Goodness, how is it already two weeks into August and I haven’t written a post yet this month? Summer is flying past me, it seems. It’s been a blur of birthdays, my mom’s, mine, and my sister’s, three weekends in a row (turning 57, 30, and 26 respectively) that were full of seafood, chicken, and hamburgers on the grill (in that order). The weather has turned from white-hot to a paler, refreshing coolness that is heaven on my skin and for my eight-months-pregnant body.

To go along with the cooler weather (or sometimes as a retreat beneath the cool fans) I’ve been reading Nancy Mitford’s The Pursuit of Love and Love in a Cold Climate, stories that make me giggle about the weird Radlett children (the Mitfords in disguise) and their crazy societal pursuits in the teens and twenties in Britain. Upper class foibles and old customs galore! Just the kind of stuff I love. Last year I read Mary Lovell’s excellent Mitford biography, The Sisters, and waiting for me on the other end of the two Love stories is Frances Osborne’s The Bolter, a biography of Idina Sackville, alllegedly the inspiration for the Bolter in Nancy Mitford’s novels, but in her own right a terrible, fascinating woman who wreaked a bit of social havoc from the late Edwardian times into the Jazz Age. I can’t wait. There is something about this time period and this particular set of British under-nobility and notoriety that is delicious fun to read about, for me.

Another cooler-weather treat was that we had luscious baked eggplant in marinara with sausages. Baked eggplant in marinara has got to be one of the most amazing tastes. I have a baked eggplant parmesan recipe that I learned in Italy, which we loosely adapted: cut two eggplants in half lengthwise, and lay down in a baking dish on top of a couple spoonfuls of marinara. Ladle marinara sauce on top, and then top with slices of parmesan cheese. We tucked the sausages in around their sides, and one eggplant that we couldn’t quite fit into the dish was diced up small and put in with the sauce. A few whole cloves of garlic and leaves of fresh basil go quite nicely in this, too. Bake covered at 375 for 30-45 minutes or until fall-apart soft. By the time it is done cooking, the eggplant bits in the sauce will be sweet and tender, practically melting away and making even a sauce from a jar extra-special. I don’t have a picture, all I have are the leftovers to make me dream of making it again sometime soon! I know you’ll enjoy it too.

To go back to my most recent post, I have been living with and managing my gestational diabetes for nearly three weeks now. I’ve adjusted and tweaked my diet here and there, and become very methodical about taking a walk every morning after breakfast (especially handy for getting to know all the early-morning cats in my neighborhood!), and as a result my blood glucose numbers are looking pretty good. My husband and I were tremendously relieved to get the go-ahead from our midwives that we can continue with our planned homebirth. Aside from the thrill of being able to make it work, which surely taps into some sort of goody-goody student instinct in me to always get good grades, I am relieved that we do not have to go through the hassle of getting a prescription drug (or injectable insulin! eep!), getting to know a new doctor, having to hook into a whole new medical system at the hospital after getting to know our midwives’ practice for the last eight months. I know the birth of our daughter would be beautiful no matter where we go, but my gas bill and my diminished mental capacity to deal with New Stuff is breathing a sigh of relief that we don’t have to switch over to the hospital at this late stage.

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In a quiet morning moment today I took a picture of the baby’s crib (finally assembled!) that I can now see every time I exit the bedroom and head downstairs to start my day. It’s a good visual reminder (holy crap, a crib!) of what is coming, because sometimes it is so easy to get caught up in eating well, managing my sleepiness, going for walks and going to appointments, and forget that hey, there is a baby waiting at the end of all this. Some days that thought is a little freaky, but most of the time it’s a comfort to remember. We’ll have our own little bundle to snuggle at the end of this, all is not in vain. And I have just one more month of quiet to cherish before it happens. That part still leaves me in awe.

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