52 Weeks of Avantika


Sun and Fun!

Reality? Ha ha ! Looks are so deceptive!

  • 3 degrees Celsius outside our warmed up car.
  • Sunny outside but a tantrum inside ! Not only is my angel upset that half her goldfish crackers fell down during snacktime but also that I did not talk to her at a red light. (Never mind that I was concentrating on the construction work near the signal and that the goldfish accident was her fault)
  • It’s only only 1pm. But sunset is only about 4 hours away. Definitely more bleak than it looks.
  • Aunt Flo is killing me. 

Oh well, life is like that. I did turn it around by 

  • Asking T if she wanted to do a puzzle before lunch or after. She chose after.
  • Since we were having dosas for lunch, I allowed T to choose what shape of Dosa she wanted: she got a nice Spider-dosa and one Xmas-tree-dosa.
  • Pretending we are lions basking in the sun and napping. While this was after about three hours, T did sleep. I too got about 15mins of downtime.
  • We did stop in our parking lot to admire the trees and colors for a while minute.

This post was Part of 52 weeks of Avantika. I shall post a picture and/or Quote  like the heroine of my book Avantika. But unlike the principal character of my book shall post every Saturday for a year instead of daily. 


 Travel & Adventure

Our road trip cum family vacation have begun which means I am doing loads of challenges:

  • Eating healthy- lots of treats consumed 
  • Getting vegetarian options. Since I do not eat eggs, meat, fish, chicken in any form; my choices are limited at restaurants. Then, I have to think about hitting all the food groups.
  • T’s food: I confess, she has had a few more treats than necessary.
  • Not being stressed- tough with sticking to a preschooler’s schedules
  • My lack of confidence in driving: with our rental car being enormous, it’s even more difficult for me.
  • T’s mild motion sickness: not too severe but enough for us to be cautious

But there are good parts too:

  • We mostly ate in. So, we got healthy food with portions I could control
  • We packed plenty of healthy snacks. Nuts and multi grain crackers have kept me from devouring too many unhealthy alternatives. (Yup, I did pack a lot of junk! ūüėź)
  • T sleeps in the car, so her early rising and afternoon naps are compensated. And she’s sleeping not too long past bedtime.
  • Since car times are also naps, T’s  health is ok. Touch Wood!
  • Bonus: I read a book, courtesy my SIL. Yayy!
  • All the places we went had at least one strict vegetarian option on the menu, that included protein and veggies. So far, so good!
  • I have driven our seemingly gigantic car and have lived to tell the tale! So, definitely not an issue of grave (pardon the pun) concern any longer! 

I also realized again that life is indeed full of little troubles and challenges that make us feel helpless, clueless and troubled! But in the same vein, life is filled with many moments of little joys and tiny triumphs! And these are what need to be cherished, remembered and drawn upon when we feel low or inadequate! 

On that optimistic note, Adieu until next week! Be happy and healthy! 

Resolutions : Quarterly Update

This post is the quarterly update on the Year’s Goals. Now, my Resolutions for 2017 were:

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2017 Resolutions

As of today, I have finished reading three books. These are listed on my Books- 2017 Page. Hurrah! I am well on track!

I have managed to add my thoughts every week on this blog as my posting activity shows:

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Posting Activity from WordPress Stats

I managed to steer clear of unhealthy items even during T’s birthday. I even staved off desserts when our¬†friends came over this¬†weekend and we had fun hosting multiple¬†get-togethers and social dos.

Until this week!

What with the snowing, late hours for Hubs and fussiness of my adorable preschooler, it seems like I am using chips as a mood booster! Sure, they are Kettle Cooked, Wavy, and Delicious! But, still unhealthy! It seems like I simply cannot summon any more willpower after holding my patience and words with T. I have indulged twice already: Monday and Tuesday. I greatly fear that my winning streak might bust. Hence, this post in the middle of the week- for boosting my mood and will power! [I have also put away the bag of chips in a dark corner of the pantry where it will be hard to access!]

With great hopes,

Stay warm and healthy!

(Not) Calm- Daily Prompt

Today’s post is in response to the Daily Prompt¬†challenge over at Daily Post- my favorite stop for inspiration.

