Saturday, March 28, 2015

How to handle parents/in-laws leaving after childbirth

This year  also Sesame street "Let us Dance !!!" is coming to Austin. We went to this show  last year and our kids really loved it.There is a groupon that you should not miss Sesame Street Live. $22 ticket is for $12.Also there are a lot of 5$ deals in groupon that might interest you check these out Groupon 5$ a day deal.

My mom and my in-laws came to help us after the birth of  my son and daughter. As  the day for them to leave approached , I always panicked. When my son was born my mom left us when he was around 4 months and I still remember how I used to pester my mom and literally beg her to stay for some more days. I was worried as to how I was going to handle it all.

Last time when my in laws were about to leave my son was 2 1/2 years old and my daughter was 6 months old.Their flight got cancelled  and we extended their stay for a  week. I was so happy that they were going to be with us for one more week.  Though I know that I managed previously without help, I was worried about handling 2 kids now. I have two of my friends who are facing this situation and are very worried about it. Hope this post helps them and also others.

Some things that helped me to cope up are:
*I always told myself  that they cant stay forever with us . They have to leave at some point and that point is now and I have to be mentally prepared for it.
*I did not decide to have a baby based on their availability to help. It was so nice of them to come and do so much for me and now I have to take up responsibility.
*If  I am upset everyone including my spouse and kids are going to be upset. So I try to be calm and will tell myself "This too shall pass".
*Before they left I tried to come up with a list and a schedule on what important things I should get done everyday for the baby.
*If you are going to start a day care for your kid after they leave, start it a week before they leave so you get an idea of what to expect and in case the baby falls sick you have help at home.
* I was on bonding leave with my son for 2 months and I used to take him out whenever the weather was good. Also I joined  post natal yoga where I met other moms who were sailing in the same boat as me.
*I made a checklist of things for which I can get help
         *Dropping and picking up older  kid from school ( I hired a nanny for this)
          *Grocery shopping: If you have a small list and you know that your neighbor or someone will go shopping try to ask them if they can help out.
          *Find someone who cooks food for dinner so you dont have to worry about dinner (I used to get dabba service from someone who used to cook food and sell)
          *Try to find someone who can help you clean the house. (I hired a cleaning lady to tidy my house)
*I formed a network with other mommies and we had a play date at one of our friends house every Friday afternoon. I used to vent out there and also get some tips on how to handle some situations from other mommies. It really helped me to know that I was not alone.I wish I can do that now :)

Dont worry on how to manage things in  long term. When your kids are very young every day and every week counts. Try to take it day by day. Also don't plan something everyday and burn yourself out. Try to get all the help you can so you can march slowly towards that "one year" milestone. Once kids can walk and eat other solid foods and sleep more at nights you will feel a lot better. Hang in there it gets better.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

India Vs Australia what to expect !!!!

Spring is here and we are enjoying the wonderful weather. The garden work starts again.There are lot of leaves in our backyard  and I recently learned that dried  leaves are not good for the lawn we need to rake them. There is a good deal for a vacuum that collects these leaves Black & Decker BV5600 High Performance Blower/Vac/Mulcher. Check this out.

On 15th Feb here in US (14th Feb) we all  witnessed India Vs Pakistan, forgetting even Valentines day and enjoyed a  wonderful victory by our team . Then we all again geared up to watch India Vs South Africa on 22nd Feb. What a wonderful match it was and yes we won it again. Matches against UAE and Ireland were comparatively easy and I really pity those teams. West Indies did give a tough match but India still managed to win it. I watched the match against Zimbabwe and what a performance by the Indian team.

Finally India reached Quater finals and India Vs Bangladesh was an interesting match and we all know the story. Always the losing team cribs we cant do much about it.

Here we are in the semi-finals against a very competitive team. We all want India to win. There is no other country than India which really follows cricket this crazily. I wish  the Indian team good luck and it will be a proud moment for all of us if we grab the cup for the third time. Here are some tidbits about today's match:

  • Looks like 70% of the tickets in Sydney cricket ground is purchased by Indians , so expect more blue shirts than yellow shirts in the crowd.
  • Both teams will play under immense pressure. So expect more a lot of mistakes from both teams.
  • Most bookies have bet that Australia will  beat India.
  • Dhoni will not take a defeat in semi-finals
  • India has a very good line up of batsman which is a big plus.
  • Indian team fielding has been consistent and really good .
India has been undefeated in this series. Toss plays an important role will see if it will favor India. Good luck to my favorite team and hope they win. I am all set to enjoy the spectacle. What about you??. 

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Kids being kidnapped in Austin and surrounding areas??

Hello All, Hope all of you are having a nice week. I am enjoying the spring break to the max extent this week. I got these puzzles The Learning Journey Doubles Solar System that glows in the dark and The Learning Journey Match It! Spelling. This really keeps them well occupied during the day.

