Archive | January 2019

Work, work, work

Today has been an ALL day work day with very little break. Thankfully I worked from home so didn’t have to spend time in travel that would have prolonged the work time.

It started at 9am and ended at 10:30pm with probably a maximum of 30 mins break. But, I feel very satisfied as I was able to provide solution to a time sensitive critical issue and bring it to closure.

I have so many happenings from last year to write about but keep procrastinating it by just conveniently writing about current happenings. Can’t believe we already crossed 10 days in blogathon.

Good night to you all!



Parents are returning to India from my brother’s home today. This was a totally unplanned visit. Its a long story, they travelled with my brother’s family in summer to support as my brother’s family had an emergency while we all were in India.

Amma is still not able to come to terms with the fact that she left to US while I was in India. However, she was okay as she already made all the podi’s (masala powders) for me and packed them neatly. I stayed at the in-laws for 3 weeks and the way my extended maternal family tried to fill in the gap of Amma is commendable. My aunt came to see me with fresh milk that was just milked few hours ago. Her daughter packed sweets and savories for me to take back to US. My cousin visited us the day we were returning to US with sweet box and jasmine flowers. He actually chased our car and met us on our way to the airport. I am truly blessed.

And I went off track!!! Coming back, as LHB has turned into a troublesome monster after India trip and we couldn’t just handle him and kids had two more weeks of holidays before school starts and winter was approaching soon, parents visited us in late August and spent some time with kids to make up for the time missed in India. It deserves a separate post about what we did in that one month visit. They flew back to brother’s before winter started and today they are flying back to their own nest back home.

It is going to take a week or two for my brother’s family to cope up with the absence of parents. It seems yesterday evening my nephew dusted the chess board to have one last game with thatha and niece baked special cookies for Patti. The poor kids are going to come to an empty home after school today. At least Amma will live with them virtually in the form of food. As always, she has cooked up a storm and stored neatly in the refrigerator. This lady and her energy and spirit. Wish I inherit at least half of that to be called as her daughter. This is what I received from the brother in middle of the night their local time yesterday! I could totally feel this pain.

The crux of the message is “He has listed all the food he ate this week, that his tummy is aching from eating all that food and today the heart also joined the tummy and heart aches as parents are returning to India”.


Sleep over

I am glad we were able to host few sleepover this year though we live in a small condo. I love to be a spectator to see these girls chit chat non stop. The energy in the air on those days are contagious. Here is the breakfast order preference handed over to us for delivery.

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So, the one with * is first choice and the one after is the second choice. So much of thinking!! What if first choice is not available? We have turned into just delivery people of pizzas and donuts. Everything else was taken care by the girls.

Its funny to see LHB in these sleepovers shuttling between the girls and us. One minute he will be sitting in the middle of all girls and next minute he will run to us for a big warm hug or to complain about how they exclude him..

He is very eagerly waiting for his first sleepover, a topic that pops up every time Akka’s friend come home. It is not fair at all!!

We are hosting one of Adi’s friend “S” this week. She lives in same community and her parents are away so she stays with us for the night and boards school bus from our home. I pack lunch for both the girls and I am happy to send them off together in the morning. Planning to pack S’s favorite lunch tomorrow. I just want to make her feel at home as she and her family are going through some tough times. Let’s see!


Family time

Family time at this phase of life means

  1. Cuddling in the bed on weekend mornings pulling each other’s leg and having nonsense conversation! This is the only time the girl allows me to hug her so I never miss this opportunity on lazy mornings!
  2. Movie time in the evenings when there is no need to wake up early next day morning! The mind is magically at peace when all are cuddled in the couch wrapped in blankets! December saw us watching many family Christmas movies
  3. And of course dosa savoring gobbling time! LHB says I am the expert of making cone dosa and no one else can make it as perfect as I do. He says “She cuts it with scissors Appa. You can’t do it. Only she can do it perfect. right Amma?” and melts my heart and soul **blush blush** What would I do without this little boy in my life? We seem to get a bit closer to each other these days with unlimited hugs and kisses..

