Set Goals To Help You Overcome Cancer

Anyone who wants to turn their hopes and dreams into realities can benefit from writing about their goals. This is especially important if you have been diagnosed with a serious illness, form mesothelioma, fibromyalgia to even autoimmune disorders. When faced with a serious diagnosis, people sometimes stop trying to achieve goals because they’re afraid they won’t be able to accomplish them in their lifetimes or feel that nothing matters besides their illness. However, setting and achieving goals can help you live a high quality life despite your diagnosis and might aid you in living a longer, healthier life despite a stated prognosis. 

Short-Term Goals
Patients often focus on short-term goals such as getting through treatment or going into remission for a year. Writing about these tangible goals can help them cope with treatment better. Just as anyone who sets a goal is more likely to achieve it, patients who set goals for their treatment have a better prognosis than those who do not. 

Patients can approach these short-term goals in a variety of ways. Writing down their goals and hanging them up where they can see them helps remind them of what they are trying to achieve and keeps them focused on recovery. Some patients also find it helpful to keep a journal about their treatment. Journaling is an effective way to release negative feelings about disease so that patients can remain in the positive state of mind necessary for cancer recovery.

Quality of Life
It’s important for patients to avoid focusing exclusively on their disease and its treatment. Before getting ill, most people had hobbies and things they looked forward to, and it can sometimes be difficult to focus on these things after a diagnosis. However, enjoying life as much as possible for as long as they can after diagnosis can help patients recover better. In addition, individuals should make as many good memories as possible—-positivity is uplifting and guides healing. 

Thus, patients should add some daily goals to their treatment goals. For example, some patients may set a goal of reading a certain amount of pages in a book. Writing down these goals can help patients remember the things they enjoy and give them things to look forward to, both of which can help improve their chances of recovering from cancer.

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Homemade Triple Onion Dip

Homemade Triple Onion Dip

Yields 2 cups

Prep Time: 40 minutes; Total Time: 40 minutes
For a less sweet version of this dip, reduce the cooking time for the onions. I also suggest making a big batch of the caramelized onions ahead of time and freeze them. That way, you’ll be prepared to make dip immediately whenever the urge strikes! (Just thaw the onions and follow start at step 2.). For a vegetarian-friendly dip, look for Worcestershire that doesn’t contain anchovy. 


    • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
    • 1 Tablespoon Butter
    • 2 Yellow Onions, chopped
    • 1 Shallot, minced
    • 1/2 cup Vegetable Stock
    • 16 ounces Reduced Fat Sour Cream
    • 3-4 dashes Worcestershire Sauce
    • 4 Green Onions, white and light green parts chopped
    • 1/4 teaspoon Garlic Powder, or to taste
    • Salt and Pepper, to taste


  1. Add the oil and butter to a small sauté pan set over medium heat. Once melted, add the onion, shallot, and a pinch of salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until soft and golden brown – about 15 minutes. Add the stock. Cook another 15 minutes, or until the onions are deeply browned and all of the liquid has cooked off. Remove from heat and let cool.
  2. Add the sour cream to a medium mixing bowl. Stir in the caramel used onions, Worcestershire sauce, and green onions. Season to taste with garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Chill until ready to serve.
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2 cups minced krab
1 bunch green onions, minced
1-8 oz. package Sargento grated Sun dried tomato cheese (if you can’t find this used pepper jack cheese)
1-14 oz. jar sundried tomatoes, drained and minced*
1 small jar roasted red peppers, drained and minced
1 heaping teaspoon Frank’s hot sauce
1 package Knorr Spring Vegetable Soup Mix**
1 cup sour cream
1 cup mayonnaise
·         Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.
·         Spray 9 inch stoneware round with PURE.
·         Toss together the krab, onions, red peppers and artichoke hearts.
·         Stir soup mix into sour cream and mayonnaise. Stir in cheese and hot sauce into soup mixture.
·         Fold krab mixture into soup mixture.
·         Spread into stoneware.
·         Bake 30 minutes until top is just golden.
·         Serve hot or cold.
I serve it with wheat thins.
*I sometimes trade for 1-14 oz. jar marinated artichoke hearts, drained
**Mrs. Grass works well too.
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Even though this is triple layered there are only two components to make because the crust ‘dough’ is split in half and serves as the topping too. The bars go in the oven three times: first to cook the crust then to cook the crust with the filling then one last time with the crumbs on top to bring it all together. Three times a charm.
At first glance, this recipe didn’t look very promising. My expectations were low. When I’m wrong I admit it. I was wrong. I’m excited now over the possibilities and can’t wait to make them with cranberries, cherries or figs for a seasonal treat… and wonder how chocolate chips would work out. Reasons enough to make them and eat them again and again because. . .
I heart sour cream raisin oatmeal bars!
These unassuming bars become unforgettable after only one or two bites.
Just long enough to reel you in hook, line and sinker. Resistance is futile.

