Yesterday, we celebrated our oldest boy’s birthday. Fourteen years. Fourteen years of being a mother.
I remember so clearly the day we brought him home from the hospital. We carefully loaded him in the car seat, and my husband cautiously driving home. A home, that was no longer ours, but now his too.
Unpacking, we folded and put away gifts in the room that had long awaited his arrival. The yellow rocker, that my own mother used to rock my brother and I, waited patiently in the corner for a chance with our newest family member.
We ate supper early that evening. The adrenaline of the birth and hospital stay fading in the quiet backdrop of our comfortable surroundings. Familiarity in all of the new. As I changed my strawberry blonde babe into a sleeper for the night I was so in awe of him. This little person that was a little of me, a little of my husband and a lot himself. Someone we knew, but had so much to become acquainted with.
After bathing and changing him, we settled our babe into his swing for a few moments. As we stepped back to admire the fact that it took two of us to successfully figure it out, my husband looked at me and said, ‘Now what?’
It was as if he had read my mind. Now what? I had read all the books and thought I would know, but as my baby slept quietly in the swing, I didn’t really have the answer. Sure, I could feed him, change him, soothe him when he needed it. Beyond that? Well, I just hoped to be the mother that he needed me to be.
Fourteen years later, we’re still feeding him, comforting him when he’s upset, and every now and then still asking, ‘now what?’ Motherhood is funny that way.
Today, myself and several other bloggers are throwing a virtual baby shower for Erin, of Naturally Ella fame. She’s expecting the arrival of her own firstborn son, in just a few short weeks. To take the struggle out of meal time, we’ve put together easy recipes to make those early days of motherhood a bit easier.
My contribution, a Chickpea Greek Salad, comes together quickly, and can be used in a variety of ways. Stuffed into a pita, as a lettuce wrap, or simply eaten out of a bowl.
- 1 (25 oz) can of chickpeas, rinsed and drained
- 1/2 cup roasted red bell pepper, chopped
- 1/2 cup banana peppers, roughly chopped
- 2-3 green onions, both green and white chopped
- 15 grape tomatoes, halved
- 1/3 cup pitted kalamata olives, roughly chopped
- 1 cucumber, sliced and quartered
- 8 oz feta cheese, crumbled or cut into 1/2 inch cubes
- 1 teaspoon dried dill (optional)
- For the dressing:
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon honey
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- Place all salad ingredients into a large bowl and toss to combine.
- In a small mason jar, mix together olive oil, white wine vinegar and honey.
- Cover with lid and shake until ingredients are well combined.
- Pour onto salad and toss again.
- Salt and pepper to taste.
- Serve immediately, or store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
Be sure to check out all the wonderful recipes contributed…and wish Erin well on the arrival of her baby boy!
The Fauxmartha | A Pasta Dish for Busy Hands
A Couple Cooks | Breakfast Parfait with Roasted Strawberries
Edible Perspective | Avocado Pesto Chickpea Salad Sandwiches
Eat This Poem | Penne with Cherry Tomatoes and Arugula
Cookie and Kate | Brussels Sprouts Pizza
FoodieCrush | Beet, Avocado and Fried Goat Cheese Salad
The Bojon Gourmet | Tempeh BLTs with Avocado + Chipotle Mayonnaise
Girl Versus Dough | Spiced Lentils with Poached Eggs
Dolly and Oatmeal | Chickpea Bean Bowl with Toasted Bread Crumbs and Dill Tahini
Food Loves Writing | Erin’s Veggie Burgers
With Food + Love | Creamy Polenta with Crispy Beets
London Bakes | Ricotta Gnocchi with Wild Garlic and Pistachio Pesto
Flourishing Foodie | Glazed Tofu with Ramen
This Homemade Life | Chickpea Greek Salad
My Name is Yeh | Creamed Spinach
Brooklyn Summer | One-Pot Pasta Primavera