Weekend recap

20 Mar

This weekend went by in such a blur of activity but allowed for lots of family time which I was happy about. Family time is probably going to look very different once the baby gets here and from observing and talking to other families with two children a few years apart, it is a lot of divide and conquer with dad usually being with the older kid and mom with the baby. We will have to see what works for us when the time comes . As of now , I love the age Bandar is it and I cherish the time the three of us get together.

Friday evening started with a Costco trip with Bandar. I am unable to pick up Bandar and hoist her into the cart nowadays but she is so good and holds my hand or my shirt as we go through the aisles. I wish they had more veggie samples !Once home , the husbadoo surprised us by getting home early and it just made my evening. We really did nothing much but having him home at a decent hour of 7 pm just took a lot of pressure off me. Bandar ended the night with an episode of her favorite show.

Saturday morning , we decided to head  out on a family walk around the neighborhood. It was a shortish 2.5 mile walk but Bandar was in her stroller and the husband and I got to enjoy a leisurely conversation about work and other things. Once home, Bandar and I went off for her gymnastics class. We have just enrolled her in this and she loves it. The husband also packed a to-go lunch for her as Bandar and I had lunch plans later. Once her class was done , we headed to lunch with some friends of mine.I just have to say Bandar was as good as gold and colored and sketched and ate like a pro.  The husband meanwhile was at cricket. Once Bandar and I got home, she played a bit while I did laundry and caught up on half an episode of Scandal. We then headed to a spiritual class for Bandar at the temple. We do this a few times a month and if nothing else I am glad Bandar requests to practice  a few bhajans and shlokas during the week in preparation for the class and is taking a great interest in mythology stories. I have very strong opinions on what is wrong with the way this class is organized and run but I will save them for another post. As of now, it will suffice to say I am trying to only see the pros of this rather than the cons. After the class, we had dinner plans at a friend’s house . The husband met us there and we have a leaisurely evening with them. Bandar got to play with her friends too and the three little girls had a blast till 10 pm when we headed home. Bandar was so sleepy by the time we got home and so were we.

Sunday morning started with Skype with the grandparents . The husband made uttapams- home made fermented batter that has actually worked well for us for once .We then wrapped up our tax returns..Productive weekend in my book! For lunch , I made stuffed Portobello caps for lunch . Super yummy . I ate mine with ketchup.

The filling is sauteed bell peppers , spinach, a healthy heap of pesto and some cheese. 

After a surprisingly filling lunch, I wanted to go for a walk. But it was too hot to step out with family. I then got into some sort of a huff with the husband ( we both blame it on pregnancy hormones ) . Anyway it resulted in me walking alone for a bit relistening to Harry Potter book 7 . Once home and calmer and after a good shower we headed out to meet friends by the beach. After the kids got done playing , we went out for dinner . The dinner was slightly spoilt as Bandar found a piece of chicken in her soup and probably ate a good portion of it before finding it too fibrous. Needless to say we will not be going back to that place. The night ended after a short stop at Whole Foods to get Bandar some dessert. As I am supposedly watching my sugar intake among other things right now, I held back in picking a treat for myself. The husband in his support of me also restricted himself.Bandar was exhausted on the ride home and she was asleep immediately after brushing her teeth at home. I sat down to get a good 3 hrs of work done before falling asleep myself at 12. And waking up on Monday was obviously delayed . Here’s to a busy week ahead !

What’s been happening here…

17 Mar

Come June 2017 and things are going to get busy around here. We are expecting a new baby!

Now that this piece of news is out there, I can finslly share all the stuff I have wanted to about this.

My first pregnancy which was a good 4.5 years ago was actually a very blissful , peaceful, serene time. I remember long walks with the husband, evenings post work being filled with a lot of me time of just lying on the bed or such and watching TV, eating out a lot and a whole lot belly pictures and sessions of simply talking to the baby. But the second time around however time seems to be going by so quickly. Sadly, there have been zero walks – with or without the spouse. We both have busier work schedules now and both bring work home. Any free time is absorbed in Bandar activities. There has also not been a whole lot of me time. Bandar though quite independent needs my care every evening and I am not complaining. I am actually savoring these last few months of her being an only child and we have been playing a lot of board games together and reading books. There has been like one belly pic at the beach but this is all, versus the millions we took last time. But that said , all three of us are eagerly awaiting this little baby and not a day goes by without us talking about and to it.

