Kayaking to Inspire Health – Congratulations Maggie’s Way Team

The Writer Kayaking at English Bay to Inspire Health

The Writer Kayaking at English Bay to Inspire Health

Kayaking to Inspire Health was a fantastic day! I felt the energies of all who supported me—relying upon them especially on the way back when the mid-day winds picked up and made the water more choppy—and I made it all the way (4.5 nautical miles, or ~8km, about 1hr 15min in each direction). This paddling adventure supported a fundraiser for InspireHealth Integrative Cancer Care Centre in BC. A group of about 30 kayakers and 20 stand-up paddle boarders descended on Vancouver’s Jericho Beach in Kitsilano on a sunny Sunday morning and paddled to Third Beach in Stanley Park, supported in spirit and with funds by hundreds of generous donors and friends.

The Writer with Her bc Mentor and Their Team Mascot: The Cat

The Writer with Her bc Mentor and Their Team Mascot: The Cat

My friend and breast cancer mentor, Cathy, joined Maggie’s Way Team in person. We made “the cat” our team mascot, in honour of all the cat lovers who supported us. I was glad to have such an experience paddler at my side, keeping a watchful eye over my weakened strokes, and adding the proverbial wind to my sails when the wind gusts and choppy waters threatened to sink my spirits on our return. I thought also about everyone who I knew was thinking about me, sending me their energies, and cheering me on from afar—and I drew on their strength to support me in mine. Of course I had the option to rope up with Cathy or one of the event guides if I really needed it, but it felt good to challenge myself a little and to feel the strength of my well-wishers support my own paddling experience from over-night kayaking trips around the West Coast of BC from days gone by.

The Writer with Her #1 Fundraiser Winnings, Sporting Her Radiotherapy Dress

The Writer with Her #1 Fundraiser Winnings, Sporting Her Radiotherapy Dress

The food throughout the day was superb: handmade raw chocolate and oat balls for snacks, and BBQ’d to perfection salmon, delicious veggie skewers, and colourful coleslaw, Japanese and beetroot salads for lunch. I can hardly believe how hungry I was—even more than usual!

Both Cathy and I won raffle prizes, and I look forward to my first shiatsu massage.

Organic Food Gift Basket Winnings from SPUD for #1 Fundraiser

Organic Food Gift Basket Winnings from SPUD for #1 Fundraiser

And Cheers! to all of my supportive donors for making me the #1 fundraiser for this Paddle with InspireHealth event, and for winning me a gigantic gift basket from SPUD.ca, Vancouver’s organic grocery home delivery. It was too big and heavy to bring it back home on my bike, so thanks to Cathy for hand delivering it to me!

Together, the 12 of us fundraising on Maggie’s Way Team contributed $730 to programs offered at InspireHealth. On the day of the event, we had over $27,000 raised for this year’s Vancouver event. Donations can be made throughout the year, and Paddle with InspireHealth events are also taking place in Victoria and Kelowna, where InspireHealth currently has two regional Centres.

Organic Food Winnings from SPUD for #1 Fundraiser

Organic Food Winnings from SPUD for #1 Fundraiser

The rest of Sunday, I spent vegging out on my couch, applying various lotions, savouring my bounty, recalling the moving tales of all the inspiring people whom I had met during the day, and being grateful for all the support that ebbs and flows in my life when needed.

I am thrilled to have kayaked once again—and to know that a number of people on their cancer journeys will directly benefit at InspireHealth because I said “yes” to this adventure!

Thank you for saying “yes” with me, with your funds and your spirits.

Special Dish for the Week: Cabbage Roll Casserole

This week, I venture into the “Food and Love” personally made recipe book that I recently received from some good friends, and as my Special Dish for the Week, I “Maggify” my version of their:

Cabbage Roll Casserole

Cabbage Roll Casserole

Cabbage Roll Casserole

The original recipe calls for ground beef, which I turn vegetarian by substituting chopped up shiitake mushrooms.

Spicing up the dish with generous amount of grated ginger, garlic and black pepper, like my friends, I enjoy the final meal immensely.

