With maternity leave officially a week in, and no baby, I’ve been more productive than I can remember in a long time. I cannot sit still. I guess this is partially what they call “nesting?”
Things I have done in the last week:
1. Cooking and baking like a champion… So I’ve made this – very good, super easy, but extremely cheesy and rich – beware! And these – which appear in photos as if I’ve created some very fancy holiday candies – but really are the easiest thing I’ve made so far, and if you look, I seem to state that everything I’ve made recently is easy (at 39 weeks pregnant, I’m sticking to straightforward recipes lately).
And OMG – these mushrooms – which are life changing. Jake wants them all the time now. So delicious and, you guessed it, super easy as well. Now yesterday I decided I needed to try to make rice pudding – which is a relatively newfound love for me. I can’t say I had ever tried/eaten rice pudding before maybe a year or so ago, because, let’s face it, the name itself is pretty unappealing. My brain conjures up an image of porridge – some mucky, sticky stew based desert that has a starchy grain as its main ingredient. But damn, I was missing out. I love me some rice pudding now. Especially the vanilla coconut one I made!!!! Thank you Molly Wizenberg of Orangette and Delancey fame! I got the recipe straight from her very entertaining book which I finished yesterday as well. Also from Ms Wizenberg’s book is a pork shoulder percolating in the fridge – to be slow roasted later today – it bathed overnight in a sweet-hot thyme/garlic infused rub. We will see how that turns out tonight.
And lastly, these cookies – which, in all fairness, I made like 2 weeks ago right before Thanksgiving, but I had to share because if you love pumpkin and soft cookies and chocolate (who doesn’t) then you must make these. They are the SOFTEST cookies I’ve ever made. I guess due to the oil rather than butter in the recipe. I’m learning things over here!
2. Cleaning… Oh my gosh, my house is spotless. I guess it’s good to start out that way before kids come and it’ll all go to hell.
3. Online shopping… In my defense, only for Christmas presents for others. Ok, so maybe a purchase or two for me, but mostly for others!!! Amazon Prime will be the death of me. How did I ever get by without this highly enabling, highly dangerous membership?!
4. Christmas decorating… The moment we told my parents we were house hunting last year, long before we even closed or moved in to our humble abode that I love so much, they had already started packing up all of my old things which were still taking up space in their basement. This included many things I had long since forgotten about (high school yearbooks, random souvenirs I bought abroad in college, old CDs), but also, it included the set of Christmas ornaments my grandmother has been giving me every year since I was born. I’ve amassed quite a collection in my 33 years. Along with the ornaments came a nativity set that I have vivid memories of incessantly re-arrainging in our old house in Bath, New York. I was (ok; am) a bit obsessive about organizing/arranging things. My parents used to have to punish me for changing my room around because they would come home to find my bed on the opposite wall; and I was an 80lbs, 12 year old girl. “You’ll give yourself a hernia,” they said. What a weirdo I was. So I was also obsessive about this nativity set. My brother (or sister, let’s face it, who knows) would move 1 of the pieces and the moment I noticed, I would have to move everything around again. So now that I’m the co-boss in this house, I can put anything wherever I like.
5. Labor inducing walks around the neighborhood… No further description necessary. Except that, it hasn’t worked yet. But I’ve gotten to capture some beautiful unfiltered/unedited sky colors on my iPhone.
Ok, so I think it’s time for this baby to make an appearance before a) I gain 20lbs from all this food I’m making, b) I spend all of my money on more and more christmas presents, and c) my house becomes a gaudy christmas fiasco mess.