Tuesday, February 28, 2012

And Then There Were Three

Well, he's here! Meezy and I welcomed our son into the world on Feb 23rd at 1:50pm. Jameson Dutch weighed a whopping 9lbs, 10oz and measured 20 3/4 inches at birth. There's absolutely no question that he's his father's son, and I couldn't be happier about that! (Hey, if I fell in love with his dad, wouldn't I also fall in love with his mini-me version??)  He was delivered by caesarean section (and after hearing his weight, we were thankful for that) and the procedure went very smoothly.  There's no doubt recovery ain't easy with this route, but if it saved one minute of trauma for my child, then we made the right decision.  We had so many sweet visitors while we were in the hospital, and I couldn't be more thankful for our loving friends and family.  I also appreciate those who understood when we asked them to wait until we got home to visit because we needed some sleep and down time after seeing how little we would get in the hospital.  From waking up on Thursday morning at 8am, to being discharged from the hospital at 3pm on Sunday, I got a total of less than 10 hours of sleep.  It's an exhausting experience, and if I could do it all over, I would actually try to follow the "sleep when he sleeps" mantra.  Granted, that wouldn't be entirely possible because you're constantly being interrupted by different nurses and doctors during your stay, but I definitely could've done a better job of it.  You live and learn!   

Here are pics from our first moments with him, our time in the hospital, and happenings in the subsequent days.  I couldn't be any more in love with my son!
















     

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

40 Weeks

LAST pregnancy photo!  Looking forward to meeting my son for the first time tomorrow.  :)

Due Date

Clerk at Discount Tire: "When's your due date?"

Me: "Today"

Clerk: "You're here getting your tire fixed, on your due date?!?"

Ha, yeah. I'm kinda weird like that. Stuff has to get done, right??

Monday, February 20, 2012

Meezy's Choice

Meezy likes Indian food, so Monday's dinner was his selection.  We made Indian-spiced chicken pitas from this recipe.  It calls for garam masala seasoning, but I couldn't find that anywhere.  So, we googled what a substitute for that could be and found this mixture:

1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp crumbled bay leaves
1/8 tsp ground cloves

It tasted great on the broiled chicken!  Here's what our end result looked like:

  
It tasted so fresh and we both were really full after eating two pita halves.  

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Sunday Baking Funday

If you hadn't noticed, I haven't given birth yet, so I decided to spend all day Sunday baking up some fun stuff to pass the time and provide us some sustenance for a couple days.

1. Red Velvet Cream Cheese Ball
Meezy loves red velvet anything, so he jumped at the chance to try this recipe.  It tastes pretty good, and the prep is easy.  The hard part is just the waiting while it chills in the refrigerator!  The chocolate chips overpowered the red velvet taste just a little bit on the initial bites, but once you got past the top layer, it was red velvety awesomeness.  We used Nilla wafers as our dipper of choice, and they were perfect for the job.  (Forgive my crappy pictures - I didn't feel like getting the good camera out of the hospital bag)  

 


2. Pepperoni Rolls
I saw a picture of these and definitely wanted to try them.  We couldn't find the frozen dough necessary at Walmart, and we luckily got the last package that Kroger had.  They had to sit out to defrost and rise for about 6 hours before they were ready for use, so you have to make sure to start that step early in the day.  We rolled the loaves out as instructed, but I think we should've rolled them even thinner because after cooking, the bread in the very middle wasn't as cooked as the dough on the outside.  We ended up cutting each pepperoni roll into slices and then putting them back in the oven for more cooking.  That worked!  I recommend a dipping sauce to go along with them, like marina or garlic butter.  Here are pictures of the process:






   
3. Garlic Parmesan Knots
I know I've mentioned this recipe before, but I just can't resist it.  It's super easy, and it's great with a lot of different meals.



And, the piece de resistance:

4. Pioneer Woman Cinnamon Rolls
These take quite a while to make, and require a lot of ingredients, but sweet mother - they are worth it!  I got the idea from my friend, Kari, who brought a batch over to us a couple months ago.  They are addictive, and probably the best kind of cinnamon rolls you'll ever taste!  This particular recipe makes a ton of rolls, so the idea is that you share them with friends and family.  You can freeze them and then once delivered, the recipient just bakes them for 20-30 minutes in the oven before eating.  They taste just as good as when originally made!  Here are pictures of the process:  (doesn't the last one make your mouth water?!?)








Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Tuesday Dinner

I know yesterday was Valentine's Day, but really it was just another Tuesday in my household!  Meezy and I aren't big on celebrating this "holiday" because it doesn't mean anything special to our relationship or to our personal lives.  I think we do a pretty good job of showing how much we love each other on a daily basis, so there's no special incentive to do it up big on this one day.  So, with that said, for Tuesday dinner I made us some yummy healthy-ish taco salads, followed by some very not healthy chocolate chip lava cookies.  I got the cookie recipe from here.

