Thursday, February 24, 2011

Birth dates..

Last week it was my birthday. It was a super fun day for me! My hubby made it all so special for me. I am pretty good with remembering dates and numbers. But after cell phones I am getting weaker in that dept by relying on the phone all the time. Birthdays have become easier with many using facebook now. So, I took off my birth date from FB the week before. ;o). Just wanted to see if I get any wishes. Well, my family, school, college friends remembered and few close ones, whom I know before FB days. Then I was telling that to Yogi that how FB has become a source for everyone, and he went and wrote on my wall to wish me. Of course, all the common friends between us can see this message and then people started writing. :o)

Got me thinking about how many co-incidences I have with birth dates. Coincidences as in the sense knowing the people who share the same birth dates. This post is going to be full of confusion if you don’t read it carefully. :o)

My son’s birthday is on the same date as my co-sister, my college friend, my prev neighbour’s daughter, Ayush’s buddy on the bus, a designer who helped us with our home and my favourite movie star Kajol. That designer, Tammy had an interesting birth dates in her family too. Between her three kids, hubby and her, they had birth dates one after the other ranging from 3 to 7. Three of them in same month of August and other two in June.

As my son shares his birthday with my engineering college friend Rashmi, another friend from same group, Thanu’s daughter Janu shares birthday with me. :o) I do know 2 more who share same birthday. Are you still here with me? LOL

I had met a mom and son at the temple on Feb 29th of the last leap year. They said it was both of their’s birthday! We were amused and she went on to add that even her mother or father (can’t remember) share the same Feb 29th. It is one of the rarest I think.!

When I was expecting Alya, there were 7 of us expecting in the neighbourhood. I was the one with first due date. I hadn’t decided on the name either. Day before I went in for C-section, I met my neighbor who was going in for her c-section the week after. After Alya was born, I checked my email to see that my neighbor had written our kids would be sharing b’day, since she is going in on the same day for emergency c-section. 5 days later, we realized that we even named our kids ALMOST the same. :o) Her daughter’s name is Alma. It’s funny how both have another trait of putting two fingers in the mouth!

Okay I won’t torture more with number games. But one more is interesting to end the post with. My sister and her daughter’s birth date combination is same as my Mother-In-Law and her daughter (my Sister-In-Law). That is 15th May and 5th June respectively. Also my sister shares her birthday with her MIL and a friend of mine.:o).
Look around and see if you can have fun seeing these co-incidences.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011


After my last post I was thinking about how many more surprises have happened with me. It was either me planning to surprise someone or someone else surprising me. All in all, it's so much of adrenaline rush :o).

I liked to surprise people, well even now I do. After my eldest sis Vidya got engaged, I came face to face with major surpriserrr! My Brother-In-Law Shailesh. Even now he keeps doing something or the other every time. There are so many instances that I can’t even count. For the starters, he lives in Pune and back then we didn’t have phone at home. So he would call my sisters at our neighbour’s house. It was Dushera time and we both were supposed to go to my uncle’s factory to help with the decorations for the festival. As we were leaving she got a call from him. After the conversation we left. At the factory, we both were directing workers with decorations, I heard my sister scream. I turned around and I screamed. Coz my then would-be BIL was standing right at the entrance. It seems his brother had some work in B’lore, so he offered to do it and in the bargain get to meet his bride and her family. :o)

There are many occasions when my elder sister shows up in B’lore unannounced to surprise. Then my BIL many times shows up a day early, so always unexpected with them. :o). My mom hates all this surprises though. She says that if we tell her beforehand, she will be sooo looking forward to that day with excitement. If it’s a surprise, it’s momentary she says:o). I see her point actually, especially if you are visiting them. Last time we thought we will keep our travel to India a surprise, since we decided to go at the last minute. But then I remembered what my mom says and changed that thought and told everyone about our travel.

