You are someone:

Looking to buy a vacuum. Or Yogurt. Maybe some Chicken Feet? Perhaps you like Gus the Pennsylvania Lottery Mascot. You’re a Sunday driver. Or you’ve been bitten by a deer tick.  You shun fake tan, dog clothes, ass shorts, and/or dolls named Cloe. You have 18 year old towels. You ride your bike on the sidewalk – or conversely, want to round up all sidewalk riders and place them in internment camps. You let your dog poop in the woods and like camping. YOU LOVE EASTENDERS! You enjoy nature and photography. And think Red Vines are the worst candy ever. You live in an old house. Or an older one still, and your backyard is full of wild turkeys. You hate cleaning.  You’ve won money gambling. You quit smoking. You lost your hamster and then found it, or you’re looking to get rid of dead mouse smell. You’ve done the craziest things ever for the love of pets because you’re a crazy cat lady at heart. You think the way someone drives speaks volumes. You love being a momma and your friend is about to give birth at home. You’re wild about Valentine’s Day. You’re learning how to sew. You must be from Philly because you NEVER get your mail. You’re “From Away.” Or maybe just a Scholfield? You really wanna be a Roller Girl. You’ve finally succumbed to Facebook. And you just found an x-rated animal cracker while watching TV with your kids.

Or, maybe that’s just me?

However you got here. Welcome to The Daily Dish.

This is my life. Round past bedtime at the Best Buy kind of life. This is me, in all my unglory. A former Philadelphian turned Mainer, who can’t figure out why she can’t be a paid spokesperson. A woman who feels guilty throwing away perfectly good underwear, who thinks her feet are the most underrated appendages on her body. Someone plagued with a freaky ear disease who runs a low sodium recipe website. An unapologetic and unabashed optimist, who is grateful above all else for my family, my health, and my sense of humor. Who has found a world of acceptance and friendship simply by opening up through a blog.

However you got here. Thank you for being a part of The Daily Dish.

36 thoughts on “WHO ARE YOU?

  1. I’m glad to know you. Welcome to the neighborhood of Mainiacs, which is what I proudly told ‘folks from away’ I was before the new term Maine-ah came into use. As far as I’m concerned, you and yours fit in very well. We Mainiacs are anally independent, sometimes to spite the nose on our face. You guys are doing a wonderful job making the old house your own. Now take the time to feel its love for you. Kate

    1. Thank you Kate. You always say the nicest things. We are loving our new lives here, especially our new (olde) house. Being From Away can be hard sometimes, but it’s wonderful knowing we’re accepted by some. Who knows. Perhaps one day, two hundred years from now, my children’s children’s children’s children will be considered natives. Nah… LOL

  2. 1/5/10-I read you plea for a job last night. That got me thinking about the perfect job for you. You would not be happy working for someone, as you have been independent for so long.
    I feel you should write a book about how to manuver through life on a shoestring. Granted the main reason I have become obscessed with your blog is to see pictures of home, but the other reasons are to see the wonderful colorful clothing your children are dressed in, the colorful home decor that you display, and to see all of the adventures you have taken. The weekend after you signed on the house, you took time off to go to the beach. In the various pictures that you have shot since coming to Maine, it seems as though you have found many entertaining opportunities. Perhaps your family has a wonderful savings plan, but I am anxious to find out how you are able to afford all of the sightseeing you all have done, all of the renovations you have been able to do on the house, and how you found out about CSAs. I would love to know your economic secrets AND yours and John’s philosophy in raising the girls. It seems as though you two have really given
    them so many great chances to explore the world around them. Perhaps you think that your lives are ordinary, but believe me, they are so interesting. Also, I am very impressed with your curiosity. Remember when I first responded to your blog? It was in response to the number of chiropractor offices on Congress Street. In all the years in Portland, I never noticed that. That is what I am talking about. In the very short time you have been in Maine, you have found most interesting entertainment for the family. Could you write about your thoughts as to what you did to find out the goings on in the Greater Portland area? Can you explain how you got into buying into the farming industry and what you have done with the abundance of fresh vegetables and other foods? Can you explain where your colorful sense of decor comes from?
    I realize this sounds like rambling, and I wish I could nail on the head what I am feeling. I just feel you have so many valuable assets that you could write a handbook on how people can live the dream while enjoying all that is available in our local communities. I wish you all the best. Keep the book in mind. Abbie

    1. Abbie, this is truly one of the loveliest things anyone has ever written to me. Thank you. But before I respond, I must tell you. My mom has read your comment and has reminded me that she has said THE SAME EXACT THING TO ME MANY TIMES. So, I suppose, many thanks to you BOTH. Hah!

