Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Medicine For Melancholy


Getting back from New York, I was ready to hit the ground running. After all, I have a whole month and a half's worth of chores, work, errands, dinners, coffee dates piled up. Friends to see, garlic to plant, writing to do…

Instead, I became house-bound almost instantly, with a cold that just won't quit. So now all I do is drink  tea, do crafts and try to entertain myself. At first, I was quite bummed with the prospect of not being able to complete even the simplest of outdoor chores; cleaning the chicken coop, final weeding and covering of the garden, moving wood, but by now I've surrendered to the cold, which is quite mild and pleasant compared to the epic sinus-infections of yesteryear when we still lived in the moldy house.

After all, there's much to be pleased about.

First fires of the season.

My favorite cold cure/ comfort food:Miso with sauteed garlic, ginger, cabbage and carrots, served with seven minute eggs, brewer's yeast and hot sauce. It tastes mighty fine between echinacea tincture, oregon grape tincture and endless, nameless cups of tea.



Another beloved cold remedy is watching Ken Burns' The Civil War and Charlie got me this book, which makes for perfect "reading" for these kinds of brainless days.

I'm also loving a lot of other TV series. Usually I only watch TV and movies while I do leather work, or with Charlie, but when I'm sick I tend to binge watch shows and movies he might not be into. Lately I've enjoyed Continuum, Kim Ki Duk's Dream, Tiny-A Story Of Small Living and Top Of The Lake, which has got to be the most heartbreaking work of staggering genius ever seen on TV. Game Of Thrones, who cares? Kim Ki Duk and Jane Campion are both old favorites from film school and both have an amazing grasp of the medium and it's visual reach.


I have also completed a bunch of indoor chores, which makes me totally blissful. I've sorted sunflower seeds, dried apples with the wood stove and my new-to-me-dehydrator, started my sourdough rye back up again, made goat milk yogurt in my crockpot and sewed a very haphazard, but already beloved skirt from some fabric shipped over to me from a friend who's on top of my long list of calls to make and tea-invites to hand-out.


It's definitely medicine for my soul to just be at home, after what has been six months of madness really, planning projects and medicines and tossing around ideas in my head, which strangely feels as though it's filled with cotton wool...

I expect that the cold will clear out by tomorrow and I can resume writing something that requires more than a few sentences strung together. In the meantime, there's always rose hip tea, knitting and Don't Trust The Bitch In Apartment 23. 

Got cold cures? Good shows? Movies you've recently loved? No book recs, please, that would be teasing...

44 comments:

  1. Milla, you are pretty amazing. Love the skirt. I'm sure you've been using lemon for the cold, with honey. Need lemon every day. No recently loved movies, but some older ones. And, Homeland is starting again. It is very good. Still haven't gotten over Breaking Bad; I mean it's over and it was the best show on tv or movies I've ever seen. The 7 part Roosevelt series just ended on PBS. Very interesting people.

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    1. I really need to get on Breaking Bad, but am kind of scared it'll be too bumming (like Top Of The Lake wasn't). Maybe I'll be encouraged and just get on it. Thanks dear, <3

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  2. Your skirt is adorable, I'm glad you are having some joy in your resting. What do I watch? Brooklyn nine-nine is funny (well, to me) and um, Ridiculousness (I'm so embarrassed, it's one of those shows where adults fall of apparatus and skateboards and swingsets). I'm sorry you're sick though. Hope wellness finds you. xo

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    1. Okay, looking this stuff up stat, especially since my cold did not stick to its eta and skidaddle today. Sending you love!

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  3. Lemon, honey, homemade icecream with some baked apples with much cinnamon :)
    Hope you will get better soon!
    best wishes to you...

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    1. Thank you dear, homemade ice cream sounds divine, maybe when I get better. Take good care and happy fall!

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  4. Milla dear, I think you've been pretty efficient and productive under the circumstances! My own philosophy of being sick is : okay, my body is telling me "time to rest", therefore I do (while squash is happily baking).

    Apart from that, my recipe for helping my immune system doing its job is the "triple ginger cure" : I simmer a big chunk of grated ginger in a pan, then I filter it (and keep it for another batch) before putting back the infusion in the pan and adding powdered ginger, cardamom, cinnamon, allspice and pepper. When it boils again I turn down the heat and simmer for another 2 minutes. This can be poured on a tea bag, or any similar-tasting herbal tea. Add almond milk and honey before drinking.

    Last but not least, you skirt looks like it's been conjured right away from a painting by Gauguin. Or maybe Matisse. (Both of which I love, with a stronger fascination for Gauguin). Tu es délicieuse, chère Milla :o)

    Prends soin de toi
    xo

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    1. Oh, and it's called 'Triple ginger cure' because I also add *raw* grated ginger to my yogurt, vinaigrette, omelette, etc. Stringent, but efficient (a bit harsh if you have a sore throat though) and it warms up your body in a different way than when it's simmered. It's more stimulating somehow.

