January 9, 2018

Resolutions 2018

Last year, I had decided to develop/change three aspects of my life - anger management, fitness and involvement. I thought, I should start from the follow up for three of them before putting up resolutions for this new year.

Anger Management/Patience: While I had plugged both the virtues together, I would say I grabbed many many situations to display my patience this year and missed a few in terms of anger management. I surely need to control my temper which hurts me more than any one else but I have realized, it should build in me organically. Consciously trying for it is affecting me negatively in a longer run.

Sometimes, people can not accept you with your flaws. It is human, hence ignoring that part would be a good deal. My voice is considerably high when I explain things, which is a part of my personality. I have been reminded of the same every day since I have shifted to this city. I tried many a times but this is something which is in my genes - high pitched voice! Unfortunately, people are still struggling to know me/accept me. I tried keeping mum, suppressing my opinions/explanations to avoid misconceptions regarding my attitude, but in vein. While I am trying to change myself, it hurts me a bit too much when people lecture me on how I am aggressive in the room full of saints. Needless to say, the intimidating personalities like mine are clueless when people ask them to change the core nature, just because they don't like it. I have not reached a point of self agreement on this.

Fitness: This followed a sine wave this year. While I started with a good note, around August I was detected with a sink in hemoglobin, Vitamin D and B12 levels. While I'm back on both grounds- with the help of diet and some medicines - I wish I could do away with fatigue I catch in case of exertion. The neck spinal issue which surfaced this year (aging!), is not resolved but now I know that postures are more important than I used to think of. With many lessons learnt, at the end I am satisfied with my performance on this resolution. I wish I would lose some weight as well in the new year, in a fit way though.

Involvement: This has backfired. I have made two huge mistakes in my job thanks to this 100% involvement formula. I kid you not, my brain works better if I am doing minimum two things together. No, it does not include music unfortunately- even if it is one of my favorite songs it has to be paused while I am working. But to be frank, this reality has stuck now and I am already working on it. The new year would hopefully being back to the grind in a more efficient way.


Now, its time to declare my resolutions for the year 2018. Unlike last year, this year I am going to make concrete goals. Just like a check list! (I can see my husband rolling his eyes - one more list!)

Health Goals:
  1. I would walk for 30-40 minutes five days a week, or a good old run would do too
  2. I would use staircase to climb up once a day, up to fifth floor at least
  3. I would maintain my water intake at any cost
  4. I would start to cook the way I want to. Sauteed Vegetables, Slow cook Pasta, Roasted Vegetables, Garlic Spinach Bhaji, Caramelized Pear, Garlic Tomato Soup, Leek Soup etc. 
  5. More fruits please. Last three months of increased fruit intake has suppressed bouts of flu. Hence, it clearly works for me and needless to say, I love fruits. It is easy peasy! 
Personal Project Goals:
  1. Driving (I see Red, People!)
  2. One Trip to any place in India (A family wedding can be an excuse)
  3. One Biiiiig vacations outside India
  4. Do more Gardening. I have realized, that is something which puts joy in our little bedroom. 
  5. Decor. This area has got my focus more than ever. Some day re-writing rules to design furniture would enter in my main agenda. Some day.

I am sure these goals are not that difficult to achieve but my current schedule would not let all of these things fit in easily. Lets see. Wish me luck!

Did you guys make any resolution this year?

December 28, 2017

The year it was, 2017!

Now I need to blog about two versions for this year. It is a bit of injustice to put stark contrasts in one single post but the lazy hyper me (another contrast) wishes to put it on a single post.

It is difficult to describe month by month like I always do this year, because I am in a fuzzy state of mind- the last quarter of the year was just too fast to digest things while the first three quarters were more like a combination of struggle and stagnancy (Contrast, I tell you!) while growing as a person and also as a couple.

