Saturday, July 31, 2010

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Styling C: Saturday, 07.31.10

Cati has learned that the difference between a good outfit and a great outfit is arm candy, or in her case, daddy candy and Perla candy :)

The Look: Baby in Red
The Outfit: Ebay crochet headband and flower clip,
Greendog cream top, Gap red pants

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Porterhouse at Home!

Alex's favorite steak is a porterhouse. He nearly drools himself silly whenever he sees that a restaurant has this steak on the menu. So you can imagine his excitement when we received a flyer for a local supermarket advertising porterhouse steaks for $3.99 a pound. Needless to say, we RAN to the store and bought us some steaks. Just a little salt and pepper and a dash of grill time and these babies were done and ready to be enjoyed. I am so in love with our grill and the simplicity in which meals are created.

These steaks very so pretty to look at.

What's your favorite steak for grilling?

Friday, July 30, 2010

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Styling C: Friday, 07.30.10

I love today's outfit! The reason I love it so much is because of the shoes. I sound like such a girl, ha! The shoes Cati wore today were once my shoes. I love that some of my baby clothes were kept (and in good condition) and that Cati gets to wear them. Other than her baptism, this is the only time Cati has worn shoes and she looked adorable.

Also, Katrina asked if C ever wears the same outfit. Well, in a way, no. She's repeated some pieces but never whole outfits. She has enough clothes that it's hard for me to have her wear certain things before she outgrows them. A lot of the clothes she has have been gifts so people buy according to her age size and not her weight size.

The Look: Polka Dot Fun
The Outfit: Target pink hair clip, Carter's polka dot dress, My baby shoes

Thursday, July 29, 2010

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Styling C: Thursday, 07.29.10

The Look: Parisian Chic
The Outfit: Gymboree rosette hair clip, Ebay crochet headband,
Greendog pink top, Janie & Jack Paris poodle leggings

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Creamy Pesto Pasta

We used to love going to Maggiano's in Boston and every time we went Alex ordered a chicken pesto pasta. What he liked about this dish was the fact that the pesto sauce was cream based so the pasta was saucier and smoother. I tried to recreate the dish and came up with this recipe. It was a real winner. The pasta was delicious! If you like pesto and like it to be a little "meatier" then this recipe is for you.

Pesto Pasta

8 oz pasta
1 chicken breast
Goya Adobo all purpose seasoning
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 Tbsp butter
1 tsp minced garlic
2 Tbsp flour
1 1/2 cup heavy cream
3 heaping Tbsp pre-made pesto

Cook pasta until al dente.

Meanwhile, chop chicken into small chunks. Season with salt, pepper, and Adobo. In a skillet melt 1 Tbsp butter and olive oil. Add garlic and cook for about a minute, then add chicken and cook until juices run clear. Set aside.

In saucepan, melt 1 Tbsp butter. Add flour and whisk until combined. Add heavy cream and bring to a boil (if cream doesn't thicken add a little more flour). Add pesto and season with salt.

Combine the chicken, pesto sauce, and pasta. Serve and enjoy!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

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Motherhood = Ruptured Muscles?

Motherhood is hard on all kinds of levels. It takes a toll on you physically and emotionally. What I didn't count on was how hard of an emotional toll it would take on me. It seems that at some point I ruptured my right quad muscle. I have no clue when exactly this happened. I'm not in any kind of pain (other than the pain I feel every time I look at the groove in my leg). Anyone have any experience with this?
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Styling C: Wednesday, 07.28.10

I am sooo that mom. I said I wouldn't do it but after seeing how cute Cati looked today I couldn't resist. I just had to share today's outfit with you (record book of me, right?)...and every outfit she wears from here on out. Now you can get a daily dose of home grown baby girl goodness.

The Look: Shabby Chic
The Outfit: Gymboree headband, Carter's white onesie, Janie & Jack teal

bunny cardigan, Old Navy jeans, Jazzy Toes Hamptons socks

And a little bit of catching up:

Tuesday, 07.27.10
The Look: Miami Casual
The Outfit:
Colombian bow, Gap giraffe onesie, Old Navy jeans

Monday, 07.26.10
The Look: Preppy Baby
The Outfit: Carter's collared onesie, Old Navy jeans

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Honey Madeleines

The love affair with Madeleines continues. These cookies give chocolate chip cookies stiff competition. Chocolate chip cookies will always be my one true cookie love but Madeleines are the worst kind of temptation. I have never met a chocolate chip cookie I don't like, but let's be honest here? There may be a million chocolate chip cookie recipes but, at the end of the day, you still get a chocolate chip cookie. Madeleines, on the other hand, are extremely variable. I have had traditional, white chocolate, dark chocolate, and gingerbread. All of them different and all of them delicious in their own special way.

