Tate's milestones

8 months old yesterday…

Tate is 8 months old and one day today… Crazy huh?

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This little boy is a bundle of energy, when he is awake he is always on the move, he loves to touch everything and pinches and scratches my chest all the time as he discovers what I feel like. He doesn’t really put all things in his mouth, including food, he is not a big fan of solid foods and just drops any finger foods straight to floor! He is not crawling but can definitely get himself around the floor, he can go from laying to sitting, but he is not confident in doing it at the moment! He can sit unaided but I still put something behind him as if he wants something he will just roll backwards to get it!

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Tate is still such a happy baby, even with the three teeth that have popped up in this past month, he is the latest of all my children to get teeth though! He has his two front teeth at the bottom and his left front top one, the right one is sitting in the gum, I wish it would just break through as he has not been sleeping at all well, waking every hour and then I end up nursing him then falling asleep with him tucked beside me in my bed!

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At his latest check up on Monday he weighed 18lbs 14ozs dressed, the same weight Florrie was at a year old… He is definitely my chunky monkey, but I love it! The Gap is definitely the place to shop for chunky baby boys, the sizes are good and the styles are the trendiest… I’m definitely loving dressing this little boy!

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In the last month Tate had his first Halloween, we didn’t go trick or treating this year, but we did attend the Library’s Annual Halloween parade, so cute… Florrie and Tate had a pumpkin theme this year… Pumpkin fairy and Pumpkin Pixie costumes were handmade lovingly by Mommy and Nanny, and even if I do say it myself they looked so gorgeous!

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Days in our lives…

I think I am never letting my mum go home, it’s so lovely to go out then come home to dinner cooking… Yesterday was Veterans Day over here and of course my brothers birthday, anyway Paul had the day off from work, he very kindly looked after our babies who both have colds at the moment, so I could visit my friend, who is in hospital today having surgery on her broken ankle… Good luck Jill! After that I came home and Paul and I took Tate out, Florrie wanted to stay with her Nanny, which was fabulous, because Nanny stayed home and it meant that we walked through the door at 5pm to the smell of dinner slowly cooking away… Yummy!

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Time is flying by way too fast, it’s crazy, Halloween came and went in a flash, we are hurtling towards Thanksgiving at an alarming rate, which means my Mum will be heading home soon after, then of course it will be time for Santa to visit all of us that have been good this year… Florrie does not understand that all her wants and needs have to be put on Santa’s list, she wants it all NOW, and if she doesn’t get it she just cries and cries… Really this has got me thinking, that things never really change, as my children get older they have their wants and needs and if they don’t get them they just moan, they are quieter than Florrie at 3 years old, but they still demand and moan, I think this really only changes as they move into their mid twenties and really start to grow up… So again that got me thinking, are younger children that much harder than dealing with teens and twenty year olds, I’m really not sure, the problems are just more complex and you don’t have quite so much control in dealing with the problem!

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We had a wonderful afternoon in Westfield last Friday, a girlie shopping trip and Tate… Mabel has decided she wants to be a leader in fashion not a follower, truly her mothers daughter, she loves the boho look and has developed into a gorgeous fashionista with her own style, well actually it’s her mothers style , I knew it would happen one day… She is a mini me when it comes to choosing clothes these days! We headed into Westfield after my doctors appointment and straight into Urban Outfitters, she was like a kid in a candy store, piling things to try on everywhere… On top of the stroller, underneath it and on her personal coat hanger… Me!

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We picked up the same things to try on several times and unbelievably we can share some things these days, even though she is so thin and it always looks so much better on her, I suppose that’s what being Mabel’s Mum is all about these days… Accepting she looks so much better than me in my clothes 🙂

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Anyway after a very successful shopping trip in UO, we sat in Starbucks, then had lunch… Visited Baby Gap, my favorite shop for Tate’s clothes and then bought sleepover goodies for Mabel’s friends in Trader Joes and much needed wine for my Mum and me too, this time we tried organic wine, which was yummy btw!

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All in all Friday turned into a perfect teacher convention day off, ending in a sleepover for Mabel with three of her friends… Now on that subject I will just say this was not so perfect… Three teenage girls at 2am doing handstands in my living room is not so much fun… Enough said!

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Sleepover chocolate chip Frappes for breakfast…

For 4 sleepover teenager girls… Half fill your blender with ice, add 2 cups of coconut milk, 3-4 tablespoons of chocolate sauce, we used Trader Joes True Moo and a cup of semi sweet chocolate chips… Blend until mixed together, pour into glasses and top with whipped cream, chocolate sauce and a few chocolate chips… Serve with a smile and think to yourself they will be sleeping in their own homes tonight… BLISS!