Here are my thoughts on Calm:

I am not CALM! When you add up the¬†facts: that I am quite diplomatic (yes really), have a good life; have always been comfortable with myself and only chased after stuff I want and not because it’s popular/ trending (thanks Dad! I know I get this trait¬†from you!) ; you’d think I’d be in a nirvana state of mind, happy and calm. But I never am. Happy-mostly! Calm- rarely!

I am quite volatile! Maybe because I am a woman? Is it because I am a mom? Is my creative spirit to blame? Genes? Too much Internet? Who knows? I have never wondered and seriously, I can’t be bothered?

Moving on to things that do calm me down, a few pictures to illustrate the point:


Sound of water, rustle of leaves- so calming!


Babies! Who can resist smiling and gushing? Instant mood changers!


Glorious sunsets, lush verdant grass, vast spaces- never fails to inspire tranquil emotions

I have to add here that I also find gazing at my painted nails rather fun. I know, I am obsessed with feet and painted toes! I wrote at length about it here.


Vast imposing structures- makes you feel humbled and awed. Definitely rips away any negative emotions


At this point, I also have to point out that I rate being happy and feeling blessed and the ability to enjoy life far above being calm. Calm but boring, not bad, but not my cup of tea either. And for the record, I like coffee better. I also like lemonade and kokum juice!

(Kokum is a fruit for the uninitiated. Kokum syrup mixed with generous helping of water, with a dash of rock salt and lemon- ahh!!! Bliss! And when you have it in scorching summers, ooh! A taste of heaven in every sip!)

This has been quite a rambling sort of post- from my not being calm to pondering over the reasons, meandering to ways to calm down to finally a recipe. But that’s me- I think a lot. I opine even more. I care too much and probably share just as much. But that’s just why I will never be calm- too much going on, loads to do and enjoying every minute of it!


Challenges- Looking Ahead

This week’s post is about the challenges i am planning for next year. Still undecided, I thought sharing my possible goals for next year (not so far now) would not only be fun but also give me more clarity to take final decisions. 

So, here goes:

  • Reduce sugar in my coffeee and tea- my biggest and possibly only temptation. Ever since turning thirty, I want to be more conscious about my food habits. Plus, I want to set a positive example for T. 
  • Read 12 books
  • Post every week- almost accomplished this year. So, I have hopes for the coming one
  • Keep off screens an hour before bed- my mom is trying this out and I felt it might be a worthy challenge for me as well.
  • Start budgeting. Hubs and I are not spendthrifts- we can hardly be: living on one income. But, I feel after five years of married life, it is high time I start paying closer attention to our finances. Who knows what nuggets I might find to stretch our wallets? Still sitting on this one though!
  • Write another novel. My first one is still unpublished,and that has prevented me from being serious about another one. But, I am beginning to see the merit in starting my second even as I go through the process of finalizing and publishing my first.
  • Stick to the Weekly Diet Guidelines and share my weekly success or failure on this blog. This is a dilemma for me as i am not very particular about logging all my meals. Which is why I am entertaining the thought in the first place. A lot to think about with this challenge as well!

So, what have you planned for the year ahead. Any resolutions? Goals? Share your plans in the comments below and do let me know what you think of mine as well!

Challenges- Updates

This week’s post is an update on the challenges/ resolutions I have completed:

  • #Challenge2016: Over at the awesome micro-volunteering site, HelpFromHome, I had enlisted for the challenge of doing volunteering activities for 2016 seconds. That is about 34 minutes. Well, I did it and more. So, time to celebrate!
  • As far as offering T healthy food items goes, moderate success there. We have been hitting our weekly food requirements most often. Our major setback came with trip to India. But seeing how she rocked jet lag, culture shock, adjustment to all the people, sounds,food and weather and the melee of weddings and functions, I know I have to let it slide.
  • My working out also took a hit in India. And the festive season of last month also made a dent. But, overall three times a week has been achieved. (With great difficulty, but totally done!)
  • Food logging went on and off, but with mindful eating- my weight has improved. And the workouts did help! fingers crossed for the rest of the year!
  • Blogging- I missed eight posts- five¬†of which were during my India trip. No surprises there- when you have a messing to arrange and spearhead with your in-laws; blogging has to take ¬†the backseat! No excuses for the remaining three! ūüė¶

But the year is far from over. Still eight weeks to go and keep up the good streak up!

GO Cubs GO! (Sorry! Can’t resist the infectious enthusiasm of Cubs Fans!)