Simply Nourish Bowl

This is by far one of my favorite dishes for brunch... and I say brunch because you can enjoy it at either breakfast or lunch. As a new mom, this is also the dish that makes me feel most put-together– it's luxurious, balanced, and powerful start to your day! Best of all, it takes about 3min to prepare. I've remade this recipe at least 3x since having Winnie & will usually freeze 6-8 bowls at a time. 

Recipe (Serves 1):

  • 1 c Chopped Lacinato Kale
  • 1/2 c Diced Sweet Potato, Baked
  • 1/4 c Organic Black Beans
  • 1/4 c Quinoa, Cooked
  • 2 Pasture Raised Eggs

Prepare quinoa and sweet potato in advance. For quinoa cook plain, 1 to 1 ration of quinoa to water. For sweet potatoes wash and cut into 1inch wedges– bake plain. 

Dish up kale, quinoa, sweet potatoes (diced), and black beans. To store for later, use quart sized freezer Ziploc & leave some air in the bag– do not pack down. When ready to enjoy, microwave for approx 2min from frozen. In small nonstick pan, fry two whole eggs– I highly recommend pasture raised! Serve over easy for that runny yolk, top with salt, pepper, and hot sauce (optional). Enjoy! 
 

353 Cal / 43g Carbs. / 11g Fat. / 21g Protein  



 
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Loaded Pasta Sauce

Loaded Pasta Sauce

Continuing our Meal Pre Series, this recipe is an adaptation of Keri Glassman's (MS, RD, CDN) Squash Champion. Needless to say, while you're welcome to serve this with pasta, I recommend spaghetti squash– the sweetness from the squash compliments the sauce and spices beautifully for a complete and balanced dish! Altogether, this meal is loaded with protein & rich in nutrients while keeping your calorie count low.

Recipe (Serves 6):

  • 1 Diced Red Onion (Small) 
  • 1 tbsp Minced Garlic
  • 1 tbsp Fresh Rosemary
  • 4 Whole Organic Tomatoes
  • 1 c Organic Strained Tomatoes
  • 6 cups Organic Baby Spinach
  • 1 lb Ground Beef or Turkey 
  • 1 tbs Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Pinch of Cheyenne
  • 1tsp Red Pepper Flakes 

Sauté onion, garlic, and rosemary in olive oil until onion is transparent. Remove rosemary branches, add diced tomatoes and spices. Cover and simmer on low. In separate pan, brown ground beef or turkey with rosemary. Once cooked, add protein to sauce. Stir in strained tomatoes and spinach, cover and simmer until spinach is soft. Serve over spaghetti squash & sprinkle with grated parmesan. For meal prep, freeze & reheat once spaghetti squash is cooked and ready to enjoy!

*Disclaimer– I love spinach, so I load up on this recipe. Paul could probably do with less spinach and more meat. The choice is yours. 
 

202 Cal / 10g Carbs. / 10g Fat. / 17g Protein  - Per Serving



 
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Tropical Power Bowl

Tropical Power Bowl

When considering the nutritional data below, you'll notice this recipe is both high calorie and high fat, but don't be deceived, the main source of calories is quinoa, and the fat content is primarily sourced from coconut and almonds. All of these are whole, unprocessed, high quality ingredients– quinoa, a protein rich superfood, and both almonds & coconut rich in health benefits including improved heart health, lower cholesterol, healthy brain function, and a boost in metabolism (perfect for breakfast). In fact, in fitness, healthy fats are necessary to both shed excess weight and keep it off. Additionally, the ingredients in this recipe are all rich in fiber proven to keep you feeling full longer.

Personally, I enjoy this dish as either a breakfast or afternoon snack. Consider it a hot cereal bowl to satisfy that sweet tooth ;)

Recipe (Serves 1):

  • 1/2 c Cooked Organic Quinoa
  • 1/2 c Mango Chunks (Trader Joe's)
  • 2 tbsp Unsweetened Shredded Coconut
  • 1 tbsp Organic Chia Seeds
  • 1/4 tsp Pure Vanilla Extract
  • 1/2 tsp Organic Agave Nectar
  • 1/2 c Unsweetened Coconut Milk
  • 1 tsp Raw Sliced Almonds
  • 1/4 tsp Ground Cinnamon

Mix quinoa, mango, coconut, chia seeds, and vanilla extract, this will serve as your base. From here either freeze for later or add warm coconut milk to enjoy immediately. Top with almond slices, shredded coconut, and cinnamon.

