What I've Been Up to Lately

What I've Been Up to Lately | Freckled Italian

Happy Wednesday! My mom got here on Friday and it's been so nice having her here to help us out with keeping the house clean and the laundry under control (plus she's gotten lots of Sophie snuggles in while I've been able to take a few naps).

Life is looking so different already, so I thought I'd share a list of what I've been up to lately:

  • Going to bed as early as possible--Rob takes Sophie from about 9 PM until she wakes up screaming to be fed between midnight and 1 AM, which means I get 3 uninterrupted hours of sleep before we're up every few hours with her. I never thought I'd be so thankful for such a tiny amount of shut-eye, but I really am.
  • Making lattes every morning, sometimes as early as 5:30 AM. Sophie and I are morning people, what can I say? (Although I think at this point she's both a morning person and a night owl.)
  • Not walking Ender as much as I thought we would--I'm having some really terrible back and hip pain which is making getting around a real challenge. The past few days I've been spending as much time on the couch as I can.
  • Feeling ridiculously thankful for Rob's incredible family benefits and lengthy paternity leave.
  • Becoming really good friends with my breast pump--I had no idea making bottles would be so satisfying (especially because it means Rob can feed the baby while I snooze a little longer).
  • Cruising through a few new-to-me shows on Netflix in the middle of the night: Friends from College and The Big Family Cooking Showdown.
  • So. Much. Laundry.

That's it for now! What have you been up to lately? Hope things are going well for all of you out in the real world! 

Recipe: My Mom's Holiday Cookies

This post is sponsored by La Crema Winery.

Holiday Cookie Recipes | Freckled Italian

For as long as I can remember, my mom has made some of the best holiday cookies--these delicious shortbread cookies dipped in chocolate and dusted with nuts (she always used a half-moon cookie cutter that I absolutely loved as a kid); some walnut balls dusted in powdered sugar; and, last but certainly not least, some simple but oh-so-delicious biscotti.

I'm super excited to be partnering with La Crema Winery again--I shared the recipe for those first two cookies I just mentioned on their blog right here! And you can keep reading for the biscotti:

Mom's Holiday Biscotti


  • Half a stick of butter
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon anise seeds
  • 1 teaspoon anise extract
  • 1 cup of chopped nuts (optional)


  1. In a large bowl, cream together the eggs and sugar. Add melted butter and mix to combine. 
  2. Add the sifted flour and baking powder and mix gently to combine--batter will be thick. Add the anise seeds and extract as well as the chopped nuts if you want them. Use your hands to combine batter and pat it into a nice ball of dough.
  3. Cover the bowl and transfer to freezer for about half an hour, or until it's less runny and easier to handle.
  4. Preheat oven to 350. Roll the dough into two "ropes" the length of the cookie sheet and bake at 350 for 15-20 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from oven, cut diagonally, loosen gently with the spatula, and return to the oven for another 5-10 minutes. Serve warm with coffee, tea, or a glass of wine--it is the holidays, after all.
Holiday Cookie Recipes | Freckled Italian
Holiday Cookie Recipes | Freckled Italian

Make sure to stop by the La Crema blog today to get the rest of our holiday cookie recipes!

Holiday Cookie Recipes | Freckled Italian

This is a Birth Announcement

This is a Birth Announcement | Freckled Italian

She's here! Our daughter Sophie showed up right on her due date last Tuesday and we've been in a haze of snuggles and slightly interrupted sleep since then. She's adorable and makes hilarious facial expressions and she smells so good and we just love her so much already.

We've been home for five days now and I'm still pretty sore from a long labor and delivery, but Rob and Ender and I are finding our rhythm as a family of four and loving every minute taking care of this little girl.

Welcome to the family, Sophie Ray--we're so incredibly happy you're here.