Thursday, May 28, 2009

How To Deal With Separation Anxiety In Preschoolers

Separation Anxiety: 15 Ways to Ease Your Child's Fears

It took months before I was able to leave five-year-old Madison, my fourth child, at school without having to peel her fingers off of me one-by-one and endure her tears and tantrums. The curious thing was that she'd gone to nursery school the previous year without making a fuss. Although Madison's teachers reassured me that she settled down and seemed worry-free within minutes after I left, I didn't know how heart-broken I would feel leaving her in such a state.

Separation anxiety is a little one's way of saying how much they really don't want to say good-bye. Most preschoolers and grade-schoolers experience it at some point in their early lives. Sometimes it occurs out of the blue after a change in the environment. Other times separation anxiety occurs because children are worried about life at home

-- perhaps because parents are fighting or someone is sick -- and they feel a sense of uncertainty about leaving home. Most often, however, separation anxiety is purely a "missing mom" issue. Madison fussed for months on end until I had my eldest daughter drop her off. Almost immediately, the tears and tantrums disappeared. Follow these 15 strategies and you may be able to minimize the problem too.

DO: Keep your good-byes short and sweet. In doing so, you convey the message that you have confidence in your child's ability to cope.

DON'T: Hover around. Your child will sense your anxiety, and this will make it more difficult for her to calm down.

DO: Tuck a family picture or a loving reminder away in your child's backpack for her to look at later in the day.

DON'T: Sneak out. You want your child to know unequivocally that she can trust you.

DO: Develop loving good-bye routines. Madison and I invented a kiss-hug-nose-rub routine that we both enjoy.

DON'T: Bargain or bribe your child to behave. Your little one should be allowed her feelings.

DO: Send clear messages. Your child needs to know that you expect him to go to school no matter how much he fusses, cries or stamps his feet.

DON'T: Take your school-aged child home. If you do, you send the message that if your child cries enough he won't have to stay.

DO: Invite children from the class over, so your child can forge friendships that will make the transition easier.

DON'T: Get upset. By keeping an upbeat and positive attitude about your child's school, teacher and friends, you'll help your child feel safe and enjoy his time at school.

DO: Ask your spouse or another family member to take a turn dropping your child off, or pick up one of your child's classmates on the way to school, and your problems may disappear with lightning speed.

DON'T: Discuss problems with the teacher in the morning. Save conversations and questions for the end of the day.

DO: Involve the teacher. You need someone on the other end who will greet your child and ease the transition.

DON'T: Be surprised if you solve the problem and it reoccurs after holidays and sick days.

DO: Believe in your child's ability to make positive changes.

Remember: Separation anxiety means that a strong and loving bond exists between you and your child.


Wednesday, May 27, 2009

hooked onto youtube

These past days, YouTube has me hooked onto it...and I am loving every moment of it. I log in every single day to see what I can see !! Well I did have a throat infection, and the medication made me week and I had to rest etc etc etc. and that meant that I did rest well and watch some amazing movies.
I watched some serious ones like 'Gulal' - a story of a simple studious boy who goes to a city in Rajasthan to pursue law, but gets caught up in the local politics and ends his life. It is a simple story with some very well written characters and the casting was good too. Loved one song in it...'Rana Ji'; it has amazing lyrics.
That's the link for you.

I watched 'Titli' - a film that has Konkona Sen Sharma, and her mother Aparna Sen, both superb actors. Their equation as mother and daughter came out so beautifully...the chemistry was amazing. The movie is about the daughter 'Titli' who hero worships a film actor called Rohit Kumar...she dreams of marrying this actor. One day, as they are going to pick up her dad from the airport, they meet this Rohit Kumar on the way and as his vehicle has conked off, the ladies offer him a lift ..and then there are conversations of a girl who has a crush on this actor and between a woman (the mother) and the actor. The girl comes to know a huge secret about her mother and this actor. The second part of the movie shows us the completely changed Titli....
A beautiful movie to watch..I typed out the secret, but then it would have spoiled the fun for you go ahead and watch.