421 Cal / 57g Carbs. / 19g Fat. / 10g Protein  - Per Serving



 
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How I Meal Prepped for Baby + 6 Recipes

While waiting for Winnie's debut one of my biggest priorities was meal prep. Even though we'd have family visiting– and parents who were more than happy to cook or order out– I knew I wanted to have balanced meals available for healthier choices when left to my own vices. If I'm honest, I probably went overboard, but I was having fun playing with recipes and planning out my postpartum nutrition plan. Was that much meal prep necessary? Probably not, but I now know just how valuable it was in the weeks following our little one's arrival.

Why focus on food so much when adjusting to a newborn?...

I'm a firm believer that in order to care well for others unless you first take care of yourself. Since I'd decided to breastfeed, I knew that nutrition would be more critical than ever. I predicted late nights, early mornings, and little to no time to cook a healthy meal. I knew I would need to accommodate an additional 500 calories to nurse, and from what I'd read, women who breastfed were generally hungrier throughout the day. I wanted to set myself up for success both in postpartum recovery and caring for baby.

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What I prepared?...

While I didn't plan on prioritizing breakfast recipes, in hindsight I'm really glad I did! 

Adjusting to life with a newborn, this is by far the hardest meal to prepare in real time. I can't tell you how satisfying it is to whip out a complete and somewhat luxurious meal in no more than 2-5minutes. With many of these recipes all that's left to do is warm some milk or fry a couple eggs and not only do I feel nourished, but heck, I feel pretty darn put together, and THAT goes a long way as a new mom! 

Was it Really that helpful?

YES! While our freezer was maxed out, and Paul was convinced I was going overboard, since Winnie's arrival, I've remade these recipes multiple times! Both Paul and I have found the breakfast options incredibly helpful during hectic mornings, and I've thoroughly enjoyed the added snack options throughout the day. Assuming that dinners would be covered by parents, I only prepared one dinner option, and once all of our visitors left, it proved a nice transition. 

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Anything else you did to prepare?

While I didn't finish our nursery or pack my hospital bag until the week of, food and other household necessities were on stock and ready to go! I can't tell you how many Amazon orders I made in the month leading up to Winnie's arrival. In addition to the meals I prepared, I made sure to stock some frozen fruit (smoothies), veggie burgers, fish, and protein bars. 

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As I pulled all of these recipes for you, this post became unbearably long, so rather than overwhelm you, I'll be sharing one recipe per day for the remainder of the week. Because the nutritional value of these meals is extremely important to me, I've included nutrition facts with each recipe, but should you have any questions you can always leave a comment or DM me via Insta. I hope you enjoy, and let me know what you think!

 

Green Detox

Recipe (Serves 2):

  • 3 c Organic Baby Spinach
  • 1/2 Granny Smith Apple
  • 1/2 Cucumber
  • 1 1/2 Celery Stalk
  • 1/2 Banana
  • 3/4 to 1c Pineapple (adds to sweetness)
  • 1/2 c Organic Nonfat Keifer - Plain
  • 1/2 c Water
  • 1 squeeze Lemon

Combine all ingredients in a Ziploc bag and freeze. When ready to enjoy, add keifer, water, lemon and blend until smooth. *Pro Tip: leave some air in each bag. Originally, I wanted to conserve freezer space, so I packed these down as much as possible, however, when it came time to prepare, I was stuck with a brick of frozen greens and an overworked blender. 

135 Cal / 30g Carbs. / 0g Fat. / 5g Protein  - Per Serving

 



 
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10 Tips to Curb Winter Skin


I have normal to dry skin, with occasional eczema outbreaks. Winter is not my friend. 

To make matters worse, during last fall I developed a common, but annoying pregnancy symptom known as itchy skin. While there are rare cases in which itchy skin can indicate liver complications, for me this was no more than a change in blood flow and hormones (plus a growing baby & stretching skin). Nevertheless, more than any other symptom this one drove me mad, and eventually I was forced to make some changes.  

After an in depth look at my skincare routine and some inevitable trial and error, I was able to find a few options to ease those winter blues. Below are some helpful tricks I developed along the way… 

 

Hydrate:

H20, but you already knew that... Regardless, during winter, add more– especially if pregnant! Not only does water keep us feeling hydrated, but it also helps on a deeper level aiding in metabolic function, muscle function, appetite, and overall immune health. If you get bored with water (9months will do that), try adding lemon or other natural fruits/veggies. 

Check your ingredients:

I was lathering myself in moisturizers to no avail. I’d been using the same products for years, and while I believed them to be clean & safe, eventually I had to swap some out for milder alternatives. At the time I went so far as to switch to organic baby wash and moisturizer, but have since found more mainstream & budget friendly alternatives. Bottom line, the shorter the ingredient list, the better. Also, check EWG’s product ratings or download the ThinkDirty app for quick reference while shopping. 