Back at office

It feels great to be back at office

  • To see the familiar faces
  • the hugs and new year wishes
  • My desk
  • Break time at pantry
  • Lunch time with colleagues
  • Special desk with “Forgot your password” sign at tech centre cracked me up! Seriously do so many people forget their work machine password with holiday break 🙂
  • Train ride
  • Listening to songs during commute time
  • My flowery pink steel water bottle
  • My lavender & sandalwood body cream
  • My hoot hoot owl mug
  • Of course the work itself (did not miss this much as I have been working remote) but the knowledge sharing session today that I totally forgot about, walked in with no preparation and yet talked non stop for 45 minutes and kept the audience intact made me feel good.  Received couple of appreciations after the session. I need to seriously learn to work on my strengths than to crib about weaknesses!!

Today made me realize what I have been missing for past few weeks. I got this share from a friend today and it is funny as I literally followed the same even before seeing this image – woke up one hour earlier than usual time, tackled all morning chores almost on time (actually 10 mins late than the planned time but dropped LHB on time) and reached office ahead of time too but thankfully did not forget my password 🙂

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Happy quotient of today is my laptop was corrupted a month ago and the tech people said they have to replace the processor and I will lose all data. I have been working on a loaner laptop and was told last week that my laptop is repaired and ready for pickup. I visited tech concierge to collect the laptop thinking I should spend next two days to reinstall and setup my laptop but the guy said, it got repaired by itself. All my data and software are intact and no setup is needed. I shook his hand, wished him “Happy new year” and walked out with a broad smile 🙂

I am thankful and feel great to be back at my desk and continue with work on my own laptop in this new year!!

Kothu chapathi

Sunday calls for a food post as most of the day is spent in the kitchen. We have become dosa monsters in recent times as a family. Its one of our favorite and quality family time to sit together and savor the hot crispy dosas that are either dished out by me or M.. Today morning breakfast was one such time when we had egg dosa, masala dosa and chutney dosa. However, the main side dish was missing. Idli molaga podi. M and I missed it terribly for the last dosa!!

So, today the kitchen dished out
Idli molaga podi
Red chutney
Drumstick leaves sambar
Chicken fry

What the title is irrelevant to the content? Ha I started the post to record about Adi’s recent favorite lunch box dish and as it is always the case, started writing about today once the fingers touched the keypad.. So typical me 🙂

So, one day Adi unusually called me on her way back from school and asked, Amma what have you done? What did you even pack for my lunch today? I was at work and million thoughts were crossing mind. Oh my, did I pack a worse food again? Did I make her starve? How can I do this? et all..

I gathered all my courage and asked “Was it too bad pappa?”, “Did you instead buy lunch from school?”

She replied What?It was too good amma. Too good that even my friends tasted it and wanted to know what it is. This is the best lunch that you have ever packed for me. Can you pack the same for my lunch every single day forever and ever? A big sigh of relief on my end!!

Thanks to Sri for this awesome recipe. I saw this dish posted in her blog one night and instantly decided to try it for next day’s lunch box. I altered the recipe to the taste of our home.

Sorry for a bad picture.

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Chapathi – 5 or 6 (cut into small pieces)
Onion – 1
Ginger garlic paste
Cut veggies (carrots, potatoes, green beans, cabbage or any other veggie of your choice)
Chilli/masala powder – 1 spoon
Garam masala powder – little
Turmeric powder – little

Heat oil in a wide pan
Add fennel seeds, curry leaves
Add onion, saute till it gets translucent
Add ginger garlic paste
Add masala powder, garam masala powder, turmeric powder, salt
Add the veggies and saute till they are well cooked
Add the chapathi cut pieces and mix well
Don’t add water and cook till it turns slightly roasted/crispy

High school saga

Never conclude or make any decision about anything before you experience it first hand yourself. This is a lesson I learned recently.

We live in a highly competitive school district and until Adi started high school I was very confident that we have made the right decision about moving to this district and I don’t have to worry a bit about my kid’s education as they will graduate from the best reputed school.

Everything was hunky dory till middle school but high school was very different. We were told its the initial shock and kids will settle down eventually. Honestly, until middle school I have hardly seen Adi sit and focus to study at home. I had never seen her fret over home work or tests. But, in high school her time to go to bed has delayed considerably due to homework, tests and she is waking up one hour earlier in the morning. It is a struggle to wake her every single morning and push her out the door by 6:50am. One of us also stay up with her and that disturbs our morning routine as well. The high school change has disturbed the schedule of everyone at the household. Even LHB’s bedtime gets delayed on some days and I feel very guilty when he yawns in the Karate class.

Its challenging for me too to pack her dabba. We were like zombies during the first month of school. We are yearning for a day to wake up late and weekends were looked upon with eager. So many weekends have gone by but we are still sleep deprived.

