I’m currently in a battle against nap time. Nap time isn’t winning but I can’t say that I am either. She’s obviously tired, anyone can see that. But I guess life is too exciting and interesting to waste time on shut eye. I wish I could go inside her little baby brain and see what she’s thinking and experiencing. What is it that makes her fight sleep so hard? I love sleep. I wish someone would wrap me up in a warm blanket and tell me to take a nap.

In another life I probably wouldn’t have been able to sleep but these days a nap sounds heavenly, especially with the cold, rainy, dreary days we continue to have. It’s the end of May and the mountains are expecting another layer of snow and the sun hasn’t shown its face in several days. I thought we were supposed to get 300 days of sunshine in Denver? The unofficial start of summer is this weekend, I’d settle for spring.IMG 8868 740x1024 Simple Honey Mustard Salad Dressing

Anyway, enough blabbing. Last weekend while my mom was here we had a little dinner. I dare say that it might have been the first dinner we’ve hosted since moving into the new house and definitely the first one since Noe arrived on the scene. We were a little nervous about how the bedtime routine would go down with guests and if she’d sleep through 3 additional voices outside her bedroom door but she did great. In fact, she did so well that we may plan another dinner party before she’s in middle school.

IMG 9252 1024x1024 Simple Honey Mustard Salad Dressing

For said dinner I made vegetable enchiladas and a big salad with this simple honey mustard salad dressing. These days everything is pretty simple but this salad dressing is stupid simple. I use a mason jar to mix everything together and to store leftovers in the fridge for less clean up. And although I’m partial to creamier dressings (I’m looking at you ranch), I really like the clean tangy flavor of this dressing. One can only eat so much ranch…said no one ever.

IMG 8867 954x1024 Simple Honey Mustard Salad Dressing

Simple Honey Mustard Salad Dressing
Author: 
Recipe type: Salad Dressing
Prep time: 
Total time: 
 
Simple honey mustard salad dressing.
Ingredients
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons warm water
Instructions
  1. Place all ingredients except water into a mason jar.
  2. Stir well to incorporate everything.
  3. Add water to slightly thin out the dressing.
  4. Serve atop your favorite salad.
  5. Dressing will save in the fridge for up to a week.

IMG 8871 1024x768 Simple Honey Mustard Salad DressingEnjoy and Exhale!

facebook Simple Honey Mustard Salad Dressingtwitter Simple Honey Mustard Salad Dressingpinterest Simple Honey Mustard Salad Dressingdiggit Simple Honey Mustard Salad Dressingtumblr Simple Honey Mustard Salad Dressingstumbleupon Simple Honey Mustard Salad Dressingreddit Simple Honey Mustard Salad Dressinggoogle Simple Honey Mustard Salad Dressingemail Simple Honey Mustard Salad Dressing

The baby is currently taking one of her 35 minute power naps so I thought I’d pop in to say hello and share the randomness that is my mind…

IMG 9270 768x1024 Randomness

1.) I really want to wear shorts and dresses but the weather gods have decided that Denver is now Seattle and we’ll be enjoying another week of rain. Sigh.

2.) Do you have little quirks and habits? Whenever I’m heating something in the microwave and want to take it out early I always wait until it’s not on a number that ends in 5 or 0. For example, I won’t pull my coffee out with 25 seconds left but 24 seconds is just fine. Just me?

3.) Speaking of time, my running watch has the world’s worst battery. I swear I’m charging it every 2 runs.

4.) And speaking of running, today I met one of my running partners for a rainy morning run. Running buddies are the best! 4 miles flew by with someone to chat with.

5.) Last Saturday night Michael and I sat in the dark after putting Noe to bed and couldn’t decide what to have for dinner. I ended up eating yogurt and granola. It was rather pathetic and kicked me into high gear to start doing some food prep. Last week I chopped about a billion vegetables and made some risotto and a big batch of quinoa. I’m hoping I can keep this up in the coming weeks as well.

IMG 9170 1024x1024 Randomness

This was the start of a baked risotto with mushrooms, asparagus, zucchini and spinach.

IMG 9177 1024x1024 Randomness

6.) My new strategy for cooking.
IMG 9176 1024x955 Randomness

7.) Noe and I currently have about 60 selfies on my phone. I just can’t get enough of her. Doesn’t she kind of look like she’s doing blue steel here?

IMG 9162 Randomness

8.) I love her face here. Coffee is gross!

IMG 9119 1024x1024 Randomness

9.) A few recent eats. Breakfast continues to be my biggest meal of the day.

Smoothie bowl.

IMG 9001 1024x1024 Randomness

Veggie bowl for lunch. I wish I could eat something like this every day but it just doesn’t happen.

