Thursday, July 16, 2009

Dinner And Some Mommy Talk

{lace cap hydrangea found everywhere in our neighborhood - they always remind me of fireworks}

I'm always amazed when I get an email from someone who follows this blog. Someone really reads this thing? When I started blogging, I never expected anyone to give a darn about what I had to say, not to mention putting up with my horrible grammar and spelling (sorry!).

{where our little family hung out on Sunday}

I'm so thankful for the sweet comments and advice that I receive from many of you. You have no idea how nice it is to know that I'm not alone in this adventure of motherhood.

Recently, since I've been sharing my thoughts and feelings on being a first time mom, I've been receiving many emails asking for advice, or rather just a virtual shoulder to cry on.

{Dad and Gray (great-grandmother in the background) enjoying the nice weather on Sunday}

So, I thought it might be nice to share some new mom topics here and open it up to all of you to share your experiences and advice.

{great-grandmother's garden}

So, my first topic is regarding the "baby blues". A very sweet new baby momma of a two week old wrote in asking
" long did your "baby blues" last?"

{great-grandparent's view}

My response:

"...mine lasted for about 3-4 weeks. It was more of random bouts of emotion rather than a full fledged depression, in my case. Must've been those darn hormones! I would be giggly and happy one minute and crying the next. In fact, I still catch myself tearing up from time to time even after four months. I say, if you feel like crying then girl, cry. I thought it felt good to get the emotions out. I think women are just so sensitive, emotionally and physically, after child birth. Just try to take care of yourself. Don't be afraid to ask people for help when you need it. No one will think less of you as a mother if you need some assistance...we all do at one point or another! My only other advice would be to keep the lines of communication open with your husband. He should know what you are feeling and that it's completely normal for women to feel this way after child birth..."

I'm obviously no psychologist, not even close, just someone sharing MY experience. So, I'd love to open this up to your comments, suggestions and experiences with the "baby blues". If you feel more comfortable sharing anonymously, please do so. In this case, it's completely appropriate. Please chime in!

(courtesy of Epicurious)

My beautiful and oh-so-healthy sister-in-law, Kristin introduced me to this recipe while staying with her in NYC. She made it strickly vegetarian, but being a meat lover I decided to add some fish to the dish and served it over brown rice. It's damn good and very healthy!

Garbanzo Beans:
2 15.5-ounce cans garbanzo beans (chickpeas), drained (about 3 cups)
10 garlic cloves, peeled
2 large shallots
3 small bay leaves, preferably fresh
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
1 1/4 cups extra-virgin olive oil (note: I used 3/4 cup)
(note: I added crumbled feta to the finished dish)

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
6 garlic cloves, peeled, crushed
3 small bay leaves, preferably fresh
2 shallots, sliced
2 bunches Swiss chard, center stems cut out, leaves coarsely torn
2 cups low-salt chicken broth

Garbanzo beans:
Preheat oven to 350°F. Combine first 5 ingredients in 8x8x2-inch glass baking dish. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Pour oil over; cover dish with foil. Roast until garlic is tender, about 45 minutes. DO AHEAD: Can be made 1 day ahead. Cool slightly, cover, and chill.

Heat oil in large pot over medium-high heat. Add garlic, bay leaves, and shallots. Cover; cook until shallots are tender, about 2 minutes. Uncover; add half of chard. Toss until chard wilts and volume is reduced by half, about 2 minutes. Add remaining chard. Toss until chard wilts, about 2 minutes. Add broth. Cover and cook until chard is tender, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes. Season chard with salt and pepper. Transfer chard mixture to large sieve set over bowl and drain. DO AHEAD: Can be prepared 2 hours ahead. Let stand at room temperature.

Drain garbanzos and reserve oil; discard bay leaves. Combine garbanzos and chard in large skillet. Add 2 tablespoons oil reserved from garbanzos. Toss over medium heat until warmed through, moistening with more oil by tablespoonfuls if needed, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and serve.

For the halibut (I didn't use a recipe):
Season with a generous amount of freshly chopped thyme, chives, lemon zest and salt and pepper. Dip the fish in flour and dust off excess. In an oven proof skillet, heat up some olive oil and pan sear the fish on both sides. Place in a 400 degree oven until fish is flaky. Easy peasy. Enjoy!


