The Beat in My Heart

Sharing my Thoughts with the World!

Moving to California

We have been in Seattle for 5.5 years. Before moving here, I was not sure about the move at all. We lived in Wisconsin for about 8 years, we owned a home there, both the boys were born there… way too many memories. It was really really hard to leave that place and move. We put the house for sale, and got ready to move all the way to the Pacific Northwest. While driving to the airport, I was bawling like a baby. I loved our home and I really couldn’t believe that we have to leave it and move.

Once we got here, we fell in the routine of things, and started looking for an apartment. Although we were reluctant to move to Redmond because the commute for S would be a bit too much, we decided to just check out the place. The first time we drove around Redmond, we knew we should live here. It just felt so familiar and nice. We signed a lease and we have been in Redmond all these years. Never regretted our decision.

Moving here also gave us opportunities we did not have in the small town of Wisconsin. I was able to get a job within 6 months of moving, S loved his job, we found a good day care for the kids and we settled down. I always hated the winters, but the summers do make up for it. Summers are beautiful here. The scenery is so good. Time just flew by and I have no idea how 5 years have gone by. We made amazing friends here, the schools are good, my career is blooming and life is just blissful at this point.

Now, we are having to leave all this leave to a new place and start over again. S got an very nice opportunity in CA. After debating for over a month, we decided to move and make it our new home. Saying that I am anxious about the move is putting it mildly. There are days when I am almost hyperventilating because the thought of moving is just too much for me. I have come to love this place and it makes me sad to move. There are days I fantasize about moving and having the opportunity to grow plants all through the year. The gardener in me is excited. It will definitely be nice to not worry about the rain or the gloomy weather. So, there are some perks that come with it.

The kids seem excited. Hopefully writing about it here will help me deal with all of this in a better way πŸ™‚

 

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Harry Potter

How can I write about books during Read Across America week and not mention Harry Potter. This is an amazing set of books that every kid should read. Since I do not need to review the books here, I will write about my experiences with these books. I read them about 4 years ago and I just loved them. I could not put those books down. I cried and laughed with the characters. I have read them about 4 times after that and I am still not bored.

Sarath has now finished the series and is reading it again and again. Every time he reads it, he finds something new that he missed the last time. Me and Sarath have discussions about the books, characters and the plot lines. It feels so good to discuss it with him. I get to see the books from an entirely different perspective.

One more reason I love those books is the fact that I can use the characters to teach Sarath about many things. He is now going through a phase where he does not want to talk to any new kid, or make new friends and has been snapping at anyone and everyone. So, I talked to him and after a long discussion of what he should be doing, I told him “please don’t be a Malfoy”. It lightened the mood and the he got the point instantly. I love it when I can use the book to teach him something.

One of my favorite lines in the series is “It is our choices, that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.” I talked to Sarath about this before he read the second book and he remembered it when was reading the books. We always go back to this one and keep talking about it. This seems to get the message across in a very easy way and the fact that Dumbledore says it in the book, makes it more interesting to him πŸ™‚ Initially when he started reading the books, I wasn’t sure if he would understand it at all. Now I know I was wrong. He loves those books.

With all the Harry Potter mania going around in our house, Sanjay is also very excited to read the series. He keeps telling Sarath not to spoil his surprises πŸ™‚ He just cannot wait to read it.

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Scribbleville

This week is Read Across America week! It is Dr. Suess birthday on March 2nd and this week is celebrated in his honor. I have read a lot of Dr. Suess books to my kids. I so wish I had these books to read when I was little. It inspires kids to read more. If there is one thing I am really proud as a parent so far, it is the love of reading I gave the kids. I read to them diligently when they were babies. It felt silly at first reading to a 6 month old baby. What does he understand? But, I just went along with it. Slowly, it became a routine for us. I loved that time of snuggles and reading. By the time Sarath was 1, he already loved books. I started with Sanjay even before he was 6 months old. He used be on my lap every night when I read to Sarath. He picked up on it too. The kids love to read. There were many comments made about this routine of us reading books to our babies. For once, I did not care and I am so glad for it now πŸ™‚

So, as part of the Read Across America week, I decided to share some amazing books I have read to them. Here is the first one. Sanjay got this book from his school library and was very excited to read this to me. He wanted to read with me on a weekday morning before going to school. That day luckily we had some extra time, and I sat there with my cup of tea to read this book to him.