We always talk to our son about how not to interact much with strangers. I usually teach him things like, never get candy or anything from a stranger, never go with any stranger, always tell us when strangers follow you and we also teach him our home address and our phone numbers so he can tell someone to call us when he is lost. We rehearse this everyday on the way to his school and he answered everything correctly. A few days after this , he asked me  "Amma what does stranger mean?". I have no words to describe my feeling. Kids dont understand the depth of all that we tell them. 

Raji commented to this post and brought out a very good point 

"Stranger danger is actually not the biggest problem in society today. Every parent should read Protecting the Gift by Gavin de Becker. It explains what the real dangers are to children (and it is not strangers!) and tells you what to teach your kids when they get lost or are in trouble. For example, when lost somewhere, not to go to a policeman or man in uniform, but instead to find a mother, with kids, and ask for help. It explains why this is the best thing to teach your children to do. It also cautions against the age old "don't talk to strangers" and explains why children, even young ones, must be taught and given practice talking to strangers: in restaurants, or shops, asking for this or that. If they get lost or are in trouble, they need to be able to talk to the right strangers to get help, they must not be scared of strangers just because they are unknown to them."

Here is a link to buy the book Protecting the gift

In recent times I have been reading some NEWS on kids being followed and kidnapped in areas around Austin. 

In January and  February there was a white van following kids and trying to kid nap them from Brushy Creek Elementary school in Williamson County.

On Jan 19th there was a teen aged girl  jogging in the area around Brushy Creek and a white van followed her , a man in the van asked her to get into the van. The girl ran to her house and immediately called the Sheriff's  department.

On Feb 12th there was another incident where a white van followed a boy riding his bike in the neighborhood . The boy sped to his house and the van stopped few houses beyond his house and then drove away.

This white van created a lot of fear among the people in this neighborhood. Just be aware of this and also know the Sherrif Department's number in your area so you can call them immediately.Check here for  Texas Sheriff's list.

Keep your kids aware of this incident. Also ,I am planning to read the book "Protecting the gift"  and change the way I tell things to my kids about strangers. Please share your thoughts on this.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Medicine a service or business??

Hello All,  hope your weekend is all good. Spring weather is really nice and it feels good to get out of the house. Very busy weekend :).

Easter is fast approaching and there is a wonderful deal on Easter eggs. Check this out 24-Pack of Toy-Filled Plastic Easter Eggs.

Recently I had a very bad lower back pain. I saw a physiotherapist and went for 5 sessions. Later I saw the bill coming home. Since I haven't met my deductible yet I had to pay most of the session charges and I found that the amount they charged was ridiculous for the exercises I did there. When I called and asked them , they said it the correct amount and I have to pay it now.  It is very clear that the whole medical industry is turning out to be an excellent business these days.

The worst part is my pain is not gone yet and it never got better. So I stopped going for the sessions and trying to do exercises at gym. All this makes me feel that there is no link between medical industry and service.

Then I saw this interesting video by Dr B.M Hegdhe.

After watching video, I understand how we all are trapped by this big industry. Most doctors just go by the books.I have always wondered how they come up with the normal values for sugar, RBC ,WBC  and platelets count in blood, cholesterol e.t.c.  For some people the levels may not be under normal level and immediately the doctors attack them with a fear that something will happen and treat them unnecessarily.

There are also very few doctors who never treat unless it is necessary. Last time when we went to India, my daughter had mosquito bite infection. We took her to a well known pediatrician , when me and my husband asked him what we can do to make her feel better, he immediately said "pack your bags and go back to the US so you can free her from mosquitoes".

Most doctors are not like this and as Hegdhe mentions in the video, the drug industry lures the doctors with money and they treat and put innocent people under medication that is really not necessary. He also talks about more interesting things in the full video. If you are looking to read  a book that was written by him What doctors dont get to study in medical school check this out.Please share your thoughts on this. Have a nice week ahead.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

P.K. at home??

Hello All, Hope your week is sailing through  well. I think you all know about the second AR Rahman show being held in Austin on June 5th. Check out this page AR Rahman concert to know more updates.

I have heard from one of our friends that this Hoover SteamVac Carpet Cleaner with Clean Surge, F5914900 is a very good buy. As years pass by, after buying a house ,carpets get really dirty and this SteamVac does a great job in cleaning it like new. There is a 23% off on it and check it out.

Last time when we went to India, we got some CD's on stories of Lord Ganesha and Lord Krishna. Also we got a "Hanuman" book to read to our kids. These days we show them those CD's and also read the  book to our kids. Poor kids, they are very confused and always have trouble  in identifying the Gods. My daughter will just say elephant god for Ganesha and monkey god for Hanuman. My son is little older and he keeps asking so many questions. He doesn't like it when Lord Ganesha fights with Lord Shiva. He is very confused as to why suddenly there is a snake in Lord Krishna's story.

