When life hands you pumpkins

I don’t know about you but there’s something about Fall that always seems to bring me back to life. To say it’s my favorite time of year would be an understatement; Halloween is my favorite holiday (yes even more than Christmas,) I got married in the Fall and last October our little dude entered the world. This year more than ever I feel like I am so caught up in the hecticness of daily life, from trying to manage an-almost toddler to still being a present wife, daughter and friend. It can be so overwhelming and one thing I’ve noticed amongst parents is this sense of competition;  “my kid walked by this age, my kid already eats those things, my kid doesn’t sleep like that” etc etc etc. Now don’t get me wrong I’ve been finding a great support system in the parenting community but this sense of competition amongst friends, strangers, social media and so on is crazy to me. Growing up I can remember my dad always telling me to not compare my grades to the other kids and to try to do well for myself, not to be like others who maybe did better than me. All I know after this year is that parenting is hard, and every child, every teenager, every adult is different. We all do things our own way and we should embrace the differences in our kids rather than criticize them. It’s so awesome to see parents come together and support one another by offering advice or to be a sounding board, which as we know is more than necessary to keep our sanity. As my little dudes 1st birthday approaches I hope to gain more confidence as a parent and realize we’re all doing good as long as our kids are happy. That being said, excuse me while I go get a hot coffee, throw on a sweater and geek out over finally having some cold weather.  

 

Go-to Garlic Salmon

The older our tiny human gets the harder it’s been getting to try new and extravagant dinners so I’m relying on my go-to meals more than ever lately. This is a super simple recipe that doesn’t break the bank and requires limited prep time. My husband loves this one and I don’t even think he realizes how healthy it is, so shh don’t tell him! If you try this or add a yummy spin on it I’d love to hear about it. Mangia! 

Garlic-Soy Salmon

Ingredients

  1. Wild salmon (2 steaks or however many you prefer for the amount of people you are feeding)
  2. Fresh garlic
  3. Soy sauce (I use Kikkoman less sodium)
  4. Lemon
  5. Asparagus
  6. Rice pilaf (I use Uncle Ben’s microwave bag)

Directions

     Coat two pans with your choice of olive oil. Finely chop half of a clove of garlic and separate evenly between both pans. Asparagus goes in one pan with the salmon steaks in the other. Cut end off of lemon and squeeze onto both asparagus and salmon, begin to cook. After cooking for one minute add a couple of tablespoons of soy sauce onto salmon. Now I like to shred my salmon and remove the skin but I recommend you prepare the salmon however you like. Cook rice and prepare onto plate: asparagus ontop of rice with shredded salmon to the side, cut second end of lemon and squeeze over whole meal. Pour a glass of wine and enjoy! 

 

Hellooooo October!!

Well it’s officially my favorite time of year. Things have been so hectic lately between planning Sean’s first birthday party, starting Play School and trying to maintain somewhat of a social life, but I’m trying to stop and smell the roses so to say. Sean loves going to school and I am enjoying it a lot more than I thought. Once a week I get to go somewhere with him where he can play with other babies and I also get to spend time with other parents. It’s a welcoming environment that allows us to vent, exchange joys and concerns, offer advice and just relax. It has made me realize that as parents we all have issues; no baby is the same, we need to be easier on ourselves and learn to support one another. Finding a community amongst parents is more important than I realized, and being one of the only one of my friends with a child I am so glad I found a school that encourages parental support and forming friendships. 

Now if this weather would chill out I’m getting anxious to get my pumpkin patch on. Halloween is my favorite day of the year and my son decided to be born on October 29 last year so needless to say this month is going to be ridiculously fun..busy, but fun. Im looking to try some new pumpkin and apple recipes over the next few weeks if anyone has any they love I’d love to hear some ideas or recipes. Aside from pumpkin patches what else are some fun Fall activities for families or couples?  

  

I’ll take an extra large coffee and a vacation thank you

Im not one to go to social media or my blog to complain or rant but I know I’m not the first parent to say this and I certainly won’t be the last: holy lord I am so TIRED! And yes of course you’re tired from the minute your baby enters the world but lately I have been feeling like my energy ranges from 1-3 on a scale of 10. The poor thing is teething like crazy lately which overall has led to lack of sleep and some stressful days. He’s crawling now which is so fun but as you know it means never sitting down for more than a few seconds..how are they so fast?! If people ask me what I want for Christmas this year I’m sticking with a lifetime supply of coffee or a tropical vacation, or both obviously. On the other hand our little dude will be ONE next month…how is that possible?! I always thought parents who went over the top for their kids first birthdays were nuts because the babies barely know what’s going on and don’t remember..but I totally get it now. I am going to go broke by the time I’m done making trips to Michaels Arts and Crafts, so far I’ve started a backdrop for the candy bar, have made some signs, put a food menu together, bought decor from Etsy and I’m still not done..my poor poor husband and wallet don’t stand a chance. Any advice or favorite parts of your child’s first birthday? We are doing a Superhero theme, which needless to say got my husband way too excited. It’s hard to believe we’re already getting things for his birthday together because I’m fairly certain I’m in major denial that he will actually be a toddler before we know it. 

