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Showing posts from 2015

Baby on Board

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Traveling with a kid and worried about how to pack up everything? No worries! Okay, honestly, worry a little, because there is a good news and a bad news! Lets get done with the bad news first. There is a lot, literally lot of packing to do. And here is the real bad news, if you forget even a single thing, it will leave you with quite a few panic stricken moments! Now the good news! I have a check list of things to ensure you pack everything! Rest assured it has everything as I travel almost every month with my child. He stays put weekend-to-weekend at his grand parents' place and I continue my work travel plans during the weekdays in between. I have been doing this since my kid was one month old. So trust me when I say I have everything on this list, I do have everything on the list.

Last minute packing (Say about 30 mins before you start the journey)

Feed for the journey Feed after the journey (I am always prepared with an extra feed, just in case the journey gets prolonged)Regul…

Interdependence is a Virtue!

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I  have spent too much time distinguishing between independence and interdependence. Spent more time in confusing between the two and further more time on justifying how independence was the winner. But fighting against something so profound and true is a lost battle even before it begins.

Almost 10 years back, while doing an exercise with my mentor on "Personal Values", we had this discussion. I still remember every little detail of that conversation! He had asked me to write down what I stand for. "Independence" happened to be among the top 3 choices on my list. With a curious smile my mentor asked me "Why independence?" I had a long list of reasons why I chose independence - how I want to be on my own, not dependent on anyone for anything, have a solid career, and a lot more. He was still smiling (That smile, so curious and yet so assuring!) He asked me "Are you mixing up Self Sufficiency with Independence? Why are you not choosing Interdependenc…

Little joys of life!

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Rush hours, back to back travels, year end pressures, ups and downs in performances, unexpected breakdowns, juggling family and work life, craving for that get away with your partner... Stop! I said to myself a few months back! This is always going to be like this and it is endless. More often than not, I do love it this way, that is the reason it has been working and fulfilling me for almost a decade now! But not accepting it is an overload sometimes, isn't going to stop it from being an overload sometimes! Since then I decided to stop finding time for a few things and just do them instead. Initially, I thought I was wasting time, but then, why kill yourself for a few moments spent randomly? Self criticism can sometimes hold you back a little too much! Honestly, doing these things have given me a great booster and raised my spirits instantly!
Having "Our" time - My Partner, Kid and I! (This is one of my favorites and we do it every weekend!)Take a few photos or videos o…

For the love of Local Food

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In the last few months, a lot of people I know are traveling abroad for a vacation. This also follows suite the "big problem" - packing food supplies. In fact, that is exactly how I came to know that they are traveling soon and needed my advice on stocking up food. (Clearly a wrong choice to ask someone who lives on local food where ever I go!) They might be asking because I have visited the places on their itinerary. I am always amazed by the need to stock up on food while traveling for pleasure. I mean, isn't exploring a new place includes the local food as well? Since, my experience of people needing food stocks during travels are much more than people who rely on local food, I am dedicating this post on my love for "Local Food" and its benefits.

Health benefit of local food is that it is grown, cooked and consumed in the same region and climate. It is fresh, cooked with the recipes of that region (lets not forget, staple foods are tagged that way for a reas…

Tummy Talks

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This blog's photo is not what you think it is. It's really not what you think it is! I am not at all promoting over eating! In fact it's just the opposite! I have around 6-7 meals every day and hence the need to plan. Unfortunately we realize weight gain rather late (No, it does't happen suddenly!) and so it feels that losing weight takes hell lot of time. In the pursuit of losing weight, we forget that most difficult is to maintain your ideal weight! My grand father once told me that consistency in your weight for a long time is a definite sign of being healthy! It is good to remember that as I have always been in the normal BMI band (even as a chubby teenager!) I have been in the 2 kgs plus minus ideal weight since the year 2000. I put on 12 kgs during my pregnancy and lost all of it in the next year going back to the ideal weight I had since 2000. The only reason I am sharing this is to emphasize what I am saying is tried and tested! If it worked for me for almost …

Beating around the bush

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"I feel my day is wasted if I do not work out. I shouldn't be eating so much if I haven't worked out today. I am a loser that I stayed up till late last night and now I am waking up tired. Look at my face all bloated and dark circles under my eyes due to the party night..." and my list of cursing myself at the beginning or end of the day used to be endless. In spite of being regular at fitness regimes and good eating habits, I used to beat myself up so bad that, such days exhausted me! In a nut shell a seemingly insignificant reason costed me a good day, then that night started on a bad note, ruining my next morning because the previous night was bad. This cycle continued until that point when I had my "Aha" moment.