We couldn’t wait to tell Bandar and I am so glad she reacted the way she did. I have often heard these telling  the older child episodes can be anti climatic but it wasn’t it our case and her reaction was equal parts disbelief, amazement and excitement and I cannot ask for more . I will post more in detail about telling her the news as I want to always remember and treasure that the moment.

Anyway , I hope Bandar’s excitement holds once the baby is out. From small positive behavioral changes, I can already see she is going to make an amazing big sister. Our “kids” (funny to type/say that) will be about 4 years and 10 months apart and I can’t wait to see them together. Bandar displays an amazingingly soft, caring side when she pats and strokes and talks to my expanding belly everyday. She has also told every single person at school – kid , teacher, cleaner, other parents at pick up about the baby and her enthusiasm is infectious.

We don’t know what we are having and don’t intend to find out. It was such an amazing moment to find out in the labor room and I can’t wait to experience it again. Also it is so much fun guessing and imagining both boy and girl scenarios for the next 3 or so months of pregnancy that we have left. My mommy intuition tells me this one is a girl, and I had same strong feeling when I was pregnant with Bandar as well.  Bandar is actually open to both possibilities to my surprise as she previously always commented she wanted a sister. She repeatedly says she will love whatever baby we have and just hopes the baby is healthy. Echoes what we say on the subject.

My body is growing at a furious pace. I have actually been told to watch my gain and I was a few lbs over what was recommended at this point . This is super irritating as I usually just use pregnancy as an excuse to indulge in my favorite foods. Anyway, guess that phase is done now and I have to really be careful about what I eat. I think this weight gain is mainly from going carb heavy the first two trimesters to beat nausea and I am now sadly paying the price. I am hoping I can have a healthy last trimester and not develop gestational diabetes and other complications .

The baby’s movements are getting more pronounced and stronger each day and it is undoubtedly my only favorite part of pregnancy.  The husband and Bandar can see my belly move and twitch when they talk to it.

Apart from being unable to hog and enjoy food as much as I want , the only other thing I am really missing during this pregnancy is tea. My office has an excellent choice of tea bags and I crave one every single morning . I went completely without any  caffeine for the 9 plus months I was pregnant with Bandar and this is something I am aiming to do again.  But I do crave a chai tea latte several times a week. That first cup of tea post-delivery is what I am really looking forward to, ideally with a wonderful bagel and cream cheese to go with .

I had actually saved all my maternity clothes from my last pregnancy. But when I looked through them I realized I didn’t want to wear any of them this time around .Maybe in the 4 years my sense of fashion has changed dramatically. The few staples I think I can still pull off from the old pile are so well worn and loose from wear. I should have donated these long ago, Anyway, this led to some pregnancy shopping which is not as fun and cracked up as it seems to be as I know this time that I am actually investing in these things for a few months  of pregnancy. Though who am I kidding, I hung out in maternity pants a good 6 months post delivery! Anyway, I am liking the final result in my closet – I went through a lot of online ordering and returning and reoreding to get here. But I am happy now and hope these all fit till the end.

That’s it for now with this mish mash of a post. I will write more about this as I regret not writing when I was pregnant with Bandar.

 

 

 Daylight savings !

13 Mar

Sunday morning – Bandar is up at 7:15 am ( as per body clock actually 6:15 am,daylight savings went into affect at 2 am Sunday morning ). We all get up with her and I feel super productive as we have finished making and consuming choc chip waffles and kale smoothies and skyping by 9 am. Bandar is happy and playful till it’s time to head to a birthday party at 11 am and I can see her getting tired out.

Sunday afternoon – Bandar naps for a good 2 hours after the party and we catch up on two episodes of “This is us “. This never happens as one or both  usually falls asleep when she does.

