Last week, as I was feeding Haddie, I looked up at my muted television and saw a delicious meal being prepared on The Chew.  I immediately scrambled for the remote and turned on the volume.  The Chew was hosting a Grandma's Throwdown, Iron Chef, Chopped, food-competition-play-on-words-situation.

The winning meal, the one that made my mouth water and had me yearning to un-mute so I could hear the sizzle on the screen...Chicken and Dumplings.

What? Chicken and Dumplings? It didn't look like slimy chicken in thick boogery soup.  It was glistening heaven and I could smell it...err, maybe that was the formula?  Anyhow, once i found out the recipe was posted on The Chew's website, I decided I'd try it out.

So, after eyeing the ingredients since my grocery haul on Sunday, I finally made Daisy's Chicken and Dumplings for dinner tonight.

There I sat with Haddie to my left, Jeff to my right and a bowl of steamy Chicken and Dumplings in front of me.  The first bite was so hot, I couldn't taste anything.  Jeff took my lead and waited a bit before digging in.  Second bite...ew, not good. Third bite...worse.  Fourth, fifth, sixth bite...looking at Jeff, who is clearly disgusted that I didn't stop after two bites like he did.  "What, you don't like it," I said.  To which he responded with laughter and said, "It's not even edible."  I completely agreed and told him I continued to eat it, thinking it would either get better or I could trick him into liking it.

After the belly laughs subsided, we came up with a Plan B and Jeff cleared the table.   Two minutes later he hollered at me to help him open the front door.  I look over my shoulder and he is carrying the entire pot of C&D.  "Where ya going," I asked.  "To DUMP this stuff outside for wild animals. At least it won't go to waste."

And that, my friends, is the tale of the DUMPlings.  

The End.
 
 
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bunch of pretties playing in the photo booth last weekend. #merryandbright
Today marks the beginning of the crazy!  The holidays are always nuts, but this year it seems there is more going on than ever before.  Is it because I am now responsible for a tiny human  24/7?  Maybe.  Is it because my entire family AND Jeff's family will be in town for 10+ days? Maybe.  Do I LOVE it all? YES!

Our darling nephews arrived Monday, Dad comes in today, followed by brother, cousins, Mom, friends, and so many more in the days to come.  It is the most wonderful, craziest time of the year and there's not better way to spend it than with your own personal crazy clan.

Who's pumped?!?

xo,
Em

P.S. Cousin Rachie and I spend lots of time replacing words with Haddie's name...Haddie Hannukah, Happy Haddiekah, Haddie Holidays.  We'll keep 'em coming. Don't worry.
 
 
I read way too many parenting books during the nine months of my pregnancy.  At any given time there were four books at my bedside and another at my husband's.  We read a lot, maybe too much, and now I'm learning it was a waste of time.

Following are things we've learned on our own over the last few months.   These tips may not work for you, BUT I'll continue sharing them as they evolve.

1. Waterworks
---Shushing, swaddling, swinging, blah, blah, blah.  All those S's are supposed give you the happiest baby on the block and to be quite frank, H is one of the happiest babies I've ever known, but I'm biased.  However, she has her moments, and I'm willing to admit my child cries really hard and sometimes she cannot be consoled.  It's rare, but it happens.  Her daddy figured out that running water is an immediate "cry-stopper."  We're talking knock-down, drag-out screaming and then POOF, silence.  Go Dad!

2.  They say breast is best and screw the rest!
---ALL the books say breast is best, but if you're anti-breastfeeding or your baby won't latch, then your only choice is to formula feed.  This is not entirely true and definitely wasn't the case for us.  H was never able to latch, but I was determined to breast feed.  The hospital insisted on supplementing her with formula and said a breast pump wouldn't help me produce enough to sustain her.  WRONG.  I pumped for the first 12 weeks of her life (until my supply said "bye-bye") and supplemented with minimal formula.  If you can't breastfeed, you are NOT doomed to formula...trust me!  Forget the books!  A breast pump is a worthwhile investment and helped me provide important nutrients to H for the first three months of her life!  It wasn't fun, it wasn't easy, but it was worth it and I'm so thankful I stuck to my instincts and didn't give up. (if you need advice on exclusively pumping, email me)

3. Bassinet
---Several books I read suggested having a bassinet in the bedroom for ease of feedings (breast or bottle) and to help make the transition from hospital to home.  If I could only have back the first four weeks H was home!  The sleepless nights due to her every tiny little sound are nights I will never regain.  The night we moved her into her own room was the first night we slept soundly in a month!  If you want to sleep when the baby sleeps and you don't live in a super mansion, don't get a bassinet.  It's a waste of money and a "parental sleep depriver."

