the day we found out {and coconut milk cupcakes}

"So do you already know what you’re having?” The ultrasound tech asked. 

"We’re here to find out!!" I said, maybe a little too enthusiastically. 

“Well okay, let’s see if your babe will cooperate today, but I’m warning you, it’s been a boy day today.” 

She squirted clear goo all over my tummy making a funny, empty ketchup bottle sound and pulled my pants down a little lower than comfortable.

She pressed the wand all over my stomach. A black and white picture came into view on a screen. She interpreted.  

"This is the head, these are the arms… you can see the beating heart right here." There were long pauses in between her explanations. Long pauses, that made me anxious. She kept typing things into the computer.

She must of felt my questions because she interrupted the silence with, 

 “Oh look! The baby's legs are crossed, I’m not sure if we can see what gender the baby is if those legs don’t come uncrossed.” She pressed and wiggled the wand around my tummy a little bit more trying to get the babe to reveal it's secret. This went on for an eternal minute.  

 “Ooup!”  She paused the picture and pointed to something that could only be a tiny little wee. 

“It’s a boy?” I said.

“It’s a boy!” she said back. 

I turned to John as if he didn’t hear. “It’s a boy.” He smiled and grabbed my hand, repeating those same three words in disbelief. 

On our car drive down to the doctor, John recorded asking me some questions; My feelings as to what I thought we were having, a boy or girl so we could get it on record. 

I totally and completely, no doubt in my mind thought girl. He did too. So did my mom. (She already bought stuff). I come from a line of oldest girls in the family and I just totally thought that would continue…and ever since I can remember I always pictured me holding a little baby girl first. 

So, the shock of a boy is still sinking in. I may or may not have cried about it. That probably makes me sound like a terrible person, but boys feel like so much more pressure. I feel like boys don’t like their moms. I feel like boys need their dads and have special bonds with their dads….. And did I mention I feel like boys don’t like their moms? 

These thoughts are irrational and unwarranted. All the men in my life love their moms. But still, I fear raising a boy so much more than I fear raising a girl. 

I wrote my sister an email about this, confessing my overwhelming number of fears with raising a boy and she wrote back this: 

“You need to chill. You just need to do yoga and breathe. And remember, you can have what you want, or you can have something better. God knows what you need more than you do.” It was something only a sister could say to another sister, and laugh-cried reading it. Pregnancy hormones are real. 

Any advice on raising a boy is appreciated. Love you friends. xo

 

coconut milk cupcakes

makes 24 cupcakes or one 2 layer 8 inch cake 

We took a family wager as soon as we announced our pregnancy to see what everyone thought we were having. Since my dad is the only one who predicted I'd have a boy from the start, I thought it was only appropriate to make his favorite cake to celebrate the big gender reveal. Although I hated telling him he was right, because we frequently have contests about that sort of thing... who's right and who's wrong, and he was SO right this time. My intuition feels bruised.

note: I use real coconut milk in both the cake batter and the frosting as well as unsweetened coconut to top it all off. It's sweet enough without being sugary. The problem with most coconut cakes to me is the only part that's coconutty is the shredded coconut on the outside. The coconut milk takes it to a new level. It's subtle but good; it's also really, really easy. Just make sure you pour the coconut milk out of its container and whisk it all together in a bowl before adding it to your cake. xo

 

cake:

1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) / 340g unsalted butter, softened 

2 cups / 400g organic sugar 

4 large eggs, room temperature and beaten slightly 

2 teaspoons vanilla 

3 cups / 375g organic, unbleached all purpose flour* see tip below

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder 

1/2 teaspoon baking soda 

1/2 teaspoon salt 

1 cup / 240g full fat coconut milk, completely whisked together (it tends to separate in the can) 

1 1/3 cups /  67g unsweetened finely shredded coconut 

frosting: 

1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice (no more, no less)

1 teaspoon vanilla

3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened 

1/2 teaspoon salt 

3 1/4 cup / 420g powdered sugar 

1/4 cup / 60g full fat coconut milk, completely whisked together (it tends to separate in the can) 

2 cups / 100g unsweetened, shredded coconut, reserved 

 

Preheat oven to 350° F / 180° C  Line two, 12-cup cupcake pans with liners or two 8 inch cake pans with parchment paper and grease with butter + flour. (If making cupcakes you do not need to grease the liners.)  

Sift all dry ingredients together in a large bowl: *flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. *When measuring the flour, don't scoop the flour with your measuring cup, gently spoon the flour into your measuring cup with a different utensil to ensure the right amount of flour into your cakes. 

Beat softened butter with sugar until light and fluffy, about 5-7 minutes. 

Add eggs one at a time until incorporated. 

Add little coconut milk and a little bit of the dry ingredients in alternating  3-4 batches until all combined. 

Fold in shredded coconut, being careful not to over mix. 

Fill cupcake liners a generous 3/4th's of the way up and bake for 20-25 minutes. Cupcakes should be slightly golden brown. 

Cool completely before frosting. 

 

to make frosting: 

Beat softened butter with powdered sugar and salt until light and fluffy, about 5-7 minutes. 

In a separate bowl (preferably with a spout so it's easy to pour), whisk coconut milk with vanilla and lemon juice. 

Slowly add the wet coconut mixture to the butter mixture, beating slowly until combined. 

The frosting can be soft. That's okay. Stick it in the fridge to thicken up a bit if you like. I usually leave mine in there for an hour before frosting, but you don't have to. The cooling just makes it a bit easier to manage. 

Dip each frosted cupcake in shredded unsweetened coconut and serve. 

These keep for up to 3 days in an airtight container. They're best eaten the day or the day after they're made.

 

time saving tip: You can easily freeze the baked cupcakes, and let them thaw to room temperature, then frost. The frosting keeps in the fridge for up to a week in an air tight container. xo 

 

why is this good for me? 

coconut - has fatty acids that help our bodies fight off bad bacteria, viruses from urinary tract infections to the flu to gum disease. It also contains anti fungal properties that help fight fungus disorders like athlete's foot. It's also an awesome good fat. A fat that nourishes our brains and boosts our metabolisms. It's also delicious.