Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Recipe: Lentil Pancakes & Corn/Tomato Soup

These days, I'm always on a quest to add more protein to my diet. It's not an easy task for a pregnant vegetarian to get the to the requisite approx 60 grams of protein per day (that's according to my small frame). I try to eat eggs every morning, a greek yogurt at some point in the day, tons of cheese, quinoa, tofu, lentils, beans and milk, but I am often falling short.

I made these lentil pancakes using this recipe, but modified it to exclude carrots & coconut (just according to my own taste!). I served the pancakes with my family's famous cilantro chutney, and made a soup to top it off.



The soup started out as a corn and tomato soup, but I added celery, chillies, and 1/2 cup of tofu (instead of heavy cream) for creaminess and protein. I topped it off with mint leaves and fresh black pepper.



Delicious & nutritious. YUM.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Weekend Roundup


1. Making fresh tangerine juice with my adorable baby J. Who is no longer a baby, but an increasingly independent, opinionated, and fiesty little girl!! She loved every drop. So sweet.

2. Started pre-natal yoga (finally!) this weekend. It was so deeply calming and relaxing, I even fell asleep at one point. I awoke to a cucumber scented towel and lemon/ginger water. Bliss.

3. Celebrated my close friend's bridal shower at Cibo in NYC. It was such a beautiful event where she wrote an amazing speech honoring all the strong, loving women in her life. Everyone was in tears. What a happy day!

4. I finished (in about 48 hours), this incredible, fascinating and addictive book - Ready Player One. Book review coming soon.

How was your weekend?

Friday, March 22, 2013

Recipe: Sesame-Ginger Baked Tofu & Fried Rice

I used this recipe to make this light, tasty and healthy tofu dish.


Then I decided to make a heavy, filling and semi-fatty fried rice to balance it out :)


I used this recipe for the fried rice, making a few alterations (adding siracha, corn and peas) and adding a fried egg for some extra taste and protein. This was so quick to make and mostly healthy. Try it this weekend!

Monday, March 18, 2013

Weekend Roundup


1. Went to Medieval Times on Friday night... enjoyed dinner while watching a fun (and somewhat cheesy) show. There were horses, knights in armour, a King... while we were all crowned lords and ladies. We went with another couple friend and all had a great time!

2. On Saturday morning, we set out to East Hampton for a short weekend of relaxing and good eating. Little J loved going for a long walk on the beach, skipping rocks, and feeding two friendly ducks in the harbor. It was an unseasonably warm and sunny day!

3. Hubby and I got in a date night with a great and fun dinner at Almond in Bridgehampton... I loved my Arugula & Roquefort salad with baby beets and candied walnuts. YUM.

4. Spicy corn on the cob grilled on a wintry but cozy Sunday afternoon :)

Hope you all had a great weekend too!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Baby Essentials: What You Need the First 6 Months

Figuring out what you need to get for a new baby can be so confusing and overwhelming. This post is to help you streamline the options and narrow down to what's necessary. The first 6 months are all about feeding, sleeping and cuddling. Here are the essentials you will need!

Feeding:
pump + bottles  this is the best pump you can buy, but renting a hospital grade one is a great choice too
hands free bra  seems ridiculous but I promise it will save you lots of time and frustration


boppy + a cute slipcover  for nursing, but also for newbies to wear while holding your precious baby



Sleeping:
swaddles I LOVE everything by Aden & Anais
cotton onesies I love the ones from Dwell Studio



head nuzzle  to use in the basinette, in the car, in the stroller...
basinette/cosleeper + sheets  I want to get this modern & sleek one!
blankets  my favorite baby gift is a personalized blanket... perfect for cuddling


sleep sack when they are out of the swaddle



Clothing:
cute clothes!! I love Tea Collection, Zutano, Gap Baby and Ralph Lauren for layette
socks like the cute ones by Trumpette

mittens & hats to keep them warm
a cozy bundle me for the car seat & stroller
bibs for drool & spit up to save your nice clothes, too

Gear:
stroller that will last a long time (even with two tots!)

car seat that is compatible with the stroller you choose
a glider for reading, nursing, cuddling, soothing
crib & changing table so many options!
crib bedding


carrier with the heart 2 heart insert so it will last a while

video monitor with night vision, zoom, pan & tilt features and a large range, and if you're extra crazy like me, the angel care monitor tracks the baby's movement & breathing as well as temperature!
humidifier there are so many options, but this is necessary for the little colds & coughs
swing to soothe, put to sleep, rock the baby when you're tired


bottle sterilizer
sound machine for white noise - trust me, this is the best one to soothe your baby and induce deep sleep
bottle warmer for the perfect temperature every time

For Mom:
nursing bra/night bra go atleast one size up, if not two!
herbs for milk production - I recommend Fenugreek, Shatavari & Mother's Milk Tea
diaper bag - there are so many options from Skip Hop to Gucci! Enjoy the selection



Bathing/Healthcare: all of these are available on amazon!
mustela products
tub + sling



alcohol + cotton swabs for the bellybutton
aquaphor
nasal aspirator this one looks gross but gets the job done!


baby oil for massages
diapers
wipes
desitin to prevent diaper rash
bottle drying rack

Just for Fun:
mobile this one is perfect for infants!
soft toys to stimulate their mind


lots of books to read together
lullabies to listen to and sing



activity mat for tummy time, hanging out, and learning about colors

to chronicle the little ones milestones
so you can make sure to cherish every memory
fun wall decals for the nursery


these adorable sculptures to liven up any nursery!






