So here I was this morning all re-framed and brimming with positivity about whole fridge situation. The repair guy swung by right on time, around noon. He inspected the delinquent and announced that it was just a jujubi issue that he could quite readily fix for a small cost. And fix it, he did, within 10 minutes.

This is indeed the best possible outcome, given the situation.

Why am I mildly disappointed then? 😉

P.S. Good that we ordered breakfast from IHOP before the dude showed up, so at least got a tiny peek into long-forgotten vacation decadence.

The 47th Lesson

I have sprouted lessons here before when the numbers were a tad smaller (check out “39” and “The 41st Lesson” from the Archives). 47 sounds like a big number, especially considering that my MIL was only a year older when N and I got married. Serious yikes, but we have to plod on.

So. You ready for the lesson?

“Re-frame it”.

What does that mean, you ask?

Well. Our fridge suddenly stopped working last night. There was a brief power surge but is that enough for an entire giant appliance to just die on you? Was mildly alarming to come face-to-face with melted ice cream in the tubs, suspicious smelling milk, and frozen veggies hanging limp and wet in their bags (ugh!).

We are not sure yet if it is salvageable. We have been in this house for almost 16 years now. This is our second fridge. Are refrigerators this fragile? Or are we some kind of demon people who prematurely kill their appliances? Either way. The guy is coming tomorrow afternoon to take a look and to pronounce our fate.

We cleaned out most of the fridge (good bye soggy frozen kale, nobody wanted you in the first place!), huddled the rest close to keep cool together as best as they can (who are we kidding, they are likely getting tossed tomorrow morning), and ate a light dinner with what remained (hello thayir sadam and pickle for some, and maggi noodles for others).

While going through this sorry mess, it occurred to me that we can maybe have coffee or tea and some fruit and toast for breakfast, but beyond that, we would really be reaching to find anything still edible.

Wait a minute.

We’ve been in this situation before. No fridge, only basic coffee or tea was available, and you had to go out to get food. Hmmmm… when have we done this before? On numerous fabulous vacations, buddy! That’s when!

So. Let that guy come tomorrow. And fix my fridge. Or not. N has started looking into new refrigerator options. Maybe we’ll have to go buy one tomorrow. If we do, maybe it will take a week or two to get installed. Well, if that happens, we will have to eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner out. From all our favorite restaurants. Just like we would have done on vacation, but never in a million years would have dreamt of doing for weeks sitting in our own home in scenic NJ.

That’s the 47th lesson, baby! There is always a silver lining. You just have to keep your eyes open for it. 😊


I have been super quiet here (I hope you noticed). I have missed you. I have been thinking about writing again about something totally different. But didn’t want to start writing other random stuff on this blog.

Momto2cuddlebugs is something very special to me. Almost sacred. Starting to write in January 2012 helped me clear the fog in my head – the fog that I was wallowing in for months after Appa passed away.

Appa would have celebrated his 82nd birthday today. It seems like an auspicious day to start on my new writing journey. My friend, L, who has been one of the inspirations in my blogging journey wrote to me today after months to let me know about her new blog. That seems like an omen as well.

So. If it’s truly a Momto2cuddlebugs post, I will certainly come back to write it here. Maybe next week, or next year (or sometime in the next decade, at the rate that I have been going). For now, I think I am ready for a change. This is a big step for me. I don’t really like to change things, especially when I like them the way they are. But change we all must. So I started a new blog. And wrote my first post. At

As I wade through the process of starting up a new blog, I realize that the new formats are challenging and a tad confusing, to say the least. I feel impatient and ready to get on with the exciting parts, but no pains no gains, right? Sigh!

Tikkis and Kibble. What’s that about, you ask? Come there and find out, ok? And be gentle. As I told you, the site in under construction. 🙂

Six Word Spins During Covid-19

Cooking and eating all the time

WFH uniforms: old kurtis and leggings

Thank God – no work video calls

Conference calls trigger W’s wild barks

Lots of work but slow progress

Grocery delivery equals winning the lottery

Bloody pollen allergies won’t let up

No break even during effing pandemic

Don’t want to write any checks

(Just being lazy, don’t you worry)

Celebrated two quarantine birthdays so far

One turned 47, the other 2

Takeout for dinner feels super naughty

Social distancing means no eye contact?

Some walkers seem to think so!

Rediscovering long-forgotten fun board games

And special times with our teens

Debating every issue under the sun

Games more fun when you win

Dad and daughters baked opera cake

Which took hours (and more hours)

(Moi took a well-earned nap)

Online schools are quite the hoot

One chattering away, another half-awake

Girls roughhousing alarmed our gentle dog

(Who’s actually not gentle at all)

Taking candid photos by the dozen

Quarantine as special as beach vacation 🙂

I’m Back, Baby!

Hello stranger! Cannot believe that this is my first post for 2020. On some level, I really thought that I was done writing here. Well. Here I am again. Don’t go thinking that I am here to rant about life during Covid-19 (although it is some crazy, seriously unbelievable sh*t that is going on right now).

We’ll talk about all that another time, ok?

I am here to share a teeny, tiny slice of my life. We were watching Gully Boy this evening with the girls (and W). Felt quite energized by all the creative rapping in the movie. And (you knew there was an “and”, didn’t you?) remembered my own days of writing funny little ditties about my friends in college.

