LHB

Thank you all for your prayers and support. He has been extubated today and is slowly moving his hands, legs and eyes. EEG monitoring for brain waves looks ok so far and doctors want to give him few more days to see if he gets back to his own self. As he has been on high dosage of multiple medicines they want to give him sometime to wean them off. He is still in ICU but hoping that he will move out of it in few days as his condition improves. Amma has reached yesterday to help us through this testing time.

I express my heartfelt gratitude for all your prayers. Please continue to keep him in your prayers. Thanks again.

LHB

LHB is terribly ill. He got seizures last weekend and admitted in hospital. He has been diagnosed with ADEM lesions in brain. First set of treatment of steroids did not work and now he is in ICU put on ventilation to sleep and rest his brain for 48 hours.

Please don’t ask me anything else as I myself don’t know what is next and also don’t have the strength. Doctors said one day at a time. Please please keep him in your prayers and send in positive vibes to him. The intention of this post is to get him as much as prayers as possible. Hoping the collective prayer to be answered. Thanks.

Happy 2nd

Dear LHB,

Where do I start? I am totally blank da. I can’t believe that you have been with us for past two years. You have changed all our life and transformed each one of us for good. We are not the same as we used to be before you came into our life. Your Akka will steal this post if I start to talk about her love for you but I can’t talk anything about you without her. Such is her influence on you! You want to follow her and repeat whatever she does. You want me to do it to you, whatever I do to her. Be it oiling her hair, checking her belly button. You will come next to me with your shirt rolled up for belly button check. Its a happy moment the three of us share every other day followed by laughter.

You have started full time daycare soon after turning one as we didn’t have the luxury to hold back Ammachi any longer. Appa was dropping and picking you up from the daycare so you would always run to him as you were so used to running to him every evening. When you were just getting comfortable with the daycare we shifted home. Yes, call us cruel parents. You continued to travel two hours round trip to the same daycare as India trip was around the corner and I didn’t want you to go through too many changes.

You went to India on three weeks trip with Appa. Gasp! You celebrated Diwali with kith and kin back home and had a whale of time enjoying the attention from both set of grandparents. We could see your happiness through Skype. Once back from India, you have started a new daycare near our new home. This time, I was mostly doing the drop/pick-up job and you slowly started running towards me. That meant so much to me and I started to look forward to those moments.

You have never been a demanding baby. You go very easily with the flow. We don’t do anything special for you, yet you take most of our time. The Florida road trip proved how well you adapt to situation. We never thought even in our wildest dreams that a JetSki could be your best cradle. You dozed off within minutes after boarding the JetSki and gave very hard time to Appa.

It is very easy to make you laugh and pacify you. All you need is a tight hug. You are very good at complaining. You go near the other person in vicinity, pull her/his shirt and point at the person bothering you with your index finger. We pretend to support you and questioning the other person.  The pride is your face at that precise moment is worth a million da!

You talk a lot but just that we are not able to understand any of them yet except your “noo nii”. You use it when you are upset and your teacher helped us to realize that it means “Not nice”. Then, you say Hi, Bye, My (especially when Akka tries to snatch stuff from you). Words like Amma, Appa and Akka are still waiting for your attention!

Though you are not clearly pronouncing words, you are very clear with gestures. You can point head, nose, eyes, hand, diaper. Give Hi-Fi and you kiss generously and give a big bear hug when asked for!

Whenever you see me opening cupboard in the Kitchen, you will come running to me for your share of Bournvita. You patiently wait fiddling with your fingers until I take the bottle out, open it and take a spoonful out and feed you.

You are still a total daddy’s boy. Your favorite pastime is to wet Appa’s face. Ewwww would be Akka and my reaction and run away as soon as we can.  You spend most of your evenings with Appa at upstairs bedroom when Akka and I are occupied with our chores downstairs. By the time, we come upstairs you will be in your snoozeland. This routine makes it very slow to build our relationship. What rush? Slow and steady. We will be there someday da!

You eat if you like it and feel like eating it. No one can force you. Period. Amma has learned to accept this fact. I am yet to find out your favorite food as you are a man of moods. The dish that you will polish off within minutes will not even be touched the other time. You eat better when I feed you and Akka from same plate and you will be very clear and specific on whose turn it is and do a mock cry when I try to feed Akka two times in a row.

You have been on two courses of antibiotics within two months this year. It was to treat ear infection. I hope you don’t get it anymore. It is very hard to see you all curled up, the otherwise bubbly boy.

Your favorite time is to watch youtube videos by lying down on the bed with hands behind your head on either side and legs crossed. Appa claims that is his relaxing posture. This is how we engage you when something else cries for our attention. I know, not the best way to engage you!

