Monday, November 19, 2012

Happy Days are Here Again!

So, I have had a big resurgence of fun in my life in New Orleans as my morning sickness has slowly but surely begun to subside. However, I have been AWFUL at documenting it. I have practically taken zero pictures over the past couple weeks which have basically been the best we have had here in the Big Easy.

Just to catch up so as not to forget any of the memories we are making during this exciting season of our lives, I am going to make a list.

1. Two weekends ago my sister-in-law Heather and her friend Amanda came for the weekend. We had a great time exploring the entire city. We spent a great day down in the business district and French Quarter that included a stop at Anthroplogie which made me extremely happy! I am loving their Christmas ornaments right now!

2. We ate at a little restaurant on Jackson Square called Rivers Edge. It was sort of blah… definitely not the best New Orleans seafood by any stretch. However, dinner was redeemed with beignets and hot chocolate at CafĂ© Du Monde followed by a really interesting haunted history tour in the Quarter. What a sordid past (and present) this city has!

3. We had our 16 week doctor appointment and it was totally uneventful and great!

 4. The seminary held a holiday market where folks set up booths and sold handmade items. My favorite by far was the free sample of wassail in the Lifeway store (not from a booth nor handmade, whoops!). And Andrew won a raffle. Two handmade bars of soap… cool!

5. Two of my sweet seminary friends invited me to run in the Color Run with them this past Saturday and boy am I glad I did! It was ridiculously fun and so weird! I loved it. Thanks Stasia and Leah!!

6. One of my BFF’s from college and her husband came to NOLA for a babymoon this weekend and we had the pleasure of hosting them Saturday night. Autumn is 28 weeks preggo with a sweet baby girl named Snow. We ate at a FANTASTIC restaurant called Olivier’s down in the Quarter. All four of us completely cleaned our plates… I mean completely. That’s how good it was. The best part might have been finding a parking spot on the street right by the restaurant. This never happens to us!

7. We have been attending a church called Edgewater Baptist and yesterday we had a fantastic service followed by what might have been the best church potluck I have ever attended. And my husband is in ministry so I have been to my fair share. And we are Baptist. This is saying a lot. I completely skipped the meat and went for about 5 different casseroles and a bowl of bread pudding that I don’t currently have the vocabulary to describe. It was DIVINE.

As we gear up for Thanksgiving, I think it is apparent that one thing that I am truly thankful for this year in the return of my appetite. Praise the Lord it’s just in time for my mother-in-law's sweet potatoes!!

Linking up today for YOLO Monday

Friday, November 16, 2012

Easy Chicken and Dumplings

Ya'll. I haven't posted a recipe in quite a while. Heck, I haven't had a recipe to post in quite a while. Unless basic instructions for pouring a bowl of Raisin Bran count. 

But lately, I have been getting back in the kitchen and last night we had a meal that was too good and too easy NOT to post. 

It was a really shortcutish, mostly boxed and canned, version of chicken and dumplings and I really had very low expectations that it would be good, much less something  I would share with anyone.

I mean chicken and dumplings is one of those things that is usually only good when someones grandma uses a century old biscuit recipe and a 19 hour stock making process. Or when it comes from Cracker Barrel. 

I don't claim to be a chicken and dumplings expert, but these seemingly rudimentary ingredients made for a fast, bang-up meal on a cold winters night (of 63 degrees because we live in South Louisiana remember?).

I didn't take pictures because, duh, it wasn't supposed to be that good. But here is the picture from where the recipe was originally posted, However, this is my tweaked version based on some recommendations I read in the reviews and our preferences.

Easy Chicken and Dumplings

32 oz reduced sodium chicken broth
2 cans cream of chicken soup (we used low fat kind)
2 tsp Better Than Bouillon reduced sodium chicken base (or reg chicken bouillon)
3-4 (or more) carrots sliced into coin sized pieces
1 rotisserie chicken, meat pulled off the bone 
1-2 tsp. dried thyme
pepper ( lots!)
1 can Pillsbury grands jumbo buttermilk biscuits 

Mix every thing except the biscuits in a stock pot and bring it to a boil.
While you are waiting on it to boil, flatten each biscuit with your hands and use a pizza cutter to cut them into dumpling sized pieces (or you can  just tear them with your hands). Once everything in the pot is boiling, start dropping the dumplings into the pot a few at a time. They will puff up and it will get crowded, don't worry. Just stir it every few times your put dumplings in to make sure they are not sticking together. Once they are all in, give it a good stir and reduce it to a simmer. Cover and let simmer about 15-20 minutes. Stir a few times throughout. While they simmer, the dumplings will shrink back down and everything will thicken a little more. Taste it for flavor... I ended up adding more pepper and thyme at the end. 

I'm linking up today with Kelly's Korner, probably one of my favorite bloggers on the planet. She is just the sweetest cutest wife and mother EVER. Of course I don't know her in real life but I secretly wish we were friends! 

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Oh Baby

So, I haven't said a whole lot here on the old blog lately, mostly because the past 3 months have been, well... tough. 

I hate to complain because I know that so many people, friends of mine even, are longing for a little one and would trade the wait for my morning sickness any day.

But I've got to be real. There have been some days where I thought it would kill me. Days where I could not understand how anyone ever survived a pregnancy AND chose to do it more than once. Does pregnancy make you lose your food and your marbles?

I am super fortunate that I have been prescribed a medicine that seems to keep the actual vomiting at bay (not the nausea in its entirety) but EVERY time I have tried to stop taking it, guess what happens? Yes, even as recently and this Monday. Hello 15 weeks! I thought you would be a little more kind. 

I have had a few really good days sprinkled in lately. I have actually been able to stomach the smell of my kitchen and prepare food. Not everyday, but some. My appetite is better and I find myself more motivated to do things other than wear sweatpants and watch E News. 

So here's to things looking up! I am clinging to the hope that I WILL feel 100% better by 20 weeks, maybe even by Thanksgiving. Please Lord! 

In the meantime, here are some funny things that have happened since we have known about little Johnny Appleseed. And in case you didn't know, it's hip to compare your fetus to a fruit and ours is now the size of an apple. However, we wont know if it is a Johnny or June until early December.

Dear sweet husband of mine tried to order What to Expect When You are Expecting and we wound up with this. Somehow we skipped right past needing this manual.  
This book obviously gives useful advice. I mean who would have known without reading? 
And what baby wouldn't need a Whirlpool Bubbling Spa and Shower? Can we get that in my size?
I haven't read Fifty Shades of Grey so I would never have know it to be recommended for postnatal and postpartum care. hmm...

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