'15 Park Avenue' - an amazing amazing movie.. Again the super brilliant Konkona Sen Sharma, this time as a mentally ill girl 'Meethi/Mitali'. The entire story revolves around Meethi and her family, their struggles to keep Meethi at home, her treatments, her thoughts, her life before the illness etc. Shabana Azmi as her elder sister is a superb professor of Physics, and so convincing as a strong, opinionated, confident lady with a short temper.
This is a must watch for all.

'Amu' - Yes...this one has Konkana in it too !! Here she plays an Indian girl who was adopted by a lady and they go and live in LA. She is amazing with the accent, never over the top, but just right. OK..and her name is very cute in it...'Kaaju'.
OK, so Kaaju comes to Delhi to meet her relatives and also to know more about her roots. Little does she know that she would find out about her real parents who died terrible deaths during the riots of 1984.

'AntarMahal' - A Bengali film about the time when British ruled India, and the Viceroy had declared that who ever puts the face of the queen onto Ma Durga during Durga Puja would be awarded the title of 'Rai Bahadur'. This story shows Jackie Shroff as the eccentric childless Jameendar, who decides to get the 'Rai Bahadur' title, and engages a young artisan Abhishekh Bachhan to do the job. The story unfolds the life of this Jameendar household, the level to which this man goes to get his wife pregnant, the way he treats his wives. The anguish that his wives face, the dynamics between them is beautifully portrayed.

I think those are all that I saw, currently watching another Bengali movie 'Bariwali' which has Kirron Kher as the owner of the house.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

The non resident

One morning, as I went to the kitchen to make my son's school snack-box, I was horrified to see a really huge cockroach ....those of you who know me, know what I would do in this situation....RUNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNN
Yes ran I did fast as a half-sleepy person can run...and screamed to the husband who was getting the son into his uniform....'there's a huge...really huge cockroach in the something fasssssst'
The husband went to the kitchen, and came back to the room...where I was standing on the bed....the son wondering what happened to his mom..
Husband said 'I killed it, he was not our it was easy!!'
I ask: 'how did u know he was not a resident'
He said: 'he did not know where to hide' !!!!

ha ha ha ha ha

Monday, May 18, 2009

children of mixed parentage

Our weekend mornings are spent lurking around Bangsar while the son has fun at Gymboree. It is here that I get to see a lot of mixed breed kids...I don't think that is a nice enough term to use but it gets the point across quickly. I am talking about kids born to a white man-Malaysian Chinese or Malay lady; or white lady married to a local guy.
These kids have a mix of facial features, making them look really confusing. I am in no way looking down on them, but more in terms of amazement and curiosity.
These kids look confused to me, they cannot identify themselves with the local scene coz they have only little local genes in them and the rest of the, which is white gets more confused in the local scene where the whites are not in majority....
This makes me think about my son too, although there are lots of Indians around us, will he be confused as a Marathi-speaking boy, that he cannnot hold a conversation with everyone in his mother tongue? That he can speak in Marathi to only his family and a handful more....will he face an identity crisis in future? or is he going through it every day even now?
During the early part of my childhood we were in the northern part of India, and our Marathi was not that good, we spoke only at home...outside it was pure Hindi or English in school.
When we moved to Pune, I was in the 2nd standard, and me & my brother were made fun of by our building kids for our famously funny Marathi !!!
We did not know our Marathi number...I still get confused after about 50 ..
I picked up the language, but my brother was not good at it, to the extent that in the 7th standard his Marathi teacher called mom to school to show his essay on 'majhi aai' (my mother) in which he had gone overboard with his use of non-sensical Marathi words !! and she even pleaded with my mom to shift him to German language from 8th standard !!