Sour Cream Raisin Oatmeal Bars

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes
Yield: 1 (9×13) pan
Sour Cream Raisin Oatmeal Bars
This old-fashioned favorite starts with an oatmeal crust followed by a cooked sour cream and raisin filling that ends with buttery crumbs gracing the top. Three-layers of irresistible decadence.

2 cups golden raisin

1 cup coconut rum

1 + 3/4 cups old-fashioned oats (not quick cooking)

1 + 3/4 cups flour

1 cup brown sugar

1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup room temperature butter
4 egg yolks, lightly beaten
1 + 1/2 cups sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
2 cups sour cream (regular or light)

    • Put the raisins in a small bowl and cover them with the rum.
    • Pre-heat oven to 350° F. Spray a 9 x 13 baking dish with non-stick spray and line with parchment paper.
    • In a medium mixing bowl whisk together the oats, flour, brown sugar, and baking soda. Blend the butter in with a pastry blender or fork until small crumbles form. Measure out 1 + 1/2 cups of the topping into small bowl and refrigerate. Pat the rest of the topping evenly over the bottom of the prepared baking dish and bake for 15 minutes.
    • Meanwhile in a sauce pan over medium heat combine yolks, sugar, cornstarch, and sour cream. Cook over medium heat about 15-20 minutes until slightly thickened, the mixture should simmer slowly, if needed turn heat down. Some of the mixture may stick to the bottom of the pan – don’t scrape it up. Remove from heat. Drain the raisins and stir them into the sour cream mixture.
    • Pour the raisin mixture over the baked crust and bake for another 15 minutes until the edges are set but the middle is still very jiggly.
    • Crumble the remaining oatmeal mixture evenly over top of the bars and bake for another 15 minutes. The bars may still wobble a bit in the middle but will set up when cooled.
    • Allow to cool completely then refrigerate until well chilled. Remove bars using parchment to a cutting board and slice into squares or triangles with a chef’s knife wiped clean after each cut. Store in refrigerator up to 1 week.
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      I was going through some old boxes recently when I ran across these pictures.  While I’ve been through several major earthquakes, this was the worst! Thinking back to that horrible morning at 4:31 AM when I was sure a plane had crashed into our neighborhood, I realize now that we were very fortunate.  We lived near a DWP plant and what I thought was a plane was actually transformers blowing one by one down the line on a street behind our house.

      When it was all over less than a minute later, my feet were bruised so badly on the bottom I could barely stand, a freight train had gone through my hallway while a volcano had gone off in my house – at least that’s how it felt.  I was thrown from bed into a doorway, thank God.  When I was able to look into that same room all I saw was chaos and my bed was covered in shattered glass as well as several hundred pounds of books from the nearby bookcase.

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      Three years ago today my life was forever changed with a phone call saying I had “Cancer”. I will NEVER forget this day or all the support and love that my family and friends provided during my journey. The doctors, nurses and fellow cancer patients I met and have bonded with has been an amazing gift. I will always worry about my cancer coming back but right now I am so thankful and blessed to be here today. Thank you everyone for your love and support!!!
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      Cakes for Christmas: December baking partners challenge

      This month’s recipes are suggested by Tanushree of Ma Niche. She found 5 recipes for us. Four of them are Yule cake, and fifth one is Nicaraguan Christmas cake. There is a vegan version for health conscious bakers. 

      One of the Baking Partners Arthy Sharma asked about trying fondant as a part of baking challenge. So there is also a recipe for making fondant figurine in the Yule cake.

