about me

    Emily Malone

    culinary arts grad. nutrition facts lover. vegetarian chef. marathon runner. country music maniac. failed dog trainer. barre fanatic. loving mama.

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    EmilyBMalone@gmail.com

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    A Look Back.



The Mondays.

Usually I sit down on Sunday nights or Monday mornings, excited to edit all my photos and share whatever fun adventures we had that weekend.  But not this weekend – it was pretty much a bust.

It started off strong – a delicious homemade dinner and a movie night with Casey.  This is my most recent obsession – creamy polenta bowls topped with roasted squash, cheesy kale chips, and sautéed mushrooms.  Can’t get enough.

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But the rest of the weekend was pretty lame.  We spent Saturday waiting around for Cullen to take a nap that never happened, and then Casey ended up having to work all day Sunday.

Sunday was a really hard day, and I’m not quite sure why.  I was in a horrible mood.  The weather was rainy and gross.  I was frustrated that Casey had to spend the whole day in the office.  I bought a new ball for Cullen and Huey popped it an hour later.  Cullen took one 40 minute nap.  My Brussels sprouts got overcooked for dinner and ended up tasting like mush.  Just one of those days, I guess.

Casey took a break around bath time, so he could spend a bit of time with Cullen before bed.  We’d been talking for a while about how out of control Cullen’s hair had gotten.  The mullet was cute for a while, but it was starting to go too far.  But I didn’t want to pay $30 for an overpriced kid’s cut when all he really needed was a small trim.

With his hair wet and combed, I grabbed a pair of kitchen shears and very carefully trimmed off the long pieces in the back.  It was impossible to get him to stay still, so it was a pretty rough chop job.  I didn’t want to give him a legit haircut – just get rid of the extra long pieces in the back.

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As soon as I did it, I regretted it.  But as it dried, it grew on me.  Crazy how different he looks with just a few locks of hair missing.  He still has all his wispy curls and loose pieces in the front…

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But the back is short and boyish, and he looks like a total toddler now.  And now there is a small pile of baby hair on my bathroom counter and I don’t know what to do with it.  I can’t bring myself to sweep it into the trash can.  And with that, I have officially become my mother.

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My sidekick kicked off our Monday at 5:30am.  We enjoyed a very early breakfast together. 

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I’m gearing up for a long week ahead.  Casey is bogged down with work this week, so he’s out of commission and it’s just me with Cullen – sun up to sun down.  The pups have been following me around and keeping me company.

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The biggest challenge these days is Cullen’s napping, or lack thereof.  Basically, he’s not doing it.  He went from napping 3-4 hours each day, to suddenly not napping at all.  I thought he was dropping down to just one nap (from two), but now it seems like he just doesn’t want to nap at all.  It is exhausting (for both of us!), and it makes the days feel very looooong.

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It is also making it virtually impossible to get anything done before 7:30pm.  I’m sad that I have all these really great Thanksgiving recipe ideas swirling around my head, and I haven’t been able to bring them to life for you.  I’m still hopeful that I might be able to squeak out a few at the end of the week.

Since we were going strong from 5:30am to 7:30pm today, I had to work hard to keep everyone entertained and happy.  Cullen and I did story time with friends this morning.  Once it became very clear no afternoon nap was happening, we leashed up the pups and covered 3-4 miles in the neighborhood.  It has taken me almost a full year to figure out how to successfully walk both dogs with Cullen, but we’ve finally got it.

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One funny tidbit about our walk – as we looped around, I waved hello as we walked past a man getting into a big truck.  A minute or two later, the truck pulled up next to us, and I saw the side of the truck said something like “The Steak Man.”  He very kindly asked if we knew what we were having for dinner yet, and asked if I’d like one of his (extra) steaks.  I thanked him and told him we were vegetarians.  What are the chances?  I felt bad.  It was a very nice offer.  We continued on and stopped to say hi to our favorite neighbor.

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And enjoyed the gorgeous views of downtown Seattle and Lake Washington along our route.  Whenever I am in a bad mood, a refreshing walk with this view turns it right around.  I feel so lucky to live somewhere so beautiful!

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By 4pm I thought I was going to lose it, and Cullen was reaching new levels of grumpiness.  I thought letting him stretch his legs would help, since he hates being forced into the stroller.

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I grabbed my camera and followed him around the playground – click, click, click.

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Fresh air always cheers him up, and cute baby pictures do it for me.  Check out those CHEEKS.  Such a little stinker.

