London Travelogue – National History Museum

I have not been written about my travelogues for ages. It’s been five years in London and I have not written much about the place, this beautiful victorian world-famous city.

Who don’t love museums, they are the place of knowledge, history, something to ponder about what we have come from but few times boring! My first formal visit to Museum abroad was not in London – it was Louvre Paris. You can read all about it here.

London has kept its museums well and beautiful, place is a real treat for museum lovers – above all they all are FREE. So here is my brief on the museum –

image5(1)Museum itself looks so beautiful from outside. The Natural History Museum has an ornate terracotta façade by of high Victorian architecture. The terracotta mouldings represent the past and present diversity of nature.

image1(1)The museum is home to may be million of life and earth science specimens. There are huge collections of botany, entomology, mineralogy, palaeontology, zoology and what nots. Given the age of the institution, many of the collections have great historical as well as scientific value, such as specimens collected by Charles Darwin.

The museum is particularly famous for its exhibition of dinosaur skeletons, the famous one is  large Diplodocus cast which dominates the main hall. It looks familiar, isn’t?

image15The one which shows the beginning –

image4(1)It is commendable that how they have put all the effort in restoring the original and recreating the replica.

This one took me to Muir Woods, California –

image13Muir Woods in California is famous for its long Strangely I haven’t written about it on my blog. It holds the large area for Redwood trees, also called Sequoia. Quick introduction to Redwoods – It is an evergreen, long-lived tree living 1,200–1,800 years or more. This species includes the tallest living trees on Earth, reaching up to 379 feet (115.5 m) in height (without the roots) and up to 29.2 feet (8.9 m) in diameter. These trees are also among the oldest living things on Earth.

image14The next thing intrigued me there was Mars’s rock –

image12This rock was fell in Egypt in 1911. Around 11 million years ago it was believed that a comet or an asteroid hit the surface of Mars and was so powerful that few pieces eventually landed on Earth as meteorite.

Also museum has a huge collection of gemstones,

image9Above are organic minerals.

image10Can’t believe these rocks are natural – colours and textures are so intricate.

image11I was so last admiring the diamonds collection in th museum that forgot to take its pictures!

image8

Museum has a huge collection of fossils too –

image7(1)Marry Anning is called as fossil woman. Some of the finest fossils in the museum are collected by Mary.

image6(1)Reva’s favorite section where they have kept butterfly’s fossils –

image2(1)And lastly but not the very least – mammals section, this is where kids had all the fun

image17 image16 image3(1)I have not even covered the 50% of the museum in my post, this is the area we could manage to see with both the kids in 2-3 hrs of time. You need a day or two to visit the museum and admire its collections.

Highly recommended to visit with kids or when in London.

Sibling Love

My childhood with my little sister, well I wouldn’t have quoted it as ‘Sibling Love’. Boy! we were real fighters, literally! We fought for every little things, used all the physical and verbal strength to let each other down, nothing we agreed upon and everything was meant to be disagreed. But keeping differences aside – I love my sister dearly and think this loves matured when I got Reva and Viraj. Watching them growing and playing together gives me immense pleasure and inner satisfaction, Though I feel bad that me and my sister could have spent our days less fighting and more loving, but hey we have each other at least! Someone to call upon and rant over randomly.

Reva and Viraj has been clicked recently (touchwood!) but still here and there I hear Reva mouning about ‘how I should eat more and get a baby in my tummy again and this time she should be having her baby sister’ as she didn’t ask for baby brother!’ – how on earth she got this idea I really don’t know…

They have started to play tag together, hide and seek and the best one is shouting and screaming in rhythms and oh watching tv together as if there are no kids in the house…

IMG_1564Frozen is favorite between two – nothing beats the title song.

IMG_1697Enjoying on the swing…

We decided that we will call Reva as ‘Didi’ so that Viraj will follow us and call her Didi, but we forgot that kids are Smart! So when Reva is getting ready for school or we have to chase her to be quick – we shout for her which is followed by Viraj shouting ‘VEVAAAA’. Now where is Didi – he cutely points to Reva and say ‘VEVVAA’. First thing in the morning, he wants tea biscuit because we are having tea and both kids love dunked biscuits in the tea, so it has to be two – one for him and one for ‘VEVAA’.

Love you my munchkins xx

Revisitng old pictures

Picture of my princess taken in Oct 2012 –

Below is taken some time in April/May 2015 –

IMG_1688She has grown so much since then – turned six years this August, in Year 2 and still havent finished her first coloring book🙂

We parents are so crazy I tell you – every morning after breakfast and school run chaos, when I see elder kids on the way to school and hope for the day soon to come when I will be having independent kids like them but when seeing these pictures when Reva was so little and boss around so cutely then I feel why she has to grow up – cant i have my cute and naughty kids be the same age forever but hint of independence too😛

The Lazy Me

If you would have asked me like couple of months (lets take couple of months = 12 months), what kind of person you are, I would proudly quote me as an active, energetic, never like to stop etc etc. But now I am just the opposite (in the making for sure). I don’t feel like to do anything, just wanted to lie in the cozy blanket with a book in hand or iPad to watch endless light movies or TV shows – the one I’m catching up with is ‘The Great British Bake Off’ and at the moment watching ‘The Hundred-Foot Journey’ (cheeky eh?)

