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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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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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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Concerned brother

Yesterday Sarath was sick and he had to stay home from school. Poor kid was throwing up all night and woke up with a mild fever. He was in a bad state. So, he was resting on the sofa in the morning while I was trying to get Sanjay ready for school. As soon as Sanjay realized that his brother was sick, he too pretended to be sick He curled up with Sarath under the comforter saying he is too sick to go to school. Somehow we got him ready. Sarath wasn’t up to eating anything so, I let him be. Seeing that Sanjay flat out refused to eat anything. I had to create stories for him to finish his breakfast.

All day in school apparently he was complaining that he was tired and needs to rest. Since his teacher knew what happened at home, she handled it somehow. After coming back home was the toughest part. Sarath still had high temperature in the evening and was just lying down. This was so hard for Sanjay. He did not leave his brother’s side for a long time. He was getting mad for every small thing. I think he was feeling bad that Sarath cannot play with him, jealous about the attention I was giving Sarath and totally helpless. I sat with Sanjay and cuddled him and talked to him for a while. But, nothing helped. Between Sarath’s refusal to eat anything and Sanjay’s constant plea for attention, I did not even get to make proper dinner yesterday. Finally, before dinner Sarath’s temperature came to normal. He was up for a little bit and both the kids sat together talking and reading their favorite book. Sanjay was so happy that Sarath was up.

Since, I did not get to work much in the morning, S took care of getting the kids to bed while I was catching up on my work. This did not help Sanjay at all. He did not fall asleep. An hour later, I had to go and cuddle him, give him lots of hugs and kisses and rock him for a little time, before he was ready to sleep. After all the extra attention, he was happy and finally decided to fall asleep.

When Sanjay fell asleep, I couldn’t help thinking how the kids minds work. It was adorable to see Sanjay being so concerned about his brother and at the same time wanting to get my attention. Sarath is now doing well. He does not have a temperature anymore and hopefully I can get him to eat something today.

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Out of Hibernation

I feel like I can breathe again. It has been hectic since January. Even though I was happy that work was keeping me busy, it also hit me hard that working as a freelancer is no piece of cake. All the stress of work and home are finally getting to me and I feel more depressed and lazy than ever. I just feel like curling up on the sofa reading a book just like I used to do when I was in college πŸ™‚ But, since I cannot afford to do that and also because I am tired of feeling like this, I decided that coming back to blogging regularly should help me. So, here I am after a loooong break.

So many things happened that I wanted to write about but, never made the time for it. Hopefully, I will write more often.

Sanjay is going to be 4 pretty soon. I cannot believe how fast the kids are growing up. Sanjay can read small words now and likes to read a book all by himself. Yesterday, Sarath was teaching Sanjay how to read. That was the cutest thing ever. Sarath was so patient. As for me, I am loving this current phase of life as I feel the kids are their best ages. They can play together and generally spend time together. Their interests are mostly similar. They can spend hours together building tracks, or lego’s. That also means that they fight like crazy. But, I do not interfere most of the times and I can hear them fighting, crying and laughing again all in a span of 5 min πŸ™‚

Sarath is in that cute age where he can neither be called a little kid nor a big kid. Sometimes he acts so mature and there are times when he suddenly behaves like a 3 yr old! But, I guess when he grows out of this phase, I am going to miss it. Over the weekend, I had severe throat infection and was very sick. Sarath made green tea for me! I gave him instructions and he did really good. He not only made the tea, but also carried the hot cup all the way upstairs without spilling one drop!!! I was happy beyond words. The one thing I am having trouble with is getting Sarath to eat lunch everyday. That has been driving my crazy. He is usually very good with food. He has his reservations with trying out new food but, otherwise he eats a variety of food. But, lately, the lunch box always comes back half full 😦 His usual complaint is that he does not have time which I agree to an extent. I am constantly trying out new combinations of snack and lunch to give him a variety of healthy foods to eat. Let’s hope that works.

Now that April is here, we are able to see more sun πŸ™‚ So, I am taking the kids onto the trail regularly and it just feels so nice to be outside. Can’t wait to start my garden (aka potted plants)! So, that’s it for today. How have you all been doing? I will hop over to your blogs and read your posts eventually.