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Eventually, dinner time and bedtime came, and here I am finally sitting down at my computer..  I apologize that this is basically just a self-indulgent rant with no purpose.  It happens.  It’s Monday.  On Tuesdays, I have some childcare help, so I’m hoping to get you part two of that postpartum update

To end on a brighter note, I’m currently camped out on the couch with a snoozing pup on either side of me, a fire warming the room, and a big mug of this warming my belly.

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Hot chocolate with cayenne pepper?  Yes, please.  Hope your week is off to a good start!

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109 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Sana     at 11:16 pm

Aw, take care Emily- glad you get some help tomm!

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Michelle@PeachyPalate     at 12:24 am

Feel free to rant! We all have those days/weekends and sometimes we just need a good rant! As always you managed to take amazing pics of Cullen, he’s so cute, so there is a massive plus, and I’m also now dying to try your new polenta bowl obsession! :) Hope your week goes better for you!

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Charlie (the runner beans)     at 1:24 am

We all have days like this, and having a rant almost always makes it feel better. I hope your week improves!!

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Carolina     at 2:35 am

I truly enjoy reading your blog on a regular basis, for the stories on life with Cullen, your recipes and your adventures in Seattle or elsewhere. As a mom of a girl, 11 weeks shy of a year, it’s also reassuring to read how you make it through and overcome tough days. The best thing is that you seem to always come around and reflect on a positive note…that’s comforting! Hope you have a wonderful rest of the week.

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Leatitia     at 3:23 am

Baby’s first haircut! I still have Damien’s hair in an envelope, welcome to the wagon.

Here’s to hopefully better week of naps. *high five* Those naps are key to keeping mamma’s sane, aren’t they?

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Ashley M. [at] (never home)maker     at 3:25 am

Emily, I swear I could have written this post myself. Stephen had the day off yesterday, so we were going to try to get the house clean and do a bunch of stuff we need to do for Ada’s birthday. Well, report cards are due at school — so Stephen spent most of the day glued to his work while I tried cleaning as Ada just cried and cried and wouldn’t take naps. Do you think Cullen might be getting his molars? Usually I roll my eyes when people say “oh, she’s teething” — so I guess now I’m one of those moms. BUT Ada is sleeping very well through the night, but her naps are AWFUL, and . . . yet again yesterday . . . I notice another molar peeking through the back of her gums. I mean, she already has one, but when she got the first, she had all these horrible napping and cranky days, too. Just know that you’ve got an East Coast friend totally in the same boat. Here’s to a better day! And if not, you and I both seem to do what we can at making the best of it.

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Emily Malone Reply:

Bleeeeeh, the working on the weekend SUCKS. Especially when you don’t expect it. I think that’s what really threw me off. I wasn’t mentally prepared to be doing the day alone, as I am during the week. And I don’t know why I didn’t just say this in the post, but Casey is actually in Dallas this week, so I’m ALONE alone. Like no one coming home at ALL. It blows. He’s traveling a lot more these days, and it’s hard. No idea on the teething. Lots of drool but still no sign of molars actually poking through. I keep feeling around for them! And same here on the sleep – goes down so easily for bedtime and sleeps great at night, but the days are a mess. What are we doing? Haha. I feel like I have a newborn again.

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Wendi Reply:

Can you go with Casey sometimes? I know it is not feasible to always do, but what a break it would be for you and Cullen. think of all of the new places you could explore andtake in while Casey is at work. This way, you would all win. I am sure it is just as hard on Casey to be away so long. Cullen seems to be an excellent traveler!

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Veganlily     at 4:02 am

You’re doing great-we ALL have those days (or weekends). I’m glad you have child care help-maybe you need some more of that more often when Casey is so busy for some non-mama time? Just a thought…hope the week gets better.

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Sarah     at 4:22 am

Thank you for being real! … In my mind you are super mom, super chef, super wife, super athlete, super advocate, super friend etc :). I appreciate your honesty, but hope today is a better one!

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Emily Malone Reply:

Oh haha, I am far from all of those things, but I do my best. Thank YOU!

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Jane     at 4:29 am

Put the hair in an envelope and put it in his baby book!!

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Brittnie (A Joy Renewed)     at 4:41 am

I think all of us mommas can relate to this post. Just one of those days! You are an amazing mom and it is quite obvious that your little guy is thriving – you can see it in that smile!

