April 14, 2014

I'm back?




Hi!

Oh boy!  BOY do I suck!  

I suck at not blogging at all for two months!  I miss it, but mainly I miss writing in general.  Damn, I have got to prioritize better.  Meanwhile, I did just give birth 6 weeks ago and have been busy with that whole hot mess/ yet amazing stuff as well.  It's just been CRAZY over here at the Stonerock residence, but totally wonderful too!

I have goals for this here blog of mine, but I'm just taking it slow, eh hem, very slow for now. I pretty much want this blog to still include recipes and daily life things.  Seems simple enough right?  It can be. And I think the name for this blog still fits well; because with a baby in the mix, it's totally about moderation! << even more amplified now! But for now, most of my mornings consist of being with Claire at whatever time she wakes up, say, 6am, and before I know it, it's noon and I haven't even had my coffee yet or a shower!

Other days I have both.  :)



 Claire Madeline was born 3/3/14 at 1:49am. 7 lbs 6 oz 21 inches long.

I love her more each day!  She's so amazing and such a fun baby!

I try to take photos of her every day because  they were right; I don't know who 'they' actually are, but you know, society. babies really do change every single day.  It's insane. So my life right now is of course busier, but when I do have time, I do try to catch up on my favorite blogs, read aka skim books and magazines, write, and still cook/ bake.

Two nights ago I randomly thought of a quick and simple dessert to make and it's slightly healthier as well! I have zero photos as we scarfed it down as if we haven't eaten a sweet treat in months.  I have always wanted to make from scratch, a flour-less chocolate cake.  And I did just that.

Here's the recipe, friends. Try it. I know you'll love it.


Flour-less chocolate cake 
 Slightly adapted from Allrecipes.com

Ingredients

-3/4 c. granulated sugar
-1/2  c. Unsweetened coco powder
-1 bar of bittersweet baking chocolate {squares}
-1 stick unsalted butter
-3 eggs, beaten
-1 tsp. vanilla extract 
-cooking spray

Method

-Pre-heat oven to 300 degrees
-grease and dust with coco powder, an 8x8 round cake pan
-in a small sauce pan over medium-high heat, melt baking chocolate and butter together, stir until all is melted and smooth.
-once mixture is combined, remove from heat and add the rest of the ingredients; mix well.
-pour into dusted cake pan and bake for 30 minutes.
-cool completely before serving.
* yummy topping ideas: vanilla bean ice cream,  melted peanut butter or caramel sauce, raspberry sauce/ fresh fruit; strawberries, powdered sugar.

This cake was delectable! It has a brownie and fudge-like texture to it but still fun to make and eat!  I actually prefer my brownies fudge-like. So this could be called flour-less brownies. or cake. or both. I mean, it's shaped like a cake. All I know is, it's delicious. I always felt like flour less stuff was difficult to make; it turns out, no so much.


 


Thanks for reading and I hope to be back before another two months comes and goes.






February 5, 2014

His and Her Muffins



I love healthy and smaller snacks throughout the day; like dried cranberries, apple slices, and clementines.  Gary likes healthy snacks too, but to him, one mention of a dried fruit and I get a scrunchy looking face reaction. Or, they should not be added in baked goods of any kind.  I respectfully disagree. :)





I adore chocolate, especially when they are part of a baked treat.  But I like to mix things up sometimes and get creative...as much as possible. I love muffins. They are my weakness next to donuts and specialty pastries.  Ugh, I die. I worked from home today and since mother nature hates us all because this winter is absolutely insane, there was lots of rain this morning, ice, and crazy winds. Apparent power outages were happening all over the place and therefore I think that's one reason my connection went down at around 1pm.  Weirdness.  I was perfectly fine from 730am-1pm.

While I stretched and walked around a bit, the urge to bake something got the best of me.  Or maybe it's because I did my work at the kitchen table today with all necessary kitchen equipment behind me.  





I wanted to bake something a tad healthier. And heck, I'm just happy I baked something delicious today and got to share it with you!  My last recipe I shared was from New Years Eve!  Sad. {not the recipe, that was good}!


