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Old 04-30-2005, 10:07 PM   #11
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For my sisters I took a big basket and made up my personal red sauce (hey we all have our own recipe, don't we?), which I put in tupperware or other freeze-able containers. Then, in the basket, I put different kinds of pasta, some grated parm, loaf of bread, etc ... all the trimmings for several Italian meals.

Although I'm not sending specific recipes, most of the following meals freeze well:

Curries
Home made soups that DO NOT have pasta in them
Stews
Savory pies (quiche, tourtiere). Cut into wedges before freezing so they can nuke individual servings.
Chili -- don't forget green chili, vegetarian chili, bean chili, Cincinatti chili. There are many versions, all are good and different.
Meat loaf -- slice before freezing, so that a slice can be nuked for a sandwich
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Old 07-22-2005, 10:31 AM   #12
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Not really a recipe but here is some advise I was given that really worked out when my daughter was new born.

Do not be quiet. Let your baby get used to noise, and they will. My daughter would sleep through anything. Nothing worse than having to tip toe around the house when you may only have a few hours to yourself.

Frozen Bagels: For teething, because they are not teething they are serious (joke). This was a little messy but she never complained. The cold bagel felt good on her gums and she could never chew off enough to be of any concern.

Never teach them to walk. They will tear up all your stuff - just kidding.

The noise and bagel advise was noticeably working when we where hanging out with other new parents and how surprised they where to not have to be quiet when she was napping.

Also buy a food processor, make your own baby food. No need for preservatives in your baby. You will only get out of your kid what you put in them. Besides leading by example and a lot of love and attention these simple suggestions helped me.

I remember making spinach lasagna, manicotti, soups or stews and freezing it in single servings as well to aid in acquiring more quality time. I could dig up some recipes if you are interested.

Enjoy,
Bryan
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Old 07-22-2005, 10:45 AM   #13
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Ruth, welcome back! The fresh fruit idea is very welcome, also the dried fruit thing. Buy the big bag of trail mix at Costco/Sam's Club. New moms need that stuff!

I would recommend lots of muffins or little loaves of things for quick nutritious breakfasts or easy grab snacks during the day.

The other thing that I really loved when I was a brand new mom was a ham dinner that my Mom delivered. She brought over scalloped potatoes and a whole ham. THAT went a long way. You can use a ham in so many ways. It was by far the most helpful thing going.

I would also like to echo the buttering up the nurses idea. We always took a tin of cookies/chocolate to the nurses station and thanked them for their wonderful care of _____.
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Old 07-22-2005, 11:29 AM   #14
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This is such a wonderful idea! I would go with casseroles, stews and pasta sauces - all freeze well, and you can add boxes of rice, pasta and cous-cous to complete the gift. You can make most dishes more healthy by increasing the amount and variety of veggies in them, and choosing good quality, lean meat. Use lower-fat versions of dairy products, add some pulses (like lentils, beans) for extra fibre & protein. As a new Mum, she will need lots of protein to allow her body to heal quickly and for forming breastmilk. She will also need to increase her fibre intake.

I agree totally with Bryan's advice about making lots of noise - I could (and still can) vacuum around my daughter's beds without waking them up because I got them used to noise when they were babies! It can backfire though - my sister-in-law took my advice and when her daughter was a baby, she couldn't actually get to sleep unless the vacuum was running, my SiL burnt out 3 vacuums by the time she was 2....

Another really useful bit of advice is for her to treat night-time as night-time right from day 1....that means that when baby wakes for a night-feed, she doesn't switch the light on, doesn't talk much to baby, doesn't play with the baby - just gets on and feeds, quick & boring as possible, then back down to sleep. When baby want's feeding during the day, then that's the time to play etc., by using this method, both mine were sleeping through by 8 weeks. They soon get the idea that night-time is 'different'.

I would suggest that she buy a pressure cooker to make her own baby foods - you can pop in chopped veggies and some meat & make wonderful nutritious casseroles quickly (the pressure cooking helps 'seal' in both flavour and nutrients, as well as destroying bacteria effectively, so the food keeps well). For convenience, she can use salt-free frozen veggies, which are just as nutritious as fresh (actually, even more so, as 'fresh' veggies often are not that fresh by the time they get to the store...). She can make it in bulk, puree it in a blender and freeze small portions. She shouldn't add salt, or salty stocks as it's not good for baby, but she can use herbs.

Best wishes, Paint.
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Old 07-22-2005, 02:10 PM   #15
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Here is a great recipe for Chicken Pot Pie (bknox can vouch for me). I'm 19 weeks pregnant and will be making one to stick in our freezer, once we get closer to the due date. Good luck!

Chicken Pot Pie
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Old 07-22-2005, 10:00 PM   #16
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Yep, It's a keeper.

Corazon90, My wife is 21 weeks along and I may have to do the same.

Bryan
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Old 07-22-2005, 10:58 PM   #17
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Welcome back Ruth!

For a "recipe" ... just think of anything that is nutritional. I do differ from the new thinking at the La Leche League .... I would suggest going easy on "spicy" food for the first 3-months and then work them in gradually ... unless you enjoy spending all night up with a colicky baby.

