I promise I will not change my blog from being about anything and everything, and entirely random, but for now my mind is on babies.
I am in love. Everyone tells you how much you will be in love and addicted to your own child. They tell you, and you hear it, but it does not really sink in until you hold that precious little baby. There is no way to bottle up that knowledge — it is something that has to be experienced. I can imagine what a lot of things would be like, but many have to be experienced and felt as they happen. I have also been told that not everyone falls in love and becomes attached to their child right away.
I will say that first hour of bonding after delivery was a bit of a blur. I could see him right in front of me but the way he was laying I could not see his face. And, I was exhausted. So utterly exhausted. So it is a blur. Sure I have pictures and a video, and I am grateful he was on me first before getting checked out and cleaned up. It is the hours and days that follow that make me a feisty momma bear. I would d0 absolutely anything for this boy.
If I were to start a business, it would be to bottle up that Nico baby smell. It feels like I go and burrow my head in his neck just to smell him. I want that smell never to go away. How is it that babies smell so good? I know that eventually he will smell like sweat, and dirt, but right now I do not want that baby smell ever to go away.
Now I have two boys that melt my heart. Chris. Nico.
I am back. Or I think I am back. I do not know for how long. See I like things to be consistent. If I say I am going to be somewhere, I will be there. I do not want you to get your hopes up, in that every-day-there-will-be-a-blog kind of way. For now I think I can deliver. Although, I am not making any promises. But for now, I am back.
And…I feel like myself again. Motherhood is so many things. Some can be expressed so clearly and described, and others have to be experienced firsthand. I am a planner and a list maker. Motherhood has already taught me that I can have all the plans I want, and eventually they may happen, but for now this moment is all that matters. Birthing a baby has turned my world upside down.
The world continues to spin, work happens, life happens, but these moments with a newborn are as though time has stopped. They are so precious, so right-in-the-moment. Often I do not get a real meal in there, instead Chris finds me with a bag of open pretzels (and yes I ate half the bag). Easy wins, right? Nico is now 3.5 months old. I have folks ask me if I am going to continue with my blog and I think yes, no, er. I don’t know.
I will find that an hour has passed and I have sat in the same spot staring down at the baby sleeping on me. The wrap that I am wearing that holds him so close to me is drenched from the heat from both of our bodies. As I write this I am also slightly cold and wet from the amount of spit up that came out as I put him in the wrap. He fell right to sleep, so we both will deal with it.
I am back, but if you do not hear from me, you will know I had one of those days.
Last night before crawling into bed after a long day and week I took a few moments to catch up on Facebook. Since my week has been a blur, I forgot that today is September 11th, and maybe it is the emotions and hormones of being pregnant, but I got emotional thinking about 14 years ago today and where I was that morning. There are a few times in your life when you can remember where you were, who you were with, and sometimes vivid details of that day.
I have a bit of an intuitive streak that over time no longer freaks Chris out. Fourteen years ago today, Chris and I worked together, our desks were literally a few feet apart. I remember coming into work that morning in quite a funk. Chris asked me what was wrong and I said: “I do not know why, and I cannot figure it out but something big is going to happen today.” New to my intuitive outbursts, he at the time thought nothing of it. Not 30 minutes later, he saw what happened with the World Trade Center and quickly broke into a large meeting in our big conference room on the floor. The only place that had a television where we could see what was happening live. The rest of the floor proceeded to join us as word got out about the events of the morning. We were literally watching live as the second plane hit.
Now, at the time we lived in Boston and were in a building with 25 floors. We were on the 18th floor with views that looked toward Boston’s Logan Airport, where the planes took off. The building across from us was one of the tallest buildings in Boston at the time. The hijackers originated in Boston and they had stayed in a hotel just down the street from our building. While nothing near the fear and destruction happening in New York, there was quite a scary feeling of is Boston next? What is next?