For all or little that I understand, I think we should let kids develop as per the local scene, and not try to force their original culture on them. Having said that I myself would shudder to think that my son would know more about Chinese New Year than Diwali or Gudhi Padwa....
I would even hate if he picked up the local accent !!
So I guess a fine balance needs to be made between the original culture and the culture that the child is growing up in.
I know a lot of people who lived in the USA, had kids and once the kids were of 5-6 years they came back to India or atleast moved to Asia for the fear of alienating their kids from Asian/Indian culture. I don't consider that the right thing to do, but I cannot judge them as they lived through the issues and problems themselves, I am a mere observer.
Even my next door neighbor is leaving for India next month, and says that if they don't go now, their kids will never like India. The kids are now 7 and 6 years old. Again I do not know if that is a reason good enough to make you go back home....I do not know...

Saturday, May 16, 2009

some deep thoughts...

These days when one surfs any news channel, newspaper etc there are stories after stories of torture, suffering, some man-made some nature sees people, children crying their heart out and hoping really hoping for someone to have a little mercy on them and free them from their sorry state. They seem to be vying for the kind attention of the Almighty by all means possible...
Hinduism believes in the 'Atma' or the soul; and also there is the principle of re-birth and re-incarnation. And they way all these are linked is by the thought or belief that what wrong deeds we did in our past life, we pay for it in our present life, and the wrongs we do in this lifetime we will pay for them in our next life or re-birth.
It makes me think and makes me very sad to see all the suffering around us now, and then to think of it this way that all those who are suffering now are only bearing the brunt of having done something wrong in their past lives...
When a child suffers, through an illness, through the loss of one or both parents, or faces abuse in any the child repaying for his bad 'karma' during a past life? How can a child be allowed to bear such pain when elders who we all know are doing wrong deeds are roaming around scout free....when will they repay? why should they get the chance to enjoy in this life and then not worry until the re-birth? Why can't they suffer for their bad karma in this lifetime?

Some say that we pay for our bad karma in this lifetime itself, I'd like to believe this least it makes one feel confident of seeing bad people being put to test or suffer for all the evil they inflicted on someone else...

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

A great book for parents !

I highly recommend the book "How to raise a Brighter Child" by Joan Beck to all parents who have children under five.The author advocates early learning and stimulation for babies,toddlers and preschoolers without pressure ,ofcourse.The author says that early childhood (0-6 years) is a time of tremendous development and parents should take advantage of these precious years to provide children with the mental stimulation to boost their intelligence.

While reading the book I got the feeling that the late author was a believer of the Montessori method of education.But she doesn't focus fully on Montessori and shows parents how they can help their children learn in everyday situations.She doesn't give an outline of lessons but shows how to play games with children and how to interact with them so that they learn. There are examples of how to take advantage of children's natural curiosity to stimulate their minds.

Some useful suggestions in this book are:

  • Giving the child a good language model to copy.

  • Using "Bingo" and dice games (such as snakes & ladders) to teach the child about numbers

  • Making nature intriguing to the child by giving her a magnifying glass.Leaves,insects...everything looks more magical when enlarged.

  • Encouraging children to make collections of seeds,insects,leaves etc.

  • Inspiring creative art beyond crayons and paper:how paper plates,peanut shells and toothbrush can be used in painting.

  • Some montessori activities such as cutting matching pieces of cloth of several different textures-velvet,silk etc and asking the child to match them by sight and touch.

The only drawback of the book is its unimaginative layout devoid of any illustrations. This book was not updated after 1999.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Art work by children in Aadu's school

These were some of the drawings that were put up on the notice board at Aadu's school. I am amazed at the use of colors, the cover-the-paper concept, and the shadings, and more amazed at the overall concepts of these pieces.
I did not notice the standard of study of these students, but they are from the primary section for sure...and for primary section these art-pieces are simply stunning !!!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Chicken Chettinad Style - a must try

My plate

His Plate

Yesterday we made Chicken Chettinad style, the recipe came from a dear friend Shaimanti...who had put up photos of the same recipe on her Orkut page. It looked soooooo tempting that I had to ask her send it to me..
Now initially (before the recipe arrived) I thought Chettinad would be a difficult and tedious recipe to follow...but boy how wrong was I !!
Without much delay...I present to you all the easy-peasy recipe try it, it is really fast to cook and too good to eat !!

