Lauren Anne Adolfsen

Dear Readers,

On the evening of Monday, January 20, 2014, Lauren died peacefully at Sloan-Kettering, encircled by her mom, dad, brother, sister-in-law, boyfriend, and a few close friends. She was strong, spirited and brave, but the disease was unbelievably aggressive and unrelenting.

This isn’t the end of the road for Snack Mountain. We’re blessed with a wealth of Lauren’s photographs, artwork and writing. We will continue to add to her website as well as to this blog.

For those of you who knew Lauren, thank you for sharing your memories of her with us.

For everyone, let Lauren continue to inspire you.

She will forever be all sweetness and light, and will always remain in our hearts.

Lauren Adolfsen
Lauren Adolfsen at the Crochet Museum in Joshua Tree.
Posted in New New New | 5 Comments

Please Send Extra Love and Healing Vibes

Hello. So I have been having a really hard time hence no blog posts. The radiation has really taken a huge toll on my body. It makes chemo look like a walk in the park! I don’t really want to share more right now but this has been the most painful and difficult experience of my entire life and I pray that it passes soon. I actually spent the weekend in the hospital because of all of this. So please send extra love and healing vibes my way. To cheer myself I updated the cover screen and background on my phone. The cover is a pic of me and Steve from when we went to the Nutcracker.

And then my friend Martabel sent me this fun sticker picture so I made it my wallpaper.

Sometimes it’s the little things like this that can help so much, ya know. Ok, I’m about to get a Reiki treatment so hopefully that will help. Love to all! xoxo Lauren

P.S. I’ve gotten two Amazon packages (a book and a hat) and neither had a gift message so I don’t know who they are from. Can you please let me know if you sent me either of these? Thanks for sending!

Posted in New New New | 36 Comments

Happy New Year!

Hello! Happy New Year! So unfortunately I’ve been feeling pretty darn awful for the past few days. The pelvic radiation is really taking its toll on me but luckily I am officially done with all radiation and now I can just recover! To my dismay, the docs say the symptoms could continue for several more weeks (eek!). I will spare you the details but its digestive and incredibly painful. Today I got the ultimate trio of integrative treatments (Reiki, Acupuncture and Massage!) and I’m actually feeling better than I have in days right now so that is a relief. Despite how I’ve been feeling, I still had a great time with my friends on New Year’s. Friends and laughter are truly the best medicine.

So I asked Maura to make me a donut pillow to sit on (because it’s uncomfortable for me to sit most of the time) and look what she made! She is a freaking genius!!!

Here’s my friend Driscoll posing with it in front of his head!!! If only you could hear the hilarious voices he was making. Hahaha!

For the party, I asked Rachel to make a gluten-free vegan lasagna and it came out so UNBELIEVABLY DELICIOUS. I cannot even express in words how freaking good it was but everyone agreed that it was better than real lasagna! Here’s Steve taking it out of the oven!

And here’s a close-up!

I cobbled the recipe together from a few different sources so here’s a rough recipe for you. So she used just a gluten-free brown rice lasagna (alhough you could def use zuchhini in lieu of pasta! Then for the sauce I asked her to make a tomato sauce from the Crazy Sexy Kitchen cookbook. It’s pretty basic and any sauce would be fine! Then, the cashew cheese is from the Candle 79 cookbook Here it is:

Cashew Cheese
3 cups raw cashews soaked overnight
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons water
6 basil leaves
1 tablespoon parsley
Combine ingredients in a food processor and process until smooth and creamy.

Then as an additional item, I asked Rachel to make this Mushroom Ragout from Martha Rose Shulman from the NYTimes to use in it too. I asked her to leave out the flour and wine. And finally, she topped it with some vegan Daiya cheese which is kinda processed and probably not that healthy but it made it look super pretty! As for proportions, I had her double that cashew cheese recipe above and I just said to make enough to layer everything. I seriously recommend making this if you want to have a delicious feast! And for dessert, my friends are amazing and went to Babycakes and got a vegan gluten free chocolate cake!

After dinner we watched Muppets Take Manhattan which is my fave muppet movie ever!!! I was blown away by the vibrant colors in the movie! So amazing!

So I’m in a really rough patch right now but I’m holding on as best I can. I didn’t anticipate that radiation would be so much harder than chemo! But let me tell you that it is!!!! Having Steve here has been so helpful and wonderful and I’m so sad he has to go back on Saturday! I think instead planning a beach vacation for my birthday, I am going to go to LA for the week and rent a house for the birthday weekend up in Ojai with all my buddies from NYE. I found this amazing looking house on AirBnb!! I def wanna go to the Caribbean or somewhere similar in the next few months but I think planning ahead will be better! Alright homies! If you are in NYC, I hope you are enjoying the snow out there! Love to all! xoxo Lauren

Posted in New New New | 4 Comments

Vacation Ideas?

