Friday, March 9, 2012

MRI, Il Volo, Books, St. Patrick’s

I’m delighted to report that when I went for my MRI yesterday I discovered that I am definitely not claustrophobic. The most difficult part was getting my shoulder positioned exactly where she wanted it, under a kind of clamp although it didn’t clamp down. Slide up, move here, turn sideways a bit, now move your shoulder MRI2again, and on and on. Eventually she got me where she wanted me. I had ear plugs in, told to shut my eyes and was fed into the machine. Of course I had a way of stopping the machine if needed. However, I was fine. I started with my eyes closed and thought about books, I know a fair bit about them after all. I was particularly thinking about the Wheel of Time series and although I could remember the names of the three young men, damned if I could recall all the females. She kept asking if I was OK which I assured her I was. I eventually opened my eyes and looked around, not much to see, but one is pretty closed in. It is also pretty noisy, cannot imagine what it would be like without ear plugs. By the end, it was my back that was giving me problems. I was in there about half an hour I guess. Dunno, didn’t have a watch on. I just found a picture of a much larger MRI machine. I think it is a bit more futuristic than what is available today.

Last night we watched a TV special on PBS of Il Volo which was wonderful. I have raved about Il Volo before, three young Italians, Giancarlo, Piero and Ignazio who were in a talent competition which Giancarlo won, but the producer combined the three of them which worked brilliantly and Il Volo was born. Piero certainly has the makings of an opera singer and it was posited that they would not be together very long but would split to follow their own career paths. They are appearing at the Sony Centre in Toronto at the end of August, and I would love to go, but sadly that is unlikely to happen. I think I will have to content myself buying CDs etc. 

I just got hold of Patricia Cornwell’s latest Kay Scarpetta book, Red Mist. I have Red Mistbeen waiting for this for some time. Now I am not quite sure if I read the previous book, reading the first chapter or so, it doesn’t ring any bells with me. The last book I remember reading I thought the whole Scarpetta series was finished, done and dusted, but here she is again. I checked out some of the information about Cornwall’s books on and a paperback is cheaper than a Kindle version, I’m thinking “why would anyone buy the Kindle version then?” I still don’t know if there is a book I didn’t read or not. Maybe I should start at the beginning and read them all again.

I am already being sent recipes for St. Patrick’s Day, I used to have an Irish friend who got so mad every year because of all the recipes which came out specially for St. Patrick’s Day. As she pointed out, the Irish themselves do NOT cook anything particular that day so these are not Shamrockgenuine St. Paddy’s day recipes at all. Nevertheless north Americans cook corned beef and cabbage, the Chicagoans continue to pour green die into their waters and many of the pubs in this part of the world serve green beer. There is a huge parade in New York City and people all over North America tend to wear something green that day, especially when they go to work. My first wedding was on St. Paddy’s Day but not for any particular reason. One of Matt’s daughters and her husband were both born that day, both the same year which is unusual in a couple. I don’t remember we took a lot of notice of the day in the UK, maybe things have changed, as for St. George’s Day (Britain) and St. Andrew’s (Scotland) I haven’t a clue when they are. Of course having been so long away, one tends to forget anyway.

These are so pretty I just had to share them although I don’t think I would ever make them, dunno if any of you would.

Luck o' the Irish Cake Pops

Give the cake pop trend some St. Patrick's Day spirit with green food color and decorate with shamrock sprinkles for a festive dessert, inside and out.

Makes 4 dozen or 24 (2 cake pop) servings).


1 package (18 1/4 ounces) yellow cake mix

2 teaspoons McCormick® Green Food Color

3/4 cup marshmallow creme

1 bag (14 ounces) white confectionary coating wafers

Lollipop sticks

Green sprinkles (optional)


1. Prepare cake mix as directed on package, adding food color. Bake as directed on package for 13x9-inch baking pan. Cool completely on wire rack.
2. Crumble cake into large bowl. Add marshmallow creme; mix until well blended. Shape into 1-inch balls. Refrigerate 2 hours.
3. Melt coating wafers as directed on package. For each Cake Pop, dip 1/2 inch of lollipop stick into melted coating. Insert dipped end of lollipop stick halfway into cake ball. Let stand until coating is set. Dip each cake pop into melted coating. Shake gently to remove excess coating. Sprinkle or roll cake pops in green sprinkles, if desired. Place cake pops in styrofoam blocks. Let stand until coating is set.


Test Kitchen Tips:

  • Substitute 1/2 cup canned vanilla frosting for the marshmallow creme.
  • If styrofoam blocks are not available, use upside-down foam egg cartons or a cardboard box to hold the cake pops.

Have a great day



  1. I'm glad it all went well, Jo. I wish my experience had been as uneventful. Total unconsciousness for me if I have to have even my little toe MRIed in the future.

  2. There are bigger machines, do you have one in your neighbourhood. I know there is one in the Guelph Hospital which is the next town to us.

  3. I'll have to look into that. I hope they can work out what's causing your shoulder pain and resolve it.

  4. You and me both, although most of the pain has disappeared thank God