Tuesday, June 29, 2004

Power of voodoo. Who do? You do. Do what? Remind me of the baby.

In case you were wondering what we're having for dinner tonight:

Nearly 300 baby pictures decorate Scalini's old-fashioned Italian restaurant in Cobb County, Ga.

All of the babies pictured on the Italian restaurant wall were born after their mothers ate the Scalini's eggplant parmigiana. The $9.95 plate of breaded eggplant smothered in cheese and thick marinara sauce is "guaranteed" to induce labor, the restaurant claims.

The eggplant legend began not long after the restaurant opened 23 years ago.

"Two or three years after we began, a few people had just mentioned to us they came in when they were pregnant, and ate this eggplant and had a baby a short time after that," said John Bogino, who runs the restaurant with his son, Bobby Bogino. "One person told another, and it just grew by itself by leaps and bounds."

To date, more than 300 of the pregnant women customers who ordered the eggplant have given birth within 48 hours, and the restaurant dubs them the "eggplant babies." If it doesn't work in two days, the moms-to-be get a gift certificate for another meal.

Good Morning America certainly isn't making any promises, but the restaurant has graciously shared the recipe.

Eggplant Parmigiana Alla Scalini's


• 3 medium sized eggplants
• 1 cup flour
• 6 eggs, beaten
• 4 cups fine Italian bread crumbs, seasoned
• Olive oil for sautéing
• 8 cups of marinara sauce (recipe below)
• 1/2 cup grated Romano cheese
• 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
• 1 1/2 pounds of mozzarella cheese, shredded
• 2 cups of ricotta cheese


1. After you wash the eggplant, slice them into ¼-inch thick slices. You may choose to peel the eggplant before you slice it. However, you may want to leave the skin on since it contains a lot of vitamins.
2. Place the eggplant slices on a layer of paper towels and sprinkle with a little salt, then cover with another layer of paper towels and hold it down with something heavy to drain the excess moisture. Let them sit for about an hour.
3. Working with one slice of eggplant at a time, dust with flour, dip in beaten eggs, then coat well with breadcrumbs.
4. Sauté in preheated olive oil on both sides until golden brown.
5. In baking dish, alternate layers of marinara sauce, eggplant slices, ricotta, parmesan and Romano cheeses, until you fill the baking dish, about 1/8 inch from the top. Cover with shredded mozzarella cheese, and bake for 25 minutes in a 375 degree oven. Let sit for 10 minutes before serving.

Scalini's Marinara Sauce


• 2 Tablespoons of chopped garlic
• 3 Tablespoons of olive oil
• 8 cups chopped tomatoes (fresh or canned)
• 1 cup onions, chopped
• 1/2 cup of fresh chopped parsley
• 1 teaspoon oregano
• 1 teaspoon of crushed red pepper
• 1/8 cup of fresh chopped sweet basil
• Pinch of thyme
• Pinch of rosemary
• One teaspoon salt
• One teaspoon black pepper


1. Lightly sauté the onions in olive oil in large pot for a few minutes.
2. Add garlic and sauté another minute.
3. Add tomatoes and bring sauce to a boil, then turn heat low.
4. Add remaining ingredients, stir, cover and let simmer for one hour, stirring occasionally.

Recipe courtesy of John Bogino, Scalini's Italian Restaurant, Smyrna, Ga. (scalinis.com)

OK, a) I do not believe in this stuff at all. b) I am contemplating leaving in the onions though I LOATHE onions with a passion ordinarily reserved for Sean Hannity sound bites and stepping on slugs with bare feet.

Because what if the onions interact with the other ingredients and THAT is what makes it work? One can't afford to mess around with one's voodoo, you know.


Monday, June 28, 2004

This isn't just any dog park

An interesting fact about our doings yesterday is that the dog park we visited (part of a large park in the eastern suburbs called Marymoor) is 40 acres. It is really fun, with plenty of tall grass where Betty gets to show off what she was bred to do-- root around in the brush to (vainly) flush out birds, and do this graceful run, which is part sprinting, part bounding like a pogo stick. This allows her to take a peek for birds and direction while running through the brush. The park also is bordered by the Sammamish River. This place is a 15 mintue drive, but closer to our house is a still very large dog park that features a half-mile walk to Lake Washington. Nice to have parks that pander so much to dog owners. This is really a dog city-- they are even allowed to ride the bus. It's fun to watch Betty interact with the other dogs, all of whom miraculously get along pretty well. Fortunately, we sternly put a stop to her brief habit of putting her paws up on small children at the dog park, which is a great relief. Though I do wonder about parents who bring their toddlers--I mean, kids who can barely walk--to stumble around unprotected amid a lawless pack of mongrel dogs... Maybe that will be me someday, but I doubt it.

