23 Weeks: Direction Babymoon!

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Since NYC has become an icebox in the past few days and because the 3rd trimester is looming on the horizon and promising to be quite a rollercoaster with discomfort making its big comeback and a long list of preparations in anticipation for the big baby # 2 day, it was time for one last sunny Hooray! Hello Babymoon!

My Babymoon Planning Checklist:

• Consult with OB prior to booking to make sure it is safe to travel and because some destinations require prior vaccination

• Timing: 2nd trimester (week 18 to 24) is the safest time for pregnant women to travel

• Destination:

– Would like South Africa but need relaxation more than adventure at the moment so –> any amazing beach

– Short travel time is ideal but will not compromise on the beach

– Somewhere with good medical facilities

Result: Hawaii (I know I’m pushing it a bit with the 11hour flight time!)

On the plane:

• Wear compression socks, comfortable clothes and layers to account for the various temperatures during transit

• Keep feet elevated if possible and don’t cross legs to help prevent leg swelling

• Get up and walk around every hour or so to aid blood circulation

• Keep hydrated

My Beach Packing List (I’ll only share the essentials here…I’m not a light packer!):

• Don’t forget the prenatal vitamins

• Plenty of sunscreen to avoid dark pregnancy patches in the sun

• Hand gel sanitizer and sanitizing wipes

• Fill iPhone with the latest hit tunes and delete all pictures to make space for new ones

• Lots of bikinis

• Jelly sandals

• Light flowy clothes

• Sunnies

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Inside my travel bag

Bean Medley

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Trying to get off the holidays’ rush, lack of structure and overindulgence wave and finding it a bit overwhelming to get back to your normal routine? Well, me too!

I usually like to take it easy the couple of days after the holidays, so I make sure to have a smooth transition into my usual routine to avoid post-holidays blues. At the same time however, I try not to stall too much in getting my family back onto its normal schedule.

My first fix is a healthy, cleansing and simple meal. By simple I mean no trip to the grocery store and only minimal preparation. So I dig into my pantry and I make the best out of it. Here’s a recipe that helps put me back in a supreme state of mind, ready to hit all my to dos for the rest of the week!

 “Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.” Roosevelt

Bean Medley (or Makhlouta) is a soup gathering the essential groups of food, making it a complete meal with nutrient-rich ingredients, mainly a fiber mine! It’s simply a mixture of 4 or 5 types of beans (white beans, kidney beans, lentils, chick peas and black eyed peas), grains (bulgur or wheat and rice), onion, a bit of olive oil or canola oil and spices. You can make your own mixture, depending on what you find in your pantry.

Here’s my recipe for 6 servings

  • ½ cup large white beans
  • ½ cup black eyed peas
  • ½ cup lentils
  • ½ cup chickpeas
  • ½ cup bulgur
  • ½ cup rice
  • 8 cups water
  • 1 finely chopped onion
  • 4 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 Tbsp canola oil
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp salt
  1. If you’re using dried beans, soak them separately in water overnight (except lentils)
  2. In a pot, heat the canola oil, add the onion and stir fry until browned
  3. Add the rest of the ingredients (except the lemon juice) and let them cook on medium heat for 30-45 minutes or until the beans are tender
  4. Add the lemon juice and let it cook on low heat for 5 minutes
  5. Serve hot (This soup is thick as the grains absorb most of the added water)