Dec 19, 2011

No Babies Yet

Don't worry- I have not given birth- just been showered, chili-ed, renovated, and worked to the bone.  I can't wait to catch up with everyone as soon as I catch my breath (it's a bit difficult since this baby is pushing my lungs up into my throat!).

Dec 9, 2011

Now I am Iced Over

No baby yet, thank goodness- just a lot of 10-12 hour days at work.  Between that and sleeping, there is no time for blogging, tweeting or catching up with my favorite reads.  Once I crawl out from my pile of work, I will be back with movie reviews, shower pictures, and nursery!

Nov 30, 2011

Snowed Under!

Thankfully there is no actual snow- I believe that this will be the first year of my existence in which I am actively wishing for a clear Christmas season and NO SNOW (oh, and definitely no ice).  Anyway, I have been chugging along- it's our busiest time of year at work, our mudroom renovation is in full swing, and I have been gearing up for the social whirlwind of December.

We had a lovely Thanksgiving sitting at the "kids' table" at Lou and Gaines' family's meal.  Thanks for letting us join y'all!  Side note- although chicken is still extremely distasteful to me, turkey was delicious.

Of course the minute my favorite late fall moment is over, the dash to Christmas begins (cue whining about can't we just enjoy each moment, etc.).  I must get on my high horse for a moment and protest all that "Black Friday" has become.  There were horror stories nationally, involving death and pepper spray, but more telling to me was a quote in the local paper from a woman who went to Target or Kohl's at midnight on Thanksgiving. When asked if she was offended by big retailers opening on Thanksgiving, she stated, "It doesn't offend me because it doesn't affect me. It does affect the employees, but if I can save $10, I can save $10."  I'm not even going to comment, as I am avoiding raising my blood pressure. (BUT PEOPLE ARE SO TACKY!!!!)

Let's see, what else is happening?  I have my big shower here this weekend and am tickled to death!  Then my "adult" shower is in a couple weeks after that- hopefully this nursery will finally come together- I'm feeling woefully behind (especially with all the Braxton Hicks contractions I've been having- little reminders to get moving, so if this baby is as prompt or early as his/her mama, I will be prepared). 

Also coming up?  My family's annual chili extravaganza!  I redesigned the invites this year since there is a new hostess with the mostess that will be wearing some antlers!

Can you decipher my depictions of myself, my SIL and my mama?  (Hint- I no longer have bangs, hee)

So I will be back with mudroom pictures and nursery and showers and recipes,  I pinky swear.  In the meantime, fill me in!  Any good deals gotten on Friday from hell?  Did you run over anyone or mace them into submission?  Or were you like me- comatose from casserole?

Nov 18, 2011

Third Trimester

Good morning dear hearts!  Thought it was time for some grainy iphone pics to show you how much I am showing (the lady at Dillards might have had a point. . .)

So 29 weeks.  This third trimester thing, well. . .it's a little rough  (I have just been a bundle of joy this pregnancy, right?).  I promise the next time I do this I won't complain as much.  Or at least try not to.

Sex of baby:

Still thinking the bean is a girl.  Mama says I need to quit with the assumptions about the sex of the baby.  Here is where I point out that for me, her and Daddy only had a girl's name picked out, and did not consider the possibility of a boy. 

Size of baby: The says a squash.  This seems like a widely variable comparison.
Total Weight Gained: 23 pounds. Um, so my target goal of 25 pounds gained is not going to happen.
Maternity Clothes: In these pics I am wearing maternity leggings, and normal clothes for the rest of my outfit.  Take that, Saleslady at Dillards!

Movement: Baby does not stop!

Sleep: I still can't get enough.  I just hate that I sleep and sleep and sleep and can't get any energy.
What I miss: My social life and a spray tan!  I am pasty white!  Oh, and smoked salmon.  I really want some smoked salmon in my life.