1 kg chicken, washed and cut into medium sized pieces

1 cup small onions, shallots (sambar onions)

1 cup chopped tomatoes

1/2 tsp turmeric pwd

10-12 curry leaves

1 cup coconut milk (extract from 1/2 coconut)

fresh coriander leaves for garnish

salt to taste

1 tbsp oil

Make a paste:

2 green chillis

8 garlic flakes

1″ ginger

1 tsp poppy seeds (soak in warm water for 10 mts)

Roast and make a powder:

1/2 tsp pepper corns

1/2 tsp cumin seeds

3/4 tsp fennel seeds

1 1/2 tbsps coriander seeds

6-8 dry red chillies

2 cardamoms

1″ cinnamon

6-7 curry leaves

1/2 tsp oil

1. Drizzle a vessel with oil and roast the cumin seeds, coriander seeds, peppercorns, fennel seeds, red chillis, cardamoms, cinnamon and curry leaves on medium heat stirring constantly for 2 mts. Remove from fire, cool and grind to a powder.
2. Make a paste of the ginger, garlic, green chillies and poppy seeds. Keep aside.
3. Heat oil in a cooking vessel, add the small onions and curry leaves and saute till transparent.
4. Add the ground paste and cook for a minute before adding the chicken and cook on high heat for approx 4 mts and do stir the chicken once in a while.
5. Reduce to medium heat, add salt, turmeric pwd and tomatoes and combine well. Let the chicken cook in this for 4-5 mts, uncovered.
6. Now add the coconut milk and transfer the contents to a pressure cooker. Pressure cook for 4 mts or until one whistle. Open lid and combine well.
7. Finally add the ground masala pwd and cook for 3 mts. Turn off heat and garnish with fresh coriander leaves.


Ever since I came to Singapore,threading my eyebrows and upper lip has been a real problem for the simple reason that very few beauty parlours here actually practise threading.Mostly for facial hair removals, they use waxing and for eyebrows they use tweezers.

But I somehow prefer threading because it has fewer side effects than the other methods of removing facial hair. Waxing is perfect for arms and legs but it seems so harsh for face due to all that tugging and pulling.Using hair removing cream also doesn't seem right for face because I read somewhere that it may lead to darkening of the skin in the long run.

Previously,I used to go to Little India for threading but fortunately I found an Indian beautician in a nearby beauty parlour a few months ago. I threaded my eyebrows and upper lips from her a few months ago but after that I did not do any threading due to lack of opportunity and ofcourse my own laziness.Yesterday,when we went to Bishan and while my daughter was doing "rubber art" in the Junction 8 mall, I saw that beauty parlour. Usually I am alone there with the kids and never get to go to the beauty parlour.I went to the parlour and asked whether the Indian beautician was available and the girl at the reception said yes.And so I went back to the area where my daughter was doing artwork to request Faisal to babysit both the kids so that I could be in the parlour for half an hour. He agreed to it (or rather had to because I was so insistent) and so I rushed in the parlour to do full facial threading. My skin is tanned due to the strong Singapore sun and so I thought a full threading would take away some of its effects.

The beautician was very skilled in threading and so it hurt less but the pain was still formidable.However,at the end of the process I was quite pleased with the results! My skin looked brighter and smoother. Somehow waxing doesn't give the smooth lines that I get from threading!

Sunday, May 10, 2009


Boggle is a great game for children as it is entertaining as well as educational! I bought the preschoolers (ages 3-6) version a few weeks ago for Zunairah and she loves playing it.

The game has picture cards,word cubes and a rack for displaying the cards.When two people are playing they take turns and one person would pick up a picture card and display it.The opponent would then build the word by choosing the appropriate letteres from the word cubes. Suppose if "Frog" is displayed the card would display the picture of the frog as well as the spelling and the child will build "f-r-o-g" by choosing the letters.The spelling can even be kept hidden when your child is beginning to read so that he attempts to build the word by putting sounds together and guessing the spelling. So this game can be played on two skill levels.

