Tuesday, January 31, 2012

In the hot seat

Hello hello! Hello ji sanam hum aa gaye... :)

We are now back after a really nice vacation in Perth. Thankfully, Xena was quite well-behaved and we did not have to join the ranks of hapless parents who get dirty looks from the rest of the passengers throughout the flight.

I will be taking a few days to blog about the holiday in detail on my travel blog Hopscotch. Do stay tuned, bewdas.

Meanwhile, here's a collage of the various expressions Xena had during her first time in a car seat!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Peeling guilty?

So today is the first day of the Chinese New Year and hence a public holiday. Viv is home and I am so glad because we have a long list of to-do items. Xena's clothes are in the wash and need to be hung to dry, her bottles need to be washed and sterilised, she needs to be fed, lunch needs to be cooked and had, packing for Perth needs to be started, the itinerary needs to be finalised, etc. etc. As I get ready to cook lunch, Viv asks me what he can do to help. I am thrilled because my Mondays are never like this. Usually it's just Xena and me, and frankly speaking, she's not that good at hanging her clothes to dry or washing and sterilising bottles or cooking lunch or packing or finalising itineraries.

It's already 11:30 am so I want to get lunch cooked quickly so we can focus on the rest. I think of how he can help me with lunch.

"Do you like to peel garlic?" I ask.

"No." is his (very prompt) answer.

Fine. That's fine. I had asked him if he liked to peel garlic. Well, he doesn't like to peel garlic. Fair enough.

"Can you peel the garlic?" I rephrase my question.

"Uh." is his (a little less prompt than before) answer.

Hmmm. Okay. Deep breath. I can handle this.

"Hmmm, ok. If you don't want to peel garlic, that's fine. You can just do something else. Why don't you feed Xena? It's time for her puree." I ask.

He jumps at the chance. He is experienced with bottle-feeding and is confident of doing this. And it means he gets to spend time with Xena and that's always fun. More fun than peeling garlic for sure. So I give him the puree, and explain what to do, including the arrangement of the spoons ("You give her one spoon so she thinks she is in control, but you feed her with the other spoon."), and explain about the back-up if she rejects the puree ("Let her gum on a piece of apple and a piece of Baby Bites.") and how to administer the Baby Bites ("Each pack has two, you eat one in front of her and give her the other one.") and the final step ("Of course, you will need to eat what she doesn't finish.")

I enter the kitchen and start peeling the garlic, singing "Aa dekhen zara..."

The following is a list of what I hear while I'm in the kitchen, every two minutes or so.

"Okay baby, try some puree. It's yummy!"

"This is your spoon, ok? Hold it."

"Uhh... she is completely rejecting the puree!!"

"Try it, baby. It's niiiiice!"

"She's not even opening her mouth!"

"Okay, let's put the puree in YOUR spoon and try."

"Oh no! She threw her spoon away!"

"Baby baby, what are you doing? No no no no no!"

"Oh my god what a mess!"

"Now she's pulling the hair on my legs! Oww!"

"Ok ok, try this apple now."

"She threw it! Now what??"

"Okay okay, papa and baby are going to have Baby Bites together!"

"Um... What do I do if she bites a big piece off the Baby Bites??"

"Ok, I am going to dip the Baby Bites in the puree and give her!"

"I dipped it in the puree and it got soggy and broke off!"

"Oh noooo...."

"BABY!!! What are you doing????"

"What is she doing????"

"Why is she doing this???"

"Oh noooo it's ALL OVER THE PLACE!"

"She can't climb out of the bumbo seat by herself yet, right? I need to go get a washcloth!"

Soon enough, I hear cries of help. Not so much from Xena as from her papa. I come out of the kitchen and assess the situation. She has obviously given him a tough time -- she has not eaten anything at all, has puree all over herself, has thrown away whatever she could get her hands on, and finally and most importantly, thrown up on him. He looks helpless and distressed.

"So... how was your first experience feeding her puree?" I ask.


Moral of the story: when your wife asks you to peel garlic... you'd better man up and peel garlic.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Catch-up #1

So here I am, playing catch-up with the bar again.

I suddenly realised three very strange things: (1) I did not write an 'Annual report' post for 2011, like I have been doing in the last few years; (2) I did not make any resolutions for 2012; and the most horrifying one (3) I wrote only 64 posts last year, wayyyyy wayyyyy below what I did in earlier years. Sheesh. Well, all of these can somewhat be attributed to all the happenings last year. The first half of my year was spent running to and fro between home and hospital, and the other half was, um, spent running to and fro between home and hospital. Oh well. I would say that it was an interesting year in general, strengthening and humbling at the same time.