Cravings: Pineapple- I cannot eat enough.  Oh, and Petros.  I have had a small lite Petro and big unsweet orange tea more times than I can count the last couple of weeks.  Hmmm, those Fritos might be contributing to the poundage I think.
Aversions: Still can't handle chicken. I tried to eat a chicken mini from Chick-fil-a last week.  Sister Schubert roll and chicken nugget?  Shouldn't be an issue, yet I could barely swallow the dang thing.
Symptoms: Emotional and tired, lots of fake contractions and lower back pain.  I freaked out last Friday, as I had been having cramps since Thursday night.  I felt like an idiot when the doctor on call told me they weren't contractions, my tummy just was hurting.  He then proceeded to tell me I was right to come in, as pre-term labor (which I am at major risk for) is "the biggest threat to my baby."  Listen dude, don't use phrases like "biggest threat to my baby" to a very pregnant gal who doesn't feel good. 

However, I have been sure to take their advice and sit with my feet up.

Best Moment This Week: My friend, Ella bringing me homemade chocolate chunk cookies loaded with yummy and nutritional stuff like flaxseed.  They are so delicious- especially paired with the milk from a local dairy she left on my stoop.  Thank you dear friend!

Nov 17, 2011

Random Rants

I was in Dillards last week, perusing the bracelets for a fun a cuff to wear to my shower in Atlanta. A woman who looked to be in her mid-40's to 50's (difficult to tell, she was the type that wears so much makeup that it ages her), comes up and asks if I need any help.  "No, thank you.  I'm just browsing!" I reply with a smile.  She then proceeds to ask me in a saccharine tone "When is baby getting here?"  "End of January"  I say brightly, then turn back to the bracelets, hoping that she will get the hint.

She didn't.

"Wow, you are really showing then!"  Hmpph.  I look back up and flatly state "Well, I'm seven months pregnant." I should have simply walked away then, as she then goes into this speech about how she "did not gain a single pound with her pregnancies, and didn't even wear maternity clothes!" 

Good for you lady.  I've gained 20 pounds.  That means a lot of heft will be driving me when I punch you in the eye!  I sullenly stare at her, willing her with my eyes to quit talking and leave me the hell alone.  My teenager-y body language means nothing to her as she continues. "No stretch marks either!" she smugly crows.

Aha! I haven't gotten any of those yet, I think (knocking on every piece of wood currently surrounding me).  I triumphantly proclaim this fact to my Dillards sales clerk nemesis.

She smiles sweetly and says "Well, when you do get them, know it is all for a greater good!"

Instead of cutting her (although I did check with MOH to make sure she could care for the baby if I go to jail), or asking if her babies were subhuman since she did not gain any weight for their fluid, or placenta, I simply swept up my planned purchases and went to the shoe department for check out.  Probably not super effective, since I doubt she is commissioned, and I spent a teeny amount, but moral victory achieved!  No weight gain or stretch marks.  Hmmppphh.

Now, feel free to judge me on that, as I judge these ladies-

Oh, B.  You know I love you.  I think most of your pregnancy outfits have delightful.  I hate to do this to you, but no. . .

However, it gets worse.  Now obviously I do not have the same standard for someone like Hilary Duff as I do Beyonce.  This is just egregiously wrong though.

Dear Hilary,

Yes, we know you are pregnant and not chunking up.  However, this makes you look like a mustard colored wrinkly lumpy shiny mess.  Please take it off, and put on a maternity dress or something flowy.  Thanks!

A fellow lady in your condition.

Nov 15, 2011

Georgia Gal Shower

Getting excited about some petit fours over here! So, my Atlanta shower was lovely- the girls completely outdid themselves.  I was thrilled to pieces, and so thankful to have all of these ladies in my life.

Look at those booties!  It's still so strange to me that I am the mama to be- when did I become an adult?  I'm supposed to be laying around on couches watching Supermarket Sweep, eating massive amounts of greasy food in an effort to combat a hangover with these ladies.  Discussing crushes and parties and scheming about fake ids.  Instead we are thirty, and I have a massive belly that has nothing to do with beer.  Time just flies.

Kinger's parents sent up some excellent Dawg gear for the baby- sorry Hubs, but this baby is half Bulldog (and we all know who ends up getting the baby dressed most of the time).
 Look at the tiny baby booties on the petit fours from Henri's!  Too cute to eat (well, almost).