Omg, I gotta get off these steriods. I’ve been starving all day so I just ate spaghetti and chicken meatballs from the Meatball Shop  in addition to other food from the fridge and now I feel SO SICK. I can’t breathe! Steve said this is what it is like to be a 20 year old boy. Hahaha. Anyhoo, this isn’t exactly a blog post but more of a question I am posing out there to all of you readers. So I need to go on vacation soon. Real bad. My birthday is coming up in February and I want to go on some nice beach vacation probably in the Caribbean. Say Puerto Rico or Costa Rica? I dunno. Somewhere easy to get to from NY and somewhere that has good fresh food. Maybe there’s some resort out there that specializes in serving good food or something? You all know how important my diet is and I think I’d enjoy going somewhere where the food was part of the experience in addition to the relaxing beach experiences. If you have any ideas or suggestions, please email me or hit me up in the comments. Thanks so much! Love to all! xoxo Lauren

Posted in New New New | 1 Comment

Join The Pac Attack

Yes, that’s right! I’m taking Lourdes’ advice to heart! Let’s gobble up all the cancer! More on Lourdes in a minute. My bro and Lisa got me and Steve all these fun vintage trading cards for xmas and this seemed too perfect! Check out the stash!

Despite having a terrible night’s sleep, after breakfast I felt revitalized and kinda hyper actually (I guess my breakfast does involve taking steriods…). Anyhoo, I did feel stronger today and not as terrible as a few days ago so that’s good. My aunt and cousins came from Long Island to see me which was super nice! And then we went to the Nutcracker and ate at Fiorellos! Check me and Steve out at Lincoln Center!

I wore this silk shirt and my wig and felt pretty for the first time in ages. Seeing the Nutcracker made me so happy! It was so beautiful and uplifting and I was giving myself some real good reiki that felt amazing! Multi-tasking! Haha. And now here is a shot of me and Steve at dinner!

On the subject of food, I’ve been indulging in an incredibly unhealthy diet which has been both amazing but also confusing for me since I am usually such a puritan about eating healthy food. But because of the pelvic radiation, I can’t really eat many vegetables! It’s so weird! So at dinner, I ate some of the delicious pizza (it’s an important indulgence) and this gluten free pasta with crab and sea urchin (which I had never really had before) and it was so delicious. I also ate some seitan parmesean which was totally fried and covered in tons of cheese. Wow. And did I mention that we had bagels, nova, sable, scallion cream cheese from Barney Greengrass for lunch? I’m done now but I can’t say I haven’t been enjoying it. And at least I didn’t have too much nausea today. I made this amazing healing tea from the cancer fighting kitchen cookbook that had fresh ginger, coriander, cardamom, and cloves in it. Wow. It took an hour to make and boy is it some powerful stuff! Definitely going to be a new staple of mine! I can share the recipe with you soon.

Before I attempt to sleep (I say attempt because I don’t feel like I’ve actually slept many hours since I’ve been on these steriods) I want to tell you a crazy story from my reiki session with Lourdes yesterday. First of all, she is so lovely and I am having an amazing time connecting with her. She is very open, gentle, kind and loving. All good things. So, about halfway through the session I asked her if she felt any kind of energy and she said yes. She said that she could sense some kind of Golden Temple and a white light in my body. I was speechless. One of the main guided meditations I’ve been doing lately is one where you go to a Golden Temple and a white light scans your body and removes all the disease in it. Is this not insane? So during the session, I put the meditation on while she worked on me. Everyday I am blown away by this practice and I am fully devoted to becoming a reiki master once I recover. And I’ve been drinking my Asea and I believe that it is working.

Tomorrow I’ve got more radiation scheduled and am meeting with the clinical trials doc at Sloan to get his opinion on my case because he ran into my dad at the hospital the other day while we were waiting for radiation so that should be interesting. I hope that you all had wonderful weekends with your family and hopefully I will check back with you before the new year. My besties from LA are all in town so we are having a SLUMBER party on NYE so that should be rad! Love and healing to all! xoxo Lauren

Posted in New New New | 2 Comments

What’s Up Homies?!?!

So here’s a shot of me as I waited to get my first brain radiation. Looking pretty snazzy if I don’t say so myself. I love patterns and especially layering them! Yesterday my friend Arden sent me this amazing scarf that I was excited to wear! Here’s another shot of it in all its glory!

We waited hours and hours to get into radiation which is very common but everyone who works there is so nice and once I got onto the machine it took no time at all. I also got my 4th of 5th pelvic radiation yesterday (last one on Monday). So after Tuesday I’ll be all done with radiation. I cannot wait to be done with all of it. The pelvic radiation has been taking a harder toll on me than I expected. It’s made me have terrible nausea and have other digestive issues that I will spare you. I’ve also just felt overwhelmed by everything in a way that I’ve never felt before and its SO HARD. I don’t know how to articulate it but it just feels like, woah, this is a fucking lot to deal with and I long for the day when this is behind me. Or at least till I am at a point where I don’t feel so bad all the time. It’s exhausting. Plus, I haven’t really been able to sleep because I’ve been on steroids for 2 weeks now. Steve and I are vegging out in bed right now and it’s so fun!

