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February 11, 2015

Jackson is THREE!

THREE!

Three years ago today we had no idea we'd be spending the next five nights in the hospital with my baby who wasn't due for another 16 days. Looking back his birth was like a comedy of errors, everything I didn't want to happen, did. My plan for an unmedicated, natural birth turned into an emergency C-section; my adamant refusal to have my son taken from my room and put in the nursery was thwarted by jaundice and bilirubin numbers that just wouldn't come up, resulting in days under lights in the nursery. My stance on breastmilk exclusively became ironic when he refused every bottle known to man and we loaded my breastmilk into feeding syringes to keep his weight up.

It was all such a big deal then, and now he's just a big kid who eats spaghetti with his hands and sleeps in a full size bed. He has "best friends" and holds full conversations. He loves school but remains a full-blown mama's boy. He has a sense of humor and is thoughtful.

I love you, Jackson. You're my best.


Jackson's Birthday Cupcakes

Jackson is THREE! I keep writing it with all capital letters because THREE feels more accurate in terms of personifying the age. It's big and loud! I made cupcakes for Jackson's class today, which is back in session after many snow days at home. The entire school is a nut free facility, and he has one classmate with a gluten allergy and the other with a dairy allergy. I would have made paleo cupcakes anyway, but the dairy allergy threw a wrench in the frosting I wanted to use. I ended up making one batch of chocolate cupcakes (gluten free, nut free, not dairy free) and one batch of vanilla cupcakes (gluten free, nut free, dairy free) and then frosted them all with easy two-ingredient buttercream except for one vanilla cupcake, which I frosted with a single serving of dairy free frosting made from coconut oil, maple syrup, and cocoa powder. These are the recipes I used (I use them just about every year, they're my favorites).

Paleo Chocolate Cupcakes
adapted from My Paleo Life (as Sweet Potato Paleo Brownies)
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips
  • 1 cup canned organic pumpkin
  • 1/4 cup unpasteurized local honey
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp instant coffee granules
  • 1 tbsp vanilla
  • 1 tbsp coconut flour
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt

  1. Melt the chocolate chips and the coconut oil in either a double boiler or in the microwave. I use the microwave at 30 second bursts, stir repeatedly until melted (usually in 1 1/2 minutes)
  2. Add in all of the other ingredients, and mix until very smooth and creamy.
  3. Transfer the batter to 10 cupcake tins lined with cupcake liners
  4. Bake at 325 degrees for 30 minutes.
For best texture and rich flavor chill in the refrigerator before serving.

Paleo Vanilla Cupcakes
from Elana's Pantry (http://elanaspantry.com/paleo-vanilla-cupcakes/)

  • ¼ cup coconut flour
  • ⅛ teaspoon celtic sea salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon baking soda
  • 3 large eggs
  • ¼ cup palm shortening or oil (I used light olive oil)
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  1. Combine coconut flour, salt and baking soda
  2. Add in eggs, shortening, honey and vanilla
  3. Line a cupcake tine cupcake liners and scoop batter into each
  4. Bake at 350° for 20-24 minutes
  5. Cool for 1 hour

Easy Chocolate Buttercreamfrom Cookies and Cups (http://cookiesandcups.com/easy-chocolate-buttercream/)

  • 2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 lb (2 cups) butter
  1. In medium saucepan, melt chocolate chips and butter over medium low heat, whisking frequently.
  2. When melted, cool completely and chill until solid.
  3. Remove from fridge and allow to come up to room temperature.
  4. Put all the chocolate in a mixing bowl and beat on medium for 2 minutes until light in color and fluffy.

Single Serving Coconut Oil Chocolate Frosting

2 Tbsp coconut oil, softened but still solid
1 Tbsp cocoa powder
1 Tbsp maple syrup
couple drops of vanilla

Mix until smooth. Adjust ingredients to taste.

January 26, 2015

Jackson and Daddy Made A Snowman

We're supposed to get another two to three feet of snow starting this evening (and going until Monday morning) so there will surely be more opportunities for snowman making, but over the weekend we got a few inches and Jackson and daddy made a snowman.

I'm trying not to be too bummed out about the weather because, well, this is New England. It's not a surprise or anything. There was no bait and switch. I remind myself that in the spring we walk to the end of the street to play at the baseball field, and two blocks away to the playground. In the summer we walk a quarter of a mile to the beach to lay in the sand and swim in the ocean. We can take the train, three quarters of a mile away, to Fenway. (Also, pro tip: vitamin D supplements.)

Most importantly, this weekend RaRa came by to play cribbage for a few hours and this afternoon Auntie April and Auntie Paige will be stopping by for a little bit. Nana is babysitting in a couple of weeks. The weather really sucks here in the winter, but the company is pretty great.

January 23, 2015

Chapstick

It's possible that Jackson's chapstick obsession is getting a little out of control. This doesn't count the five that I've hidden while he's at school.

January 12, 2015

My Breakfast Date

I adjusted our chiropractor appointments so Jackson and I go at the same time instead of six hours apart on the same days. Now I only have to drive there three times a week instead of six, which makes a lot more sense and also gets it all done before school and doesn't cut into my work time. The only downside is that our appointment is at 7:30 in the morning, which means we have about 45 minutes to kill afterward before getting him to school. It will be great once the weather is nice and we can spend 45 minutes at the playground or the beach. Alas, the weather is not nice. It is so, so not nice.

This morning I took us over to the diner. We sat at the best table in the house, facing the street window, and we watched everyone who came in or went out. We were facing the mural on the brick wall across the street and noted the painted boy walking the painted dog. I had two cups of too-bitter coffee and he had a cinnamon raisin bagel. It was a pretty great way to start the day.