My apologies for playing hooky the last few weeks. On Jan. 21 at 7:20 am I became a grandmother for the very first time. And yes, it is everything that everyone describred it would be.
There was absolutely nothing like that feeling — of seeing the child that you gave birth to having a child of his own.
The first time I set my eyes upon my granddaughter, it was about two hours after she was born. I know at that point she was not able to see anything, but her eyes were wide open and it was as if she was following her saba and me. It was so wonderful to hold her in my arms, a feeling that I just can’t describe. Although it took her over 24 hours to make her appearance, via a C-section, she looked absolutely beautiful.
After visiting with the new mom, Darya; my son, Jeremy; and the guest of honor, adorable Arielle Emma (Rifka Miriam), it was time to let them get some needed rest.
Darya’s parents, our wonderful mechatonim, Bonnie and Igal, Darya’s sisters and my kids sat in the waiting room gushing about how adorable she was. While other grandparents in the waiting room were equally gushing about how beautiful their grandchildren were, our’s, of course, was the cutest!
My job now is to entertain my granddog, Penny, for the next week, and convince her to be gentle with her new baby sister … or else, as my son let me know, she’d be living with me.
As much as I love my granddogs, there’s no way I could have dogs of my own because of the guilt I have when I have to leave them by themselves. I brought home a blanket that the baby was swaddled in, and let Penny play on it and get used to the scent, so that she would recognize it when she met the baby for the first time.
Not only was I a grandmother, but my mom a’h now had a grandchild named after her. Rifka was my mom’s name, and Miriam was Darya’s grandmother’s name. Rifka Miriam, named after two wonderful women.
Times changed since I had my first child Daniel, almost 32 years ago. In those days the only things we did differently during pregnancy was abstain from artificial sweeteners and alcohol. Today expectant mothers refrain from eating tuna fish and basically almost every other fish, just to be safe. Most things are better off natural with no preservatives and no additives. There weren’t hundreds of books and articles filling you in on every detail.
So much has changed. We were excited back then, by the ultrasound picture of our fetus that could have been an image of anything. We made believe, though, that it looked something like a baby. Today they have 3-D ultrasound photos with amazing details. You can even estimate how many grams your fetus likely weighs at any given time.
And let’s not forget the gadgets that cater to the expectant moms. Pregnancy pillows to cushion their ever-growing waists, brain-stimulating music to play to the babes in utero, etc. Women are now encouraged to exercise, do prenatal yoga and meditate.
Once in the hospital, you can choose what type of birth you prefer. Soft lights, calming music and water births. Call me old fashioned, but I like the idea of having all that modern medicine offers, just case there is a need for it in an emergency, G-d forbid. These babies will grow into teenagers and blast their music and love bright lights. I say, let them get used to it now!
So welcome to the world, Arielle Emma aka Rifka Miriam. I look forward to loving you, spoiling you, babysitting for you, and watching you grow.
PS: Penny loves her little sister and is very protective of her!
Talking about babies, this is an easy recipe for babies and everyone else as well.
Veggie Quinoa Baby Bites
By Becky’s Best Bites
1 cup red or tri colored quinoa
1 cup shredded zucchini
1 cup shredded carrots
1/4 cup chopped parsley
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
Cook quinoa according to package instructions. Remove from heat and let cool. Preheat oven to 350 F. Spray 2 mini muffin pans (24 count) with nonstick cooking spray or use silicone mini muffin pans and set aside. In a large mixing bowl combine cooked quinoa, zucchini, carrots, parsley, cheese and eggs. Spoon mixture into mini muffin pans.
Bake in the oven for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.These muffins freeze beautifully.