I was so glad that Mama was able to come to the shower (and drive me to Atlanta and back!).  The only thing that marred my day was having to say goodbye to the girls.  There's just never enough time.  Thank you so much to Kara, Kelen, Anna, Margaret, Annie, Jessie, Virge, Anne and Kinger for hosting such a wonderful shower, and thanks to all of you for the gifts and support.

Gah, stupid hormones.  I better sign off before I start tearing up. 

Nov 10, 2011

Hello Old Friends!

I have been flat on my back since getting back from Atlanta.  When I mentioned to the doctor Tuesday that I was  worn out from riding three hours, attending a shower, shopping, then riding three hours home (where I promptly threw up, oops), she looked at me like I was insane. Apparently, that's more than I should be doing. . .lesson learned, I suppose.

It was totally worth it though.  I can't wait to tell you all about my Atlanta shower thrown by my Georgia girls.  It was wonderful- and I will have photographic evidence of such shortly.  Mama and I drove down and back, since my original plans of spending the weekend in Atlanta weren't really feasible.  Being told to bring my medical records with me while traveling does not ease a worried hormonal mind.

We also hit up some maternity shopping, looking for a red dress to wear to my Knoxville shower and our family's big annual chili party.  Kate has already mentioned this, but why is everything so DRAB?  I already feel like a lump- Lord knows, I don't need to look like one as well!  I ended up ordering one from ASOS, which has been such a wonderful source of inexpensive and relatively normal clothes this pregnancy.  Thank goodness the Brits don't believe in garbing pregnant ladies only in olive green and gray.

So I now have this dress in red and cobalt blue-

Hmmm, that is about it on my end.  Our mudroom renovation is now in full swing- very exciting!  I will have the finished product before the end of the year, so this baby better stay put!

Nov 4, 2011

I Hate To Housekeep

So, my beloved friend and housekeeper has moved to the sunnier climes of the Gulf Coast and I am in mourning for my dear friend and my clean house.  Especially because, frankly, right now I can't do shit. (Excuse my language, ladies.  I'm rather frustrated here)

I am a terrible housekeeper anyway, without my current restrictions.  I realize this about myself, and have taken steps to correct it.  (i.e. hiring a housekeeper).  Add in the fact that I can't lift anything, vacuum, be around cleaning chemicals or bleach. . .well, the shower is looking a little, used, and Buddy's hair is everywhere.  It's disgusting. At least the kitchen is clean.  I can keep up with counters and sink.

I hope Mama is not reading this- if so, I'm sorry for announcing my dirty house to the world!  It's probably not as bad as announcing to our cooking class last night that I don't know how to make pie crust because my mama always uses Pillsbury.  Hee.

Anyway, are y'all some of those lucky girls that love to clean?  If so, please e-mail me and I will give you directions to our little stone house- you will always be welcome at my house!

Nov 2, 2011

On Loneliness

Disclaimer- this is not meant to be a "woe is me" type of post. I want no pitying comments. 

Okay, that being said, this pregnancy thing is can be tough. I can see your eyes rolling- "here goes Captain Obvious again!" 

However, what I'm struggling with is the isolation.  I've gone from dashing around from one event to another to crawling into bed at 7:30 on a Friday night.  I never had this alleged "honeymoon" period that the pregnancy books promised me.  Breach of contract! Promissory estoppel and detrimental reliance! 

This loneliness is self-imposed.  There are plenty of people I could be visiting with, but I just can't move off the couch.  I could make Hubs stay in with me, but (a) that would be pretty unfair considering I'm conked out by nine at the latest, (b) it's football season, and (c) he will have zero social life as well in less than three months when this baby gets here.  This is the point in the story when Buddy pipes in with what a loyal and furry companion he has been to me- very true, although our conversations are getting a little one-sided.

Now the truth is, I have been out of town for weddings, to a football game, for a spa weekend, lots of girls' dinners out, and parties.  It's not like I have taken a vow of silence.  Each of these things has then worn me out for a week.  I think a lot of these blues also relate to the complications I am having with the pregnancy and ensuing restrictions.  Rather than call a friend to go on a stroll, then have to be so nit-picky about where we go (I live in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains, and am not allowed to walk hills- it gets tricky), I just set out on my own (Buddy has been too wild on the leash lately for me to handle safely).