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    2. oh this sounds heavenly. I'm gonna give it a whirl, even if I'm not sick anymore. I love all things ginger, as you may know. Did you know you can grow it in a pot on a sunny spot in your house?!??! That's one of my projects for this spring. Wouldn't that be cool? Thanks for this recipe and for your everlasting kindness and sweetness. Sending you love, stay well!

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  5. Ah, Top of the Lake....
    That got me through the ups and downs of last autumn :)
    Otherwise when I'm fighting a cold, I arm myself with propolis three times a day and try to slip fresh ginger/garlic/piment/honey into everything we cook!

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    1. Charlie loves propolis too! It's one of the things I wish I could extract from my bees, if I wasn't neglecting all my bee chores all summer. I've only been in there twice and feel terrible. I don't extract honey yet, but if I will someday, the propolis would be a bonus. Hope you're well.

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  6. I really love your teapot, and I'm greatly admired at how productive you've been though you've got a cold!
    To try and cast my colds away I usually choose an infusion of lemon, honey, ginger and cloves, plus a few drops of propolis - sounds awful, I know, but in fact I find it pretty tasty, and very effective too! : )
    Hope you'll get better soon, anyway! xx

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    1. Thanks dear, I love my teapot too, but Charlie keeps trying to change it up for a more practical one. Practical?!!??!?! I think I'm just productive because my colds used to be totally dilapidating and pneumonia inducing so this feels easier.

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  7. Oh Milla, I love these house-bound photos! I hope you'll be better soon though! Tea is always a good idea when I have a cold, mostly ginger & lemon. For the rest, I try to inhale boiling water with a few drops of eucalyptus or tea tree essential oils. Wearing thick pajamas at night to sweat all the bad bugs out!

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    1. I am finally feeling better thank you, and I'm so with you on the wearing thick clothes and being really warm at night. One of my favorite rituals after I get better is changing all the sheets, cos to me that means that I am actually done being sick. Stay well darlin'.

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  9. I hope you feel better now. Usually I drink all sorts of teas when I am cold, keeps my hands and heart warm. the Fox and the Child is one of my favorite movies and so is Miss Potter and Bright Star too... I am not sure have you read the Snow Child? I do like so much your leather feathers and hope that someday you would offer them as a necklaces also. Embroidery is something which fascinates me at the moment, sewing by hand is one of my favorite things to do; connecting with the women who used to stitch their own clothes and knitting woolly things for the winter.

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    1. Oh I finally am. And thanks for reminding me of Bright Star. I love the film. I have not read the Snow Child. I'm so into embroidery too, but have WAY too many craft interests lately, I'm really looking forward to going to the yarn store next week on another island and hooking myself up (pun intended) with some woolen goodness. I dream of knitting some wool booty shorts of chilly cold days. Also, I'd always be happy to custom make you a necklace feather if you'd like. Take good care dear.

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    2. Välillä on ihan hassua etten kirjoittele sinulle Suomeksi :-D. Toivottavasti voit jo paremmin. Minun on aina todella vaikea pysytellä sisällä kun on kipeä, jokapäivä pitäisi mennä metsään tai luontoon. Joo, olisi ihanaa jos tekisit minulle kaulakorun. Voit vaikka kirjoitella minulle pinewoodshome@gmail.com.

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  10. That fabric is gorgeous! I hope your cold does indeed pass soon, that cotton-wool head sounds very familiar, although you sound pretty productive...

    Last week I watched The Hitch-Hiker, a thriller directed by Ida Lupino, being an ex-film student you've probably seen it. (It's billed as the first female-directed film noir, although a lot of it takes place in the desert so it doesn't look *that* dark and noirish) It's on archive.org if you haven't seen it -- or want to see it again! I tend to comfort-watch silly 1950s musicals when I'm feeling ill though :)

    And now I'm craving miso soup. *adds to shopping list*

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    1. Oh my gosh! I loved the Hitch Hiker when I was younger! When we first got a TV there was a lot of older movies in the afternoons and my mom would totally let me watch them, because she must have thought that older movies were somehow harmless. ;) I want to watch it again, I did reference Lupino in my BA thesis research, but don't think I actually rewatched any of her films. To do list, now. Thank you m'dear. I'm also really looking forward to introducing a young friend of mine to Fred and Ginger. Kids these days don't stand a chance to learn where it's at. Take good care dear <3

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  11. I have been so looking forward to the moment when i can come comment on your blog, with the combo of decent internet and a working keyboard on the ol' ipad. but instead of remarking on earth grief, yurts or writing habits, which was my plan, instead...let's talk netflix!