Anonymous said...

I'm pregnant with my third (and last:) and with my previous two pregnancies my baby blues lasted about four weeks as well. I found some of the best things I could do was 1. getting dressed and ready for the day...make up, hair everything and 2. Trusting my hubby to watch the baby for an hour or two and get out of the house, even if just for a walk. I've heard it's very common to have to talk to the doctor if things are worse and not to feel ashamed if you have to.
PS I love this mommy/design blog! Thanks for sharing with us. Jennifer

a H.I.T. said...

I still get excited (and shocked) when I learn that people read my blog too. I think giving your experience and Mommy advice is a great idea. Husby and I hope to be new parents soon, so this will be good prep :).

Anonymous said...

After the birth of my first, my "baby blues" lasted about 2 weeks, but then it came back about 2 months later. I was severely depressed for a couple of months and finally visited the doctor. It turned out that I had developed a thyroid condition caused by my pregnancy. I now take thyroid medicine. In my case, there would have been nothing that I could have done to feel better. It is always best to get help if you feel more than just "blue." Just my two cents. :)

And YUM! I love when you blog about food. I'll have to try that one out.

vcwalton said...

I cried A LOT the first couple of weeks after I had my daughter. I thought "OMG, I have PPD!!"

I quickly called my OBGYN and got some great advice. An occasional glass of wine and lots of time with my mommy friends helped.

SharonBrown said...

When it comes to the baby blues, theres no set time frame. No one even warned me they were coming and for me they lasted about 8 months. What I wish someone would have told me was that love at first sight is only for the fairytales. Therefore obviously its rediculous to imagine that you're going to immediately love that slimy little thing the moment it pops out and turns your life upside down. Throw in a failed natural birth and emergency c-section and you have a recipe for feeling like a failed momma. I hope this helps some of the people who enjoy this blog.

the lady of the house said...

I am currently pregnant with our second son. When I had our first - I cried everyday for I swear a month, I was fighting breastfeeding - he wouldn't latch on and things were so hard! My little man actually lost weight that first month. I also was watching FAR TOO MUCH CNN. So just a word of advice for all you mamas - if you are spiritual, it takes a lot of prayer and as my dad has always said garbage in, garbage out! - also as The Stamford Wife said - communication with the hubby helps a ton! Don't forget to be patient with yourself - because 9x out of 10 that little snuggly of yours is doing a 100 and all you really need to do is just breathe and keep on doing just what you've been doing! Remembering back on how bummed out I felt I always try to encourage and lift up my fellow new mamas as I remember how tough it was and encouragement and prayer is so helpful!

Ferret And Hound said...

Oh my, I cried a little (sometimes a lot) everyday for like 4 weeks... then every couple of days for another 2-3 weeks.
Between months 2 and 3 of my daughter's birth, things were a blur. I remember driving with her in the car and her screaming her head off and me thinking, oh someone kill me now!
Then she turned 3 months (she's now 6 months) and everything changed. EVen my boss said "and one day you came in and you were your old happy self!".

C and M said...

I think my baby blues started as soon as my milk came in and lasted for a couple of weeks. The beginning was the most difficult to deal with because I was happy but would cry for 'no reason'. My husband was heading back to work in a few days and I cried as I counted down the days until that occurred. I knew I could handle the baby on my own for the day but I missed my husband. I missed him even when he was sitting right next to me. It seemed silly to be upset over because he was incredibly supportive and always there, but I just longed for him. Fortunately things evened out after about 2 weeks and I wasn't crying everyday. I also cried when the late afternoon arrived. I'm not sure if it was because the nights were so long and we never knew what to expect or what it was. Probably that along with hormones, etc. Best wishes to all the new moms out there. It's an amazing experience and I'm only 6 months in!

pve design said...

Two things my Mom taught me;
1. Get dinner going early!
2. Never do what they can do for themselves.
Never be afraid to ask for help!
3. Routines are important.

(Now about the blues, I did have them, but with twins, I was way too busy and then getting back to work helped me to get into a routine.