Sunday evening – Bandar is up at 5:30 pm from her nap and we decide to head to the park for playtime and a sunset picnic. Two hours at the park and my frame of mind is that I love daylight savings , the almost extra family time it gives us and 7 pm sunsets!

Sunday night – Bandar has a bath, watches her 20 min weekend show and turns into bed at 9 pm. At 9:20  pm she is still wide awake and I drift off to sleep before her. 

Monday morning -My alarm goes off at 5:50 am, 6:20 am, 6:30 am , 6:45 am till I finally get up at 7:02 am! I head down and scramble to make lunches and breakfast. My goal to get a headstart on dinner using our electric pressure cooker fails and I head back up to wake up a sleeping Bandar at 7:50 and ready myself. Needless to say we are terribly late for school , getting there at 8:45 instead of 8:30. But surprise, we aren’t the only ones !! Kids are just coming in and there are lots of tears and chaos all around.  I wave good bye to Bandar as she heads out to the playground with her class and I put away her lunch and other things before heading to work. I am thankful my child doesn’t cry at drop off , I think to myself. We are so past that as Bandar has been in a structured school environment since she was 15 months old. Of course, I jinx it and my child comes running to me with her eyes full of tears as I accidently forgot to hand her her water bottle when she headed out to play ! Lots of hugs and kisses follow and I finally lead her out to her friends and teacher and wave good bye. My frame of mind as I drive myself to work is I hate stupid daylight savings !

Date night

1 Mar

I have blogged before about lunch dates being our thing and that will always remain. But around Valentine’s Day the husbadoo and I managed to get a date night together and I am writing about it mainly to save it as a personal memory.

The only times we have actually had a dinner date since we became parents almost 4.5 years ago have been solely because we have had specific events to attend – like holiday parties or dinners with colleagues. But apart from that our dinners without Bandar have been inexistent for the most part. The reasons for this are several. I have left Bandar with sitters before of course for work but it seemed to be too much of an effort and waste of money  to really find a good reliable sitter for a “mere frivolous” (in my head at that time) date night. On top of that, the husband and I are perfectly happy enjoying some quality couple time on the couch watching a show or eating dessert after Bandar goes to bed, that the effort to execute upon a date night outside of the house again seemed an unnecessary stretch in execution. Bandar herself is much older now and a fun dining companion and loves eating out as much as we do, so we have taken her to some non-kid friendly restaurants recently like fancy tapas places and she has behaved beautifully, and a date night was not something we missed. And finally the stupidest reason of all – a little bit of parent guilt as for fulltime working parents time with your child is limited to begin with and a date night seemed almost like a selfish act. 

So it finally took Bandar’s school organizing childcare at a reasonable price on Saturday evening right before Valentines Day to actually get us out for dinner.

Bandar was thrilled about the evening she was going spend from 5-9 pm at school with her friends. And we were excited at an unexpected opportunity to enjoy a meal together outside. It had to be a meal as I vetoed a movie immediately. So then we spent a pleasant 2 hours (yes, that long) picking the cuisine and restaurant. We finally picked the cuisine – Italian and a restaurant that we had wanted to try for a while but hadn’t simply because the offered no Pizza which is essential for Bandar when we ate Italian. And I wanted to ensure it was a restaurant we both had not been to before with our friends or through work. Anyway we picked a winner.

Getting ready for to head out was fun too and this is where I think evenings on the couch are great, but would highly recommend getting  all dressed up to go out with your partner once in a while . We got to Bandar’s school and a lot of the parents like us were dressed up and were giggly excited to enjoy their evening out! The children were having their own Valentine’s Day themed evening including themed vegetarian food and waved their good byes happily.

