Soup and Solitude

May 24, 2014 | My Jottings

Yesterday I had two hours to myself, the first time in a while. Michael’s home health aide Paul came from 3:30 to 5:30, and after turning off the cauliflower soup I had just simmered on the stove, I kissed Michael goodbye, thanked Paul, and set off.

I drove straight to Hawk’s Ridge, which is a high stretch of road in our city that overlooks Lake Superior and gives one a view all the way to the south shore of Wisconsin. I love to visit Hawk’s Ridge in the fall because the tree colors are brilliant against the deep blue of our Lake. Even though the trees are barely budding because our spring is so late, the view was still magnificent. I never get tired of it.

I opened the sun roof in the car, cracked the windows, reclined the seat a bit, and just breathed. Blessed solitude. It was a lovely warmish day after an unbelievably long and cold winter. I took a book to read but never opened it. I just sat and gazed at the blue of our massive, weather-controlling Great Lake, and then closed my eyes as the sun warmed my skin. I could easily have dozed.


After an hour of this precious quiet and beauty I drove to a grocery store to get milk, peanuts in the shell, cottage cheese, bananas, and dense, crusty bread, the latter to go with the Pioneer Woman’s Cauliflower Soup I had started earlier in the day.

When I returned home at 5:15 I carried in the groceries and was so happy to see that Paul had helped Michael shower and my husband was resting peacefully in his recliner watching “Bonanza.” I turned on the burner under the soup again and prepared the roux to add at the last to thicken it up. Soup, salad and bread — I could practically live on that meal. The recipe was a hit with all eaters, and I will make it again — have you made it yet? Scrumptious.


I made enough to serve for dinner tonight too. I think soup and anything saucy always tastes better the second day, and then I get the treat of waking up in the morning and knowing dinner is already made.

A few days ago Michael asked me to take him out for lunch at our favorite Mexican restaurant. I was hesitant, since getting down the basement stairs and into the garage can be treacherous for him, but he seemed strong and I didn’t want to disappoint him. We sit in the house a lot. Parkinson’s Disease is isolating like that. I used the gait belt on him and had no trouble getting him slowly downstairs and into the car. Going into the restaurant went pretty well too. After our good meal we drove through the nearby Dairy Queen to get him a soft serve cone dipped in chocolate. I could tell he was so happy to be outside and driving around in such beautiful, gentle spring weather. By the time we got home he was very tired, and getting him upstairs was not without mishap. He lost his balance and fell against the garage wall near the door, but since I had a hold of the belt he wasn’t badly hurt. It’s still stressful to fall though, and I could tell by the pounding of his heart that he was shaken up. We labored a long time to get upstairs, and when I had him safely reclining in his living room chair I cleaned up the small scrape on his forearm. In seconds he was sound asleep.

We have some options that I’m considering. Should we build a ramp in our front yard so we can use the wheelchair to get him outside that way? Should we have an estimate on one of those indoor seat lifts that carries a person up and down the stairs? Personally, I’d love a people shute similar to the ones they use at banks to get one’s deposit slips from the drive up station to the smiling teller behind the window.

This weekend we’ll be staying in, maybe watching the shipping traffic on the Lake we’re so close to, maybe turning on an episode or two of “All Creatures Great and Small.” I might tackle some paperwork and I also have big plans to clean the filters in my vacuum. 🙂 I hope to get some serious reading in.

What are you doing this weekend? If you’re reading a good book right now, will you share which one it is?

Happy spring to you,


  1. Su Lee says:

    Reading “To Fly Again: Surviving the Tailspins of Life” by Gracia Burnham – I am reading this again because I need a reminder lately that my trials and sufferings are nothing compared to what so many others are suffering and have suffered. John 16:33 needs to be branded on my heart because I forget so easily what Jesus promised.

  2. Just Julie says:

    I love Gracia Burnham — I think I’ll put this on my list, Su. I too easily forget John 16:33 too. Or at least want to believe Jesus was talking to someone other than me. 🙂 xoxo

  3. Larry says:

    Hello Sis:

    not about a book, but about your thoughts ealier, the moving chair up the steps is still something that you would have to walk up the stairs with him, where as the sloped ramp out front might be easier for you and him? Juat a comment. The two books I am currently reading are “The Names of God” by George W. Knight and I love it because it is fully illustrated and I use it for some of my teachings. the second one I just started is “Restoring Spiritual Vision” by Kelly McDonald Jr. The later is by a local publisher located in Jackson TN called Allegra Print and the author is a friend of mine that is very much talented in drawing out from the Word truths that few others see.

  4. Just Julie says:

    I’ll have to check that first book out Larry. Thank you for telling me about them! xoxo

  5. Ember says:

    Well done for managing that outing! xx

  6. Just Julie says:

    xoxo 🙂

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