IMG 9018 1024x1024 Randomness

10.) My mom was in town this weekend. We had such a lovely visit. I’m feeling sort of glum today.

IMG 9212 1024x1024 Randomness

She babysat so Michael and I could have our first date night.

IMG 9258 Randomness

Okay, 35 minutes are up, on the dot. Gotta run back to this love bug.

IMG 9261 1024x1024 Randomness

Hope you’re all having a great day.

Enjoy and Exhale!

 

facebook Randomnesstwitter Randomnesspinterest Randomnessdiggit Randomnesstumblr Randomnessstumbleupon Randomnessreddit Randomnessgoogle Randomnessemail Randomness

It seems the months are going faster and faster. The first six weeks felt like an eternity but now a day slips by almost seemingly without me knowing. I should have been writing this update as the month progressed but alas I didn’t so I’ll have to go off what memory I have and these photos as proof it actually happened and that we are in month three.

All I can say is that Noe continues to get more and more fun with each passing day. She’s discovering the world around her and it’s so amazing to see. Our little baby is not so little anymore. The last time we went to the doctor at two moths she was 10.5 lbs but my guess is she’s closer to 12 now. She fits well into most 3 months pieces of clothing and is now officially out of all newborn clothes, including her sleep sacks which used to seem so huge on her. I sort of can’t believe the onesie she’s wearing in the photo below still fits.

three months 988x1024 Month Three

Time lapse.

PicMonkey Collage 1024x341 Month Three

This might be my most favorite photo of her yet. She’s a really happy baby especially in the morning and mid-day. She smiles like crazy and has started to smile in reaction to things like singing and pretending to eat her feet.

IMG 9121 1024x1024 Month Three

She’s holding her head up really well and can sit on her own if we can prop her against something with a back but does have a tendency to tip over, which is sort of funny.

IMG 9120 1024x1024 Month Three

Her eyes continue to lighten and pretty much match mine at this point. I’m hopeful that they’ll stay blue.

IMG 9116 1024x1024 Month Three

We’ve made it a point to get out of the house more this month. It’s been really good for all of us not to spend so much time at home. We visited Michael’s cousin and family. It was the most incredible thing to see Noe and Livy together. Liv was attentive and acted just like a big sister. We pretty much spent the entire visit snapping photos. It felt like every second was worth documenting.

IMG 9094 1024x1024 Month Three IMG 9080 1024x1024 Month ThreeIMG 9087 829x1024 Month Three

Noe’s begun to take some interest in books. She can sit through about one story before getting distracted.

IMG 9066 1024x1024 Month Three

She continues to LOVE bath time and her only real screaming fit during the day is right after we take her out of the tub. She absolutely loses it. I don’t blame her, I love the bath too.

IMG 9038 1024x1024 Month Three

She’s much more independent now. She can spend time on her little playmat and in the swing without crying. Making it much easier for me to get things done now. She’s also learning to grab at things, Mr. Starfish is a favorite.

IMG 8989 1024x984 Month Three

I could look at this face all. day. long. She’s much better sleeping on her own now and very rarely falls asleep on me anymore.

IMG 8970 768x1024 Month ThreeIMG 8910 1024x1024 Month Three

She continues to love on her daddy, especially in the evenings. Michael is still doing the evening feeding. She goes to bed around 8:30 and has been sleeping pretty much straight until between 5 and 6 in the morning. It’s been great getting so much uninterupted sleep. She won’t always go back down in her crib after she’s up but will usually fall asleep for another hour or two in the swing while I nap on the couch.

IMG 89841 1024x1024 Month Three

Sometimes daddy does her hair!

IMG 8949 1022x1024 Month Three

She’s captivated by color.

IMG 8933 1024x1024 Month Three

And is finally noticing the dog.

IMG 8919 1024x950 Month Three

And other people.

IMG 8916 1024x1024 Month Three IMG 8972 1024x1024 Month Three

Her smiles are out of control!

IMG 8903 1024x1024 Month Three

Personally I feel great. I continue to run and do yoga and walk on days in between. I’m back in most of my pre-pregnancy clothes minus a few shirts that just don’t fit right over the girls. icon smile Month Three I’m going to begin teaching again starting this week at a new studio. We are also exploring daycares so that I can go back to work a few days a week starting this summer.

Weight: Not sure but guessing 11 or 12lbs.

Likes: her playmat, sucking on her hand, her little mousy toy, mornings

Dislikes: getting out of the bathtub

Can’t live without: her swing

Favorite Noe-ism: all of her amazing little faces

Looking forward to: laughter, she’s kind of giggling and she’s working on flipping from stomach to back, I imagine that will happen in the next month or so

Love you little No-Bird.

