Ola….and a tip!!!

Yes, I am backo!! I haven’t abandoned my blog! Yayyy!!! Blog mein toh kuch hai…kheench ke waapas le aati hai! 😀 Anyhoo….I find it very difficult these days to write. I login….check out the new themes…and logout. Right now, my eyes are burning, crying out for some sleep but I’ve decided to write something…even if it’s nonsense…but don’t worry…it’s not…i think… 😉

I still keep getting comments on posts I wrote long time ago….and it makes me sad to realise that I’ve totally ignore my blog in the last few years….but it’s quite difficult when you have a toddler at home…to find time to do things you love…

My little one turned one recently and it is such an exciting time for us. He’s trying to take his first few steps too….yipppeee!!! It’s such a pleasure to watch him grow up. I feel so contented. I thought I’d share a few tips on dealing with some baby issues when ever I write a new post….which will also be a good motivating factor to return to my blog. If any of you new mommies out there have any question at all, just drop me a line. I will do my best to answer. I can only give you my tried and tested tips…which might work with A but take it for granted that they MIGHT not work with your little ones 😀

OK….so here goes:

Tip 1 : A was weaned when he was 6 months old. I was not sure of “self-feeding” concept since I felt more satisfied when I fed him variety of fruits and veg. But if your child shows interest in putting spoons of food in his/her month, you have to definitely encourage the habit. I was scared of the mess A would create so fed him everything myself and he’s now used to it. OF course, babies have these phases when they show interest in self feeding and suddenly quit. But encourage their new found talents.

If you just started feeding your baby…and started off with fruit and veg purees…to which your baby is not showing any interest…I strongly suggest mixing baby rice with BREAST MILK and feeding to baby. It worked wonders with A and helped the transition onto solids.

Ok….gtg…gotta put A to sleep…but will be back sooN!!

Peace!!

New Beginnings…

My last post was sometime in March last year…I think…and it is only apt that I start writing again on Mother’s Day. Our son A was born early October last year and since the day I found out I was pregnant, I was simply dedicated to taking care of myself and nothing else. Time flies and he is already 7 months old.

I’ll be frank here. Becoming a mother was not on the top of my agenda after S and I got married. In fact, I was always nervous about becoming a mother. I thought it would effect my relationship with S, I’ll have to give up on many things I loved, like travelling, watching movies at the cinema, going to watch plays, or just being free…free of ‘adult responsibilities’. I kept pushing it back. I didn’t want things to change. I did not want to wake up in the middle of the night for feeds neither did I want any early morning diaper changing calls. I just wanted to be. But what scared me the most was the fact that I was quite a lazy person by nature and motherhood involves a lot of hard work. It is simply not easy.

So when I found out I was pregnant, I guess I was more nervous than happy. I had heard some scare stories of friends who had a rough pregnancy and I simply crossed my fingers and hoped nothing to go wrong. The first three months were tough. There were so many new pregnancy symptoms every week, I did not know which ones to take seriously and which ones to simply ignore (only to learn later to ignore most that did not affect my pregnancy seriously). My mistake was to browse the internet for any little blip and the information overload just scared me even more. So to all the expectant mothers out there….just chill!!! You’ll know when things are seriously wrong and if you are worried about anything….just see you doctor. Do not read any book or browse the internet to find an answer.

My mum was here, cooking for me, taking care of the house so it was a smooth ride and through out the 9 months, I just wanted one thing, for the pregnancy to go well, and to have a healthy baby.

So now that A is in our lives, how have I coped with motherhood? Have my doubts been put to rest??

YES!! In fact, I cannot imagine my life without my son, even though he’s been a part of me for just 16 months. He gives me so much happiness, so much love. His smile lifts my spirits, his tear tears my heart apart. I did not know that I had this much capacity to love someone. I thought my love for S and my parents was the limit, but A brings out this vulnerability in me that no one else can. It has not been easy though. The couple of months, we were getting used to him, and he was getting used to us and the surroundings. There were times when I thought if I could not do this….I questioned myself as a mother, I wondered if I was doing a good enough job. But now, I am a confident mother, more in sync with my son. I know what he needs and when. The sleepless nights do not disturb me any more. I am actually a sleepaholic but now I cope with minimum amount of sleep and I also end up doing all the household chores, take care of A, sometimes for a full week when S is away and I always thought I would not be able to do it.

