Sunday, January 26, 2014

Tillie Talks

A few of my most recent Tillie-isms:

Me: "Ok, I'm going for a run."
Tillie: "Ok, but come back mama."

Matilda is getting more emotionally sophisticated in her suggestions when Bea is crying.
"Daddy, bring Bea to mama"
"Mama, Bea wants you"
"Mama, PLEASE come get Bea"

New Songs being sung in the back of the car...

"Take me out to the ballgame. Take me out to the barn. Buy me peanuts and crackers."

"Bringing home my Baby Baby Bea. Won't my mama be so proud of me."


"Swiper! No Swiping!" (said like 'fwiper, no fwiping)
She picked this up from a few Dora books that we read all of the time, and says it anytime Bea tries to take her toys, or if she is in the midst of stealing food off of the counter....

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Keep Your Eye On the Calm

 This is not a new topic. In fact, I've covered it recently. Which was part of the problem going into the last 24 hours of my life. Business travel is just not my jam right now.

Coming off of a weekend where I was quite sick, I was not exactly looking forward to saying goodbye to my sweet girls and boarding a plane to NYC where I was certain I would contract the flu. And I knew that this trip was doomed as soon as the cab that I called to pick me up got stuck in my neighbors driveway and I had to finagle random passerby's to help us un-stick this cab. My contribution was to drive the cab while they pushed.

Why did you take a cab, one might ask. Well you see since my husband is a crazy biker we still only have one car. And since he was on single daddy duty, he needed said car to get the girls to daycare since we live in the birthplace of the Polar Vortex.

See these---these are my keys:

In my hand, pulled from the pocket of my coat while I am sitting on the airplane. I just rescued the cab to take me to the airport only to strand my husband without the car, which at this point may as well have taken me to the airport. Sidenote: Thank god for AMAZING neighbors, who were generous enough to help us out getting the girls to school in tact without frostbite.

We land in NYC. Immediately begin hearing tales of a blizzard to hit the city. I am hopeful. We are leaving early enough, it should be fine. Maybe it will start later than expected. Maybe it won’t be as bad as expected.

8AM: Snow.
10AM: All flights cancelled
10:01AM: I am immediately on the phone with the work travel line, who works magic gets be re-booked on some random flight out of some random airport I've never heard of. Amazingness.

EXCEPT…..that flight gets cancelled. And at about that exact same time I learn that my ORIGINAL flight never actually got cancelled, it got moved—earlier (like when does this ever happen?). The time is now 12:20. We are in Manhatten. The flight is scheduled to leave at 1:30.  At this point I have shed tears.
And lets not forget it is a blizzard outside.

Myself and another woman, who is in the zone of working momdom with me, go for it. We race to get a cab. And wait. Watch the clock tick. Call Delta. Call the work travel line. I throw all modesty out the window and pump. While in a cab. With my co-worker.

We pull up, throw money at the driver (unfortunately that is not an exaggeration), and R-U-N as fast as we ever have through the airport. Because I am still nursing I get stopped because I have breast milk and I am not kidding the lady seemed like she was moving through molasses. Like quicksand would swallow her at any moment. But I try to remain polite. Say nothing and just try to stay calm focusing on the next step.

Everything checks out, and I am running through the airport, in my stocking feet, holding my boots, and my breastmilk, and starting to cry tears of joy that this is going to actually work out. But then…I get to the gate and realize I have left my ID and boarding pass at security.

It’s true. I did that. My heart sank. I started crying. The gate agent said we are closing this door. I yelled: “NO! Please please no”. And then, molasses gate agent woman appears out of nowhere hands me my ID, and I walk through that door.

As I entered the plane, literally tears of relief came over me. I saw my friend and she said she totally cried once she got on to.

The lesson?

There are 2:

1) Always be polite. Even if you are stressed to the max. That security woman saved my hide. And had I been a snarky beeotch to her about her pace my guess is my ass would be stuck in LGA tonight.

2)As we pulled away from NYC and rose above the snowstorm below, the sun started to poke out. As cheesy as it may sounds it was very parallel to my life at that moment. Being a working mom during the baby years is so tough. You are in the eye of the storm, and it consumes you entirely. But above that storm is calm. And you have to keep your eye on the calm.

Any my calm came tonight. As I walked in the door. Seeing Tillie’s little head poking out of the window, and hearing her shriek when I knocked on the door. The snuggles. The Bea smiles, and the bedtime stories. Made the stress, the sprint, the fatigue melt away.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

The Best Soup We Ever Made

Last week we had a full menu planned. Lots of new recipes to try, and few old stand-bys. I usually anticipate one of them to be a pretty big miss, and I would be lying to you if I told you that I was 100% confident about this recipe going into it.

But I am here to tell you....this soup, this Chicken-Lentil Curry Soup is quite possible the best soup we have ever made.

As I started eating it, I said nothing, waiting to see if it was just me or if Nate also liked it. He immediately said, "wow this is really good"...few more bites..."no seriously, this is SO good."

And so I feel the need to pass this along, almost like it is my duty for my fellow cooking friends.

So here is the beauty shot:

Picture of Chicken-Lentil Curry Soup Recipe

And HERE is the full recipe on Food Network!

Make the soup, enjoy the soup, and report back. Hopefully you love it as much as we all did.
 Happy Cooking!

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Like a BandAid

Have you ever thought and thought and thought about something  that you almost felt paralyzed to actually act?

That is how I have felt about reintroducing dairy into my diet.
For the last 11 months, I have not had any true dairy. No cheese. No Yogurt. No Milk. No butter (although that has loosened in bake goods in the past months).