IMG 8998 Month Three

Enjoy and Exhale!

facebook Month Threetwitter Month Threepinterest Month Threediggit Month Threetumblr Month Threestumbleupon Month Threereddit Month Threegoogle Month Threeemail Month Three

Staying active throughout my pregnancy was incredibly important to me. I didn’t have any real expectations to run throughout my entire pregnancy but I ended up feeling well enough to right up until the day before my c-section which was a wonderful surprise. I definitely attribute all that running and yoga to my speedy recovery and what I consider to be a successful re-entry into postpartum running. Here are a few tidbits I picked up along the way as it relates to getting back out there.

1.) Wait!

As anxious as I was to get moving after having Noe I was incredibly diligent about waiting the recommended six weeks before running again. I knew the healing time upfront would benefit me way more than starting too early. Don’t get me wrong, I had my running shoes on 10 minutes after I got the all clear from my MD but I do think that time allowed my body to fully recover without the added stress of the pavement. Plus, I fell back in love with walking. I started walking within the first few days of having Noe and continued to up my mileage until I was cleared to run.

IMG 8668 1024x1024 Postpartum Running

2.) Accept the slow down.

I see my running speed and distance from day 1 of pregnancy to today as an upside down bell curve (btw, I’m sure there’s a scientific name for that, sorry), slowly getting slower and slower until I bottomed out and had to climb my way back up. Shocker but you don’t just go back to your pre-pregnancy speed after the baby is born. icon smile Postpartum Running

Last Memorial Day I ran the Bolder Boulder. That race was the fastest race I’ve run in years at a 7:40 10k pace, 2 weeks later I found out I was pregnant. From there my speed and distance naturally just decreased. In the early months I was able to continue running around an 8 minute/mile pace which slowed to 9, 10 and eventually 11-12 minute/mile by 40 weeks. The slow down was easy to accept while carrying a baby. What I wasn’t prepared for was how slow I’d be afterward. My first postpartum run was still about 11 minutes/mile. In the last 5+ weeks of running I’ve seen that number go back down again but it’s an ongoing process. Currently I’m hovering at about a 9-9:30 pace but did manage to run one mile at 8:09 yesterday, whoo hoo!

IMG 8823 1024x1024 Postpartum Running

3.) Find running buddies.

I’m was never big on running with groups. I like my solo running time but since being on maternity leave I’m craving the interaction. Our neighborhood has a mommies group that includes a group of mom runners. A few weeks ago I made the effort and posted to the group asking if anyone wanted to run. I’ve had several people reach back out to me including one mom whom I’ve set up a standing weekly running date with. It’s great for accountablity but also for speed. She’s a faster runner than I am and has been pushing me to take less breaks and run longer than I would have on my own. Plus, having someone to chat with makes that miles go faster.

4.) Set a goal.

I have my sights set on running the Bolder Boulder again this year. I know I won’t run it as fast but having a race to look forward to fires me up.

5.) Plan ahead.

Running used to consist of me deciding two minutes before I was ready to go. Now it requires making sure that Noe is changed and fed ahead of time, that the stroller is prepped, that I have Eli’s leash, etc. It’s a three ring circus as we head out but I’m slowly learning to plan my runs around feedings and naps. It’s also taken a few trials for Eli to get the hang of running with a stroller, not to mention getting my arms in shape to push 30 extra pounds (also a reason to accept the slowdown). This coordination has taken time and I just now feel like the three of us have found our groove. It’s all worth it though to see this happy face afterward.

IMG 89761 1024x1024 Postpartum Running

6.) Let your body be your guide.

I still take walking breaks. I still slow my pace. I take rest days or go to yoga when I’m not feeling it. Pregnancy taught me more than ever to LISTEN to my body. I’m so incredibly thankful that it allowed me to carry my little girl for 9 months, for healing with relative ease and for allowing me to lace up my running shoes 6 weeks after surgery. The least I can do is listen to what it has to say.

IMG 8901 Postpartum Running

Looking back over these tips, I don’t think they are exclusive to postpartum running. Running should be enjoyable and not something that you have to do. I’m looking so forward to lots of summer of running and racing.

Enjoy and Exhale!

facebook Postpartum Runningtwitter Postpartum Runningpinterest Postpartum Runningdiggit Postpartum Runningtumblr Postpartum Runningstumbleupon Postpartum Runningreddit Postpartum Runninggoogle Postpartum Runningemail Postpartum Running

Two of my best girlfriends were in town from California a few weeks ago to meet Noe. Like best friends are known to do, we did very little, but the visit still felt amazingly rich and full. There was no need to entertain, they just cuddled, rocked, sang and all around loved on Noe. We did a lot of sitting on the couch catching up and walking around the neighborhood. However, we did manage to get out for breakfast both mornings they were here and Noe slept through both occasions. It was actually quite lovely.