Now, many of you would snort with derision at my "isolation" if you looked at how often I am seeing people.  I think it is just the drop from all activity all the time, to snuggling up alone with a good book.  I have enjoyed that aspect greatly- the built-in reason to stay no to things and rest and read.  I am just ready to be recharged!  (Please do not say "get used to being tired, you'll be tired for the next 18 years".  I've heard it, thanks!).

So there is my whine.  Have any other pregnant ladies felt like this?  I am so envious of you girls who have been energetic and themselves most of the way through- I think that is how I envisioned my pregnant-self, so facing reality has been tough.  If you are still reading, thanks for wading through my whining- and remember- no pity, please! If you have any advice though, I would be glad to hear it!

Oct 31, 2011

Bad Betty

So I struggled into some panty hose, used a bottle of industrial strength hairspray and clipped on my earrings. Insert drink and cigarette (not shown here, but an integral part of the costume) and I became Betty Draper.  26 weeks pregnant, strutting (well, limping by the end of the night) around with a cigarette in my hand. . .it was a huge party and I got some confused looks.  My obstetrician was there and thought it was hilarious, however. 

When I got home, I tried to get a better picture of my dress- I think I will have it altered and sport it regularly once this bun is out of its oven.  The coat had to stay on all night as during said struggle with panty hose, I bent over and heard the splitting of a already broken vintage zipper.  Stiff tailored brocade dresses from the mid-sixties plus 6.5 month pregnant belly- not the best match.  Who'd of thunk it?

So, I got safety pinned up, threw on a coat, and rolled with it.

I really wanted a drink though.
I hope y'all have a lovely Halloween, and eat massive amounts of candy!  Fill me in on costumes please. Note- I am afraid I did not push mine far enough, as when I sent the top picture to Mama- she thought I was just going out on the town, and did not realize I was in costume.  Hmmmpphh.

Oct 27, 2011

Comfort on Tap

I recently read that the consumption of dark chocolate helps counteract the negative effects of stress on a fetus.  So, I began this morning with a big plate of fluffy buttery scrambled eggs, a cup of dark hot chocolate, and a cheesy mystery novel.  Breakfast was eaten in bed, and the baby kicked with delight.

Tuesday night worries were soothed with a warm bath and the new issue of Southern Living.  It is amazing how the simplest pleasures give such relief.

However, I have saved the biggest cheer-me-up/stress relief for last.  While perusing Target's aisles with Hubs, we happened upon dog costumes.  Hubs laughed as my eyes grew wide with excitement as I flipped through the racks- envisioning Buddy chasing his backyard squirrels while wearing a squirrel costume! I mean, that would be probably one of the most delightful things to witness ever.  Unfortunately, the costume selection for golden retrievers (70 pounds=XXL) ran woefully slim.

My little pumpkin!  Putting this hat on was a two person operation.  My role was petting Buddy (and trying not to wet my pants, as I was laughing so hard), while Hubs manfully struggled a squirming dog into a pumpkin hat.

The next step was the pumpkin collar.  I had to wait until Buddy's valiant efforts to remove the hat subsided- then I attacked him with a velcro mess of tulle and fleecy material.  He protested that he is a boy, but it was to no avail.  Finally he acquiesced, but wouldn't look at me for the rest of the night.

"When the hell is that baby going to get here, so I no longer have to suffer this type of indignity?"

So, in summary, when I need a pick me up and can't guzzle down some wine- hide all dog costumes.  Buddy begs you!

Oct 26, 2011

When Okay is Wonderful

Thank you all so much for the outpouring of support! After a three (!) hour appointment at the high-risk doctor, the outcome was what I predicted.  "Baby is small, but normal.  We have to be really careful with the bicornuate uterus and two vessel cord, and we will monitor the baby's growth and the amount of blood flow every two weeks."

