Welcome Baby Aster

There’s a new baby in da house! Like almost nine months ago but who is counting haha?Aster is three months old away from turning ONE which I can’t believe because it felt like just yesterday we brought her home. Life with two has a bit hectic which is why I’m posting her birth story when she’s nine months old. Lyra is just LOVING being a big sister and actually can’t stop kissing, hugging, and all around man-handling her.

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This photo was taken in the first couple weeks when Aster was born.

Aster’s birth story is very different than Lyra’s, mostly because we scheduled an induction so we knew exactly when she would arrive. Well sort of because I had to wait quite a while to be called to the hospital. And when I was called in, I didn’t actually get induced until well after midnight. But after the pitocin started, contractions came two hours later and shortly after, Aster was born!

I wish I could tell you about the newborn days but they feel so far behind us now haha. Aster is cruising around on furniture, eating solids like a pro, clapping and waving and just growing up so fast. The second time around is certainly a whirlwind!

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Christmas in San Francisco

I’m terrible at blogging, obviously. I can’t say I’m extremely busy because I still manage to  find time to watch terrible reality TV shows like Ben & Lauren: Happily Ever After, which is so scripted but I will still watch because I am addicted to The Bachelor franchise. Anyways, I could go on but let’s get to what’s new – lots!

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Surf, Jam, Live in a Van: Our Trip to Laguna Beach

We road tripped it to Laguna Beach this past weekend. It was a loooong ride. It took about NINE hours with all our stops. It’s not easy entertaining a baby that dislikes being in the car seat. Mental note: never do this again.

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We stayed at the Laguna Beach House which I highly recommend! The location can’t be beat – right next to Heisler State Park and just a short walk to the downtown. The staff was very friendly too! They had a pack n play set up in our room before we arrived.

This vacation was definitely very different than our past vacations. We were up at 6am each day (thanks Lyra!) and settled in the for night at 7pm. Though we were still able to do a lot. It was HILARIOUS watching Lyra touch sand for the first time. She absolutely HATED it. We’ve never seen her grip us more tightly than she did when we were trying to place her feet down in the sand. That girl’s grip is iron!

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Chris put her feet in the ocean which she also hated haha. Poor baby. I think she must have felt like we were torturing her.

Laguna Beach was very baby friendly. We saw babies everywhere! We can’t wait to come back with Lyra when she’s older. And able to be in car…

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Bring it on 2016!

Chris and I actually stayed up past midnight last night – woo! Even though 2015 had some road bumps, it brought us many happy memories. I am so grateful for having Chris in my life who is super supportive. I feel like I could tell him I’m going to clown school and he would say sounds great! (No, clown school is not in the works for 2016.) And I am grateful for Miss Lyra who has been the best teacher of patience for both of us. She is a tough teacher 😉 But at the end of the day, she is making us stronger. We already have some fun plans in store for 2016 – bring it on!

 

Home for the Holidays

Yup, I totally forgot what the cold was like. Landing in NY last Wednesday with a long tee, tights and flats certainly is not a winter appropriate outfit, especially with an inch of snow on the ground. Luckily its been warm and humid the past couple of days (67 degrees F yesterday!!).

Things I learned schlepping a wedding dress on an airplane across the country:
  • There is no good place to hang your wedding dress while going to the bathroom. 
  • Some people will get excited when they see you are carrying a wedding dress but mostly everyone is annoyed that you are taking up all the overhead compartment space.
  • Your wedding dress cannot serve as a blanket and must be stowed…
  • It also cannot be placed on the dozen of empty seats available…
  • My dress fits in the overheard compartment if folded over twice.
I’m happy to report the dress made it in one piece albeit, in need of a good press and steaming! 

Yesterday the whole fam (+Billy) went on a walk along the Hudson river during dusk. It was still pretty even though the snow had melted.

Its been so nice to be home. On Friday, my brother and I went into the city. I went to yoga with Rosie and did a little Christmas shopping at Chelsea Market – such great finds. I wanted everything. 
I’m going to take a break from blogging to enjoy being home. Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas!  

Cinnamon Chocolate Chip Cream Scones

For the past two weeks I’ve been in NY spending time with family and friends (hence the lack of posting). NY is surprisingly warm right now. I totally packed for the wrong weather – all the knit sweaters, tall boots, and scarves I brought home have just sat in my suitcase. I’m really enjoying this taste of fall though. I know some people don’t care about the seasons but it really is beautiful when the leaves change colors. I mean, look at that!

