Stroller Envy

Baby transport system

Why, you ask, am I writing a post titled “Stroller Envy”? I’ll just jump right into it.

That is because I’m 5 months pregnant!!! ๐Ÿ™‚ It’s still hard to believe at times.. until I look down and see my wonderful baby bump of course! And then I’m quickly reminded that I’ve got a little munchkin growing inside of me. That and the little kicks I’m starting to feel!

The past 5 months have been a rollercoaster to say the least. From the high of finding out, to keeping it a secret, to getting some tests done, to starting to show and having to hide it, to telling our friends and family, to not fitting into my clothes, to buying new clothes! And now the most fun and probably difficult part of all… getting the nursey, house, and surroundings ready for the baby’s arrival! The hubs and I spent 3-4 hours at Babies R Us within a week of us announcing the news registerting for everything that we think we need. Key word – think. God knows what we’re missing or going overboard on!

During my walk yesterday, I found myself acting a little on the creepy side when I glanced a little too long at the strollers and baby carriers walking past me. What brand is it? Does the baby look comfortable? Do I want a 3 or 4 wheeler? Does it look too heavy? Wonder how it folds up. Wonder how much it costs.

Ah yes. Cost. I am in utter shock that there are $1500 strollers on the market. How long does a newborn to toddler need the stroller? How many stollers will the child go through? Do I need just one for the first year, and then get a new one when the baby starts to sit up? Then I get a super light one for when the kid can walk, but needs to rest at amusement parks, malls, etc.?? Do I get a travel system so I’m covered for both – but now I’m buying a monster of a stroller, and although I love that it matches… do I need something like this??

Then there’s the brands! Peg-Perego. McLaren. JEEP. Bugaboo. Graco. Chicco. I have no idea where to begin. So parents.. I ask you for your advice. HELP ME!


Ok sweetheart.. it’s time we had “the talk”

Many of you non-Indian Americans had the pleasure (or displeasure, depending on how awkward it may have been for you) of having “the talk” with your mother or father, or both (geez).

You know what I’m taking about. The infamous birds and the bees. Now the following is really based on assumption because I never got the talk, but we’ll get to why I never got the talk a little later.

I’m guessing that the parent was pouring beads of sweat and totally nervous about having this discussion. The kid didn’t know what he/she was in for and the awkwardness that was about toย ensue. More often than not, the kid got the whole lesson in that health class in elementary school where the video from 1975 was shown about peepees on boys and the flower on girls. So when your parent(s) started the conversation, you already knew the major details and humored them so they felt like good parents.

Or better yet, you were educated about blue balls. Yes that’s right. There is a video that exists educating teens about blue balls. Even I was shocked (and amused) to find it!

I don’t know a single Indian person, not a single one, who had the lecture about the birds and the bees. If they did, the rest of their lives would not be so awkward. Growing up, if I was watching TV with my parents, and a couple started making out on some random show, everyone got really uncomfortable. The channel would be changed immediately, mid smooch. Don’t even get me started on semi-sex scenes in movies. Total and utter awkwardness. Bollywood movies have just started showing actual kissing in the last couple of years and I must say, it’s totally wrong. Traditionally, during a dance and song number, if the couple leaned in to kiss, the scene would fade into the next or they would turn away from the cameras to make it look like they kissed. She would lean into his shoulder if he went to kiss her. So for them to show total make out scenes in Bollywood movies is just plain wrong. I’ll have to save this for another post because I could go on forever.

Fast forward a couple of years and I now have a boyfriend. No holding hands, and definitely no kissing around the parentals. Big no no. Boys and girls don’t do that. Let alone the fact that having a freakin boyfriend is rarely publicized to the parents. SO MANY of my girlfriends in high school and college hid the fact that they had a boytoy from their parents for most or the entire relationship, unless of course it got serious and absolutely led to marriage. When my sister and [American] brother in law were dating and my parents knew that they were going to get married, my mother actually pulled him aside one day and asked him “are you having the sex?”. I shit you not. My mother never approached my sister of course. Only her boyfriend. Talk about random and totally awkward.

Fast forward another couple of years. 29 years have passed since I was born. Reminder: my folks never talked to me about the birds and the bees. Now I’ve been married 2.5 years. They never asked my husband while we were dating “are you having the sex”. Thank God. However, the subject has still always been avoided.

Until now.

My mom is visiting me and my husband and has been here for almost 3 weeks. Since my dad passed, I’ve been trying to get her to come up to NJ and stay with us for a while, and she finally listened.