So. . . the status quo! Best news ever!  Baby will still likely be early, but hopefully reasonably early.  I will keep going to the doctor for an ultrasound every two weeks.  I'm sure I will have a mild panic attack in the hours leading up to each appointment, but am peaceful and relieved for now.  Basically, I have two obstacles in our way- wonky uterus and wonky umbilical cord.  The baby and I can hurdle over those.  Just a cautious hurdling, where we don't get out of breath or travel. . .

Oct 25, 2011

Giving Up Your Worry

So, I had grand plans of sharing with y'all a delicious meatloaf recipe that involves three (!) types of pig, but my mind is so full right now with another matter, that comfort food will have to wait.

Yesterday, I went in for my 25 week ultrasound.  Remember that I have been having scans every two weeks, due to the heart-shaped uterus.  This week, the doctor became a trifle concerned about the baby's growth.  The problem is not that I have a small baby (genetically, I will have a small baby- I was teeny, and am not a very big person now), but that the baby's growth has been dropping percentiles over the past couple of months.  Then the doctor noticed that my umbilical cord has two vessels instead of three.  In itself, this can be fairly common, and is not a huge cause for concern.  However, combined with the growth dropping, and my wonky uterus, well. . .I'm heading to the high risk doctors (who I had to see about cerclage possibility in the first trimester) tomorrow.

So, I am sitting there with Hubs, trying not to freak out, a strained smile on my face as I ask what this means.  I'm a lawyer- I need to know ramifications, people!  If the bean is having trouble growing inside of me, they will likely pump me full of steroids to speed its lung development, and I will give birth around 34 weeks- a Christmas baby! (note, get cracking on the nursery ASAP).

Now, the reason I hesitated to post any of this is that we don't know much right now.  We could check everything out tomorrow on the high-risk doc's super-duper ultrasound machine, and the baby could have completely different measurements.  Especially since it's a wiggler, the measurements can be imprecise.  Or, the doctor could have something completely different to say.

So, after my slight breakdown yesterday (which I am allowed, hormones and mama instincts call for tears), I feel positive!  I am so blessed that I live in a city where I can go up a floor from my doctor to see the high risk doctors.  If the baby has a hard time after it is born, they just whisk it under the street via a direct tunnel to Children's Hospital.  Also, it's a good thing that I have the previous complications leading to all these scans- otherwise we would likely not know about any of this.  So, although I did sleep a restless dream-filled slumber last night, I gave up my worry to God.  I am trying to release it to him every time I feel it creeping back into my thoughts.  It's difficult for sure.  I want to dwell, and dissect, and scare myself with various outcomes.  However, beyond knowing that it's not going to do me any good, I know it's not going to do the baby any good.  Law, I think I'm becoming a mama already.

I will be sure to let y'all know what the doctors say tomorrow.  Now, to end on a cheerful note, here's a picture of me holding one of Peg's triplets after their baptism Sunday (hopefully that baby's adorable smile will distract ya'll from my terrible hair)!

Oct 18, 2011

Milk and Cookies

Today I was awake for far too many hours, waking up early to straighten up my wreck of a house, dealing with the guys here for new gutters, a busy day at work, a meeting with the curtain lady to measure for the nursery (the reason for the early morning frantic cleaning, an opera meeting which fell by the wayside, and a Junior League committee meeting. 

All these mundane events and errands were punctuated by me driving over a curb at lunch, resulting in a packed patio of people (some of whom I know) staring at me in my convertible as it made that excruciatingly loud crunching sound as my front wheels, then the back wheels, went over said curb.  Thank the Lord and Jackie O. for big sunglasses. 

Combined with the realization that I am beginning to waddle, it was a crawl right into bed when you get home 12 hours after you left it kind of day.  Bed accompanied with my laptop to pen this post, and a tray laden with milk and cookies.

And not just any cookie.  Homemade carrot cake cookies.  I can't stop making them.  Easy and delicious, they are laden with cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice- the perfect fall nibble.  So the recipe before I fall out-

1 box yellow cake mix
1 scant cup shredded carrot (I bought baby carrots to use rest of the bag for healthy snack.  This means it takes forever and a day to shred)
1 cups chopped pecans
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1/3 cup vegetable oil

Mix together the first five ingredients in a large mixing bowl
Combine the eggs and oil in another bowl
Dump into the dry mixture and stir to combine well
Refrigerate for an hour
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees
on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper droop hefty spoonfuls of the dough about 1-2 inches apart
Bake for about 15 minutes
Cool for a couple minutes
Transfer to a wire rack for further cooling down

These were a huge hit at the UT-UGA tailgate.  I made the next batch intending to give them away, but. . .