When we read about Ramayana to him , he is very very upset as to why all Gods fight so much with each other. He always asks  "Who is peace God amma?".

If you have read this post "I love the traffic these days, want to know why??" I have mentioned that we teach slogams to our kids during the morning drive to school. After chanting slokas I will usually put some devotional songs, today I showed a song on Goddess Durga. He saw a picture where Goddess Durga was sitting on a lion. He got really scared and asked me , "Will that god run away when the lion roars". I could not control my laughter. I tried to explain to him that the lion will not roar and the goddess is more powerful. He did not seem convinced.

As I listened to all his questions, I am confused about my beliefs now. I am not an atheist, but I am confused as to  why we have so many gods in our mythology and why there is always a fight to show the good is more powerful than evil. Also I wonder how I took all that what my parents said. Kids these days are more curious about everything.

I think most of you might have watched the P.K. movie. I really liked the concept and the way it was filmed.  These days I feel like I am watching that movie all over again everyday , only change is that my son is Aamir Khan and his name is Pranav Krishnamurthy (P.K.).I feel the same way I felt for Aamir Khan in that movie when I see my son. Please share your thoughts. Have a nice rest of the week. See you on Sunday with another interesting post..Stay tuned :)

Sunday, March 8, 2015


Happy Women's day !!!! Check out this post about Women's day that I posted last year After all it is women's day !!. Ladies pamper yourself with this purse Dasein Maxwell Deep-Gloss Triple-Zip Emblem Satchel for $29.99 with free shipping.

When you say “Mylapore”, to people in Chennai they only think of a suburb in Chennai City. For most people in Sacramento/Tahoe area this means something else. Immediately they would say “very good and tasty food”. They can connect it to only “Mylapore” the Authentic South Indian vegetarian restaurant that is located in the heart of Folsom city in Sacramento, California. San Francisco and other areas near the bay, collectively called as “Bay Area” has many Indian restaurants. I personally know people who drive from Bay area to Folsom, just to taste the food from this restaurant. Most Indians who have visited Lake Tahoe have already discovered this amazing restaurant on their way to Tahoe. Whenever I go to California, I will never miss an opportunity to eat in Mylapore.

What is so great about this restaurant?? . In US, we have seen that many Indian restaurants pop up; initially their food is very good and tasty but gradually its quality decreases and when people are not really happy about the restaurant, it vanishes. Mylapore on the other hand was opened in 2008 and till today, maintains its quality and taste. How is this even possible? . They cook food fresh everyday and the Thali menu changes every day. Coconut is ground every 2 hours or as needed with fresh coconut.The owner of this restaurant takes comments and feedback's very seriously and is constantly thinking of innovative ways to improve the restaurant and the service to its customer. 

Check this website to know more about the menu items in Mylapore Restaurant . You will notice that all items on the menu are under $10 which makes this restaurant very affordable. Latest top 10 dishes in the restaurant are
1.      Chinna Vengaya Uthappam
2.       Mini Tiffin
3.      Mylapore Special Dosai
4.      Paratha Vegetable Kurma
5.      Cauliflower 65
6.      Vegetable Briyani
7.      Onion Rava Dosai
8.      Poori masala
9.      Poongal Vadai
10.   Kothu Parotta

They also deliver food within 4 mile radius (wish it was 4000 miles J). Recently they have introduced a 16 oz plan which includes 4 boxes of 16 oz sambar, rasam, kootu and curry. This is an amazing plan. Also they have many specials going on, from time to time.
In India, women get a lot of break from kitchen either through good restaurants, where they can eat out or through weddings and other functions where they can just go and eat. In the US, these two are very rare and whenever I take a break from kitchen and eat out, I feel guilty of feeding my family junk food. If there is a restaurant like Mylapore near my house, I will never worry about it. Hope we have some restaurants like Mylapore or even a branch of Mylapore in other cities in US (first one being in Austin, yes I am a little selfish). People  in Folsom, I really envy you :)

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Is Rape new ??

Hello All, the school closure kept us busy today, managing kids and working from home is the toughest thing and I did it again.  Was very pleased with the weather though.

My favorite Thai restaurant has a deal Thai Passion. They have very good food , think I went there too much during pregnancy due to cravings and my kids really love their food now.

I saw the documentary on the gang rape that happened in Delhi, India. Is rape new ?? Rape is prevalent in our old epic stories, then it is very much prevalent during World War times , search for "comfort women"  to know more about it. It is still there.

What really new is  that they make a  documentary on  it and why is BBC worried about it??  "Pure money" they will surely make more  money out of this whole thing right??.