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Amanda     at 4:57 am

I totally get it! I have been at the “losing it” point for several long days now, the Husband also had to work all weekend including an overnight on Sunday leaving me with two babies! There are no words really that can properly describe that situation, especially when the little on is teething. So, you are not alone :)

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Emily Malone Reply:

Yeah, Casey is actually out of town. Don’t know why I didn’t just say that. Pulling solo mom duty is tough! Hope your week is going okay as well.

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jaime     at 5:06 am

I literally was just telling a friend (yesterday) how I wish I knew you in life & could call you up or have you over! Your words mimic my experience the first year with my son & I often read your recipes while rocking him just dreaming of the days I could actually make them & workout!!! It will come soon! The second year is faster & he will nap again,,, I’m on my second little one now so we are back to just admiring recipes but I have to say the quick ideas at the beginning of a post are a great way to make an overwhelming idea seem realistic & even though we don’t love kale chips here, I’m tempted to mock your style!! Thanks girl!! Jaime :)

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Emily Malone Reply:

Aww haha, I wish I could come over too! :) Laughing about admiring recipes. I cook them in my head all the time. Only about 10% actually make it onto our plates. :)

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Rachel (Two Healthy Plates)     at 5:07 am

Yeah, I know about some Mondays. Thank you for being so open in your post! Tomorrow is always a new day =)

PS that white cap on Cullen is tooooo stinkin’ cute!!

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Jessica     at 5:34 am

I hope your Tuesday is better than Monday! These are some of the most beautiful pics of Cullen, yet!

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Whitney     at 5:46 am

I am exhausted just reading this! Hope it gets better for you!

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Katiemac     at 5:51 am

You’re doing a great job!

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Katiemac Reply:

(Sometimes you just need to hear that)

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Emily Malone Reply:

Thank you Katie! :)

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nicole     at 6:12 am

I am so glad i was not the only one who had a weekend like that! Cullen looks soooo adorable. He seriously keeps getting cuter! I found naps after one eere so difficuly and many days nonexistent. Prepare for the tantrums. The biting. The hitting. The total embarrasement and thinking your kid is the only one acting out. Make sure you and Casey are on the page in regards to discipline. My parenting course explained this all happens because they can not talk and it is the only way they can voice their frustrations. I wish i had bettercprepared myself for what was to come after one so i just wanted to put a little bug in your ear. Goodluck. You are a great mom. Love your blog and how real you are!!

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Emily Malone Reply:

I am so afraid of the tantrums!

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Annie     at 6:20 am

Days like that are the worst! Hope things get better. My little girl stopped napping for a couple weeks shortly after she turned one. If I might offer some advice-try laying him down right after he eats lunch. Full bellies make for tired toddlers (and adults) so sometimes that helps.Either way, you’re doing a great job!! Love your blog!

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Mary Beth     at 6:53 am

Hang in there, Mama! You’re doing a great job. I remember that switch to one nap with all three of my kids. You might consider letting Cullen having a little ‘downtime’ in his room/crib mid-morning, he may catnap or just play a little, but I found that this seemed to help my kids be prepped for an afternoon nap. As crazy as it sounds, sometimes not napping makes napping even harder (the whole ‘sleep begets sleep’ argument.) He is such a cutie!

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Emily Malone Reply:

We’ve been doing the downtime in the morning, which is when I shower and get ready. It definitely helps, at least for my sanity and hygiene. :)

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EmilyC     at 6:56 am

Hang in there wrt the napping. It will come. When my son was dropping his nap, he did the exact same thing – went from 2 good naps to one really crappy one. I don’t know if you’ve ever tried it, it’s something I’ve done for all 3 of mine at some point in their napping “careers”: upon their waking up after the dreaded 40 min sleep cycle or even 1h 20 min, I’ve walked into their room, laid them down in their crib, and said very plainly, “naptime’s not over, let’s go back to sleep”. Of course they don’t like it and cry, but sometimes the fussing is only for a few min after which the go back to sleep for another whole hour or so! I think when they’re transitioning, they’re so tired that they sleep worse if that makes any sense. Anyway he eventually went from 40 min to 2.5 + hours so there is hope. Take care, Emily

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Emily Malone Reply:

Gives me hope!