Apart from being enjoyable,this game can teach preschoolers:
  • letter recognition
  • word recognition

  • reading

And they can learn all this under the disguise of play.In a game situation a child is so desperate to win that he absorbs concepts quickly even without realizing that he is learning.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

I loved these

I chanced upon these amazing candles at:

These are Lego-candles, and are super cute...

This is a fruit-friendly lunch box for kids. Notice how they have 2 circular-elevations, just right for storing an apple/orange/pear etc. With 2 fruit compartments, there is still enough place for a sandwich, a small drink and even a banana !!
This company is called Concentrate, it is a london based company that designs products to help children concentrate more in school.
All their products are amazing. Do check their website !!

Friday, May 8, 2009

Stop your sugar cravings ...

Knowing what's causing your sugar cravings can help you put a cap on them long before they force you into bigger clothes. Which of the three main types of cravings do you have?
  • You say: Feed me now, or I'll kill you.
    This usually reflects low blood sugar. Eating sugar helps in the first few minutes but makes things worse in the long term.
    Break it:
    Sucking on a Tic Tac or two can be enough to stop the attack. After that, eat more protein and fewer sweets to keep your blood sugar stable. And eat those foods often: Multiple small meals instead of three big ones decrease cravings.

  • You say: I'd really like a Twinkie.
    You generally feel okay but find yourself going through your cabinets looking for sweets.
    Break it:
    Holistic docs say—without great evidence, yet there have been some successful treatments—this could reflect yeast overgrowth in the gut and that treating it with probiotics (healthy bacteria) can help. We like probiotics made from bacillus coagulans, such as Digestive Aide or Sustenex.

  • You say: It's my period, and I'm depressed.
    Low levels of serotonin—the "happiness molecule"—around your period can cause you to crave carbs.
    Break it:
    Eating dark chocolate (not a whole storeful; try an ounce or so) will supply a natural antidepressant called PEA, plus the carbs you crave. And any other time you think you might eat something when you're not really hungry, go for a walk or have some water. Much of the "I want to eat" feeling stems from lack of sleep (walking can help wake you up), lack of sex or lack of water.


Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Vist to Kinokuniya

I went to Kinokuniya bookstore today afternoon because I wanted to find out about the price and availability of the Oxford Reading Tree series . After picking up one set for my daughter, I browsed the children's section and I went crazy over their collection. It has an extensive collection of children's books which includes great read aloud books as well as board books and picture books.And I think it has the whole collection of Eric Carle's books...I never knew he wrote so many books until I visited Kinokuniya. The children's collection is so rich that I wanted to buy loads of books.But I stopped by reminding myself that the library is a source of great books and that I should first make a list of the books that I want to purchase.

I finally bought two letterland books,one set of phonics cards and one set of Oxford Reading Tree books. There was no time to look into the other sections of the bookstore as I knew that my kids would be up from their afternoon nap in a short while.

After going home and opening the Oxford Reading Tree set,I discovered that they were wordless picture books . I was quite disappointed as I wanted simple stories but the sets were all packed and there were no lose sets for checking what is actually inside. However,after going through the books,I saw that they were quite interesting and a teaching guide is there to guide the parents.

