Tuesday, May 15, 2012

G is for: It's a GIRL! {+Freezer Meals +Tin Roof Restaurant Review}

Introducing: Kenzie Erin
Fair warning: the blog will be a little light this week. But I have an excellent excuse. I was in L.A. over the weekend for the birth of my new little cousin: Kenzie Erin Purdy!

My cousin Erin was due on Monday, May 14th, so I knew there was a good chance that I would not get to meet the little peanut. However, she insisted I head South for a few days and promised me a great weekend no matter what. Seemed like a good enough reason for me!

I arrived on Saturday morning and immediately started helping them move into a new place. (Who moves into a new apartment two days before her due date? Answer = my cousin. But she had lots of good reasons).

At any rate, it didn't appear that the baby would be coming early. Erin was scheduled to get induced Sunday night, and I had come to terms with the fact that I would have to wait until my next trip to meet the baby. For dinner, we went to Tin Roof Bistro in Manhattan Beach. It's located in a shopping mall, so initially it might seem like a weird spot, but the food was fabulous. For dinner, we had: fried brussels sprouts (as you know, I'm obsessed), lasagna (Stu declared it his favorite lasagna ever), seared ahi tuna salad, and crab cakes. They also have a wood fire oven, so their pizzas are supposedly delicious as well. Overall, I was really happy with our meal and would totally recommend.

We came back to the new apartment, chatted for a bit and went to bed, ready to enjoy some volleyball on the beach the next day. And then Erin's water broke about an hour later. They woke me up to inform me they were headed to the hospital. So exciting! I was certain I would be meeting the baby by Sunday afternoon.
The update Sunday morning was that things were good but progressing slowly. We were still expecting a Mother's Day baby. I decided to utilize my free time by moving the rest of their kitchen (with the help of Erin's friend Erica) and preparing some meals for their freezer for when they returned home from the hospital. I made Chicken Parmesan, Enchiladas, and Macaroni and Cheese with roasted Jalapenos and Pancetta. All of these work great for the freezer because they all called to be fully cooked before their oven time anyways.

The only tricky one was the Chicken Parm, as I was worried about it getting soggy. To combat this, I filled a dish with tomato sauce and froze that layer. I added some mozzarella cheese (to act as a barrier between the sauce and the chicken), then froze that. I flash-froze the breaded/cooked chicken breasts on an a sheet pan lined with foil and placed those on top of the frozen layer of sauce/cheese. Finally, I sprinkled with more mozzarella and some Parmesan (another barrier) and a little more sauce. I froze extra sauce in a plastic freezer bag in case they wanted to add more when they baked it. (Or to use separately in pasta). In all, I think they'll have about 6-7 meals waiting for them when they get back to their new apartment. I'll be interested to hear how all of the dishes reheat.
By the time I was done, it was almost 9:00 p.m. Stu called to invite me to the hospital to hang out in the event that the baby did come that I would be able to stay and meet it (as opposed to waiting until afterwards since visiting hours are 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.) I of course accepted. Nothing really happened until around 2 a.m. when she finally got to start pushing (26 hours after her water broke). Being in the room was kind of intense but a really cool experience looking back. With no real progress after an hour and a half, the doctor recommended emergency "C" section. Kenzie Erin Purdy was finally born at 4:36 a.m.

I got to come in and meet her around 5:30. She weighed 6 pounds, 4 ounces and was 18 inches long. She is adorable and has a big mop of dark hair already. It was so crazy being able to hold a newborn less than an hour after she was born. (By the way, that photo on the upper left was taken about 6 hours before Erin's water broke. She decided to have a last-minute maternity session on the beach....doesn't she look gorgeous?!?) And even after a marathon labor, she still looked as beautiful and glowing holding her newborn baby girl. Congrats to the proud parents! I'm so thankful I was able to be a part of it!


  1. Hi Jaymee, I'm new to your blog but I'm enjoying reading them...your enthusiasm is infectous! San Francisco Bay Area...not a bad place to be a foodie!!P.S. Saw you at a Giants game...you're pretty cute!:-))cheers, Bobby Mac

  2. Hi I am a childhood friend of Stu's! I was so excited to see how everything went for them. Their sweet girl is absolutely beautiful and I love her adorable name. Thanks so much for sharing, I sooo loved it!! I also love to cook so it will be fun to get ideas from you!
    Thanks again,
    it was such a JOY!!

    1. Erin...so glad you enjoyed the post. (BTW...I'm from Great Falls too!) Anyways, thanks for stopping by.


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