I have decided that, instead of the usual “nesting” that occurs during the end stages of pregnancy, I am nesting in an entirely new way. I am not interested in laundry, or ridding my home of all germs. I have had no desire to work on the baby’s nursery, nor a desire to spend time readying the house for the new baby. Technically, I have 10 weeks before Baby2 makes her debut, provided she doesn’t pull a stunt like her older brother – if that is the case, I have 6 weeks.
Much of this pregnancy has been avoiding getting sick – people ask what I am craving, and I can honestly say I have had very few cravings. Aside from chili and apple crisp in the heat of the summer, I haven’t had too many cravings. And, when I make whatever it is I am making, by the time I have finished the act of cooking or baking it, I have satiated my “cravings,” and can only stomach a few bites. Given the cravings of chili and apple crisp, I determined what I truly was craving, was the season of fall – not the actual food. Just warm comfort food.
Early in the pregnancy, I found out several types of my favorite food give me heartburn – Mexican food is, more or less, off limits. Papa John’s pizza gives me heartburn, but Dominos and Pizza Hut are safe. Technically, even though I kick myself after eating it, Chinese food also gives me heartburn – but, there are some days where it just sounds so very good, and doesn’t require much effort on my part.
I have determined that, instead of readying my house and home for the baby, my nesting has taken a different course – cultivating my culinary skills. When I cook whatever meal I am in the mood for, I typically don’t suffer from any heartburn. I have found if I cook Mexican food, I can eat it without suffering from any side effects afterward. And, since I don’t like playing, “guess whether or not I’m going to get heartburn” every time I eat out, I’ve just spent time cooking the recipes from the safe confines of my kitchen.
The nutritionist I am working with during my pregnancy gives me constant reminders to, “keep your sodium intake to a minimum.” Given my history with pre-eclampsia, I also am able to watch how much sodium is put into my system when I am cooking from scratch. Thankfully, I don’t have to change too many habits in that area of cooking because growing up, we only added salt to one dish that I can recall – mashed potatoes.
I’m not saying I’m completely, 100% from-scratch cooking. I still have days where I consume perhaps the entire week’s worth of sodium in one meal – usually when we order pizza. However, I am saying I am enjoying this new endeavor of making my favorite dishes from scratch. I don’t make noodles from scratch, nor am I currently making my mashed potatoes from scratch. But, everything else is cooked pretty much from scratch. I also don’t make some of my sauces from scratch, either – but, I make sure to buy a lower-sodium version of sauce or soups to continue to reduce the sodium intake.
Here are a few examples of what has been cooked this pregnancy, usually on a whim of whatever Baby2 has decided she would like to eat:
I have also made Shepherd’s pie, which following the recipe, had too much thyme or rosemary for my taste; that is definitely one I will be trying again, minus as much spice for which the recipe calls. It’s another Google recipe.
Homemade chocolate chip cookies, or chocolate-chip-butterscotch cookies have become a favorite family recipe – when I make those cookies, I omit the salt in the recipe. They still taste mighty fine to me!
Overall, our diet before pregnancy consisted of chicken, whole wheat noodles, fruits and vegetables. We did a lot of eating out, but the more I have found myself cooking, the less tolerance Soldier Boy or I have for the sodium that comes from eating at restaurants.
Here’s to a happier, healthier end of my pregnancy this go-around, even if the doctors and nutritionists don’t believe I am watching sodium intake!