Monday, October 27, 2008

10/27 Vegan Menu Plan Monday

My 2nd week of menu planning! Last week went pretty good dinner wise. I used my plan maybe half of the week? Is that normal? lol But it was nice to have something to fall back on. I switched a few nights around, and on one night, Tony ended up cooking so that was nice. Another night, I ended up throwing together a quick shepherd's pie that was really good. All I did was use a can of Amy's Lentil soup, added in some frozen green beans, peas, corn, and carrots. Let that cook for a few minutes while I made some instant mashed potatoes. (Yeah, it probably would have been better with fresh mashed potatoes, but I was exhausted... lol) After the soup mixture simmered down for a bit, I poured it into a casserole dish, topped that with the mashed potatoes, then sprinkled crushed french fried onions on top. Then baked it in the oven for about 15 minutes. Even Tony said it was good. I thought so, especially since it was literally just thrown together. =)

Here's my plan for this week:
*Okay, had to edit because 1) wasn't feeling up to cooking tonight and 2) I completely forgot Friday is my birthday LOL!

Monday (if I feel better by this evening):
Broccoli Soup (my personal creation, I'll come back and add in the recipe)
Otherwise, whatever Tony wants to cook. =)
*Didn't feel better, so Tony made spaghetti with a ton of various veggies added in. Super yummy. Moved soup to Wednesday.

"Meaty" Slow Cooker Chili from Geek, Poet, Housewife Wannabe

Wednesday (duty day):
Broccoli soup (my recipe... I'll add later.)

Fettucini with Artichokes and Beans (my current favorite dinner) with lemon juice squeezed on top, and green beans on the side

Hopefully going to the Agriturismo! or at least a restaurant =)

Morningstar Chi'kin strips, broccoli rice (made with leftover soup,) and another vegetable.

Bean Tacos, spanish rice, and fried corn

I'm participating in:
Menu Plan Monday hosted by Organizing Junkie
Veggie Menu Monday hosted by Geek, Poet, Housewife Wannabe
Veg*n Meal Plan Monday hosted by In a Garden Somewhere

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Pregnancy Pics!!!!

Even when I was pregnant with Carlee, I wanted pregnancy pictures, but wasn't able to get them done. This pregnancy, I am so blessed to have a really good friend, Angie, who is a really really awesome photographer! This past Saturday we did a shoot together and I loved soooo many of the shots. We even had to deal with low lighting due to thunderstorm clouds that came in, and with Carlee's weird smiles and constant moving and they still came out great! These are my super super favorites. :)

Is she awesome or what?!
Thank you so much Angie!!!!!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Vegan Meal Planning Monday!

I've decided to try my hand at meal planning. I have a friend who does once or twice a month cooking, and I would love to eventually get there, but I think I need to start small. lol. She raves about OAMC, how she's never in the kitchen and that it's so nice to have dinners ready to go. That would be soooooo nice.... But for me, organization needs to come one step at a time LOL otherwise, I will get overwhelmed.

This week, I'll probably be trying a bunch of new, quick, and easy recipes in order to get a small collection to share with some good friends of mine that have volunteered to cook us meals when the baby gets here. Do I have awesome friends or what?! :D

Here's the sites that got me interested:

Organizing Junkie who hosts Menu Plan Monday

In a Garden Somewhere who hosts Veg*n Meal Plan Monday

Tortilla Casserole
*Review: This was pretty good. For the two cups of vegetables that the recipe calls for, I used: 1 can of rinsed & drained black beans, 1 cup of frozen corn, and 1 cup of chopped red/yellow/green bell peppers. Obviously I went over the 2 cups, but it wasn't too many vegetables, I thought it was just right. I used only 1 onion, since my hubby isn't too fond of them. One was enough for us. On the other hand, one clove of garlic wasn't near enough. I actually used 4 small cloves since all of mine were small, and next time I will use even more. Instead of the jalapeno, I added 1/2 of a 4 oz can of green chilies. I can't make things even remotely spicy if I want Carlee to eat it. I skipped the nondairy cheeses since I can't get them here. So, with all those changes, it was good. I didn't put near enough salt in while cooking (I never guess salt amounts right!) And I think that since I didn't go for spicy hot, that I need to add some different spices to it, just oregano was not enough. Overall though, it was a quick and pretty good dinner. Not great, but good. The best thing about this recipe was that Carlee ate all of hers, not complaining once! We didn't even have to count bites or promise dessert! So, this recipe will definitely be a keeper for that reason alone.

"Hamburger" Macaroni Casserole
*Review: I really liked this dinner! So easy, and tasty. Then again I love those French Fried Onions. I am so glad they took the hydrogenated oils out of them too. (Well, the brand I get anyway.) (Unfortunately, the only tomato soup they had at the store had HFCS in it. boo.) This dinner was so quick to throw together, and I really liked the mix of flavors. Tony on the other hand didn't care for this dinner too much. This is usually how it goes for us with dinners. If I love it, he doesn't. If he loves it, I don't. lol. He said, "it's allright, but all I taste is the onions." I could taste all the other spices too, and I really liked the sweetness of the corn added in. Carlee liked it, so again.... it's a keeper. =)

Southwestern Pasta

(Tony has duty so we'll eat Carlee's favorite meal)
Morningstar Chikin Strips cooked in coconut oil, garlic and olive oil cous cous, and peas (super easy!)