This week 6 years back

This week six years ago I met Amol, in a very traditional meeting, typical girl-meets-boy, in front of family and they talk and then decide if they like each life partners !!
We both were just talking about the events and recalled every small detail as though it all happened just yesterday!!
There were lots of funny moments...lots of things seem so funny or outrageous now that we can't stop laughing about them...
Amol used to live in KL that time, and had come down for a week to see all the girls his parents had shortlisted (so typical NRI na...), well I was one of them and his parents had met us all some months back.
So as the days to Amol's arrival got near, his parents called and we decided to meet them in Pune (we used to live in Mumbai then), now why Pune and not Mumbai where it would have been easier?
Well at that time SARS was at it's height and we did not want to take chances with Amol !!! ha ha ha, and we even had a family joke going that 'if Amol sneezes just run away...' !!!!
OK, so he came, went to Pune and we went to our home there, and then on 4th they all came to our home, we all spoke, then our brothers..(my Dada and Amol's younger brother Parag) decided that we (youngsters) should sit separately from the they arranged chairs in the balcony and we spoke some more...then slowly the brothers excused themselves to go inside leaving us both alone !!! ha ha ha I remember we laughed at that moment even then.
When we were alone, we chatted generally...and he asked me 'our education is same...our professions are at the same level..would it lead to conflicts?' I first burst out laughing.....and then told him 'conflicts will happen anyway...not necessarily due to same education etc' and then laughed some more....
They went back then...
Evening we were to go to their home, and tell our decision...oh yes before that we went to lunch some where ..Shreyas I think it sure though..
There we met my MBA pals Ajit and his lovely wife Harshala....and Ajit understood what was going on, then in his own way struck up a conversation with Amol, then as he was leaving he signalled to me 'he is good..go ahead' !!! So much for friendly advice !!
Evening we went to their home and we were asked by my now FIL if we like each other...we very coyly said yes...and then we decided the engagement date and wedding date.
As simple as that .... no Pundit only our ever faithful & trusted 'Kalnirnay' to guide us.
So engagement was set for the 10th of May in Mumbai, wedding November 2nd.
That week while I was in Pune, we even did our shopping for the Engagement, my saree at Shagun, his clothes at Shoppers' Stop, our rings at my favourite Tanishq.
The next day we went to COEP boatclub for a date !! Did a lot of talking, had some chai etc...and he sang a song for me.....boy I was floored !!
Now after all these years with him through some rough weather and mostly bright fun and laughter filled days....I am only glad that I chose him as my life partner.....
Love you A!!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Books that we have enjoyed recently

I keep borrowing books from the library for my kids as I love reading to them and they love being read to. Some books that we have enjoyed recently are:
  • Curious George: This is a series on a mischievous monkey who is very active and is always getting into trouble. His adventures usually starts because of his inquisitive nature and at the end he usually is able to sort out the problems and even save the day!The only recurring character in the book,apart from George, is the man with the yellow hat, who is his master and who had brought him from the jungle.Curious George was brought to life by the writing of Margret Rey and the illustrations of her husband, H. A. Rey in the 1940s.Since then it has been translated into many languages and remains very popular among children. My four year old is very fond of curious George but I think the books are a bit too "wordy" for my two year old son. We have just read a few books of the series.

  • I'll teach my dogs a 100 words by Dr.Seuss: Both my kids loved this book and it is a great book for reading aloud because of the rhyming words. Unlike some other Dr.Seuss books,it is not very lengthy.

  • There is an Alligator under my bed by Mercer Mayer: My daughter was fascinated by this story (I think more so because I read it at bedtime!) and I also quite like the book. It is about a boy who is sure that there is an alligator under his bed. Getting no sympathy from his parents who "never saw it'', he forms a plan of attack. He leaves a trail of food from his bed through the house to the garage door. He then follows behind secretly as the alligator gobbles up the goodies, fresh vegetables and fruit making its way to the garage. The boy then locks the door and thereby traps the alligator in the garage. The last page shows the note he leaves for his father, telling him that there's an alligator in the garage and to wake him up if he needs help.Kids will relate to this young hero's triumph over normal childhood fears and the clever solution that he comes up with.

    I am looking forward to borrowing some more books next week and one of the books is "The Gruffalo" by Julia Donaldson. I have borrowed this book several times and it is well-loved at our home...more about this later....

Monday, May 4, 2009

I am doing it now at 32 !!

On my 22nd birthday, my dad had given me a beautiful card and had written a very nice poem was in Hindi...not a poem-poem...but just his thoughts in verses ...
Apart from that he had mentioned in the other written matter about "catch-22". Back then I did not know what it meant...and I asked him what it was and he told me about this book called 'Catch 22' by Joseph Heller. He also mentioned to me that it was a best seller and a very enjoyable book.