Note- the original recipe (from Southern Lady magazine, honey-chile) called for 1/2 cup of carrot and walnuts.  I like both, so those got doubled.  The spices were woefully underrepresented, so 1/2 a teaspoon of each got moved up to a whopping tablespoon.  If you don't like cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice, you can decrease the amount of deliciousness to 1/2 teaspoon.   I will shun you though.

Hope you Tuesdays were full of joy and required no need for cookies.  However, Thursday might, or Saturday, so get thee to the grocery store immediately.

Oct 17, 2011

The Help- My Thoughts

So I finally got around to seeing The Help with Mama on Friday.  I know I am woefully behind on this viewing, but I was overwhelmed by hype and reviews for the movie, so I held off for a bit.

Anyway, it's time for a glaringly obvious statement.

I am so thankful  that the Jim Crow era has passed, and segregation is not a part of our laws.

I'm sure you are thinking, "Why in the world am I wasting my time reading this inanity? Unless one is a Ku Klux Klan member, you are obviously grateful that segregation is gone.  What an idiot."

I tend to romanticize the early sixties a good deal.  The clothes!  The music! Gloves and hats! The cars! The lack of reality television!  Yep, I really missed my era.

Now, Mad Men has done an incredible job exploring the dark underbelly of the time, especially sexism.  However, I normally brush off any Mad Men induced qualms about my missed era.  After all, they would not apply to me.  I don't live in NYC.  Hubs isn't a womanizer (he would travel eras with me as well in my imagination).  I live in a small Southern city.  Being a stay at home mom, homemaking and volunteering would be fulfilling- no need for affairs with older politicians.  Hubs doesn't have a secret life.  Idyllic!

Except not.

So much of the movie felt eerily familar to me.  Certainly times have changed, but so many social interactions have not- from the young wives squealing at an old friend's arrival to baby fever sweeping  said group of young wives.  And we all know the domineering Hildy, whom it seems is present in every group of girls.

So I could relate. And mourn the instituationalized racism that pervaded the era- whether blatant like Southern cities, or more subtle as demonstrated on Mad Men. So I bid adieu to dreams of shirtdresses and kid gloves, woody station wagons sans car seats, and children safely playing all through the neighborhood until called in for supper.

I'm still dressing as pregnant Betty Draper for Halloween though.  Complete with glass of scotch and a cigarette.  Hope people get it- otherwise it's going to be a long, judgey night!

Oct 16, 2011

You Say Goodbye, I Say Hello

Buddy and I listened to the Tennessee- LSU game on the radio, while bidding an official adieu to summer.

Goodbye wild and crazy zinnias.

Hello Mums and Pansies! 

I dug the scraggly half-dead geraniums out of the window boxes, and planted Plenti-fall Pansies instead.  Have any of y'all tried these before?  They are allegedly going to start trailing soon.  However, I suspect that an important  component of the promised growth will be steady and frequent watering of said flower boxes.  I have written myself imploring notes from the pansies to encourage watering and posted said notes in strategic locations to discourage their demise.  We'll see if it works.
It was a sweaty and satisfying first half (well, in the yard more than on the field). 

Do y'all prefer listening to the game on the radio, or watching on the TV?  I'm a radio girl myself- it's actually easier for me to concentrate on the play action that way.  This is probably my favorite way to spend a sunny fall afternoon- elbow deep in dirt, listening to a good game with my favorite furry companion.

Of course, this might be due the fact that tailgating ain't quite as much fun as it was six months ago- amazing what a cold beer or two does for your tailgating experience!

Oct 12, 2011

Bumping It Up

So after a discussion about bellies "popping" yesterday evening, I was thinking that I have probably popped.  This morning I looked in the mirror, and thought, "Hmmm, well, I don't look all that pregnant."  (rather smugly thought this, I must add)
Then I turned to the side.