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Dinner for eight…

I’m all about comfort food to the max, and with a lot of fussy eaters in my house I’ve had to be devious over the years… I think I missed my opportunity to write a cook book on incorporating all those lovely veggies into my children’s meals without them even noticing, it seems it has become the trend for the celebrities that are new mothers to claim they invented the idea of chopping and pureeing veggies into our children’s diet… Believe me I learnt this trick long before that first cookbook hit the shelves!

Dinner for eight people on a budget is an art, comfort food makes this art easier, you can stretch almost anything once it’s incorporated into a delicious casserole, stew or soup, you can add nutrition from lots of ingredients and lots of flavor from herbs and spices and then incorporate into the dish, some lentils, maybe barley or just something that stretches that dish to go a bit further.

Tonight I have the dilemma of cooking for the majority but then making a couple of dishes for two very fussy eaters… So my plan of action is focaccia bread dough from the pioneer woman, from this I can make two pizzas for my extremely fussy eaters, but then also make the focaccia bread to go with a warm barley, rice soup, all of this will be served with a green arugula salad… Voila, dinner to the max, on a budget, even if you have gluten allergies, and dairy allergies, this can be incorporated too at not a lot of extra cost!

Pumpkin rice and barley soup, topped with crispy Cajun ground beef

1 can of pumpkin purée
4 cups of broth (choose a broth of your choice, I’m using a veggie one)
2 cups of shredded or finely chopped carrots
2 cups of chopped green beans
4 stalks of finely chopped celery
1 sweet potato, scrubbed, and chopped into small cubes
1 cup of frozen spinach
Any other vegetables you would like to add, I’m restricted with my breastfeeding diet
1 tablespoon of ground flaxseed
1 tablespoon of wheat germ
1 tablespoon of chia seeds
1 cup of barley
1 cup of brown rice
2 teaspoons of thyme
2 teaspoons of oregano
Salt and pepper to taste

1 packet of ground turkey
2 tablespoons of Cajun seasoning
Olive/coconut oil for browning

Add oil to pot, I’m using my ninja three in one cooker, add ground turkey and cook until cooked and crispy brown… Keep warm! Remove from pot then add about a tablespoon more oil, add in vegetables of choice, except frozen spinach, cook for about 10 minutes until slightly softened, then add thyme, oregano, salt, pepper, flax seed, whet germ and chia seeds, stir to mix before adding pumpkin and broth, followed by barley and brown rice, bring to the boil, reduce heat, cover and let simmer for 20 minutes, until rice is cooked, toss in spinach let it warm through, before serving in bowls topped with crispy ground turkey!
Throw together a simple arugula green salad and slice warm focaccia bread

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Trying to be healthy…

I have managed to eat a healthy breakfast and then I started my yoga for beginners DVD… I’m either very unfit or completely unflexible, probably both, but I managed 10 minutes of exercising this morning… Not a bad start to my healthy regime… Ha, ha! Now I’m sitting with a sleeping baby on my lap typing this blog and thinking about my healthy vegan veggie soup I’m making for lunch!

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I’m becoming a huge fan of chia seeds, my plan last night was to make a chia seed pudding unfortunately for some reason my chia seeds did not gel, so I did not want to waste all this coconut milk goodness… What to make instead…
1/2 cup of gluten free oats from Trader Joes
1/2 cup of my coconut, chia seed mix (1/2 cup unsweetened coconut milk, 3 tablespoons of chia seeds, 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla essence and 1 teaspoon of blue agave)
1 rounded teaspoon of unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup of coconut water
3 strawberries quartered
A small handful of semi sweet chocolate chips (dairy free)

Mix together the first four ingredients in a microwave bowl, this could be cooked in a saucepan on the stove top too… once mixed together, microwave on high for 5 minutes, spoon into two glasses and top with strawberries, chocolate chips and a drizzle of the blue agave… Sit back and indulge in chocolate for breakfast!

Breastfeeding Tate has meant I have had to avoid lots of foods as he has a very delicate digestive system at the moment… Tomatoes is one of those foods, trying to cook Fall comfort foods is a challenge without a tomato base, but I have found the solution… Pure pumpkin, delicious, healthy and fantastic for your digestive system, totally anti-inflammatory and the best thing is I’ve managed to disguise it in everything I’ve cooked so far as it doesn’t have a strong taste when added to other ingredients…A house full of fussy eaters!

Other ingredients I am addicted to for nutrition and to help fill a meal out to feed a house of hungry children on a budget are barley, quinoa, oats… I also love ground flax seeds added to everything!