As my love affair with oats continues to remain strong, I ordered oatmeal on both mornings. My favorite came from Sunny’s, this adorable cafe. They have several different oatmeal bowls with toppings like toasted coconut, honey, fruit, nuts and jams. I’ve tried a few of the bowls but my favorite remains the peanut butter and jelly oats. What’s not to love, all my favorite things mixed into one bowl.

The heat of the oats melts the peanut butter and jelly down so that it’s easy to swirl into every bite. I like to add banana slices because well, it’s breakfast and bananas are the perfect breakfast food and I also add chopped peanuts, if I have them, for texture. This particular bowl had strawberries which paired well with the jam but I don’t think they make or break the dish.

I’ve found that it’s best to add a little peanut butter and jelly to the bottom of the bowl before pouring in the hot oats, then adding another dollop to the top. That way you aren’t left with just oats at the end, not the worst thing but let’s be honest, peanut butter tastes better than oats.

IMG 8840 1001x1024 Peanut Butter and Jelly Oats

Peanut Butter and Jelly Oats
Author: 
Recipe type: Breakfast
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1 bowl
 
Peanut butter and jelly oats
Ingredients
  • 1 tablespoon natural peanut butter
  • ½ cup oats of choice (I used quick cooking for this particular recipe but steel cut would be lovely as well)
  • ¾ cup water
  • Dash of salt
  • 1 additional tablespoon peanut butter
  • 1 tablespoon jam of choice
  • 1 banana, sliced
  • Handful of chopped peanuts
Instructions
  1. Place one tablespoon of peanut butter in the bottom of your bowl.
  2. Next mix oats, water and salt together in a pot.
  3. Pour oats over peanut butter.
  4. Add second tablespoon of peanut butter, jam, banana and peanuts to the top of the oats.

Enjoy and Exhale!

facebook Peanut Butter and Jelly Oatstwitter Peanut Butter and Jelly Oatspinterest Peanut Butter and Jelly Oatsdiggit Peanut Butter and Jelly Oatstumblr Peanut Butter and Jelly Oatsstumbleupon Peanut Butter and Jelly Oatsreddit Peanut Butter and Jelly Oatsgoogle Peanut Butter and Jelly Oatsemail Peanut Butter and Jelly Oats

How did another month slip away? What a difference a few weeks makes!

month 2 1024x987 Month Two

months 1 and 2 1024x512 Month Two

We saw some significant changes over the past 4 weeks. She’s such a little lady!

IMG 8818 1024x1024 Month Two

Shortly after I published my Month One post, things started to get a bit easier. I’m not sure if we’re just getting used to being parents or if Noe getting even a day older makes a difference but I definitely feel like we’ve hit a more manageable stride in the past couple of weeks.

IMG 8864 Month Two

Somewhere around 6.5 weeks we thought we were going to lose are minds. Noe was crying every night for hours and nothing seemed to calm her. Our doctor thinks she may have been dealing with some colic, which tends to peak between 6 and 8 weeks before beginning to dissipate. Every night around 5pm she would begin fussing and wouldn’t stop until we got her to bed and by fussing I mean blood curdling screams that can seriously unnerve you.

We decided to give her a pacifier around this time, seeing as we were at our wits end and were willing to try anything. Let me tell you, it made all the difference in those early days. It was a great self soothing tool. When she was overly tired it allowed for some calming which sometimes led to the rare nap. I know there’s a lot of controversy around pacifiers but for us it was incredibly helpful and seeing as she was already a very well established breast feeder, the pros outweighed the cons. She’s not crazy attached to it and can go without it for the majority of the day but it’s a godsend when she’s so tired that she can’t figure out what to do with herself.

I also began pumping this month and a new routine began that has helped our evenings immensely. Around 7pm one of us gives Noe a bath. She continues to absolutely love the water and would probably spend hours in the tub if she could.

IMG 8772 897x1024 Month Two

After her bath it’s daddy baby time.

IMG 8844 1024x1024 Month Two

Michael is bottle feeding her dinner. It’s a really special thing to watch the two of them together. She takes anywhere between 3-5 ounces and then we try to put her down. Sometimes this happens right away, sometimes there’s some walking and rocking involved, sometimes there’s a small feeding by me if she just doesn’t seem satiated enough. Then it’s off to bed. For the past few weeks she’s been going down around 8:30 or 9 and sleeping until somewhere between 4:30 and 6:30. It’s been amazing! There have also been two nights where she’s slept through the night but those were after the 8 week mark.

She continues to love any type of movement, be it the stroller, the ergo, the exercise ball or the car. She tends to sleep in any of the aforementioned places which are our go-to when we can’t get her to rest.