Photo courtesy: Amazon.com

The book is about a town where are the people are squiggly with not straight lines at all. Even the houses and animals are squiggly. Then one fine day a person who is all straight comes to the town and builds a house with all straight lines. He is at first seen as the outsider and the people in town do not like him at all. Then a girl from town makes friends with him and gets married and they have kids who are both squiggly and straight.

An amazing book to show kids how to embrace differences between each other. It is rather a very nice way to show that different is not bad after all. We are all people not matter our appearances. I think this book is even more important now in the current political turmoil.

 

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Random Ramblings early in the morning

It is 5:30 in the morning and I have already been up for 2 hours. I went for a yoga class yesterday after a long time. I had been to yoga classes at my gym before and I absolutely loved it. It made me feel more relaxed. Since I am not able to make time to go on week days, I decided to go yesterday (Saturday). The one thing different this time was that it was not the regular basic yoga class. It was a slightly fast paced one. I didn’t realize it until I go there. Then I just kept going and felt good about how flexible my body is. But, the instructor had the music a bit loud for my liking and by the end of it, I actually had a head ache.

Then after coming home, me and S decided to clean out our garage. It has been a long time coming and I was starting to feel very stressed about the mess around the house. So, I just dived right in with him and cleaned every bit of the garage – it was mostly re-organizing and labeling stuff but, it did take us 3 hours. I didn’t realize it then, but I had done a lot of work there. By the end of it, I was VERY tired. We ordered food from a new restaurant (which has the best hyderabadi biriyani) and ate until I was too full. I then had a long shower and a nap. Best Saturday right.. but, it was not. I started aching all over and couldn’t even get out of bed. I stayed in bed until 5 pm and then slowly got to cooking. I just felt drained by that time and had barely any energy left for anything.

But, I somehow got the kids to eat (in the middle of Β a million complaints),Β put the kids to bed, ate dinner and I fell asleep complaining of body aches. So, early in the morning, Sanjay came over to snuggle with me. He does that all the time. He woke me up at 3 am and then after about half hour went back to his bed. I have been up since then as my entire body is aching and I just cannot fall asleep 😦 I took tablets for the pain and drank some warm milk in the hope that I will fall asleep. God.. I should just stick to my walking routine for a while. Well.. lesson learn’t. I was just browsing and suddenly realized that I had all the time now to write a post here.

Ah.. it feels so good to write again πŸ™‚ I missed this.

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Thanksgiving 2016

We had a pretty laid back day today. I woke up with a headache, and my cold increased. I relaxed for a bit in the morning. We then did a couple of loads of laundry and cleaned the house. It felt really good. Sometimes getting things done around the house feels so good that it actually lifts my mood. We ate a quick lunch and I managed to take a small nap while the kids were watching tv.

In the evening, we had some friends over for dinner. I made more apple pie bites (S says they should be called cinnamon apple rolls) and S made minestrone soup. We had cheese baguettes and casserole from our friends. It was a very nice and relaxing evening. The best part was that, I had planned everything so well that, I was all done with cooking and cleaning and also had time to sit around and relax before they came over. That felt good.

The only tough part was having a headache all day today. It lasted through the evening and I felt drained by the time everybody left. I am sleepy but, I know I wouldn’t fall asleep yet. I just want to see how many days I can write my happy thoughts here. We are planning to go for shopping tomorrow just for the fun of it. Let’s see if we can get any good deals.

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The year 2016

I was just going through my past blog post and realized that I have not accomplished anything that I wanted to. Here I have detailed very clearly what I wanted to do and achieve this year. I am very sad to say that I have not accomplished anything from that long list.

I gave up blogging all these days as it was eating my already limited time. Why am I writing now? I am actually not sure. I love to write posts here. I love to go back and read them. But, the lack of time is making it impossible to do it. And I realized that the lack of time is because of me. I suck at time management. As a freelancer, that is the first thing I should master and I haven’t done that yet. It’s been two years into freelancing, but I am nowhere near my goals. I would love to get more projects.

