étoile du matin

The planet Venus above Otter Lake from Goddard Bay in the morning.

One of the nicknames of the planet Venus is “the Morning Star”. It’s also known as the Evening Star. Of course, Venus isn’t a star at all, so why does Venus have these nicknames?

The orbit of Venus is inside the orbit of Earth. Unlike the outer planets, Venus is always relatively close to the Sun in the sky. When Venus is on one side of the Sun, it’s trailing the Sun in the sky and brightens into view shortly after the Sun sets, when the sky is dark enough for it to be visible. When Venus is at its brightest, it becomes visible just minutes after the Sun goes down. This is when Venus is seen as the Evening Star.

When Venus is on the other side of the Sun, it leads the Sun as it travels across the sky. Venus will rise in the morning a few hours before the Sun. Then as the Sun rises, the sky brightens and Venus fades away in the daytime sky. This is Venus the Morning Star.

Lucifer ‘light-bringer’, corresponding to the Greek name, Ἑωσφόρος. ‘dawn-bringer’ is a Latin name for the planet Venus in its morning appearances and is often used for mythological and religious figures associated with the planet. Due to the unique movements and discontinuous appearances of Venus in the sky, the mythology surrounding these figures often involved a fall from the heavens to earth or the underworld.

Interpretations of a similar term in the Hebrew Bible, translated in the King James Version as “Lucifer”, led to a Christian tradition of applying the name Lucifer, and its associated stories of a fall from heaven, to Satan.

Lucifer the ‘light-bringer’.

So are you feeling the light?  Channeling Venus or Lucifer?

What’s in a name?

Thank you to UniverseToday and Wikipedia

Understanding Hospice

dievca’s Dad will receive Hospice Care – a UTI, a round with Pneumonia and having trouble getting all the nutrients put him into the suggested category. But the true determinate is Dad’s not trying. dievca gets it – he’s tired.

The only problem is that dievca had a two-week timeframe in her mind for death. Her past experiences with “Hospice” were a quick end. Her good friend didn’t make it home the day she was to leave the hospital for Hospice and her Aunt died the 1st night back at home.

she was incorrect.

Hospice Care is a shifting of focus:

Healing and getting someone up and running.
vs.
Helping someone be comfortable if they cannot handle (or don’t want to handle) the push to recover from all ailments.

To qualify for Hospice assistance, the person needs to be seen as passing within 6 months. There are target criteria for various health issues.

That doesn’t mean that they cannot have care beyond 6 months and that doesn’t mean that if they feel better they cannot move into a recovery mode. It just means that they take care of issues with Nurses at home, rather than staying in a hospital or rehab program. No one insisting on Speech therapy, an MRI or a prescription of statins, etc.

dievca’s Dad is tired of hospitals and has gone through 6 recoveries. He’s not feeling the juice of Life, right now. Again, got it.

Dad has been living with a non-reparable hole in his heart for years. Amazing.

Look, she knows he may go tomorrow, but she’s seen him bounce back.
To be honest, she’s getting a bit tired, too. Dad and Mom’s health is a rollercoaster ride.

What Is Palliative Care?

This program aims to ease pain and help with other problems if your illness is serious but not considered to be life-threatening for now.

It helps people live with the symptoms of long-running things such as cancer, kidney disease or AIDS, or with the side effects of the treatments.

Palliative medicine doesn’t replace other treatments. It’s an addition that helps you and your family deal with things such as nausea, nerve pain, or shortness of breath.

What Is Hospice Care?

Sometimes called, “Comfort Care”. This is for people who have learned from doctors that they are not expected to recover from their condition. It’s about easing pain and helping families prepare for the end of life. Palliative care is part of that, but it’s just one part.

People in hospice care generally are expected to have less than 6 months to live. They’re often at home, where family members and professional caregivers look after them. But you could also choose a specialized center for hospice care. It’s also offered at many nursing homes and hospitals.

Every Medicare-certified hospice provider must provide these four levels of care:
  • Level 1: Routine Home Care.
      • Nursing services
      • Physician participation
      • Social services
      • Home health aide services
      • Counseling services (pastoral, spiritual, bereavement, dietary, and others)
      • Medications
      • Medical equipment
      • Medical supplies
      • Lab and diagnostic studies related to a terminal diagnosis
      • Therapy services
  • Level 2: Continuous Home Care.
      • Some examples of symptoms requiring continuous care would be:
        • Unrelieved pain
        • Severe nausea and vomiting
        • Severe shortness of breath
        • Anxiety or panic attacks
        • A breakdown in the primary caregiver support system
  • Level 3: General Inpatient Care.
      • A free-standing facility owned and operated by a hospice company
      • An inpatient hospice unit within a hospital
      • A hospice unit in a skilled nursing facility (nursing home)
  • Level 4: Respite Care.
      • Respite care services are more for the family than for the patient. If the patient does not meet the criteria to qualify them for continuous care or inpatient care, but the family is having a difficult time
      • If a patient’s family is the primary source of care and cannot meet their loved one’s needs due to caregiver stress or other extenuating circumstances, a patient may temporarily be admitted to an inpatient environment to give the family a needed break or respite.
      • There is a five-day limit on respite care. Once that period expires, the patient is discharged and returns home.

dievca’s Parents have assistance at home. That hasn’t changed.  dievca’s Dad will have a Nurse visit three times a week in addition to the caregiver’s help and will be keeping the urinary catheter from the UTI unless he starts to stand up effectively or the Nurse says it needs to be taken out. That is a battle that dievca is glad she is not involved with~

OK, she needs to make a “Mix Tape” for her Parents.  They haven’t had enough music in their life lately. Thanks for letting her hash it out.