Then we off downtown. We didn’t have a reservation but as it was barely 6 pm we got a cozy table without a wait and enjoyed a delicious meal and great conversation. Granted that a lot of our chatter invariably goes to Bandar, but I think that’s only natural with most parents. Plus we are a couple who is usually connected on a regular basis regarding our jobs, friends, respective families and other things . So it’s not like we had to catch up the other person on all that stuff. We then strolled around the area arm in arm and went to pick up the most overrated desserts in town. We usually stay clear off this dessert place because apart from the it being ridiculously expensive and overrated there is also usually a long wait. Anyway as we were sans child that day, we happily stood in line and choose our desserts and picked them up to go. We shared one in the car and decided to save the other one for the day after. We still had 1.5 hours to kill at that point and ended up going shopping to buy some essentials like a clock for our bedroom and shoes. We finally arrived to pick up Bandar a good 20 minutes before and she had just settled down in her pajamas to watch a movie. We bundled her into the car and got home, all three of us having had a wonderful evening.

The current scene

24 Feb

Currently feel : In physical pain. I have a terribly weak ankle.I had a ligament tear at the age of 16 that the doctor never treated properly and that I never tested properly , so now it’s weak for life. So this means I could be walking in say flat, or sports shoes or even bare foot at home and it will randomly twist on me and even make a resounding crack . I usually land up on the floor or wince in pain and sit down. The ankle is then swollen and tender for a few hours or days and then fine again till the next time.

My current favorite thing:  My new fitted sheets. I love making the bed and getting into hotel style tucked in sheets and Bandar does too.

Currently drinking : My new favorite thing to sip on cold evenings is dry fruits flavored warm whole milk. I barely drink milk normally but nowadays making my own dry fruit powder and slowly boiling the milk to form the creamy layer and then adding the home made flavoring and no sugar gives me a sense of peace and calm .

Currently Reading : I miss my book club in NYC 😦 . I am seriously debating starting one here. I am re reading  Bridget Jones for the nth time. Bandar and I together are reading Enid Blyton’s circus series about Mr. Galliano ‘s circus.

Currently watching : Old seasons of the Amazing Race by myself. “This is Us” with the husband when we get time to catch an episode. ” Master chef junior “as a family over the weekend .

Currently excited about :The weekend . Saturday is packed with a yoga class for me, a  birthday party invite for Bandar, a temple event for the whole family , a baby shower invite for Bandar and me and a house warming invite  for us all.

Currently proud of : My new Yelp Elite ! Badge for the area I live in. I write Yelp reviews fairly seriously and I am glad it’s paid off. Now to actually attend some elite events.

Currently not looking forward to : Getting Bandar two remaining vaccinations really soon. Maybe tomorrow . They are boosters and we pushed them out to avoid doing 5 on one day during her last appointment and now I just need to get the job done.

Pet peeves – version 2017

17 Feb

Here are my latest peeves. This series remains my favorite to write , only after the Dear Bandar series. So that should give you a glimpse of how easy it is to irritate me!

– Slow people on the stairs. Especially those who are on their cell phones browsing as they go up or down. .I try to stick to the right hand side of the staircase but  these idiots force me to say a quick “excuse me” and move past to their left. I am also genuinely worried for their safety. 

– Moms who act like child whisperers and immediately swoop in to comfort a crying child who is not theirs at a party or get together. This when the child’s own mother is trying to calm the child down in their own way. 

– A Costco trip with no vegetarian sample. What is with that?? I didn’t park my car and walk across the massive parking lot and get a huge ass cart to just shop. I need plenty of veggie samples to make my Costco trips worthwhile.
– Desis who will immediately start talking in their own language irrespective of the other Desis around then who don’t know the language or non Desis.  This even in meetings.Plain rude !When someone starts with me , I immediately respond loudly  in English for the benefit of the others around us  or pretend I don’t understand the language.

– Giant bows on baby girls heads. What is so cute about this ?? Ughh..Hate this trend. I am okay with a teeny tiny bow to keep hair off a baby’s face but babies don’t need overpriced fugly bows bigger than their heads.

-Ridiculous off shoulder ball gown like dresses for little girls on their bdays. Why do you want to make your child look older than she is.
That’s all I have for now . Do share yours !

Some sort of a V day post 

15 Feb

“So are you happy in your marriage? “, my dad asks me. We are seated across each other by the pier in Vancouver ,Canada. My mom, the husbadoo and Bandar are off enjoying a simulated ride. My dad who is petrified of rides of all kinds wanted to stay put and I decided to give him company, having experienced my fair share of simulated rides in Disney and the like.

