Hi, I'm Rachel.

A few years ago I could barely boil water.

True story.

Determined to be a kick ass wife, I developed a love for football and learned to cook in my tiny Jersey City kitchen. I spend my days working in Manhattan, my nights and weekends chasing after a rambunctious toddler, and the hours in between cooking with my husband and feeding my TV habit...oh, and I blog about it all! 

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Tuesday
Mar032015

Eating Meals Together


When I grew up, we always ate dinner as a family. My mom always cooked and had dinner ready for when my dad arrived home from work. I always pictured my own family doing the same. Of course, like many things in life that I underestimate, weeknights don't always lend themselves to this.

I don't know about you, but this is something that I truly strive for and have little success with. It's no secret that Shaun and I really love food. And not only do we love eating it, but some of my favorite moments are when we are cooking together in the kitchen with an open bottle of wine and chatting about our day or the latest craze circling the Internet. This doesn't happen so much anymore. Often our dinners consist of Shaun prepping while I get some Penelope time and then hurrying to finish it all up so that we can eat right after Penelope goes to sleep.

It's not very glamorous and we certainly don't eat with Penelope on most evenings. I don't arrive home from work until almost 7, which just feels so late to only be starting her dinner. Because after her dinner, it's bath time, then milk & snuggle time, and then bedtime. That's a lot to squeeze into one hour. So usually, Shaun ends up feeding her when they arrive home from daycare around 6:15, and she's finishing up by the time I arrive home. I take over for bath and pre-bedtime duties. Then it's Mom and Dad's dinner time.

Now that she is getting a bit older, I want to make an effort for all of us to eat together. It's not always going to be realistic due to these truly sucky time constraints, but my goal is two week nights each week to start. This will mean having our food prepped in advance or eating leftovers, which I'm not opposed to, it will just require more planning. It's the only way to get dinner on the table quickly after work and still get Penelope into bed at her usual time. And as a bonus, Shaun and I get what feels like a longer night!

As Penelope grows, it's becoming increasingly important to lead by example. I want her to enjoy preparing food and then sharing that meal with the people she loves. Some of my favorite family memories are of us sitting around the kitchen table, and these memories continue to be made as we are adults.

This weekend, Penelope was enthralled by helping me make a French toast scramble. She peeled and broke up the banana, she watched amazed as I cracked the eggs. And she was so excited when I gave her a fork to help mix it all up. She watched as I cooked it on the stove top - I made sure to explain to her that only Mommy and Daddy do that part because it's very hot and dangerous - and then couldn't wait to sit down together to eat it all up. And she did!

So ultimately, this is a new weekly goal. Two dinners together each week. I'll keep you posted on how it goes!


Do you eat meals with your children? Or do your kids eat first while you and your spouse eat at ungodly hours after they've gone to sleep?

 

Also: additional tips for eating together, getting kids involved in the kitchen

Friday
Feb272015

Happy Friday!

Happy Friday friends!

I'm finally ready to declare that I'm so totally beyond over this cold weather. I usually try not to complain about cold weather because I'm such a hot weather hater, but enough is enough. The above photo was taken from my office over the Hudson River, which was almost completely frozen earlier this week. My co-workers and I were all going nuts over this truly amazing sunset which reflected its gorgeousness over the frozen river. I know that I've posted pictures of this view a lot, but this was too incredible not to share!

So what are your weekend plans? We are going to meet my best friend's new baby tomorrow and I cannot wait to snuggle her! Tonight we have big plans to catch up on Justified. Have you been watching this final season? It's really one of my favorite shows and I will be so so bummed when it is over. This season has also been particularly awesome, which is not something that most final seasons can claim. I don't know what I'm going to do when I can no longer get my Boyd OR Jax fix (see Sons of Anarchy final season also).

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend! Here are some links to keep you distracted today!

 

Have you seen the dress? What color do you see? I'm on team gold & white 4E.

What time do you put your kids to bed? This mom claims 7 is the perfect time. (Penelope's bedtime is 8!)

I made these truly amazing flourless black bean brownies last weekend. So so good.

A look at the mobile payment app, Venmo...do you use it? We use it all the time in the office to pay for lunch.

32 will they or won't they TV couples. I love this stuff so much.

Some good Mom advice.

This post about freezing time totally hit home.

This roasted vegetable lasagna. Yum.

Thursday
Feb262015

Simple Beauty Secret Weapon: Bold Lips

dolce & gabbana rubio (similar)/revlon colorbust lip butter in red velvet (similar)/younique lucrative lip gloss in luscious/model co in peony/estee lauder pure color in forbidden apple


One of the things that has really suffered since becoming a working Mom is my beauty routine. I really used to love getting a made up for the day, having perfectly funky manicured nails and just looking polished. Now on most days I have little time or desire to wear more than mascara. My severely baggy eyes are another story altogether.

My makeup routine has been minimized to a very light layer of foundation (sometimes this only makes it under said baggy eyes), blush and mascara. This helps but it still looks like I'm not wearing makeup on most days.

Enter my secret weapon: the bold lip.

This is my new favorite look. It takes a dull looking face and suddenly makes it seem full of life. My eyes look bluer. My teeth look whiter. My face looks more alive than undead. And I look like I gave a damn when I left the house that morning. A bold lip calls for simple makeup on the rest of your face as it demands to be the star of the show. I'm happy to oblige! I continue the above routine and then simply add some bold lipstick after I drop Penelope off at daycare for the day (that way I can smother her in kisses without worry of getting red lipstick all over her).

The above collage showcases some of my very favorite colors and formulas!

So tell me, what's your beauty secret weapon?