The Journal

Tonight, we helped Lilliana with one of her school assignments, to fill the outside of her journal with pictures of her family, events in her life, vacations, memories, pictures of favorites such as Julia, her American Girl Doll and her two cats as well as a picture of our little Mickey (our black cat that lived with me in NYC when he was a little kitten. he disappeared a couple years ago outside our home and was never found again. we still miss him A LOT!)

Well, as I was looking back at the photos, I was drawn to the photos of Lucas the day he was born, at the hospital and it made me so sad. These pictures should make me happy but instead I couldn’t look at them. I was reminded of how much I wanted those moments again with Julian and how those moments were stolen from me. Those happy, carefree, completely in love moments. I wish he was here. I wish things were different. I know that I’ve said this a million times, but this hurts A LOT! If you see me around, it may look like I’m ok, but that is the surface. If you look deep inside of my heart and my soul, you will see all the pain and all the sadness and all the regret that he isn’t here, that he was born sick, that he died. My little baby died. He is buried underneath the ground in a strange place with other strangers. My little beautiful baby who should be here with me, in my arms.

Yesterday, I had the pleasure of spending some time with my nephew, Jake. Do you remember him? He was born two weeks after Julian was born so those very moments that I am missing with Julian, my sister is experiencing with Jake. I know she is enjoying them. I can see it loud and clear and it’s wonderful for her to enjoy him. He is special. Well, yesterday I spent a couple hours alone with him, me, Jake and Lucas while my sister got some stuff done around the house. It was such a joy to see Lucas playing with him and looking at him. He didn’t get mad when Jake tore apart his train tracks a million times and he smiled when Jake crawled up his leg and looked up at him. I thought about Julian so much. I thought about those moments when Julian would be playing with Lucas and Lucas playing with Julian. Those moments when I would be holding Julian and making him laugh, seeing those tiny little front teeth. Well, it so happens that Jake took four or five steps on his own for the very first time yesterday and I was there to see it. He walked to me. I couldn’t believe it. I was so excited for him, for my sister as she watched her little baby walk and for me, because it reminded me of Julian, Lilliana and Lucas. I tried to enjoy all my time with him, instead of being sad. I wanted to enjoy his diaper changes (even the poppy), the onesie, the kisses, the baby smell, the feeding of cereal, the first steps… all of it. I miss my baby. I miss so much.

Julian and Jake at Christmas 2010

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Food Jules Cookbook Challenge

Aside from all the various cookbooks I have on the shelf, I also have a HUGE three ring black binder that I put together many years ago with my favorite recipes. Well, I think it’s time to clean it up and share the best recipes with you. There have been many meals that I’ve made that aren’t in the cookbook so I need to add those in there too. All in preparation to one day, maybe, write a cookbook. Maybe.

Well, for now, you will enjoy all ups and downs of going through this big black book. I will cook the recipe, grade it, take a photo and share the best recipes with you. Then, I’d love it if you tried to cook it and sent me your comments and your grade to see if you agree. Take the challenge with me!

This will also be a great opportunity to gather some great recipes for the kids cooking classes, as I will be teaching many of them this Fall season. So, stay tuned as we begin this Food Jules Cookbook Challenge!

Farmer’s Market “Vacation”

Since it’s raining so much today, Food Jules will NOT be at the Farmers Market. I believe the market is still going on but I will not be there

Also, next Friday is my cousin’s wedding so I will NOT be at the Farmers Market on Sept 30th either. If you need Jams, Granola or any baked goodies for the weekend, you can email me and we can figure something out. I have some freshly baked BANANA BLUEBERRY BREAD and DOUBLE CHOCOLATE MUFFINS today.

Food Jules will return to the market with yummy goodies on Friday, October 2nd.

Stressed out!