To put in simply, having my son has been the best thing in my life so far and I would not change a thing. Yes, motherhood is not easy, but the journey is fulfilling to the heart and the soul. He completes me and I am looking forward to some exciting times ahead 🙂

Love you A!!!

Homeward bound…..

…..how I wish!!!! No, I am not going back to India but I am fighting this intense urge to pack my bags and leave UK after living here for 10 years. I HAVE HAD ENOUGH of this gloomy weather, not knowing my neighbours, not seeing people on the streets, having to switch on lights the whole day due to the lack of sunlight and most of all living alone. I was talking to my dad today and asked him why he did not advise me against going to UK for my education when they had lived abroad for more than 10 years, surely they must have know how it was going to be. His answer was simple, I wanted you to experience it. Sure, I did. I learnt to work whilst studying, to live independently, to keep up my self-respect and dignity which might not have happened if I studied in India. But after 10 years, after all the things I’ve learnt, I want to go back.

I read some blogs about people contemplating to go back after living in UK/US for many many years and everyone’s concerned of how it might. Some are nervous about job prospects, some about the traffic, some corruption…everyone’s got their reasons….but let me tell you this….GO BACK IF YOUR HEART IS IN INDIA. Some of us will get to a stage in our lives when we’ll start missing the pollution of India, the cows on the roads, the traffic, the intense heat…and this is when I think is the right take to make ‘that’ decision 😉 Sure, we all miss our families back home…but it is when you miss the ‘not so nice things’ about India…that you are ready to pack your bags.

Last year, I was in India for 6 months. By the end of my holiday, it felt like I was living there and I was visiting UK. I didn’t want to leave at all. I won’t say that my holiday was all hunky dory….there were pros and cons….but the good thing about the holiday was…it gave me an insight into how life in India has changed since 2001 (when I first left). Prices have gone up….even a simple OLAY moisturising cream will cost you more than 500 bucks….parking tickets no less than 100, food prices…..don’t even get me started on this…..snide remarks from men on the streets 😉 and the disrespectful manner in which superiors treat the people who work under them. These are just some of the things I find difficult to digest….but you’ll get used to it eventually. It took me six months to soak myself back again into ‘Indian Culture’ which isn’t that long really. When the time came for me to leave….it was difficult. I was part of the system by then. When it was time to leave, It felt like 2001, the first time I left India and everyone I knew and moved to a new country….the only difference being….I was excited then….in 2009….I was sad. Nothing about returning to UK excited me….S was here and that was the only reason I wanted to to be back.

Most of my friends in UK have always told me that they’ll go back some day but no one has managed to. I always wondered why. There must be a strong reason which is keeping them here? Will I make the same mistake? If the day came when I’ve had enough and wanted to leave….I should be able to pack my bags and LEAVE….simple.

So what is it that has made me think so hard about going back? Let me tell you. I am a social animal. I need people around me all the time. I absolutely hate living alone. Unlucky me, the job market in the UK is crap….so it’s been quite difficult to find a job. I do not know if I’d want to go back if I had a 9-5 job. So anyway, for now it is S and I….we know a few neighbours and most of our friends are scattered all over UK. I barely see anyone on the streets…it’s quite odd. As a student, this was not the case. I lived in halls so you always saw someone. It is this feeling of being alone that annoys me everyday. In India, you at least have a maid who comes home everyday, the ‘phoolwala’, the vegetable vendor, the ‘sweetwala’ etc etc. It is this constant flow of people I miss. Oh….how enjoyable it was…watching my mom bargain with the ‘sweetwala’.

Your priorities change when you have kids. I don’t have any but since most of my friends do….I always end up asking them…..why do you guys still live the UK??? I see most women just stay at home once they have children. All the child gets to see is the mother and the father…and some friends who occasionally visit them but is that enough??? Since the husband goes to work….it is the wife who has to take care of everything….her world revolves around her child and all the child does is climb up the stairs and roll down ….since he/she cannot go out and play because of the disgusting weather. How boring must it be? But somehow they manage. Recently, I offered to help a friend’s son study in the evening. I asked him to bring home some of his books. Apparently, they do not have any. Whatever they need is online…..or something like that. His mom had to buy some books in a store to help him study….it was her initiative. Most of us complain about the burden Indian students are put through in schools…I agree….it is a lot….we can get some sanity into the number of books a child has to carry to school….but no books at all?????

