Happy Third Trimester to me!

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Today marks the beginning of the third trimester in Tiffany’s pregnancy. In some ways, I am so ready to meet her. And in other ways, I am glad she has a few months before she joins us. I think I would feel more ready if our furniture from Korea was in our current house. Soon enough. With about twelve weeks to go, the house will be ready in plenty of time for her arrival.

At Clarissa’s twenty week ultrasound, they had a few concerns. There was a small hole in her heart and she had a “bright bowel.” They had concerns about things like Down Syndrome and Cystic Fibrosis. This was terrifying for a first time mom, but the blessing in it was that they sent me to EVMS (the local medical school) for further testing and ultrasounds. I got to see extra clear pictures of Clarissa at 22 weeks and 28 weeks and then another set at 35 weeks. By 22 weeks, the heart in her heart had closed and by 28 weeks her bowels were fine. She just wasn’t “ready” at the earlier ultrasound times.

With Tiffany, the ultrasound schedule has been completely different. While we were in Korea, they did an ultrasound at every appointment. We have been looking at things like her brain, spine, and liver since the beginning. We left Korea at about 20 weeks so they didn’t get to my anatomy scan before we left. My only ultrasound at my American doctor was at 24 weeks and I had to ask for that since I missed the 20 week anatomy scan that most people get. Her ultrasound showed that everything was fine, so that was the only ultrasound my ob plans to do this pregnancy.

On the one hand, I was glad for this. Tiffany is healthy. There are no concerns. On the other hand, I was sad. I got to see clear pictures of Clarissa’s face all the time. And we still had not really seen a great picture of Tiffany’s face. We decided that we would go to a special place that specializes in 4d elective ultrasounds. We went to InfantSeeHD in Fairfax.

Maria, our ultrasound tech was wonderful! She was super excited to see our baby. She had me move around in different positions so that we could see more. Tiffany had one of her feet in her face pretty much the entire time, but Maria was able to move around so that we could see her whole face anyway. She also said that Tiffany already has a full head of hair. We also got to watch Tiffany practice sucking on the placenta.

I’m not going to lie. There was a little bit of sticker shock when we saw the price for the ultrasound packages. Because there were concerns with Clarissa, insurance paid for all of her extra ultrasounds so I had no concept about how much these things normally cost. But we did get a full video recording of the thirty minute session and 84 still images on a jump drive.

Then, I wanted to celebrate. So we decided to check out Happy Tart, a gluten free bakery, in Falls Church. We parked in the garage for Pearson Square and it was really easy to find. The prices were reasonable for gluten free treats. Cookies and macaroons were $1.75. Cupcakes were $4.50 each. They also had bags of English muffins and drinks for sale. Clarissa loved her cookie. Tim and I thought the cupcakes were delicious. We will definitely be back!

Then we finished our evening with dinner in Shirlington. Since it was my choice, I chose Guapo’s for a Mexican dinner. I pretty much always love my Mexican food. The impressive part was that Tim enjoyed his dinner too.

Chocolate Rice Krispy Treats

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Ingredients :
3 tablespoons earth balance butter
1  bag large marshmallows (10 ounces)
6 cups Rice Krispies cereal (gluten-free free brown rice in the yellow box is our favorite)
1/2 cup chocolate chips (I used vegan carob chips in the one pictured above)

Directions :
1. Melt butter in a large pot on low heat (will take about four minutes)
2. Add marshmallows and melt on low.  (It seems like it takes forever and it is about twenty minutes,  but trust me,  it’s worth it.  I have had to start over many times after burning my butter or marshmallows)
3. Spray 9×13 pan.
4. Add cereal to pot and mix thoroughly.
5. Turn off heat.
6. Add in chocolate chips and mix thoroughly.  (I suppose that true chocoholics could add more but I found that more than this makes the chocolate flavor a bit overwhelming.)
7. Pour into pan.
8. Use spatula to make even.
9. Let sit about an hour to set.  If you are in a hurry,  you can put it in the refrigerator about twenty minutes before cutting.