Pizza night - Fresh basil pesto and tomato pizza. (Tony's absolute favorite) Someone posted the pesto recipe that I use from the Vegan Planet cookbook here. Add chopped tomatoes on top (we use cherry tomatoes) and you have yourself a super yummy pizza. This time, I'll be adding white beans on top for some added protein to see how we like it. *You can refrigerate any pesto you don't use for up to a few weeks.... trust me, it probably won't last that long though because it's so good*

Pistachio Pasta or Gnocchi *I will post this recipe soon*

Mediterranean Cannellini Bean Soup

I'll try to post reviews of all the new recipes as we try them.

Here are some other vegetarian meal planners for this week:

Friday, October 17, 2008

My accident prone husband.....

Today, I had planned on taking Carlee to a fire demonstration in the other housing complex. They were going to have an empty unit filled with "user friendly smoke," and have the fire fighters and Sparky there to talk to the kids. Then about 15 minutes before I was supposed to leave, I got a call from Tony. "I'm coming home," he said. "I need you to take me to the hospital."

"What!? What happened?!"

"I sliced my ear."

"How did you do that?"

"Playing basketball."

Yeah........ playing basketball. Turns out someone pushed him into a transmitter that was waiting to be demolished. (They have a makeshift basketball court....) Anyway.... long story short, we had to head to the hospital. 10 stitches later.... he's fine. From what I hear, it was really gross, but I told Tony I didn't want to look. =D

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

What I want....

This afternoon, I had a meeting with my prospective doula. I had a different lady that I was going to start up with as soon as she helped the last lady to have a baby, but she let me know that she would not be able to be my doula after all. Completely understandable, as she has a lot going on, and she wasn't charging. So, she referred me to a different lady here who is a certified doula, but who charges. I knew I still wanted someone with me, so I met with her. She gave me a third off her normal fee since I'll only have 4ish weeks left by the time we will start our doula/patient relationship. I'm very excited though, since she seemed very concerned with what I wanted and helping me achieve it.

My labor with Carlee was not traumatic by any means, in fact I was extremely blessed that everything went so well. But looking back, I regret a lot of things, I'm disappointed in how things went, and there are so many things I would change. I was not informed, I was scared, and only had Tony to help me (who was gone most of the pregnancy, and who also didn't know a thing about labor and delivery.) I gave into the doctor's advice on drugs and an epidural, even though I had originally told him I didn't want one. I felt completely not in control, like I wasn't even having a baby, and passive. My epidural was so strong that I didn't feel a thing after they administered it. I was lucky that even then, I had a strong mind/body connection and could still control my body without feeling anything, otherwise I don't doubt for a second that they would have suggested a C-section if I couldn't push effectively.

I blame the epidural and drugs for how I felt after having Carlee. I was so out of it, and felt like I had been hit by a truck. It was like my body was wondering what the hell had hit me, since during the whole event I hadn't felt a thing. I also blame the epidural for Carlee's sucking problems. It took her 2 weeks to learn how to suck right in order to eat well. Even with bottles, not just with breastfeeding, so I know it wasn't me or that she needed to "learn" to breastfeed. I never knew epidurals could cause that until recently.

This time will be different though. I have a birth plan in my head and am currently planning it out on paper. I'm hoping to go natural, do my early laboring at home, not be restrained to the bed once I'm at the hospital, and have my doula present. I want to be relaxed and will have the environment a certain way, I want to shower if I feel like it, walk if I feel like it, work through the contractions in whatever position I feel most comfortable in, hopefully snack if I need to, etc. I'm really looking foward to this birth. I can't wait to welcome our little Leah into this world, on her and my terms and in our own way.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Everything's fine!

Thank goodness! I didn't start doubting my intuition until last night, and then I didn't sleep very well, but the ultrasound results today say she's perfectly fine! Her measurements are right where they should be. My amniotic fluid is fine. Everything's good. The guy tried to get a few pictures.... buuuut she's already head down! and was facing my back. =) She's getting ready!!!!


Wednesday, October 1, 2008

33 week check up

My 32 week checkup was a week late as my doctor was on leave. We went in today, and everything was fine except my belly is measuring 4 inches smaller than it should. I'm not particularly worried, I can feel this child doing her little gymnastics in there; I know she's fine. But the doctor wants to be sure, so he scheduled me for another ultrasound.


Can you tell how excited I am? lol I have to drive down to base again this week, (ugh) on a full bladder (UGH) and get looked at for an hour (DOUBLE UGH!!!) buuuut maybe I can con the guy into printing some more pictures. *crosses fingers* heh. Gotta have those pictures for the scrapbook! =D

I'll give an update on Friday. Hope everyone is having a good week!