So. Right after the movie, tore a couple of sheets of paper from little N’s (former) math notebook and started to write. About my favorite little guy. Rhyming and everything.

You ready?


Our pup is little Winston

He likes to walk around Princeton

He is accident prone

Oh his tummy got so torn

He is a leash biter

He is a mean fighter

Yes, his bark could be quieter

But his paws couldn’t be whiter

He showers us with love

And thinks Jimmy is a cow

He adores Snowy and Sunny

And eats like such a panni

He loves to snuggle and cuddle

And drinks from many a puddle

Next week he turns two

But he doesn’t have a clue

He can trot for many a mile

May he live a long, long while 🙂


My Word for 2020

It’s that time of the year again! I have been mulling over my word for 2020 off and on over the past month. “Sparkle” and “Blossom” came to mind. Lovely words both. And would have been very appropriate for self, say 25 years ago. Upon further consideration, realized that these words are not really my words. These words reflect my aspirations for my little N when she heads off to college next year. Well. Who asked you to come up with a for a word for her, you ask? I agree.

Looking at myself (and myself only), I figured that what I can use right now is a calm, serene, and steady state of mind. Without (ok, with limited) agitation over things that are not under my control.

So. Here it is. My word for 2020.


What’s yours?


Happiness is…

  • curling up under a blanket on our recliner with little A and watching the Harry Potter movies (for the umpteenth time)
  • early Sunday morning grocery run with N (so early sometimes that they don’t have the veggies back on the shelves yet, grrr…)
  • the sound of little N (and her lovely car) arriving home (her driving solo is doing quite a number on me, I say)
  • making a huge bucket of idli mavu
  • half a dozen books borrowed from our lovely library and a luxuriously free Sunday afternoonBooks


It is fun to have fun, but you have to know how.” ~ Dr. Seuss

A couple of weeks back, as I was taking yet another picture of my very photogenic Thing 3, creativity struck. This is very unusual for me. I usually start the day with a super long to-do list and derive great satisfaction from getting (most of those) things done.  But that Friday morning, somehow, I decided to do something fun instead.

As I was walking W, found myself thinking about the fun custom design store that we walked past a few weeks ago. And how they had some very cute-looking, personalized totes (boy, am I a sucker for totes!).  Finished walking W as quickly as I could, looked up the design store online, pulled together some lovely puppy quotes (and lovelier pictures of my W), and spent a couple of hours designing and ordering this tote.

Cute, no? And environmentally friendly to boot!

Talk about win-win!! 🙂


Aye jaate hue lamhon, zara tehro zara tehro…

I just can’t seem to find the words these days. Plenty of things have been happening (mostly good) but, overall, it’s been pretty intense for me. I have not been in much of a sharing place (even with you).

We celebrated little N’s and my birthdays in August. Most importantly, little N showed up at the Motor Vehicle Commission at 9 am the morning after her birthday, parallel parked in style, and got her license on her first try. I will tell you this, there is nothing quite like standing in your driveway, and watching your excited teen with her newly minted driver’s license driving away from you and turning that street corner alone in your car. No, I didn’t run behind the car (although I did consider it). Reminded me of little N’s first day in Kindergarten when I followed the yellow school bus all the way to school just to watch little N get off the bus safely. Well. This time I just sent a silent prayer up to the Gods, and busied myself with loading and unloading the dishwasher until I heard little N’s steps in the garage.

Little N is a senior in high school this year. And college application season is upon us. Makes for some very busy times (for little N) and lots of rumination on my part. I mean, I was reading in bed the other night when little N came in to brush her teeth in our master bathroom. Watching her, I found myself thinking “Man, it seems like just the other day that I was teaching this child how to hold her toothbrush. How did time go by so fast?”. It’s tough, when this is the kind of thinking that goes on in your head.

Little A is in 8th grade this year. While that blows my mind as well – that little A will be in high school next year – I think, right now, having a high school senior takes up so much of my (tiny) mental bandwidth. Little A is up at 5:30 am with me on most days. Finishing up homework and starting on her breakfast as I bustle around our kitchen making tea and packing lunches. I find little A’s middle school tales both comforting and delightful – stories of simpler times that I now know to pay attention to and enjoy.

In the interest of making things easier (for myself, who else?), decided to ask if cook, R, can possibly come over to help me out twice a week (instead of once, as she’s been doing). Somehow the planets were aligned when I asked her, and she responded with a resounding “yes”. Absolutely love this delegating! With our (well, N’s) work life getting super busier by the day, it is a blessing to be able to access such good quality help on a regular basis.

I am totally in love with my W. He is such a gentle presence by my side on days (well, let’s be honest – on some days) that I work from home. I love my morning walks with him after N and the girls head out to start their days. He meanders around our neighborhood looking gorgeous (if I say so myself), sniffing at fire hydrants (“community bulletin boards for dogs”, I read somewhere), chasing joggers and bikers, doing a merry dance with other neighborhood pooches out on walks, and looking back every few steps in a most endearing way to check if I am still there on the other end of the leash.

Navarathri Golu season is almost upon us. It is on my to do list for this week to watch a few youtube videos and really ace that saree-tying thing. Have become far too old at this point for it to be cute that I am still not comfortable tying a saree.

Che, as I write this post, I notice myself looking at the word count at the bottom of the page. And thinking random things like “Ooh, 669 words. More than enough for a college essay.”


In the name of sanity, Got. To. Detach. 🙂