Making Things Easier
Cooking in bulk
On good days I tend to cook in bulk. For example, I can mash potato and swede and then freeze it. The swede (rutabaga) I actually buy frozen (ready peeled and diced). I make a large pot of bolognese (with everything thrown in), chopped peppers, onion, mushrooms, sweetcorn, and carrots with tinned chopped tomatoes and oxo. All of this equals 5 takeout containers. When you think how long you spend peeling carrots, swede, potatoes sprouts, cauliflower, cabbage, and then chopping them all, time can be saved. This way on my bad days I don't have to worry about cooking. The same goes for stews and casseroles, though I do buy the bags of frozen veg.
Holidays and support
As Christmas approaches, I love cooking a Christmas dinner, though both my husband and myself are not keen on turkey so we have beef. I find it so much easier to use frozen vegetables (cheaper and doesn't go bad plus just as healthy). Plus you're saving energy not standing or sitting peeling vegetables. Your saved energy can be used to do something else. I'm lucky as I have good support from my husband (he does the dishes and shopping).
Here in the UK we don't have Thanksgiving but concentrate on Christmas. It can become pretty stressful, but now I'm at the stage of no worries, it will come and go like every year. Having COPD does limit you, that's why it is so important to learn to pace yourself and make things as easy as possible.
Asking for help
We need to know what we can and cannot do and ask for the help we all need at times. There is nothing wrong with asking for help. If you don't ask, others will not know you can't manage something. Getting stressed is one of the biggest problems that will cause a flare-up (exacerbation) of COPD and that is something we all need to avoid as much as possible. We need to remember that we have to make our lives as easy and as stress-free as possible so we can stay well and live a good meaningful life whilst still enjoying it.
Challenges and more tips
That doesn't mean we can't have a challenge though! Any challenge will make us that much stronger mentally as well as physically. We need to remember we can only do what we can do and ask for help when we need it. Make things easier - you can save that energy and use it elsewhere, like with family and friends. This will help keep you well and healthy to enjoy your life to the fullest without the stress of wondering if you'll be well enough to do this or that.
I'm all for saving time, energy, and money by making things easier. By evening time I'm pretty tired, so I also tend to cook in the morning and then warm it up later when we're ready to eat. That way I'm not in the kitchen cooking in the evening. If I did I wouldn't be able to eat it. I hope these tips I use will help you too.
Editor's Note: We are heartbroken to share that Debz passed away in October of 2021. She is deeply missed but her positivity and resilience live on through her articles. Thank you for everything, Debz.
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