Once I went to India after 3 yrs and I hadn’t seen anyone from my side of the family. But since it was Yogi’s brother’s wedding we were supposed to go to Mumbai directly and then to native for the wedding. So I would be meeting my family only after 2 weeks at the wedding. As we went out of the airport, I saw my parents!!! I was sooooo happy, they had come all the way to receive us. Since I was coming after so long, they couldn’t wait another 2 wks to see me. So they flew in. Then I saw my younger sister Vandu with her 9 month old Pranav in hand! I was on top of the world. It was such an emotional reunion.

After coming here to US, mostly it's become baby shower surprises, which includes, Nisha's, Frany's and Veena's (tried one more with Uma and failed!! coz we gave away too much infomation by insisting on wearing a saree!! ) For Nisha’s baby shower, I called up one afternoon and asked her to come quickly to my apt and kept the ph. She came running and we screamed surprise! She looked at all of us and ran back coz she didn’t wanted us to take pics in her house clothes. It was too funny. For Frany, Vishali invited her for lunch (we couldn’t wait for her hubby coming next wkd, coz it would have given away too much) And she had no clue about what was going on. She walked in and I remember she having the same look that I must have had. :o). For Veena, her hubby Vasanta booked a place and brought her in pretext of someone else’s party. I had taken sarees and jewellary to get her dressed. So it all worked out so well.!!!

There are times when I have surprised Yogi, on his birthdays mostly. After few years he started to expect the surprises, so I have given it a break by not giving any. :o)
It’s fun to do it sometime and do it to people who enjoy getting one. So enjoy and cherish the moments as they come!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Surprise baby shower! :o)

Yesterday we threw a surprise baby shower for one of our friend, Sheetal. Well, I say surprise, but wasn’t surprise at the last minute! We planned this elaborate how to do, what to do, when to do and kept it all hush hush! And then….. yesterday her son was playing with a neighbor’s kid and he came over to her to tell that he’s going to come for their party in the evening. She’s like, what party? We don’t have any party and the kid said, no, you do, it’s your baby shower!!! There!!!

Anyways, it was a fun party anyway. This reminded me so much about my baby shower two years back. With my son, I was in India, so it was completely traditional with my in-laws and parents participating in the ritual. When I was pregnant with 2nd one, and I was closing on to my 7th month, one of my friends, Vishali called and said that she would like for me to come for small party over the Christmas weekend. I was like, LUNCH! Are you sure? Coz she doesn’t like to get going early in the morning. :-)

After I kept the phone, I told Yogi that she’s keeping a surprise shower for me. Yogi is like how do you know? Here was my theory. My other friend Frany, who moved to MN that year would not have missed having a shower for me. And if she would come all the way to here, she would want to meet me early. If the shower is in the evening, then she will have to wait almost a day to get to meet me. So, they are keeping in the afternoon. Yogi thought I was losing it!

The week before the long weekend, another friend Shailee called up and invited for lunch on the same day, since Yogi hadn’t been to her new home yet. I said, actually I have plans to go to Vishali’s place that day and she had told me month back and not sure if the plan is still on. (It was my trick question to see if Shailee was invited coz I would have been surprised if she wasn’t invited. ;o)) Shailee said, if the plan isn’t on, she will invite Vishali too, since she hasn’t been to her house either.

Hours later, Vishali called and said Shailee called her and actually her plan had fallen through, since many of her friends were going out of town that weekend. So she had agreed to come to Shailee’s place for lunch. I felt sad that Frany wasn’t coming since it didn’t work out. So on Christmas morning we set out to Shailee’s house for lunch. On her driveway we saw Vijay’s car and were talking that they were already there.

After waiting for some time, Sundar (Shailee’s hubby) opened the door. As soon as we set our jackets, I asked him if Vishali was already there. He said no. Puzzled, I said I saw their car outside. Sundar seemed confused and said may be they are downstairs. Since he was upstairs, he didn’t know if they were there yet. So we reached the basement which was dimly lit and out of that darkness, one after the other Shailee, Vishali, Minaxi, Veena, Aruna, Nisha, Frany, their kids and hubbies emerged. I kept looking at each one, not knowing what was going on. Even after everyone saying “Surprise!!!”, I was still confused. After a few minutes I was able to digest the fact that it was in fact my baby shower!. LOL, I still remember the feeling, but not able to put it in words now.