I keep making strong decisions from time to time but keeping promises to myself is the last thing I do. Keeping promises to others comes easily for me. So, I am currently struggling with a huge work load, stress of taking care of everything at home and not to mention every little detail regarding the kids. I am tired pretty much most of the days. It’s been months since I actually saw an entire movie. I just don’t feel like doing any of those things anymore. I just want to get enough sleep and I am not getting that either. Right now I should have been sleeping. It’s been a week since I got any good sleep. I have a pounding headache right now and I cannot fall asleep. I opened this blog and thought I will start writing something here. I actually like the fact that I am writing here but, I know I am going to pay for it tomorrow. The kids are going to wake up early and I am going to drag through another day with very little sleep. Sigh!

Hopefully, I will write here more often and hopefully it will be the good things that are happening in my life. One of my goals last year was to write about the good things in my life. I know I am thankful to many things in life. I want to make sure I remember them and feel good. Anyway with tomorrow being thanksgiving, now is probably the best time to start writing about what I am happy about.

The things I am happy about today:

  1. I made apple pie bites today. I have been wanting to make this for a while now and I finally made it today. It was okay. Not as good as I expected, but hey I am going to give some credit to myself for actually making something.
  2. I took time off work today and spent doing nothing. I read for a while before picking up the kids from school. After lunch, I was just browsing the internet lazily. I did have some work to do for a client, but I ignored it for today.
  3. I cleared the kids toys and the junk we have been saving for God knows how long! The kids were actually eager to help me clear up so that they can bring in some new toys from the garage. We actually ended up with one big pile of trash (broken toys and missing parts) and also one big pile of toys to donate. The kids decided that some toys were in good condition but, they are much older now to be playing with them. I am very happy about it.
  4. I went to Half Price Books today to return some stuff. I remembered that Sanjay wanted Guliver’s Travels book. I was actually able to find a kids version of the book with very nice illustrations. It only has the story of Lilliputs and not the other parts of his adventure. But, it is a great book and Sanjay loves it!

Ok… not bad. I was able to come up with a few things. With about a month to go for the new year, let’s see what I can accomplish.

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Being Happy and Healthy

First of all, I want to say that I am officially out of the blogathon 😦 What was I thinking when I committed myself to writing a post EVERYDAY??? Clearly I wasn’t thinking. That is the problem with me. I always sign up myself for a lot of things and I don’t manage to get them done. The same happened with the blogathon. I was not sure if I will be able to write everyday. But, I wanted to. I just couldn’t make it work. There are plenty of reasons why I could not write but, I am not going to dwell on them. This year I decided I am going to focus more of the positive side of life. If I want my kids to stay positive and focus on the good things that life gives us, I should be practicing it right? So, that’s what I plan to do.

As I already said in my first post this year, I plan to work on a lot of things like my health and managing my time efficiently. I also decided to blog regularly but it is really difficult for me to come up with topics when I start writing. I need to improve on this for my work as well. So, I plan to write about my exercise, eating right, time management and the other little things that make me happy. Hopefully, that will give me fodder to write and will also help me go back and look at my progress.

When I say ‘being healthy’, it is a big term and it has various dimensions to it. Eating right (not dieting), exercising, getting my vitamins everyday and most of all focusing on happy thoughts. All this needs to go hand in hand. I read somewhere that we should focus on changing one thing at a time. That is just not working for me. So, I decided to do it all at once. It might be a lot to handle, but by then end of this year, I hope to be a much happier and healthier person πŸ™‚ Β I am trying to teach my kids to be happy focus on the good and bad parts of their days as well. Every night before they go to bed, I talk to them about their day. They tell me if they think they had a good, bad or a worst day. They also tell me about their worst part and the best part of the day. I have been doing this for about 6 months now and I can see the clarity in their thoughts. They now know that some days they get more things that they like (favorite dinner or candy or play date with a friend or favorite episode on TV etc..) and some days are really bad because they had a fight in school or they had to eat something they don’t like etc. But, now they also realize that no matter how bad the day was, there is always some good that has happened to them. I love how even Sanjay can think so clearly sometimes. This exercise has helped them grow on an emotional level.

I plan to do the same but never get around to actually write down my thoughts. This is where I plan to use this blog and write more positive thoughts here. I might dump my negative thoughts too, but I hope to never publish them. But, then am I actually thinking that I can write my thoughts here everyday? Hell no! I am smarter now and I plan to write here once a week. I’m so hoping I will have some good things to write about my exercise next week (keeping my fingers crossed).