Adventure is my middle name! Well not really but you get itΒ 

Is this weather crazy or what? It is so warm even in the city, which for those of you unfamiliar with San Francisco, is rare. Today we ventured right outside of the city to a town called Sausalito amd celebrated my husband’s grandparents anniversary (yeah, that’s a mouth full.) Few things make me happier than getting out of the house with the family and going on an adventure, especially if it’s somewhere I haven’t been before. I’m sure I’m not the only one who realizes that sometimes we take our surroundings for granted because we are so used to them and our daily routines are so scheduled. I’m realizing it’s important to take the time and experience the beautiful places in our own backyard, so to say. I hope our lil guy enjoys adventures as much as I do and that we can help him appreciate nature. It worries me how reliant children are on social media and technology these days for entertainment, and while I wouldn’t want Sean to miss out on that, I also want him to be able to have experiences like did growing up; building forts, playing in the mud, climbing trees and then some. Do any of you who have kids have advice on how to balance the intense technology and the simple things in life as your kids get older?  

 

Stop and smell the roses

Happy August everyone, the Sunday of summer! Anyone else kind of confused as to how it can already be August? I feel like it was January five minutes ago. I was reminded the other day that my little human will be one years old in just two and a half months..people always tell you time flies by once your baby gets here but wow..what an understatement. I remember when I was pregnant last year during the hottest summer on record here, I prayed for time to just hurry up, now all I want is it to slow the heck down. Sean is quickly becoming a little man with his very own personality and I want to hold onto these moments as much as I can. Today we strolled around the park, him in his little baseball shirt, me with a large coffee in hand (per usual); I saw so many people with their toddlers running around and realized how soon that will be him and that I need to appreciate this pre-walking baby phase as much as possible. Sean loved looking at all the kids running around and laughed as they screamed and played tag..oh to be young again. I’m looking forward to the days when he can run around and talk, but don’t get me wrong, I’m in no hurry! It’s so fun watching our little ones grow up, and we grow up right along with them. Three quarters of the time I feel like I have no idea what I’m doing, there’s definitely no manual for becoming a parent and I may look like a mess or feel like a zombie sometimes but he’s happy and healthy, that’s what counts and in return makes me happier than I’ve ever been.  What have been some of your favorite memories with your little humans?

 

Low fat dinner, happy tastebuds

Happy Monday everyone, I hope it’s not toooo bad! Over the weekend I surprised myself by making some things that were very low in fat and my husband actually liked..I know, hold for applause. I made a reduced guilt taco salad (minus the taco) and frozen yogurt dabs. I shop at Trader Joes but you can modify the ingredients for where you shop. I will start with the yogurt dabs because they are embarrassingly easy and should be done first to be put in the freezer for a few hours. I hope you give these a try and let me know if you make changes that I can try out the next time I make this! 

Yogurt Dabs

Ingredients 

  • Trader joes non fat pomegranate Greek yogurt 
  • Trader joes non fat black raspberry Greek yogurt
  • Parchment paper

Take a tablespoon and scoop enough yogurt to cover the spoon, then use your finger to slide yogurt onto parchment paper. Carefully life the paper (might want to use two people for this) and place on freezer for a few hours, they freeze pretty quickly. Take off of parchment paper and enjoy! ..told you it was easy. 

Reduced guilt taco salad

Ingredients

  • Lean ground beef or ground turkey
  • Trader joes reduced guilt guacamole made with Greek yogurt
  • Light sour cream
  • Trader joes taco seasoning 
  • Romaine lettuce
  • Mexican blend cheese 
  • Salsa or tomatoes 

Place meat on the stove, once it starts to brown add 1/4 package of taco seasoning (if you like it very strong add more) Wash romaine and place in bowls while meat cooks. When meat is ready spoon over the lettuce, top with the sour cream, guacamole and cheese. I did not add the salsa on mine because with no gall bladder it’s hard for me to eat spicy foods right now but normally I would add chunky salsa as well. This is so easy and quick to make but satisfying, perfect for busy parents and students. Now eat up!