Friday, June 29, 2012

LA Zoo

Since the LA Zoo is pretty much our backyard, Matt and I decided to get membership passes a year ago thinking we'd go at least a couple times a year.  We only went once.  Now that we have Leah, we have more of a reason to go.  We renewed our passes and finally took her today.  With the passes, we didn't feel obligated to stay for a really long time, so we just decided to check out a few of the areas and see how she responded to it.  We went to see giraffes, elephants, gorillas, and orangutans.  It's hard to see in the picture, but the mama orangutan was carrying a 9 month old baby.  It was so cute!  I think Leah was more interested in watching all the people, especially other kids, than the animals.  There were camp kids everywhere, and I look forward to bringing Leah when she's more aware of the animals. 

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Crystal's Baby Shower

Today I was able to attend Crystal's baby shower.  I left Leah at home with Matt and was able to actually wear a nice silk blouse and heels!  I haven't worn heels in so long, I almost couldn't really walk in them.  

Matt left for church in the morning with Leah.  Before he left, he went over her schedule with me.  He was so nervous about missing something that he wrote it down.  This is his chicken scratch below.  It's all scribbled out because he crossed out each line item as he did them.   Yes, one of the line items says "play."

The shower was held at Rachelle's house, and Rachelle did a beautiful job with the theme and decor.  Jeri-Faye also attended, and I was so excited catch up with her.  The food was great - bagels and lox, quiche, yogurt parfaits, homemade pop tarts, cupcakes, and mimosas.  I, of course, didn't pass up on some champagne.  We also played a game where we had to match the celebrity baby with the celebrity couple.  Is it embarrassing to say that I knew 17 out of 20?

Crystal looked beautiful, and I can't wait to meet baby Hudson.  So many of my friends are pregnant this year, which means more friends for Leah!  Congrats Crystal!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Mom Meals: Capellini with Scallops, Tomatoes, and Basil

This recipe is from Ina Garten and I added the scallops. 
Capellini with Scallops, Tomatoes, and Basil
Serves 6 
Kosher salt
1/2 cup good olive oil, plus extra for the pot and scallops
3 teaspoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons minced garlic (6 cloves)
4 pints small cherry tomatoes or grape tomatoes
18 large basil leaves, julienned
2 tablespoons chopped fresh curly parsley
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
3/4 pound dried capellini or angel hair pasta
1 1/2 cups freshly grated Parmesan cheese
18-24 scallops 
Extra chopped basil and grated Parmesan, for serving

1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add 2 tablespoons of salt and a splash of oil to the pot.

2. Meanwhile, heat the 1/2 cup of olive oil in a large (12-inch) saute pan. Add the garlic to the oil and cook over medium heat for 30 seconds. Add the tomatoes, basil, parsley, thyme, 2 teaspoons salt, the pepper, and red pepper flakes. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook for 5 to 7 minutes, tossing occasionally, until the tomatoes begin to soften but don't break up.

3. While the tomatoes are cooking, add the capellini to the pot of boiling water and cook for 2 minutes, or according to the directions on the package. Drain the pasta, reserving some of the pasta water.

4. In another saute pan, add the butter and oil on high heat.  Salt and pepper the scallops. Once the fat begins to smoke, gently add the scallops, making sure they are not touching each other. Sear the scallops for 1 1/2 minutes on each side. The scallops should have a 1/4-inch golden crust on each side while still being translucent in the center. 

4. Place the pasta in a large serving bowl, add the tomatoes and Parmesan and toss well. Add some of the pasta water if the pasta seems too dry. Serve large bowls of pasta with extra basil sprinkled on top and a big bowl of extra Parmesan on the side. 

Thursday, June 21, 2012

7 Months!

Leah is 7 months today!  I feel like so much has changed in just the past month!  She's still such a happy and giggly baby and here are some other updates on her:
  • She can finally sit up on her own.  That is probably her biggest milestone in the past month.  She went from needed support one day, to sitting on her own the next.  Occasionally, she will lose her balance and tip over, but otherwise, she's a good sitter.  
  • She really has a sense of object permanence.  If we hide a toy behind a small box, she'll move the box out of the way to get to the toy.  When I cover her face with my shirt while she's nursing, she'll unlatch and look over the shirt to find me.  Peek-a-boo is really fun now.
  • She notices tiny details.  She will stare at one strand of hair hanging loose from my ponytail and grab it.  She'll also see movement from the corner of her eye and direct her attention towards it immediately. 
  • Starting to get stranger anxiety.  When she's not familiar with someone, she'll look frantically for me and whine.  Now that she's used to her day care caretakers, she happily goes to their arms.  But when my mom carried her, after not seeing her for 2 weeks, she had a very worried look on her face.  
Happy 7 months, Leah!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Baby Dedication

