September, 2014

Life as We Know it.

DSC_0990-(ZF-2135-99237-1-001) DSC_1049-(ZF-2135-99237-1-008) DSC_1012-(ZF-2135-99237-1-020) DSC_1039-(ZF-2135-99237-1-012)It’s happened!! I’m a mommy. The Captain is a daddy. Hooray!! We are so unbelievably in love with our little nugget. Like come on!!! Look at that hair!! He is just edible. A huge thanks to Kelsey Erin Photography for taking these awesome pics!!!

I still can’t believe that he’s here!!! After battling serious denial all last Tuesday night and about 6 hours of what I was certain were “Braxton Hicks” contractions– what!?!? I didn’t know! I thought they would go away!! Well at 4:30 in the morning my water broke and it was on like donkey kong… yes, people still say that. I can’t believe how fast everything went. Even walking into the hosptial I was still in disbelief. First babies are supposed to be late, not a week early… says ERRYBODY ever. We checked into the hospital at 6:30 am and Rocco was here at 10:58 am. It was the most exhausting and unbelievable experience. My amazing doula and my very, very pregnant bestie were my rocks! The nurses and midwives were wonderful and completely respected my wishes for Rocco’s birth and were brilliant!!! I was completely in my own world, “the zone” I believe it’s called. My mom boarded a plane from Atlanta at 5:30 Cali time and walked in [so I was told] 30 minutes before the nugget arrived. Praise The Lord. The Captain was on the phone for the whole thing, just listening in to the whole crazy morning and to a lot of Ed Sheeren on repeat… we forgot my iPod. There was no time! There’s never any time!!!!!!

And like that, Rocco was born!!! I am just still in shock!! He was a tiny little nugget at 5 pounds 12 oz and 18 inches long! We are just so happy for a healthy and beautiful little boy. It’s pretty insane!! We are just blessed beyond words and we have just been overwhelmed by all the love from our friends and family!!!!

I have one more post this week that was already in the works before the arrival of little Rocco, but after that I will probably be busy loving on my little man and trying to sleep at any moment possible. So see you soon!!!!

The Niçoise was Delicious

photo 1Third trimester pregnancy has had me craving pretty much the same things over and over again. Avocado rolls and veggie tempura, but I have been trying my darnedest to keep my diet varied and healthy. After eating at a fancy restaurant and seeing their classic niçoise on the menu I haven’t able to get it out of my head… I kept seeing them everywhere and any salad with potatoes in it is pretty much ace in my book. So this is my not so specific recipe for a delish and vegan niçoise! Enjoy!!!!

photo 3Whatcha Need:

Butter Lettuce

Red potatoes, chopped and steamed until soft

String beans, trimmed and steamed [try to keep them a bit crunchy]

Niçoise or Kalamata olives, chopped [niçoise are actually not my fave]

Red onion, sliced very thin

Roasted red peppers, sliced super thin

Artichoke hearts, quartered [canned is fine, but in a perfect world I would’ve steamed my own]

White beans, strained and rinsed

Avocado sliced

Dressing:

3 cloves of garlic, minced

1 tablespoon dijon mustard

1/3 cup of Olive oil

a few splashes of warm water to loosen it up

A healthy pinch of salt

A few turns of the pepper mill

Chives, chopped [I didn’t have any, but it would’ve made the dressing
perfect]photo 2You can make enough for 1 or for 10 very easily. There aren’t any rules on how you compile this salad!!! Seriously, enjoy putting it together. I’m a fan of the deconstructed plate. I like to lightly dress each component before plating it. You don’t need much. There’s nothing I hate more than a soggy over dressed salad. Well, maybe ugly shoes… and ugly handbags… and ugly wedding dresses… I think you get the point. Anywho, I plan of eating this salad for like a week. Enjoy!!!

I’m still pregnant…

1502742_843498969017922_3361832461114390515_oPhoto via Tatum Kathleen

Yes, the post title is meant to be sung to the tune of I’m so Fancy… So I’ve seen a few bloggers do BumpDates every month which are super cute and so much fun to read. My favorite has been my hilarious friend Kristen. Her little boy Everett is just precious!!! Well, I thought that I should finish this pregnancy off with a little BumpDate round up of myself. I mean, I love talking about myself sooooo it’s surprising I haven’t been doing it all along!

I want to thank Tatum Kathleen Photography for my awesome maternity shots!! Also, a huge thanks  to Kelsey Erin Photography for keeping Blissful Happenings looking good and taking our brilliant food comparison pics!!! I love my boos!!

DSC_0917-(ZF-8413-57929-1-018)Photo via Kelsey Erin | Yes, I’ve been informed that I selected the smallest watermelon possible… I was going by weight…

[How many weeks?] 39 weeks on Thursday

[Gender?] Boy

[Name?] Rocco

[Weight Gain?] I hate you! How rude!?

[What foods have you been craving?] All. The. Food. I have had an enormous appetite pretty much since the second trimester. Who are we kidding!? I have always had an enormous appetite, but it’s been out of control. I started off craving biscuits and gravy and frozen Van’s waffles. I crave avocado rolls and veggie tempura from Lil’ Tokyo pretty much every single day. They know me pretty well there…

[How has your sleep been?] Meh. It’s been okay. I would say I get up to pee 3-6 times a night which isn’t awesome, but luckily I’m able to fall back asleep. Nature’s way of preparing me for Rocco’s many feedings!?

[How are your emotions?] Ummmm they are definitely heightened. I cry a lot, it doesn’t take much at all.  I am incredibly needy these days and I miss The Captain. I spend a lot of time hugging my dogs and watching Gossip Girl.