So I was right in the first place. But they threw me off when the venue was changed. But all my friends thought that they gave it away with the last minute venue confusion. I told them I would have gotten dressed up if I had come to Vishali's place and surprised everyone over there. ;o). Oh the things we all do to surprise people!. LOL.
Well, It was the most amazing thing my friends did to me. They all cooked something special for me. Got sarees, jewellary, makeup etc for me to get dressed up. (Coz ofcourse, I was in some prego elastic jeans and top!! ) It still feels like a dream, a very sweet dream that touches your heart. I still remember that day and can’t believe how fortunate I am to have such lovely friends. And y’day when I saw my friend Sheetal tearing up, I knew exactly how she was feeling. :o)

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Living by the fire line

Yesterday I met one of my friends after a gap. I had gotten news that her son got enlisted in the marine. She started talking about it and her eyes were welling up. I could see a mother being terrified for her child. Always felt that there has to be lot courage in a man/woman to enlist for the army. But there is whole lot to it. Not only them, it becomes family decision. Because when they are out there at the frontline, family back home is getting killed every day worrying about them.

This subject is very close to my heart. I have always regarded the soldiers than anyone. I think they need to get the highest respect than anyone. First of all I (and most of you all are) am against war. But then it’s become inevitable in today’s world. So every country needs to have armed forces to defend it and also help other developing countries to keep themselves safe.

Well, I wasn’t gonna start talking about the peace between the countries. Coming back to topic of soldiers, I have to salute to all the parents, spouses, kids, siblings, friends who let go of their beloved ones, so that …. We can be safe and have a better life. I am at loss of words, now that I am getting more emotional. Just hoping and praying for all of you out there!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Cancun trip - Part II

Yeah, we did JUST vacation this time. What I mean by “Just Vacation” is that usually whenever we take a vacation to any place we don’t relax. We always plan ahead on what we want to see and do. And this time, all we had in mind was do NOTHING. Oh, we did want Ayush to try swimming with Dolphins. Since the dolphins were at the resort itself, we thought if he keeps seeing them he would want to give it a try. And try and go see Mayan ruins on one of the days.

The relaxation part was so huge that we came back grinning side to side. First day when we went to beach, anyone could have make out that it was our first day (Coz we were able to make out from next day onwards on others ;-)) We were all just sooo in awe of the beauty there, that it was hard not to show all that excitement on you!!

They had Explorer’s club at the resort where we could drop 3 and above age kids. With only one kid to drop off, we didn’t leave him. But the few times he decided to join, he had loads of fun. They would close the bar and discotheque at Desires bar for the kids to come and enjoy the music and dance. They would go on scavenger hunt, bungee trampoline, painting, rock climbing, art and crafts, you literally name and they had it.

For adults too they had many activities throughout the day. There were beach volleyball, water sports, kayaking, trampoline and rock climbing right in the middle of the ocean, riding on the mechanical bull. All fun activities! We would literally be either at the beach side or in the kid’s pool all the time. Made lots of friends because we would bump into same people every day. And Ayush made many friends at the club and also coz of us. He got attracted to this really cute girl I think. Her name was Sophie. She looked like a doll with all the curly black hair. Actually, when talking to her mom, she said Sophie looked just like my baby when she was around that age.  One day saw her at World café having breakfast with her dad and Ayush asked the hostess to make us sit right next table. Throughout he kept smiling at her, but would not go talk (though they played together when at Explorer club). It was just so cute.

Then there were evening programs where they would either have some kind of acrobatics/ magic/ music/ pirate theme or shops from local vendors. The clown at one the show asked Yogi to come up on stage. It was a pretty funny act and he was happy to be part of it. All the acrobatics that we saw were just jaw dropping. Pretty neat.