I love these muffins because they are super moist , yet not over the top sweet and they have wonderful flavor!  Gary liked his chocolate muffin, as did I. But the cranberry was heaven as well!  I'd say it's a win-win!  You can totally fold in the toppings, but since I had the mashed up banana in there, I just placed them on top of the batter.  Either way, these are YUM.




His & Her Muffins { if your guy is picky }


Ingredients:

Dry:

1 1/4 cup AP flour
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup cocoa powder  
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda

Wet:
 
1/2 cup vanilla almond milk or plain
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 large egg, beaten lightly
1 large ripe banana or 2 medium bananas; mashed
1/2 cup  of your favorite toppings; these had half dried cranberries and half semi-sweet chocolate chips

- Mix all dry ingredients together in a medium bowl.  In another smaller bowl, beat the egg first and whisk the wet ingredients together.  Mash banana first in the wet bowl.  Finally add wet ingredients to dry ingredients. Combine well but don't over mix.

-Drop about a tablespoon of the batter in a lined muffin tin and top with your toppings. 

-Bake at 325 degrees for 20 minutes. Test batter with toothpick to make sure it comes out clean.







Muffins, donuts, or other specialty pastries?

Do you have the option to work from home? If so, what do you get the urge to do if you are slow with work?


January 28, 2014

I can't wait to...


Well, today I am 36 weeks pregnant. Crazy? Yes.  Has time flown by? I finally feel it's flying...it's crunch time mode now! But, 9 months is a long time to cook a baby if you ask me!  I really feel for elephants.  I am as ready as I can ever be and I can't wait to start this next phase of life with Gary.


21 weeks/32 weeks/36 weeks

 It's truly amazing how the female body transforms during pregnancy and how at first we all think, this ain't so bad, or, I can still reach my legs to shave them {well, I thought this}, and now?  hahahahhahha. not so much. It's fun, however, to think back to the different months and weeks and see what you ate, thanks, Instagram! what you did, how you looked, and now I can say that I did not start to show until the 2nd week of October/ 5 months.  I remember people saying "enjoy it and embrace it."  Well, that's difficult when you're the actual pregnant one, feeling bloated and gross and having no bump to show for it.  It was a frustrating time for me.

Once mid-November hit, I was still in my 2nd trimester {and I  for one am a firm believer that the 2nd trimester IS the BEST time during pregnancy}! I finally had a well-shaped "bump" and I could finally embrace it!  I actually felt pregnant.  And I notice pregnant women say that all the time, but it's soooo very true.  That random day comes where, you just feel pregnant.  And we can't explain it.  You just have to go through it.

There's definitely a few things I will miss while being pregnant, but let's first get to the things I cannot wait to do!

I can't wait to...

 bend with ease
 see my waist
 fit into underwear comfortably
 fit into my favorite jeans
 indulge in a hoagie
 wear my rings 
 hit the gym
 east sushi
 drink a margarita. or 3.
 drink wine 
 indulge in ALL the cheeses
 wear heels
 see my lady parts { Let's be honest. It's nice to be able to look there with ease}
 wear a normal bra 
 feel comfortable in my own skin
 head into Spring with my peanut and revel in warm weather!
 BE A MOM!


A few things I personally enjoyed whilst pregnant and will miss?

obscene amounts of cream cheese, bagels, pb&js, lucky charms, Oreos, and pop tarts.  That was all mainly in the first trimester. However, not really having to think twice about that second bowl of sugary cereal is a pleasant feeling.  

Taco Bell and Wendy's were my best friends every once in a while.  I normally would not touch that stuff.  Moderation is key. And oh was it good. :)

Yes, yes. The sympathy card.  Everyone just seems nicer.  However, being really big in the winter months doesn't help with public transportation and people automatically giving up their seat for you. Unless they can see through my 18 layers, you can't tell I'm pregnant.

One thing I definitely will not miss while being pregnant?  Unsolicited advice.  I'm aware my life is about to change.  Thanks for the umpteenth time.

There's a zillion other things, of course, that I haven't mentioned because pregnancy truly is an amazing journey!  Overall, this pregnancy has really been quite great. This third trimester has hit me hard on certain days, though. Like, really hard and I'm just ready to meet my baby!


Anything you're looking forward to in the coming months?
 




