Since I left work two hours early Friday, I’ve gone through a few boxes of tissues, several packets of Emergen-C, four bowls of chicken noodle soup, twice daily rounds with the neti pot, hot compresses on my eyes, Vicks on my chest, an entire season of a television show online, some reading in Best Food Writing 2009, a little bit of Food Network and, mercifully, an entire 15-hour block of sleep from Saturday into Sunday that, I’m pretty sure, is a miracle in itself considering all the constant nose-blowing.
I mean, I knew it was cold season, but, people, I haven’t taken sick time at work since Saint Patrick’s Day. A few months ago, when everyone was sniffling and sneezing, I somehow was fine, and so I kind of thought I must have a pretty great immune system or something.
Cue the line, Pride cometh before a fall. The thing about getting sick is it reminds you how weak and vulnerable you can be.
It doesn’t really matter how much you want to clean the bathroom or go out shopping or meet your friend for brunch; you can’t do it. Your body can’t do it.
And so, while you tuck yourself beneath a pile of blankets and think about all the things you were planning to do, you become content to do the one thing you have to do: nothing.
Or at least nothing besides the above-mentioned list of home remedies and entertainment/distraction. (What do you all do when you’re sick?) That, and make smoothies.
Ah, smoothies. Where else can you take a bunch of fruit, nothing else, and in a manner of minutes, have something as delicious as dessert?
I’ve grown very attached to this new habit, this way of drinking my vitamin intake. And you know, actually, in some ways, it was kind of nice that, on a day when snow came again to Chicagoland, I didn’t even notice.
When people were rushing around shopping malls, I was sound asleep. It’s just a few days before Christmas and, here I am, slowed down and quiet, sipping through a straw.
Homemade Blueberry-Orange-Banana Smoothie
I think I’ve made a total of four of these in the last week, yes, I am serious. The first time, I needed a little sweetener to make it taste better, but by the last time, the natural sugars in the fruit were plenty.
In fact, basically everything here is optional but the frozen blueberries, which give a great consistency to the shake, but you could also freeze whole bananas ahead of time for the same effect.
1 orange, peeled and sectioned
about a cup of frozen blueberries
1 banana, peeled
maybe a couple Tablespoons of milk
four ice cubes
sugar/sweetener, if necessary
Pour in a little milk to get it the right consistency if you’d like. Last, add the ice cubes to give it those awesome ice chunks throughout.
About Shanna Mallon
Shanna holds an MA in writing from DePaul University. Her mantra? Restoring order and celebrating beauty through creative content, photography, and food. Shanna's work has been featured in Bon Appetit, The Kitchn, MSN.com, Everyday Health, Better Homes & Gardens, Houzz.com, Food News Journal, Food52, Zeit Magazine, Chew the World, Mom.me, Babble, Delish.com, Parade, Foodista, Entrepreneur and Ragan PR.