I asked the family what they would like to focus on to set the intention for the upcoming school year (yes, I do these sorts of quirky things).

What N, little N, Amma and I came up with.

Little A wants to focus on this guy during the school year.


But I think he gets a ton of attention already, thank you very much! 🙂


My 18 for 2018 Update

I wrote up my “18 for 2018” list back when 2018 was brand new and shiny.  Here’s how I have fared, seven months later. Lots of progress on some (unexpected ones), no progress at all on others (no surprises there), and really hit the mark on a handful.

So. Here goes. My July 2018 update in parantheses.

  1. Try 300 new recipes (He!! no. How about a more manageable 12 per year? Let’s try that first, ok?).
  2. Walk a 1000 miles (Well. Bought the treadmill desk but felt nauseous on it in the beginning, and have made no progress getting back on it. But I may still hit this goal, thanks to a certain furry friend from #6 below).
  3. Use tote bags for groceries (Absolutely rocking this one! Although, since we are now buying more plastic bags and paper towels to accommodate aforementioned furry friend, maybe this one just breaks even?)
  4. Read the Harry Potter series (Have not started yet, but fully intend to. Have been watching the movies off and on, does that count?)
  5. Clear out and de-clutter at least one closet or one room every month (No effing way this is getting done. Especially given family’s current hyper busy schedule due to #6 below.
  6. Puppy for the family – figure it out and make it happen in the first quarter (This one blows my mind. I cannot believe that I put it on the list in the first place, and we also made it happen (although not in the first quarter). Found myself telling little A the other day that I couldn’t believe that her friend S has a puppy, and realized – holy sh*t, wait a minute, we now have a puppy.).
  7. No more than two cups of caffeine per day (Yeah, right! Make that five).
  8. No more than one pack of sugar per coffee (Yeah, right! Make that five. Ok, not five. Make that two).
  9. No vending machine snacks at work (Yes!! But mainly because of a lot of work from home time due to #6).
  10. Make albums of family and vacation pictures (Hmmm… will roll into my 19 for 2019 list).
  11. Learn to french braid the munchkins’ hair (Ammadi! I really have no talent for some things. Would really love to learn to do fun things with the girls’ hair. But how, oh how?).
  12. Listen to at least one podcast every day (This is happening fabulously – idhukku onnum korachal illai, kaasa panama?).
  13. Write at least four blog posts every month (You know the deal with this one).
  14. Try six new restaurants near home (Have not given this much thought. Tried maybe one new restaurant so far. This should be easy and fun. Sure, will do five more in five months).
  15. Use my Nutribullet at least twice a week to make smoothies (Well. Effing Nutribullet didn’t work. So bought a new different brand smoothie blender. Making smoothies erratically off and on. Should remember twice a week, easy no?).
  16. Have friends over at least once every quarter (Thanks to #6, you can kiss this one goodbye for the near future).
  17. Lunch date with N every month (Haven’t gone out to lunch since N’s birthday back in early May. Not too late to get back on the wagon. Should plan for August!)
  18. Go watch “Hamilton” on Broadway (Sure, as soon as I get the small bank loan that I have requested to pay for our tickets).

Looks like not much got done yet, huh? Well. 2018 is still young. We’ll get there! 🙂

Touche 5

By now, it is well known that little A says or does something that results in a “Touche” post every few months or so. Why am I so surprised then, each time it happens?

So. I have this quote on our little blackboard this week.


Little A walks past the board early this morning, and says, “Ok Mommy, what word would that be?”

I was stumped. It was before my first cup of tea, so I wasn’t particularly alert yet. But don’t think caffeine would have helped much with my situation anyway. So, did the only thing that I could come up with. Hemmed and hawed and ended up with a kissy sound.

Little A was v. unimpressed. “That’s not a word, Mommy. And one word won’t do anything. You need at least a whole kind sentence, ok?” insisted my stickler.

Well. If you put it like that. 🙂

Photographic Memory

Surely v. strange when you see a photo of Piazza San Marco on a travel magazine cover and your thoughts are nothing like:

  • Wow, what an awesome photo, we’ve been here
  • Oh, how breathtaking were the views from the top of that Campanile
  • how 8-year old little A, all flushed and happy, chased after the hundreds of pigeons in that square
  • how absolutely glorious and perfect that summer afternoon was
  • how the pistachio and chocolate gelatos melted in our mouths

None. of. that.

Instead, the first (and only) thought that popped into my head was:

Ha! I know EXACTLY where the toilets are. To the right, just out of range of the photo. And grrr…. how super expensive to use they were!

Che, really gotta start embracing the larger life here, I say! 😉

My Favorite Things

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens” ~ The Sound of Music (well, duh!)

On a recent podcast, Gretchen Rubin (actually, her 12-year old daughter, who was a guest on her podcast that day) had a suggestion to have a running list – a journal – of your favorite things. I liked the idea – some thing easy (always important), some thing to look back on and keep track of (oh, how I love to keep track of stuff), some thing that let’s you see how your list of favorite things changes over time – super cool!

So. I started a new page on my blog to keep track of my favorite things. Check it out at

I am finding it so much fun to update this list as things keep popping into my head.

What are some of your favorite things? 🙂

More Social Media


After announcing here in March of 2017 that I was going to do more with Instagram, I did absolutely nothing (but you knew that already, didn’t you?).

But little N made some fantabulous green tea almond croissants last week, and little A painted a stunning silhouette of a girl and a dog today (subtle hint to parents to go puppy shopping soon) that I absolutely had to share.

I was headed over here to have a braggy moment when I suddenly remembered Instagram. After spending 15 minutes trying to find the Instagram app on my phone, and then another 15 minutes trying to figure out how to tag someone (duh, you just type it right there in the caption with the hashtag), gave up and asked the chikis to help me. Surely, this is how the paatis feel when they plunge into Facebook for the first time! Quite tricky (hearted and un-hearted my own pictures several times) and felt super tentative typing in captions – like I was typing in Spanish or Chinese. Hmmm… really got to do better with figuring this thing out.

Anyway, at least pictures are up now. My poor Instagram account had been decaying with pictures of a blender full of fruit and my blackboard wisdom for almost a year (ada che!).

For all the trouble I went through, I am going to post the pictures again here. At least this time, I know what I am doing! 🙂