It’s official. I am the luckiest post-partum mommy around. I have had the pleasure of having my 90-year old grandmother, Grandma Lou, in town from Iowa, and I’ve been devouring her always DELISH baked goods for the past five days. From her famous Swedish Rye Bread, Swedish Cinnamon Rolls (these put Cinnabon to shame!), Swedish Pancakes (my ultimate favorite since I was a kid…I once ate 12 in one sitting), and her Ranger Cookies (the BEST cookie you will ever sink your teeth into!), our mouths and bellies have been quite busy. And if you couldn’t tell by the names, she is Swedish. (She even lives in a town called “Swedesburg,” She also travels the world, takes selfies, rides her bike everyday, and texts with all of her grandchildren from her iPhone. Not bad for a 90-year old, eh?)
Now, I’ve been making her famous recipes for years, but for some reason, they never taste the same as when my grandma makes them. Don’t get me wrong, whenever I bake one of her recipes, I am suddenly the most popular person on the planet and deal with endless requests to bake more. However, for some reason – probably from the 70 – 80+ years she’s had to perfect them – hers just have that extra ‘grandma’s touch.’ (My husband agrees. In fact, whenever we visit Iowa, his first stop is always Grandma Lou’s kitchen. His personal favorites include her apple pie and the famous Ranger Cookies.)
To share our family’s absolute favorite version of the ranger cookie, here is my grandma’s Ranger Cookie recipe. WARNING: They are extremely addictive!
1 Cup White Sugar
1 Cup Brown Sugar
1 Cup Shortening (soft)
2 Cups of flour
1 tsp Baking Powder
1 tsp. Baking Soda
1 Cup flaked coconut
1/2 Tsp. salt
2 Cups Rolled Oats
2 Cups Kellogg’s Corn Flakes
1 Tsp Vanilla Extract
Cream shortening and sugar, add beaten eggs and vanilla. Combine dry ingredients and add shortening mixture. Drop from tsp to ungreased cookie sheet and bake at 350 for 12-15 minutes. ENJOY!
Welcome to the world, Anders Reyn Ribeiro! Our little bundle of joy was born on April 30th at 6:16am weighing in at 7.7 lbs and 19 inches. He is a little beauty with his daddy’s features, his mommy’s blue eyes, and a very chill and pleasant disposition. We couldn’t be more blessed and excited to add this little angel to our growing family.
My first labor was 48-hours, 36 of which I spent attempting to have a natural childbirth. With the recommendation of my doctor and husband, I finally gave in and received an epidural. This time around, I was in labor for nine hours, which, compared to my first labor, seemed like minutes. One thing that was the same, however, was the pure joy experienced at the sight of seeing my baby open his eyes for the very first time. It’s truly amazing to see your baby search for your familiar voice as they open their tiny little eyelids. What a powerful moment we as parents have the pleasure of experiencing! That was one of the many milestone moments during those first hours that I was sure to soak in as much as I could.
Fortunately, since his birth, Anders has been a dream baby. Breastfeeding is going great. He poops, pees, and sleeps all like a champ. It’s been easier on me since I feel more laid back this time around. I let Anders sleep as long as he wants during the night rather than waking him every 3-4 hours like I did religiously with my firstborn. I don’t constantly check on Anders’s chest to make sure he’s still breathing throughout the night. (Oh the paranoia I had with my first baby after reading about all of those horror stories!) Needless to say, I feel better equipped to enjoy the little things with Anders. I find myself constantly taking more moments to smell his head knowing that sweet newborn smell doesn’t last forever. I find myself admiring just how teeny-tiny this beautiful little being is. (Perhaps I’m just accustomed to carrying my 18-month old everywhere, but Anders just feels like a little peanut.) I even take a moment to appreciate how quiet a newborn can be, especially compared to a toddler!
Speaking of my toddler, we’ve experienced some challenges with AJ adjusting to the new baby. We had hoped our efforts preparing him would be helpful, but 18-months is still quite young to expect him to understand. Up until today, he had been acting out with never-before-seen tantrums that usually started after witnessing me nurse Anders. He routinely gives me the ‘sad eyes’ look anytime he notices me holding or singing to Anders. And he simply just hasn’t been his normal self since the baby was born. Thankfully, I feel we had a breakthrough today as he attempted to put the pacifier in Ander’s mouth a few times when he cried, and he actually kissed the baby’s head. Both my husband and I erupted in pure joy – after a moment of shock, of course – and excitedly gave AJ ‘high-fives’ for his sweet gesture. After seeing how his kiss created praise, he kissed Anders again before resuming play with his toys. This was an enormous improvement based on his previous behavior. I truly hope this is a sign that we are finally heading down a road to success! Fingers crossed!