Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Freezer Meal prep

Ok, there is just something about seeing those teeny little newborn diapers and swaddles ready to go in the dresser, right? Eric did a lot of work clearing out the nursery this weekend and you can actually walk in there now.

Still has a bunch of random crap, but LESS random crap.
My friend just asked me what the theme of the nursery is. The theme is "stuff we got for free and/or already owned". See - really old junky dresser, equally old futon because we still plan to use it as a guest room temporarily while the baby sleeps with us.

I even bought a print for the wall which is SO not like me. Now the question is, will I actually get it hung before the kid can talk and voice his or her own preferences? #notlikely There are very few clothes in the dresser yet because even though I am fine with dressing a girl in Dalton's old clothes, I have a giant bin of cute as hell newborn clothes from my niece so I'm holding out to see which one to unpack.

Now I'm at the point where every morning I go through my day and try to get an idea of what we would do if I went into labor at all the various points. Spoiler - most of them are "I don't really know, it's not convenient, I probably won't go into labor today anyway". I'm group strep B positive again, which isn't really worth mentioning except that it means I need to get to the hospital right away if my water breaks to receive antibiotics. And daycare is in the complete opposite direction of the hospital, but my water never broke with Dalton and I got the antibiotics in plenty of time so I'm sure it will all be fine.

I'm pretty sure this baby will be born around my due date (May 13), like his or her older brother. No reason, just my intuition. Speaking of, I have NO clue about the sex. Absolutely none. I was 100% sure Dalton was a boy from 8 weeks on, and had two really vivid dreams the tech told us it was a boy the night before we found out. This time - I've had almost 38 weeks and I'm completely clueless. Eric thinks it's a girl.

I'm blogging right now primarily to brag that I'm pretty proud of myself. With Dalton, I did a pretty decent job preparing freezer meals, especially considering we were in an apartment with a freezer approximately the size of a shoe box.

So much easier with an actual kitchen.

This time, we have plenty of room, but I'm lacking energy. Severely lacking. Like, it's seriously a problem. I was also kind of lost about what to make, because a lot of things that freeze so well (chili, soup, casseroles) aren't always what you're craving on a 100 degree day in July. I had resigned myself to relying on takeout post baby. While that's a delicious option that I appreciate, it's not ideal for the following reasons.

  • I'm already not thrilled about spending summer with the post - baby fat, and ordering pizza on the reg isn't going to help anything in that department. 
  • The mom guilt is strong with adding a sibling, I really don't need to be feeding my kid massive amounts of takeout to add to that. We're FAR from psychos who don't let our kids eat birthday cake or anything, but I try to give him some nice home-cooked meals which include veggies., even if he doesn't necessarily eat them. 
  • It's expensive, and you know what else is expensive? Kids. 
Don't get me wrong, I see plenty of delicious takeout in our future, in fact, it's been a significant part of my pregnancy diet. But I actually got motivated enough to ensure that we will at least be eating some home - cooked, decently healthy (or at least healthier than Dominos) meals this summer. 

In progress

I relied on my friend Jessy's Guide to Freezer Meals (which I highly recommend) and Pioneer Woman, because, it's Pioneer Woman. Here's what I made: 

  • PW Enchiladas - Eric is so not a leftover person and he was so mad when I said he couldn't eat the rest of these because I was freezing them for post baby - they are AMAZING.
  • PW Turkey Tetrazzini - I made this when pregnant with Dalton and froze it and it was pretty much our favorite frozen meal of them all. 
  • PW breakfast burritos - I severely neglected breakfast in my meal prep last time and clearly that's not going to fly with a toddler during round 2. I actually made banana bread several times this pregnancy to freeze, but, it never made it to the freezer. It's so addicted. I've never tried these but they smell delicious and, again, it's Pioneer Woman.

The filling

  • Chicken and Parmesan Soup with Spinach and Orzo - I figured we can just blast the AC to get in the mood for this, I made this soup before and it's totally worth eating even in June. 
  • Turkey Chili - Same as above, and you just can't go wrong with chili. 
  • French Onion Chicken - I didn't save the link for this recipe because it didn't wow us, but we had leftovers that I froze and we would eat it again. 
  • My mom's baked ziti with homemade sauce - It's epic. Just trust me. We had it for dinner tonight and there are tons of leftovers to freeze. 
I forgot at least one ingredient for every recipe, because, pregnancy brain, but the following two the forgotten ingredients were crucial, so I plan to finish tomorrow after hitting the store. 

Jessy has assured me they are both delicious, and will be easy to throw on the grill with some veggies. I loved taking Dalton to the farmer's market as a baby, and I have high hopes of figuring out how to leave the house with two kids and do it again this summer.

I'm also hoping to make How Sweet Eats lactation cookie recipe, because I love all her recipes, and freeze the dough, but I haven't gotten there yet. 

Dalton loves to help in the kitchen. While his company is always appreciated, it's not always helpful. I had to do most of these while he wasn't home, or while Eric was there to assist his helping. I love having him around to cook dinner, but cooking that many meals required serious focus (I made the enchiladas, turkey tetrazzini and french onion chicken earlier but the rest I knocked out in one day).

What's your favorite takeout food? We got Five Guys the other day, and I've carefully considered this, and I really feel Shake Shack is superior to Five Guys. Thoughts? Other current obsessions is a local pizza place near our house, and in general I've just been more into Indian food than usual this pregnancy (but it's always delicious).


Thanks for commenting! Comments make me probably more happy than they should.