food

THE LOVE SERIES #4: A Good Cuppa

This is the fourth installment of the Love Series and it centers around something that, without fail, will lift my spirits: a good cuppa. Whether it is coffee or tea, a good cup of hot liquid is something I truly love and usually features in my self-care days. So make yourself a hot brew and enjoy!

Watercolor and Ink. And yes, I was drinking a cup of tea while I painted this. :P

Watercolor and Ink. And yes, I was drinking a cup of tea while I painted this. šŸ˜›

Ā© 2016. Angelle Conant. All Rights Reserved.

Tips for a 3rd Trimester Babymoon

The husband and I recently took a weekend-long babymoon to Galveston, TX while I was 37 weeks pregnant. We learned a lot about the do’s and don’ts of a having a successful trip – our lessons are here for youĀ so that you might get the most out of your vacation, whether it’s a babymoon or not.

  1. Vacation somewhere close to home. This one seems pretty obvious, but I’d thought I’d throw it in anyways. Because I was in my 3rd trimester and only 3 weeks away from my due date, trips to distant lands were out. Galveston is only an hour away from Houston so if something were to happen, we could be home in a very short time.
  2. Think about the kind of vacation you really want and choose your city and hotel accordingly. Do you want it to be more about relaxing or exploring? For us, we wanted a relaxing babymoon so that we could rest and reconnect before our little one’s arrival. If it’s relaxing that you want, then it might be best to choose a smaller town with only minimal attractions and more relaxing activities. If you’re looking for a more exciting and exploratory babymoon where you can share some new experiences, a bigger city might be a better fit. For us, we kind of halfway hit the mark on this one – Galveston is great for sleeping late, relaxing beach walks, sitting in rocking chairs and drinking beer (for the husband), but it has also turned into quite the party town, which we were not in the mood to do.
  3. You don’t need to spend a lot of money for it to be nice or considered ‘pampering’ – value is what matters. We, foolishly, did not follow this one. We ended up spending quite a bit on a historic hotel and, in the end, it wasn’t worth it. The hotel was catered more towards the party goers of Galveston and had jazz music in the lobby until 10pm. After that ended, the bar in the lobby was still open until late and the voices of the inebriated could be heard in our room all night. Not great sleep makes for a cranky, pregnant wife.
  4. When planning your day, take into account your limits and needs. This includes things like: is there a restroom that I can get to within 5 minutes (or less)? Can I get snack and water within 5 minutes? One thing that does help is carrying a large, filled water bottle and snacks everywhere.Ā Also, take into account the level of physical activity that will be required. My little one dropped the day before we were scheduled to leave so walking far distances became something I couldn’t do. Also, the closer it gets to my due date, the more naps and rests I seem to need which is something we had to account for. I’ve also been more sensitive to heat and sun exposure during the pregnancy – another thing to account for.
  5. Plan your food ahead of time if you can. This was one of the best parts of the trip – eating yummy, yummy food so go ahead and get excited about it by planning ahead. And don’t try and drive around to find a good food place when preggo is already hungry – have a place to eat and get there. Be okay with some disappointments – there are always risks in trying new places, even with good online reviews. And if you’re not up for disappointment, it’s okay to go to some chain restaurant that is familiar. Also, try to plan ahead for some healthy food options. During my pregnancy, I’ve become accustomed to eating quite healthfully and was disappointed by the choices at most restaurants. By the end of the weekend, my body was seriously craving some collard greens.
  6. Lastly, ask for what you want. I had a great day on the first day of our tripĀ because we ended up cuddled up in the hotel room watching Sherlock Holmes. I didn’t care if it seemed lame, it was what we wanted to do, so we did it!

This post can also be found on Offbeat Home. šŸ™‚

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Sauteed Collard Greens with Beans and Onions

This is a great, complete meal as it has 2 vegetables and a protein – plus it’s delicious, quick and easy which is important for a woman who is very pregnant!

Servings: 1-2

Ingredients

  • bunch of collard greens, washed, dried and ripped up (remove the big stems)
  • about 1/2 cup diced onions
  • 1 T minced garlic
  • 2-3 T olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • liquid smoke to taste
  • 1/2 can black beans (or you can use black eyed peas)

Directions

  1. Pour olive oil in pan and bring to medium heat
  2. Add onions and cook until soft
  3. Add minced garlic and let it cook until its aroma fills your kitchen
  4. Add collard greens, salt and a little pepper – sautee until bright green
  5. Add just a little bit of water (about 1/4 cup) to the pan and let the collard greens soften to your liking
  6. Add the black beans and cook for an additional 3 minutes until the black beans are warmed through
  7. Add salt, pepper, and liquid smoke to taste (about 10 drops of liquid smoke should do it; more or less depending on your preferences)
  8. Enjoy!

Sauteed Mustard Greens and Sweet Potato Recipe

I served this recipe with Amy’s Vegetarian Chili over quinoa and brown rice. Yum!

Servings: 2

Ingredients

  • Washed and chopped mustard greens
  • 2 T olive oil
  • sweet potato
  • salt
  • pepper
  • 1/4 cup water

Directions

  1. Put sweet potato in microwave under damp paper towel for five minutes (original directions here).
  2. While that cooks, heat olive oil to medium heat in saucepan.
  3. Add minced garlic and let it cook until aroma fills your kitchen.
  4. Add mustard greens, salt and a little pepper and sautee until bright green.
  5. After 5 minutes in microwave, turn over sweet potato and cook for another 5 minutes under damp paper towel.
  6. After mustard greens are nicely sauteed, add water and cover until mustard greens are cooked to your liking. If they cook before all the water evaporates you can either remove the lid and let the water evaporate more quickly or use the lid to hold the mustard greens in the pan as you carefully pour the water out and into the sink.
  7. Once the potato is read, peel the skin and chop up into cubes. Be careful, the potato will be hot!
  8. Add sweet potato cubes to your saucepan and enjoy!
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