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Becca     at 6:58 am

Girl! Get a babysitter!!! Love your blog, love your baby, love your dogs, but for the sake of your sanity find some help! There is no way you can manage 12+ hrs a day with a baby, who does not nap, and be able to get any work done. Would your husband bring him to work and expect things to get done? How can you really expect to get everything done during short naps and in the evening! I would recommend looking for a University student who might have 2-3 afternoons a week where she can come over and keep him busy, take him to the park, do some activities and give you a chunk of free time. I mean who would NOT want to come play with him, he is so adorable! I babysat all through college for a little extra side cash but manly because I love children and it was just so fun to take a break from books/college drama and see life through a toddler’s eyes. I recommend sittercity.com- you can connect to people looking for babysitting jobs, look at resumes, and set up interviews. Might seem strange but totally normal, I found some great families on the site! (I sound like a commercial:) If not for your own sanity, do it for your readers who need some delicious thanksgiving recipes(by the way how do you make the polenta?) I would imagine something consistent would make both of your lives so much more relaxed ! Hope Tuesday is better for you :)

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Wendi Reply:

Yes, please, please post a recipe for the polenta!!

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Emily Malone Reply:

Working from a coffee shop as we speak, while Cullen is with a babysitter! :) I have help on Tuesdays, and occasionally on Thursdays. Only issue is that it’s not in my house, so I can’t really get any cooking projects done then. I have been thinking about getting someone to come to the house one or two days after the holidays. Especially now that there is no napping! We have used sittercity for dog sitters and had great luck, so we’ll definitely try that again!

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Allison     at 6:58 am

My husband worked all the time when my kids were little and several friends and I agreed that weekends are hardest because everyone else is having “family time”. Plus, after a hard week by myself, I always expected a bit of an enjoyable break on the weekends. We all need a break! I actually get very nostalgic for those days when I read this kind of post…which is crazy since I still very clearly remember how hard I found some days and how frustrating they could be.

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Emily Malone Reply:

Exactly. I just really need the weekend to recharge. And Casey is actually out of town this week, so having to Sunday all by myself – knowing I was going into a week of him being gone – just really set me off. It happens. :)

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elizabeth     at 7:02 am

I love polenta. I make it in the oven with just salt and water, how do you make it? I wish I could get the leftovers to become creamy again, any tips?

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Katie Reply:

I too would love to hear how you make your polenta!!

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Emily Malone Reply:

We have mastered the re-heating technique. I will take pictures and do a post on it!

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Ali @ Peaches and Football     at 7:07 am

My mom has little baggies in her jewelry box from each of our first hair cuts. :)

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Beks     at 7:09 am

I so need to go to TJ’s to look for that cocoa on payday!

I also have to say, you’re a great photographer, though I think it helps when you have such an adorable little model. :-)

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Katie     at 7:11 am

I totally appreciate these posts! It makes me feel like I’m not the only mom in the universe who has these tough days, or has a perfectly tempermented child who is constantly smiling and will nap on command. Being a mom has brought out levels of empathy in me I didn’t know exsisted! :)

PS I’ve been polenta obsessed too – my toppings are kale, sundried tomatoes, and mushrooms, and I mix rice cheese in to the polenta to make it “creamy” – YUM!

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Emily Malone Reply:

I know what you mean about the empathy. Moms unite! :)

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Katie @ Soulshine and Sassafras     at 7:14 am

Aw, I’m sorry you had such a rough couple of days. I hope you’re feeling better soon!

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Adrianne     at 7:17 am

I appreciate these posts as well. Like you, I don’t normally rant on my blog about the difficulties of motherhood, but reading other people’s blogs sometimes makes it seems like those difficulties don’t exist. I KNOW they do, but reading this makes me feel a little bit better that even you have rough days sometimes. Not that I want you to have rough days….ugh, hopefully you know what I’m trying to say! :) Also, I remember you saying that you were having some thyroid troubles. I just got diagnosed with Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis, and if you’ve been experiencing any of the same symptoms that I have, I know you’re exhausted!! I have no idea how you do so much with Cullen, your blog, your photos, your recipes, your social life. I’m amazed! And just a teensy bit jealous…if I’m being honest:) Hope your week gets better and Cullen decides to nap for you! I’m surprised he didn’t pass out in the stroller–that usually does it for my little lady when nothing else works!

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Adrianne Reply:

P.S. I also wanted to tell you that reading (even briefly) about your thyroid was what prompted me to get mine checked, which in turn led to my diagnosis. So thank you for sharing–I don’t know how long it might have gone undiagnosed otherwise.

And lastly, I love Cullen’s haircut. He’s adorable no matter what his hair looks like, but you did a great job!

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Emily Malone Reply:

Oh wow – so happy to hear it! Not happy you have a thyroid issue, but glad I was able to help get things figured out.