So coming back to being lazy – I have so many things in my mind to start, to complete but all are just sitting there and brewing, waiting that when the lady will come out of her ‘comfort zone’ and act on them:-/

Where shall I start, my list looks like a perfect list that anybody wants to do – reading, crocheting, running, meditating, sewing and last one is updating the blog more frequently……but pagal lazy man just don’t let me😦

[sigh] [sigh]

First vist of the Tooth Fairy

On 10th January, Reva’s first tooth fell over. She has been struggling with that wobbly tooth for over two weeks. It all started when her best friend in school lost her tooth and she told Reva all about it. That week Reva’s tooth started wobbling. Thanks to her friend that Reva was already aware of what to expect while tooth wobble, hurts and fall. “Mummy it’s going to be real blood in my mouth when my tooth fall – seriously!”

She had real trouble while eating as it was not just one but both of the bottom teeth were wobbling. I was kind of scared too. Following the tradition I did all the prep work for the tooth fairy night a week ago and started counting days.

2015/01/img_1969.jpg

So a week passed and tooth was wobbling as ever. Saturday early morning Reva was having high temperature and was really poorly. Doesn’t want to eat or drink at all. As soon as her fever went down I gave her an apple to munch while I was sitting beside her. Suddenly she took out the tooth from her mouth and started jumping – my tooth, my tooth!!!! It was indeed a bloody show😦

2015/01/img_2041.jpgFinally tooth came out, she started crying. My poor baby! Though Ms Sunshine was all excited within a second about the tooth fairy’s visit. She washed the tooth, put it in the box and her next question was – is it night yet?

Managing hyper active girl who is waiting for tooth fairy and running 102 temperature was really tough! We finally made it through the night, usually she is down to sleep within 15 minutes but I have to ask my Mum to lie down with her because it was passed one hour and she was wide awake. I need to take care of the other hyper active one too. While lying down with Nanny she told her all about tooth fairy who is really teeny tiny and how she is going to take her the tooth out of the box under the pillow and will put a gold coin. And finally she went to sleep.

So now it was time for real ‘tooth fairy’ action. Before putting Reva to bed I asked her what is she expecting in the morning and she told me it would be nice to have gold chocolate COINS under my pillow – I bought silver and gold both kind and hid it away safely. Finishing all the night chores I went to the chocolate coins hiding place and couldn’t find them – perfect!! Looked all around, in all the cupboards, poly bags, shelves, kitchen, toy boxes, laptop bag, all the possible places where I can accidentally keep and forget and even trash bag but just can’t find it!! oh my wooly world – this can’t be happening to me. I have a little and unwell girl who is sleeping with a tooth under her pillow and expecting a teeny tiny tooth fairy who will take her tooth away and put a chocolate coins first thing in the morning!! I asked my sleeping Mum if she has seen that ASDA bag with gold and silver coins in it. She got off from the bed that instant went downstairs to help me. She looked into that supposed to be hiding cupboard first and wiggle things here and there and VOILA she found it!!! PHEEEEEEEEWWWW!!!

And that’s the reason God created real and physical mothers as FAIRIES! (shhh.. don’t tell that to Reva) What would I have done without her! Thanks a ton Mum🙂

Morning started with screaming, shouting, jumping and with all the possible excitement in 103 deg fever! To my all time surprise – she did her good habits without even me asking. Had her first chocolate coin and after breakfast had another one.

One down and 27 to go! Poor daddy missing all the fun…..

Snapshot

In short what has changed, progressed in my life in two years –

  • Reva is five years old and in Year 1, has two wobbly teeth, started playing piano, can write her own songs and can sing any conversation in a proper tune, has participated in five plays on the stage so far, can swim easily on back and is a duckling on swimming on her tummy, avid colourer (never use same color in a picture), big fan of Frozen and other princesses – would love to grow her hairs like Rapunzel, don’t want to ride her bike without stabilizer anymore, though she is not into much physical activities but learning to do splits and somersault! she hides when she see couples kissing or holding their hand together or getting MARRIED!, she can do two digit sums, subtraction, fluently read her school reading books, shops sign boards, labels, menu cards in the restaurant, can write the words and sentences using phonetics sounds (almost correctly!), proud sister of her little brother, she prefer his toys over her these days, love to listen songs and dance – favorite at the moment is Nach lo sare – gu phade ke! –

2015/01/img_2014-0.jpg

  • Viraj turned 14 months, he has developed great motor skills and hand coordination, going to be a foodie like dad and love playing piano with her sister (Didi), like to copy Reva all the time – follow her, want to snatch whatever she is doing or playing with, the best thing is to see him smile as soon as he see his big sister after having serious and big cry! Recently started loving music – like Didi his fav song is G-Phade ke (ahaaa!), love to watch Peppa pig and Thomas and friends –  I must say that all these years I was under impression that toy cars, trains are over rated by toy companies to promote their products as child as little as 5-6 months is not smart enough to understand what HE likes or SHE likes –  turned out 32 year old Mum is a dumb!! From the very  start I saw Viraj’s inclination towards wheels, he can pretend anything with the wheel and can ride it along – be it a small car, teethers, Reva’s dolls, mummy’s iPhone 5 S, TV remote, slippers – anything which can ride on the carpet is good enough to play.