This month also brought her first smiles, coo-ing and what I can only take to assume as a massive improvement in her eye sight. She now looks at everything and follows me with her eyes when she’s in her swing. She’s discovered her hands and puts them in her mouth when she can’t find her binky. It’s probably only a matter of time before she discovers her feet.

IMG 8782 1024x1024 Month Two

We saw lots of family and friends this month as well.

IMG 8705 1024x1024 Month Two

IMG 8816 1024x1024 Month Two IMG 8811 1024x1024 Month Two

And we celebrated her first Easter.

IMG 8813 1024x1024 Month Two

I’m loving how interactive she’s becoming and look forward to more of her adorable smiles.

IMG 8736 Month Two

Personally I am feeling so much more like myself. My hormones have completely leveled out and I feel pretty much back to normal. I am working out 5-6 times a week, alternating between yoga and running. I went back to hot yoga which feels amazing. I’m getting into the swing of running with the stroller…hello arm workout…and with the stroller and the dog! It’s a lot to coordinate but we’re getting the hang of it.

Overall I’m loving watching Noe grow and explore the world around her. The first newborn weeks were tough but everyday is more fun than the last. She’s like a different baby everyday.

Month Two Highlights:

Weight: 10lbs 12 ounces

Likes: being held (no change here), bath time, bouncing on the exercise ball, she also doesn’t mind being changed nearly as much as she used to and doesn’t wail when a shirt goes over her head

Dislikes: nap time (but this is getting better), going back to bed after she wakes up in the morning, daddy’s scratchy face kisses

Can’t live without: her binky, zip up onesies

Favorite Noe-ism: how she opens her mouth whenever we bring a stuffed animal toward her faces for kisses

Exercise: running and yoga

Looking forward to: laughter, more smiles

IMG 8765 1024x1024 Month Two

Cute little baby feet.

Enjoy and Exhale!

facebook Month Two twitter Month Two pinterest Month Two diggit Month Two tumblr Month Two stumbleupon Month Two reddit Month Two google Month Two email Month Two

In the middle of the night when I’m half awake in the rocker, in the corner of the nursery, I count up the hours of sleep I’ve gotten. 10:30pm to 1:15am …1:50am-4:25am…and so it goes. Doing that kind of math in my head, reminds me of my calorie counting days: one yogurt 150, an apple 120 calories. The whole memory of calorie counting, which I did from the middle of high school through college, makes me rather agitated to look back on. It reminds me of such a restrictive and obsessive way of living and honestly, in my case, I think it was more harmful than helpful.

I don’t talk much about weight here and I’ve gone back and forth about whether to mention it at all in this space. You see, like so many others I’ve had my fair share of guilt when it comes to eating and the morphed sense of body image that often accompanies that guilt. So I thought I’d touch briefly on my experience, partly having recently gone through some body changes but also because I’m now the mother of a little girl and I don’t want her to grow up concerned about weight or scales or calories. My wish for her is that she never once thinks to herself, “I’m fat” or “I weight too much”. I will do my damndest not to perpetuate that kind of thinking as she gets older and a big part of that is balancing my own relationship with weight and food.

DSC 0075 1024x792 Weighing In

My primary demon has always been the scale. From an early age I paid way too much attention to it, always aware of the number, getting wrapped up in whether that number was too high, allowing it to effect my day, my mood. I can remember so many scales, from the digital one in my parent’s bathroom to the antiquated hand-me-down in college to the scale my sister and I decided lives in its own reality, always 5-10 lbs heavier than all the other scales. Right before I met Michael my “weighing in” became more obsessive. I’d weigh myself at the gym in the morning, then in the evening at my apartment. I could justify weighing myself once a day, kind of, but twice was overkill.

As luck would have it, I met Michael that spring. As new romances are apt to go, I spent a lot of time at his place in those first few months, which was conveniently lacking in a scale. This might not seem like that big a deal but to someone who was so used to the daily weigh in, there was something so freeing, liberating about waking up in the morning untied from this habit. I didn’t realize the shift at first but as the months went by I found myself less attached to that “number”. I found myself enjoying food more, enjoying exercise more and being less prone to arbitrary “bad” days. The freedom from the scale allowed me to be become more attune to my body’s cues, what I was actually feeling, craving, wanting, as opposed to what the scale told me I should be feeling, craving, wanting.