I'll post more later, but I've got to go grab Haddie, who just woke up from a nap...on a blanket on the floor.  She's happy and sleeping 10+ hours, uninterrupted at night.  She can nap wherever she wants! 

xo,
Em







 
 
Haddie started laughing out loud today.  It's kind of amazing.  Oh, and she LOVES the lights on the Chrismukkah tree.  Too bad it's 75 degrees outside. 

Happy Weekend!
E
 
 
Let's face it, there isn't anything interesting on television during the day.  Unless, of course, you're interested in What Not to Wear, Bringing Home Baby, A Baby Story, and myriad other super obnoxious 60-minute haunts.  The news is repetitive and ultra depressing and, although I generally love food related shows, I can only watch so many b-list chefs in one day (the pros are reserved for Primetime).  Regardless of the lack of options, I don't have a lot of time to watch TV.  Haddie knows how to keep me busy.

Some days I do watch Good Morning America, Kelly and Michael and Ellen Degeneres.  Following are a few oddities that came across the tube this week.  I hope I get a tail for my Birthday this year.

Cat Tail by Neurowear...brain powered

Candy Corn flavored Oreos

Pound. Drum stick workout

 

Smiles

10/04/2012

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Someone has started smiling. Eat your heart out!

xo,
E
 
 
Good morning from our back patio.  It's a beautiful day and HJ and I are soaking in some Vitamin D with a cup of coffee, Electric Guest, the kitty and the puppy girl.  

I am so excited about tonight!  I'm going out for my first Girls Night (GNO) since HJ was born, and perhaps since I was pregnant. Translation = it's been an eternity!  My happy hour date is a friend I've had for 20 years.  I feel ANCIENT typing that. How do I have friends I've known for 20 years?

Lauren and I met on the first day of first grade and we immediately decided we'd spend that very afternoon playing at my house.  It was the FIRST day of school and we anxiously waited for our moms in the carpool line so we could beg them to let us have a play date.  Our moms had never met, and to be quite honest, we had only known each other for seven hours.  Somehow, we talked them into it and from that point forward we were a six-year-old force to be reckoned with.  It wasn't until we were much older that Lauren remembered I spent most of Kindergarten chasing people on the playground screaming that I had Rabies.  Oh, yes, this is true.  But she was still my friend :)

Since our first plate date, twenty years ago, we've celebrated our weddings and new babies together and many other milestones and memories.  We can only hope our girls, who are only two months apart, will not be nearly as clever or mischievous as we were.

Cheers to GNO, old friends and imaginations on the playground...ok, that last one is just so I feel better about my Kindergarten antics!

xo,
E
 
 
Totally.in.love.

xo,
E
 
 
It’s Monday…a day I often dread because it means there is one less (very important) person in the house to laugh with and talk to.  I woke up on this beautiful Fall morning in a rut, missing my husband (and my family who came to town this weekend and teased me with a 36 hour visit).  I decided to get out of the house, take a walk and soak in some Vitamin D and it hit me!  It’s time to start blogging again.  I’ve been MIA for months and there’s no excuse. Not pregnancy, not work, nor having two surgeries and a baby in the last 5 weeks. Nope, none of that is excusable, but it’s kept me darn busy for a while.

It would take me an eternity to recap the events of my recent past, but in summary, we have a beautiful, healthy baby girl, Haddie; I have one less organ; we’re finally getting into a groove with this whole parenting thing; I’m so glad to have wine and coffee back in my life (in limited quantities, duh); I’m sad to have removed most dairy from my life; Oh, AND my husband is the most amazing father ever (other than my Daddy, of course).

More on all of that later.  Until then, I’ve got a diaper to change.

xo,
E

 
 
What are you doing this weekend, friends?  

We have a lengthy agenda which, for the first time in a while, is not completely baby-centric.  Tis' the season for weddings, showers, and good 'ol Texas Springtime parties!

Though I couldn't be happier with life these days, I really wish I were in Paris, sipping an Orange Fanta, sitting with my hubby, soaking in the French Springtime rays.
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Spring 2011 in Paris