      I can only say I am honored to be the subject of such fascination. I certainly do not feel particularly interesting. Most of the time, I am just a woman doing her best to keep it together. I struggle day to day w/ a chronic illness that has no rhyme or reason. Mostly I try to laugh at life. Humor is the best medicine, bar none.

      As for your suggestion about a book. I’ve not had luck finding employment otherwise. The economy is so bad.. and I do agree I am happiest when in control of my time. I have so little control over other aspects of my life. I will keep you posted on what I decide. Thank you for your continued encouragement! It means so much. Christy

    1. Sue,
      If you’ve recently been diagnosed and are trying to come to grips w/ how Meniere’s will affect you professionally, only time will tell. Living with a chronic illness like this is a challenge. Some days are great, you feel completely normal – others you’re incapacitated. But that’s the way w/ life. People get colds, they break bones. You can’t always bank on perfect health even if you’re “normal.” As long as you’re feeling up to it, work. There will be days when you simply can’t – as long as your employer understands and is prepared for that, you’ll be fine. Take care, Christy

  3. Just came across your site, searching for “stacking wood pile” just to snoop on people’s creative ways of stacking wood, a mundane but necessary chore now and then, but does it have to be boring? Sorry to hear about your “disease” but seems like you are dealing well. Glad to hear you quite smoking, I did too 3 plus year ago, after 19.5 years of rolling my own. Couldn’t go twenty, just couldn’t. I like to say that if I can do it, anybody can, cause I love tobacco, just simply love it. Would love to have a pipe load right this second. But I’ve vowed.
    I was just in Portland Maine not long ago, visiting my girlfriend’s family. We live in Palmer Alaska. Driving around in Portland was a bit intimidating, but we finally settled in our little expensive parking lot on the waterfront, and proceeded by foot to really dig Portland. Ate at Local 188. Very expensive, but top notch food. Where’s your wine list? I use Snooth.com to record my wine experiences. I now drink a lot of Black box because no one will recycle glass around here, and it pisses me off to no end to throw away bottles. Enough! You are very attractive and personable too, husband and family are very lucky to have you as mom and partner (I hope they remind you often).

    1. Hi Thomas — thanks for the comment! You can see all the wines I’ve blogged about by typing “wine” into the search box or clicking “wine” in the category cloud above. I have tried black diamond – it’s good; I also recommend the Octavin 8 sided box wines — I’ve tried several, all very solid. Just checked out your blog. Great photo of the moose! When we moved to Maine, I thought surely I’d see one.. so far, nope. But I did catch a recent TV program on the damage a moose can do to a car (and the humans inside) if you accidentally hit one. Now I am quite content enjoying them from afar. Glad you & your girlfriend enjoyed Portland. We’ve driven by Local 188 many times and it looks like a lovely place. I will remind my family to cherish me extra — though they already treat me like a queen! Thanks again for your kind comments.

  4. I can’t believe what a brilliant index system you’ve invented here. It appears to lead your reader to everything that you’ve written. Thinks -‘ Hmmm maybe I can do an angle on this myself.’

  5. Someone just mentioned a blog called The Daily Dish on another end of cyberspace. It was something to do with Mexico where I live. I Googled Daily Dish to find that blog and discovered there are a number of Daily Dishes. As I moved down the list in my ultimately unsuccessful search for the Daily Dish in question, I found yours. You seem quite unusual. I send a hi. Nothing more.

    1. Hi back ‘atcha, Felipe! Thanks for leaving a calling card; always so nice when visitors have the time & inclination. Just stopped by your neck of the woods –your blog looks like a sumptuous feast of color and interest. Such beautiful pix! I’ll have to check it out more thoroughly later. Till then, take care and soak up some sun for me. 🙂

  6. loved your blog.Im on a low salt diet as well for medical reasons. and eager to try some of your recipes.please dont stop the blog! Im learning to cook in order to eat health. so ill enjoy learning from your tips on low salt diet!

    1. Vida, don’t you worry — The Daily Dish isn’t going anywhere! I’m so glad you like the site and truly hope you find some recipes you’ll enjoy for many, many years to come. We may be suffering, but together we’re stronger. Wishing you much health & happiness.

  7. Thanks for this excellent blog! I’m a mother of two (6 and 8) and was diagnosed with Menieres this summer. I’ve always been healthy – eating well, running, doing everything right – so I was pretty pissed when I first got the word from my awesome ENT. I’ve always been fiercely independent and stubborn to a fault, so I decided I would refuse to let Menieres get me down. I went on the low sodium (<1000mg/day) diet and have never looked back. That change made a huge difference and I'm pretty symptom-free with the exception of weather changes…isn't it just ducky being a "human barometer"?

