Friends & Family

The Countdown

Baby Number Two

My baby is due in twenty-nine days. That means:

I am the size of a manatee and keep getting bigger.

My son is doing all he can to take advantage of me as I waddle around with a child’s feet wedged into my lungs, too tired to take away the granola bar he just stole off the counter or find an alternate activity when he wants to watch yet another episode of Daniel Tiger.

My dog runs through my house with muddy feet every time she comes inside because I can’t catch her to wipe them down.

My husband is getting yelled at almost every day.

All I want to do is eat but everything I eat gives me heartburn. Even water.

Every day I wish the baby would just come already, and then I feel guilty for wishing that because she needs every moment she can get in utero until her due date.

I’m getting ahead on Christmas shopping because I’ll have a newborn for a huge chunk of the holiday season.

I have no problem with businesses decorating early this year, because I figure I’ll probably miss most of the festivities.

Then I feel sorry for myself because being so pregnant means I won’t get to travel for Thanksgiving and no one is coming here, plus I’ll be bleeding and achy and leaking milk through Christmastime, and my son hates Halloween so I missed that, too.

Then I watch Christmas specials though it’s November and my son protests the whole time unless there’s a dog or a truck on the screen.

And, of course, I feel guilty because those partially watched Christmas specials still count as screen time and I’m turning my kid into a TV addict.

In fact, he’s watching me type this and that counts as screen time, too.

So he’s going to grow up to be not a doctor or lawyer or teddy bear salesman, but a zombie.

So I do my best to get him out of the house and active and having fun in the real world, even if it’s raining, even if I feel like a giant slug.

So I cried this morning because I couldn’t get my son’s boots on but he remained calm and we got it done.

So, I am now officially less reasonable than a two-year-old.

Cooking & Eating, Friends & Family

It’s Hot Out, but I’m Freezing

Whisking

Do you ever wonder who uses their oven in the summer?

Also, what has two thumbs and a batch of cookies in the oven?

This girl. (You’ll have to imagine me in my Minnie Mouse apron, pointing to myself with my thumbs.)

Okay, to be fair, we have heat pumps, which is kind of like air conditioning. Plus it’s actually kind of mild today–only 74. But that really isn’t the point.

You see, I’m going to have a baby in four-and-a-half months. If you’ve never had a baby before, let me tell you: the last thing I’m going to want to do after pushing a seven-to-ten pound human out of me is cook. And if I do want to cook, about two minutes on the hard kitchen tile will remind me that I’m not yet in the condition to stand on tile floors. I’ll have my husband and mother for a little while, but not for long, and if I manage to work out the whole breastfeeding/pumping thing, I will be hungry. As I recall, pregnancy hunger is nothing compared with nursing hunger. So I should probably have some healthy options on hand. Maybe a few tasty treats, too.

So now I’m experimenting with freezability, which means baking and roasting in the middle of summer. Today, for example, I tried a cookie recipe from The Joy of Cooking. Basic butter wafers. They strike me as too delicate for the freezer. So much so that I’m not going to try. But that’s why we test things. How upsetting if I’d frozen the batter and then gotten awful cookies out of it later.

I already have a few recipes I know work. Lasagna and shepherd’s pie freeze beautifully, as do pound cakes and chocolate chip cookie dough. I’ve got some pot pies in the freezer that I’ll thaw soon to see if the dough kept. Chili and marinara do okay for short bursts (I’ll be freezing those this fall), so I thought I’d try freezing ratatouille, too.

I realize that there are whole cookbooks dedicated to freezer recipes, but as we see from my butter cookies, not every recipe is perfect for every occasion. So I thought I’d ask: do you have any favorite freezer recipes? I’ve been thinking of doing chicken strips and burritos. What else?