2015/01/img_2016-0.jpgO Boy! where the time flies, I meant to dedicate a seperate post for both but think I have to go with the flow and capture as the moments come. I still plan to post some earlier and memorable incidents for sure…

A lot has changed with me as well, it was a real tie what to choose first – Viraj’s birth or loosing 30 pounds last year! A real tough one😦 Alright alright…! I choose Viraj’s birth. He was born 4 weeks early but he was a healthy boy and touchwood stayed up to date with his growth. I don’t know what caught me but I decided to change myself or shall we say work upon myself this time – was carrying my overly weight for so long and it was time I leave those silly excuses behind and do something real good in my maternity leave other than being stay at home (no offence to SAHM please). For the motivation I joined Weight Watchers and it really worked for me. I lost 30 pounds in almost four months. I can proudly say that it was the best moment of my life – I was feeling more confident and after so long was really feeling good about myself!

My office was 52 miles from home, though it was a hell lot of traveling but I was able to manage, my lovely manager gave me full flexibility in the work and it was going perfect until I joined back work after my maternity leave last April. Managing kids after two hours of exhausting drive from work or even if I was working from home there were so much other things to handle – school runs, partially looking after Viraj, what to cook, what to clean, and WORK. Though I hired a nanny but when you are home we mother don’t have IGNORE buttons – you have to run when your little one cry or not feeling well or what if Reva needs pickup from school urgently! Though Vishal was also working from home when I go office but travelling so far wasn’t ideal so after thinking it through a lot I have changed my job last November [sigh]. Was a good move though but I wasn’t much happy about it – I kind of gelled in my previous job, was comfortable and in a good position. Nevertheless it is going well now, transition is slow but now I am feeling alright.

Vishal has gone through a lot in past six months, MIL diagnosed with cancer. He travelled to India during summer holidays for three weeks to support them when she was first diagnosed. Thanks God it was on its initial stage and timely caught. It took more than two and a half months for radio therapy to be started. He is still in India for last five weeks helping MIL to recover, will be back shortly. I am really glad I asked my Mum to come over to help me because it wasnt an easy last five weeks – when Vishal flew I was down with chicken pox (infected by Reva’s virus), then Viraj was down with chicken pox for two weeks. Once he recovered all of us was down with cold flu. On Boxing day Viraj was admitted in hospital for severe wheezing, he was there for two days. I only started my new job and already asking my managers sick leave and work from home. Anyways, MIl is recovering now and I sincerely hope she gets better soon. Can’t wait for my normal life to back again.

New year and New me!

Well here I am back on my blog after 2 years, is giving me mixed feeling – guilt is more than excitement. I have tried to resume blogging in 2014 and even started writing a post during second week of Jan, which goes like this –

Coming back on my blog after more than year  – Oh my gosh where the time flies? It’s a mixed feeling – guilty as well as excited. Life has always been super busy for me, a year came and gone and so much happened which I think would take another post to put in words. First thing first, we are blessed with a baby boy🙂 can proudly say that we have a complete family now. Next big news is Reva started school – can’t believe my eyes when I was dropping her off to school on the first day. She was so excited and thrilled to be the part of the big school. Serioulsy, why kids grows so fast. Before writing this post, I was scrolling down my old posts and they were mostly about Reva’s growing up but now I have another pumpkin who is two and a half month old already [sniff][sniff]

After experiencing motherhood second time, I feel different (in a good way of course). I want to resume my me-time which was kinda lost in a day-to-day hush-hush. And my blog top the list. To be honest blog defines myself. Through writing I priorities things I love and family. So I have decided to write at least twice in a month, will write about following things which I love the most –
1. Family
2. Crochet/Knitting
3. Cooking
4. Music

As you can see the there is commonality in both the posts while I was writing them – feeling! and what to say about me-time…. thanks to my iPhone who has enough resources to keep me entertained while I lie down with my kids after 8 PM in the bed with my headphones on.

Speaking of feeling – This year I have decided to follow a routine to chose a word of the year (inspired by Claire Diaz-Ortiz) and which is HAPPY. Being happy is the most important thing in our life – I know it is cliché to say but over the time I have realised that happiness is like an engine oil to our system. It makes your life smooth, removes the whining and sighing noises, makes you more vibrant and full of positive energy which you need at the first instance when you are a working mum of two, living abroad with no options of quick helps and workarounds. so take a break and smile for a sec🙂

Now moving on to my greatest news in the above draft post has turned 14 months and walking like a pro! Reva and Viraj are doing really great. Thanks a ton to the Almighty for giving me such a  beautiful family  – feeling really blessed and happy!

After mixed bag of 2013 and 2014, I am really looking forward for year 2015. Hoping to have lots of positive energy, happiness and love.