    Like you, I have good days and bad days, but I temper them with the realization that Menieres won't kill me. I try and view it as a mixed blessing – that hey, I'm probably the healthiest person on the block, what with my whole foods, low-sodium lifestyle. But I miss wine, and salty comfort foods from my youth. However, nothing I eat or drink is worth having my two kids fearfully watch as their mother has a vertigo attack, throwing up for hours, unable to eat, drink, or interact with them. So I manage this damn thing for me, for them, for my husband, for the career I want to have, for a normal life I expect to live for the next 40 years (God willing).

    Keep the posts and recipes coming. In the meantime you've got a follower in Virginia who's thankful for you sharing your story and ideas with the rest of us.

    1. Uuugh Karen, being a human barometer is NO FUN AT ALL. You sound like me – stubborn & determined. GOOD! That should help you cope w/ Meniere’s all the better. You can’t wish the disease away, but if you stick to the diet, avoid stress and get enough rest, you can make life a whole lot easier & more pleasant. I’m so sorry you’ve had to give up wine. I stopped drinking after being diagnosed, but it was my physician (primary care) in Philly who actually recommended I try having a glass a day. It seems to help but there are many people who cannot drink alcohol any longer. I stick to water otherwise, occasionally a glass of juice. But I’ve given up coffee and tea, and rarely if ever drink soda (I just don’t like it). The little bit of caffeine I ever get is from chocolate, but I don’t gorge on that either. FUN!

      I am so glad you found me. Strength in numbers, right? Right! 🙂

  8. “An unapologetic and unabashed wino, wife and mother, who is grateful above all else for my family, my health, and my sense of humor. Who has found a world of acceptance and friendship simply by opening up through a blog.”
    What thing that draw me to your blog is because you are “real” and “genuine” in every way. You have a generous heart and a optimistic spirit. You are always open for fun and adventure that brings wonderful memories to your family. It is great to see another blogger celebrating life to the fullest and bringing inspiration to those around her. We are blessed to come to know you. Best wishes to you and your family.

  9. yay! I’m excited about your blog! I have just been diagnosed with Meniere’s Disease and I’m trying to figure out how to cook low sodium! yay! (yay about the food, not about Meniere’s Disease… NO FUN!) 🙂 You rOCK!

    1. Hey Andrea,

      Sorry I’m s-o-o-o-o slow w/ these comments! Horrible to hear you’ve got the plague too, but so glad to be of help. I really hope the low-sodium diet is helping. Be sure to keep checking the site for recipes. And feel free to email anytime!

      Best wishes, Christy

  10. Hi Christy,

    On December 31st at 3:30am it sounded like explosions were going off in my head. I sat up in bed and thought we were under attack. I looked over at my wife and she was sound asleep. I thought, ‘If she can’t hear this…then it must be inside my head.’ Not wanting to call 911, i called the 24-hour nurse that I have through my work insurance and she suggested I go to urgent care. So…I went to urgent care and the doc there said I wasn’t having a stroke, and I was ‘fine’. He said I needed to go to my primary care doc for an MRI. So…a few days later I got my MRI to see if I had a tumor (talk about a horrible weekend waiting for the MRI results) and they said I was tumor-free. So, my doc sent me to an EN&T specialist and he did the audiogram and said I have ‘moderate to severe’ hearing loss in my left ear and said I have Meniere’s Disease. Right now the vertigo I have is mild. It feels like I’ve had a few drinks. I just kind of sway back and forth. If I stand up and close my eyes I almost fall over–but if I’m moving I’m okay. Very, very strange. It’s nice to know that I’m not alone and that things might get better. Hoping the low-sodium diet will quiet the shriek inside my head. One thing that freaks me out is that occasionally it sounds like coins falling out of a slot machine. Watching TV and listening to the radio is difficult as well–as certain sounds totally reverberate inside my head.

    Sorry I rambled on so much. Keep up the great work!


    1. Greg, don’t sweat the rambling. Your story sounds remarkably similar to my own. The constant noise, the reverberating piercing noise, the deafness. I so feel for you. I dealt with that for months and months before getting a proper diagnosis. Every morning I would wake feeling that same way, teetering on the edge, almost ready to fall. Life was hell. Giving up salt gave me my life back. Cut it out as much as you can, now. I went cold turkey, got down to no salt added to any food, no processed food, and within days my ear started reacting. My symptoms began to recede. Within weeks I was feeling fairly normal again. Within a month I could hear out of my right ear. I wish you all the very best.

  11. Christy,
    I really appreciate your website with all of the great recipes. I was somewhat devastated for a few days after getting diagnosed and having to start the low sodium diet. Thankfully, I found two websites (yours and one other) that showed me I could still eat well, just different. It’s still a drag on days when I get home from 10-14 hours of work and can’t just throw a frozen meal in the oven for my husband and me to eat, but it isn’t as terrible as I originally expected, just inconvenient.