IMG 7720 1024x1024 Weighing In

Maybe it was coincidence, but it was also around this time that I started reading blogs, primarily vegetarian and vegan blogs focused on whole foods. I became crazy about blogs, and began the annoying habit of leading into a conversation with, “so, I was reading on this blog…”. I was already eating mainly vegetarian by this point, so it wasn’t so much the veggie part I was drawn to, as the idea of whole foods and seasonal eating. I loved the notion of making my own salad dressings, granola bars and juices, exploring new ways of cooking like soaking nuts to make sauces and experimenting with overnight oats, or trying new ingredients like tahini, miso, parsnips, even kale. It was as if a new world had suddenly opened up to me when I let go of the restraints and set my limited view on food free. This freedom was contagious and delicious, adding flavor, spice, joy and a new found balance to my world. This balance made the need to weigh myself everyday less important. I felt better than ever and there was no need for the validation the number led me toward. I simply didn’t care anymore.

And it’s this huge, delicious, guilt free world of food and cooking that I so look forward to sharing with Noe as she gets older. My hope is that through the exploration of different ingredients, cuisines and tastes she learns not put labels on foods as good or bad but instead embraces everything with a sense of experimentation and exploration.

I plan to teach her what I have now found works best for me…moderation. I want her to enjoy that piece of pizza with as much gusto and excitement as she may have for blueberries or broccoli or buckwheat. I know it won’t be an easy feat (and there are so many other factors involved: the media, peers, parts of her own being that I’ll never be able control) but I feel grateful that I’ve been able to restore my own sense of balance so that I can teach her from a place of freedom, not fear.

IMG 6958 1024x1024 Weighing In

As a side, this is not to say that I never buy pre-pacakaged versions of food anymore. I still eat Clif Bars and boxed cereal and have recently become reacquainted with my old friend Hidden Valley Ranch, it’s just not realistic for me to make everything, especially now. Again, it’s all about balance.

Now I know this is a touchy subject and everyone is on their own journey with weight, diet, body image and self acceptance but I wanted to share what has worked so well for me. I do still own a scale, or more accurately, I never threw out the one I had. However, I only weight myself on occasion, not every day. During my pregnancy I decided to only get weighed at my appointments and now that I’m in my postpartum months I’m also only weighing in here and there because I’m very well aware of what a slippery slope it can become. And I rather like being free of that morning “gut check”. I’d rather enjoy my food, respect my body for all it’s done and does for me and not worry about some silly number that has no bearing on who I am.

Enjoy and Exhale!

facebook Weighing Intwitter Weighing Inpinterest Weighing Indiggit Weighing Intumblr Weighing Instumbleupon Weighing Inreddit Weighing Ingoogle Weighing Inemail Weighing In

Over the last few weeks my sweet tooth has gotten a little out of hand. I blame it on the royal dark mini Cadbury eggs. I’m such a sucker for dark chocolate. Surround it in a hard candy shell and I’m a goner. Easter candy aside I’ve also eaten my fair share of peanut butter cups, chocolate chips and oatmeal cookies lately. I’ve heard other moms mention their love of sweets while breastfeeding so I’ve sort of let it slide but after a few weeks of dessert after lunch and dinner I started to feel kind of icky.

The best way for me to push the reset button has never been to deprive myself of certain foods but to simply add more healthy foods in. I find that I’m less apt to crave sweets after a healthy, satisfying lunch. So, the other day I made this big grain and veggie bowl for lunch, but I was tired of my usual dressings.

IMG 8722 1024x1024 Grain and Veggie Bowl with Tahini Balsamic Salad Dressing

With a freshly purchased jar of tahini in the fridge, it just made good sense to try a dressing using it. While searching the pantry I also spied my balsamic dressing peeking out from behind the olive oil and decided to combine the two flavors. And thus this tahini balsamic salad dressing was born.

IMG 8723 1024x1024 Grain and Veggie Bowl with Tahini Balsamic Salad Dressing

I used honey to counterbalance the bitterness of the tahini and some lemon for a little acid. To be fair, I think a bit of the bitterness lingers but I rather like it, especially on this salad.

IMG 8720 1024x1024 Grain and Veggie Bowl with Tahini Balsamic Salad Dressing

This grain and vegetable bowl was a mix of what I had on hand. It included red lentils, cabbage, sweet potato, asparagus, parsnips, carrots, roasted butternut squash and apple. The perfect salad to reset my sugar loving tastebuds but you can add this to any salad you wish.

IMG 8716 961x1024 Grain and Veggie Bowl with Tahini Balsamic Salad Dressing

Tahini Balsamic Salad Dressing
Author: 
Recipe type: Salad Dressing
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1 serving
 
A smooth, rich and tangy salad dressing for your grain and veggie bowls
Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons tahini
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ⅛ white pepper
  • ½ teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • ½ tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • ¼ warm water
Instructions
  1. Place all ingredients except water in a small bowl and combine.
  2. Slowly add the water last to thin out the dressing.
  3. Mix until smooth.