Most of all, when I see my friends kids growing up here….without their grandparents, aunts and uncles….I wonder if they will ever have the ‘family structure’ that most of us had growing up. Family is the most important influence on young people. Meeting your grandparents, visiting them on holidays, going out with your cousins, celebrating birthdays, visiting your uncles and aunts….this is all important….isn’t it??? Because at the end of the day….you might have shit loads of money….a career to die for…but if you do not have family…..it’s not worth a single penny. I would want my children to grow up in front of their grand parents. I will not be happy with 6 month visits (which is in the hands of VFS Chennai) or a phone call when my baby starts walking….or his/her first day of school. If it’s a sports day….I want it to be a family affair….I want my children to have the opportunity of playing cricket or football or what ever they wish OUTSIDE….not just stay indoors and play stupid video games. That is how I grew up. I want them to have a ‘proper family’….not just a mother and a father.

I have so many wishes and so much optimism for the future. Not all plans work out the way we want them to…..and not all dreams come true….but I DON’T WANT TO GIVE UP ON THIS ONE!

Sreesanth, Karan Johar and Telangana

Poor poor Sreesanth…always getting a dress down from his team-mates, from the crowds and the umpires. Are we being unfair here? Why do we love to hate him sometimes? After all, he only sledges and ocassionally crosses the line but who doesn’t? The Aussies do it, Proteas do it, some English players and Pakistanis too. So why is it that we do not support our own? Aren’t we tired of being the nice boys of cricket? We’ve always been the quiet ones. We take everything with a smile on our faces. Nothing wrong with showing some agression on the pitch. Sure, Sreesanth does annoy me sometimes. He comes across as being arrogant and childish. He is ready to give but not ready to take. For eg; when he said something to Bhajji and Bhajji retaliated with a tight slap, he cried and how!!! I mean, if you are ready to abuse people you should be ready to take it aswell. The most interesting part of this whole incident was Dhoni giving Sreesanth a piece of his mind in the dressing room later. Apparently, he did not appreciate Sreesanth abusing Smith’s mother and told him to control his errr tongue 😀 Poor li’l chap! I guess, silent aggression is the most productive…like Zaheer’s gaze, or a cheeky smile or a gesture but mouthing a few abusive words…I am not sure.

Karan, Karan Karan…where do I start??? I was watching SRK’s interview on Koffee with Karan this morning. Karan was curious to know how SRK manages to be happily married inspite of being in a film industry filled with gorgeous women. Apparently, Mr Johar does not believe in the institution of marriage since married people around him just do not seem to be happy. They are either divorced or are persistently faced with marital problems. Why doesn’t he just come out of the closet and accept the fact that he is Gay?? I know Indian society doesn’t provide enough support system for its gay population to come out and get married but that doesn’t mean you sit on your comfortable couch and pass judgements against the institution of marriage. I am not saying marriage is easy but if you really love someone, you over-come any number of obstacles. I know it sounds cheesy but it’s true. Mr Johar works in an industry where there is lot of money, lot of choice and less of trust. Most actors have to stay away from home due to their shooting schedules. There is a lot of scope for marital problems to arise but what matters is how you sort them out. These days, when women are more independent and make their own decisions and are not scared to walk out of an unhappy relationship, it does take a lot of effort from both the sides to have a healthy marriage but just because marriages around you (aka the posh localities of Mumbai) are crumbling, doesn’t mean the majority of the Indian public is suffering the same fate?

There were just two things I was sure of in my life and one of them was getting married to S. We have our good days and bad, ours lows and highs, but what I cherish most is the companionship we share. He is my strength when I am down and out, my sunshine on a gloomy day. I am most happiest when I am in his arms. No amount of money or jewellery can give me the same happiness. I could not have imagined my life any other way. Life is just more beautiful with him by my side.

Karan Johar reminds me of some of my friends, who in spite of having girlfriends for years and years together are simply scared to commit and instead of addressing their fears, they say marriage is a waste of time. I laugh at such poor souls.

So the Telangana verdict is out and surprise surprise…TRS is not happy because they wanted the report to agree with the ‘Telangana Vaadulu’. So what is their plan of action? More burning of public properties, more student killings (I will not call them suicides), and more masala for the NEWS channels. When will we learn to live together in peace? The Sri Krishna Committee report is out and there’s no going back. So just shut up and get on with your lives and let us get on with ours!

Peace!

