smittenbyu: (Sketch)
Day 26: close-up
Sure would like to see the gorillas up close one day! For now settle for the close up shot/pic in frame by our sink. N almost went and saw the Uganda gorillas & chimps. He has seen them up close in Rwanda the year before we got married!! So, decided to save this trip as a family trip!

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Day 27:Celebration
Picking up N was cause for celebration!

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Day 28: Flowers
We can't seem to have flowers at home. Not while we are indoors. Or flowers that have their stigmas outside letting all the pollen out. I start sneezing! :( Bummer... love flowers. So, to get any I had to go out looking for flowers. D came to the rescue! D's take on flowers. She drew 20 circles and declared they look like a flower!

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Day 29: Black & White
Rediscovering my kindle and reading in black and white. No fancy ads no distractions (except the 3 year old)

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Day 30: self-portrait
Yesterday was a bit of a chaos with a sick child who didn't think she was made for one cranky kid! So, dug this out. I love reflection pics and managed this in Virginia Beach back in 2008!

Day 30: self-portrait
It was a fun challenge to do and even more so with [livejournal.com profile] inspirethoughts & Manju!
smittenbyu: (Sketch)
Day 24: Animal

I am constantly surrounded by animals, in children's books, stuffed toys, plastic toys, TV. I am hoping that we can get a few more books with actual kids/people in them. And read this article on NPR the other day: As Demographics Shift, Kids' Books Stay Stubbornly White

Then I realise, people like us depend so much on books from libraries we never actually buy new children's books. If we buy books they are used books and so, guess are part of the problem!

Day 24: animal

Day 25: Strangers

D loves company of children. I think most kids do. She however, screams in joy if she sees other children at the park. She goes up to them and gives them the biggest smile and the loudest laugh and a hello all combined! Sometimes the other kid plays along and returns the hello, and many times they freak out and look all puzzled but most times she is just ignored. She is not discouraged, she will follow them around, watch them, play alongside them whether they are bothered or not. She craves and yearns for friendships. In her mind, if you are a kid you are a friend, not a stranger.

She sometimes comes back so dejected that no one reciprocates.

Day 25: strangers
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Day 23: Patterns
We woke up with rain falling outside our window. By afternoon the sun was out and dried up most everything but a few drops that D pointed out on a leaf. Drop of water magnifies the patterns even more!


Day 23: patterns
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Day 18: Your shoes
It's summer time and so it's sandal wear! My birks (Birkenstock)...keep thinking it's time to dispose them and get new ones. But they are so comfy and hard to let go!
Day 18: Your shoes

Read more...with pics )
smittenbyu: (Sketch)
My baby's a big girl! She continuously reminded me as we walked to her preschool together! She in fact didn't want me walking her to school either. She wanted to go by herself. When I asked her if she knew where her preschool was, she pointed out the window to the church where it's located saying, "it's there in the church!" (We can see the preschool from our window!)

She carried her heavy bag happily. I was so unnecessarily worried. We ran into her close friend (who's attending just the summer camp there but in a different class) too and so both were happy. Once we reached into the classrom, our relationship came to an end. She seemed so annoyed I was still there. She refused to hear me out and realised maybe if she gave me a kiss or two and a hug I would leave. So, I left. I turned around and cried! My girl has grown into such an independent child. Sure, not in every sense of the word.

It helps to remind me that she IS getting bigger and is capable of doing so much more on her own. Letting go. And yet, I keep thinking she is too young. What if they change her, institutionalize her personality, mechanize her. oh but it's silly. It's a good school. It's a safe school. Good teachers. And so close by!

With that, comes today's part of photo challenge. I was going to show the cool nifty feature of opening the car without unlocking doors. As long as I have my car keys in my purse, or pocket, I just need to open the car handle and it unlocks the door!! Technology, how cool!

But I realised, within minutes of coming home, I could share the whole excitement of first day of school by sending photos, video clips, on the phone with parents, parents-in-law, and N even though they are continents away!! Now that is just amazing!

Day 17: technology

Thank you to the engineers of this world!!!!! Amazing! You don't know how much this means and how much it helps to cope with the fact that family is far away.

And mom leaves this message, which I never knew on facebook (photo challenge is shared there too). Let me go cry some more. Motherhood is hard.