Observations/Results:

I opted to use store-bought chocolate chip cookie dough instead of making it from scratch, and I really underestimated how much I should get.  I mean, the amount was fine for 2 people, but if you're planning on making it for a group or having leftovers, get a large roll/tub of cookie dough.  I started putting out the first layer of dough into the muffin pan, and I only made it to about 6 before realizing I had already used half the roll.  I melted the chocolate chips (and also melted some white chocolate chips to see how that would taste) and poured a layer of the chocolate over my cookies in the pan.  Then I went through to put the second layer of cookie dough on.  I think you need to put more cookie dough on the top than you did on the bottom, because mine came out sunken in, more so than the pictures on the recipe.  If you use white chocolate too, like I did, you'll notice that it thickens up a lot quicker than the milk chocolate, so you've got to make sure not to microwave it for too long, and then you'll need to use it quickly in the preparation.  The white chocolate is going to come out a little harder and less lava-like after the baking, but it's still going to taste pretty darn good.  I put vanilla bean ice cream on top of mine, and Meezy ate his plain.  We both agreed they were quite delicious!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Push Present

My sweet hubby told me he was planning on getting me a "push present" this month, but that he was having trouble finding something to match his original intention.  He let me in on the plan so I could help search and/or decide if it's something I really wanted.  Since our kiddo will be born in February, and the birthstone is amethyst, he planned on buying me a watch that had a purple stone in it, or had a purple dial.  That way I could have a daily reminder on my wrist of our little bundle of joy.  We looked around at purple watches, and just really didn't see anything that appealed to us.  There was either way too much purple (not my style), or the shade of purple wasn't appealing.  As an alternative, we decided we would open up the search to include orange watches.  Orange is the national color of Holland, and since that's where my family is from and we're naming our son Dutch, it would still serve as an appropriate homage.  (Plus, orange is one of my favorite colors).

Unfortunately, our search didn't get any easier!  Orange is apparently way more popular to use in men's watches.  Of course I could find awesome looking ones from Tag Heuer, Tissot, and Swatch, but they were too big to work for a woman's wrist.  I have google searched from here to the end of the Internets, and visited at least 20 stores.  I don't really want the entire watch to be orange.  I'd like the dial and/or face to be orange, with a silver bracelet strap, or an orange strap with a silver/diamond face.  That is super hard to find.  I finally gave in this past weekend and purchased this Michele watch, but I brought it home and Meezy wasn't feeling it.  It's just too much orange (and really kind of a tangerine orange) and the strap looks kinda cheap.  I agreed, so I returned it.

While I was at Neiman Marcus though, they told me they didn't have any watches with an orange face or dial, but I spotted this orange Brera strap in a case and asked what faces it could go with:

   
I picked one out and they assembled it for me, and this is what it looked like:


Hmmmmm, that looks pretty good.  It's got a mother of pearl dial, surrounded by diamonds, but it's yellow gold.  I just don't know if I can spend that much on something that's yellow gold.  I've always been a much bigger fan of silver and/or white gold.  They have the same face in silver:

  
But the problem is that the little doohickeys you see above and below the face are part of the strap, and the orange strap in the store came with yellow gold clasps.  Arrggg!  The clerk said she'd call the company and find out if they make the orange strap with silver clasps and get back to me.  In the meantime, I headed home and went to Brera's website to do some research.  Turns out they do make the orange strap with silver clasps, and it's actually cheaper to buy directly from the retailer online!  What, what?  Looks like we finally found a winner for my push present, but now I'm in the "should I really spend that much money on a watch?" phase of the process.  In other words, I haven't purchased it yet.  It's hard to pull the trigger on something like this - I don't need it; it's kind of indulgent; I'm about to have a baby, etc.  I can think of all sorts of reasons why it's probably not smart to buy it right now.  But, on the other hand, there's my hubby telling me that he wants to buy me a nice watch when I have the baby, and I should just do it already.  Pbbbt.  Indecisiveness sucks.  

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Replacement Purse

I mentioned previously that my dog, Riley, destroyed my beloved green Michael Kors purse a couple weeks ago.  He's lucky he's so darn cute because that's a pretty serious offense.  That purse was my favorite for pairing with brown-themed outfits, and there was definitely a void left after I could no longer use it.  I've searched around for a replacement and haven't been able to find the exact one in stores anymore, or even another green purse that suited my fancy.  While I was watch-shopping yesterday at Saks Off Fifth (they're having an awesome sale through Tuesday, btw), I wandered over to the purse section and came across this Kate Spade beauty:

 
It's the shade of green I like, and it makes me yearn for the spring and summer weather!  It was an amazingly good deal, so I snatched it up.  It's not as fancy as the one it's replacing, but it'll definitely work.  I couldn't resist taking a picture of it with the storage bag it came with because when I brought it home, Meezy said, "It comes with a bag to store your bag???"  Haha, boys. 

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Dinner Ideas

I've started to get into pinterest a little bit lately.  I'm not so great at posting my own pins, but I like to peruse what other people are posting and get ideas from them.  There's lots of recipes shared on the site every day, so I decided to grab a couple and attempt them for dinner tonight.  I tried Slow Cooker Chicken Parmesan with Penne Pasta and Easy Parmesan Knots.

Observations/Results:


 Chicken Parmesan - instead of plain bread crumbs and separate Italian seasoning, I just used Italian seasoned bread crumbs; even at low temp, mine didn't need to set in the slow cooker for more than 4 hours.  I noticed that the bread crumbs didn't stay on the chicken very well, but since they ended up being all in the mix, you still got the flavor.  It tasted pretty good on top of the penne pasta.


Parmesan Knots - these were super easy to make; make sure to brush the topping mixture over a lot of the biscuit, otherwise you won't get a lot of the flavor; it helps to put them back in the oven for just a couple minutes after brushing, so that the topping bakes in.  These were quite delicious! 

Friday, February 3, 2012

Almost There

I'm over 37 weeks now, but this pic was taken at 36 weeks, when we were celebrating some friends' birthdays at III Forks.


Are we there yet??  I'm growing pretty impatient!  Can't wait for our little guy to make his appearance.  He'll be here sometime in the next 2-3 weeks.  Stay tuned!