[Have you been nesting?] Definitely. I just want everything cleaned and disinfected… This has been a terribly inconvenient time for my house to spring a leak and have a massive hole cut into my ceiling. Sigh. I can’t wait for it to be finished so I can mop and dust.

[What’s on my nightstand?] I’ve been reading HypnoBirthing, HappyBaby, Dad is Fat, and Bringing Up Bébé. I can’t quite focus enough to read much, but I’ve been trying.

[What am I super over!?] This heat. I can’t take it. It’s been absolutely miserable. This ridiculously un-San Diegan 95-100 degree weather is killing me. Crotch sweat is an awful thing…

[Any guesses when you will go into labor?] I wish I could say tomorrow, but I have a feeling I’m going to be pretty close to my due date. I think October 4 is the day… but what do I know!?!

[What I’m looking forward to?] I absolutely cannot wait to meet this nugget!! I am so excited for labor, which I know sounds crazy, but I can’t wait to feel a contraction and know that sometime soon I’m gonna meet my son!! I can’t wait to see if he’s going to look like The Captain!! I just imagine his mini-me and that makes me happier than I can tell you!!!

10550976_830528690314950_3897631586528655835_nPhoto via Tatum Kathleen

Fried Green Goodness

photo 1Because coommmmmeeeee onnnnn!!! Look at them!!!! I mean first off, finding green tomatoes in Southern California is a small feet of victory in and of itself. No, I don’t want effin tomatillo!! Thank the Lord for Whole Foods and heirloom green tomatoes that cost WAY too much, but were totally worth it!!! Second, I looked up a recipe or two and was super disappointed by what vegans thought a fried green tomato should be comprised of, like come on, are they even from the South!?!? Doubtful! I had to figure it out on my own and as it turns out, I am a super awesome Southern girl.

photo 2Made enough for 2-3 very hungry people

2 huge green heirloom tomatoes, sliced thin

1 cup of unsweetened Almond Milk blended with 2 tablespoons of Flaxseeds

1 cup flour for dredging + 1 cup for breading mixture

1 cup fine yellow cornmeal

2 teaspoons of garlic powder

1 teaspoon of salt + a little more to help draw out moisture

A pinch of cayenne pepper

Safflower oil for shallow frying

So I started by sprinkling the tomatoes with salt and let them sit for nearly an hour. Then wipe them off with a damp paper towel. Start about an inch of oil going in a frying pan. Put the milk mixture in one bowl, flour in one, and the flour/cornmeal mixture with the spices in another. So this is a 3 dipper. First, tomatoes go into the flour. Second, into the milk “egg” mixture. And thirdly, into the breading. Once the oil is all warm and bubbly start frying!! Flip when they are golden brown and then set on a paper towel lined plate to soak up the extra oil! Enjoy with some mashed tatos, corn on the cob, some cornbread, and the only thing missing from my meal string beans!

photo 3I think that if you wanted to health this up that it would be really easy to get a tasty and delicious result without frying. I would bake at 450 on a wire tray placed on a sheet pan. I would think a solid 30-35 minutes would crisp them up just nicely!!

 

The Breast Choice

elizabeth-banks-as-wendy-in-what-to-expectimage via

Yes, I have watched a ton of What to Expect when You’re Expecting over the past 9 months… NBD. Last week I mentioned that I had chosen not to buy any nursing bras and you’d think I’d said that I planned on using banana leaves to diaper my baby and fill his bottle with a concoction of sweet tea and coffee. I figured I would give you my reasons for forgoing this overpriced, so-called necessity.

1. No one seems to like them. Even those advocating don’t truly seem to love the ones that they own. My bestest buddy has 5 little ones and didn’t have a single good thing to say about them, any brand, and she totally would know what was best. I completely trust her judgment and since talking to her I’ve found a few other Moms that also feel the same way and who successfully breastfed without nursing bras.

2. On top of the fact that they seem to be barely adequate, they range from 30-75 dollars. 75 dollars!? For an ugly bra!?!? Ummmm dude, there are post-baby clothes to buy. Pass.

3. I hate to break it to you, but a super stretchy sports bra easily raises and lowers over your boob…

4. Have I mentioned that they are, like, SUPER ugly!!!?!?!?

5. I’d rather decide I can’t live without them than buy a ton only to find that they are completely useless to me. Praise The Lord for Amazon 2 day shipping.

So there, those are the groundbreaking life-altering reasons I will not be purchasing a nursing bra.

Pita Veggie Burgers

photo 4Like whoaaaaa! This was easy and so super quick and hella tasty!!! I am a massive fan of Sunshine Burgers, my favorite is the BBQ! HOLY CRAP, yes!! Well, they were on super sale at Sprouts and my beloved bbq was sold out, so I thought I’d give the garden herb a try #Winning. I really wanted a little Mediterranean flare of sorts and I thought why not shove it in a pita with some of my favorite flavors. So I did and guess what!? It was awesome.

photo 5Whatcha Need:

A garden herb Sunshine patty, zapped in the microwave

pita opened up and lightly toasted

red onions, sliced finely

butter lettuce

cherry tomatoes

kalamata olives

cucumbers, sliced thinly

avocado

some [I used a lot more than some] of your favorite hummus to spread on the pita

a schemer of Veganaise if you wanna be really fancy

Assemble to your liking! If you want you can pre-heat the oven to 450, cut up a few sweet potatoes, mix with a touch of coconut oil, and a pinch of salt. Bake until nice and crispy. Soooooooooo good.

photo 3