Enjoy and Exhale!

facebook Grain and Veggie Bowl with Tahini Balsamic Salad Dressingtwitter Grain and Veggie Bowl with Tahini Balsamic Salad Dressingpinterest Grain and Veggie Bowl with Tahini Balsamic Salad Dressingdiggit Grain and Veggie Bowl with Tahini Balsamic Salad Dressingtumblr Grain and Veggie Bowl with Tahini Balsamic Salad Dressingstumbleupon Grain and Veggie Bowl with Tahini Balsamic Salad Dressingreddit Grain and Veggie Bowl with Tahini Balsamic Salad Dressinggoogle Grain and Veggie Bowl with Tahini Balsamic Salad Dressingemail Grain and Veggie Bowl with Tahini Balsamic Salad Dressing

Just popping in for a little update. Firstly, thank you for all the comments and words of encouragement from my Month One post. It was so nice to hear from all of you and know that I’m not alone in these first hard weeks.

Every day continues to be an adventure with our little Noe. She definitely has a mind of her own and continues to remind us that she’s in charge. She’s grown so much over the past few weeks, everyone said it would happen but I still can’t believe it. She’s pretty much outgrown all of her newborn clothes, including the onesie we brought her home in, sigh. We still have some newborn diapers hanging around, which she’s also all but grown out of but, man, those things are expensive, so we’re trying to use up each and every one before we really can’t use them anymore.

We’re also waiting on smiles. She’s on the verge and gives a cute little grin when she’s about to fall asleep, kind of like this.

IMG 86601 759x1024 Around Here, Lately

We’re still struggling with naps. She just won’t nap unless she’s in the stroller, the ergo or on top of one of us. By far, her favorite place to sleep is on top of one of us. Case and point…

IMG 8710 1024x1024 Around Here, Lately IMG 8713 1024x1024 Around Here, Lately IMG 8692 1024x1024 Around Here, Lately IMG 8690 1024x1024 Around Here, Lately

I’m rarely able to put her in the swing or crib during the day. My body is definitely feeling the effects with soreness in my back and right side.

I love holding her but it makes for days where very little, besides reading, gets done. That’s also why it’s been so quiet around here, it’s hard to blog with one hand and cooking has been nearly impossible. I hate to admit this but dinners have been really sub par lately. By the time we actually get her down, it’s usually fairly late. The minute we close her bedroom door there’s the mad scramble to feed ourselves. Dinners have been a lot of steamed veggies with baked sweet potatoes, frozen entrees, sandwiches, cereal (it didn’t stop after pregnancy), and more pizza then I care to admit.

The other thing that happened for the first time earlier this week…we just didn’t eat dinner! Our neighbors, who also have a new baby, invited us over for a glass of wine the other night. By the time we got home and did the evening routine, it was 9:45. We both looked at one another, asked what was for dinner, shrugged and then cuddled up together on the couch and promptly fell asleep. By the time we woke up in the middle of the night, confused and exhausted, we just gave up. Sleep officially won out over food! I think that’s the first time ever. We’ve both vowed not to let it happen again though.

I did manage to make one amazing dinner last week, cauliflower chickpea korma. It was SO good, recipe coming soon.

IMG 8686 768x1024 Around Here, Lately

I’ve also made this vegan caesar salad from Oh She Glows about ten times now. It’s delicious.

IMG 8698 1024x1024 Around Here, Lately

As for me, I feel better and better each day. I am feeling much more emotionally stable, that sounds bad, but my hormones have definitely leveled out in the last two weeks and dealing with the chaos of a newborn feels more manageable now that I’m not a wreck and on the verge of tears every two seconds. There are still moments but not nearly as bad as before.

The weather has been great so we’ve continued to get out for walks, by ourselves or with friends, pretty much every day.

IMG 8658 768x1024 Around Here, Lately

IMG 8700 1024x1024 Around Here, Lately

I’m looking forward to getting back to yoga, hopefully next week, if my doctor gives the okay tomorrow. As much as I love walking and running, it’s time to get back in touch with my core. icon smile Around Here, Lately

IMG 0045 768x1024 Around Here, Lately IMG 0051 768x1024 Around Here, Lately

That’s it for now. Noe had a rare nap in the swing while I wrote this and I made the most of it by blogging and cooking up some rice, lentils and roasted butternut squash for easy dinners. I’m going to see if I can’t make a few more things while she’s down…pushing my luck but what can you do?

IMG 8708 Around Here, Lately

Enjoy and Exhale!

facebook Around Here, Latelytwitter Around Here, Latelypinterest Around Here, Latelydiggit Around Here, Latelytumblr Around Here, Latelystumbleupon Around Here, Latelyreddit Around Here, Latelygoogle Around Here, Latelyemail Around Here, Lately

I don’t know if these kinds of posts are of interest to readers, I do see some subscribers unsubscribe with what I’m assuming is disinterest in all this baby talk but this blog has always been an extension of my daily life and I can’t deny that it is all about the baby right now.