      Please stick to the recipe as much as possible. You can modify the recipe as your taste needs, like eggless, gluten free. Etc…  Even Though it looks like a mega project but worth trying it at least one time and one time was enough for me though I know it will be thoroughly enjoyed by hubby.

      Here is the recipe I chose from the list of choices:

      There are six components to the yule log which can be made over the course of 3 days.

      DAY 1:  praline feuillete and crème brûlée

      praline feuillete  
      (preparation time: 10 min)

      3.5 oz. (100g) milk chocolate
      1 2/3 tablespoons (25g) butter
      2 tablespoons (1 oz./30g) praline (I used hazelnut butter with 1 tsp sugar added)

      1 oz. rice krispies or corn flakes or Special K

      • Melt the chocolate and butter in a double boiler. 
      • Add the praline and the coarsely crushed lace crepes. Mix quickly to thoroughly coat with the chocolate. 
      • Spread between two sheets of wax paper to a size slightly larger than your desired shape. 
      • Refrigerate until hard.
      vanilla crème brûlée  
      (preparation time: 15min + 1h infusing + 1h baking)
      Note: The vanilla crème brûlée can be flavored differently by simply replacing the vanilla with something else e.g. cardamom, lavender, etc…

      1/2 cup (115g) heavy cream (35% fat content)

      1/2 cup (115g) whole milk

      4 medium (72g) egg yolks

      0.75 oz. (2 tbsps/25g) granulated sugar

      1 vanilla bean

      • Heat the milk, cream, and scraped vanilla bean to just boiling. 
      • Remove from the stove and let the vanilla infuse for about 1 hour. 
      • Whisk together the sugar and egg yolks (but do not beat until white). 
      • Pour the vanilla-infused milk over the sugar/yolk mixture. Mix well. 
      • Wipe with a very wet cloth and then cover your baking mold (whatever shape is going to fit on the inside of your Yule log/cake) with parchment paper. [Jen’s note: this doesn’t work and I agree from past experience] 
      • Pour the cream into the mold and bake at 300°F for about 1-1.5 hours in a water bath or until firm on the edges and slightly wobbly in the center. 
      • Let cool and put in the freezer for at least 1 hour to firm up and facilitate the final assembly.

      DAY 2: dacquoise, ganache and mousse

      dacquoise biscuit (almond cake)  
      (preparation time: 10 min + 15 min for baking)

      equipment: 2 mixing bowls, hand or stand mixer with whisk attachment, spatula, baking pan such as a 10”x15” jelly-roll pan, parchment paper.

      Note: You can use the dacquoise for the bottom of your yule log only, or as bottom and top layers, or if using a yule log mold (half-pipe) to line your entire mold with the biscuit. Take care to spread the dacquoise accordingly. Try to bake the dacquoise the same day you assemble the log to keep it as moist as possible.

      2.8 oz. (3/4 cup + 1 tbsp/80g) almond meal
      1.75 oz. (1/2 cup/50g) confectioner’s sugar
      2 tablespoons (15g) all-purpose flour
      3.5 oz. (100g/100ml) about 3 medium egg whites

      1.75 oz. (4 tbsp/50g) granulated sugar

      • Finely mix the almond meal and the confectioner’s sugar. (If you have a mixer, you can  use it by pulsing the ingredients together for no longer than 30 seconds). 
      • Sift the flour into the mix. 
      • Beat the eggs whites, gradually adding the granulated sugar until stiff. 
      • Pour the almond meal mixture into the egg whites and blend delicately with a spatula. 
      • Grease a piece of parchment paper and line your baking pan with it. 
      • Spread the batter on a piece of parchment paper to an area slightly larger than your desired shape (circle, long strip etc…) and to a height of 1/3 inches (8mm). 
      • Bake at 350°F (180°C) for approximately 15 minutes (depends on your oven), until golden. 
      • Let cool and cut to the desired shape.
      dark chocolate ganache 
      (preparation time: 10min)

      6 oz. dark chocolate, chopped

      3 oz. heavy cream

      • Place chocolate in a bowl. 
      • Heat the cream in a saucepan until just boiling. 
      • Remove from heat and pour over dark chocolate and let sit for a minute. Stir until smooth and silky. 
      • Pour onto parchment and let cool or set in a refrigerator.