Have a happy weekend!

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Cayman Islands

Cayman-Islands

I found this picture from the our Amazon cloud drive. The cloud drive shows pictures from “This day” and shows all the pictures taken on a particular day in different years. So, today it showed me this pic and I couldn’t help but share it here πŸ™‚

This was 7 years ago when we went to Cayman Islands. Sarath was only an year old and we bravely took the 2 week trip to a new country. It was an amazing trip. Our hotel was just a couple of minutes walk from the beach. We went to the beach everyday and Sarath had loads of fun playing in the sand.

The boat in the picture is the one we took to go a few miles into the ocean where the depth of the ocean was only about 5 feet. Β There we could see a lot of Sting Rays swimming around. The tour guide actually let us touch and feel the sting rays under the water. It was a unique experience.

 

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Lessons learned in 2015

Everyday I get blogging prompts in my email. A couple of days ago, the prompt was “What’s the most important lesson you learned in 2015”? When I saw this prompt, my immediate reaction was that “did I really learn something?” I thought hard and yes, I did learn a few things.

  • I learned to plan well during trips with kids. When we went to Orlando, FL for a week, we booked all the theme park tickets ahead of time and took all the printouts necessary. We booked comfortable flights even if they cost a bit more. S had gone on a business trip and flew to Orlando from there. I flew with the kids to Orlando. Since, I was flying alone with the kids, I planned extra carefully. All that planning paid off. We had a excellent trip and we were not that tired when we got back home. We also went to visit places with my parents in the Summer. Even then, we did an awesome job planning with the trip and the food. My mom does not eat garlic and she does not relish many foods here in the US. We went with proper ready to eat foods and other stuff which enabled all of us to have an enjoyable trip.
  • As a mom who always questions herself, I have learned that as the kids grow up, I really need to pick my battles. There are things that I simply have to let go and let my kids be themselves. They are too little to be themselves all the time but, I realized that I need to let them make their own mistakes and learn from it.
  • I realized that I have been doing the right thing by not bothering the kids about various activities outside of school. I let my 8 yr old have some free time in the evenings and I can see how his creativity comes through during those times. I have also learned to listen to my gut feeling even though the others do not agree with me.
  • I have learned to control my temper a little bit. This is a huge achievement in my case. If I get upset or mad, I used to yell at the kids or talk a bit harshly with S. I am very happy to say that I have changed a lot. I am not 100% there yet, but I am more than 60% there. Hopefully, I will keep that temper under control more often this year.

There are probably more things I actually learn’t but cannot remember much now. I would like to hear about the lessons you learn’t in 2015!! Blogatho

 

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Family Time

Holidays here are usually time for family re-unions. People here meet for Thanksgiving and Christmas. Somehow in the past 4 – 5 years, that has become the tradition for us as well. After we got married, we never traveled to India during Christmas. I don’t know why. We always travel to India in Summer cursing heat but enjoying the mangoes πŸ™‚ So, during Christmas holidays, we have been having family re-unions here. My BIL and SIL live in the US and so, we meet every year. It has been fun. Last year, my BIL had a baby and we went to visit the little one and we had a blast for 10 days. My SIL was there too and the kids had a gala time. This year, my in-laws are here from India and we were all together for about two weeks. It was fun. The kids as usual had a blast. When we came back, my in-laws and BIL & family came with us to visit Seattle. It was fun week.

My BIL’s son (1 year old) was the center of attraction for all these days. It was so much fun to watch him babble and walk around pulling everything he could get his hands on. Luckily, he did not have any stranger anxiety and played very well with all of us. They just left and the house looks all empty 😦 Luckily my in-laws are here for a few more days. So, the house is not all empty at once.

From tomorrow, it is back to work/school after a 3 week break. It’s going to be a tough week adjusting back to the routine. For the past 3 weeks, I have been so lazy waking up at 8:00 or 9:00 in the morning. The kids did not have a routine either and it is going to be so difficult to get them out of bed tomorrow morning. Though, I am partly glad to be back to routine, I am dreading this week. Hope all of you heading back to work tomorrow have a peaceful week.

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