Month: November 2015

Sleep, You Elusive Jerk (and Overnight Oats)

Oh, sleep. I miss you. You haven’t been easy to come by for two years or so, and now you’re even more difficult to find. My nose is constantly clogged, a delightful symptom of pregnancy, and I have never peed more in my life. 
(I know you have good intentions, friends and readers, but please spare your “Just you wait!” and “You think you’re tired now!” comments. Guys, I know. But you can’t store sleep away in a jar for later, so I’d really like to get it while the getting is good. And being pregnant is really tiring because there is a person living inside me stealing all of my nutrients and fluids.)

So. In addition to being super tired, I am super hungry. All. The. Damn. Time. (Nutrient stealer.) I’ve tried many things to stave off hunger and keep me filled up, but I think I just found my favorite thing. I even bought some cute pint Ball jars expressly for this recipe. I make my own fun. 

Overnight Oats for One

  • 3/4C old-fashioned oats (not quick oats!)
  • 1/2C coconut milk (the kind in a carton; or any kind of milk)
  • 1/4C plain yogurt
  • a glug of real maple syrup 
  • a teeny splash of almond or vanilla extract 
  • a pinch of salt
  • a small handful of dried cranberries
  • pinches of cinnamon, ground ginger, allspice, cloves, nutmeg

Mix all ingredients in a pint jar. Leave in fridge overnight. In the morning, add fresh berries, sliced banana, diced apple, etc. 


Snow! (and Zesty Cranberry Sauce)

We got a foot and a half of snow last night. Our Alaskan Malamute is delighted. I’m happy because lots of snow means a day for baking, cooking, and sewing! And reading. And lots of tea. 

One thing I’m cooking up today is cranberry sauce for next Thursday. (Thanksgiving is next Thursday, by the way. What?!) I make cranberry sauce from scratch every year because it is insanely easy and tastes a million times better than canned nonsense. 

Zesty Cranberry Sauce 

  • 1 bag of cranberries (I use Ocean Spray), rinsed and picked over
  • 1C white sugar 
  • 1C water
  • 1t fresh grated ginger (keep your ginger in the freezer and use a microplane)
  • zest of half a lemon

Combine all ingredients in a saucepan. Cover and bring to a boil. You’ll hear the berries start to explode; turn down the heat to low and cook 10 minutes, or until slightly thickened. Uncover, stir, and continue cooking until sauce coats a spoon and sticks there. 

If you like your sauce smooth, strain it. If you like it chunky (yes), leave it alone. Either way, let the sauce cool completely and then transfer it to a zip-top bag or covered container and refrigerate before use. I freeze mine until the day before I need it, then thaw it in the fridge. 

Suggestion from my friend!

“Try replacing the ginger with a couple of diced chipotles. Use the ones packed in adobo, and scrape the excess off with your finger. Spice and smoke go very well with the bitter and sweet.”

Permission to Feel Excited: Granted 

Today I’m 18 weeks pregnant. I actually look pregnant now, something that Mr. Something takes great pleasure in telling me daily. (“You know,” I said last night, “I’m just going to keep looking more and more pregnant from this point on, so really, you can stop saying that.”)

It’s real now. Once I crossed into the second trimester, my risk of bad things happening plummeted, and all of my blood work results are stellar. We have a healthy kid in there. 

But there’s still something that keeps me from celebrating out loud, and that makes me feel like a jerk. Full disclosure: we tried for the better part of a year before we conceived, and that experience gave me some insight into how scary and disheartening and crushingly sad it can be when your body doesn’t do what you really, really want it to do. (Not to mention, what you spent the majority of your adult life trying to prevent, so it’s weird from top to bottom.) Then, when I got exactly what I wanted, I immediately started thinking of worst-case scenarios. Anxiety is a joy-sucker. 

Essentially I spent quite a bit of this year thinking I was broken, and then the first two months after I found out I was pregnant afraid to believe it was real. It’s been a surreal, stressful time. After all that, it’s difficult for me to jump into this headfirst; what if, what if, what if. 

Well, pardon my language, but fuck that nonsense. It’s time for me to get out of my head and into the world. I’m going to get rid of my nervous smile, the one that says, “I hope this works, crapcrapcrap, it’s going to work, right?” I’m all in, baby, and dammit, I’m excited.