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Emily Malone Reply:

I try to keep the ranting to a minimum, but my bad mood wins out sometimes. :) My thyroid issues have actually improved quite a bit. I went to my family practitioner for a follow up, who ran some additional test. My levels actually weren’t quite as “off” as originally indicated. The T3 and T4 tests came back pretty normal. I’m still taking synthroid for a little while, but she’s confident I won’t have to take it for too much longer. Sadly, Cullen will NOT sleep in a stroller. I don’t get it! I’d love to curl up in there! :)

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Mary     at 7:28 am

Emily, I’ve been following your blog for about six months now and I just wanted to say how much I appreciate your honesty in your writing. I’ve read snippets of other blogs of mommy food writers, and it seems like their kids are perfect and their recipes always turn out exactly right. It’s so refreshing to read your posts and know that they’re genuine. I hope your week goes well! :o)

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Emily Malone Reply:

Thanks so much, Mary! Oh gosh, I have plenty of failed recipes. You should have seen these Brussels sprouts. So gross!

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Carly @ Snack Therapy     at 7:33 am

My Mom has hair from my first trim saved in a scrapbook. So funny!

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Erin @ Girl Gone Veggie     at 7:44 am

I LOVE Cullen’s haircut. It’s so cute! I hope today is a better day for you!

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deva at deva by definition     at 7:47 am

I think you are doing a great job. i am pretty sure my mom has locks of our hair from each of our first cuts at home somewhere. :-)

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katie     at 7:51 am

What kind of shoes does Cullen wear? Liv is starting to walk more and I have one pair of soft soled boots I put her in, but I need another pair of shoes or two…

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Emily Malone Reply:

He had SeeKaiRun and Riley Roos! Really like both of them.

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Erika     at 7:51 am

I love your “real life” posts! So many food bloggers try to portray a perfect life, perfect diet, perfect everything… which is so fake, not to mention boring. :)
PS. Cullen’s haircut is precious!

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Emily Malone Reply:

Oh there is a lot of imperfect happening over here, haha. But that is okay. Perfect is boring!

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Marie     at 7:53 am

love your honesty Emily! Refreshing and genuine- 2 HUGE reasons why I (and so many others!) continue to read.
I echo other’s requests for your polenta technique! And I’m also wondering – where do you find that hot cocoa? I’m hoping it’s available somewhere in Canada!!

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Emily Malone Reply:

Hot cocoa is Trader Joe’s! Thanks so much for reading – I really appreciate it!

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Laura     at 7:54 am

Hi Emily,
Thanks for this post. Sometimes it’s nice to hear that I’m not the only one with days like this. Yesterday was only day 3 of being a solo parent to my 18 month old son while my husband is away for work for the next few weeks! My son was so crabby that we even took a trip to the pediatrician to see if he had an ear infection, because I thought for sure he wasn’t going on a 4 day nap strike and being this cranky for no reason, but sure enough, no ear infection- just cranky. It seems like some days no matter what I do or how many times we regroup we end up having a hard day, especially when there’s no reprieve, no break to make dinner and no nap time to get work done. We’re also getting up much earlier – I think the time change that has thrown off the little guy’s eating and sleeping routine, which throws off our whole world. Hang in there this week and hopefully you can also find a bit of comfort knowing that you’re not alone.

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Emily Malone Reply:

I don’t know why I was weird and vague in my post, but yes – we have the same thing going on. Casey is actually out of town – in Dallas all week, so I’m on my own with no relief, like you. It’s just hard. I guess it’s good he doesn’t have an ear infection, but it would have been nice to have some answers. And YES to the time change – we are up at 5:15 these days. Ugh!

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Stephanie @ LoveLaughterLight     at 7:56 am

Everyone has days like this! Mine was an extended version, Wed-Fri of last week. One hour before shift on Wed night, I learned my mother abandoned my 38 y/o developmentally disabled brother and put him on a bus from Mississippi to New York. My extended family picked him up, but turned to me for answers to where he was going to stay. The stress came to a head for me during my Thursday night shift and I called out Friday to mentally get my ducks in a row and start researching and contacting services. I don’t have all the answers I’m seeking, but I have made some progress and am hopeful for the best for my brother.

Sorry–that was my rant on your blog!

Sidenote: I can’t wait for TJ to come to Denver!

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Emily Malone Reply:

Oh no! That sounds very scary. I hope your brother is okay, and in good hands now. You are welcome to rant here any time you need to. :)

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Stephanie @ LoveLaughterLight Reply:

Thank you, Emily! He has some appointments set now and I’m hopeful we’re on the right track for him.

