As you turn 7

Dear Pari,

As you turn 7, here is your most favorite Annual Questionnaire, we did today. Your Birthday planning and execution are in full swing. Mommy and Daddy are awake everyday til 3 am, and doing shopping the whole day. Really crazy !!! :). Well, let’s begin:

1. Favorite TV Show – Powerpuff Girls

2. Favorite Color – Green

3. What do you want to be when you grow up? – Fashion Designer (same as last year)

4. Favorite Song – Manma emotion jaage re (from the movie Dilwale)

5. Favorite Movie– Disney Descendants

6. Favorite Fruit – Apple

7. Favorite Food – Vada

8. Favorite Drink– Lemonade

9.  Favorite Dessert– Ice cream

11. Favorite Lunch– Dal & Rice

12. Favorite Animal– Peacock

13. Favorite Season– Winter

14. Favorite Flower– Lily

15. Favorite Book– I am invited to a party

17. Favorite Teacher– Ms J (Kindergarten)

18. Favorite Word– shopkins

19. Favorite Dress– My birthday dress i am going to wear.

20. Favorite Game– Lego

21. Anything at home you like most- ipAd

22. Favorite Snack @ school– Cheesestick

23. Favorite Shop– Toys r Us

24. Best Friend– , Samriddhi, Nidhi, Riitka

25. Best Vacation ever– Disney

26. Always Carry– any Shopkins

27. Favorite Language– English

28. Favorite Craft– All the Canvas paintings

29. Mommy or Papa – most Favorite? – Papa

30. Mommy@office or Mommy@ home ? – Mommy @ home.

31. Favorite Toy – Shopkins

32. What do you love to draw?  – People

 

My Weight Loss Journey of 2015

April 2015

After a long 6 months of winter, we got out on a nice Sunday evening to view Cherry Blossom in Newark, I was deciding on what to wear. Whatever I am trying to wear, either not fitting me or my belly fat becoming very prominent. I got on the weighing scale, and whooop: 160 lbs. OMG, In 6 months I gained 15 pounds :( . Even 145 lbs for 5’2″ is too much. Still, I was like okay. But now, it’s too much. I need to do something about this. Need to reduce my weight and reduce my current belly waist from 40 inches to 34 inches. i know it’s demanding too much.. But I need to get into my pre-pregnancy figure. 160 lbs to 120 lbs. So, the thing with which I was keeping myself away these days…. now I am all into it. Women and weight loss Tamasha.

Now, the next question is: How? Offcourse with diet and exercise. I heard a lot about Rujuta Diwekar so  I read the book: “Don’t Lose your mind, lose your weight”. I loved the book. It’s really good to read a book which gives a good knowledge on topic, rather than some graphic tips shared in social media, Eat this.. Don’t eat this. A very comprehensive book of the richness of our great Indian Diet. You just need to know what, when and how much to eat.

After reading the book, I implemented the first thing at my home: Eating with all your senses. Now, no more watching TV, iPad, mobile while breakfast, dinner and lunch. And, I am loving it. So, with all the Rujuta’s gyan and other readings “Wheat Belly”, our Ayurveda and other information available, this is what I am planning for my diet following these principles:

1. Low-carb, high protein diet, Less Wheat ( I know Rujuta doesn’t believe in these no carb diet). But I believe I eat a lot of carbohydrates which I need to reduce.

2. Eating with all senses and at regular intervals.

3. Avoid processed foods including Bread, Store made cakes, cookies, Breakfast Cereals, Frozen Naans, any other frozen food, no snacking on Haldiram packets of samosa, kachori.

4. No  Less Sugar, No Less home made fried.

5. Lots of fresh and seasonal fruits and vegetables, More Greens.

Morning Intake: 1 cup of luke warm glass water with lemon, honey and cayenne pepper. Banana or any seasonal fruit. 5 soaked almonds

Breakfast: Poha, Idli, Dosa, Upma, Rava Idli, Roti-Omelette

Snack: yoghurt with fruits.

Lunch: Rice, Dal- Veg, Lemon rice, raita, Kadi with pakodi, Dahi-aloo, Dahi-Lauki,

Evening Snack: Dhokla, Baked Sweet Potato, Roasted peanuts, Roasted chura, Sev Murmura, Chhole- Aloo Chat, Mango Lassi,

Dinner: Green Salad with apple cider vinegar as dressing.

August 2015

Even after all the plans were ready, made Whatsapp schedule with my friends for reducing weight. Nothing concrete was happening in terms of weight loss. My weight was still in the range 155-160 lbs. Then in Aug 1st week, I visited doctor and got my tests done. And Whoop my test results:

  • High Cholesterol
  • High Blood Sugar
  • High Thyroid
  • Low Vitamin D
  • Low Vitamin B12

Felt really sad. We decided to tackle the last two by medications and top 3 required weight loss. Decided to go on a 21 day diet of Khichdi ( Brown Rice + Moong + Roasted sesame seeds, ajwain, coriander leaves and ginger). After 3 days, could not continue :) mostly because of husband’s continuous saying “Don’t starve yourself, eat everything.”