There may be many of you that are too young to remember what happened that day, and others that have lived through other more traumatic experiences, but for someone my age this was the first time something had happened where I was not too young to understand. It definitely had an impact and, as we all know, still has an impact on the safety we feel in our country. Some Americans may have felt nothing could ever happen to us. We had put our guard down. In other ways it brought Americans together. Regardless, it was a horrible day, and I hope today you take a moment to appreciate the people you love in your life. Each and every day is precious.
You know when you have the most amazing meal? It is memorable. They way it tastes, smells, and just hits the spot. Mmm. Sometimes a meal is so so, and other times they just suck. I am not going to tell you the below recipe is amazing. It was very good. These days though how long something takes to make outweighs how amazing something is, as our time is more and more precious. For it taking over 45 minutes, I think you can get more bang for your buck with something a bit different. Having shared all that, I will tell you — the best part is the Garlic Brown Butter Breadcrumbs. The topping made this recipe.
So if you have the time, try this recipe. What I would like to do is take some of the good parts and find a simple and quick way to make something similar. Do you have any ideas?
Fontina and Spinach Baked Eggs with Garlic Brown Butter Breadcrumbs [Adapted from How Sweet Eats]
3 oz fresh spinach
4 oz fontina cheese, freshly grated
4 large eggs
2 T heavy cream or half and half
1/4 tsp pepper
1/8 tsp sea salt
1 T unsalted butter
1/2 minced garlic clove
1/4 cup panko bread crumbs
chopped fresh herbs for topping
2 large pieces of cracked wheat sourdough (toasted)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Spray a 9×9 baking dish with nonstick spray.
Place fresh spinach evenly in the bottom of the baking dish. Sprinkle about 1/2 of the grated cheese over the spinach. Place the 4 eggs over top spaced evenly. Sprinkle the salt and pepper, then add the heavy cream — drizzled over the top. Sprinkle the remaining cheese. Bake in the oven for 18-20 minutes. Cook longer if you want the yolks cooked through.
While the dish is baking, add butter to a small saucepan over medium heat and whisk constantly. Once it starts to brown, remove from heat and keep whisking for 30 seconds. Add the garlic and whisk some more. Add in the panko and fresh herbs and stir until panko is coated.
When the baked eggs are done, remove from the oven and cover with panko mixture. Serve immediately over buttered toast.
Parents. Love them, hate them. You start life being inseparable with your mom (your dad too), but you are the clingy kid, as we grew up, we all went through phases when we loathed them, they got on our nerves, or we thought they were just not cool. Then you grow up, life happens you win some and lose some, and your parents mean something much different to you. I know I am not speaking for everyone, some have closer relationships, and some have nonexistent ones, still the circle of life continues to ebb and flow.
I can remember one time in high school, or it might have been college, arriving at the Indianapolis airport (back when someone could meet you at the gate), and my dad was there to pick me up. He was wearing these horrible sweatpants and white high top sneakers. These were not name brand (at the time I cared). Additionally as horrible was his sweatshirt and one of his trucker caps. Of course I was glad to see him, and grateful to be picked up from the airport, but I was embarrassed. This was the era of “wear my brand name on the butt” aka Guess jeans, ESPIRIT. It mattered to me at the time. I was horrified that I would see someone I knew and that they would judge me.
Now I just think wow, this lonely man, my dad, was probably so happy to see me and be with his daughter on my school break and I put up walls because I did not like his sweatpants (well to my favor, men + sweatpants + public = not a good idea). In any case, we cannot go back and redo life. I have that memory and it brings tears to my eyes for all the moments I missed out with my father.
I thought I would share two precious father/daughter moments to inspire you. Whether you are the father, or the daughter (or the mother for that matter), I hope it inspires you to cherish every moment with each other. Moments are precious. Make sure you burn the good ones in your mind, not ones with purple sweatpants (oh did I forget to tell you they were purple)? The first video is a dad who returns from Afghanistan and surprises his little daughter:
One more link, (also precious). It is to a photo slide show of a father/daughter in their home before they move. The mother died at 31 due to lung cancer and the photos recreate similar angles to the couple’s wedding photos in the same house. Definitely worth checking out, but get a kleenex first. Father/daughters are something special. Wish I could hug my dad today.