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Leslie     at 8:10 am

Hang in there! He will be leaving for college before you know it. My boys are men now, one has babies of his own. I remember those crazy times though. Wish I had a solution. Hug him tight and hang on for the ride of your life.

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Emily Malone Reply:

:) At leas the ride is fun!

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Susannah     at 8:33 am

Hi Emily, I’ve been reading for about a year but have never commented. I so enjoy your blog, and since my husband and I have been experimenting with a vegetarian/vegan lifestyle, I’ve loved your recipes. I wanted to tell you that Cullen’s habits (activity level, nap struggles) remind me of my older son, who crawled/walked very early and was basically on the go all.the.time. (still is!) I just wanted to throw a little support your way…I have been there, so many times, on the no-nap, or hours of fighting the nap days. There are few things more dispiriting and exhausting than a child who will not sleep. My son has always had terrible sleep issues (Cullen seems much more consistent than him, so he will likely grow out of the nap time struggles!) and it always frustrated me when I would vent only to hear “maybe he isn’t tired”, when clearly the poor baby was exhausted. Finn went through several week-long stages of acting like he wouldn’t nap, but always returned to it. He is three now and still fights it frequently, but still takes one almost every day.

Hang in there on days like these! I stay at home with my boys (3 and 6 months) and I love it, even if sometimes I feel like I’m going crazy:)

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Emily Malone Reply:

Thank you, Susannah! Glad to know it’s not just me. :) And yes, Cullen is usually actually a really good, consistent sleeper, which just makes this so much more frustrating. He’s definitely tired. By 4pm he’s a mess, but still won’t sleep. We just have to keep going, going, going, and I’m ready to fall down by bedtime. Let’s hope this is a phase! :)

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Anna @ On Anna's Plate     at 8:50 am

Man, those nap-free days are the worst. We have a seven-month old, and she’s pretty good about taking regular naps, but we’ve had a few days where she’s totally boycotted them, and I feel like we’re all so worn down by the end of the day. Hope you have a good week and Cullen sneaks a few naps in here and there!

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Erica @ Coffee & Quinoa     at 9:08 am

Aww, sorry about the tough Monday. His cheeks are pretty adorable, though. Also, I would love a polenta bowl recipe (even if it’s super simple)!

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Emily Malone Reply:

Polenta bowl, coming right up! I’ll take pictures next time I make it. :)

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Samantha Reply:

Me too! Thanks. :)

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Katheryn     at 9:41 am

I feel your pain. Really, I do. Hubby has been working on a huge project, so he’s been working 7 days a week, 90 hours a week for four months. I’ve been on my own with my 8-year-old, 5-year-old, and the baby is 5 months old now.

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Emily Malone Reply:

Boo, sounds like you need a break too! Hang in there!

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Elisabeth     at 9:49 am

Cullen is extra cute in the photos with his white hat!

Hope the rest of your week goes better :)

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Sara     at 9:51 am

Aww, sounds like a very blah weekend! The rain on Sunday did suck! It was my husband’s birthday and we didn’t really do a whole lot because of the weather.

And save the hair!! We cut Tyler’s mullet a few weeks ago and I put her little chunk of hair in an envelope with the date and tucked it into her baby book (that I haven’t written anything in, haha).

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Rae     at 10:07 am

You need “quiet time.” I still do it with my 4yo. It’s 2-2.5 hours in your room, either napping or quietly playing. It takes the place of the nap after he/she has outgrown it. It is invaluable for getting stuff done and staying sane. As I tell my kid, “it’s not about being sleepy, it’s about being quiet.”

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Emily Malone Reply:

We are doing this! I’ve been putting him in his crib around 9:30 am (when he used to take a morning nap), so that I can shower, get ready, etc. He’s in there for 30-40 minutes most days, and just plays with stuffed animals and reads books. It definitely helps. And glad to know it lasts for several more years! :)

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Amber K     at 11:02 am

I hope you both can get some rest! That sounds absolutely exhausting. At least you have the cutest little buddy ever to keep you company.

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Emily Malone Reply:

So true!

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Garnet     at 12:04 pm

Ranting is healthy! As is being bookended by a GSP and GSP/Lab (something I have a lot of experience with!).

I think we all have frustrating and lackluster weekends from time to time. Last weekend felt like a mish-mash of busy/un-fun/feeling crummy/didn’t get enough done.