At all of the work pot lucks, his coworkers request that my husband brings these.  Apparently someone else attempted it once and ours are better 🙂

If you prefer,  you can use the normal rice krispy treat recipe.

Vegan lemon thins

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Ingredients :
2 tablespoons flax meal
6 tablespoons water
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup brown sugar
1 1/2 cups white rice flour
1 tablespoon lemon juice

Directions :
1. In a medium bowl,  mix flax meal and water.  Let sit for two minutes.  (you can use two eggs instead,  but then it won’t be vegan)
2. Add baking powder and lemon juice and stir. 
3. Mix in brown sugar and flour.
4. Spray cookie sheet.
5. Drop heaping spoonfuls of batter to form cookies. 
6. Cook at 325 degrees for 12 minutes.

Cookies are done when the edges start to brown.

Vegan lemon thins

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Ingredients :
2 tablespoons flax meal
6 tablespoons water
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup brown sugar
1 1/2 cups white rice flour
1 tablespoon lemon juice

Directions :
1. In a medium bowl,  mix flax meal and water.  Let sit for two minutes.  (you can use two eggs instead,  but then it won’t be vegan)
2. Add baking powder and lemon juice and stir. 
3. Mix in brown sugar and flour.
Note : mixture should be a little runny.  You can add a tablespoon or two of water if you need to.
4. Spray cookie sheet.
5. Drop heaping spoonfuls of batter to form cookies. 
6. Cook at 325 degrees for 12 minutes.

Cookies are done when the edges start to brown.

Chocolate chip cookies

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Ingredients :
1/3 cup earth balance butter
1/3 cup shortening
3/4 cup white rice flour
3/4 cup tapioca flour
1/2 cup garbanzo bean flour
1 teaspoon xanthan gum
1 egg
1/2 cup sugar
1  tablespoon soy milk
2  teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup chocolate chips

Directions :
1. In a large bowl,  cream sugar,  shortening,  and butter.
2. Mix egg,  soy milk,  and vanilla to bowl.
3. Add flour,  xanthan gum,  and baking powder to bowl.
4. Mix in chocolate chips.
5.  Form dough into meatball sized balls  and flatten onto cookie sheet.
6.  Cook at 375 for 12 minutes.

Makes 22 cookies.

Note : You can use butter and shortening interchangeably in this recipe. I have made the recipe with all shortening or all butter. Both taste great.

This post contains affiliate links.

Carob cookies

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Ingredients :
3/4 cup white rice flour
3/4 cup Garbanzo Bean Flour
3/4 cup tapioca flour
3/4 teaspoon xanthan gum
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup shortening
1/2 cup earth balance butter
1 cup sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 eggs
1/4 cup Carob Powder

Directions :
1. In a large bowl,  mix white rice flour,  garbanzo bean flour,  tapioca flour,  xanthan gum,  baking soda,  and sugar.
2. Add butter,  shortening,  vanilla,  and eggs and mix thoroughly.
3. Add carob powder to dough and mix thoroughly.
5. Form dough into meatball sized balls and flatten into cookies on cookie sheet.
6. Bake at 350 degrees for 12 minutes.

Makes about 25 cookies

Note : If you would rather make sugar cookies, just take out the carob. I have also used this recipe to make both vanilla sugar cookies and carob cookies with the same dough (pictured above). If you want to make them together, then stop at step 2. Use half of dough to make sugar cookies. Then, you will only need 2 tablespoons of carob powder. Bake time will be the same.

This post contains affiliate links.

Tapioca Pudding

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Ingredients :
1 egg
6 tablespoons honey
1/2 cup Tapioca Pearls
2 cups soy milk
1 teaspoon vanilla

Directions :
1. Mix egg,  tapioca pearls,  3 tablespoons honey,  and milk in saucepan.
3. Let set for five minutes.
4. Put on medium heat.  Bring to a boil for one minute. 
Note : It comes out smoother if you stir the entire time the heat is on.
5. Add 3 tablespoons honey and vanilla to saucepan and stir.
6. Remove from heat.
7. Cool 20 minutes before serving.