Workouts are supposed to make you feel energized and de-stressed. This type of self-beating only did the opposite. I was confusing discipline with being hard on myself! I do not miss workouts because I am procrastinating. I clearly didn't h…

Happy-mess!

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Parenthood is a sophisticated word for happiness, multitasking and believe it or not, chaos all at the same time in your life. I really don't think happiness and multitasking need any contextual explanations here. But chaos, well, the chaos in this case enhances your happiness, because a baby makes your world inherently happy. It teaches you to cherish little things as they happen, because they are going to change as the kid grows. And it makes the mess around you seem reasonable, because this is the only mess that won't harm you in anyway! You know you are experiencing Happy-mess when:
You are leaving for work and your baby does potty in his pants. You ditch everything, pick him up and run to the bathroom when he starts kicking in air! (Its so much fun!) While joining him in his laughter and noises, you are deep down hoping the potty doesn't fall off on the way, or worse, on you! Somehow you manage to remove the underwear without increasing the mess it has already made. F…

Loudspeakers & Amplifiers

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There is a human species where loudspeakers and amplifiers are builtin features. I know this for sure, because I might be one of the first members of this club! I am guessing I was born with a loud voice. If not, I certainly took after it at an early age as even my vivid childhood memories have me speaking loudly.To bring in a few facts, on an average I speak loudly even when there are few people in a small room. When I am talking on phone or in a crowded place, save yourselves, I shout! And, when I am excited or emotionally stimulated, run for your lives, I yell!

Thankfully, I am surrounded by people who compulsively correct one another. Given my history, I get nudged at my voice too often! I practice breathing exercises, anticipating my triggers in advance, and I have even gone to the extent of recording my voice at different emotional states for revisiting and then correcting myself. What it taught me is this - Introspection is great, Controlling is detrimental. All the above acti…

Pre-Get Away!

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The thought of a get away in itself is so relaxing! It doesn't really matter if it's long or short, I am already on a vacation at least 3 days prior to my travel emotionally (who isn't?) and also for preparing to get set go (which I rarely see others doing.) And when there's no preparation, there's so much pressure at the last moment which affects the quality of one's vacation. Hurry actually ensures you forget something even if little, later turning out to be a huge problem during your vacation. If that's not the case, then disastrous at your home while you are enjoying your vacation. Either which way, it lands you in trouble. And believe it or not, the pleasure of our journeys are determined more by the mindset with which we travel than the destination. So to rid yourself of half done things, it is a good idea to have a preparation countdown too!

Here's what I do before I leave. Good News! It's just 5 tasks each day with a last 30 minutes of run …

Fitness begins with being happy with "Me"

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The significance and place for Fitness has been in my routine ever since I remember my childhood days. What is funny though, is the way I learnt its importance - As a defense mechanism. I am a chronic asthmatic patient which was detected at the age of 9-10 years or may be even before that. As a toddler and pre-adolescent, I was plump-ish in shape in spite of having sports in my routine which affected my confidence in a very adverse way. Funnily enough, being committed to sports wasn't difficult for me even at that age. What I struggled till I reached mid 20s was the comparisons!