 



 

January 22, 2014

Dear January: you suck



What is with this snowy/frigid/icy/annoying/stupid winter?  I get that it's winter, but this is a bad one for us East coasters. I'd also like to add that if we have another child, that one will be planned better to be due in the warmer months...like May or June. :) Being 35 weeks pregnant with a winter this nasty, it's certainly been quite a stressful couple of weeks when it comes to my work.




I'm working from home today and it's quite lovely.  It's very convenient and I now have that option if necessary for the next few weeks leading up to baby girl arriving and post-baby too.  Today it's very frigid with a temps around 10 degrees , give or take, and icy.  Mother nature woke up on the wrong side of the bed this month.




You know what doesn't suck?  A good shredded pork taco.  Snow days call for comfort food and even though I made these a week ago, they hit the spot and were probably the best soft taco I've ever made.  The secret?  Use the crock pot.  I'm trying to get in the habit of using it more. 




Juicy, fork-tender pork piled high on a warmed flour tortilla with your favorite fixings!   I did not follow a recipe.  Well for time/temps I sort of did just to get an idea, but the crock pot is so simple!

Here's how I made it:

Crock pot shredded pork tacos

-2-3 lb pork roast/loin
-2 cups brown rice { I like minute rice }
-1 large onion, cut in long strips
-2-3 cups water
-1 packet taco seasoning mix/fajita seasoning
-salt
-pepper
-garlic powder
-paprika
-your fav. tortillas and toppings.  I love sour cream, cilantro and shredded cheese! NOM!


-Rinse pork roast with warm water and remove any unnecessary fat. Dry with paper towel.  Massage all of the spices on the roast and place in crock pot.  Add the rice, water, seasoning mix, and chopped onion and spread/stir generously for a minute. Cover and cook on low for 8-10 hours.




These were divine!


Please have a glass of wine for me, make these tacos and give a good FU to January with me, will ya?

Enjoy your Wednesday!



January 13, 2014

Things that happened this weekend


Hiiii !


Long time, no writing! For me anyway.  How are you?!




I hope your weekend was fabulous. Mine was pretty fabulous as well and I just don't understand why both 'S' days leave in the blink of an eye!  That's not cool.

Let's hope this week rushes by, as last week, in my opinion, just dragged and dragged. *snooze fest*



So,things that happened this weekend.  Notice a pattern so far?  Sugary treats...pastries. Mmmm pastries. My evil weakness.  Lots of yummy goodies surrounded me this weekend.

On Friday after work, I had a narly sweet tooth and stopped at Di Bruno Bros. for their awesome black and white cookie they sell.  On the train ride home, it totally hit the spot. When I got home I took Sam to get groomed and while Petsmart was pretty busy, it worked out great so that hubby and I could get in dinner AND even dessert before we picked up him up!  The rest of night involved feeling crazy stuffed, watching random TV shows and us passing out by midnight.  That seems to be the occuring theme for our Fridays as of late :)




Saturday was my baby shower and it was such a nice time!  Baby girl Stonerock is already so loved and I have never seen so much stuff for something that is currently the size of a cantaloupe...according to my I Phone app. 



 Can't wait to organize!





Can you stand these baby legwarmers?!

Saturday was ugly and rainy most of the day, so by the time we got home we decided to wait until Sunday to unload everything since it was down pouring.  My parents came over the next day because we had stuff loaded in their car and our car. We unloaded everything in her room and I went through everything again. Teared up for a moment. And then felt exhaustion hit me like a truck and I decided to relax on the couch for the rest of the day.  It was soooo nice.  One of the many perks about being pregnant; especially towards the end. Just. Relax. :)


Sunday hubby made some mac and cheese for us and we watched football and Friends.  Again, it was just very relaxing.  I felt like such a lazy bum yesterday since I didn't shower all day and remained in my pjs and binged on donuts but hey, it was what it was. :)



Tonight we have a private tour of the hospital which should be cool and tomorrow we are checking out a pediatrician that's literally 5 minutes from our house!  Pray that we really like the doctor and the office because it would be so nice to have a doctor that close for baby!

Enjoy the rest of your week!


What do you enjoy doing on lazy days?

What is your #1 weakness that you rarely eat, but when you do, you go alllll out? 
Donuts/cheese danish/mainly all sorts of pastries :)