Now I wonder if it was a right decision made to move to this district. Some say this rigor will prepare them for college but I am not able to buy it. Should we really prepare the kids for four whole years? What will happen to the high school social/fun life for kids like Adi who take it so serious?

I am totally confused and clueless. I am not able to tell her to not worry about grades as GPA (average grade of all 4 years) plays vital role for college admission and at the same can’t stand to see the girl go through so much stress for 9th grade. May be some kids adapt to this well. I don’t want Adi to feel lesser or demotivated because of this change. Her mental health should be stable and I want her to enjoy high school life.

And if this is the case with Adi, our little happy boy LHB is starting first grade in this school district next year. I am sure he will be squeezed and chucked out in elementary itself. All I can say is the majority asian population in this neighborhood has slowly and steadily spoiled the education system in this district. It is probably time for the township to revisit teacher:student ratio and teaching methods.

May be I should rename the title as “High school rant”

The happy part of this post is I am done with my post for 5th Jan 🙂

01-02-2019 unusual mid morning

Today deserves a picture post as I am too lazy to type anything

This was the scene on 2nd Jan unusual mid morning while I settled on the corner of the bed (that was allocated for me. I have been isolated by the family to keep my germs to myself) with my work laptop attending calls, surrounded by tissue roll, vicks, tiger balm, hot water and LHB next to me playing mix and match game in iPad. Somehow, I feel safe when he is next to me!

Adi even separated the bed with a pillow to keep me and my blankets/pillows away from touching them while sleeping and in these two days I have started to like my own little corner 🙂

LHB’s school is closed this week and its hard to manage this boy at home. Today its just the two of us at home. He is watching TWO hours of TV show in the morning but I try to make up for that in the evening by engaging him! He is taking a nap upstairs on his own surrounded by his plush dolls as I am typing this!

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2019 – What to expect

In 2019 – I am expecting two BIG, yes really big changes in life. We as a family have decided to take our chances and risk. Until 6 months ago, we didn’t even think about this change in our distant dream. Hope it will all turn out good. Its too early to write about it here. Will keep you all updated when the right time comes. Please wish us the best!


  • will be spent in adapting to these two BIG changes.
  • A planned medical need (hope it will all go well)
  • And if there is one other thing I am concerned about, its LHB’s academic progress. Though I keep reminding myself that he is a late bloomer and it is okay if he doesn’t excel in academics. I am happy as long as he is healthy, has good appetite, continues to be a happy boy and being social. I happened to read my old posts about Adi when she was 5 years old and man this boy is no way closer to it! I know, I know no comparison!! It is really okay if he cannot write his last name yet, can’t do skip by counts or remember that Tamil poem. it is right? I think so but the mommy brain you know better how it works!! Sighh!!!

2019 goals and my unique way

I have two primary goals for this year:

  1. To be ahead of time for all appointments/classes. I will do a separate post about why this took priority this year. Actually I started typing here and felt it is worth for a rant post by itself. So, saving the draft for later because its blogathon and I have to do a post every day.. he hee
  2. To not raise my voice or lose my cool unless it is absolutely necessary. I can convey the message or voice my opinion without raising my voice or opening up that water tank of mine. Yes I can!! Yes I should!!

Other goals remain the same from last year

  • Stay fit and healthy. Keep a tab on weight management. Not doing great yet but taking baby steps. This baby is taking forever to even turn one 😦
  • Spread happiness as much as I can and stay positive. Do not let the dark side from past take over the present.
  • Spare time for those who need and respect my time.
  • Do not stop. Keep moving. This is another year to stay high with my energy level to focus on the kids. The deals, rules and trade offs continues. So, yes I have to keep up my energy level. Note to self: Self pity, cribbing or sulking never helps. Just move on lady!!

Want to hear about my unique way of welcoming the new year for past few years? Its to go down with cold and cough, a terrible one that I have to deal with stuffy nose, watery eyes and cough every other minute for at least 3 to 4 days!! Today is Day 2!!!

But remember I am that positive person so I just tell myself that the worst that could happen to my health in this new year has already been dealt with and I am going to be strong and healthy for rest of the year.

It felt so nice to read all my favorite bloggers yesterday. The habit has begun to check my reader often for new posts and replies to my comments. That tiny orange dot notification in the wordpress app makes me genuinely happy 🙂 🙂

If anyone has not joined yet, its never too late, come and join the bandblogwagon!