From the teens I have always been quite lean! Unfortunately by then I had associated so much anger to the comparisons that my fitness failed to show its great effects in my spirits! I had lost all the confidence long time back, so I could never recognize that I am enough fit that it looks very good to be in my own skin! Today at 30, I can clearly identify how my perspective, training regimes and its benef…

English Breakfast

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Nothing works like a Sunday Brunch at home! You save so much time in cooking on the weekend and can use that extra time to indulge in something interesting! The spread was selected from this link which distinguishes the Traditional English Breakfast items! Although the eggs in a typical English Breakfast are fried eggs, our members for brunch loved scrambled eggs. So that's the only personal preference change. The ingredients are from the authentic spread, though! :-)

Our Brunch had -

Toasts (brown bread)Eggs (scrambled)SausagesBaked beansMashed PotatoesCup of tea
Trust me all these items are made quicker than you think, but are very filling! I enjoyed looking at the happy faces at the brunch!

Your Place!

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I was surprised to see many people get surprised with the fact that I do not feel the frustrations of finding the things I need, just in time. Or even feel that the space I have is less than what I actually need. After seeing a lot of people struggle with the lack of space and frustrations regarding it, I deliberately extended my observations to understand why that happens! Because, honestly, I do not feel these things!

Our homes and offices are the two places where we spend most of our time. If we discount frequent travelers, many of us fall into the category where 85% or more of our time gets spent in these two places. A terrible frustrating impact is inevitable, if these places do not have what we really need. Or if they did, but don't have any order, it will surely be inconvenient for us to use them just in time and experience their benefits. In my opinion, the problem isn't in the lack of things we need, but, because of its excess. Neither it is in the lack of space but t…

Admiration forever

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You don't need to experience attention, approval and admiration in a particular order to know the difference. When you do, you will mock attention, find approval unnecessary and be among those who admire you. 
And eventually reach a place where you will carry with you the admirable qualities of people, give up the conditions applied relationships, and finally, attention seeking tactics will no longer work on you! 

Life City

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There is no such phrase as "Life City" so there is no reason why an opposite of, say "Lifeless City" should exist! But, I have come to believe that given a deeper thought, there might exist such phrases. In colloquial English language, they are already called as 'Small Cities' and 'Metro Cities'. In much sophisticated words, they are also addressed as  'B' Tier Cities and 'A' Tier Cities in India. If we go into describing them briefly, the so called 'B' Tier cities have relatively slow lifestyles, distances can be covered on an average within 20 minutes from any point, and most importantly, people have time to indulge in a lot of interests after work. If we compare 'A' Tier cities on these points, obviously the life is super fast (read insufferable delays), average distances are 40 minutes from any point and people are half dead by the time they finish their daily work.

I have had the privilege of experiencing a life…

Tiffin Ideas and Breakfast

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Kids in school, you are racking your brains for the tiffin ideas, you narrow down a dish only to realize it was sent yesterday - seems like a real struggle daily, isn't it? This happens even when kids are not in the equation! The point is, whoever is running on a schedule is always worried about the breakfast. In kids cases, moms ensure something is packed, but the same moms ignore themselves and skip this important meal! Others just land up compromising the breakfast for millions of reasons while you just need one to have it - "Health is wealth", respect it!

If you are an Indian, it is actually an irony of our lives, because there is so much variety in our food. But when it comes to packing the tiffin boxes or making breakfast, we are left blank! In my opinion, the problem is not in the available options but the fact that we do not have them written in front of us while making the meal plans. (I know I am a compulsive list maker! :-D) It is very easy to plan your meals…

Pregnancy Crises and my Coping Tricks

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The making of a baby inside you and actually giving birth, is indeed an ennobling feeling. I have had the chance to experience it and have loved everything about it! In spite of that, I deliberately use "crises" in the title. With utmost honesty, I am sharing my reasons of pregnancy crises and what actually helped me cope up with it.
The life of both the parents changes for good, but the mother has to give up everything for a certain period of her life to encompass this new phase. The maternity leave doesn't begin with the birth, it begins from the time you declare "you are expecting". On Professional front - your organization starts excluding you from new developments. On Personal front - you start losing your hard earned body (Yes, I am a fitness freak! You can check my page on this topic here!), your food habits (luckily I didn't have to make much changes, but I have seen many struggle with this too!), your sex life (Only safe time is mid-trimester. Som…