XO

A "Thank you" to WebMD and VeryWellHeath.

Finding peace over an orechovník (nut roll) – 02/09/2018

dievca found this post in her drafts from 2 year ago. Its from a tough time, but the source of Joy still makes her smille.

dievca’s last Aunt (both sides) passed away in Spring 2017. She was batshit crazy. Her Dad’s sister was bound and determined to live longer than dievca’s Dad – making the act of breathing a competition.

dievca’s Dad is in the hospital with bleeding on the brain – it will go either way. We have no control and dievca has been going home as much as possible, knowing each visit might be the last. she’ll be upset down the line, but right now she is at peace with herself and planning to get a flight after she hears from her brother.

After packing, dievca was digging in the freezer and she found an orechovník that her Aunt sent to her right before her death. It was made in one of the local Pittsburgh area Catholic church kitchens. dievca added the frozen orechovník to her bag. It would survive the flight.

Dad didn’t have a stroke, he was having seizures and the hospital was able to get them under control.

At her parent’s house, dievca pulled out the orechovník and her Mom asked where it came from.  When dievca told her it was from the challenging Aunt who passed, her Mom laughed and sat with dievca to have tea and a buttered piece.  The frozen orechovník traveled well.

Orechovník is a piece of childhood memories for dievca: staying with a favorite Aunt or visiting any family member. A piece would be eaten with ham, butter, or nothing.  Rolls would be packed into the car for the return trip to the Midwest. Kept frozen in a cooler to appear at Christmas and Easter. Rolls would be brought when cousins, Uncles, and Aunts visited the Midwestern outpost of the family.

In the hospital, dievca told her Dad about the orechovník. The news elicited a reaction. An eye-roll for his deceased pain-in-the-a** sister, as Dad had just broken her record for years of being alive.

For all her drama and headaches – dievca’s Aunt left a piece of Joy to share and that turned out to be a moment of peace and humor after chaos.

2020 – dievca’s Dad is still kicking after this episode. He is still on the seizure meds, but has weaned himself off of the feeding tube. Finding this unpublished post and thinking about that damn orechovník made dievca smile.  she just might have to beg her cousins to send her one~ and send her parents one, too.

 

What is an orechovník (nut roll)?

A nut roll is a pastry consisting of sweet yeast dough (usually using milk) that is rolled out very thin, spread with a nut paste made from groundnuts and a sweetener like honey, then rolled up into a log shape. This ‘log’ is either left long and straight or is often bent into a horseshoe shape, egg washed, baked, and then sliced crosswise. Nut rolls resemble a jelly roll (Swiss roll) but usually with more layers of dough and filling, and resemble strudels but with fewer and less delicate dough layers. Fillings commonly have as their main ingredient ground walnuts or poppy seeds.

Nut rolls can be found in the United States and in Central European cuisines. In the United States, “nut roll” is a more or less generic name for pastries of this type, no matter where they originate. Nut rolls are known also by many specific regional names, including gubana, guban’ca, or potica in Slovene; orechovník in Slovak; makowiec in Polish; povitica, gibanica, orahnjača/orehnjača in Croatian and Serbian (walnut variant, makovnjača for variant with poppy seed, in Croatia can also be made with carob); kalács and bejgli in Hungarian; and pastiç (pastiche) or nokul in Turkish.

Regional variations on nut rolls are part of weddings, for Easter and Christmas, as well as other celebrations and holidays.


“No man is a failure who has friends.”

dievca is worried about this happening at Christmas dinner:

But she has fantastic friends, so dinner should be more elegant:
It doesn’t matter as long as everyone feels welcome and enjoys themselves.

Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukkah!
from dievca’s home to yours

XO🎄

Quote from 'It's a Wonderful Life'

A little love from NYC

Photo: dievca NYC 12/2018

Sometimes we are a small speck in the wide World.
But Joy can still shine through.
Love to you in this challenging time of the Year.


Velvet Lingerie – A Holiday Offering

Madalynne Intimates Noelle custom velvet lingerie

Velvet is a type of woven tufted fabric in which the cut threads are evenly distributed, with a short dense pile, giving it a distinctive soft feel. By extension, the word velvety means “smooth like velvet.” Velvet can be made from either synthetic or natural fibers.

Velour or velours is a plush, knitted fabric or textile similar to velvet or velveteen. It is usually made from cotton, but can also be made from synthetic materials such as polyester. Velour is used in a wide variety of applications, including clothing and upholstery.