    but first, i didn't realize colds were contagious through the internet, as i've just gotten over my first of the season. i kicked it's but with fire cider, elderberry tea and syrup, thyme tea, and sitting under a bay laurel tree...which was actually the cure, i think.

    so since i still have brain depletion at the end of the day, due to mothering, i turn to netflix a lot. if you haven't watched "the source family" documentary yet, it's fantastic, as is "the institute" which takes place in my beloved former city home, with a lot of folks from an old community of mine. for series, i've been enjoying "longmire" which has gotten 5 stars from both mainstream culture AND the Native American community. "the killing" is very good, esp if you liked TOTL. and finally, "trailer park boys" just came out with season 8 after 5 years and it just might be the best yet.

    love you, i'm putting that soup recipe into an immediate file to make. your home and kitties and ever crafty heart are enchanting, as always. xoxo

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    1. Hey, you and me both, bud. I'm hoping that post led some people to your blog, because that's actually medicine for melancholy. That's what Demetria said about catching a cold right when I posted about it too!!! Scary…
      I tried long mire, but could not get into it, for some reason, but maybe I'll try it again with Charlie, he might be into it. I've totally watched all of the Killing and The Fall, which it TOTL is pretty funny trio of read-headed lady detectives and super bleakness. I haven't watched the last season of the Killing Yet tho, because frankly, I have a feeling it's gonna be hella depressing. Let's talks soon love, about the other stuff too...

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  12. Never heard of "Top of the Lake" must check it out. I think "Boobs and Blood", er, I mean "Game of Thrones" is a bit overrrated. I watched the show first and kinda wish I had just gone ahead and read the books beforehand. When I'm sick I revert to movies like "My Neighbor Totoro" or the Rankin Bass animated "The Hobbit."
    Hope you are feeling better--you had a super busy summer and your body is probably just saying, slow down a bit! Take care :)

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    1. Hahahahahah! Boobs and Blood! The best! Hahahhaha! No seriously, I'm laughing out loud!!! I just find it endlessly amusing that shit that nerd girls like me thought was cool in fifth grade is somehow now a major and acceptable popular culture phenomenon. I've read three of the books during train trips. They're pretty, how do I not stoop to saying "stupid"…genre specific, filled with every cliche of the genre, even if some of the plot twists are innovative and the writing is not the worst ever for that genre. Also the whole enterprise has absolutely no message beyond that people suck and power corrupts. I mean it's entertaining, but emotionally totally hollow. Enough about me Totoro and Howl's Moving Castle are totally on my list of things to watch but there's smarter things that are entertaining. Each to their own tho. Love Miyazaki for comfort and slight intellectual discomfort! Thank you so much and you take care of yourself too dear. See you in Portland ;)

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  13. Toivottavasti siellä voidaan jo paremmin...! Taisi jonkun kroppa kertoa että on ehkä aika hieman koteloitua ja hissutella kotosalla :)... Top of the lake oli oikeastaan viimeinen tv-sarja jonka katsoin ennenkuin tv lähti, ja mieluusti katsoinkin. Muuten olen kyllä sitten aivan täysin kuutamolla kaiken tv-sarja ym tarjonnan suhteen.. Brideshead revisited on kyllä sellainen jonka voin katsoa uudestaan loputtoman monta kertaa. Hauska että mainitsit Kim Ki Dukin, kun täällä sitä ei ehkä kovin moni tiedä (?).. Muistan aina kun kävin katsomassa rautakolmosen ja olin aivan ymmyrkäisenä siitä elokuvasta, siitä miten hieno se oli.
    Mä olen visuaalisesti, ja mielikuvituksessani hiukka yliherkkä, ja oonkin huomannut että ilman tv:tä eläminen on mulle parempi - niin hieno kuin esim Top of the lake olikin, niin se tuli mun uniin ja ihon alle vähän liian vahvasti, kun katsoin aina juuri ennen nukkumaanmenoa.
    Mun listalla flunssantorjunnassa on aika samat kuin sullakin; ruusunmarjatee, hunaja, villasukat... En tosin ole ollut yli kahteen vuoteen kipeä, että pistää miettimään kuinka kauan sitä voi vielä jatkua..:). Voi hyvin, ja älä ala liian aikaisin "riehumaan" siellä ulkosalla ;).