Vacations. Well, I have to mention a friend's wedding at Delhi which I really really enjoyed. Now, every one knows my love for winters. Beside one vomit episode thanks to food I had stuffed myself with and a bit of frustration caused by poor management in the office- I was smitten by Delhi weddings! Another vacation happened in Kerala and honestly, we did nothing. While that was the most relaxing part, it could not serve the purpose of exploring a new place ,but relaxed atmosphere was something which really helped me to understand myself better. A trip to our Kuldevi's temple before a month was fun, clubbed with shopping hopping at home in Ahmedabad. I wish for one BIIIG and one small vacation next year some how.

On my personal projects, my garden is now a budding every day thing. I lost a couple of plants in October heat, only to revive them this month. Beside that episode, it was a real prosperous year. With the numbers of wine bottles in my window garden shows really a high point of plants. Khi Khi.
While I missed creating even a small card for Mr.ISB's birthday thanks to wedding preparations at home, I managed to whip up two Ganpati Frames this year, along with one rangoli and two cards for other family members. While I am on top of one of my dream (or the start of dream) project, if I finish it beautifully it would get a mention on the blog for sure.

A real low point came some where in the middle of the year when twenty two people died on a staircase of the Railway Station in Mumbai, just because of discipline issues. This is the staircase I use daily to reach office and I missed the accident by half and hour. Anxiety of falling sick a few days ago, with very high temperature while making an effort to even dial some one to help me could not subside as well. For almost more than a month, these memories kept on appearing in front of me. Darker times were created by my own mind. Juggling fears, office work and home did not help me much but some how time heals everything. The saying is no more a cliche for me. I won't say that fears won't come back, but I am aware that that shall pass too.

Fitness. While nothing can be more important than this. I did not put on for sure this year, apart from one or two times I crossed self imposed limits- just to fall back in place. While I still struggle to maintain my fruits and vegetable intake, water in take is something I need to work upon. I have also started clubbing walking and staircase climbing etc in my daily life. I think, I am in love with the french way of staying fit.

Career. One big and One small incident happened where I messed up the situation but I learnt from it. We are at a stage where we are facing sever ramping up issues. Needless to say, managing 30 people across India apart from my regular team was more than challenging, it is challenging even now but some where in between frustration I have begin to grow as a boss!! Khi Khi.

Majority of the chunk of this year was spent in setting up, planning and preparing for my SIL's wedding. The last part is now at the most intense stage. Shopping for clothes, ornaments, gifts, luggage and what not is being done and well, I would conclude this post by quoting my inner feelings for my parents, now when I am experiencing the intensity of managing a wedding as a daughter in law.

How the hell did you guys manage three days of wedding, accommodation for guests, meals, bridal shopping (the only thing where I contributed) and also a journey to Mumbai for the reception- on your own? The only person whose help was taken was my Brother.

How did you do it, Mom Dad???

December 7, 2017

Inside Out

That day I was tired. Understatement. I wanted to just collapse in the office but the saner me said, my juniors would follow me then. So, I reached home and directly banged into our room to change to my super comfortable night dress which consists husband's over sized Tee and Pajama (Pajama is mine, of course!)

By mistake, I switched on the night lamp. My fatigued self asked me to ditch the efforts to go back to the correct switch and straight away change. Now in that dim light- what I did was my sheer laziness to check the status of clothes.

I wore the T-shirt inside out.

Lets not get into where all I wondered in this attire but when Mr.ISB pointed it out to me, I cringed and refused to correct my mistake. Instead I just went straight to the bed.

And... Then, Mr.ISB appeared in front of my eyes,

"Look, I am giving you a company.  I am wearing the T- shirt inside out too!"

I smiled and snored away to glory with this amazing feeling.

*In side out in love*

Khi Khi!

December 4, 2017

Oh, Holidays

So a couple of months back, both of us with my in-laws and Sister-in-law designed this multi-directional trip to several places together. As we have a wedding in the family, we had to do a short pilgrimage and a small post-wedding (our wedding) ritual in a couple of small towns in Gujarat apart from visitng Mr.ISB' maternal family in MIL's home town. Now, I am not a very temple loving person and I was also stretching at office - hence was not really enthusiastic about this trip. (There was a silver lining called Ahmedabad at the end which kept me motivated!)