Click on the photos for brands of the items:


Traveling with a Foodie

Traveling with a “foodie” can be a complete challenge.

Every meal analyzed, every type of food must be explored, on a mission to find certain foods or tools to make the local foods. Insistence upon their way for all food choices – even snacks. FOMO – food-wise.
It gets old, but one tends to go with the flow if said one has no real food-driven desires – only insisting that the complaints of an unchosen meal be limited before the said person goes meltdown on the foodie’s a**.

dievca is not the foodie.

she did not insist that they take a 45+ minute tram to Jerónimos Monastery for an egg custard tart. Packed in like a sardine with people yelling a conversation over her head.
No – that was the foodie who insisted that Pastéis de Belém was reputed to have the best tarts in Lisbon – fresh from the oven… which entailed another 1-hour wait in chaos for the treat to arrive.

The egg custard tarts are not one of dievca’s favorites, but the foodie was in HEAVEN!
So much, in fact, a quest was commenced to scour the city for places to buy the tart tins for the egg custards to be made at home.

An Australian Food blog saved the day, giving three locations to buy the tart tins in Lisbon — one shop was relatively nearby. Then the damn foodie was miffed that the price went up to a Euro for each tin when the 4-year-old blog post said 83 cents per tin….eyeroll.
dievca did send the blogger a message, thanking her for the help.

Anyways, back in Belém, after eating the tarts it was found that the monastery was packed with Asian tourists and the line to wait was insane. The crew just wandered the surrounding park, river walk, and hopped a packed bus back to Lisbon. It was faster than the tram and offered the bonus of watching a European street busker hit on an All-American slice of sunshine~

So, that long intro explains why dievca’s eye was caught with this
NYT Article: The Chocolate Cake that Saved My Vacation

dievca wasn’t too interested in the egg custard tarts – but she could have really gone into a “foodie mode” for Chocolate Cake. Plus, she had great empathy for the writer’s experiences on the #28 Tram after her own tram ride.
BTW, dievca took that #28 tram to transverse Lisbon, but she started before 8 am on a Sunday — no one was on it.

Here’s what dievca wants to make:

Lisbon Chocolate Cake

  • YIELD: One 9-inch cake (about 10 servings)
  • TIME: About 1 hour, plus cooling

Lisbon Chocolate Cake

Sarah Anne Ward for The New York Times. Food stylist: Maggie Ruggiero. Prop stylist: Amy Elise Wilson.

INGREDIENTS

FOR THE CAKE:

  • ½ cup/115 grams unsalted butter (1 stick), cut into chunks, plus more for greasing the pan
  •  cup/30 grams unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 ½ tablespoons cornstarch
  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 5 ounces/140 grams dark chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • ½ cup/100 grams granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs, chilled

FOR THE GANACHE:

  • 1 ¾ cups/420 milliliters heavy cream
  • 6 ounces/170 grams semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped

FOR THE TOPPING:

    • 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder

PREPARATION

  1. Make the cake: Center a rack in the oven, and heat oven to 325 degrees. Butter a 9-inch cake pan, line with parchment paper and butter the paper.
  2. Sift together the cocoa powder, cornstarch, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl. Whisk to blend.
  3. Put the 1/2 cup butter in a large heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water. Scatter dark chocolate on top, and heat, stirring often, until the mixture is smooth and glossy. Remove the bowl from the pan, and stir in the sugar. One by one, energetically stir in the eggs, beating for 1 minute after the last egg is added. The mixture will look like pudding. Stir in the dry ingredients. Scrape the mixture into the cake pan, and give the pan a couple of good raps against the counter to settle the batter.
  4. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes, or until a tester inserted into the center comes out clean (or with only a tiny streak of chocolate). Transfer to a rack, cool for 5 minutes, then unmold the cake. Peel off the paper, invert the cake and cool to room temperature. Wash and dry the cake pan.
  5. Make the ganache: Pour 1 1/4 cups cream into a small saucepan; refrigerate the rest. Scald the cream over medium heat, turn off the heat and stir in the semisweet or bittersweet chocolate until fully incorporated. Transfer to a heatproof bowl. Refrigerate the ganache for 10 minutes, whisk it, then refrigerate again for 10 minutes. Repeat chilling and whisking steps until the ganache is thick enough to make tracks when you stir, 50 to 60 minutes.
  6. Cut two 3-by-16-inch pieces of parchment or foil, and crisscross them in the cake pan. Carefully return the cake to the pan.
  7. Whip the remaining 1/2 cup cream until it holds medium peaks.
  8. Using a whisk, gently beat the ganache until it’s soft and spreadable. With a spatula, fold in the whipped cream. Spread over the cake, and refrigerate for 2 hours (or cover and keep for up to 2 days). The cake is best served cool or at room temperature, so take it out of the fridge about 20 minutes before serving.
  9. To finish, put the cocoa powder in a fine-mesh strainer, and shake it over the top of the cake. Run a table knife along the sides of the pan. Using the parchment or foil handles, carefully lift the cake out of the pan and onto a serving plate. Discard the strips. Cut the cake using a long knife that has been run under hot water and wiped dry between each cut.