When I take back my memories of being a teenager,  I was never allowed to be outside the house beyond 7 p.m. I used to hate my parents for this strict rule. I am pretty sure most of you will be able to relate to this. I never understood why. These rape cases gave me the answer.

I read many comments on this documentary on Face Book , but what we have to understand is  we can never change things over night,especially in Indian community. I read an article few weeks back with title "Women can't have it all". Even if we shout and preach about "Equality" for years ,we are still not there yet. Even if you are a VP/CEO of a company, in  Indian families ,when lunch or dinner has to be served on the table everyone looks at the woman of the house.

Things are changing a lot in Indian families that have settled/been abroad. In India, most of the things are still the same. If I was in India , on seeing this documentary I might have thought "Why did this girl go out that late". When I sit in US and see the documentary I can talk other way.

The saddest part of  "RAPE" is . it is not just an issue by itself. There are so many things entangled along with it. We can't free the thread  unless we free each knot one at a time .I dont think there will be any change in the situation unless people have a broader look on things, moms talk to sons about treating women, break the disparity between the rich and poor, media stop showing women as sex dolls, people stop having kids that they cant raise, deviate the minds of young guys and girls in the right direction etc.

Please share your thoughts. All said,  I am a mom and I have a daughter and I can feel the pain !!!. 

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

A surprise visitor !!!!

Hello All, The weather in Austin certainly doesn't  feel like spring. It is March and we  have school  closure due to bad weather tomorrow.Is this due to "global warming??".

A.R Rahman is coming to different cities in North America to perform. Check out  the concert dates here AR Rahman's Intimate Concert 2015 dates. He is coming to Austin on June 4th. He is my all time favorite and check out my previous post about him The Oscars. Both me and my husband love his songs, we are thinking on how we both can go to the concert and what to do with the kids. Please post  any ideas on how you all are planning it. Since the concert starts late and ends late in the night, I dont know how it will work with sitters to watch the kids.

There is a very nice dicer on sale for 15.99 check this out Nicer Dicer plus. It is a very good purchase for this price.

These days, we are very busy and  we dont have time to call and entertain people at home. Weekends fly just like that in preparing for the week. I feel things are very very mechanical. My brain has some things recorded which it plays everyday. This is when I think it would be nice to be in a profession like acting or singing or something related to art where you work for sometime and take a nice break before next project (Grass on the other side is always greener).

Yesterday my husband stepped out to pick up a package and he came inside and asked me to see what was there, since something  was hiding near the corner of our door. At first I thought it was a mouse. To my surprise it was a rabbit !!. My kids were  excited to see the rabbit !!!.

We gave her some water and carrots. We really wanted to have her as a pet, after thoughts we decided not to. I left a small blanket outside for her, since it was very cold. She never moved while we were watching her. Then we slept.

First thing in the morning after we woke up, my son wanted to see the rabbit, so I opened the door but she was gone. He was very sad, so was I :( . He kept asking me where and why the rabbit went away. .I just told him that the rabbit's mother came and took her away. He then looked at me and said  "Amma ,I love you , I know you will come and get me, if I am lost". These words melted my heart.

Some times in a busy life we never get the time to tell our kids that we are there for them, but somehow they know it. I am happy we got a chance to talk about it  through this rabbit. Good night and share your thoughts, stay tuned for another post on Sunday.

Sunday, March 1, 2015

The First !!!

The weather is Austin is very very gloomy and I know most of us don't have the mood to do anything. We were  just lazing around and my son finished one activity book that I just got him yesterday. Time to find another one for him now.

 My mom retired this weekend, I wish her a happy retired life !!!

Only today there is a 56% off on H&R block in amazon. You can select any of the software that suits your needs from this list H&R block Tax software Deluxe Win 2014.

This women's perfume is a great deal on Groupon with 50% off. Versace Bright Crystal Women's Eau de Toilette Mini; 0.17 Fl. Oz. for $9.99 (original price $20)

We all are always excited about "The First"  things that happen  in our life. We are very happy when we walk first, talk first, learn and explore things first, get appreciated first, first day of college, first job, first bike, first car,first flirt, first love, first kiss, first kid etc..

The first things are exciting since there are many unknowns in them. The moment you know more about it , it becomes boring. Life is a journey where we seek these first things that makes us happy.

I talked about all the best first things, but what really shapes a person is how  he/she reacts to the first worst things that happen  Your first trial where you could not talk or walk, the first failure, be it in exam, life ,love etc.

 I still remember the day I failed on my car driving test,  I cried saying "I have never failed in anything in my life". May be that was bad.

 Now I believe firmly  that, these first fails teach you a lot more.It makes you tough and makes you move towards the goal. I  wish you all good luck and also some good failures from which you learn many things. Life is a cycle of good and bad things, we all are happy during good things but have to learn how to handle the worst. Good night , share your thoughts and meet you soon with another topic on Wednesday.

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