2012 feels strangely different. Maybe I find it strange that I am home all the time. Or maybe the fact that I am home all the time and not minding it so much is stranger. From leading a team of 35, to reporting 24-7 to a baby is a huge change. There is definitely a sense of loss of power from being a career woman to a stay-at-home mom, but there's a different kind of empowerment. I remember my sister saying that she never once regretted quitting her job when Aishu was born, and now I know what she meant.

It feels strange to be sitting in this room, on this computer and typing this. Usually I'm on the iPad because then I can be right next to Xena. But today, I wanted to take some time off and spend it at the bar, letting my thoughts out on the iMac (yes, we're an Apple family) which actually allows me to type long sentences and paragraphs. (I can hear Viv and Xena 'conversing' in the next room -- it's hilarious.) But I figured I need to make some time for the bar every now and then, even if it's just a random catch-up post like this. Not because I want to up the number of posts, but because I really really like to blog. And as I always tell myself -- if you really really want to do something, you will really really find time for it.

In other news, two very important men in my life have majorly let me down. Relax, Dad and Viv, it's not you guys. It's my beloved Shah Rukh and my beloved Imtiaz Ali. I watched Ra.One and Rockstar on Mio TV. (That's one great thing about Mio TV. New movies come on it so fast I don't even miss going to the theatre.) And may I just say Oh.Em.Gee. Seriously, SRK, what were you thinking? I don't think I have watched a movie as bad as Ra.One in ages. And though Rockstar was a huge hit and critically acclaimed and all that blah blah, I found it terrible. I just didn't get it. In the immortal words of the Black Eyed Peas -- where is the love? When I watch a love story, I need to feel the love. I need to want the lovers to get together. In Rockstar, I couldn't be bothered. Just like Love Aaj Kal, I felt nothing for the protagonists. Maybe it was because the leading lady in both movies were so bad. I have always found Deepika Padukone the worst actress today (Sonam Kapoor is a close second), but when I saw Nargis Fakhri aka Donald Duck in Rockstar, I couldn't believe I could find an actress worse than Deepika. And with that, Raju Hirani topples Imtiaz Ali to take the top spot in my favourite directors' list. Maybe Imtiaz Ali thought he would make real actresses out of Deepika and Nargis the way he did with Kareena (you know he did), but dude, catalyst kitna bhi solid kyun na ho, reACTants barobar na ho toh ghanta reaction hoga?

All right, enough about Bollywood. Because once I start, I can't stop. Oh, just one more thing. I'm totally not looking forward to catching Don2 on TV. On second thoughts, I may just watch it to get some material for an SSSK post. And oh, I am totally obsessed with the songs from the movie Love Break-ups Zindagi. And oh oh oh, I was totally surprised to find out recently that John Abraham has an MBA! (I told you once I start, I can't stop.)

Ok ok, digress digress. Viv and I are planning a trip to Perth this month. Though Melbourne and Sydney were higher up in our holiday list, we want to take a short flight first and see how Xena does before we venture further. Our 5th anniversary is coming up, and we thought we should take a family holiday driving around Perth. (We have already delegated tasks. Xena will drink and Viv will drive. I will supervise.) This is going to be Xena's first overseas trip, and I am super kicked and super nervous. Bewdas who live in Perth or have been there, your suggestions on what we should see/do are most welcome!

Chinese New Year is coming up, and it will be a long weekend! We're planning to have a pot-luck lunch at our place with friends, followed by dumb charades using names of B (and possibly C, D and E) grade Hindi movies. Sample these -- Haseena Haathi Wali and Mita De Bindiya Utha Le Bandook. (I swear I am not making these up. These are actual movie names.)

So that's what I have been upto. Bewdas, how have you been? :)

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Two of a kind

Fans of Archie comics would remember that Jughead has an 'identical cousin'. When I first read that story, my reaction was "What? Identical cousins?? That's pushing it a bit too much."

Until recently, when Viv and I noticed that Xena has started displaying more and more characteristics of baby Aish, my sister's daughter.

I found a photo of Aish when she was as old as Xena is now, and put them together to compare. The whole family is going a little berserk at the striking similarities.

Sunday, January 08, 2012

Music to my ears

I noticed Xena trying to play a very strange set of musical instruments, but she was having a little difficulty managing them. With a little help from mommy, she put together an interesting melody. Check it out.