Today, we had a baby dedication for Leah at our church.  Both sides of the family came up to celebrate with us.  8 other babies were getting dedicated that day, and I was nervous how she would hold up especially since the pastor would hold her for a little while to say a prayer.  They did the ceremony towards the beginning of the service, so she didn't have to sit and wait for that long.  Once we got on the stage, Leah started saying "MAMAMAMA" really loud!  It was funny, so I couldn't help but laugh, but I put the binky in her mouth to quiet her down.  She was great throughout the whole thing!  She was super observant to what was going on around her and didn't make a peep when the pastor took her.  The baby next to us was balling, so I was at least relieved she wasn't like that. 

Afterwards, everyone came over to our house for brunch.  I made cheesy polenta with a vegetable option and Italian sausage option.  Everyone dug in before I was able to snap any pictures!  I also got an amazing fruit tart from Portos.  It was so cute seeing all the cousins, big and small, play with each other.  It was such a fun day with the family.  

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Happy Father's Day!

Matt got to celebrate his first Father's Day! Since Sunday was Leah's baby dedication at church and the whole family was coming up to visit, I told Matt he could open his gifts Saturday so that we could celebrate as a threesome.  Unfortunately, once the day started going, I totally forgot until we were getting ready to put Leah to bed.  So right before we put her in her crib, I got the gifts and snapped some pictures.  Happy Father's Day, Matt!  Leah is so blessed to have you as a daddy!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Mom Meals: Chocolate "Cup" Cakes

When I finally made the decision to be a stay-at-home mom, I had visions of cooking up gourmet meals and baking lots of sweet treats.  Little did I know that, realistically, I only had about 45 minutes of cooking before Leah wanted some attention.  Recently, I've been able to find some really easy recipes that I made in 30 minutes or less and were really yummy!  This one I found in People Magazine by Michael Symon.  Baking using a microwave!  Genius!  Enjoy!

Chocolate "Cup" Cakes
Serves 4
8 oz butter
8 oz dark chocolate chopped
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup flour
4 eggs
1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp orange zest
whipped cream/ice cream

1. Put butter and chocolate in a glass bowl. Microwave for 1 minute on highest setting. Stir until melted
2. In another bowl, whisk sugar, flour, eggs, salt, and orange zest. Whisk in chocolate mixture. Divide among 4 cups/mugs
3. Place mugs in microwave for 3 minutes on highest setting and let cool. Top with whipped cream or ice cream. 

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Splendid and Ella Moss Sample Sale

I decided to brave the Splendid and Ella Moss sample sale this morning.  Originally, I was just going to take a quick trip to downtown by myself.  Matt ended up wanting to come with me, and I'm so glad we all went!  It was definitely a zoo down there with women in every corner looking at clothes, grabbing clothes, and trying on clothes.  There was even a woman who brought an empty stroller to pile clothes in it.  Having the stroller was great for us!  Whenever people saw the stroller with a baby coming through, they cleared the way for us.  As a result, I was able to find some good stuff without a bunch of grabby women around me!

After the sale, we went to Bottega Louie for breakfast.  Like I've mentioned before, you never realize how baby friendly places are when you don't have a baby.  Bottega Louie is a big open restaurant, and  there was probably a baby or small child at every other table.  They sat us at a table that had a perfect spot for us to park our stroller.  When I busted out a bottle to feed Leah, our server brought over a cup of hot water so I could warm it!  The food was great, and the desserts were amazing! We had a really fun, relaxing morning.

Friday, June 8, 2012


Leah has been talking a lot lately.  And when she talks she can be LOUD.  She must get that from her father. :)  One of the "words" she has been saying lately is Mama, or more like Mamamama.  Does she really mean Mama?  Sometimes I think yes, because she mostly says it around me.  Sometimes I think no, because I'm not sure if she can comprehend that yet.  I'll give her the benefit of the doubt.  

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