The other day we made this amazing healing soup from a recipe from The Seaweed Man. Rachel had made it the week before but I ran out so my mom and and Steve helped me make another batch. It’s so amazing. Here is the first “poem” part of the recipe:

Here is a recipe for a calming soup.  The most important ingredient is the calm mind of the cook.  I suggest these thoughts:  Relax. Pay attention. There is nothing to be done. It is all covered. You do not need to worry. You will get exactly what you need in every moment of your life. Your Great Perfection, liberating you into the Light, is already accomplished. Relax. Center your breath in the Heart making the sound of “Ahhh” and be grateful. Trust Spirit, put “other” in place of “self” and breathe deeply, relaxing into the Great Presence.  Now make a peaceful soup. 

The order is this: Heat water (3-4 quarts) Add seaweed Soup Mix  (a teaspoon per serving) (to make a nutrients-dense broth), Wash grain (three times), swirl and strain, (half a cup oats, rice, or barley). Add grain, shiitake mushrooms, ginger root. Cut root vegetables (carrots, parsnips, rutabaga). Dice an onion and some garlic, saute’ with thyme. (Choose your favorite oil: sesame, olive, coconut.) When grain is softened, add root vegetables, tamari. Finish off with a generous amount of greens: Kale, parsley, celery.  Add the onions. If you have fresh herbs, now is the time! This soup gets better on the second day, and you can add pasta sauce, noodles, and cut corn, totally renewing the flavors. Enjoy!

Here’s a shot of the soup plus some AMAZING eggs from Ellen’s chickens!

I seriously think eggs are the perfect food. SO filled with nutrients, so delicious, so pure. Ah, so much love. It’s even more special when they come from chickens from someone you know. You really can’t buy them at the store. Farmer’s market ONLY is my rule. Not even Whole Foods. Otherwise, you just don’t know what you are getting and how those lil chickens were treated, what they feed them, etc.

Anyhoo, Reiki has continued to be transformational for me and given me so much confidence in my recovery. This woman Lourdes has been coming and I absolutely adore her! Yesterday she gave me an amazing suggestion to visualize the game Ms. Pacman in my body and Ms. Pacman gobbles up all the cancer cells. How amazing is that? I used to LOVE to play that game at my favorite bar in college. I kinda want to make some kind of animation of the different parts of my body where Ms. Pacman is going to work! And she’s gonna get lots of pretzels and cherry bonuses along the way! Haha. Lourdes is also organizing a weekly group reiki session for me where at least 6 people will give me reiki at the same time. Wow!

Well, my lovelies, I think I am going to respond to some long overdue emails now. I love you all out there and hope that you are having a beautiful Saturday! xoxo Lauren

Posted in New New New | 4 Comments

Merry Xmas!

Hello my friends! So things have been incredibly overwhelming and I am proud of myself for staying afloat. People often say how brave and strong I am. When people say this, I usually think that if put in my situation, anyone would step up these qualities. But this week was proof to myself that this is an inherent quality of mine and that I am developing and strengthening this quality during this challenging time in my life. Sloan Kettering blew me away again this week with their outstanding medical care. I am so lucky to have access to the best medical care ever! On Monday I met with a gynecological radiation oncologist who was very sweet and kind and she arranged for me to start pelvic radiation that same day to get the bleeding and pain under control. On our way to the appointment I encountered some of the most severe pain I’ve ever had and we got some serious heavy duty painkillers but I think the radiation is already helping that area and that I won’t need it. Fingers crossed. Also, I can’t help but share with you the fact that during some intense bleeding episodes, I have been wearing DEPENDS and I think it’s hilarious. It’s what all the cool kids on Bedford Ave or Silver Lake are going to be doing soon. Just you wait and see! Haha. Because things have been so intense and overwhelming I’ve been having a hard time remembering what day it is which is understandable. So a few nights ago, not sure which day, Lisa and Eric came over to decorate our tree! We really have the best ornaments! Here are some fun pics!

Here’s a felt banana-man ornament I made ages ago!

Here is an old ornament from the Nutcracker! We are going on Sunday and I am soooooo excited!!!

And another nutcracker girlie!

I haven’t had time to write about it much but there is so much I want to write about my experience with Reiki. It has been transformational for me. My friend Rebecca has been coming over every day to give me treatments and today this new woman I met through Ellen named Lourdes is coming over. It not only provides me with comfort but also this increasing confidence that I will recover. There have been moments this week where I have faced some serious fear in acknowledging how scary this disease is because of how aggressive and widespread it is in my body. But I feel that the Reiki is helping me through the transformation needed to overcome this illness. I am so grateful to Rebecca for introducing me to Ellen and this amazing practice.

We are still trying to figure out our plan for treating the cancer in my body post-radiation treatments but with the help of my amazing doctor at Columbia, it seems like we are coming closer to figuring it out.

So Steve is on a plane right now and I cannot wait to see him! I hope that you are all out there enjoying the holiday with your families. I send my love to everyone giraffe style (t-shirt from Rebecca!) xoxo Lauren

Posted in New New New | 7 Comments