Obviously, since we’ve been married for more than 2 years, we’ve started thinking about kids. My mom decides to approach the topic, but not as elegantly as I would have imagined…

“So come on! You need to start having babies. Get to work!”

She’s come to the conclusion that I must have figured out how the birds and the bees work, so we won’t need to sit down and get into the details. But listening to that line was the most hilarious thing I’ve ever heard in my entire life!

Dear Mom – you avoided talking to me about sex my entire life. It was totally awkward watching kissing scenes on TV with you. I couldn’t hold my boyfriend’s hand in front of you (that’s IF you knew he was my boyfriend), and now I need to get to work making babies. Amazing.

Needless to say, my generation has hopefully learned something about our upbringing and will tweak it when it comes to our kids and “the talk”. I can’t wait to be that nervous parent approaching my kid about the topic knowing damn well that he/she knows all about it. Oh well! As long as we talk about it BEFORE he/she starts having kids, I’ll be golden.

When did we become that couple…?

My husband and I have been happily married for 2.5 years… hitting 3 years in October. We don’t have any kids yet, but are totally ready to be parents!

So we thought.

My nephews (ages 10 and 7) have come to stay with us for a week and a half for the first time ever. This is their first time out of the house this long without their parents. And it’s not like their parents, my sister and bro-in-law, are a few towns away, no they’re about a 4 hour flight away – back in Texas.

Thankfully (because I don’t know what I’d do without her), my mom is also here with them. She watches both of them all day, everyday, in the summertime, so she knows their quirks and needs throughout the day. My husband and I take over when we come home from work so she can do her thing, like take a walk, rest/relax, etc…

I absolutely love these boys. I do feel very close to them every time I go home or they come visit. They talk to me properly on the phone every time I call, and they tell me their stories all the time. The 10 year old was born when I was a freshman in college, so I definitely feel connected to him because I was so young, also because he was the first grandchild in our family. My sister and bro-in-law are great parents, that much I can definitely see. The boys listen to them really well.

But man do they tire me out! How is it that my husband and I are in bed before 10pm right now? This is only 3 weeks after we were out in the city until 11:30 pm on a Tuesday night for dinner and drinks with friends. Is this what’s gonna happen when we have kids? I mean I knowww that once the child is born, I can just forget about sleeping. Feedings every 2 hours, taking naps when the kiddo is sleeping, etc. Am I right?

But we jumped from no kids, to 2 very active boys who get bored at the drop of a hat. We don’t really have a ton of “kid stuff” around the house – couple of board games, deck of cards, the Wii… yeah that’s about it. So how do you keep them entertained??

Pretty sure this is NOT allowed... right?

Thankfully my husband is a 10 year old at heart ๐Ÿ™‚ so he plays and talks to them and keeps them entertained. I witnessed them playing War and Goldfish aka Go Fish for an hour tonight.

He also has a lot more patience than me, no surprise there though. But I think they listen to him because he’s a guy. Only my sister has a good hold on the boys. “I’m going to call your mom” actually freaks them out. So I have to work a little harder for them to listen to me. Which tires me out. Which is why I got in bed at 9:55pm today. They’re in bed by 9:30, my mom’s in bed by 9:45, so my husband and I look at each other, walk to our room, and go to bed.

This is what we have become… for now. Although I can’t lie… getting 8 hours of sleep a night has really become wonderful. I didn’t realize how much I missed getting so much sleep! I don’t think I can go back to the late nights, on weeknights OR weekends. I’d rather get in bed at 10 ๐Ÿ™‚

P.S. this is definitely nothing against my boys! I love them to death, always will. Just didn’t realize how hard parenting is! I’m bloody pooped folks. And I know my husband is pooped… he hasn’t snored this heartily in a loooong time. LOL poor baby!

God help me when it’s really our turn… seriously!

Remembering you on Father’s Day

Happy Father’s Day

by Tami Blackwell
Give ’em a hug, a great big kiss.
Because one day, he will be greatly missed.

My daddy has gone far away from this land,
I miss the precious touch of his loving hands.

I never knew last year was the last day,
I could look at my daddy, hug him, and say:
“I love you, Daddy! Happy Father’s Day!”

Don’t let one day go by without telling him
how dear he is!
Remember you may not have another year to tell him this!

All I have now is great memories, a heart
full of love and eyes full of tears, and
to remember his love throughout the years.