My father has a massive collection of books, and I remember in our summer vacations he would select books from his collection for us to read. I get my love for reading from him :)

When we were smaller (i mean before we could digest novels or anything other than comics) our summer vacation would one chore that we loved...and it was to re-cover all of Papa's books, with brown paper (just like our school books), then writing the Title and author's name in our scrawly handwriting...(my Papa's handwriting used to be very very it is bad...he says all blame to computers and type writers coz they take away the joy and opportunity of writing with hand).

OK, back to 'Catch 22'
2 or 3 years back, when I was home on holiday, I looked through the book collection and found 'Catch 22' and immediately put it in my bag to bring to KL to read later. Well later really proved to be late..coz I got it out from my book shelf only this weekend and have started reading it.

So something that I wanted to do at 22...I am finally doing it...reading it at 32 !!!

Saturday, May 2, 2009


phewwwwwww what a month that was....April !! 
The month marked my son's start of proper school (i mean pre-school). My brother was here, we watch the Formula 1 race in Sepang and had a blast. Wait..........I have written all this before have I not?

Well on a personal note, it was a month where I began going to the gym ... no...not any hi-fi one  in some fancy mall....I just go to the gym that was there all these days in my own condo. It is a well equipped gym and has 2 treadmills., 2 cross-trainers, weight stations for all muscle groups, stationary bikes, some yoga/floor exercise mats and crunch-bench, push-up bench and weights.
I want to get fit and then climb aboard those me now they look snooty and snobish as though to say that "you're not ready to come to us yet" for now it is just me and the trusty old (err it is not is quiet new) treadmill. I walk for 25 minutes, well why 25 because I increased my time by 5 minutes every 4 odd days at a time..and had started with 15 minutes.
I tried increasing the incline, but my back ache came it was back to zero-incline and a speed of 5.5
I know 5.5 is not a great speed but please yaar...consider the fact that my bones and muscles have not done much in the last 2 odd years. Only if walking in malls was considered exercise I would be a marathon athlete by now ;)
I feel good after the walk and the sweat...
I go and sit by the pool in the sun for 15minutes after the walk....why? aarre bhai Vitamin D khane ke liye. In 15 minutes our body makes over 10,000 IU of Vitamin D. 
On one such sitting session I met an Aunty in the pool who was teaching a kiddo, I started talking to her and minutes later I had a swimming coach ready to make a fish out of me every thursday !!!! (have I told u this before?...even if I have...just bear with me)
The gym and all takes a good 50 minutes off from my limited 'alone-time'. After that it is a rush rush to the kitchen to finish off Aadu's lunch and mine and also to eat some great wheat-flakes with some cold non-fat milk. This really puts energy in my system minus the calories.
I am still trying to figure out short-cuts or rather faster ways to ensure all of us are well fed and by that I mean the quality. My bath is then a very rushed affair and I barely have time to relax in front of the TV to catch up with Rachael Ray or Martha Stewart for 10 odd minutes...then off I run to fetch my darling bachha.
In all this I am looking for work-from-home options and have sent in my rusty old CV to a few places....I just hope something comes by soon !! I really need it.

Ok for this month, I hope that I can write daily...maybe shorter ones...I am going to really make an effort.
Chalo is off to buy some velcro white school shoes for Aadu as per instructions of his teacher. They have a problem with the laced-up ones !!!!!!!! Gosh....and then next term or so they will teach the kids to tie shoe-laces (minus the laced-shoes) and then the kids can't do it is a vicious circle....
For now, I will buy the velcro ones but I will get Aadu only the laced ones so that he learns to tie them, more importantly the soles on the laced up ones are thin and very good to the still-forming feet of this age-group; the velcro ones are very stiff soled !!

OK OK...the husband and the kid has finished their game of Wii and I must go now...