But, let me tell you- as soon as we boarded the train to this small town called Bhavnagar from Mumbai - I was as excited like a kid,eager to enjoy train travelling. I am not sure how many years ago I traveled such long distances with the family, taking over the entire compartment and eating home made food, just to do time pass. My usual Ahmedabad-Mumbai train journeys are nothing but a bedding to sleep over night. Ah!

Anyway, visiting my MIL's home and tales she has been telling so far , was nothing but enjoyment. Not to forget, apart from a few calls from office I was completely off work. 

We then moved from Bhavnagar to our Kuldevi temple which is actually a Shiva temple in the interior area called Thapa Dungar. I am agnostic to religions but if there is any temple which I found to be not interfering with any one's financial status, clothes, rituals or even nature- it has to be this. A small family managed oldish stone temple with no noise but chirping of birds, managed to give a lot of peace. Something I never get from visiting temples unlike most of the people in my family. Oh, and this decor lover loved the french style bougainvillea on the gate of the temple.

Who wants flower decoration made by man when the nature decorates the temple with creepers!

No marbles, No Gold plated pillars or gates- temples can be simple too!

Shiva Linga which the priest gladly let us click. The white Potali has our wedding card in it and well, no luxuriously made statues here!
After soaking ourselves in the peaceful atmosphere, we moved to a town called Palitana where we stayed over night and visited two Jain temples situated at the foot of the main hill. Again, these temples were made from stone and had a lot of history attached to it. Their age old aura sadly was too crowded to feel and too ritualistic to dwell into but as a first time visitor I really enjoyed. Not to forget Bhel and curd we hogged on to after we were done with temple visits.

Now, it was the time for me to reunite with my parents. After a journey of four hours we all reached home in Ahmedabad. A comfortable evening at home and time spent together by both families would be nice to remember forever. 

Needless to say, next day we shopped shopped and shopped. Once my in laws, husband and SIL left, I repeated the shopping part, apart from spending time with my brother and parents in every possible way. Ah, not to forget time spent with Frock buddy N (if I could write another post about it!) and with two swings in our balcony which is my favorite place at home.

Obviously, when it was time to leave, I felt as if I am transitioning to a different world. I think, I am suffering from hangover. 

Anyone for coffee? 


November 6, 2017

Chai Time Chitchat #12

Now, this November there would be a lot of  Halchal in my daily schedule.

Fortunately and Unfortunately timing of my work ramping up with one of the most important projects is clashing with family-wedding preparation phase at home. I do not want to even imagine how I might struggle to keep up both the stuff alive but I have decided to let it flow on its on.

Then there is this severe neck pain resurfacing back and the stagnancy I have hit in my fitness drive. I have to confess, I am failing to work out every morning but I try to be active all day long. So much that at the end of the day my legs cry. Literally.

Also, a trip back home is shaping up with our Chheda Chhedi (Don't ask, this ritual is generally done after the wedding in my husband's family where the Sister In law unties the wedding knot in the temple and then is gifted the same bridal saree/dupatta given by the in laws to the bride. Don't ask why.) ritual in another town. This time, I swear, I am dying to go home to meet my family and frock buddy N. Really I am. I am not a person who craves to this extent to visit home. People change!

With the shopping spree which kicked off a bit late for the Sister In law, who is getting married next year, I have to decide on my own outfits. The task is daunting because, now I am not the bride so my mother can not ask me to say 'yes' to whatever is given by in laws (or any one for that matter) and sadly, my taste is very understated if you compare it with my MIL and SIL's taste. Luckily, my husband has a very very elegant taste in clothes for me. Hence, this time I might be braving the expectations by others.