IMG 8660 768x1024 Month One

This has been a long and short month. I’m not really sure how exactly to explain it but life has a way of feeling long and short, easy and hard, tiring and exhilarating, all at the same time right now.  I can’t believe the love I feel for this little creature. A lot of hours are lost just staring at her and we spend a lot of time cuddled up together, especially in the late afternoons, while I put my itunes on shuffle and sing her old country songs.

Being home with a newborn has definitely been challenging, especially surrendering to the fact that there is no routine right now. The past two weeks of being on my own with Noe all day have been difficult to say the least. This is the ultimate practice of yoga. Being in the moment, establishing the union of mother and child, shedding old perceptions of myself, letting go of vanity-filled thoughts, practicing selflessness and patience on a whole new level.

I won’t lie, there have been some seriously tough moments these past few weeks. I think everyone in our house is sleep deprived and a bit on edge, including Eli and Guy.

IMG 8609 1024x768 Month OneIMG 8654 1024x1024 Month One

Noe is a baby that likes to be held. She sleeps okay at night but it’s nearly impossible to get her down for a nap during the day unless she’s on top of me. Maybe I’m being a softie but I really can’t stand listening to her high pitched cries for very long so most of the time I’m holding her. Right now I’m typing this with one hand while cradling her in the other. Needless to say writing this has taken a long time.

Watching Noe change a little bit every day makes me excited for all the things to come. I am clinging to these first few weeks when she’s so little and soft and warm and fits so perfectly in the crook of my neck with her chubby little cheek pressed against my shoulder.

IMG 8645 938x1024 Month One

But I look forward to seeing her smile and really recognizing us. Right now I don’t think she really sees anything except my nipple, haha.

I’ve never felt so raw and emotionally uncovered before. Postpartum hormones are no joke, add the lack of sleep and I feel like a crazy person. Poor Michael has to deal with all my crazy while also working insane hours the past few weeks as he preps for a pitch later this week.

The first night home after the hospital I cried. Big, hot tears rolled down my face as I sat on our couch in our new house with our new baby. I was overwhelmed with the idea of being a mom and also my own recovery. It’s sort of a cruel joke played by the universe. Here you are having gone through one of the most physically grueling things your body will ever be put through (God willing) and instead of getting rest, you’re given sleep deprivation. We had an in-home nurse visit us the day after we came home. After taking a look at Noe she checked me out and asked how I was doing. I said alright but she could see the raw emotions in my eyes and promptly gave me some sound advice to make sure I get outside for at least 5 minutes a day. She told me to put my face up to the sun and soak in a little vitamin D, that it would do wonders and it has.IMG 8559 1024x1024 Month One

Physically I’m feeling more and more like myself every day. The first week I started walking a little bit and have gradually upped the mileage. This week my sister was here and we did a pretty fast 2.5 mile walk. It’s a definite improvement from day 6 when I walked with my mom to Panera’s (about 5 blocks away) and was absolutely spent afterward. I’m so impressed by the body’s way of healing. And I’m very much looking forward to getting back to running again in a few weeks.IMG 8668 1024x1024 Month One

I know I’m rambling, but honestly there so much more I could talk about. Being a mom is legitimately the hardest job I’ve ever had. It’s 24/7. Apologies to all my girlfriends who’ve had kids before me. I didn’t realize how hard things were in those first few weeks. I should have texted more often to check in, or called, or visited to hold your baby for a few minutes while you folded laundry, took an extra long shower or ate lunch with both hands. I had no idea, seriously, none, You’re all bad asses!

Month One Highlights:

Weight: not totally sure but guessing around 9lbs

Likes: being held, eating, the stroller, the car, baths (especially getting her hair washed), music

Dislikes: naps, getting changed (especially putting on a new diaper), the noise the dog’s tags make when he shakes his head

Can’t live without: halo swaddles, a million burp clothes, newborn onesies (it was surprisingly hard to find long sleeved newborn onesies, especially with zippers instead of snaps)

Favorite Noe-ism: when she’s sleeping and a noise startles her she throws both hands in the air with her palms toward her face like an old Italian man yelling at a car or unruly teenager

Exercise: Walking every day

Looking forward to: running, warmer days, my morning tea and breakfast, seeing her genuinely smile at us

I guess that’s it. There’s a crying baby that needs attending to now.

Enjoy and Exhale!

pixel Month One
facebook Month Onetwitter Month Onepinterest Month Onediggit Month Onetumblr Month Onestumbleupon Month Onereddit Month Onegoogle Month Oneemail Month One