We can go ahead and continue the hot streak with this cookie and add Honey Madeleines to the list of deliciousness. This cookie had all the essentials of a Madeleine: a beautiful hump, scalloped belly, and dense inside. This particular Madeleine had a very subtle honey flavor and reminded me of pound cake.

Honey Madeleines
Source: Martha Stewart (here)
Makes 12 cookies

4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, plus melted butter for molds
1 tablespoon honey
1/2 teaspoon pure almond or vanilla extract
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
Pinch of salt
2 large eggs
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon packed light-brown sugar
Confectioners' sugar, for dusting

In a small saucepan over low heat, melt the butter, being sure to not let the butter brown. Remove from heat, and stir in honey and almond extract (or vanilla extract). Let stand until room temperature. In a small bowl, whisk together, flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside.

In a medium bowl, using a rubber spatula mix the eggs and sugars until combined. Fold in flour mixture, until just combined. Add the cooled butter mixture, and continue to fold until combined. Cover the bowl, and refrigerate until chilled, about 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees; with rack in center. Brush madeleine molds with melted butter; set aside.

Fill each mold three-quarters full, using a spoon or a pastry bag. Do not overfill the molds. Bake until puffed, and the edges are golden brown, 8 to 10 minutes.

Remove from oven and let cool on a wire rack until pan is just cool enough to handle. Invert onto wire rack and serve warm, if possible. If not serving warm, once the madeleines are cool, sift some confectioners' sugar over the seashell side.

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Blog {r}Evolution

When I started this blog 2.5 years ago I wanted it to be about my adventures in city dining. Then I got really into baking and baking became a huge part of the blog. Then I got pregnant and had a baby and now that's a huge part of the blog. I feel like my blog has a bit of a split personality and that's all because I didn't expect this little blog to become such a huge part of my life. I thought it would be just some online record book but, the truth is, the blog literally reflects what's going on in my life. It's more than just a record book of the things around me, it's a record book of me. I love this blog and love sharing bits and pieces of my world with you. So where does this leave us? I've been trying to answer that and the best I can come up with is this: I need to stop trying to box this blog in a particular category. It's not just about my adventures in food and having a baby. It's about life and my guide to this life I'm living. With that said, I need to find balance. I do a lot more in the kitchen than what's reflected here. I also eat at more places worth reviewing. I just need to be more disciplined.

Because I don't like posts without pictures here's a preview of something new and exciting I'm doing next week. Stay tuned...

Monday, July 26, 2010

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Obsession of the Week

I am so excited about starting Cati solids in the upcoming weeks. I've checked out a bunch of books from the library (love that place!) and have done a lot of reading in preparation. I am so excited about prepping her foods and watching her explore new and diverse tastes. I plan on starting her on rice cereal and adding spices to her food. I'm hoping to in introduce her to good eating habits before she realizes how poor our eating habits are. In the meantime, I'm practicing spoon use with her and she's enjoying getting breast milk slush:

Sunday, July 25, 2010

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This Week in Mommyhood

I thought having mastitis was the worst I could ever feel. That is, until I got the stomach flu from Alex. Now THAT is the worst I could ever feel. Boob pain and a fever is one thing but fever and stomach pains is a completely different thing. I couldn't sleep, I couldn't eat, and I felt extremely fatigued. It says a lot when Alex's 89 year old Abuela was better able to take care of Cati than I was. I felt horrible , both physically and emotionally. Physically I felt like a blob and emotionally I felt horrible that I couldn't be there more for Cati (the fact that she smiled every time she saw me didn't help). But I needed to rest, otherwise I would never get better. Nearly 72 hours later and I am feeling better but the thought of food still irks me. The biggest downside of this stomach flu is that it has wreaked havoc on my milk supply. I'm talking about nearly a 20 oz loss. Luckily, Cati gets two frozen milk bottles a day so she's getting enough milk, but if it weren't for my freezer stash I wouldn't be able to keep up with her. I hope that once I am back to being fully hydrated and once my caloric intake is back up that my supply will bounce back.
Being sick made me realize (yet again) how much I would give up just to make sure that Cati is safe and healthy. I prayed and prayed that I would bear all the illness for her because the thought of her sick with the stomach flu broke my heart. I knew that if she caught this bug it would necessitate a hospital visit and that thought broke my heart even more. Alex and I have been on pins and needles the past few days analyzing and scrutinizing everything about Cati's behavior. Thankfully, she seems unaffected by the bug and I like to thank my milk for providing her with whatever antibodies she might have needed to fight off this bug.
The great news is that I got this bug at a great time (there never really is a great time) because Cati has been sleeping beautifully. Something must have went off in her head because now we can count on at least a 6 hour stretch of sleep at night. On two occasions she actually slept 8 hours straight (7pm-3:30am and 10:40pm-6:40am) and it was heavenly. I felt so refreshed and it made me so grateful for being able to survive the days of sleep in 2 hour stretches. I hope this sleeping pattern continues because I can get really used to it.
Cati has become sooo interested in food. She stares at us when we are eating and follows the food as it moves from out plates to our mouths. She often gives us a look that says, "Hey, what about me?!" I fed her some breast milk slush with a spoon this week and she actually swallowed it all; she didn't spit any of it out! Then there was some liquid left over in the bowl and she drank it like a big person would drink liquid out of a bowl. I was so proud! She is going to be so ready to start solids in a few weeks!
Another development is the "I WANT THAT NOW!" reach. If Cati sees something she wants she reaches out for it and, if she can't reach it, she gets very pissy. She'll throw her whole body at the object and then start whining until the object is moved within reach. Talk about demanding!
Cati said her official good-byes to her bassinet. She thanked it for being there for her and for giving her many nights of good sleep.
Cati loves to be in a sitting position and she can hold it for a while now. She even sat in her first high chair this week!
I try to put her on her tummy but she gets frustrated with her inability to move forward. She's able to turn in circles and move backwards but she hasn't figured out how to synchronize the movement of her legs and arms to get her to move forward. On occasion, she'll actually get up on her hands and knees but she hasn't discovered that that position will help her crawl.
Alex gave me the most beautiful necklace this week. It was his way of saying "thank you for being such a great mother." I was not expecting anything from him and was so thrown off when he gave me the necklace. Being a mom is a hard job and getting a "thank you" every now and then really helps boost morale. This gift not only made me a happy mother but also a happy wife.
The little girl is growing up. All these new developments are so exciting to witness. I never thought I could be in so much awe of a person as I am with her. I'm so lucky to be her mother and so lucky to get to share her with Alex.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

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Video: Cute Overload

We went to visit Cati's "cousin" today and it turned into the cutest little playdate this side of the equator. Emma is two months older than Cati and it's amazing how much difference two months makes. Cati pretty much sat there, played (meaning: how can I get this toy in my mouth?) with the toys in front of her, talked to herself, and occasionally looked at Emma. Emma, on the other hand, was crawling, playing with all the toys (meaning: this toy makes a cool banging noise!), and trying to interact with Cati by touching her, reaching out for her, grabbing her, climbing on her, and getting thisclose to her face. I was mommy mush watching the girls together. I can picture them growing up together and being the best of friends. I love Emma's mommy very much and if Cati loves Emma half as much as I love Emma's mommy then I'll be one proud mom because then Cati will know the joys of true friendship.

PS Cati's pants totally make me think flower power!
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Motherhood: The Great Equalizer?

I recently read It Sucked and Then I Cried: How I Had a Baby, a Breakdown, and a Much Needed Margarita by Heather A. Armstrong (aka Dooce). At one point she talks about how motherhood is an equalizer. The idea is that when it comes to motherhood we are all facing the same daunting task of caring for and raising a new human being. In becoming mothers everything falls away. It doesn't matter what out social or economic statuses are; we are all sleep deprived, food deprived, deliriously happy, and incredibly overwhelmed. We are all trying to follow our maternal instinct while dealing with the loads and loads of unsolicited advice. We are all trying to be the best mothers we can be and we want nothing more than a happy, healthy baby (and if said baby sleeps through the night and doesn't cry even better!). You suddenly have compassion for that mother struggling with a crying baby at the store and, if you are anything like me, you want to reach out to that mother and promise her that things will be ok. We are all in this struggle together and are all experiencing the same difficulties (at varying degrees). Motherhood brings us together in a way that nothing else can (when else can you talk about poop color and not get weird looks?). At the end of the day, your baby doesn't care if you are wearing designer clothing or if you are considered someone important. If he or she wants to spit up on you he or she will. We all bear the motherhood battle wounds of being peed/pooped on, being a gigantic bib, and having our bodies go from round and proud to a sometimes unrecognizable form of your pre-baby body (c-section scars, saggy boobs, stretch marks, you name it and our bodies have it).