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    1. Oi, oispa mullakin rautainen vastustuskyky. Nyt viime vuoden aikana kaikki kipeydet on olleet tosi tosi pienia, tamakin, vaikka pitkaan kesti niin oli enemman semmonen etta jotain pysty tekemaankin ja totenkin olemaankin. Ja kylla, hissutella pitaa aina, mutta valilla ottaa kylla paahan se, miten vaikka mina en tosiaankaan millaan mittarilla oo mikaan suorituskuningatar, niin pienestakin stressista heti mennaan ketoon. Vaikeeta, taa herkkien elama ;) Rautakolmonen! Mulla kanssa, oi heti aattelen ja haaveilen etta ollaan oltu samassa naytoksessa, metrien paassa toisistamme. Ja Brideshead, siis se Jeremy Irons versio tietty. Samat aivot…pida ystava kulta omasi vapaana flunssasta <3

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  14. You've got to be the most productive sick person in history! So many projects! I tend to live on toast and applesauce when I'm sick, you eat a lot better then than I do haha... I recently watched The Secret Life of Walter Mitty on Netflix and absolutely loved it, you might like it too I think :)

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    1. Oh my gosh! Just sent Charlie to the store on his way to town to get me toast. I really crave carbs when I'm sick, I wonder what that is. Like I say below, in the name of full disclosure I have to add that I do spend a lot of time in bed and I was feeling really motivated after all the non-home time I've had lately. Stay well dear!

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  15. These pictures are really pretty and I'm making that miso soup...dang does it look tasty!

    I enjoyed Tiny. I'm finally watching season 2 of Downton Abbey! It's such a great show. I hope you are well today :) Sending hugs!

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    1. I haven't gotten onto to Downtown Abbey yet either, I'm sure Charlie would HATE it, so maybe now's my chance, hahah!

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  16. Even when you're sick everything looks rustic and pretty! My sick pictures are usually of a remote, a knit Grandma blanket, a cat and cough drops.

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    1. Okay, full disclosure: I was so mad at being sick that after the first two days of just napping, I forced myself to do stuff! And then I got sicker. It's just that I've been jonesing for so long to do all these wonderful fall things and I have time off and now I"m sick. Reason be damned I wanted to do stuff. Believe me when I say that there's plenty of soggy kerchiefs and have drunken teacups around and the bedroom looks like bomb went off at least twice ;)

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  17. You have some mad homesteading skillz (with a z), lady! And all that while battling a cold - you are awesome! Hope you feel better soon!

    M.

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    1. Lolz, thanks dear, but we all do. We all have mad skillz! I've been so motivated lately, just 'cos it's basically been two whole months with almost no sometime for me. This year, it really kicked me in the ballz ;)

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  18. Sisko ehti jo suositella Brideshead Revisitediä. Se on kyllä hieno ja sopii kipeyspäiviin. Mä en ole nähnyt Top of the Lakea, harmittaa. Mutta ehtiihän sitä. Meillä katotaan edelleen X-Filesia, ollaan jo kutoskaudessa. Ah, nostalgiaa, Mulder & Scully. Ei ole parempaa. :) Pikaista paranemista!

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    1. x-files on paras! oikeestaan ottaa paahan etta katottiin se jo, koska ei voida kattoa uudestaan. niin hyva sarja, nauttikee!

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  19. It pleases me, seeing the way you live, Milla. If only I could live so cozy and self sufficient! I suppose I could, but you've really got the knack! Just seeing your stove warms me. And the deliciousness of your grub simmering away and the tea kettles and tea!
    Such a cottage for a homemade princess, truly you are!
    Anything Ken Burns! We are also watching two series: Outlander & The White Queen. Both intriguing and entertaining!

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  20. oh my gosh that food looks amazing! i just got knocked down with a cold, too. ugh. my neighbor came over and made me drink a powerful shot of Grapefruit Seed Extract in water. blegh! It was probably good, though. I've heard Intouchables is a great film, it's on my list to watch.

    XOXO

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  21. You're probably better now, but watch True Detective.

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  22. Milla, reading your blog is like food for my soul. You've such a gift for writing! I'm afraid I don't have anything to recommend at the moment. I'm so buried in unpacking our new/old house and trying to make it feel like *home*. Maybe that's why I love your blog so - it gives me quiet. :)
    On another note, I adore that fabric! If you have any scraps, or happen to know the name of it's maker/pattern, although I'm sure it's vintage, I'd gladly take it off your hands :)

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    1. Oh no sweets, I may have forgotten to mention, but it is Tobie, by Phoebe Wahl (the bigger style) and totally available on Spoon flower. I love it.

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  23. Look at your pictures! That one of the stove is so beautiful! And ah I'm still enduring the last of my cold over here. I've found steamers with a couple drops of essential oil have helped with the congestion.
    <3 ahh it's so good to comment after having finally met you in the real world

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  24. I was so impressed by Top Of The Lake! Couldn't get it out of my head for weeks. Made me think about so many things, especially because of the juxtaposition of natural beauty and human ugliness. I've been in the area where the series was set, which made for an interesting extra layer for me. Being there, one would never expect something like that to go down, but where there's people, there's all sorts of complicated feelings and (inter)actions.
    Anyway, I trust by now you're feeling better and maybe not so much in need of cures or series anymore, but we're watching Fargo at the moment (the series based on the movie) and I'm intrigued by it. Maybe put it on your list for when the next cold hits?

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