Keep it simple:

While it’s not necessarily convenient, consider coconut oil as a moisturizer. This isn’t your best option if seeking to get out the door quickly, as you’ll have to let the oil soak in for some time. Personally, I like to shower at night, so taking a little extra time to towel dry and wrap myself in loose PJs isn’t a big ask. Full disclosure, I’m not the most patient person, so most days I mix one part coconut oil to one part moisturizer.

Multi-Task:

I use coconut oil for everything, including makeup-removal– works wonders on mascara. I know some have complained about breaking out while using coconut oil, but that’s never been the case for me, plus it’s a natural anti-microbial, so the clean freak in me can’t think of a better skin remedy. While I use coconut oil on my body almost daily, I only use it on my face a couple times a week (and a little goes a long way). If coconut oil’s not for you, consider adding another face oil. Personally, I’ve had great experiences with Skinceuticals CE Ferulic, and all 3 of Beauty Counter’s Face oils. I prefer adding this step after I shower when pores are clear. Like I said, I tend to shower at night, and I like knowing nothing will be layered over this treatment until morning. In general try to let each of your skincare products settle into your skin before adding another. 

Hit Snooze:

For most of my life I washed my face both at night and in morning. There’s no alternative to washing your face at night– ask any esthetician, and they'll confirm you should never fall asleep with all that makeup. That being said,, you can skip the morning wash. Pending you keep clean linens and pillows, there’s really no need to wash up come morning, as doing so will only strip your skin of all those good natural oils it's developed overnight. Think about it, when is your face most dewy & glowing? Hold onto that glow, girl! If wrapping your mind around this one is still a hurdle, consider a moisturizing toner instead of face wash. You’ll still feel refreshed while avoiding a total loss of benefits. 

Wear a mask:

This recommendation is as much for your hair as it is for your skin. I try to include a face mask every 1 to 2 weeks – like I said, not the most patient person, but it always leaves my skin feeling tighter and refreshed. I’m better at treating my hair. I have yet to find a natural hair mask I love, but my quick rescue option gets the job done. Try Pantene’s 3 Minute Miracle–  you’ll see immediate results. Also, quick gym trick: If your gym has a steam sauna, wash your hair before entering, lather it in conditioner, but skip the rinse (for now). After a relaxing steam, complete your shower. Having allowed for that extended heat conditioning will lock in moisture in a whole new way! 

Avoid unnecessary heat:

Fun fact, I don’t even own a hair dryer– probably another reason I like to shower at night. Don’t get me wrong, some days I crave the convenience of a quick blowout, but I’ve also noticed a significant change in the life of my hair since making this change. The difference in split ends alone is mind blowing! I still use a curling iron and flat iron, but again I try not to use it every day. Think style one day, then dry shampoo and updo the next. 

Exfoliate thoroughly, but not daily: 

This is a tough one for me, because I love a good scrub, but you can overdue it, making skin vulnerable to irritants & infections. Use a scrub to rid yourself of dry skin, but give yourself a break for a day or two after. This applies to both shower and face scrubs. When choosing a face scrub, invest a little more and opt for a fine grain scrub. I recently had an esthetician warn me that rough grain scrubs manipulate your pores making them larger over time. No thanks! As for body scrub, it doesn’t have to be fancy, just amazing, and there’s no better scrub than Frank Coffee Scrub. You can thank me later ;)

Rethink your make-up routine:

If you typically use powders, consider switching to tinted moisturizers or liquid foundations. There are also great cream blushes, highlighters, and lip stains available that will leave your skin feeling much softer throughout the day. 

Refresh:

Remember there’s nothing wrong with a quick refresh. I love a good face mist no matter the season! I’ve tried a lot of options in the past, and typically only refresh a couple times a day, but lately my favorites are Beauty Counter’s Brightening Mist & Herbivore's Rose Hibiscus Hydrating Mist. These are great options to carry in your gym bag or purse and can serve as a perfect moment of bliss in an otherwise chaotic day. 

Minimalist Nursery

If you follow on Instagram, you already know our goal is a simple yet chic nursery. For starters we live in a downtown high-rise, which we love, but often this means shopping not according to what we want, but what we have space for. 

Today, I'm opening up a bit of our registry and sharing how we're creating a minimalist nursery/home for Baby H.

To my surprise, nesting for us has meant more organization than anything else, and it's made for some creative space solutions I think you'll appreciate. 

As much as I love baby, I knew long ago that I didn't want our home cluttered with baby gear, and frankly I'm not so sure babies require as much as we accumulate– less is more...

 

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1. SMART SLEEPER:

No crib for now, we've opted for a sleek and compact bassinet, that comes with raving reviews! Not gonna lie, we're banking on SNOO's technology– customers boast similarities to a night nurse! It's not cheap, but if the videos are real, it's worth every penny in my book!