I want to repeat this on all your birthday letters. Don’t even think about hurting your Akka for fun. She loves you above and beyond! She is the sole reason behind us buying last minute ready to bake cake mix and make goodie bags for your class friends. She has been nagging me for past one month about the plans. She has single handedly packed the goodie bags last evening and its all ready to go. She forced me to bake the cake on 3rd evening itself as she didn’t have much homework on that day. So, we baked zebra cake and then decided to cut it on 3rd night itself with both set of grandparents online on Skype as technically it was 4th morning at India. You will take choco chip mini muffins, orange juice and goodie bags to school.

Feb2014

Here is a song she composed specially for you when you were born. She hates when I sing along and says this is a special song only to be sung by her for you!

 
Lyrics goes like this “I love you, yes I do, who do I love more than you? Nobodyyy!!!” She means it da!

Wishing you a healthy and happy year ahead! You are a lovely boy. Stay the same always kanna.

Love,
Amma

P.S: For new readers benefit, LHB stands for Little Honey Bun. Adi came up with this name for her brother.

 

Those few minutes

As I was about to board the train yesterday evening, a man was trying to step out and he passed out. Half of his body was inside the train car and half on the station platform. All around were panicked and frozen. Two gentlemen helped to pull him out to the platform and one of them went ahead to check his pulse. This gentleman quickly stuffed all his things into his backpack, knelled down on the platform to go face to face with the man and tried to check his basic reflex. By that time, the train authorities came by and took over the situation. The gentleman informed the authorities that he is breathing. He then boarded the train and the train moved so was our life. I wanted to appreciate his kind act but couldn’t with my own inhibitions. People around appreciated him and he shrugged his shoulder with “I didn’t do anything”.. Hope the man has been taken care and is safe now. God bless this gentleman! I will never forget his face. The funny part is the man had “fall risk” band on his wrist. Obviously, but that was noticed only after he fell. The gentleman was expecting to see his name on the band and instead saw “fall risk”.

Those few minutes made me question everything about life. What will happen if I get a call all of a sudden about my loved one’s life being at risk? What is the point in holding on to our ego so tight, fighting for trivial things and getting worried about things that we don’t have control on?  I fantasized about an ego free, status free, rat race free, s**t free world for few minutes. Then, I realized there is indeed a world like that.

Did you guess it already?

What if it is virtual? Got it now? I am talking about the world you and me are part of.

That is the blog world where we have the liberty to share our opinions, connect with like minded people, stand for each other through tough times, encourage each other with our kind words with no ego, no status or no rat race or no comparison. We all have our own little world in the name of blog and respect each other’s space genuinely. There is no reason to mock. And I feel it is this unadulterated happy feeling that is bringing us all together beginning of every year for the blogathon no matter how crazy our life is.

Simply put, I make resolutions every year. I want to bring in fitness in my daily routine, I want to nurture my hobby but failing at all of them miserably for years where as I readily jump into the idea of blogathon with no second thought and even complete it not giving up. I create time for blogathon which I am not able to do for my other long pending list. That explains It all. Simple.

I am glad to be associated with blogathon for past three years. I feel very happy and proud today.

Long live blogathon!! Long live our connections!! See you all next year :)

Seema – big big thanks to you for facilitating the blogathon this year!!

Veggie Sandwich

Cross-posted at IMC

One more kids lunch box special. This has been a hit at our home and I pack this at least once a week for Adi’s school lunch.

Ingredients:

Wheat/Whole grain bread or any bread of your choice
Mixed chopped vegetables (I usually buy the store bought pre cut mix of carrots, beans, peas and corn kernels)
Potatoes – half (chopped into small cubes)
Jeera powder – 1 teaspoon
Pepper powder – 1 teaspoon
Turmeric powder – 1/2 teaspoon
Salt – as needed
Tomato ketchup – as needed
Butter – as needed 

veg-sandwich

Method:

1. Saute the veggies in pan until they are well cooked.
2. Add the spices when veggies are half cooked.
3. Mix in the ketchup after switching off the stove and allow it to cool down.
4. Pre-heat the sandwich maker. I would strongly recommend to invest on a good sandwich maker if you are packing lunch for your kids.
5. Stuff the breads with the veggie mix and press it in the sandwich maker.
6. Spread some butter on both of the sandwich once they are out of the maker. Trust me, this final touch of butter adds a nice flavor and does wonders.

And here is picture of my salad especially for you smdeea11. I had it for lunch today and remmebered to click a picture :)

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Florida and Bahamas Trip – Day 8 and 9

1st Jan - Today’s plan was to visit Kennedy Space Center – the commercial visitor complex of NASA. We enjoyed the beach view from hotel room balcony for some time in the morning and then packed our bags and reached KSC by 9:30am. We even thought of extending the stay in this hotel but then decided not to for practical reasons. All day was spent at NASA exploring about shuttles, hubble – the telescope, took a close-up tour of a launchpad and experienced psuedo shuttle launch ride. For the shuttle launch, scary cat Adi came with me till the spot we were about to board the shuttle and then stepped back. So, we had to step out from the line. Then, later the day I tried it alone by myself while the rest of the family spent their time happily at angry birds encounter. I hope at least LHB will give me company in trying adventurous sports/rides after few years. KSC was worth a day trip and loaded with information.