Well, I just can’t believe it but we are not the only ones that are under a lot of stress! So is our goldfish, Hammerhead. He’s been acting very strange over the last couple of days, laying upside down on the top of the water. We thought he was dead many times. The pet store told me that it sounds like “he’s stressed out”. I didn’t know that fish could be stressed? He told me to change his water and give him more food. That sounds about right, that’s what I need, a new environment and more food!

Hammerhead has been with us for over a year. It’s the longest that a fish has survived in this house. He lived here while I was pregnant and when Julian was here with us. Obviously, since our baby Julian was our top priority, we didn’t have much time for changing his water or feeding him during those nine weeks while Julian was here, but he has managed to survive. Now, that we are able to take care of him, he has come close to death a couple times already, but by some miracle, I was able to save him. Don’t ask me how, I just tried some bacteria stuff, changed his water, talked to him. I gave that fish a lot of attention. I didn’t want him to die. I wanted him to survive. I guess, I thought about Julian and how the fish met him and if and when he is to pass away, I will be very, very sad. It may sound weird to you, but I want to keep him around forever!

So, let’s hope that he makes it this time too. Thinking of my beloved baby Julian and missing him so very much today!

Eight Months

Today, September 19, 2011 marks eight months since our little baby Julian left this world. I can’t say that it has “gotten easier”, as a matter of fact, it has gotten more difficult to be without him. Just watching everyone’s world continue, babies being born, babies growing bigger and new babies to come. Life continues all around us as we stand still, battling our everyday sadness that lies within all of us, a battle and sadness that will continue for the rest of our living days. We all love him so much and wish he was here with us, to enjoy our hugs and kisses and our family.

Julian's First Days at the Hospital

Thinking of you, Julian, today and every minute of every other day.

Here is to our Food Jules cooking experts!

The FOOD JULES cooking classes continue this Fall at the Edith Wheeler Memorial Library here in Monroe, after such a successful summer.

Yesterday, was our first class for the Fall semester and it was great. The kids (students) are just amazing. It is truly an honor to teach these kids. We have so much fun in these classes, working together in teams, cooking up different recipes. The kids have been learning all about nutrition, local farming, measurements, the environment and of course, how to cook. The kids were so excited to see we were using locally produced, ORGANIC MAPLE SYRUP from Connecticut. It is great for them to learn to support our local farmers and businesses. It is an honor to teach them about the benefits of creating your own garden, cooking fresh vegetables and fruits and eating healthy snacks and foods that are not only good for you, but that taste great!

Yesterday, we had BRUNCH and made homemade granola, ate it as a parfait with Organic Yogurt and Berries, we cooked two different kind of quiches – Quiche Lorraine and Broccoli and Cheddar Quiche and we made Organic Banana, Chocolate Chip Pancakes. I also brought some of our homemade Banana Nut Bread. They had quite a lunch!

Quiche Lorraine

Broccoli and Cheddar Quiche

The kids get a lot of enjoyment and feel proud to get a recipe, collect the items from our pantry table, measure them on their own, crack their own eggs, cook their own food and eating it all, together as a family. The kids even wash and dry dishes when they are done preparing their meal and help set the table to sit down and enjoy all of the food they made. It’s great team work! I am so very proud of all of them and their parents should be as well! I truly believe it is teaching them to look at food in a whole new light!

Our next class will be held on Saturday, October 8th. Sign up online at www.ewml.org. We’re all looking forward to another successful class!

Go FOOD JULES team!

Warm, Sweet, Delicious Baked Goodies…

All of our baked goodies today smell DELICIOUS!!! Stop over at the Monroe Farmers Market today for some warm, sweet, yummy, organic APPLE PIE MUFFINS and BLUEBERRY LEMON MUFFINS as well as our sweet, BANANA PECAN BREAD and today’s feature…. MAPLE OATMEAL SCONES! All of these baked goodies will just melt in your mouth this afternoon.

We also have our organic CHICKEN EMPANADAS and SPINACH AND CHEESE EMPANADAS. Come early if you want to grab some of these divine empanadas for dinner tonight!

Hope to see you there!