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The grey sky

Here are some pictures that show the Seattle weather in winter. The grey sky is finally getting to me and I cannot wait to see more sun 😦 Especially today, it has been raining non stop and the gloominess is just unbearable.
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Birthday Celebrations

Originally, I wasn’t going to write a post about my birthday. But, now I feel like I should document this day. Today, as usual I woke up earlier than everybody. I went down to enjoy my morning cup of tea. I called my parents and talked with them for over an hour. Then, I talked to my brother for a while.Β By this time the kids were awake and they had their milk and were playing. Usually Sarath is good at remembering birthdays. Today, he forgot. When S reminded him, he was happy that it was my birthday. He made a big deal out of everything. He kept telling me that I should take total rest today and he and S will cook and make everything for me. After that S declared that I am not allowed into the kitchen πŸ™‚

I was very happy to oblige with that. After they took over the kitchen, I spent my time applying henna to my hair, having a relaxed shower and getting dressed. By the time I came down after my shower, lunch was half way done!! S is an amazing cook. Sometimes he has more patience than me. He made bisibelebath with appadams for lunch and it was very yummy. After lunch, I had to go to Seattle for a meeting. By the time I came back, the house was empty. I knew S and the kids had gone to the grocery store. I called and asked S if I should come but, he asked me not to come. So, I made some tea and settled down with my laptop to get some work done. After about an hour, S called and said that hey have a surprise for me and I should close my eyes πŸ™‚

So, I sat on the sofa like a little kid and closed my eyes with my hands. Then all of them came in and gave me my surprises. They got me a musical card, a happy birthday balloon, two small cakes, chips and my favorite ice cream πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ The kids were so excited to give me the surprises. Looking at their happy faces made my day πŸ™‚ This is the only time we get to have a girly cake πŸ™‚

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S was worried that this cake will not be enough for all of us. So, he bought another cake – tiramisu. They also bought potato chips because according to Sanjay, birthday should have cake and chips πŸ™‚

IMG_1588They also got me this beautiful balloon πŸ™‚

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After eating the cake, S gave me the gift I actually asked for. A couple of months back, S made some amazing chilli panneer. It was so amazing that I don’t like chilli panneer anywhere else now πŸ™‚ I asked him to make it for me today. So, after the cake, he made the chilli panneer. I ate so much today that I don’t think I am going to be hungry for breakfast tomorrow.

Before going to bed, Sarath got the balloon and clipped it to the lamp shade on my night stand. When I walked in, I did not see it immediately. But, when I saw it, I was just very very happy. Kids are so thoughtful sometimes πŸ™‚

 

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New Year Resolutions

I used to make New Year Resolutions when I was in school and college. In the past few years, I had stopped making resolutions as I know I will forget about them in a few days. But, this year I think I need to have a few resolutions so that I give up some bad habits and make some good ones. Writing them here makes them real. I am also hoping that I will strive to achieve them so that next year, I can write about what I accomplished. So here are my resolutions:

1. Stop Procrastinating: This is one of my very bad habits. I put things away as much as possible and tend to do them at the very end when I have no choice. I keep doing this with my work as well. Especially if there is something that is not straight forward, I tend to postpone it. I am hoping to totally get rid of this habit. I have already started working towards it but, I need a lot of motivation to make this a habit.

2. Spend more time with the kids: This is something I have done a lot in the past year and would like to do more this year as well. I want to do some art projects with them, take them outdoors to sledding or skiing and generally spend some one-on-one quality time with them. They are growing up too fast and I really want to create some good memories πŸ™‚

3. Make health a priority:Β Last year, I put a lot of effort to making healthy food at home. I got pretty good at making a variety of foods that are easy for the kids to eat at lunch and are healthy. This year I am going to add going to the gym and getting fit a priority. Myself and S have started going to the gym since November. We have been pretty good at it – S more than me. Initially I thought losing weight and the fat around my tummy should be the priority. But, if I don’t lose weight, I do not want to get discouraged. I want to keep exercising. So, getting fit is my goal.

4. Lose my fear of speaking: I have a big fear of speaking in front of an audience. But, since I am working for myself, I need to market myself to get more work. That involves a lot of talking to people and networking which I am not good at. I do not know where to start but, I vowed to myself that I will get better at it.

5. Spend more time on my hobbies: I love scrap-booking and sewing. I haven’t been making time to do any of those in the past couple of years. I miss that a lot. I already have plans of sewing quilts for the kids. I need to somehow make time to do that.

I think that is enough resolutions for this year. So, let’s see how much I can do this year.

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Simple Pleasures in Life

– The way Sarath’s face lights up when he see’s me at the bus stop in the evening. Makes me melt thinking that some one is just so happy to see me πŸ™‚

– Cuddling with the kids in the morning and whispering silly words and playing silly games.

– Receiving a bouquet of roses from S for our anniversary!

– Receiving a manicure set from my best friend when I visited her in the holidays.

– Spending two weeks being absolutely lazy. When kids had the winter break, I took a break from my work too. It was amazing – no school to worry about, no boxes to pack, no work and all the day to ourselves.

– Watching the kids play together while sipping tea and reading a magazine πŸ™‚

– Actually being able to write something on the blog today πŸ™‚

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