Friday, October 6, 2017

First Instant Pot Run!

I bought an Instant Pot for Mother's Day as a gift to myself but before I could open it, we sold our house and had to move. After many months, I finally opened my Instant Pot 3 days ago. After doing the initial test run, I decided to make sona masuri rice in it.

Since it was my first time making this rice in the instant pot, I used 1:3.5 ratio for water for the rice and decided to use 10 minutes of high manual pressure with 20 minutes of natural pressure release and let the steam vent after that. 

As you can see, the rice came out well cooked - if a little over cooked. Next time, I will use less water and release the steam after 10 minutes of natural pressure release and see if that helps. I will update the post then. 

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Such sad news...

When I woke up yesterday morning and heard the news in Las Vegas, I was very sad. Why does somebody do something like that? So senseless and cowardly? Killing so many people from far away.

I feel so sorry for the loss of all those people who thought they were going to have a good time at a concert and then it turned out to be a nightmare. I feel for their families and the pain they must be going through.

Please take a minute and pray for all those families who are suffering right now.

Thursday, September 28, 2017

What's Been Happening in Last Month

Life has been hectic for us with still settling into the apartment and getting used to AGirl going to kindergarten and being a stay at home mom.

We have become used to the heat a little now and also, it's started to get a little colder now in Arizona where we live to the point we need a jacket in the morning to drop AGirl at school. But in the afternoon it gets really warm again.

My parents left and so it's been an adjustment to try and handle the change, especially in the mornings when I'm trying to get the kids ready to go out and getting ready myself.

We made a road trip over the Labor day weekend to visit Sedona and Flagstaff, AZ for a couple of days. We visited the red rocks on the way to Flagstaff and spent the night at Flagstaff. We visited the Lowell observatory over there and saw the Moon and Saturn through the telescopes over there. That was pretty exciting! The next day, we stopped at Montezuma Castle National Monument and that was awesome. I loved the way those Native American buildings are tucked into the cliffs and made me wonder how they lived there.

View from the Church of the Holy Cross

Bell Rock and Cathedral Rock

The biggest beetle I have ever seen in my life
Montezuma Castle National Monument

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Make My Ganesha Event!

Since moving to Arizona, we found out about an event in the local Indian community here and decided to go to it.

It's associated with the Maha Ganapati Temple near Phoenix and the local Tamil Sangam was running a Make My Ganesha event for kids to use clay to make their own Ganesha.

In the religion of Hinduism, Ganesha or Ganapati is one of the most popular Gods and he is the God known for removing obstacles and is worshipped at the start of most rituals. He is also known for his wisdom. He can be recognized distinctly by his elephant head and lots of interesting stories are associated with him.

At the event, we were given molds and clay to put in the mold and the result is below.

It was a very well organized event and only cost $5. We also got to meet a lot of people in the area and AGirl had a blast.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Moved to Arizona!

So we moved to Arizona over the last few days. It's been super hectic and I have been trying to settle the kids down and find all our stuff. Luckily, my parents are visiting us to help me out with setting up the house and helping with the kids.

My older daughter AGirl started Kindergarten in our local public school and it has been a big adjustment. It has been a big learning experience for me as well as I never went to public school in the US. I grew up in India. With homework from the first day of school and AGirl's issues with change, it's been quite challenging.

Once I settle down and get into a routine, I hope to start blogging more.

Friday, July 7, 2017

What I've Been Reading - Jul 7 Edition

Mommy On the Go: 4 Tips for Easy Outings with Kids - Creative Home Keeper - This has some good ideas. Mostly about having 2 diaper bags - one for quick outings and one for longer ones. Also, parking near the cart return area.

9 Times Mint Had No Chill | MintLife Blog - This made me laugh out loud. I've thought those exact same things so many times. Seriously, though, I love mint. It helps keep track of my spending.

How to Choose the Best Over-the-Air Antenna for Free HDTV - We use Sling TV for watching news mostly and have stopped cable or satellite for some time now. But Sling does not have ABC or CW and I do miss watching those channels. One of the options I've been considering is getting an Over-the-air Antenna for getting these channels for free. I will let you know how that goes.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Crying It Out was the best thing I did

Cry It Out or the Ferber method for sleep training a baby is one of the most controversial ones out there. I read about the positive aspects of it and the negative aspects of it. Scientifically, it can't be proven one way or the other.

Both my kids were Ferberized, as it is called. I tried everything else to get them to sleep for more than an hour at a time and eventually got too exhausted and had to try CIO. My older dau
The first few days of sleep training are excruciating. This is what I did -
  1. I bought a video baby monitor. The thought of my baby in a room alone with no way for me to see her was too scary for me.
  2. Follow a bedtime routine. It doesn't have to be elaborate. With m y older one, I had a long bedtime routine but with my younger one, I didn't have the time.
    1. Long Bath, Lotion, Put on PJs, Read 2-3 books, Sing 3-4 songs, Rock her for 10 mins, then put her in crib and leave the room
    2. Short bath, Lotion, Put on PJs, Sing Songs, Rock her for 1 minute and then put her in crib and leave the room
  3. After putting them down, they would scream and cry. Check on them every 2, 5, 10, 15 minutes. I modified this according to how bad the screaming was and the situation.
  4. My older daughter ended up sleeping sitting up for the first few days. So did my younger one.
  5. After a week, my older daughter had started sleeping through the night. It took my younger daughter longer to sleep through the night, about 10 days - 2 weeks.
  6. It took longer to sleep train them for naps but eventually the night training kicked in during the day as well.
At the end of it, I was glad I had done it so we could all get some sleep. I still get only 6 hours of sleep every day and I have a video monitor next to me at night so I can always keep an eye on her.

The hardest part of CIO was listening to them cry all night for so long. And each time I would go to check on them, seeing the tears on their eyes would make me cry. But I had to stay firm and my husband really supported me at that time.

Both my kids slept better and deeper after they had been sleep trained. I don't regret it at all. This may not be appropriate for all kids and I'm not suggesting you do it for your kids but it worked for me and my family. I only did it after I had tried everything else for both kids.

First Instant Pot Run!

I bought an Instant Pot for Mother's Day as a gift to myself but before I could open it, we sold our house and had to move. After many m...