Thursday, May 26, 2016

What We've Been Up To Lately...

Since this post is a jumble of photos and blurbs, I'll just jump right in with these cuties :) :) :)

Andy and Calum in their Arsenal kits is just too cute.  We got him a 6-9 month onesie and he's already in it - we have a long (tall?) baby!

He just blew past all the newborn sized clothes we had (hand me downs thankfully!) and we had to make sure to get him into the smaller stuff before he outgrows it.  This onesie was made in the Philippines and was gifted from Grandma in honor of Cal's background, 1/8 Filipino!

Calum is taking a bottle like a champ and Andy loves to feed him.  Como Tomo FTW.

At about two weeks old, Calum and I headed out without Andy for the first time!  But we had Ariel and Nathan for support.  We strolled the mall and, of course, our beautiful boys attracted plenty of attention ;)

We went to Grizzly Peak - Victor's Gold and chicken club (AND polenta fries, Cparks would approve)...

^^ Cal is ironically wearing his First Draft Pick from his Aunt Kristen.  Like I would ever let him play football bahaha...

The first time chilling out on our deck.  It has been too cold, too windy, too hot, we had a wasp nest....finally it got just right out there for him (yes, we are helicopter parents :P )

Seriously, these Cal + Daddy moments are my life.  Calum loves story time so we lay on the floor and read books to him.  His first favorite was Green Eggs and Ham but he recently has started loving Big Little ;)  Where is Baby's Belly Button? is a huge hit too!  I'm personally loving Giraffes Can't Dance and the Little Blue Trucks but he's hot and cold on these hehe

Andy and I like to take him for walks around our neighborhood in the Tula.  I just ordered a Tulasaurus one so Andy and I can have our own.

Tummy time and more outfits...

^^ The one on the right cracks me up.  He tucked his little legs and has a huge cloth diaper on and his grin, oh man, what a goof!  (PS Rosie Pope onesies, pictured on the left here, are the BEST, thanks Ali!)

{Calum at LAB}
{Calum at Jolly Pumpkin}
A late lunch at Cafe Zola with my MIL, GMIL, Ariel, Nathan and Calum! 

{Calum at Kilwins}

{Calum at Argus Farm Stop}
Calum and I ventured out alone to Kerrytown one Wednesday.  We picked up some vegetables from the Farmer's Market since there was a man spraying rat poison/hand sanitizer on food at the local grocery stores, wtf.

Cal held the eggs ;)

^^ His first trip to Zingerman's for bread!

We made it downtown for Mother's Day.  We had an early "dinner" at Isalita:  Chicken Gorditas and Cuban Quesadilla.  While tasty, I was regretting eating either of them really quickly...

Since we've been living off of this salad - Organic Girl Kale or Baby Spinach, tomato, cheddar cheese, avocado, red onion and if we're feeling fancy, sliced cucumber.  So the richness of Isalita was a little jarring!!!

^^ Maybe we can manage to get some chicken on it and almost always we include a slice of Zingerman's Farm Bread.  We spend way more money at Zingerman's these days than I care to admit.  But it is delicious and easy.

Jules is suffering from mild bouts of depression but we still love him so much!  I had just put Cal down for a nap and came to hug Andy when we hear a "mew" and look down to see Jules' big eyes looking at us longingly.  I scooped him up and cuddled him into our hug.  He was purr-ty happy!

Cal is meeting more and more family and friends -

{Papa Joe}
{Mee Mee}
Grandma and Grandpa ...


{Gigi - Great Grandma}

{Great Grandpa Herb}

{Drew & Alyssa}

'Aunt' Anna and 'Uncle' Chris and Christoper... 

From day 1 we swaddled Cal to help him sleep.  As he has gotten bigger and stronger, we realized that a swaddle blanket + our swaddling skills would not contain this hulk baby.  It is pretty comical at how bad I am at swaddling.


^^ Ziggy Baby swaddle worked for a little while but the velcro started sticking to me and scratching me.  When he started to break out of the velcro swaddle we moved on to the Easy Swaddle by Aden & Anais.

Someone wore pants for the first time!  I LOVE this picture, he's so cute!

We had our first family selfie.  Calum was not that interested lol.