The ingredients that I use to orchestrate this dish comprise:

  • 1 cup brown rice, prepared in a rice maker increasing its volume
  • 1/2 medium green cabbage, finely chopped
  • 20 shiitake mushrooms, some coarsely and some finely chopped
  • 1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
  • thumbsize amount of ginger, grated
  • 2 cloves garlic, grated
  • 3 cups canned diced tomatoes
  • 2 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 6 shiitake mushroom caps, for garnish
  • cilantro leaves, for garnish
  • cayenne pepper, for garnish
Cabbage Roll Casserole Serving

Cabbage Roll Casserole Serving

I lightly pre-cook the mushrooms, onions, ginger and garlic, seasoned with sea salt and black pepper. Combine all the ingredients (saving the garnishes) in a large bowl, I transfer them to a glass dish. The shiitake mushroom caps decorate the top. I bake it covered for 1 hr at 350oF, and another 1/2 hr uncovered. I do not stir the dish at the 1 hr mark although the original recipe suggests it—I might stir it, were it not decorated!

Cabbage Roll Casserole DIsh

Cabbage Roll Casserole DIsh

Serving carefully on a plate, so as to preserve its precarious integrity, I garnish the plate with sprinkling of cayenne pepper and cilantro leaves. I pair this cruciferous delight with a glass of homemade fermented beet juice in place of the usual glass of wine. it truly is delightful to the taste buds, and warming to the soul, with the knowledge that the dish was lovingly suggested by good friends, now from afar.

Meal ideas & recipes from the “Food and Love” book from some good friends.

Kayaking to Inspire Health

Support me to stay active, live a rich life, and support InspireHealth!

The Writer Kayaking in Desolation Sound, 2006

The Writer Kayaking in Desolation Sound, 2006

I’m going kayaking!

I am excited at this occasion to kayak again, while spending time with some pretty amazing and inspiring people—offering moral and financial support to InspireHealth Integrative Cancer Care Centre in BC. Join me in person or by sponsoring me! Or paddle with me in spirit!

I have been waiting to see how I am faring before committing, but with one week to go, and with every day turning out to be a surprise, I am jumping in with both feet—knowing, of course, that if I really don’t feel up to paddling on the day, everyone will understand.

The paddle is next Sunday, August 24, 2014, in Vancouver, crossing English Bay from Jericho Beach in Kitsilano to Third Beach in Stanley Park for a snack pit stop and back again. I estimate it will take an hour to paddle each way. With nutritious snacks and lunch provided, I plan to cycle to Jericho Beach—whether I end up paddling or not—to contribute to this fun event and worthy cause. InspireHealth has brought me innumerable benefits, and continues to be a great source of inspiration for so many!

Thank you for all your support! And read the highlights of the day.

Some more information about this event and my pledge:

InspireHealth is a not-for-profit society that provides integrative cancer care across British Columbia. The 2014 Paddle With InspireHealth will be hosted in each of the cities that are home to an InspireHealth regional centre: Vancouver, Victoria and Kelowna.

Each year, over 20,000 British Columbians are diagnosed with cancer. When a cancer diagnosis comes, we all want the best care possible for our families, ourselves, our friends—our loved ones. At InspireHealth, the medical doctors and other health professionals recognize that standard cancer treatment is only part of optimal care. Inspirehealth offers integrative cancer care with a whole-person approach to care, by integrating nutrition, exercise, emotional and immune support into conventional treatment. InspireHealth programs and services are backed by research.

100% of the proceeds raised through this event will go towards offering integrative cancer care for patients living with cancer across British Columbia.

I have committed to raising a minimum of $300 for InspireHealth, and I am hoping to raise even more before the event. Thank you in advance for your support!

Wishing you well,
Maggie

Please follow This Link* to visit my personal fundraising webpage and help me in my efforts to support InspireHealth.

* If the link is not redirecting to the fundraising page, please copy and paste the following into your browser:

http://paddleforinspirehealth.kintera.org/faf/r.asp?t=4&i=1109392&u=1109392-411287361&e=7875250494