August 27, 2014

When Life Gives You Overripe Bananas...

The only thing to do is to use them up!

Years ago when I worked onboard the Love Boat, crew members would routinely request bananas from the galley whenever they had a craving for baking. Bananas were plentiful in Africa... but they still went brown after a few days of being stored onboard. In such cases (and depending on the chef...) they were often up for grabs rather than getting tossed out with the garbage.

The ship was equipped with small crew kitchens called ripostos. (I have no idea if that is the correct spelling... I've never figured out where the term came from.) 

Spelling aside, I was never a fan of cooking in these ripostos -- mainly because they never seemed to be up to my standard of cleanliness. Plus, we had a whole crew of kitchen staff who served us three meals a day. Nevertheless, I occasionally wanted to bake something. Anything.

I acquired a small oven (on par with the looks of a child's easy bake...) and somehow I was allowed to use it in my tiny cabin. Along with my own coffee maker, it allowed me to have a homey feel when I started to get claustrophobic about eating in the same dining room as hundreds of other people.

I love having no-fail recipes. My no-fail recipe onboard was an apple cake made with an insane amount of oil and a fridge milk-tart (admittedly, I failed numerous times on the latter one until I figured out the difference between corn starch and corn meal. DUH.) I don't think I had a no-fail banana bread recipe at the time, but eventually, I found one on land. This Banana Banana Bread one is in my favorites and is insanely quick and easy.

So quick and easy in fact that yesterday, after lunch, I commented to the sailor how rotten the bananas looked on the counter, and within minutes of him suggesting I make banana bread, the ingredients were mixed and in the oven.

An hour later.... Banana Banana Bread. Baked in and served on vintage Pyrex, of course.


August 22, 2014

Gift Blankets

My mom used to say that a baby can never have too many blankets. I'm starting to think that is true. Even though it's summer, it seems that I have a blanket in the laundry daily. 

The only thing more fun than making a blanket as a gift for someone with a baby, is receiving one (or two!) in the mail as gifts for your own little one. 

I'm fortunate enough to have friends around the world... and even though not many of my pals actually knit and crochet, some of their mothers do. These two blankets made their way into our post box courtesy of some talented moms. 

I told my friends that I didn't have 'colors' picked out (see this post about the non-nursery) but that I wanted calm colors that reminded me of a safari (inspired by these critters.) 

Even though they are both totally different, I love the 'safari inspiration' in each of them!

August 15, 2014

A New Day

A few weeks ago, I lamented the lack of hummingbirds on the porch. 

The day after I arrived home from the hospital with the Peanut... I sat outside unabashedly in my bathrobe while the apartment complex tested their fire alarms. The maintenance men were good enough to give us a warning, so we waited outside to avoid the noise. 

The Sailor made me coffee... the first I'd had since about December. I had gone off of coffee early on in pregnancy and then just never really craved it after that. After a few sleepless nights with the Peanut, I caved in and got back on the juice.

While sitting outside with that perfect cup of coffee, the sun streaming on the porch, I held my wee babe in my arms and pondered the enormity of how my life had just changed. When I looked up, a hummingbird fluttered past and onto the red flowers. 

At certain times in all of our lives we all need a little sign... for years I felt a sense of calm and relief whenever I saw a rainbow, especially if life had been difficult or I'd been through some tumultuous event. A rainbow symbolized to me that all would be well within my soul. 

I haven't seen a rainbow for a very long time. And after a night wrestling with my own hormonal tears, trying to decipher the Peanut's cries and to figure out whether I was fit to be a mother, I saw that lone hummingbird. 

And just like that... I knew that all would be well.  

Later that same day, the hummingbird returned so that both the Sailor and I could both see him. And he's been back several times since. 

Sometimes we all need a little daily reminder -- even if it's just a fleeting one.

August 7, 2014


The Peanut has arrived!

And he's a perfect little BIG boy!

{As I mentioned in the last post, I will be taking some time off from blogging while I figure out this whole new mama role. Please note that I won't be posting much in the near future, but rest assured, I'll be back once I get into a routine...

Photo by Bella Baby Photography; used with permission.