Taking a deep breath (or twenty) and gearing up for a positive week is definitely something that takes conscious effort… I’m working on letting the disappointing weekend “go” and focusing on ways to make the week feel like time better spent. I hope your week improves in this manner, too!

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Emily Malone Reply:

Awww yeah – love those pups, even though they drive me insane. :)

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Garnet Reply:

The insanity is part of their charm. Or at least that’s what I keep telling myself. I almost adopted a 3rd GSP recently and thankfully was talked out of it. I love the breed and will probably never own another kind of dog, but they are totally bonkers. Thankfully they’re also cute, affectionate, always ready for adventure, and hilariously silly. :)

I love seeing photos of your dogs! You should squeeze them in a little more, here and there. ;)

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Emily Malone Reply:

Haha, so true! I know, I really should include more of them on the blog. I promise they are a much bigger part of our lives than I probably imply. They are loving our long evening walks these days, and I am gaining lots of arm muscle wrestling them on the leash while holding onto the stroller. :)

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Ann     at 12:08 pm

I don’t even have a kid and I have days like that – in fact, yesterday was just one of those days. You have my sympathy and my respect! Take care!

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Katie D.     at 12:38 pm

Thanks for being real :) I appreciate the true look into mommyhood!

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Shannan     at 12:51 pm

I love his hat!! Good luck this week with Casey working and having a non napping baby. You deserve that hot chocolate and then some!:)

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chiara     at 12:57 pm

Hang in there, Emily. I wanted to echo everyone else who said that they admire you for being honest about the challenges of parenting particularly when you have a spouse who works long hours. It does get better! Each month that passes, Cullen will get more and more independent and that in and of itself will make things easier. Also, while he is protesting naps, have you tried an earlier bedtime? I still do it with my 5 year and 3 year old. Neither of them nap anymore but occasionally they wake up an hour (or more earlier) than normal and i move bedtime back by as much. Even if they don’t fall asleep I’m happy to have a break and tell them they don’t need to sleep but they need to rest in the dark and think about nice things. My husband also works crazy hours and travels a lot and something that really helps all of us (and sustains me through the long days) is that we plan for him to take time off when things slow down again. Even having him take a Monday or Friday off makes a big difference to my mental state and makes our boys so happy. Good luck!

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Crystal     at 1:33 pm

I randomly made your famous blackened tofu for my husband last night (HUGE hit) and as I was trying to explain where I got the recipe I realized I was gushing about you and your blog.

You’ve really inspired me (and countless other people you’ll never meet or know about) over the last few years.

Hang in there on the not so good days and know that you’re so inspiring not because your life is perfect, but because you manage to connect with readers about the bumps in the road as well as the good stuff.

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Wendi Reply:

Ha ha, I do that too (gush about the blog, but we’re Seattle ex-patriots, so there’s that too) :)

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Hilary @ PeanutButterSpoonfuls     at 2:46 pm

I don’t know what is in the air, but my little man (13 months) is on the same nap schedule. As in he just doesn’t unless it’s for 20 mins in the car! The worst is when you sit around the house saying “we’ll go somewhere after his nap” and then the nap never comes. The day feels like such a waste! I’m sure it’s just a phase though. Everything with babies and toddlers is, right? I hope?

We got B’s hair cut at 5 months because it was already a major mullet. They put a little lock of hair in some melted candle wax to hold it together so we could save it. Thought it was a great idea!

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Ruth @ FacetiousFarang     at 5:40 pm

I actually appreciate reading a good rant now and then! The blog medium can make a blogger’s life look so perfect, and it’s nice to be reminded that bloggers are human, too. I can empathize with sucky weekend syndrome – when my husband randomly has to work on Sundays, it is such a disappointment. May your next weekend be more enjoyable!

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Jun     at 5:53 pm

Gosh from the pictures, I totally foresee him growing up looking all like his Dad! As much as I enjoy reading your blog before Cullen’s presence, I MUST admit that Cullen is seriously the main attraction now! Hehe so cute!

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kaity @ kaityscooking     at 6:26 pm

i still havent tried polenta but just from your pictures of dinner i think i just may have to try it it looks so good! and cullen and that hat are absolutely adorable!

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Alex @ Raw Recovery     at 7:36 pm

Sorry to hear it was a rough weekend for you. I can certainly relate (was in the hospital…not so fun). I don’t know if others have this happen to them but when I try to click on different pages I am having that problem where it redirects to different ads (e.g. I click on a page and it goes to viacord cord blood banking website). Sorry if I’m being annoying by pointing this out, I just didn’t know if someone had alerted you already.