There is another pressure of looking young. Not that I am worried, but it kind of irks me out when people throw related statements, even when they do not mean to create the pressure. I am of the same age as my SIL, who is petite and like most of the petite people she has a baby look even at thirty. I am far from being petite. I have the average height of an Indian woman (not tall!) and a well built plump figure with high cheek bones. I would not look younger than my age ever. I look like exactly of my age if not old. So when I announce, I want to wear a saree- the next statement is always, how a saree makes me look not-so-young. These statements only rekindles my love for sarees but some where at the back of the mind - I struggle with myself. As much as I love elegance, I believe in aging gracefully. I am not sure how to answer such statements which compel me to try to look young. (I am sure, petite people like my SIL struggle with body shaming too!)

I am not sure if this soon to be thirty body is creating havoc or I am just into a difficult state of mind, where I crave to talk to my own people. Possibly like minded ones. Every day I manage to snatch time to spend from husband's (and mine) schedule but hello, is there any body else? Anybody else I can crib about multifaceted war I am braving? Or it is not a war, but a phase?

Whatever it is.  I am going to sail through.

November 2, 2017

Not So Saree State of Mind

I love dressing up for Indian weddings. Now don't get me wrong, nobody can do it without shopping clothes worth flaunting. My general expectation is that a virtual weaver should come to me, discuss designs with the 'slender' me, get all of them made in two three days and then I am all ready to rock and roll. Obviously, every single data point (How engineerish!) is a pure work of fiction. Because, as much as I love browsing elegant clothes, I dread going to actual shopping and decide on a single outfit.

So now when there is a big wedding coming up in the family , my mommy is over enthusiastic (and nervous) about my future attires. (How hopeful, I bought the simplest costume to wear in my own wedding. I never stopped loving understated elegant clothes but that calls for another post. Basically I hate shopping 98% of times) While fed up of discussions about what to use with my 7 kg Lehenga (In the song 'Ghoomar', Deepika could dance in 30 kg lehenga!?) I got from my in-laws as a gift and in which function I should wear that yet to weave elegant saree I have not bought..

Me: (Typing in full speed) How did I decide so fast on which wedding saree to wear, How did you survive with my such an attitude, Mom?

Mumma: I was not worried about your shopping phobia back then,  I was thankful in you deciding on getting married only

Well I always knew, I could have been taking no stand to get married at all, if Mr.ISB never entered the picture.

Now mommy dearest knows too.


October 23, 2017

Diwali 2017

Generally a month before Diwali is when I start getting adrenaline rush in my system for the festivities. Right from hunting for that gorgeous designs for two Rangolis I make with traditional powder colors. (Isn't it sad to see quick fix ready made-studded Rangolis now?) to searching for ways to add new bright colored fabric to make the house look alive, I plan it all. This Diwali it was different.

I did not realize that Diwali is close, till the conversation with mom who reminded me to apply 'Gheru' in a day. Yes, a day before 'Vag Baras'. It was not only a sad realization, it was also shattering as Diwali is one of my most favorite festivals. I would blame it on the work. After working for twelve hours a day, I think it is humanly impossible to prepare for Diwali. Though after the 'realization' event, I took the case in my hand. Buying snacks and sweets to gift to relatives, preparing Diyas, Taking out Rangoli colors from attics, buying new colors (at 8.30 pm, no less!) and a pair of new clothes for myself- I tried to do it all.

Well, a grave mistake but a happy one. I was dead tired by the day Diwali arrived- does not mean I missed visiting 7-8 relatives in two days (I don't get leaves any way!) I would have preferred a happier and relaxing Diwali but who gets it all. 

Creating two really rough Rangolis (So 'rough' that somebody in the building ruined the same in flat two hours!) and one elaborated Rangoli for the main two days of Diwali, Flaunting my grandmother's dull cream Banarasi with new shiny black brocade blouse in the office, Creating tiny Rangolis in office, feeling really fancy in the understated maroon and purple colored Patola of my mom, wearing heavy silver Jhumkhas and spending busy hours with Mr.ISB. I think I geared up pretty well.

I just wish for a calmer Diwali next year where I don't have to brave my fatigue to fulfill my wishes to enjoy festivities.

How was your Diwali? Ah, Happy Belated Diwali !!

Would you like to see my Rangoli??