Friday, May 27, 2011

Rhubarb Sauce

This is one of my favorite summer treats!  My mom made this when I was growing up and it was so good I would eat it all on it's own, but it's delicious served over vanilla ice cream.

  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 3 cups thinly sliced rhubarb (about 6 stalks)
  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. pure vanilla
  • in large skillet, melt butter over medium-high heat
  • stir in rhubarb, sugar, and vanilla
  • continue to cook, stirring constantly, until tender, 5-10 minutes
  • serve warm over vanilla ice cream

Friday, May 20, 2011

How Does Your Garden Grow?

I know that it hasn't been the nicest spring day today, but it's quite an improvement from our weather a month ago...
While not much is blooming, it's a vast improvement!

I planted some pansies.
 The peonies are growing fast!
The raspberries are coming in...
and the rhubarb is almost prime for the picking.  (I predict some rhubarb sauce in our near future!)
 I even spotted a iris bud!

Happy Spring!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Cranberry Walnut Quinoa Salad

This was one of my favorite recipes to make and bring for lunches when I was working and, in an effort to be more healthy, I made a batch on Sunday.  It has been a perfect quick meal option this week!

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 1 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 cup fresh green beans, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1/4 cup walnuts, chopped
  • 1/4 cup green onions, sliced
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • combine quinoa with 2 cups of water and bring to a boil over high heat
  • reduce heat to a simmer and cover
  • continue cooking until all water is absorbed
  • in a medium bowl, combine cooked quinoa, dried cranberries, green beans, walnuts, and green onions until well mixed
  • in a small bowl, whisk the balsamic vinegar, olive oil, and garlic until well blended
  • pour dressing over the quinoa mixture
  • toss until well blended
  • season with salt and pepper to taste
  • chill in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes before serving

Saturday, May 7, 2011

2 Months!

My dear Jackson, you are now 2 months old!  Your daddy and I feel so lucky that we were blessed with such a sweet little baby.  You really have been easy on us.  The biggest change we've seen over the past month has been SLEEP!  For the past month or so you've been consistently sleeping from about 10pm to 4am.  Mommy and Daddy are very excited to be getting 6 hour stretches of sleep most nights.  Every once in a while you'll even sleep for 7 or 8 hours (the first time this happened I felt like a new woman)!  How did we get so lucky?!

You continue to grow like a weed.  You have your 2 month check-up on Monday, so we'll get the official word on your measurements then, but according to our estimates you now weigh about 11.5 pounds and are 22 inches long!  You've also started to grow out of some of your newborn clothes.  Mommy got a little (okay a lot) choked up when she put away the clothes that are too small for you now...

Over the past week or so you have really started to smile (not just gas pains, but actual smiles)!!  You are especially smiley after a nap or after you've eaten (aren't we all).  You also love to smile at yourself in the mirror above your swing.  Here are a few of your many varieties of smile...

the semi-smile:

the smirk:

and (my favorite) the mega-watt smile:

We started a new mama class at Amma Maternity a few weeks ago.  There are 8 other new moms in our class, all with babies 8 weeks or younger.  I think you enjoy the class as much as I do because you are the only boy!  You have made a very good impression on all the little girls in the class (except for your noisy toots and belches).  I would highly recommend this to any first time mommy!  It's a wonderfully supportive environment and I have learned all sorts of tips from how to increase my "flow" (herbs, breast massage, and a hand free bustier if you must know), to soothing a cranky baby, to increasing sleep, etc... 

In hopes of increasing your tolerance for tummy time, we bought you an activity mat with all sorts of bells and whistles...  You love it, but unfortunately only when you're lying on your back....  Oh, well mommy doesn't mind if she always has to carry you around : )

This month has brought many more "firsts."  You had your first two babysitters.  Grandma Hacker came to our house and watched you while daddy and I went to Bar La Grassa for my birthday.  It was hard for us to leave you, but we knew you were in great hands.  Then, just a couple of days ago, we brought you to Grandma White's house and daddy and I went out to dinner at the Nicollet Island Inn.  We were having so much fun that, after dinner, we called grandma to see if we could go have a night cap.  She told us that you were being just an angel and that we didn't ever have to come home...  You also had your very first Easter.  The Easter bunny brought you a Peter Rabbit book, a little wind-up ducky, and (best of all) sparkly bunny ears!!  (Although, from the looks of it, you did not appreciate this gift as much as I did...)

Last, but not least, I officially resigned from my job so that I can focus on the most important job of all- raising you!

Happy two months peanut!
Love, Mom