We left KSC around 6pm and then made an impromptu visit to our friend’s home at Orlando. They have moved to Orlando from NJ few months ago and have a newborn. Had a nice chit chat and ate simple dal rice for dinner that tasted heavenly. Nothing can beat home food I say. We stayed at their home for the night.

2nd Jan – Started our sojourn back to home at 8am. We decided to drive as much as possible during daytime and then take a break if required. M drove most of the day, we had bagel/creamcheese/bread/fruit spread for breakfast and ice cold pasta/pizza for lunch (remember the leftover from pizza hut). Just took few short breaks whenever LHB was cranky and covered a very good distance by late evening. I learned to feed the kids lesser while in commute. I saw at least few breakdown vehicles and accidents en-route. It was scary. One honda odyssey was upside down and police was just off-loading the passengers from the upside down vehicle. By late evening, we were around 6 hours away from home and I didn’t feel like spending another night at the hotel. That will only extend our trip and make it hectic to prepare for the coming week. So, I tookover from M and drove the rest of the distance to home. We reached home sweet home at 2am and crashed on the bed.

Next day was Saturday and we saw daylight at 11am. The next two days was spent with washing, cleaning, cooking and preparing for the week ahead. And in no time, we were pulled into the boring aka routine life.

I don’t know if we will do a trip like this ever again and I have no clue what made us go on this crazy trip. But, after this trip I got a new respect for our car that brought us back home safe and sound. This will remain as one of the memorable family trip for many many reasons and I am glad that I was able to write the details down in this blog for posterity.

The End.

You all are freed now and thank you so much for reading this series :)

Please do email/comment here if you any questions on Cruise. I will try to help with my little experience.

 

No longer Friend

Dusting from the drafts after a long time. This happened around an year ago. I had a friend who became very close to all in the family in a very short time. Very close that we were meeting and chatting every day. She is a crafty person and jumped into the idea when I discussed with her about my plan for Adi’s birthday. We discussed in the coming weeks, she shared few ideas and I slowly started to believe that she will give me a big hand during the party. Every time I had a new idea I would immediately share it with her looking for her acknowledgement. Amma agreed to engage LHB so I wanted another helping hand during party to make crafts, organize games and make cake pop with the girls. I was also constantly reminding her for more than a month that I would need her help on the d day. Every time we meet, party ideas was the main topic of discussion and I would jump like a small kid when new ideas were born.

Fast forward to the day before party. I made a breakdown plan of party time and shared it with her and that’s when she said “she is planning to go for shopping next day morning”. She added “the party is at 1pm right? I should be back by then”. I didn’t know how to react as I was looking for her help for arrangements in the morning too. M says I should have said it loud to her that I was looking for her presence in the morning. I had a lump in my throat and didn’t say anything to her. Later the day she helped with decorating cake but still I was not able to appreciate it. She also offered to give her house keys to me so that I can use the space for the party in cars if she comes back home late. I got totally pissed off with that offer. Seriously, is that the help I was looking for? I agree that my house was very small back then but I was able to well accommodate six girls in that tiny space. What I was looking for was more of an emotional support, just to be around with me and help me if needed. Sometimes, just the presence of someone would give us the confidence. I was looking for that kind of support to not feel left out and pressurized. Just to give me a helping hand.

On party day, she made a quick visit at around 3pm to see how things are progressing and disappeared in minutes. I felt so helpless and that’s when “do-it-if-you-can-manage-by-yourself” M came to my rescue. He was out the whole morning too and when returned asked me surprisingly if my friend didn’t come to help me. May be, he noticed the panic on my face. I will be ever grateful to him for his act on that day. He helped me with everything when I was this close to call it off. The emotional stress was too much to handle than the physical one.

Things were never the same between us from then. I couldn’t talk normally to her. Not at all. I pulled myself out completely from that relationship. I crushed the plans I had for Adi’s summer break involving her. Its probably the expectation and dejection following that. The wound was too deep to forget and forgive. I neither responded to her messages nor tried to contact her after we moved to new place.. I cannot maintain hi-bye personal relationship with someone I truly liked. I treated her more like my own sister.

Did I have very high expectation? All I ask myself often is why did she ditch me at last minute? How can I trust her again? Did I do anything wrong? I don’t know but all I know for sure is I cannot reestablish my relationship with her ever again!! It’s a glass broken. Can’t be fixed.

It has taken me almost an year to get it out of my system. Pheww!!!