Sporting the locavore onesie from Aunt Anna and Aunt Elisabeth!  (Pictured on the blanket from Marj, best blankie ever!)

We made the transition to cloth diapers!  We have a bunch of GroVia covers but the Flip covers are our favorite, especially for summer since they are thinner.  We're using DyDee Diaper service for the inserts.  We originally were going to wash our own inserts but that went out the window real fast.  Laundry is on repeat.

^^ Calum got his 2 months vaccinations and got some cool stickers in return.  I wore a white shirt to this visit and of course he bled all over me, poor guy!

And one more of our fur babe.  The big brother.  He's matured so much in the couple months!  He hisses at strangers (to him) but loves his Calum <3

Monday, May 2, 2016

A Vegetable-Packed "Pasta" Sauce served over Quinoa

When I thought about getting pregnant, I imagined close to my due date I would make a few weeks of healthy meals to freeze so we would be well-fed while loving on our newborn...but over the past few months I realized that this plan is not going to work for me.  I love to cook way too much and I also get anxious about having food in the freezer that needs to be eaten before it goes bad lest we waste it.  I can't stand to waste things!  Just last month I made a chili that we had too much of and I froze a serving of it.  I think every other day after freezing it, I asked my husband if we were going to eat the chili for dinner yet.  It actually got in the way of our meals for the week, when it was supposed to make things 'easier'.

So instead of a bunch of healthy meals to freeze, I made this one Vegetable-Packed "Pasta" Sauce and quite a few batches of cookie dough for our freezer.  (There is nothing like baking a sheet of fresh cookies when you want one.  This helps us not eat too many cookies too, since a jar full of cookies is much more enticing than just 12 between the two of us!).

Normally I would serve the "Pasta" sauce over actual pasta but quinoa is much healthier and makes for easier eating at lunch time than a bowl of pasta.

You can choose whichever vegetables you like for this recipe but I recommend at least an onion, lots of garlic (I used 8 cloves!), carrots and at least one bell pepper.

I've unfortunately gotten picky about my canned tomatoes and will shop around for the San Marzano tomatoes - they are just so fresh and tasty!  I used two cans of crushed tomatoes this time, but could see mixing it up with diced too.

I diced up a whole zucchini and package of cremini mushrooms for our veggie-packed sauce.

The final 'special' addition to this pasta sauce is kalamata olives.  I chop up about a 1/2 pint of pitted kalamata olives, and it gives the sauce that extra special briny flavor that only olives can offer.  I don't like canned olives so I wouldn't recommend substituting those unless you actually like them because the flavor definitely sticks around, it isn't hidden in the rest of the sauce.

Although we're often French wine drinkers, it obviously wouldn't do for an Italian sauce so Andy picked out this Sangiovese from our favorite local wine shop.  $10 and its a good glass but not too expensive to cook with!

A few fresh basil leaves now...

...and a few fresh basil leave later :)

This recipe made 12 cups of sauce so we froze 7 cups (our one healthy meal stock for when baby gets here) and split the rest for one dinner, over fettuccine, and one lunch, over quinoa.

Vegetable-Packed "Pasta" Sauce


1 large yellow onion
8 medium to large carrots, peeled and diced
8 fat cloves of garlic, diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1/2 c olive oil
1-2 c of mushrooms, sliced
1 large zucchini, diced
1/2 pint of pitted kalamata olives, chopped
2 28 oz cans of San Marzano crushed tomatoes
2/3 c red Italian wine
fresh basil leaves
salt to taste


In a large stock pot, heat your olive oil to medium and add your onion, bell peppers, carrots and garlic to the pot.  Saute until the carrots start to get soft (not mushy) and the onions begin to get translucent, about 8 to 10 minutes.  Add your mushrooms, zucchini and olives and saute for another 3 minutes or so.  Add your tomatoes, red wine, a few chopped basil leaves and a light sprinkle of salt.  Simmer for about 30 minutes.  Remove from heat.

Serve your sauce hot, topped with a sprinkle of parmesan cheese, if you want, and some fresh basil.  You'll enjoy this over your favorite pasta, in a bowl with hunk of crusty bread or over top of quinoa - this sauce is so good on its own, you'll easily find ways to make sure to eat it all without eating a ton of pasta ;)

PS look at all these glorious cookie dough balls ...