It wasn't because of some crazy fad diet.
It was for my sanity.
Because Matilda struggled as a baby. For all sorts of reasons. And so did I.
So, with about 6 weeks to go in my pregnancy I cut out all dairy (a source for fussiness for many babies these days), and haven't looked back.

But I KNOW that Bea is ready to try it. She is past the age that the stomach issues would really cause fussiness. BUT, it just has NEVER seemed worth it.

We waited for a 3 day weekend. Three of those happened in the last 2 months, and each one was filled with another excuse of why it wasn't the right time.

So apparently Bea just got sick of waiting and took matters into her own hands...

Let me explain. Tonight was a bit of a shit show in our house.
Tillie spiked a fever and literally would not be set down.
Bea, doesn't like when Tillie cries, and will start crying as well.
I had finally gotten Bea side-tracked and was in the kitchen getting dinner ready. Tillie and Nate were in the living room, snuggling and having a slice of cheese.

Or so I thought.
I guess they went into the room, and left the cheese unattended.
And since Bea is a 1st class scavenger, and is cruising around any thing she can pull up on, she was not about to miss out on whatever deliciousness her big sister was munching on.

And so like that--Bea has had dairy. Which I guess means I am having pizza tomorrow (what I have single-handedly missed the most).
And hopefully we won't be up all night with a fussy baby.
Or wake to a baby that has broken out in hives.

Either way, she had a moment of pure cheese bliss as you can see at the end of this video.

Here is to more cheese, ice cream, and lots of yummy yogurt in the future!

Monday, January 6, 2014

Polar Vortex By The Numbers

It was bound to happen, since we do live in what seems like the North Pole some days (although in reality it is just Minnesota).

A day SO cold that the Governor mandated schools shut down. Which meant daycares shut down. Which meant the girls were at home. And guess what? It is happening again--tomorrow. Because it is still too damn cold to start a freaking school bus.

Normally, I would be overjoyed at an extra day at home with my snuggle-bugs...but to be honest. We are coming off of winter break...and lots and lots of days in a row with the  monsters snuggle-bugs. So I am kind of ready to re-enter the workforce.

Here is what Day 1 of the Polar Vortex looked like by the numbers in our house:

5-  outfit changes for the kiddos required due to food/pee/water/pee again
1- potty accidents that happened on a place not easy to clean
3-  things Bea put in her mouth that were borderline dangerous
16- videos uploaded by friends throwing boiling water in the air and watching it turn to snow immediately
2- play-dates with the best neighbors ever to maintain sanity
90- minutes that both girls napped at the same time
1- item that we found in our stroller that we did not pay for after returning from Galleria

That's right. The Polar Vortex drove us to go to Galleria just to run the hallways (which was good since they almost all of the stores were closed down already). We popped into the bookstore, and Matilda took it upon herself to just throw a little Hello Kitty Magnetic doll set into the bottom of our stroller.

Said another way...

Our daughter is now officially a klepto and cannot be trusted. And I am pretty sure the Polar Vortex made her do it. Because I am not willing to own this as flawed parenting quite yet.....

In the meantime we are trying to decide what to do. If you see us at Barnes and Noble tomorrow returning the stolen goods, please pretend to not see us and spare me my dignity. Or just stare at this one since she isn't capable of stealing. Yet....

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Cooking in 2014

It has been a few years since we chose a legit book to be our 'cookbook of the year.'

It started out when we were first married with the idea that we would cook our way through a new cookbook each year. Writing dates, notes and memories in each book along the way.

We cooked out way through Great Food Fast, Nigella Express, Cookling Light Way to Cook and more. But with the advent of Pinterest, and a whole mess of magazine subscriptions we had taken a break from the traditional cookbook for the easier digital version.

But the break is over! My sister got Nate this amazing cookbook for Christmas, and I think it may just be the single most used item in our house next year. We are both so excited about it because it is very much our style....Introducing the new cookbook of 2014:

Those of you that know us, know that we love to cook and are hoping that that love rubs off on  the kidlets, and helps them become a morsel less picky than I was growing up. (and that gives them a wide path because I.was.the.pickiest.)

Laura's philosophy on food pretty much sums our up word for word so we are so excited to be digging into this cookbook especially since Bea is joining the table food crowd and is pretty much off of purees entirely.

So as to not waste any time, we rang in the New Year with Breakfast Cookies. Super easy to make. Matilda helped (and ate a handful of ground flax, which she regretted, and a handful of coconut, which she didn't).

Click Here for recipe.

The Adult Verdict: They were good. It was a nice break from our typical eggs, or french toast. But they were only good right away. Left-overs not so much.

The Kid Verdict: Matilda loved them. And moreso loved that she got cookies. She couldn't believe it. Kept looking at her plate and saying "My cookies??". It was a breakfast win. :)

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Christmas: Photo Edition

I would like to say that all of this photos are soooo amazing that they speak for themselves. Or that there was some greater vision for this post. But the reality is, I just don't have it in me to recap the last almost 2 weeks with anything but these photos. There were MANY photos, but theses were a few of my favorites from the holiday.

Santa brought the girls a big ladybug tent and tunnel, and they had lots of fun playing in it!

This pretty much sums up our whole family, in one photo.

The aftermath!

Tillie was a great big helper--opening Bea's presents for her.

A good with with Grandma and Grandpa! (Tillie was not cooperative!)

Matilda test drove almost all of Bea's toys.

You don't have a 9 month old without a picture like this one..

Cousin love!


Baby and a Christmas tree. Love.

We left a cookie and some red peppers for Santa. Although Tillie nabbed a few peppers before he arrived.

Hope you all had a very merry Holiday season!