Monday, February 28, 2011

crib love.

or as my cousin said:
'your crib has a crib?'

i spent my sunday scrubbing the hard wood.
j & my brother put together the crib & dresser.

i'm in love.
blue walls.
orange closet.
green crib.

the colors of love.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

what's in a name.

we're naming our child after a character from a movie.
& this movie series has been playing the past two nights.
& we're addicted.
we can't wait for our santino.
the boy we'll call sonny.
this is as close as we can get.
a movie.
we're not really naming our baby after a movie character.
he'll be sonny after my grandfather.
the 82 year old man who still calls me doll baby.
who will tell you exactly what he's thinking.
who slipped me $20 each time i saw him while in college.
when i had a migrane while sleeping over his house as a kid..
he stayed up with me,
held my hair back while i got sick.
& told me he use to get migranes but he out grew them and i would too.
& i did.

he also sat with me while i cried when my parents were divorcing.
his parents had divorced too.
he told me it would be okay eventually
& it was.

he told me how he fought with his sister
& missed her wedding.
but they ended up being close again
& my brother
& i would be okay.
& we are.

santino will not be sonny officially.
we're saving that for cousin k or a..
whoever has a baby boy first.

but unofficially our boy will be sonny.
& he'll have big shoes to fill.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

dinner for under $12

i'm thrilled each month when i receive my everyday food.
yesterday i ran out for the ingredients in this meal,
if you already have olive oil, salt & pepper..
this should cost you less than $12.
& we had a ton of leftovers.

shells, cauliflower, chickpeas & ricotta

1. roast at 450degrees a head of cauliflower cut into florets with a 19oz can of cento chickpeas (rinsed/drained) with olive oil and salt & pepper for 25 minutes
2. roast two cups of 1inch cubes of crusty bread for 10minutes
3. cook a box of whole grain barilla shells
4. mix cooked shells, cauliflower mix & 3tablespoons fresh chopped parsley & 2tablespoons olive oil
5. top with 1/2cup ricotta & toasted bread cubes

yummy, healthy & vegetarian!

i recommend cento chickpeas (they're the best!) & barilla's whole grain pasta (least whole grain tasting)

my journey.

it took a lot of vocalization from my friends to get me to post a baby bump picture.
it has taken 31weeks for me to appreciate my journey.

i spent so long comparing myself to others,
& wondering what was normal.

before i realized this is normal for me.

the beginning was tough.
i gained weight quickly.
i was sick every morning.
i thought this is it...
one and done.

then a miracle happened around 17-18weeks.
i felt like me.
i went back to the gym.
got back on my normal diet.
started feeling in control.

it didn't help that i started a new job,
& a week later there were two pink lines.

thank god this job has been amazing.
supportive bosses & co-workers are underrated.
& it has been the best distraction.

now i feel in the zone.
between my day-job & helen's hassack,
i'm always on the move.
sometimes i'm going for hours
& then i feel that kick..
and suddenly remember i'm pregnant.

it's important,
do not get me wrong.
i cannot wait to be a mom.

& i haven't been this happy..
not just happy,
but honestly content,
but i'm also me..
& i don't plan on losing that anytime soon.

*please ignore the mess of our guest room
which is now also our home office in order to make room for baby.

Friday, February 18, 2011

that's smooth.

in an effort to increase my vitamin intake
& curve my sweet tooth
i decided to try smoothies.

this one was a hit from
everyday food magazine

j didn't even know there was spinach in the smoothie.

peach, berry & spinach smoothie
1 cup frozen peaches
1/2 cup frozen blackberries
1 cup spinach (i used bagged baby spinach)
1 & 1/2 cup white grape juice
(if you use fresh fruit add 1/2 cup ice)

blend thoroughly and enjoy!

makes two servings of:
200% of your daily vitamin C
160 calories
0 fat
2g protein
41g carbs
4g fiber


head to Helen's Hassack
click on the Books section
browse & enjoy.

select your favorites.
enter the coupon code:
& receive 40% off all books from the shop!
many different topics for your interest:

please convo or e-mail { } with questions!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

two chefs one kitchen

most people don't know i scored big when i married j.
before he joined the family construction business..
he studied at the art institute of philadelphia for culinary arts.