Sept-Oct 2015

In the month of September & October, started walking for an hour a day, as Pari started her school. Was walking for on an average, 4 days a week. My goal was to walk for 8500 steps but usually I was walking for around 10000 steps. After a month I observed fat accumulated on my waist started shrinking. And at the end of October, my weight was 150 lbs. Yaay- yaay- yaay ..In the month of November, was not very regular on walking, Diwali special sweets. Pari felt sick and a week of school holidays… still by the end of November, I was 145 lbs. Days became colder in December and could not go out for walking. Started JM 30 day shred, every evening. Within 5 days, I noticed my tops and blouses started getting loose. I can feel the difference. On 28th December 2015, I am 140 lbs. All this, with no special diet restriction, no high protein-less carb diet, just knowing when to stop my food and eating at regular intervals, mostly home made food.

Here is the summary

  • May 2015: 160 lbs
  • Aug 2015: 155 lbs
  • October 2015: 150 lbs
  • December 2015: 140 lbs.

Plan for next year

  • Eat healthy, no sugar, no processed food, drink more water.
  • To reduce to 130 lbs and reduce from size 8 to size 6.
  • Follow a yoga routine for 30 minutes in morning and JM shred, piyo, T25 in evening.
  • Just remember, walk is not an exercise, but very effective in keeping one healthy.

Refresh 2015 !!!

Now it’s time again to look back 2015, and refresh the memories of joy, and appreciate the accomplishments.

Family : We have been spending lovely time with our little princess and enjoying each & every bit of it. Weekdays morning & Evening routine are so much lovely. Every weekday evening, we have to watch ‘Tarak Mehta ka ulta chashmaa’ and some other Hindi Serials. Every Friday is a Movie Night. And every Thursday is Bollywood Gyaan :).

Home : Does not look okay. Not at all especially after watching all HGTV shows. Did lots of changes in my home. Got new sofa, new cushion covers, curtains, paintings, Wall Art. Still Loads to do. Incorporating Konmari techniques.

Travel : This year, we did not travel outside of New Jersey. Summers, we spent in Water Parks and beaches. We went to New York for Fall. Oh, that was a super special trip. A separate post soon.

Finances : Creating Monthly Budget, Tracking and Following the plan. Need to do the Financial Plan for future. Shopping a Lot. Need to control.

Eating out– That’s a good job we do. Not much eating out.

Hobbies :

  • Home Decor – Ongoing. Changed Sofa, cushion covers and curtains. Still thinking of color scheme for living room.
  •  Photography – I love my camera but haven’t done any manual photography.
  •  More Blogging.- It’s not like I don’t have content. I believe I have so much of content that I can write 3 blog posts in a day. But, my laziness drives me crazy. My mind keeps on drafting my blog, but my hands don’t support them :( .
  •  Pooja Thali-  Did not finish yet :(
  •  Baking: I realized I am not good at baking from scratch. It’s better to bake cakes from Duncan Hines. 2015- No bake at all. Using Oven only for roasting sweet potatoes, asparagus, chicken nuggets and french fries.

Health : My Health has not been ok this year. Diagnosed of thyroid, Low Vitamin D, low Vitamin B12, High Cholesterol, High Blood Sugar Level. Having some medications and lost weight around 10 lbs.

Books : I read these books:

  • Don’t lose your mind lose your weight – by Rujuta Diwekar
  • The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up- by Marie Kondo  – (Got this book after 3 months of wait time in Library)
  • Love the Home You Have- by Melissa Michaels
  • The Power of Your Sub-conscious mind ( I got this from Library but could not read it and had to return it)
  • Half Girlfriend – by Chetan Bhagat (still not complete)

Pari : Pari completed her Kindergarten successfully. Her studies are so far so good.. Now, she is in 1st Grade, and she is exploring the world of reading. I want to write about her school experiences soon. She is doing good in school. Her art was selected for the 1st prize by NJ Agricultural Society.

Mood : The mood throughout this year has been full of ups and downs…I feel my Inter-personal relationship has been going on very bad. Few of my friends started keeping distance from me and I don’t know I did not even made an effort to revive the relationship. It has never happened to me but it was like it used to become a mess  when I am with that friend.

Diet and Fitness: On good track, need to continue this to the next year.

Now, here is the report card for 2015. ( Goal Vs Achievements)

Pari

  • Get her to eat Fruits, Vegetables & Curd.– She is still eating Apple, Banana & spinach, lauki, bhindi (forcefully), her favorite Paneer. 
  •  Pari’s social life – This year, very few play dates.
  •  My Dream came true- seeing her dancing on stage and that too, twice this year..