Hahahahah, I guess I do in fact look quite pregnant!  Also, excuse my jerry curl hair in these pictures.  It's raining, and I am too tired to tame the curls.

So, almost 24 weeks (please compare to just 2 weeks ago, in almost the exact same outfit, egads).

Sex of baby: We are holding fast in not finding out.  I think it is a girl.
Size of baby: A spaghetti squash/ear of corn/foot long hot dog.  These all seem vastly different sizes to me. .
Total Weight Gained:  15 pounds.  Dear Lord.
Maternity Clothes: Pants and skirts. I am loving that elastic waist. All my normal flowy dresses and tops are still in use.

Movement: Baby does not stop! 
Sleep:  I still can't get enough.

What I miss: My energy!
Cravings: Honeycrisp apples and soup- same things I would normally be craving this time of year.

Aversions: Still can't handle chicken.  We had chicken pot pie for dinner Sunday, and I could not do it!
Symptoms:  My back hurts all the time, I'm even more clumsy than normal, and soooo sleepy.
Best Moment this week: Check out the fortune that Hubs received with his fortune cookie on Monday-
So January 10th- will that be the Bean's birthday?  Pretty weird, huh?

Oct 10, 2011

A Last Taste of Summer for Fall

There are the last gasp tomatoes floating through your local stores right now (well, at least in the South).  Pick up as many as you can lay your hands on, and make this soup. 

Roasted Tomato Bisque (adapted from The Best of Southern Living cookbook):

3 pounds of tomatoes, cut in half and seeded
3 tablespoons of olive oil
1 small head fennel
3 tablespoon butter
5 shallots, coarsely chopped
1 carrot, coarsely chopped
3 cups chicken broth, divided
7 fresh tarragon sprigs
7 sprigs Italian flat leaf parsley
1 cups whipping cream
pinch of salt
pinch of pepper

  • Brush the tomato halves with Olive oil, and place cut side down in an aluminum foil covered baking dish.  Baked at 400 degree oven for 45 minutes.  Cool to the touch, and remove the skins
  • coarsely chop the fennel bulb
  • melt butter in a large saucepan over medium heat
  • add the fennel, shallot and carrot, cook about 15 minutes until the veggies are tender
  • add the 2 cups of chicken broth, tarragon and parsley
  • reduce heat and simmer, uncovered for about thirty minutes
  • discard herb sprigs (if you are a tarragon lover like mean, you might want to leave some of the leaves behind)
  • Add tomato halves, and puree with an immersion blender (or in a regular blender if immersion blender is not available)
  • process until smooth
  • stir in whipping cream
  • bring to just a simmer, and stir in the remaining cup of chicken broth salt and pepper
As a grownup twist on mater soup and grilled cheese, serve this with Barefoot Contessa's baked fontina for a perfect causual fall supper with friends gathered around the kitchen table.  Don't fuss with flowers, just set the cast ion skillet of bubbling cheese down in the center of the table, and everyone can dip their hunks of French bread in, amid bites of hot creamy soup.  That's a dinner party invitation one doesn't turn down!

Cozy Fall Supper-
Spiked Apple Cider
Spiced Pecans
Roasted Tomato Bisque
Baked Fontina
French Bread
Brer Rabbit Cookies

For a change from the normal chili, this would make a fun game watching menu- serving the soup in mugs, and the cheese on the coffee table.  Enjoy!

Oct 5, 2011


1.  I really don't like Coldplay.  I think all of their songs sound the exact same.  Not a Pink Floyd fan either.

2.  In the embarrassingly bad television category, I really dig this Hart of Dixie show.  Especially shameful since one of the character wore a little straw hat with some flowers on it inside last episode, like it was 1961.  Attention non-Southerners, we do not dress like the movie The Help! And, I still like the show.  Sigh.

3.  I have long conversations with Buddy, replete with me answering myself in Buddy's "voice".  This is either  a sign of 1) Hubs is out of town for work too much, 2) I am losing my mind or, the option which I am leaning toward, 3) I have telepathic powers when it comes to this furry creature.

Happy Wednesday!