So we have 45 minutes to kill and I have just walked him through exactly what I do at work. Now we are down to personal stuff!

“Yes, Dad ,very happy”,  I say. I immediately start wondering why he would think otherwise. My parents like any doting parents hate seeing the daughter ever strain a muscle more than she has to. (I know my folks are not exceptions here  – my friend told me about how her dad once burst into tears seeing his daughter load the dishwasher when he visited her in the US !So my parents on the whole are definitely a little saner and have so far atleast to my knowledge, not shed any tears over my “hardships” in my privileged , first world country life) .My folks have now grown to love my husband like a son, it’s taken us 7 plus years of marriage to get here but we are here now thankfully. But at the same time , they are my parents and I definitely come first in their book, so I know they notice and resent some things in our everyday household. These include but are not limited to the husbadoo coming in late from work most days of the week , the fact that I do most of the pick ups and drops for Bandar, me having to pack lunch boxes in the morning, me doing  almost all the grocery shopping  and the fact that I am the one who does the laundry usually . (Their disappointment about the laundry one surprises even me. Laundry at our house has only two inconveniences associated with it that really aren’t a big deal – one is getting the laundry down from the second floor down to the laundry room below and the second is folding, which I do while watching TV. So though I wouldn’t call the experience enjoyable , it is definitely not as hard as other chores – say planning and cooking meals ! ) . I hadn’t complained about any of this to them but somehow they saw these as potential opportunities for the husband to chip in more and have voiced this opinion to me.

It’s not that I am a saint and have never been pissed about having to do any of the above either. I have days when I am fed up of the routine and having my “single mom” kind of  evenings as I call them with all child duty after a work day. But then I know that our arrangement for splitting household and childcare between us is because of the practicality and our schedules and it works for us somehow. And more importantly I know that one call or text from me that says I am tired or unable to do my share of the chores on any particular day, the husbadoo will move mountains to cover for me. By this I mean he will not hesitate to cancel important meetings to let his wife simply go attend a happy hour with her colleagues. He will stop by the Indian store at 9 pm when he gets off work to save me the drive if I request it. He will get up after barely 2 hours of sleep to pack Bandar’s lunch if I am running late or if I am simply grabbing a few extra zzzzs. He will stop to wash Bandar’s lunch box just before he rushes out of the house to simply save me the trouble if he can. He will tirelessly make Bandar and me perfect dosas and ensure we eat them hot off the stove on the nights that he takes over the kitchen . And he will take a sick Bandar to work with him, to allow me to settle into a new job and not have to take a day off. So our arrangement on most days of the week works for us and allows for flexibility if I so much as just hint at it.  But I don’t unnecessarily pull that lever often. Why would I when I know I will be sending a guy to the grocery store after a 14 hour work day or asking someone who has been up half the night working to carry loads of laundry down for me. When I am physically and emotionally capable of handling these things, I simply do. 

 

So my parents simply viewing our lives from the outside for 3 weeks of the year and wondering if I am happy makes me wonder how they are not seeing or choosing to see what I see. There is so much more that I want to say to them about our relationship, how strong it is and that chores don’t faze me and it is an equal household in so many ways. So much more to say to them that goes like this –  Yes, yes, parents, I am truly happy! Believe it, please do. I made a good choice with this man and here is what it really boils down to:

I am married to a guy who simply puts me before anything else. This is over Bandar, over his family, over his career, pretty much anything else.

Him “letting me” slog it out on weekday evenings means nothing and is simply the way things have to be for us to lead an orderly life. He will go to the ends of the earth to stand up for me . I am often worried to tell him about small misunderstandings I have had with his family as he might blow his top at them and make a mountain out of  a molehill, all in support of me. He supports my career in every way possible and wouldn’t hesitate in moving states or countries for me, like he has done in the past . He will get into loud verbal altercations about simply supporting your wife with other Indian guys who refuse to take this strong stand by their wife’s side over their own parents.

But of course I don’t say any of this and instead just leave it at “I am happy”! It is nice to have some attention and milk some sympathy when I can 🙂