not only is he amazingly handsome..
he can cook!

however it sometimes leads to issues when i try and make a meal.
i'm a follow the recipe perfectly kind of girl.
he's a go with it kind of guy.

tonight we compromised,
i picked the recipe,
purchased the ingredients..
and he cooked adding a little j flavor.

and it was a SUCCESS!
a nice light meal,
with great taste!

check out the recipe here.
i agree with all of this bloggers suggestions
& will be adding pineapple next time!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

more clearance.

i added a new item to clearance.
expires FEBRUARY 17 !!!
light brown fur headband with birdcage veil attached - purchase NOW here

more hats & love available at Helen's Hassack

the finished product.

sunday was family dinner at my moms.
it's really nice to have everyone together.
i hope we always can do this.

i brought dessert.
my first from scratch cake.
i followed this recipe from annie's eats.
5sticks of butter & love.

the results:

icing.. fudge heaven.
a thick heavy icing that formed well on the heart shaped cake.
definitely would use this icing again!

cake.. wedding cake.
that was the typical description.
not a light fluffy cake,
but a heavy cake that tastes like a typical wedding cake.

definitely a nice start to my cake making days :)

Sunday, February 13, 2011


only available online until FEBRUARY 17 !!
black hat
brown hat.
get them before they hit the store.
& check out all of the other SALE items at Helen's Hassack

the love of baking.

tonight we will actually taste test the cake.
but the journey was amazing.

it felt great to challenge myself with something new.
this is the first time i've baked a complete cake from scratch.
the first time i melted chocolate on the stove (seriously..)

a few hours alone in the kitchen
with my new favorite show (american pickers) on in the background
= the perfect saturday.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

from scratch.

i had never heard of softasilk
before this advertisement with an angel food cake recipe.

today i'm baking my first cake from scratch.
& the recipe calls for cake flour.

usually i skip over any recipe with cake flour.
i've never bought it before yesterday.
mom told me she usually uses all purpose flour instead.

any thoughts?
which is better, is it necessary?

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

something red - jennifer gilmore - book review

something red

jennifer gilmore

i'm a big fan of the historical fiction.
a fake story with some real history.

a fulfilling novel about real issues.
family issues.
family secrets.

a little mystery.
mixed with family drama.

told from each family member's view.
keeps you analyzing and not judging.

good for:
those who love a little family discord.
anyone with an interest in american communism in the 60s & 70s.
if you have a russian background.
those who like a little mix of history & drama.
overall rating:
3 out of 5 holly leaves?
now reading:
the girl who kicked the hornet's nest
can - not - wait - for - the -movies.
love this series!

Monday, February 7, 2011


i've come to realize i'm not the happiest pregnant girl.
as i get larger
my fuse gets shorter.
i give myself daily reminders to be happy.

being happy isn't easy.
we have to be cognizant.
to be loveable we have to be persistent.

our feelings don't just happen.
they come from our interpretations.

interpret your world different.
think about what made you happy today.
and tell someone.

pretty valentine's earrings here.

Friday, February 4, 2011

where is spring?

i have never been this antsy for spring.
i love snow.
snow days.
hot chocolate
& hot chili.

this year is different.
we get our new bundle in april.

& the spring brings baseball..

mom & i already have our sleepover planned..
i can-not-wait to see her dress & head piece!

but also..

what are you excited for this spring?

anyone planning an alice in wonderland tea party?
you'll need hats!
we've got hats ! !

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

my favorite dinner.

i've been hitting the gym hard the past few days.
after a long weekend with family -
i came home with some good advice from my aunts.

the best came from aunt j..
her best birth
(out of three - all without meds!)
was the one where she was most fit!

when j gets dinner for himself before i'm home i make my favorite

the holly special.

cook 1 cup (uncooked) whole wheat pasta.
steam broccoli florets & baby carrots.
heat one can of hunt's diced tomatoes with basil & olive oil.
(i also threw in some left over chicken from last night's dinner).
mix altogether & cover with parmesean cheese!

now i get to splurge on dessert. yum!