Yep - did notice you said she would be breastfeeding ...
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Old 07-23-2005, 07:41 AM   #18
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Cracked up a bknox comments. A few friends have given birth in the past year, and I keep my mouth shut because I don't have kids. But occaisionally something comes out that cracks me up. I didn't have kids because I had younger sibs and -- love them dearly -- I knew what work it was. Decided to be lazy and skip kids. When a young friend had her baby, she was like me -- the eldest who spent a lot of time diapering, etc. When her husband (inexperienced with babies) was pushing and wishing for their baby to walk and talk, she replied, "hey, enjoy this stage while you have it!! Once she can walk, you have no idea what trouble she'll be able to get into." I don't mean to imply that you should hold your baby back, just enjoy what you have while you've got it!
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Old 07-23-2005, 12:08 PM   #19
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lots of soups freeze well. meat loaf does, but freeze it in portions so it all doesn't have to be defrosted at once. baked beans freese well with or without hotdogs or sausage.

spaghetti sause in 2 or 3 cup portions is quick and easy. etc
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Old 07-23-2005, 05:37 PM   #20
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These are some of my families favorite one-dish meals. I also think of a pot homemade chicken noodle soup for lunches, and a breakfast casserole of some sort, both divided into small portions.
When I was breast-feeding, we were given strict dietary limitations, like no garlic or onions, as they supposedly made the milk "taste bad", but my daughter was allowed to eat whatever she wanted, and she didn't have any problems at all.
************

Sausage and noodles

This is one of the meals my kids grew up on. I have made adjustments to pare down the calories, but it's still just as good...and still cheap to make. It's a huge recipe, because I usually freeze some in a ziplock, and send my daughter and her family a bowl. You can easily cut it in half.

2 lb. bulk pork sausage (or turkey sausage)
1 lb wide egg noodles
2 cans low-fat cream of mushroom soup+ milk called for on can
1 can mushrooms
1/4 cup fresh chopped parsley (opt)
salt & pepper to taste, easy on the salt
1/2 lb Velveeta Lite cheese cut into 1/4" slices
paprika

Cook meat till done in skillet or micro-wave. Cook the noodles in boiling water to al dente. (do not overcook, as they will continue to cook in mixture.)
Drain cooked meat in colander. Pour pasta and mushrooms over the top and drain well...I think doing it this way helps wash off part of the greaase.
Dump into large bowl and mix with soups and seasonings. Spread out into baking dish, cover generously with sliced Velveeta, sprinkle with paprika, and bake, covered, in the oven at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or more as needed. When hot and bubbly, take off the cover and let the top brown a few minutes.

I usually serve this with braised broccoli, then mix it all together the next night. You can cook the broccoli in with the pasta, and do it that way from the start.
**********************

Texas More
Another thrifty and family friendly recipe...
And another huge batch for sharing and freezing.

Ingredients:
1-1/2 lb ground chuck (could be half Italian Sausage)
1 lb elbow macaroni
1 can whole kernal corn
1 can mushrooms
1 can diced tomatoes + Juice
2 cups jarred spaghetti sauce (save your homemade for something more elegant)
1 tsp granulated garlic, (jarred or fresh is great...to your taste)
salt & pepper to taste
1/2 lb Velveeta cheese, sliced 1/4" thick

Directions"
Crumble meat and cook in skillet or microwave until pink is gone.
In the meantime, cook pasta in boiling water till al dente.
Drain meat in colander, mashing with spoon to get out grease. Dump corn and mushroooms over the top, then drain the pasta on top of that.
Combine in large bowl (washtub?) and combine with remaining ingredients except cheese. Mixture should be juicey...add a small can of tomato sauce if needed.
Turn into sprayed casserole, top generously with cheese, and sprinkle with paprika. (sliced green or black olives are also good on top.)
Bake in oven, covered, at 350 until warm and bubbly. Remove cover to let brown a few minutes, then remove from the oven and let stand for 5 minutes.

*Notes and variations*

Make it Mexican by deleting the mushrooms and adding a can of Bush's Chili Beans with juice. Add 1 tsp cumin and a substitue Rotel tomatoes for the plain ones.

Substitute any firm pasta for the elbows. Rotini and Penne are great like this.
******************

C's Rice-a-Roni Casserole

In a large deep skillet, saute the rice vermicelli mix, replacing butter
with olive oil, until lightly browned. Add seasoning mix and liquid called
for. Add Add 1-1/2 to 2 cups cooked chicken, beef, turkey or pork. Let cook
according to directions until about half done. Add fresh, frozen or canned
vegetables, cover, and continue to cook until all is tender.

Examples:

chicken flavored Rice-a-roni
cooked chicken, chopped into bite size pieces
1 can mushrooms, drained (use liquid as part of water called for)
2 cups fresh broccoli florets
OR 1 cup frozen peas
***
chicken flavored Rice mix
cooked pork, chopped into bite size pieces
1 can mushrooms, drained
1 16 oz package frozen stir-fry vegetables
soy sauce to taste
***
Beef flavored Rice mix
cooked beef, sliced thin
1 can mushrooms, sliced
1 can green beans, drained
baby carrots

The combinations are only limited by your imagination. If you don't have any pre-cooked meat, quickly brown lightly seasoned boneless chicken breasts , cubed boneless pork loin, or thin sliced beef sirloin in a couple of tbls olive oil before you add the rice/vermicelli mixture. It will finish cooking and get very tender by the time rice is done.
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