Monday, March 11, 2013

TWO!

I can't believe my baby girl turned TWO this weekend. We had a fun-filled weekend of celebrations, spending time with family, eating lots of cake, and hosting a party at the Children's Museum of Manhattan. Little J had so much fun!

Here's a quick look back at her younger days.... I love reminscing with these pictures!

    



 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
little J, since you were born, you have filled our lives with love and laughter...I can't believe how much you've grown, and I love seeing every day how you are becoming a funny, clever, creative and ambitious little girl. You are such a happy ball of energy, you impress us every day with your memory and we are in awe of your intelligence. From your love of swimming & bathtime, to how you can sing the Alphabet and Itsy Bitsy Spider (in Hindi!), name all the animals in every book, demand to swing for hours, chat with strangers in the elevator, to how you cuddle up with your best friend baby Bo, you amaze us in every way. Daddy loves dancing to Chamak Challo with you and Mommy loves having you as a helper in the kitchen! We hope you continue to enjoy dancing & singing, learning, playing and spending time with your Mommy & Daddy.
 
You are the light of our lives!
 
 We wish you a very happy 2nd birthday!!

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Recipe: Aloo Parantha

Aloo parantha (potato-stuffed-warm bread) is one of the most popular North Indian comfort foods I can think of. It is filling and delicious, and tastes perfect with a bowl of homemade yogurt or spicy mint chutney. I made these on a cold Monday morning to kick off the week on a good start.... YUM.


This is such a good video tutorial of how to make a great parantha, check it out. Enjoyyy.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Book Review: The Good House by Ann Leary


Hildy Good is a sixty year old, divorced alcoholic who is a successful realtor and a twistedly honest narrator. She is the descendant of Sarah Good, a woman hung as a witch in the Salem witch trials. She carries this and much other baggage with her as she tells this sharp, funny and stiking story. Ann Leary lets you get inside Good's head as she struggles with her addiction, succeeds at her business, and tries to find a place in her family. Her voice is sometimes honest, but always in denial - especially about her alcoholism. Sometimes I felt for her, wondering - is it so bad if she has a glass of wine in her own home? Other times her obvious addiction is terrifying. Through her snarky, witty language, we are able to get a great view of the New England town in which she resides, its real estate landscape, and specifically, of a new resident named Rebecca McAllister.

Rebecca is a seemingly beautiful, rich but bored wife and mother of two adopted children. She moves into one of the largest estates in the neighborhood and begins a close friendship with Hildy. We quickly see that Rebecca is riddled with problems of her own, and the contrast of these two women makes for a fresh and exciting story. Hildy admits in her intelligent, charming way that she was born "three drinks short of comfortable" - and it is this precise admission that pulls the reader in, and we're rooting for her the whole way. This is a real page turner, and it's the best kind of novel -- where nothing major happens, but the author brings light to every day realities and struggles that are relatable, common... and too often kept secret.

I loved the Good House by Ann Leary, and would highly recommend it!

Monday, March 4, 2013

Weekend Roundup


1. Took little J to the Central Park Zoo where she loves to pet & feed the baby animals, and since it was cold, I decided to check out the 4D Dora movie. It's only 15 minutes long, and surprisingly, little J sat perfectly still all the way through it with the 4D glasses on! She was in awe, and so was I. Lots of bubbles pop out, the graphics are amazing, and we even got wet at one point! So so cool. She wanted MORE DORA when it was done!

2. Pumpkin Waffles on Saturday morning, with fresh berries & homemade whipped cream. Perfect way to kick off the weekend.

3. Had a fabulous dinner with big group of friends on Friday night at Mole on Jane street... it was so delicious and such a festive environment! I'd definitely recommend it.

4. We went to our favorite brunch spot, Alice's Tea Cup (Chapter 2), for yummy scones benedict and the delicious teas. They have an incredible assortment, served in adorable teapots & cups.

Hope you all had a great weekend as well!

Friday, March 1, 2013

Recipe: Chinese Stir Fry & Noodles

Hubby loves to order in Chinese food once in a while, but I hate how greasy it is, and we haven't found a place that uses great fresh vegetables. So I experimented with making "authentic" tasting chinese food at home... not an easy task. I finally found this recipe, and altered it by using tofu instead of meat, subtracting the sugar and adding jalapenos for heat. I used baby corn, bok choy, broccoli, bell peppers, carrots, mushrooms, snowpeas, and water chestnuts. And instead of rice, I served it with plain chinese noodles tossed in my homemade chili oil and a dash of siracha sauce.




This dish was so light, fresh and really hit the spot. YUM.