This is a report from a private journal I wrote in 2006. It’s been long enough now that I feel I can post it here.
As I begin my third time at Jury Duty, I’m moved to repost my private journals of my first experience.
This was first posted to my private journals in 2006. It’s going to be very long.
The short version: I was juror #14 (second alternate) on the double-homicide trial for a man named Thomas Marshall. He was the defendant in the shootings that took place at the Southcenter Mall in 2005. For those who don’t remember the case or are not in the area, here is the link.
As an alternate, I did not end up deliberating, but I do agree with the decision that was made in the case. It was the same decision that I would have made, based on the evidence presented.
Today after work, husband and I went to Target with a long wish list from a local womens shelter.
We got a minimum of one (and as many as 6) of each and every thing on the list. They’ll be able to make multiple gift bags for multiple women from our $100 shopping.
Here is the list we were given as a wish list:
Gift or phone cards ($5 or $10)
Night eye masks and ear plugs to make shelter living easier
Fun pieces of jewelry
Toiletry items (deodorant, disposable razor, hair products (African American hair products always requested) tissues, chapstick)
Puzzle books with a pen or pencil(crossword puzzles, Sudoku)
Daily planners or pocket calendars, inspirational books or quotes
Hot tea, cider, or hot chocolate packets
Microwaveable popcorn, granola bars, or small bags of snacks
So many of these items are $1 at places like Target. It made it exceptionally easy.
Those of us who are lucky enough to have gifts to give and receive should all consider giving the equivalent of one extra gift (in cash or goods) to someone in need. Youth shelters need MASSIVE help right now. So do food banks. Don’t forget pet food for the animal shelters too. And if you have no money, give an hour of your time to help sort others’ donations. I promise you will be glad you did.
The ultimate gift to me would be for my whole family to spend a few hours together, helping to make someone else’s day a bit better. I think I’ll suggest it! Who’s joining me?
I can’t believe it’s been nearly a year since I’ve written here.
2010 has been a very difficult year, and I’m fairly glad to see it on its way out. It’s mostly been health issues – one on top of the next – that have made it so tough.
The good news is that Dad is still with us. He beat Pancreatic Cancer.
Wait. Let me say that bigger and louder. MY DAD SURVIVED PANCREATIC CANCER. He has NO evidence of the disease, and is in the “1% Club.” Someday it will come back, but at this time, he is cancer free. That’s the best you can ever hope for with PanCan.
The treatment was horrendous, and he ended up in the hospital a couple of times, but he fought and he won. He officially got a clean bill of health in about September after a 6-week intensive course of 24/7 chemo via a pump, plus daily radiation, plus weekly “big” chemo. This was after an entire year of weekly chemo. He was beaten down, they took him to within inches of death, and brought him back.
What was equally amazing were the number of people who helped. I put out a message on a local news site and asked for volunteer drivers to help him to get to/from treatment daily (30 minutes from home for a 5 minute radiation appt!) and we had dozens of volunteers. Had to weed out a few weirdos, but not too many.
And now, he’s just gotten his first haircut. He’s almost good as new – still has to limit certain types of foods, as his stomach can no longer digest them. He’s got a bit of digestive damage from all the treatment, but it’s better than the alternative. So we’re very thankful.
I’m just now getting over the worst stomach bug of my life. 7 days of nonstop vomiting and diarrhea that only stopped for a few hours at a time when I went in to the ER or to see my doctor and got injections and IV fluids. It began much like a foodborne illness: Severe GI pain up high in my stomach (under the ribs) and then nonstop vomiting with diarrhea. The number of times I couldn’t deal with both ends at the same time were absolutely humiliating. By the end I simply wanted to die. I finally started to pray as I was throwing up one of the last times “Please make this go away – I can’t live through another day or more of it.” Something worked, because it finally stopped on Thursday afternoon. I had to wait 48 hours to eat, meaning it had been well over 2 weeks of nothing but pedialyte and jello when I began to try solids again. Holy COW I was hungry. I lost 20+ pounds in that week, and I’m just lucky I had it to lose.
Anyway, that’s all the health stuff. Tomorrow is my first day back to work after being so sick, and I’m hoping I have the strength to make it through the day. I’m still physically very weak and can’t walk super far. But I’ll manage. :)
More updates on everything else later.If I still have any readers left. Sorry I abandoned you all. I didn’t mean to — life just went sideways for a bit. I’m back now, though, and will get to writing again shortly.
Here’s a super quick and easy casserole-style dish you can make on the weekend and then divide up single-servings for lunches or dinners the following week.
1 package mushroom tortellini
1/2 cup dried mushrooms, chopped
1 can cannelini beans (or 2 c cooked white beans of any variety)
4 small tomatoes, seeded
1 head broccoli, chopped into bite-sized pieces
2 handsful frozen peas
1/2 cup cooked chicken, diced
1/2 onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 T butter
2 T flour, sifted
2 cups milk
6 oz cheese, cubed and divided into 3oz portions (use whatever cheese variety you have on hand)
Cook tortellini according to package directions.
While pasta is cooking, reconstitute mushrooms in warm water, and saute onion and garlic in butter until lightly browned. Sift flour over onion mixture and continue to cook on low-medium heat until flour has coated onions and begins to brown. Add milk, stirring frequently until mixture begins to thicken and then add half of the cheese mixture and allow to melt and incorporate entirely while stirring to make a thick cheese sauce.
Pour beans into oiled casserole dish with vegetables and chicken. Puree tomatoes in a blender or food processor and pour over bean and vegetable mixture.
Add tortellini once cooked, pour cheese sauce overtop, and fold ingredients together.
Sprinkle remaining cheese over top, and bake 30-45 min at 375.
This will be a fairly dry casserole. If you prefer it to be more saucy, throw in a can of cream of mushroom soup, or double the sauce recipe.
Filed under: Food, Recipe | Tagged: beans, cheese, dinner, easy, fast, fast and easy dinner made from leftovers, leftovers, lunch, mac n cheese, make-ahead, mushrooms, pasta, tortellini | Leave a comment »
Too bad. You don’t really get a choice. Is the beef industry trying to turn its customers into vegetarians? From the NY Times:
Eight years ago, federal officials were struggling to remove potentially deadly E. coli from hamburgers when an entrepreneurial company from South Dakota came up with a novel idea: injecting beef with ammonia.
Please read the rest of the article here: http://scienceblogs.com/mikethemadbiologist/2010/01/would_you_like_ammonia-laced_p.php
I don’t know about you, but I’m disgusted. I knew the meat industry was corrupt and profit-driven, but naively thought they wouldn’t stoop THIS low.
Will you commit to reducing your meat intake by one meal a week? More? Will you commit to buying only organic meats, or meats directly from local farmers/ranchers? What are you willing to change in order to stop these guys? If we didn’t buy the meat, if it weren’t profitable to poison people, they wouldn’t do it.
My dad was able to get himself upstairs last night and sleep in his own bed. He was also strong enough to stand long enough for a shower.
He’s still recovering from the recent complications, and his legs are really weak. But he’s improving a little each day.
The little things are all that matters.