- M

Sunday, June 27, 2004

Due date plus 1

She has 28 minutes left to show up on her due date. I'm going to go ahead and guess no, but hey, you never know.

We didn't make it to Fahrenheit 9/11, but we did go to the dog park for 2 hours (walking ostensibly gets babies thinking moving thoughts), finally leading the kind of lifestyle Betty has always thought we should.


Happy Due Date, Baby

Now get out. Today is the due date, but all is quiet on the western coast.

We may go see Fahrenheit 9/11 today. I am curious to see what seems convincing and what doesn't. But mostly I am looking forward to the footage, which doesn't lie. Unless edited, I suppose.

Sleeping for S is still a challenge. But we nap when we can.

- M

Saturday, June 26, 2004

It is magnificent in its sheer size

Shown here in its natural habitat, the 40 week belly rests peacefully. Its considerable heft allows it to remain at the top of the food chain simply by smooshing its prey. Posted by Hello

Friday, June 25, 2004

Still No Baby, Part II

It is late Friday night, and we there has been little progress. We have been to the doctor twice this week, and things look fine, but there is no telling when it will come. S did get a little sleep last night, which makes the waiting more bearable. She continues to have periodic contractions. Her belly is so taut you could bounce a quarter off it. She says, "like it always is."

- M

Thursday, June 24, 2004

Still no baby

That's right, still no baby.

Being full term pregnant really isn't so bad- I'm used to the change in size, and the heat induced swelling has all but disappeared. Maybe it's being pregnant in summer in Seattle? At any rate, I'm excited to meet the baby, but this is fine, too. The contractions haven't gotten more or less intense, so I still haven't slept since Monday, which is a bit of a bear, but there are worse things.

- S

Tuesday, June 22, 2004

Something's going on around here

S started having contractions last night around 12:00am. We stayed up quite awhile, then tried to sleep between them, with some success. It was easier for me! They were pretty regular, and then from 3 to 5 a.m., they were about 3 to 5 minutes apart, which is really close, but they did not get more intense. S fell asleep between 5:30 and 9:30, and we have been taking it easy this morning. I didn't go into work, which is great-- vacation day! They have become very sporadic, and we haven't seen some of the other key signs of active labor, so I may go into work for the afternoon.

Today is our anniversary, so our theory is that the baby is waiting until after our anniversary dinner at our favorite restaurant, Carmelita. It has GREAT vegetarian food, and is right next to our old apartment. Happy two-year anniversary to us. Hopefully, the baby can hold off so that we don't steal each other's thunder.

- M

Sunday, June 20, 2004

Father's Day

It was a record high today of 88 degrees. This made it uncomfortable for S to be so pregnant. In order to escape the heat, we went to see "The Terminal." (We liked it, despite my spilling half a tub of coke on the floor.) It turned out to be a movie about waiting-- how appropriate. But the waiting is almost over. 90% of babies are born within one week of their due date, and we are now one week away from that. We are getting very excited.

Yesterday, we went to see my cousins, and they were kind enough to lend us a baby swing, a seat and disk that the baby sits in, and a backpack for the baby to sit in when we go out or maybe even go on little hikes. Oh, and lots of great clothes. There is a lot of stuff you apparently need or can use as a parent, and it is great to get helping hands from so many quarters.

- M

This is Betty. Betty has no idea the havoc about to be wreaked on her perfectly Bettycentric universe. Let's take a moment to sigh for Betty. Awww. Posted by Hello

Coming soon Posted by Hello

Wednesday, June 16, 2004

Welcome to our weblog

We plan to post news and pictures of the newest member of the babystocracy on this site. Check back occasionally to see what is new in our soon-to-be expanded family.

Our due date is June 27th. But be aware, only 5% of babies are born on their actual due date. Could be tomorrow, could be two weeks afterward. But we're ready now. Free the baby! Free the baby! Free the baby!