, Photography, Reading Books

Subscribe Today!

In Season

Crunchy Kale Snacks
Crunchy Kale Snacks

Kale is the healthy, green leaf that transforms into a crunchy snack chip in your oven.

So Many Pork Chop Recipes
So Many Pork Chop Recipes

You can't go wrong choosing from over 400 pork chop recipes with ratings and tips!

Subscribe Today! Only $7.99
Subscribe Today! Only $7.99

Delicious recipes, party ideas, and cooking tips! Get a year of Allrecipes magazine for $7.99!

About Me
At age 16, I began cooking when my mother was injured in an accident that kept her off her feet for five weeks. At first, my repertoire was fried hot dogs with pork and beans, boiled hot dogs with macaroni and cheese or pizza from a box. After a couple weeks of this, my younger brother was the first to protest and demand variety and my dad was quick to support him. That was my first cooking challenge, learning to plan a meal. About that time, mom returned from the hospital and from her bed, began teaching me things like roast beef, fried chicken, stews and all the sides and trimmings. In 1967, I married and my wife designated herself as the cook and this continued until 1999. It was then that I (voluntarily) began cooking again. At some point, I realized that I was having fun and began searching for recipes that were more challenging and interesting. I found AR and used it's recipes for a long time before registering and later becoming an active member.
My favorite things to cook
Soups. How can I go wrong? They are a great way to use up leftovers and those veggies that are approaching the end of their usefulness. They are always an original recipe. Roasts and steaks are favored, also. Getting the right "doneness" and choosing appropriate sides for a tastey and attractive meal is a continuing and always evolving menu.
My favorite family cooking traditions
If creating impulsive menus and recipes is a tradition then, (I guess) we have a tradition. A new tradition is developing. I have a fruitcake recipe that, I believe, is near perfection. I make it just before Thanksgiving so it is aged enough for the Christmas/ New Year holidays.
My cooking triumphs
Without a doubt, my own recipe for a Reuben Sandwich. It has been a demanded item for many years and I shared it in my AR blog. http://allrecipes.com/Cook/13101603/BlogEntry.aspx?postid=204609
My cooking tragedies
Too many. I have been able to throw them out and have something new before my wife gets home. Most of the time, anyway.
Argentina  |  Australia & New Zealand  |  Brazil  |  Canada  |  China  |  France  |  Germany  |  India  |  Italy  |  Japan  |  Korea  |  Mexico

Netherlands  |  Poland  |  Quebec  |  Russia  |  SE Asia  |  United Kingdom & Ireland  |  United States