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alex     at 9:03 pm

ack! I hear ya. I have a total cat-napper over here, every 2 hours, 30 minute nap! makes it impossible to do anything! as soon as I get settled she wakes up! the days do get long, sometimes I just can’t wait till 730!

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Nana Phyllis     at 7:39 am

I’m thinking for your sanity, I’d give Cullen some “room time” in his crib, whether he sleeps or not. He could spend an hour with toys in his crib mid morning and again after lunch. He may get bored and go to sleep, may just play. you start with 5-10 minutes and work up to 30-60 minutes. It will give you a chance to shower/clean up kitchen/prepare supper/etc.

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Noelle (@singerinkitchen)     at 7:50 am

Wow I feel like we are going through the same thing with the whole nap thing! Hey Emily, do you think you can do a post on what Cullen is now eating? I love that tray you have for him! Is he drinking almond milk or dairy?

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Jenn Chrisman     at 8:00 am

Hi! I just found your blog last week and had a lovely weekend reading through old posts and “getting to know you!” I very rarely comment on blogs but felt compelled to offer condolences for the lack of napping. I’d bet Cullen is probably making that transition down to just one nap a day and that can be very tough on us mommies (kiddies too). Hang in there, if you keep with it, he will get the hang of it, may take a week or two (ouch) but hopefully you start to reap the benefits of those 2 1/2 hour stretches….ah, bliss :-)

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Kathy     at 8:29 am

Not sure if you have already tried this but it worked with my son who did basically the same thing around Cullen’s age and being that he too was very active we both really needed him to nap. I took a small tent and set it up in his room and made a nice cozy ‘resting spot’ we we go in together and read a book and then I would turn on some soft music and snuggle for a few minutes. He always ended up falling asleep and the best part was I didn’t have to move him to crib I just snuck out and left him to sleep, worked like a charm.

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Hillary | Nutrition Nut on the Run     at 8:36 am

That dinner sounds like my type of Fall/Winter comfort food – mmm!

I am in love with Cullen’s white cap <3

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Emily @ www.main-eats.com     at 9:24 am

Your dinner looks amazing and Cullen’s haircut is precious! Such a handsome boy you have!

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Stephanie     at 11:28 am

Those kale chips look so yummy! Can you post a recipe?

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Arielle     at 1:45 pm

This is so, so strange, but the steak thing just happened to me today, too! This guy came to my door and asked me if I like steak. He said that he delivers for Applebees and a few other restaurants and had some extras he was trying to get rid of. We are vegetarian too and I thought it was creepy so I said no…I wonder if it is a new scam! It was so strange.

And I don’t live in Seattle – all the way across the country!

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Ally     at 7:02 pm

Ah, the sleep stuff is so hard! And confusing. And even harder when a spouse is out of town for a week….you hate to live for bedtime, but some days it can be really hard to enjoy the day when you have no break in sight. Hope Cullen’s napping improves soon.

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Yosef - This American Bite     at 7:19 pm

For the record, I love the chocolate and cayenne. I make a cocoa and cayenne popcorn every so often.

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Samantha     at 9:34 am

Hang in there. This weather out here is tough stuff in the winter. I am in North Bend and sometimes I head a bit west just to get a break in the rain. I can’t remember if you have tried Kelsey Creek yet (more Bellevue) or the Blueberry Farm trail system. Both would probably be kid friendly and give you some variety.

I keep expecting in that in a couple of years the posts will start to swing to him in the kitchen with you as a side kick. I hope you get some adult time soon. All my friends with kids kind of implode sometimes from the constant kid time.

I grew up out here and the winters are tough stuff. It is cold and clear today. Enjoy.

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sach     at 7:48 pm

You’ve probably heard of this, but I guess it does happen around the city:
http://www.capitolhillseattle.com/2012/01/04/beware-the-capitol-hill-meat-scam

Lovely posts, wishing you well,
S

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whitney dienger     at 12:01 pm

I have been drooling over that picture of the polenta all week. Would you mind posting a recipe when you have a chance?

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spot the difference game for kids     at 1:57 am

Stop trying to impress your colleagues annd start charming the pants ooff your leads.
As promised, here is the next installment of my self-made simplified Engglish
grammar guide. Similarly, you can also sell the postcards at the same locations; it is
just a matter of spotting the bargain posfcards ffor resale.

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