I highly enjoyed the royal wedding today. There was something rather awesome about seeing a woman like Kate, ahem, Catherine Middleton in the spotlight. I love that she played field hockey, and waited until she was almost 30 to marry, and chose to wear her hair down on her wedding day. (I LOVE her hair by the way – she has totally reignited my hope for my own hair. Our hair is quite similar although I suspect that unlike mine, her hair may actually get brushed on a regular basis.)
She’s intelligent and demure and classy and I really hope that there are little girls out there who watched the festivities and saw how beautiful and perfect it all was and started to think to themselves that maybe the Disney-mess-of-the-month they currently idolize may not be the kind of woman they want to grow up to be after all. Kate Middleton showed the world that you don’t have to be rich, or trampy, or brash to have the fairytale and there are better options and better choices and better ways to be a woman. They’re a stunning couple and seem very much in love and I’m so glad I got up at 4 a.m. to watch and be enchanted with the rest of the world.
(I woke up at 4 a.m. to watch the arrivals and the ceremony. Matteo joined me at 6:30.)
Bye bye and back to his blueberries.
Brunch, prosciutto and goat cheese are three of my favorite things in life and combining them all into one delicious meal of deliciousness is this recipe – a prosciutto and goat cheese strata. (In our house it’s also known as the Erik Estrata.) I made it for Easter brunch this year and the fluffy bread chunks were the perfect consistency for Matteo, who gobbled up almost all of the leftovers. (The neighborhood ducks will soon be gobbling up that baggie full of bread crusts.)
Prosciutto and Goat Cheese Strata
from Madison Magazine
18 slices firm white bread (such as English muffin or sourdough), crusts removed
6 ounces prosciutto, thinly sliced
8 ounces goat cheese, crumbled
4 ounces provolone, thinly sliced
1/4 cup chopped green onions
6 tablespoons thinly sliced fresh basil
5 large eggs
2 1/2 cups whole milk
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons butter, melted
pepper to taste
- Line bottom of 13x9x2-inch glass baking dish completely with 1 layer of bread, cutting some slices to fit. Arrange half of prosciutto evenly over bread. Sprinkle half of goat cheese and layer half of provolone over prosciutto. Sprinkle with half of green onions and half of basil. Top with second layer of bread. Layer remaining prosciutto, goat cheese, provolone, green onions and basil atop bread. Cut remaining bread into 1/4-inch cubes. Sprinkle over top.
- Whisk eggs, milk, mustard, and salt in bowl. Season with pepper. Pour egg mixture over strata; press down on bread with spatula. Drizzle melted butter over strata. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Uncover strata and let stand at room temperature 30 minutes. Bake until center is set, about 1 hour. Remove from oven. Preheat broiler. Place strata under broiler until top is golden, about 30 seconds. Cut into large squares and serve.
Saturday night I went out with Carrie to see our friend Nick’s band. This was kind of a big deal because I was able to reconnect with my old friend Mr. Vodka Tonic and stay out until midnight for the first time in many months. For a woman who has been spending her evenings watching BBC America programs about the royal wedding, the whole evening was highly enjoyable.
While I love Matteo like crazy, and all the warm fuzzies I get from being a mom and doing things with our little family are totally awesome, there are other things I enjoy that have had to take a backseat while we sort out our new routine. It’s completely normal for priorities to shift as one works on adjusting to new life circumstances, but I’m now to the point where I know we’ve got a good thing going and I’m ready for a little more time for me.
Matt and I talked about this over the weekend and have decided to better prioritize socializing without Matteo. (We’re pretty good about socializing with him, which won’t change, but it ultimately makes for a much earlier curfew.) Each month we both get one night out ourselves with our own friends, as well as one night out together where we get a babysitter. I also now will have a couple of hours each Sunday, without a baby underfoot (that’s the key here), to spend in the kitchen cooking or baking something new. I have stacks of food magazines from the last year that are barely touched and as much as we love the convenience of Trader Joe’s, I’ve missed the pleasure of discovering and making new things.
For me, the hardest thing about being a working mom has been the guilt. I feel guilty for not being with him during the week so I want to spend every waking minute with him on the weekends. This weekend showed me how much I’ve missed going out at night and how easy it is to do, especially when I leave after he’s gone to bed. Win win.
We celebrated Easter on Saturday with Matt’s family so yesterday was spent outside enjoying the last day of our spring break. We took a walk to our new favorite coffee shop for iced coffees and paninis and a baby croissant for Matteo, and then strolled down the street to a new local bakery for a milkshake.
It’s been wonderful being home with Matteo for a week. I was home a few days with him, Matt was home a few days with him, we all were home together for a few days, and at the end of it all I felt like we were much better re-connected as a family.
Matteo is much more demonstrative now with his affection for us. He loves hugs and will even pause for a moment now and then to rest his head on our chests. But then he’s off again creeping, crawling, grabbing…he never stops. Matt jokes that these brief pauses in action, when he rests for just a few seconds, are the equivalent to a 30-minute cat nap for a normal person. It’s just enough time to recharge his battery before setting off again.
I saw this in the inaugural issue of Lucky Kids magazine and am in all kinds of love with this playroom. That little IKEA slide is just fantastic – here’s a better look:
Even before I saw this I had been considering getting it for Matteo for his birthday since his favorite thing to do at school is go down the slide on the indoor climbing gym. (He either goes down on his belly like a seal, or sitting up facing backwards.) But now after seeing its size relative to other things, I think I’ll hold off until he’s a little bigger and better able to climb up on top of it.
Notice anything about those curtains?! They are the same design as this wallpaper, but makelite doesn’t sell curtains and the pattern is ever-so-slightly different. How did they make them? And of course they’re the only feature in the room that doesn’t have a source next to it. Grrr.
The only thing I’m a little leery of in this room is the swing. The idea of an indoor swing is great – in theory – but seriously, don’t kids swing into the walls and bash things around? I can see it working in a loft but in this room…not so much.
Matteo and I have been quite the duo since Matt has been away. I had to take him to the doctor for an ear infection yesterday morning so I took the rest of the day off and we went out to lunch, just the two of us for the first time, to Ella’s Deli for grilled cheeses followed by a nice long afternoon nap. It was delightful.
Today, however, I think I pushed him a little too far with the whole ‘mom time’ stuff. Everything started off okay. We went out to brunch with Carrie and Stefanie and then back home for a nap and some playtime. But then I took him to the mall to meet the Easter Bunny and then we went to look at wedding dresses for Carrie’s upcoming wedding and…well, you can see for yourself.
Full of blueberry muffin and fruit smoothie – a good way to start the day
Post-nap phone snatch and bear wrestle
What the hell? Where am I? What ARE you?
TAKE ME HOME. NOW.