Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Kicking and Kale. And Cookies.

I started feeling the baby kick tonight.  I've been feeling flutterings inside for a while, but tonight was the first time that I could feel the kicks with a hand on my belly.  And I have a belly.  I've already started getting comments about how big I am for being four months along.  Actually, I fudged a bit, since I'm not actually, technically four months yet.  I'm seventeen and a half weeks, so close enough.  With my first, I was constantly asked if I was carrying twins.  I gained over forty pounds, and it was pretty much all belly, so I looked like I was defying gravity.  I love feeling the baby move around inside me; it is my absolute favourite part of being pregnant.  Granted, there aren't many favourite things about being pregnant to choose from.  I am so thankful and thrilled to be having another child, but I am not one of those people who loves being pregnant.  You know those people - who say that they've never felt better than when they are pregnant.  I am not one of those people who don't know that they are pregnant until quite far into the pregnancy.  I knew before the pregnancy test was even certain enough to be conclusive.  I remember the doctor saying: "Well, if you are pregnant, it's just barely."  I knew!  I was hoping that the nausea would continue to improve and completely go away, but I think it has plateaued.  Oh well, it's definitely more manageable now, and probably a little less severe overall than with my pregnancy with my son.  I had to be hospitalized a few times during that pregnancy for several days at a time because I just couldn't keep anything down. Thank the Lord he turned out fantastic despite those early months of pregnancy.  Today, he surprised me by draping his blanket over his head and explaining to be that he was a shepherd.  Then, he wrapped it around his arms and said he was a bat, flying.  He's starting to pick up so many things that I'm not even aware of.  Which is great, and scary!  I'm really trying to cut down on the amount of TV that he watches.  We were doing so well with TV until this pregnancy.  It's so much harder to give him the attention he needs and deserves when I'm feeling sick and exhausted.  Grace, grace, grace.  This too shall pass!

I'm glad I have a husband who appreciates and even loves my quirks.  I'm a bit obsessive sometimes when I get an idea in my head.  I started making some more egg tree ornaments this week, and have been really enjoying creating snowflake eggs in my quiet moments when the little one is in bed and said hubby is off at evening meetings.  I bought a couple dozen eggs, and was disappointed to discover that they had been mechanically scrubbed, meaning that they don't absorb the dye properly.  I only discovered this after making a handful of them and then putting them all in the dye, so that batch of eggs didn't turn out that well.  He suggested finding some eggs from a local farmer, so that I could ask about how they are washed.  I checked on craigslist and found a local farmer who delivers eggs to your house for $4 a dozen.  I'm sure they are great - they are free-range and non-medicated.  I'm actually allergic to eggs, ironically enough.  I emailed and asked for any of the odd-shaped, sized, or coloured eggs, and he said he would give them to me for $2.50 a dozen.  So, the egg man came that night with two dozen unscrubbed eggs for my current decorating obsession.  Here are some of the recent additions:

I ate two bunches of kale tonight.  I saw some "kale chips" at the store a while ago, and they looked strangely delicious.  I tried making them once before with only so-so results, so I've been trying a few different variations on recipes lately and I think I've figured it out.  Kale is supposed to be very nutritious, so I thought it might be worth figuring out a good way to eat it.  Wikipedia it if your are interested in finding out more about the nutritional value.  I use nutritional yeast in this recipe.  If you haven't heard of it, I'm not surprised; most people haven't.  It's a fantastic product and has made my dairy-allergic-life much more enjoyable.  It's a deactivated yeast that is high in B-vitamins and protein.  You can find it at health food stores, and Real Canadian Superstore even carries it now in their natural/organic aisle.  It has a kind of cheesy taste to it, which is why a lot of vegan recipes use it.  To make the kale chips, here's what I did:

  • Wash the kale.  Apparently, kale is one of the dirty dozen in terms of retaining pesticides, so it's best to buy organic if you can find it.  
  • Tear into smallish pieces, and discard the tough middle stem.  
  • Dry the leaves as well as you can.  I used a salad spinner, and this worked quite well.  
  • Combine a quarter cup of apple cider vinegar and oil.  I used olive oil, but I'm sure other oils would work too.  Mix with a fork or whisk.
  • Put the kale in a large mixing bowl, and pour oil/vinegar mixture over kale.  Using your hands mix it all around so that the oil/vinegar coats the kale leaves.  
  • Spread the kale out on a cookie sheet in a single layer.
  • Sprinkle with seasoning salt (optional) and nutritional yeast (also optional, but delicious!)
  • Bake at 200 degrees F for 2 to 2.5 hours, until the leaves are crispy but not burnt.  There are recipes that instruct you to bake it at a much higher temperature for a shorter time, but apparently this destroys some of the nutritional value of the kale.  It's also easier to miss that window of time between crispy and burnt at the higher temperature.  You can eat it before it gets crispy too, but I think I prefer the crispy style.  You can also use your food dehydrator instead of the oven if you have one.  I haven't tried this method since that would involve getting my food dehydrator out of the bottom of the linen closet.  Which would mean organizing the closet.  
I think they are delicious, and my two year old gobbled them up too.  My hubby wasn't super excited about them, so I guess they're not for everyone.  But worth a try if you're trying to figure out a way to eat that mysterious green vegetable.  

Enough with the vegetable talk.  I'm exhausted but I think I need to bake some cookies.

1 comment:

  1. Ohhh sounds great! I never thought of making kale chips. I like to make kale smoothies. Sounds gross, but it's not at all!! I combine kale, a banana, berries and almond milk in the blender and presto....a great smoothie. If you don't like the texture of Kale in the smoothie, you can use spinach. Seriously...you can't tell there's anything green in there!


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