Tag Archives: new baby

Final Pregnancy Journal Post: A Surprise Hello!

A friend of mine took some great belly photos at my Blessingway last weekend, and I had intended to use them for my 37 week journal entry.

…BUT, it seems that baby girl had other plans!

She arrived like a whirlwind on Feb. 7th. What a day! We’re babymooning for a little while, but stay tuned for our birth story, coming soon!

Until then, I’d like to introduce our newest little nursling, Baby E!

:) :) :) :) :) :) :)

 

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Filed under Baby Guide, Parenting & Family, Uncategorized

One Whole Year Event Day 3: HappyBaby!

Welcome to Day 3 of my One Whole Year Giveaway Event! (Remember, to enter you must visit the original One Whole Year giveaway post, and complete the mandatory entry first. ALL extra entries must also appear on THAT post!)

So far, I’ve announced 2 prizes in the package:

  • One Kawaii Minky Bamboo one size cloth diaper in the new olive green color
  • The in-stock baltic amber teething necklace of your choice from Inspired by Finn!

Are you excited yet? :D

Today’s featured sponsor is HappyBaby!

We love HappyBaby products in our house. Yes, I make a lot of our baby food, but when I do buy it, I always buy organic and I love love love to find unique varieties to feed my son. I’m a firm believer in introducing lots of different tastes and ingredients early on to develop a broad palate, and HappyBaby helps me do that!

Mama Grain with quinoa, banana and black beans? Banana, beet and blueberry? Yes, please!

By far, our favorite product from HappyBaby is the Organic Puffs. We NEVER leave home without them, and the sight of a puff cures most cranky moments in an instant. Sure, lots of companies make puffs. They’re pretty simple, but HappyBaby’s puffs are organic,  contain 1/2 the sugar of many of the other leading brands, are made with whole grains and come in BPA-free containers that are sourced through a green partnership with Method.

By NOT using pesticides, chemical fertilizers, or genetically engineered ingredients, HappyBaby supports sustainable agriculture, so I support them. :) Be sure to check out even more reasons to love HappyBaby, including their work with Project Peanut Butter and how your purchase helps feed children in Malawi, on their Our Promise to You page.

The Prize? I’m getting to that… ;)

HappyBaby has generously offered my lucky One Whole Year winner a copy of their book, HappyBaby: The Organic Guide to Baby’s First 24 Months! (Written by Dr. Sears.) This book is full of answers to all the important questions about feeding baby, and your whole family, well. It also addresses living a greener lifestyle and making your home healthy. Inside, you’ll even find over $100 in coupons!

But that’s not all. My winner will also receive a set of FREE trial coupons for HappyBaby products, a nutrition guide and HappyBaby recipes! 8O

Not bad, eh? Thanks, HappyBaby!

For an extra entry into the One Whole Year giveaway: Visit HappyBaby’s website and leave me a comment on the original One Whole Year post letting me know what you like about HappyBaby! Good luck and thanks for celebrating with us!

**Make sure to complete the mandatory entry first! Mandatory entry and ALL extra entries must appear on the original One Whole Year post! (NO entry comments on this post, please!)

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Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of the HappyBaby Organic Guide for review purposes. All other products mentioned were purchased by me and are used in my household. I was not compensated for my review and all opinions are my own based on personal experience with the product.
Sorry, this contest open to US residents only (Please note: My EcoMom giveaway is open to residents of US and Canada!) Entries will be accepted through 11/18. I will choose a winner via Random.org on 11/19. Winner will be contacted via email (please leave your email address!)  and will have 48 hours to respond and claim prize package or a new winner will be chosen.

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Filed under Cloth Diapering, Green Living, Parenting & Family, Product & Service Reviews

Ugly food needs love, too…

I read a lot of blog posts that inspire me, but every once in a while one really gets inside my head and takes root…

That’s what happened when I read a certain chocolate-covered post about embracing your makeup-free self. I read Katie’s words, and posted my half-face makeup-free picture, and felt pretty good about it. 

But then I got a little crazy…

You see, my birthday is on Monday and it’s got me feeling a little introspective. I’ve been thinking a lot about my age, my new role as a mother, my goals and my achievements, the fact that the body I’ve struggled with for so long now nourishes another body, and what it means to be ?? years old. So, with those things and Katie’s challenge mingling in my head, I decided to do the unthinkable…

I went to work with. no. makeup.
8O

You heard me.