    My first attack of Meniere’s started on the last day of my deployment to Southwest Asia. I thought I was just dehydrated, hungry, and exhausted; I was all 3, but it was something more, and it kept coming back as I started my journey home. I feel incredibly fortunate that it only took 3 months of daily episodes to get the Meniere’s diagnosis. I’m obviously not thrilled with having the disease, especially at age 26, but at least I now know what it is. The doc says I have a reasonably mild case compared to some of his patients, but when I’m dizzy and my ear feels like it is about to explode, that isn’t much comfort. The low sodium hasn’t had quite as dramatic of an effect as you mentioned, but it has helped (episodes 2-3 times a week instead of every day). Most of the meds I’ve tried give me worse side effects than the Meniere’s, but I’ve found that the Scopolamine patch helps some, and I can tolerate the dry mouth, dilated eyes, and blurry vision. Together with the low sodium diet, I’ve had great weeks where I only experienced one mild attack. Of course, there have been bad weeks, but I’ll take the bad with the good. My friends nicknamed me Weeble, which helps keep the situation light, not depressing.

    Thanks again for your website! My husband and I have loved most of the recipes we’ve tried (he still adds salt, but I barely notice anymore). Not only is it nice to have recipes I can rely on, but it’s also good to read about other people with this plague who are more than just coping with it. I’m trying new things all the time to keep living a full life, trying not to let Meniere’s win the war despite the battles it frequently wins.

    1. WOW. Andrea, I read this last night and was blown away. Cannot imagine trying to cope w/ Meniere’s in the military. You are one strong-willed weeble!

      I was diagnosed at 31 – not nearly as young as you, but I can totally relate to the “WHAT?!” feeling. When a disease like this comes out of the blue, and at the “prime” of your life, it especially sucks. But you know what? You’re going to be fine. You’re doing everything you need to, to ensure you’re at your best. Just keep focusing on that – the positive – and when you get the bad day/s, remind yourself it’s not forever. Meniere’s may not go away, but the episodes are finite. You will have great days for the rest of your life!

      SO glad you found the site and are having such success w/ the recipes. Hearing from you makes it all worthwhile.


  12. I came across your site looking for ideas for V-day. I found two that were really helpful, thank you! Instead of going back to my google search I decided to read the about me page and things that you want page. you are so funny and witty i’m jealous! lol. thank you for being so positive. its rare and usually people are so depressed or into themselves they dont even consider being positive about anything an option. i dont have this disease that you have however i am trying to get my family healthier and i intend to check out your recipies. thank you for shining your light in this dark world. have a most blessed and beautiful year!!

    1. Cabrina,

      Your comment made my day. Seriously! I read it as soon as I got downstairs and it was an automatic attitude adjustment. My ear’s been bugging me, I woke up feeling surly and POOF! All better.

      Thank you, truly, for taking the time to share with me. For making me feel real and happy again. I do my best to help others – to be their Cabrina. Thank you for being mine.


  13. I think I posted in the wrong spot earlier…. Ahh well. My name is Paul and I’m 34 year old neuro RN. I was first diagnosed with MD 3 years ago this month. Symptoms came on fast and I too ran through the gauntlet of doctors before seeing my life saving ENT. He gave me a proper diagnosis after a series of tests. No MRI though… I’m pretty sure it’s MD and not a tumor otherwise I’m guessing that it would be the size of a softball after being in my head for 3 yrs. 3 months after the diagnosis, I was able to go to the gym and reduce my stress further. The next 2 months, I was able to have an occasional drink. Slowly over time I forgot about it and worst of the symptoms was a rare off balance situation which lasted seconds… which I could walk it off. I was able to drive for long periods of time without having major repercussion. Living life to the fullest. Although my hearing never really came back. The tinnitus was constant but the ear pressure subsided.

    Well time and bad behavior got the best of me again. I started having bad episodes again this last month. I put myself on some low dose diuretics to help reduce the sodium a little faster. I remember that the vertigo spells I have now aren’t even close to the same feeling I had when I was first diagnosed… thats a relief. During the dark days, my worst episode was hours of the worst tilta whirl ride I’ve ever experienced. I also moved a half hour away from work so I plan on temporarily moving back in with my little sister to cut the commute… at least during my work days.

    Lastly there is one person I need to thank. My fiance, who stuck with me through the diagnosis, is the light of my life. I’m getting married next September and looking forward the years to come.

    1. Hi Paul! So sorry to hear you’re having symptoms again, but glad to hear you’re doing your best to get better. Keep up the good work. And congrats on your engagement! Sounds like you have a fabulous partner to keep you moving forward. Best wishes to you both! Christy

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