      dark chocolate mousse 

      (preparation time: 15 min)
      10.5 oz. bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
      2 large eggs, room temperature
      5 large egg yolks, room temperature
      2/3 cup sugar
      3 tablespoons water

      2 cups heavy cream

      • Melt the chocolate in a microwave at half power for 30 seconds at a time, stirry after every 30 second interval until just melted. 
      • Pour chocolate in a bowl large enough to hold all ingredients and set aside until cooled to room temperature. 
      • Place eggs and yolks in a mixer with balloon whisk and whip for 1 minute. 
      • Put the sugar and water in a small saucepan and stir to moisten the sugar. Bring to a boil until temperature reaches 44°F (227°F for 8500 ft. elevation). 
      • Remove from heat. 
      • Start beating the eggs again on medium speed and slowly and steadily pour the sugar syrup, pouring down the center, not on the side of the bowl or on the whisk attachment. When all of the syrup is added, increase speed to high and beat until eggs pale, triple in volume, and cool to room temperature. 
      • In a large bowl, whip the heavy cream to medium peaks. Fold a quarter of the cream into the cooled chocolate. Fold in remaining cream, followed by egg mixture. 
      • Try not to deflate the batter too much.

      DAY 3: glaze

      dark chocolate icing (glaze)

      preparation time: 25 min (10 min if you don’t count softening the gelatin)
      Note: Because the icing gels quickly, you should make it at the last minute.
      Jen’s Note: I made twice as much as the amount listed below.
        4g or 1/2 tbsp powdered gelatin or 2 sheets gelatin
        1/4 cup (60g) heavy cream (35% fat content)
        2.1 oz. (5 tbsps/60g) granulated sugar
        1/4 cup (50g) water

        1/3 cup (30g) unsweetened cocoa powder

        • Soften the gelatin in cold water (about 1/4 cup of water for 1 tablespoon of powdered gelatin) for 15 minutes. 
        • Boil the rest of the ingredients and cook an additional 3 minutes after boiling. 
        • Add gelatin to the chocolate mixture. Mix well. 
        • Pour through a fine sieve. 
        • Let cool while checking the texture regularly. As soon as the mixture is smooth and coats a spoon well (it is starting to gel), use immediately.

        Note: You will want to tap your mold gently on the counter top after each time you pipe mousse in to get rid of any air bubbles.
        • Line your mold or pan with rhodoid (clear hard plastic, I usually use transparencies cut to the desired shape, it’s easier to find than cellulose acetate which is what rhodoid translates to in English) OR plastic film. Rhodoid will give you a smoother shape but you may have a hard time using it depending on the kind of mold you’re using. 
        • Pipe one third of the mousse component into the mold. 
        • Take the crème brûlée insert out of the freezer at the last minute and set on top of the mousse. 
        • Press down gently to slightly ensconce it in the mousse. 
        • Pipe second third of the mousse component around and on top of the crème brûlée. 
        • Cut the feuillete to a size slightly smaller than your mold so that it can be surrounded by mousse. 
        • Lay it on top of the mousse you just piped into the mold. 
        • Pipe the last third of the mousse component on top of the feuillete. 
        • Freeze for a few hours to set. 
        • Take out of the freezer. 
        • Pipe the ganache onto the frozen mousse leaving a slight edge so that ganache doesn’t seep out when you set the dacquoise on top.
        • Close with the dacquoise. 
        • Freeze OVER NIGHT.
        • Unmold the cake/log/whatever and set on a wire rack over a shallow pan. 
        • Cover the cake with the icing. 
        • Let set. 
        • Return to the freezer. 
        • Decorate. 
        • Transfer to the refrigerator no longer than 1/2 hour before serving as it may start to melt quickly.

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        I am playing along with Martha at Seaside Simplicity with the meme Flashback Friday.   Come join in on the fun and link up your photo.

        All our lives Jenn and I loved gathering shells on Galveston Island.  This trip was no exception. We were literally getting blown away, but had so much fun that day!! I’m pretty sure this was March 1998.

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