And get this–nobody even noticed. At least I don’t think they did. Nobody said anything.

While this may not be a big deal to many, it was a major big deal for me. As someone who spent years dealing with cystic acne, I know what it’s like to cake on makeup and panic at the mere hint of forgetting my compact at home on the bathroom counter. 

I know what it’s like to wear my long hair down in the middle of a 100º summer day because I don’t want to uncover all the glaring imperfections.

I know what it’s like when even a gentle touch on my skin causes sharp, searing pain.

And, for some reason I do not understand, I now know what it’s like when that all goes away. Maybe it’s because my stress levels have gone down, maybe it’s because of the hormonal changes that happened during my pregnancy, maybe it’s because I’ve all but given up processed foods, and maybe it’s a combination of all the positive lifestyle changes I’ve made, but I don’t deal with anything more than the occasional minor blemish now.

And this past week, when we had 4 or 5 days of 100º+ weather, I wore my hair up. :D

And this got me thinking even further…

I always try to put my best food forward on my blog, but sometimes the healthiest, tastiest and most satisfying meals just don’t have a whole lot of eye appeal. I’m sure you’ve all been there–working and creating in the kitchen only to produce an edible creation that, visually, is less than blog-worthy and photographs like a big pile of yuck. Or maybe, you just don’t glam your food up for the camera every single time you eat. (If that is the case, good for you. Blogging can creep in and take over…)

In the spirit of loving ourselves unadorned and unembellished, and accepting our natural beauty and intrinsic worth, I’d like to show a little  love to some of the “swept-under-the-proverbial-carpet” unblog food of the past few weeks.

I’m warning ya: it ain’t fancy, but it sure is functional.

Charcoal grilled burgers…SUNSHINE burgers, in fact. Can you believe it? Would you ever have guessed they were Sunshine Burgers? Nope. I bet you wouldn’t have guessed that they tasted fantastic, too! Nothing beats the smoky mesquite-y taste of food on a charcoal grill, except maybe that same charcoal-grilled food eaten with good friends…

And a whole wheat wrap filled with the leanest pulled pork you’ll ever see, some mango, a little pineapple chipotle salsa, and brown rice. 

Photogenic? No way. Healthy and deeeeelish? You betcha!

Since I often delete ugly food pics without a second thought, I don’t have very many. But I’m thinking that may have to change. The unpretties have served me well, and they, too, deserve their time to shine!

I salute you and appreciate you, ugly food, and from here on out I vow that you will have a permanent place on my blog, although not every day;)

I encourage all of you bloggers out there to share the love for less-than-perfect-looking food! Go back through your photo files and post those pics that didn’t make it the first time around!

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Filed under Recipes & Food, The Everyday

Date Night Snack Plate

Wow…what a day. I was up and at ‘em at 5am, getting ready to go peddle my goods at my parents’ yard sale. Business could have been better, but I made enough to cover my next shipment of cloth diapers! :D

We did a little visiting at an old friend’s house after the yard sale wrapped up, then headed home around 8pm with a very sleepy baby. He zonked in no time, leaving a little bit of time for mommy and daddy to sit and breathe. The perfect opportunity to break out some of the fun finds from our last shopping excursion! (Many of which required me to put my disdain for dairy on hold for the evening. I’m telling you, I don’t even miss most of it, but that darned cheese gets me every time…)

The husbo set to work poppin’ corks while I started assembling a happy snack platter for us to graze on while watching some random whatever on TV. Have I mentioned that we used to do this a lot when we first started dating? Despite all that’s changed, I guess some things stay the same, and we still like our foodsploration!  Do I mind that our date night isn’t fancier, or spent out on the town? Nope…not one bit. I love knowing that my son is safe and snuggly in the next room. Wouldn’t have it any other way, or at least not yet, anyway.

The array of tidbits included: 

One apple and a few Medjool dates (SUCH a treat!)…

Jicama slices, sprinkled with lime juice and an individually packed teaspoon of organic chile pepper…

And finally, a lovely cheese trio: some heavenly cheddar curds, a sharp New York cheddar, and my new favorite…

A French cheese called Mimolette. It’s dry and tangy, and if you like to pair cheese with fresh apples, you’ve GOT to try this one!