My family threw me a bridal shower the first weekend I was home. Chris’ Mom and sisters came too. It was really fun! We had no idea what we were doing (it was only my second bridal shower, and my family’s first) – but it was still really fun and just maybe 5% awkward. You have to admit, its always a little weird opening gifts in front of people – especially when its gifts that you’ve asked for!

Since I have a little down time before heading to Philadelphia for one of my sweetest, and dearest friend’s wedding, I decided to do some baking with the L.A. Burdick (best hot chocolate in Boston!) chocolate chips I got from my shower.

Don’t these scones look scrumptious? The best part is that they literally take minutes to put together.

Here are some of the few photos I have from the bridal shower:

We ended the bridal shower with a trip to the Rockland Bakery. I just had to show all my out-of-town friends where I get my bagels. I’m seriously considering ending the wedding there too…

I am taking advantage of being home and have been crafting like a mad woman. I have been to Michael’s and AC Moore more times than I can count. Its been a sewing-machine-X-acto-knife-modge-podge whirlwind. But things are getting done for our wedding in January! I’m super excited and it’s not that far away (eep!).

I am loving being home with Kara too. She’s the coolest. Here are some pics of her on our walk today:

Kara stopping to smell…the dead flowers?

This picture of Kara makes me giggle. It looks like she’s coming home from a hard day of work with her head down like that.

I could go on and on about Kara. Anyways back to the scones!

These scones are really versatile – you can add in whatever mix-ins you have on hand. And I like making them small as a good snacking size. Because they are so quick and easy to put together, you don’t need to plan ahead – bonus!

Cinnamon Chocolate Chip Cream Scones
Recipe adapted from Food Librarian

Get

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons organic sugar
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, chilled
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips (I used Burdick’s 68% chocolate chips)
  • 1 cup heavy cream

Bake
*Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
*Whisk together all the dry ingredients in a large bowl.
*Add in butter and using your hands, cut the butter into small pea-sized pieces.
*Stir in the chocolate chips.
*With a spatula or wooden spoon, stir in heavy cream. Pat the dough into a flat disk on a well-floured surface. The dough will be a little sticky.
*Form dough into a square about 3/4 inch thick and cut into 16 or 25 scones. Or you can form the dough into a disk and cut into wedges.
*With a pastry brush, brush each scone with some heavy cream and sprinkle with coarse sanding sugar.
*Bake scones for about 12-15 minutes, or until tops are golden brown.

Enjoy!

Home Is…

…where you can dance around without any pants on. I guess you could do this at a gay club in the West Village, or even on a Tuesday night in the Castro now that I think about it (and you don’t even need to be dancing). Gah.

Well home will always be in NY, where my crazy family is.

Me and my cousins and sister having some fun.

I find myself homesick sometimes. Living in SF is like living in a bubble. The bubble is really awesome, don’t get me wrong. I couldn’t ask for anything more. I mean there are farmers market everyday, nearby mountains for hiking or skiing, and homemade-organic everything. But it seems when I come back to NY,  I realize how much I miss it.
Plus I miss Kara! This is my idea of fun or torture depending on how you look at it:

#thingsonacorgi

My parents moved this past spring to a new house in the same town about 3 miles away from where we grew up. The new house is really nice (even bigger) but it’s not the same. My parents still own the other house and are renting it out to another family. We went there yesterday to fix the water heater. Seeing my old house was weird. I was standing outside a “home” that wasn’t there anymore. I had mixed feelings about moving. But should I even care? I haven’t lived at home in ages. I live in SF now. My parents could have moved to Del Boca Vista if they wanted. Would it really matter?

Family BBQ at the new house with new babies! (picture collage from my cousin)

I guess ultimately it doesn’t. (But don’t move to Florida, seriously.) Home for me is being with my family wherever they are, and I’m excited that soon Chris will officially be a part of my family. (There’s still time to back away!) We had a BBQ on Saturday and it was the same drill – lots of meat, egg rolls, Rockland Bakery goodies, and screaming babies. We ended the night going to Target to buy stuff we didn’t need. It was a good time.

And home is still a no-pants zone, that should just be a given.