Thursday, June 8, 2017

June 7th

Wow. It has been a long time since I have had been here. Like crazy long! I'm not sure there are people out there that still follow my blog since I disappeared, but I am hoping to start back up. I can't promise it will be weekly or monthly but I miss this part of my life. The fun cooking and getting to be creative in my kitchen.

So I am back here to celebrate a special day. Yesterday was an anniversary of sorts. My cancerversary. It's a real term in the cancer world. I did not coin it, though I wish had. Some people celebrate on the anniversary of the day they were diagnosed, or last day of treatment, or day they were NED (no evidence of disease). I might celebrate on all of these dates, because why not? 

Last year on June 7th I found out that I had cancer. The tumor I had was indeed the dreaded cancer. Stage 2b breast cancer, Invasive ductal carcinoma.  After that most of the past year was a giant whirlwind of tests, doctor appointments, chemo, radiation, hospital, surgery. Not super fun. Or easy.

But through it all I had amazing, like ridiculously amazing support. I don't know how others do cancer, hardness, or just life in general without it. My support was trifold. You know those painted, rustic signs that say Faith, Family, Friends. Well, they don't lie. That really is what it's all about. My faith was sure tested and tried and then some more. But God never left my side. Not in the chemo lab or the long anxious nights of unanswered questions or the draining hours of waiting for results. I was never alone. 
And speaking of alone, I really wasn't ever alone. Because my husband formed his every minute around me and my needs to get our family through as seamlessly as possible. He basically was an angel. And my mom, who was at my house constantly, night and day to care for me and my Ella. And well Ella, my cuddly and lovey, never tired, but cutest one year old lil' girl stayed right next to me. And I really do mean right next to me. I could name everyone here but it would be the longest document ever. My whole family, each member gave up all their free time and rearranged their lives to be our support system. It was way, way above and beyond what was expected.  They babysat, cleaned, drove, and cared for every aspect of day to day living. Speaking of day to day life, our church cooked meals for us so we never worried about finding time to food shop or cook. Our friends were constantly there for us in any way we needed. 

And most importantly, I had more people praying for me than I had ever met or ever thought would possibly cared to care for a stranger. I felt loved on in every direction. That is just what got me through each and every minute of treatment, stress, and fear that reigned over this past year.

But enough of that, after 10 months of active treatment I am finally at a place to relax and celebrate. I have no evidence of cancer in my body. Aside from mammograms and MRIs check ups and hormone therapy I am currently doing, my life is much less cancer dominated.

Now I can focus on living, not preventing dying. I can enjoy my family and friends. I can rest easier.

As a way to celebrate my "cancerversary" I made these easy but cute pink cupcakes. I shared them with some people who were part of that wonderful support system I mentioned earlier. 
Then Robert and I ordered out from our favorite Italian restaurant and had a delicious dinner. Cupcakes and Chicken Alfredo. That's my idea of celebrating.

I wanted to bake, but not do something super detailed or intense so I could relax and enjoy this day too. So I cheated. I used a boxed cake mix. Gasp. I doctored it up some and added pink sprinkles to the batter for some festive fun. 

For the icing, I found through the ever addictive Pinterest the easiest way to make faux fondant-like icing. I loved it. So simple.  I will be doing this frequently.

All you need is one can of store bought frosting, a microwave and bowl, and something to stir with.

And I added food coloring. Pink gel based. But any dye will do.

Here's what you do.

1. Scoop frosting into microwave safe bowl.

2. Microwave for 15 seconds. Stir well.

3. Microwave for 20 more seconds. Stir well again. 

4. If you wish to add coloring, now is the time. Stir in a few drops of liquid or small amount of gel and mix till incorporated.

5. If air bubbles rise to the surface pop them with a whatever utensil you have nearby. 

6. Dip your cupcake top into the icing and let excess icing run off. The icing will be thin, but don't be alarmed, it sets up quickly. Surprisingly quickly. And you can double dip too. I did two rounds with these cupcakes though it's not entirely necessary. 

7. Be sure to add any sprinkles or small decoration before the icing sets. 

Now let the icing finish setting and enjoy these faux fondant cupcakes.

Then eat or share. Either way, it's good.

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