2. Table-top Changing Station:

No changing table either. As much as possible, I wanted to avoid adding any more furniture to our space, so we decided to go with a topper on an already existing dresser. We opted for Restoration Hardware's Layne Wide Dresser Topper, which will serve as the main storage station for all things baby related. 

3. Hatch Baby Grow:

For those who don't know, I'm kind of a clean freak, so a wipeable easy clean changing pad was a must. This one is slightly more luxurious as it comes with a built in scale to track baby's growth, but frankly it's the same price as it's non-tech alternative, so why not?

4. Wipe Warmer:

I hate being cold, so I can't imagine baby waking up to a cold diaper only to be followed by cold wet wipes. A wipe warmer seems like an easy way to keep baby comfortable, and after much research, Prince Lionheart's Evo warmer comes with the best reviews.

5. Dyson Humidifier:

This is where the clean freak in me geeks out. I know it's a splurge, but I'm a big fan of Dyson's technology & design, so I'm really hoping to get my hands on this one. With two dogs in the mix, we want to make sure we keep baby's environment both clean and safe. 

6. Dock-a-Tot:

I'm sure you've already seen this on every baby registry, and I asked around a lot before committing, but friends swear by Dock-a-Tot, and I love the idea of using it for multiple purposes including a portable play mat/sleeper.

7. Diaper Storage:

A few of you recommended a portable caddy– hence the handle storage basket. Both this and the additional wicker bin will make their home on baby's changing table for easy access during those late night diaper changes.  

8. Modern Baby Monitor:

We're foregoing the traditional baby monitor and opting for the Nest IQ which easily pairs with your smart phone. We've loved Nest products in the past, and are keen on the sleek design of this camera for baby's nursery. 

9. Storage, Storage, Storage:

Like I said, we've been hard at work creating more storage space. We have a walk-in closet, but it's already full without adding any baby gear, so we've added a stock-full of these lidded bins to keep things tidy on shelving. 

10. Unofficial Diaper Pail:

While we originally registered for the Ubbi diaper pail, we recently swapped that idea for a small Simplehuman step can. This decision surprised me too, but after chatting with a friend who's currently on her 4th baby, it's a trusted and far more budget friendly alternative. Well, that and odor fighting disposable diaper bags which I plan to order in bulk.

11. Aromatherapy:

I love filling our home with scents of vanilla, lavender, or sandlewood. Additionally, I hope these scents will help soothe baby, so I'm excited to add this diffuser to baby's nursery, though I still haven't decided on black or white. 

12. Snuggled Up:

Baby's enjoyed being tucked away most of this pregnancy, so I'm assuming a snug swaddle will be extremely handy. Also, if you couldn't already tell, we're keeping our color pallet super simple.

13. Minimal Shelving:

I found these stainless steel shelves for a steal, and we've recently added them above our coffee machine to make room for baby's feeding gear. Whether you're expecting or not, I highly recommend these for any modern kitchen. 

14. Baby Blankets:

I'll admit, this is when my minimalism fails me, and it's taking everything in me to avoid buying more baby blankets. There are so many cozy options out there, but again, those that fold down easily and pack well for travel win the race.

15. Pack & Go Bouncer

Still deciding on a bouncer, but the Bloom Coco Go is so simple and packable that it's quickly taking the lead. I love the idea of folding this down & tucking it away when not in use. 

16. MINIMALIST Baby:

Just because you're opting for minimalism, doesn't mean you have to skimp on the cute stuff! We're stocked on baby clothes, but this is of my favorites!

17. Trial & Error:

From what I've heard, bottles, like pacifiers will take time to narrow in on. Regardless, I only plan on keeping a few of these on hand. My favorites are the Breeza Glass bottles, and ComoTomo Natural Feel bottles. I have one kitchen rule: if it's not dishwasher safe, it's not necessary, and the same applies for baby gear. These bottles are both dishwasher safe and designed with a wider rim for easy cleaning. 

18. Easy Night Shifts:

While I've primarily opted for footed onsies (trying to avoid lost baby socks), many of you recommended sleeping gowns for easy nighttime diaper changes, and Nordstrom makes the softest ones I've found!

19 &20. Quick Cleaning:

While I've made sure all feeding gear is dishwasher safe, I realize that there will be times in which it's quicker to hand-wash bottles. Like I said, I don't want our home covered in baby gear, so these neutral white and grey drying accessories will blend well into our overall aesthetic.

21. Decorative Hamper:

I'll likely wash baby's clothes separately using Puretergent's X-tra Sensitive Formula, so I wanted a decorative hamper to enhance & not take away from our shared spaces. 

 

 

I'll be honest, maintaining to a minimalist aesthetic requires some work & a lot of research. Versatility is key, as is a neutral color scheme. I never wanted a big registry, and have worked tirelessly at making it as simple as possible.

What have been some of your nursery and space saving hacks?...

 

xoxo