Now I will have to look up at the stars and
say, “I love you, Daddy! Happy Father’s Day!”

My handsome Dad modeling in the 60s.

Coping with death…

Losing a friend or loved one is tough moment in a person’s life, often indescribable by words and only understood by emotion. People tend to grieve in many different ways – ignorance, sadness, depression, denial, etc… there’s no one wrong or right way to do it. But when do you step back and say – there has got to be an easier way.

I lost my father to lung cancer 7 months ago… the loss is still very fresh in my mind, body and soul. How do I grieve? Initially I talked to people about my thoughts. But that’s not really me. I used to be the girl who would put all my thoughts and dreams on paper and hide them away, not actually talk to people about them, because you know, who wants to listen to me go on and on anyway? So now I find my hiding place and think, and cry, and console myself — alone. It’s the safest place for me to be, always has been. Believe me when I say that I also confide in my husband, my other half, because he’s always there for me, but sometimes the best way for me to deal with this is to be alone.

The obvious questions you ask yourself after you lose someone is why? Why him? Why now? I realized since the beginning that I was of course being selfish when I asked these questions. I wanted him around for much longer… to get to know my husband better.. to come see my first home… to meet my kids when I have them.. but those are all reasons for me. I know everyone has to go at one point or another. No one can live forever… they haven’t mastered it yet as far as I know anyway. But now I have to slowly come to the realization that it was better for HIM to go when he did. He was suffering, he was in pain. Why would I wish that upon anyone in my family, or anyone in my life. He was such a strong willed man, and hated depending on anyone else for anything. For him to suffer with this disease any longer would have made him miserable because he would have to rely on others more than he could bear.

Just gotta keep repeating that and keep moving forward.

I miss you Dad… always will. I know you’re with me everywhere I go, just wish you were here.

The strongest, most amazing man I've ever known. R.I.P. Dad

No mom.. you don’t need to pick up the webcam.. yes I can hear you..

Living far away from your parents always has its rough moments… those cold winters when you need some homemade soup… the fevers and chills that are only comforted by your mom’s care.. those words of wisdom from your dad just when you need them the most…

But thanks to technology, the world wide web has found ways for us to stay connected. I convinced my parents a year ago to buy a webcam and set it up for them when I visited (because walking them through those directions over the phone would have been straight up ridic). I set up a Gmail account for them and strategically wrote the password down in several different places so they never lost it (that worked for like a week). I showed them the steps and everything. We had many successful chats with some hand holding and walking them through steps that had to be repeated at every session. I thought they were getting the hang of it. Success!

Successful video chatting.

Now we come to present day, May 24, 2010.

My mother: “I want to skype today! Do you have time?”

Me: “It’s Gchat (for the 56th time), and yes definitely!

…. a few hours pass by ….

Phone call from my mother. “Ok I’m ready. What do I do?”

Me: “ok open up internet explorer. Type in on the address bar.”

… I’ll spare the actual conversation because it was NOT going well. A condensed version of it from her: “gmail isn’t working, it’s not showing up, I don’t see chat, I can’t log in, there’s no place for username and password!!!”

Little did I know (and apparently she didn’t know this either)… her homepage is and she was typing in in the ginormous search bar on the page so she was getting 216,000,000 results for Ironically, the first result is the bloody webpage for gmail and all she had to do was READ it and SELECT the first link. That would have slowed the gray hairs from popping out on my head.

When you search on Google...

This took us about 28 very long minutes to figure out, sorry for the craptastic quality of the picture folks.

So once I get her to find the address bar at the top of the page, she successfully types in, types in her username and asks me for her password. Doh! “Umm… try… icecream.” No I kid. Yeah I really didn’t remember, but thankfully she did within a few minutes.

Success! We are now logged into gmail. “I don’t see chat. Where is chat? I think it’s not working”. Oh good lord slow down woman. I tell her to take deep breaths and relax. I send her a quick “hi” on gchat and she says “OHHH look NOW the chat shows up. Now the list is there. It wasn’t there before!” Ok mom, I believe you.

She knew how to answer my call/request for video chat. Success! We are now seeing each other. “Hiii mom”, I say, although I’ve been on the phone with her for what seems like an hour at this point. She fidgets with the small webcam. “Mom leave it alone, turn the speaker volume up, stop talking into the webcam itself, mom put the webcam down, leave it on the desk”. Oye ve.

After all that madness, and me looking at her face zoomed in while she held the webcam for most of the time, we did have a great conversation and my night ends well… until next time.

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