Saturday, December 30, 2006

2006 (and my best meals of the year)

In honor of the new year, I wanted to celebrate the past year, which will now be our last official year as non-parents, with the photos, highlights and good food we had in 2006. I will be back on Monday with some New Year's Resolutions:

New Year's 2006:

January: I did not make any new year's resolutions for the first time in a long time.

February brought our amazing trip to London, Morocco and Iceland. Although we could not know it at the time, this was to be our last February international trip (a tradition we started in 2004 with our trip to Ireland, followed up by Paris in 2005). We had planned Turkey for 2007, but now it will have to wait a bit. We are embarking on a different kind of journey this Feb...Morocco was the site of the # 1 of my top 4 meals of the year when we had cous-cous made from scratch at the home of our host family. Diced lamb, sweet potatoes and other unidentifiables were mixed in. I can still remember the taste and texture and will never be able to make cous-cous from a box again.

At the Ice Bar, London:

In Djmaa El Fna, Marrakesh, Morocco:

Eating the couscous:


March was snow storms and my Dad's official 60th. I went to NYC for St. Patrick's Day to stay with K for a couple nights. This was the evening I #2 of my three best meals of the year (chicken mole enchiladas at Mexican Mama on the lower East Side). If anyone has a good recipe for this, feel free to share! I also stopped taking the pill this month.

April: We found out we were pregnant one weekend and spent the weekend crying and upset (we had not officially planned to "try" yet). The next week my period started. It was what the doctors call a "chemical pregnancy" (very early miscarriage). This was a mixed blessing for us as we spent that weekend working through so many "what-ifs." By the time May rolled around, we were ready.

May was Santa Fe for Dad's 60th and Vegas. My father's whole side of the family came out to NM to stay at a compound in Santa Fe for a few days. There was much good food in Santa Fe, some that came close to best meals of the year, but none that were so memorable I can still taste them (my criteria for my choices). But I did enjoy my last hurrah of some of the best top shelf tequila margaritas I have ever had. Sigh. Little S was conceived while we were in New Mexico, but I am assured the margaritas had already passed through my system. A couple weekends later we headed to Vegas with about 40 friends to celebrate a friend's birthday. R was furious at me for "not being any fun." Little did we know, just a few days later we would find out why I was so tired (and pale) and so turned off to drinking....

The compound Dad and E rented for his birthday:

Dad and Me:

Vegas (about 4 weeks pregnant):

June We headed to OH for a week to spread our news. We went all over and visited everyone we know in the state.

In July we celebrated my birthday in exactly the way I wanted--with a cookie cake and hot dogs and a long walk. Em and I went to Taste of Cambridge, which was quite the event for a prgger--56 different restaurants set up tasting sessions and we had VIP tickets so we could eat as much as we wanted. I ended up going back for seconds (and third and, actually fourths I think, too) on these Italian rice balls made of perfectly seasoned rice, lightly fried and covered in a spicy marinara. Later in the month we found out we were having a girl.

My cake:

August: I started feeling the baby move early this month (14 weeks). It was the most compelling thing I've ever experienced. And I am still not jaded to it. E (stepmom), M (sister) and I took a wonderful girl's weekend to Shelter Island off of Long Island. It was perfect. E and I walked for miles each day while M slept and then we had over the top, delicious dinners at two of the island's inns (the Ram's Head and Chequit) Chequit was the site of best meal of the year # 3--Filet Mignon and the best crab cakes I have ever tasted.

September: Dad and E closed on the lake house where they have decided little S will spend many weeks. My father told me the other day that she will likely "grow up there." We made our first visit shortly thereafter. R felt the baby kick for the first time on Sept. 1.

Dad at the lake house:

Oct: We went on an official date to Oleana where I had best meal #4. R had the lamb sausage and I had flounder with an asparagus souffle. We split grape leaves and this amazing feta/hot pepper spread. For dessert we had the best baked Alaska I've ever had. The next weekend we went to NYC to stay with K and visit R's brother. This was the site of my Liz Lange extravaganza ($20 for everything!). We also reunited with my cousin from Brooklyn whom I had not seen in years. The following weekend was R's "weekend of surprises" when a couple of his friends flew in from OH without his knowledge and we threw one huge halloween/birthday party to celebrate his 30th (I went as a pregnant Robert Palmer girl, but I was insanely close to squeezing myself into a secondhand wedding dress and going as "Like a Virgin.")

Nov: The election gave me hope that this is still a country worth fighing for. I went to a spa with E to get pampered, do a lot of yoga, take a lot of hikes and eat wonderful, healthy food. We also had Thanksgiving in Maine.

Dec: We spent Xmas in Maine and the last weekend before 2007 celebrating M's 21st! She will be in Italy on Jan. 17 (her actual birthday) so we are going to a winery to celebrate. Tomorrow night we are headed to our good friend Em and Kev's for a dinner party. I hope I make it to midnight!

We end this year in a place that I certainly did not expect last year. We are happy and thrilled and could not be more excited, but this was not exactly how we planned the year to go. The next year is going to bring changes and possibilities I have never experienced before. It is going to change both of us as people and as a couple. I can't say I feel completely prepared, but I do feel excited and ready for the challenge, so bring it on. 2007 is going to be amazing.

Happy New Year everyone!!!

1 comment:

Kristi said...

What a great post, and some amazing pictures. And that first one: yowsa! Hot mama!

We did a lot of traveling too, before getting pregnant, and I'm so glad we did, because it will be a long time before we're able to do it again.

2007 is going to bring an amazing change to your life. And I can't wait to read about it. I'm so glad you found my blog (and then I found yours!).

Happy New Year!