It’s a little ugly on the outside…

until you get to know it. :D

A healthier-than-usual pour of this Hunter’s Valley Berry Mountain Red

Not too fancy, not too sweet – just the way I like it.

Did I mention it’s a local wine? Two woots for buying local!

I was wishing we had some fresh berries to cap off the evening, but there were none to be found.

But we did have… *drumroll please*… Chocolate (What else?) in the form of 70% cacao dark chocolate covered cocoa nibs!

Nice and bitter, barely sweet. I must have these sprinkled over vanilla bean coconut milk ice cream, or maybe vegan banana soft serve. 

Just a few, though. It’s a rare occasion when the entire ABCGP family has the opportunity to sleep late in the morning, and I wouldn’t want anything to mess with my much-needed Zzzzz’s!

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Imagine your perfect snack plate…what’s on it?

What’s your favorite cheese?

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Filed under Recipes & Food, The Everyday

Local, seasonal food hits the spot!

It’s been a rough week. The best medicine? Local, seasonal, freshly prepared food from Emma’s Food for Life in Selinsgrove!

You know the conversation…

“What do you want for dinner?”

“I don’t know…what do you want for dinner?”

“I don’t care. Whatever you want.”

and so on, and so on…

We were fully engaged in that back and forth last night when we drove by Emma’s and I remembered that I had seen Lemon Quinoa on their specials board outside. I figured it would feature peas and asparagus, because that is what’s in season here right now, and it did.

I just may turn into a pea with the way I’ve been eating lately, but I guess that’s what eating local, seasonal produce is all about, right? If peas are in season, you eat a lot of peas.

So Emma’s it was, and it did not disappoint.

She: Lemon Quinoa (a thick, warm, creamy quinoa in a lemony sauce that reminded me of risotto! Comfort food at its finest. It had lots of greens, peas and asparagus. Sadly, it promised to come with a side of cabbage and beet salad, which was nowhere to be found :( ) It did, however, come with a little green side salad. I chose the lemon tahini dressing (not my favorite, by far )  The husbo chose the cilantro lime dressing, so I stole that :twisted:

Accompanying my dinner is some organic Mother’s Milk tea from Traditional Medicinals…it tastes like strong anise, which I despise, but it came highly recommended and I need the help right now in strengthening my supply. It tasted just a little better in my new W mug (a gift from my thoughtful husband!)

I poached us each a piece of salmon for a little extra sumthin’, and it was pretty tasteless until we realized we could dip it in the dressing. Cilantro Lime Salmon, coming right up!

He: The hus chose the whole wheat fettucine with bacon, peas and asparagus. It was really good…I had a bite with bacon in it, and I wanted to eat the whole thing! I guess there’s just no denying the seductive qualities of bacon. The one bite was enough, though…I don’t plan on becoming a bacontarian.

BIG portion!

 

These dishes didn’t really lend themselves well to pretty pictures, but they were delicious! I inhaled mine. Just what we needed on a night when I was exhausted, still a little concerned about my health, and not wanting to settle for any kind of fast food. (Sadly, we were left with a mountain of styrofoam containers. I was surprised to see that from a restaurant like Emma’s. Surely they could find recycled cardboard…)

Our boy joined in the feast with his new favorite…avocado! I’ve given this to him a couple of times now, and he just devours it! I always seem to have just a little left over whenever I use one, so this will work out perfectly! This was the most perfect avocado I’ve ever cut into (like BUTTAH!) and he said, “Mmmmmm….” with each bite.

Mortared and pestled…

Next time, we combine the ‘cado with a nanner. 

Newsflash: I’ve decided to cave a little on my dairy weirdness and eat some yogurt. I need calories, protein and calcium right now more than ever, and you just can’t beat the nutritients in Greek yogurt, so I looked up my old friend Fage….

This sucker comes with a lot of honey! I amped it up with a little Granbiotics granola and some walnuts…

I had forgotten how good this stuff is…

I’d go so far as to call this the perfect bite!

I guess a little yogurt now and then won’t hurt anything. But no fruity-bottomed ones, and you won’t catch me with a glass of milk in this lifetime, either…

Now, off to get groceries and skedaddle home to my boys. Last time I was in the store, I heard Jive Talkin’! I hope there’s a fun playlist today…I love grocery shopping!

Have a great Sunday, all!

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What’s in season now where you live? Have you had your fill of it yet?

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Filed under Product & Service Reviews, Recipes & Food, The Everyday