Personal Health & Beauty

  • Look Good to Feel Good-  2015 was good. Need to work more on eye makeup.
  •  Whenever leaving home, apply kajal & a lip gloss, perfume spray- Done :)
  •  Walk a lot …  October & November had been superb on my walking. Reduced weight. Tracking my steps on mobile. 
  •  Do one thing at a time, and keep kitchen clean while working- On the right track :)
  •  Get up early. I have alarm at 6:45 am. Try to get up at 6:30 am- hmm :(
  •  Make more friends and nurture the ones I have – Still to improve
  •  Drink at least 8 glasses of water – :(
  •  Stay Mindful-everyday – yes-yes offcourse. I have so many things.
  •  Be more money/Investment Savvy- MF, Life Insurance, Financial Planning, Budget Savvy- :)

 

DIY Canvas Art- Wall Art

Pari & Dad made another beautiful Wall Art. This time, they used Q-tips. Pari loved to paint the entire canvas with beautiful yellow color. Dad introduced the darker shade, and Pari blended them very well. Dad then drew the outline of the tree and colored brown. Pari took Q-tips dipped  in various colors and made the below pattern. It was super fun & they both enjoyed a lot.

And this is the completed look in our bedroom. It looks so adorable.

:)

DIY Wall Art

DIY Sunburst Mirror

DIY Sunburst Mirror-8

Over the summer, we made this super easy & beautiful Sunburst Mirror for around 8$ or less. To make this, we need

  • Mirror
  • Wooden BBQ Sticks
  • Some Paint and Hot Glue Gun
  • Rhinestone Stickers

For this project, I bought this mirror, which costed 1.49$ and Rhinestone Stickers of various sizes from AC Moore for 5$ or something. Other things I already had. I picked lime green color as I want my living room to have green & gold theme.

I didn’t had this exact color paint, so we mixed paints to make this lime green color and painted the Barbecue sticks.

After the paints were dried, stick to the back of mirror using hot glue gun. The more sticks, better it looks.

Next, stick the rhinestone stickers on the barbecue sticks and the mirror face. As this was already a mirror with hanging, I did not had to worry about how to hang.

And this is beautifully decorating my living room.

DIY Nail Paint Stand

DIY Nail paint Stand

Over the Summer of 2015, me & Pari made this beautiful Nail Paint Stand to organize her ever increasing collection of nail paints. This was a 2 hour project, costed almost nothing, as we had everything already. For this, we needed:

  • A box – Recently, I received a big, sturdy UPS box in the courier. A perfect size for our project.
  • Glue Gun
  • Duck Tape Contact Paper.
  • Foam Board
  • Cardboard Cutting Tool

Here is the box.

NailPaint Stand-1

To begin with, I removed one face of the box facing me.

NailPaint Stand-2

Covered the face with Duck Tape Contact paper. I had zebra print.

NailPaint Stand-3

Now, to make levels in this box, I measured and cut 2 foam boards, so that it fits in this box. Along with this, I also cut small strips which can be attached in the front.

NailPaint Stand-4

It should look like this. NailPaint Stand-5

Now, cover the foam board cut-outs with the contact paper. Glue it to the box with the help of glue gun. And this is the finished project:

DIY Nail paint Stand

This project was actually inspired from Pinterest. Pari loved making this Nail Paint Stand especially sticking the contact paper, and using the hot glue gun, ya ya she was extremely careful. This nail paint stand is proudly sitting on my dresser :).

 

 

Diwali 2015

This year, on Diwali

Pooja: On Diwali evening, after cleaning up the home, we did Lakshmi -Ganesh Pooja, followed by Pari’s Gharonda pooja. Then, we had sweets and snacks. Friends came over and we burst crackers outside. We visited our neighbor’s house, had to come back early, as another friend came over our to our home. We had dinner: puri-chhola. Pari was so tired by that time, and she slept.

7-Pooja

Diwali Gharonda: Like every year, Pari and Dad made this beautiful Gharonda/Doll House with foam board. Will do a separate post on making of Gharonda. So, this Gharonda has been beautifully decorated by Pari. It has living room and kitchen on the lower level, and two bedrooms on the upper level. All her princess figurines and magic clip Disney Princesses are enjoying their stay at this beautiful home, which was adorned by Christmas Lights. On the day of Diwali, Pari did pooja of this house too.

4-Dollhouse6-Gharonda

Food:

So, this year there was no party. Just few friends dropped in to wish Happy Diwali. These are the foods on the table: Chakli/ Murukku, Chivda, Dahi-Vada, Rabdi, Gulab jamun, Masala Puri Chaat, Dahi Puri Chaat.

Diwali Decorations:

I have never ever been able to make rangoli at my house. This time too, I tried making rangoli with colored rice, but again, a failed attempt. Well, the candles and buddha and a little green do spice up the decor. And, a bowl of water with rose petals and tealight candles work wonders to exhibit the festive spirit.