What Life Throws at You

I just couldn’t get myself to write the last few days. I was disturbed, angry, sad and most of all helpless. One bad day and it spoils remaning six days. Even if you try really hard to block ‘it’ from your head…you cannot. You want to help people by making them understand how things work…but you can’t. You are scared that it could spoil the health of people you love, but do not know how you could explain this to them. Your mind is muddled-up. You feel it’s going to burst if you think about ‘it’ anymore. Everything good that happens to people around you suddenly makes you jealous. You wonder why good things aren’t happening to you anymore.

People who care about you try and console you…but you still can’t stop thinking about ‘it’. You wonder why life cannot be simple…where you have problems but can be solved easily, where your prayers are answered. Then, after a few days of sulking, thinking, you make up your mind to be strong. You know that the only way to be happy is to be satisfied with what you have and not what you don’t have. You pray to God and put all the burden on His/Her shoulders…reminding him that he/she is the one who is supposed to take care things.

And then you start to relax…but life is a Biatch…and it throws s*** at you again and again…and gradually you get used to it. You learn to tackle it…you learn to work out your life with the problems involved in it…you no more think of God solving your problems. You suddenly realise that it is YOU who will have to take care of things. You realise that you will always have problems….everyone does…but if you have the support of loved ones…you can face anything and most of the time you will come out of it successfully. You’d then just pray to God asking him to take of the ones you love.

I don’t know if it is my harmones talking…’cuz I know most of it sounds like some random ramble. I don’t expect anyone to get the gist of what I have just written…but if anyone did…leave a comment..encouraging ones 😀 because if you don’t…I am ready with a broomstick in my hand 😀

Pic Courtesy: http://www.motivationalplus.com

Why Women?!

I wanted to update my blog with a couple of recipes…but since my head muddled up thinking about the recent event in Birmingham….I wanted to write the hell out about the psychological mess I am undergoing!

I was speaking with my mom when she told me more about the news…of how the guy after killing Jyothirmayee, self-inflicted injuries to avoid any doubts of his involvement in the murder. I was asking S why a girl would want a relationship with a psycho as himself in the first place. Probably she did not know he’d turn out to be like this. Not her fault. Now that she is gone…it is her family who have been punished for life. How can a human being be so selfish that he/she can think only about himself/herself and is ready to ruin anything that comes in his/her way?

Why didn’t God give the same strength to women to protect themselves as He/She gave to a man? Why is it that a woman is always molested or raped…? Why is it that a woman has to listen to vulgar talk while walking on the road inspite of wearing a shalwar kameez? Why is it that a woman is disfigured, tortured and sometimes killed if she doesn’t accept a man’s advances/demand for love or lust? Why is she tortured and murdered if she does not pay dowry to her husband and her family…..and the most sorrowful fate of all: she is killed even before she is born!

Be it Ayesha’s murder case which has now taken a political turn or the gruesome murder of a 10th class student Mendu Lakshmi who was all of 15 yrs old by her 19 year old neighbour all because she did not accept his advances, a woman undergoes pain that is unimaginable. If we dig history…thousands of such cases will come up…most of them still in courts after tens of years. In a country like India, where law is in the hands of the rich and powerful….middle-class families have to see generations of their off-spring perish before a verdict is reached!

My thoughts stop here….SHE IS THE BEARER OF ALL, YET SHE SUFFERS THE MOST!

Pic Courtesy: Cornell.edu

Wishes

Today is S’s Birthday and I am terribly busy. I baked a Banana and Walnut cake for him yesterday 😀 Yipppeeeeee. This will be just my second time…and it has turned out really good! The first time round..I baked a chocolate cake at a friend’s place…which was equally yummyy, but then she was guiding me each step of the way. I am thankful to Pras who not only helped me bake the cake but also for keeping the surprise a secret from S. He did not have a clue what was happening last night. ROFL! Somehow, I had this feeling that he knew what I was upto…but he didn’t!!!! I am sure he didn’t think I would bake a cake…I am the one who will order 😀 But the satisfaction I got after the end result was fantastic. It’s different…buying a cake and baking one. All your love, effort and hardwork goes into the one you bake…so it tastes even more delicious 🙂 I also made Vada with Coconut and Dried Red Chilli Chutney (the credit of which goes to Pras again) for breakfast, Chapala Pulusu (Smoked Salmon Fillet Curry-the credit of which goes to my mom) with Plain Rice for lunch, and probably S’s fav Peri Peri Chicken Indian Style for Dinner. Recipes will be coming up soon 🙂

Yup…the cake I baked 😀 and don’t worry…S is not 10 😀 There was no space to insert any more candles and looking at the cake…you can also say that I am not very good at decorating it either 😀