The weather cooled down for 3 days in Cancun. One of those days we decided to go to Tulum, which has Mayan ruins and many had recommended this place, since it’s closer to Cancun and had beautiful setting. En route the guide kept talking about the Mayan culture etc. Pretty interesting, though I would have liked a nap! Once reaching there too, the tour was pretty long. Then when we were left with one hour, they said we could explore by ourselves. The ruins were right next to the beach, so we went towards the beach. Oh, it was one of the GORGEOUS beaches I have seen. We have to get down at least 3 or 4 stories down to get to beach, had beautiful stone carvings and just plain beautiful and peaceful ( even though it was bustling with people)

Next day we had booked for Ayush to do swimming with dolphins. It was very cold outside still and we were wondering how cold the water will be. Of course it was freezing water, but my boy didn’t let go of the opportunity to swim with dolphins. He enjoyed every bit of it, especially riding on it. I am sure he will cherish every moment of it and his pictures brimming with happiness when those dolphins kissed him, oh my gosh, just priceless!

Even when I look back at our vacation, all I think about are the moments when I just sat there on the beach and did NOTHING! It was just pure serenity, tranquility whatever you want to name it! One day I got early and went to see the sunrise at 5:30. It was just an amzing experience. We came back with so many wonderful memories to last us a life time. Wish to make few more memories like these with my loved ones.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Dreamy Cancun Trip - Part 1

Oh, starting to write about our trip itself is making me nostalgic about the place. It's one of the most beautiful places I have been to. It was a totally different experience.

Well, let me start from the beginning. (ok, my guess, this is going to take 2 or 3 posts. ;o) )As we flew into Cancun airport, we all were eager to peek outside and see the shore. The land was pretty flat and could see the ocean for most of the part. Cancun airport itself is located about 20 minutes from the actual hotel zone. What is hotel zone you ask? Well, it is shaped like number 7 and has all the hotels and restaurants in that area. I do not know if they would allow any residential building over there.

We got picked up by prepaid taxi that we had booked from back home. It was a huge SUV and a very posh interior. Way out, it was very clean roads and nice landscapes throughout. We saw few shopping malls on our way through the hotel zone. Since our hotel, “Dreams Cancun” was located, right at the tip of “7” we got to see all the hotels from down south up. Hotel is located on cul-de-sac.

As we got to the reception, a waiter came over and handed up water bottles and champagne! We were like, oh, here we go!!!! Our package was all inclusive when we booked. That means, you can eat/drink in any restaurants on the property any amount, any time, can do room service, everything included in the price that we paid up front. Yeah, one thing that happened to us during this trip was we forgot how it feels to be hungry. :o) (My guess again, this post is going to be all about food post!) Wherever on the property we were, someone or the other would come over to ask you what you would like to eat or drink!

The hotel property was beautiful. They had 5 restaurants on the property, one bar and discotheque, 3 snack bars. My kid’s favorite was “World Café” that would have theme every day and buffet style. Best place for breakfast. They had more than a dozen varieties of freshly squeezed fruit juices. Pineapple, papaya (yum!!), guava, mango, beetroot (my favorite!), orange, musumbi (another favorite), cactus(Oh, yeah, I tried it. Didn’t really care though ;o)), celery.. We loved trying each and every of them. Kids would go on trying one after the other.

Then there was huge choice of food and beverages. And of course who can forget desserts! They had delicious tarts, mousse, cakes (coffee!!!!). Awesome of the lot was icecreams. Yeah, they had only strawberry, butter scotch, chocolate and coconut flavors. But they were the most delicious ones. Even after a huge meal, we all would still want to have few scoops. ;o).

The first one we tried was “Oceana - Seafood Grill”. It had variety of fishes prepared in different ways. We add some swordfish, salmon, and fish tacos. All were so good that we went back to that place quite a bit. Only problem was they were not open for family dining in the evening, it was couple only. Then there was Himitsu, an Asian flavor. It was right by the beach, so most of the nights it was so windy to go there. At last we get to go there once and they had great sushi, and flavorful entrees.

Ahh, I am feeling hungry. I guess I will stop for now and continue the journey for my next post… :o). I think I will put the title as Part 1, that will encourage me to complete my posts. :o). BFN..