Creamy Pesto Spaghetti with Fresh Tomatoes

Well, it’s been almost a month since I last posted and in that time we have welcomed our snuggly, curious, and lovable son into this world! Liam was born on 7/13/19 (all prime numbers!) at 4:17 in the morning. He was born 7lbs 11oz and 20 inches long, 48 hours after my water broke.  It was a long and beautiful few days during which my husband and I came together to bring Liam into the world with love, patience, and a lot of hard work. It was a day I will never forget! And somehow, here I am almost 4 weeks out – slowly adjusting to our new life as a family of 3 (well, 6 if you count the cats and pup.)

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Each day Liam has longer wake times and longer stretches of sleep giving me a moment to reflect and WRITE!  So, here I am with some postpartum reflections. None of these are earth shattering, and all are a testament to the army of friends, mom bloggers, and birth professionals that I religiously follow.  Nonetheless, here are the things on my mind after 1 month of being a mom!

  1. Build and call on your support network:

Women are told to take 6 weeks after birth to go slow and use this initial time to heal and bond with baby. In order to do so, however, I’ve learned the deep deep importance of having a support network – both professional and familial. 

During this process I was lucky enough to have an incredibly intelligent and calm birth doula, a caring midwife, and a knowledgeable lactation consultant.  Health insurance is crazy here in the US and only some of these were covered, but all of them are services that all birthing people should be able to access.  Each provided me with a unique perspective and individualized care that has allowed us to humbly bring Liam into this world. Being vulnerable with these women has allowed me to ask my honest questions and move through challenges with information and support. 

Beyond this I have a tremendous set of family and friends who have done everything from making freezer meals ahead of time, bringing amazing lunches (Aunt Paula – I need to make/blog that curried chicken salad soon), and chatting at all hours of the day in response to my ridiculous questions. What color is normal for baby poop? Is it OK that the dog ate a piece of the umbilical cord? When should I start pumping? Why does he always manage to get an arm out of his swaddle?  My father – who lives downstairs – is already building a special relationship with his grandson while maintaining his ‘favorite’ status with our pup. And of course my partner in crime has been unmatched. He never bats an eye with every request or midnight burp, has definitely changed 95% of the diapers to date, and countless other things that have allowed me some space to recover and heal. 

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  1. Say what you need:

With each day bringing something new it is hard to know exactly what one will need before this wild ride begins. But – I’ve learned to ask for what I need! In terms of food I’ve been digging little platters of finger foods like trail mix, apples, or yogurt and granola.  On some days I never leave the couch while guests visit, on others I need to say no to guests because I’ve felt overwhelmed or just wasn’t able to pull myself together enough to be seen. On other days I’ve needed to get outside for a walk – either as a family or by myself.  Moral of the story – say what you need and be OK if that changes every day (or every hour).

  1. Be patient and kind with your partner:

As I’ve already said, each day has brought new adventures. All of the beautiful and predictable routines we’ve built together over the last few years are out of the window and each of us is out of our element on the regular now. Make coffee? Get groceries? Shower? Walk the dog? All of these things take new planning, prep, and some give and take for who is in charge of the baby at any moment.  On top of this, we are each learning how to be parents! Many times our styles align and other times they do not. It has been essential for us to be patient with one another and gentle in those moments where things aren’t yet smooth.

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  1. Learn about your own birth story (if possible):

I was amazed during the course of Liam’s birth how many parallels there were to my own. My mother’s water broke before contractions started, exactly a week early – just like with Liam! Of course this will not be the case with everyone, but this brought me a deep sense of respect and connection to my own mother.  I’ve personally found it therapeutic to discus my own birth story and hear that of others. I fully respect and know that this is a very personal issue, and other women will feel wildly different here.  

  1. Get to know your child:

Last but not least, for now, is the importance of getting to know the rhythms and needs of your own child.  There is SO much information in the world – countless books, experts, and social media sites providing ‘do’s and don’ts’ for the early months and years.  While I do read and follow many of these I’ve found that, in the end, the best information comes from Liam himself. In only a month we’ve loved getting to know him and know that this will only continue to amplify as time goes on.

My goal is to keep writing when I have moments and I’m sure I’ll have more to say about the physical demands of motherhood (such as the importance of bringing a spare set of clothes not just for the baby but for ME!).  I’d love to hear what things you learned in your early months of parenthood!

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Now, onto this dish, our garden is overflowing with fresh basil (because we haven’t touched it since it was planted over 4 weeks ago) and our neighbor gave us a huge bowl filled with tomatoes. So – we had a caprese salad as an appetizer and made this delicious and simple pasta.  I can’t take credit for the cooking, as the hubs and one of my besties were in charge, but it was delicious and needed to be documented!

Creamy Pesto Spaghetti with Fresh Tomatoes

  • Servings: 4-5
  • Print

A simple spaghetti dish using fresh pesto and cheese. Simple and delicious!

Ingredients

  • 6 cubes of pesto (note: I freeze pesto in ice cube trays at the end of each season)
  • 1 box of spaghetti
  • 2-3 pats of butter
  • 1/4 cup 2% milk
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh mozzarella
  • Fresh parmesan cheese
  • 2 fresh tomatoes – diced
  • Fresh basil

Steps & Notes

  1. Place the pesto into a sauce pan and heat with 1 pat of butter and a splash of white wine, stirring regularly until the pesto becomes a liquid sauce.
  2. Add the milk and stir well, then add the mozzarella and stir again until mixed.
  3. Cook the spaghetti according to the directions on the box. Drain, and use some of the pasta water to thicken the sauce if necessary.
  4. Add another pat of butter to the drained pasta then pour the sauce over and mix until fully coated.
  5. Let sit for 2-3 minutes.
  6. Serve topped with parmesan, fresh tomatoes, and fresh basil
    • Note: The next day we had this as leftovers topped with grilled seasoned chicken thighs which was also delicious.

 

5 comments

  1. I like everything in this salad. 🌿🍅

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Congratulations on the birth of your son. May you be blessed always.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much. It has been such a joy so far!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Yum! Love all the ingredients in this!

    Like

  4. […] to find some new momentum! Stay tuned for more meal memories and some new experiments as the little guy begins solid […]

    Like

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