chronic illness

What Is In Your Flare Survival Kit?

Flare Survival Kit

When I was discharged from the hospital last week, I went into a huge fibro flare. It wasn’t the typical joint pain flare but the hypersensitivity to touch and sound, the feeling of “restless body syndrome,” the muscle aches, the whole shebang. My mom actually laughed as I started pulling out my flare survival kit as here it was the end of July and I was pulling out a hoodie, my heated snuggie, and an ice pack. Its crazy the things that can provide relief in the midst of a flare. Also included in my survival kit are my Acer tablet, Netflix, yoga pants, a word find book, pain meds, and Coke!

So I got to thinking, I wonder what my other spoonie friends have in their survival kits? I asked on Facebook and here are some of the responses I got:

Cheryl said:

my teddy bear…it may sound silly, but sometimes you just need something to squeeze!

CC said:

chocolate, heating pad or heated blanket, Netflix, & a knitting project!

Heather said:

Heating pad, anti-diarrhea pills, a few good books, crackers, & pain pills

Mamie said:

iPad, soft blanket, oversized pants, & pain meds

Life Happens said:

phone, comfy loose-fitting tshirt-style gown (no waistbands or elastics of any kind), pillow (for inbetween my legs), pain pills, dulcolax, bubba keg of ice-water, heating pad, HuluPlus, and comfort-food.

Rebecca said: Fibro flare survival kit for me includes pain pills, a heating pad, some kind of comfort food, a book or two, my bed and my cat.

To Do List for Surviving a Flare


What is in your Flare Survival Kit?


P.S. Be a spoonie girl scout & check out the Hospital Survival Kit &  Bowel Prep Survival Kit to be prepared for what else life with chronic illness may have in store!


Saving Spoons: Overcoming the Morning Scramble

I know I’m not the only one running out the door at the very last second praying that there isn’t a huge drop-off line at daycare or that no one will notice if my voicemail turns off at 8:05 versus 8:00 once I arrive at work. As much as I want to, lately I just cannot seem to get it together in the mornings. I spend every spare minute in bed (my joints are ready for the chilly winter mornings to go away) which leaves me rushing to get myself ready, Abby ready for daycare, and keep the dogs from driving me batty. This of course can be avoided if 1) I actually get out of bed when my alarm goes off and/or 2) Plan the night before to keep the morning routine as simple and stress-free as possible. Planning the night before could involve laying out my clothes for work (which includes ironing), laying out Abby’s clothes, and making sure her daycare bag is ready to go. Sounds simple enough right? So why can’t I get it together?

So I have searched the interwebs and come across these wonderful posts from moms (including spoonie moms) that share awesome time saving tricks so that you can actually leave the house with a smile instead of a frenzy!

Organizing Children’s Morning Routines When You’re Ill by Lisa Copen

Conquering Morning Chaos by The Practical Mom Guide



Saving Spoons: Super Easy Crockpot Chicken

I know that I said that the sweet & spicy chicken was the easiest recipe known to man but this one runs thisclose to being as easy AND as delicious!

The first time I ever tried cooking a whole chicken, it turned out something like this:

 photo 5651642_std_zps9dc3a4d7.jpg

Seriously. It was like a scene out of National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation. John & I had just gotten engaged so I wanted to prove that I was a good cook. Major fail. I cried. The dog wouldn’t even go near it! So ever since, I’ve been terrified to try to bake a whole chicken until I found this recipe – Baked Slow Cooker Chicken.

It was the easiest thing I’ve ever made! First, I added a couple handfuls of baby carrots and 3 peeled and diced potatoes to the bottom of the crock pot. Then I placed a 4lb whole chicken (after it had been cleaned out) on top. I added sea salt and pepper (separated the skin from the breast and seasoned between the two) and that was it! It cooked on low for 9 hours while I was at work!

When I got home dinner was ready! The carrots and potatoes were perfectly flavored from the chicken stock and the chicken was so tender it literally fell off the bone! It was so good! What makes it better was that it was a healthy meal (no added oil or butter!) and gluten-free! It was highly approved by the husband and the toddler! Dinner that looked like this was a much better outcome:

crockpot chicken


So you can now add another chicken recipe to your Spoon-friendly file!