For the past few years whenever I would argue with my mom about something related to my siblings and me, she would always cut me off and say, "you don't understand because you aren't a mother." Now really? How can you argue with that logic? When I was pregnant I was anxious to have Cati here with us so that she could no longer use that logic to brush aside my thoughts and feelings. I would be a mother and I guess while in the process of giving birth to my daughter I would also give birth to mother knowledge. We would be equals and would be able to communicate in the most sacred mother language. I mean, there must be a sacred language, right? Otherwise, how would I understand something I didn't before I was a mother? Well, I became a mother and during our first argument post-baby she told me I didn't understand because I wasn't the mother of an adult. Ahhh! When would enough be enough? Would I never be an equal? Sure, I don't know what it's like to parent anything other than a baby, but my heart as a mother swells just as much as hers. That argument occurred 19 weeks ago and I have not spoken to her since. She has not seen Cati since Cati was a week old. As a daughter, I am angry and resentful. As a mother, however, I am confused and heartbroken. I can never imagine not being involved in Cati's life, especially during such a beautiful time. But my type of motherhood isn't enough to match her type of motherhood. We aren't equals. In her opinion, I will never understand anything she goes through because I'm five steps behind. There is no common bond of motherhood. No shared experience and no shared hope for the future life of a developing human being.


In some cases, motherhood isn't an equalizer. It's more of a destabilizer. In some cases, motherhood divides mothers (breastfeeding v. bottle feeding, c-section v. vaginal, cry it out approaches, attachment parenting, etc). The common bond we all share in bringing new life to the world is severed because of our differences in approaches. While we may sympathize with one another we may also be the most judgmental. So if we all do share this experience and struggle with the same things, why aren't we more supportive of one another?
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Reviewed: Yogurt Bliss

I may just have a new eating obsession. I went to Yogurt Bliss this week and fell in love. It's an ice cream/yogurt lover's dream: ten yogurt flavors (vanilla, chocolate, strawberry, tart original to name a few) and 40 different toppings. From sauces to fruits to cookies to candy, the combination of cold confections are endless and you can create whatever combination you want. You pay by the weight ($.48 per oz) and it's worth every penny to get your cold dessert done your way. I went a little overboard and had 11.5 oz of vanilla yogurt topped with nuts, snickers, cookie dough, Hershey's syrup, hot fudge, and caramel (and yes I ate it all). It was sooo worth it!

Yogurt Bliss is located in Coral Gables at 1554 S. Dixie Highway.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

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Coconut Milk Cookies

I had leftover coconut milk from the Lots of Ways Banana Cake and tried to come up with a cookie recipe. All the coconut recipes I found contained shredded coconut so I winged it. These cookies came out more cakey than I expected and had a very, very mild coconut flavor. They smelled beautifully though. I put a little coconut rum glaze on the cookies but I think the cookies would have tasted better with a thick frosting instead of a glaze. Alex said the cookies taste how you'd expect suntan lotion to taste.

Coconut Milk Cookies

1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/4 cup sugar
1 egg
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/4 cup coconut milk
2 Tbsp coconut rum
3/4 cup flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar. Add egg and vanilla and beat for 1 minute.

In a small bowl, combine the coconut milk and rum. In another small bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt. Alternating, beginning and ending with the flour mixture, add the dry and wet ingredients.

Using a cookie scoop, scoop batter onto baking sheets 3 inches apart from one another. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until firm to the touch. Remove from oven. Let cool. Serve and enjoy!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

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TWD: Lot’s of Ways of Banana Cake

I loved this cake. I was all about it. I omitted the shredded coconut and used coconut rum. My glaze was a combination of coconut rum and powdered sugar. The resulting cake was a tropical dream. To me the cake tasted like bananas added to a pina colada. I made half the recipe and there was enough batter for 6 cakelettes. Don't let the banana deter you from trying this recipe, though. One of Alex's friends who doesn't like bananas enjoyed the cake and actually went home with two of them.

Thanks to Kimberly of Only Creative Opportunities for this week's selection. Make sure to stop by her blog for the recipe and TWD's site to read about other reactions to this recipe.