Button, button

I get these little rubber  buttons from the Lilac Services for the Blind.  They’re such a small item,  but it's amazing how valuable they have become to me.

My computer keyboard has become completely redundant for typing.  I am totally dependent on text reader and dictation features.  Both of these require keyboard commands that consist of combinations of two or three keys.  For example, Microsoft Word text reader

requires control + alt + space to start reading.     Microsoft Narrator requires cap lock + r for continuous reading. There are over 100 such commands but I only use about 10 or 12. 

 n order to keep track of the main command keys, I use buttons for guidance. I first used them on the control panel on the microwave.  And then I put them on specific pill bottles to differentiate between my medicines.

The buttons are only about 1/4 inch across, but they will stick to anything. I cannot only use the buttons, I can trim away the grid around them as a negative space. It's such a tiny item to have such a huge impact.  It not only guides me to command keys, it helps me orient myself to all the surrounding keys.

So now all the expensive magnifying glasses and lamps are unusable.  The  most important parts of my daily functioning depend on little tiny rubber buttons.  I'm so grateful for them and to the Lilac Services for the Blind for providing them. 


What recipe?


I have had a lifelong passion for cooking.  Before computers, I collected dozens of cookbooks and subscribed to several cooking magazines.  After the Internet came along, I would browse it for recipes.  I was eager to try new techniques and was undaunted by a long list of ingredients.

As my eyesight began to fail, I used stronger and stronger magnifying glasses to read recipes.  Then I began seeking easier recipes. The next step was trying to limit the number of ingredients so I could memorize recipes that my husband would read to me.   Finally I am at the stage where I use no recipes at all and improvise 99% of the time.

Now I rely on my many years of experience.  Actually it is going quite well and have come up with some interesting results by just throwing things together that sound good to me.  Mostly I rely on recipes that do not depend on specific amounts of ingredients to be successful and have a large margin for error.  For example, this week I made individual tarts with caramelized onions and goat cheese with egg and cream.

Two things that work in my favor: one is my husband loves to eat and eats everything--even  my mistakes.  And never criticizes what hits the table.  Secondly, there are lots of basic recipes that are very flexible. 

The two biggest cooking challenges are deboning meat or fish and detecting  mold on things, like cheese. This spring I've had my husband take over these chores.

How I come to terms with my stove is a whole other blog post.

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