"chitti, the day you left for Honolulu alone, i too cried in happiness. i could not believe that the timid young girl, smitha, would become so courageous one day. You were going alone, with two huge suitcases. You had to stop at Osaka or some where on the way. You were 18year old then. ma."
smittenbyu: (Sketch)
Felt horrible and once again, must change. Today's challenge was to capture a good habit. I had none!! I guess I could have gotten my healthy lunch but that was about all. I am drinking a can of coke had pizza and waffle fries, albeit from a gourmet place made of whole wheat flour. Their stuff is good though! But really, no exercise. Sleeping late, have dark circles around my eyes and it's no longer my daughter's doing. It's mine.

So, I took a pic of reading newspaper, which honestly I have not done in the last month with in-laws here, traveling, etc. I have been completely out of the newsworld. As I am slowly getting back into it, I am just disgusted at all the news and actions of so called "leaders". So, I stopped again reading the paper.

Day 16: good habit

The scariest article in the paper was Sarah Palin speaking at some Conservative Faith conference here in DC. People actually believe and say the things she and the others who spoke there does?? Really? So they want everyone in the US to convert to Christianity, take the Lord into their lives or leave? If you do that, how are you any different from the Islamic nations? Where is the religious freedom that you so cherish?! The irony....

I am starting to think reading the paper might not be good for health after all...
smittenbyu: (Sketch)
Day 13: Can't live without

They forecasted a derecho. Severe storms. Stay home. Be prepared. Almost a year ago we had a derecho pass us through. It was bad. So, everyone was prepared. So, this was easy - power!

Living in India power outages are normal on a daily basis. It's normal part of daily routine. But losing it for over 24 hours was hard! Not when we were kids, we didn't have all the fancy gadgets that needed electricity. I am talking now at this age, where I listed my obsession as the internet!! How I have changed!!

(Morning of the forecast, there was some thunder, lightning, rain and wind. I had signed D up for a program at the nature center and almost cancelled. But when I called the nature center they said they were going on with their program, he called the rain, "just run of the mill normal heavy rain, storm is to come in the afternoon!" So, we went. It was great! The storm did come in the afternoon, but it wasn't as severe as anticipated, no derecho!)

So, of course, everyone (me included) blasts the weather service for bringing up our expectations over nothing (they have been bad snow forecasters too, always erring against caution). I guess we city folks like to complain!

Day 13: can't live without

Day 14: Eyes

D has beautiful eyes (ok, I am biased). They are very expressive. We get many strangers saying that. I was hoping to capture one when she is having a meltdown, but thankfully she hasn't had one in a while. I tried getting her when she was happy but she wouldn't keep still!!

Day 14: eyes

Day 15: Silhouette - we saw fireflies as we were coming home in the park close by!! D was obviously very fascinated! Then I remembered I didn't have any photo for today's challenge! Well, it truly became a challenge!! She was jumping up and down and running around! Smartphones are not meant to capture kids' photos!! I wanted the silhouette of just the balloons. But there were also vehicles coming now and then, and although D is watchful, I obviously can't depend on that!

And it looks like we captured some fireflies in our balloon!! (But they are the building' lights!)
Day 15: silhouette
smittenbyu: (Sketch)
Thought I wouldn't catch the last of the rays today to add for the photo challenge. Yesterday evening we missed the sunset because D actually went to bed at 8:30pm!! Well, we went in to sleep and was out by 8:50pm!! Last two days have been slowly waking her up by 7:38am to get her used to that time once school starts.

This evening N was able to take her in and I almost missed it!! I just love how we can watch the sunset from our apartment window anytime of the year! (The angle of where it sets changes during the different seasons)

Day 12: Sunset
Day 12: Sunset



D is in the 1% on the growth charts. So, once in a while, we get comments about her petiteness from random strangers. Some try to give me reassurance, as if I am upset over it; some declare of course since I am petite, it makes sense; some just acknowledge she is small for her age but kids come in all sizes. Many just give an awkward pause before moving on to the next topic.

Yesterday, I got the strangest comment from a mom and she was addressing D with it. "You are tiny! It's great since you are a girl! Keep it up!" First, am not sure where she is coming from but really, you say that to strangers?! And especially to a little girl?? WTF! I don't think I reacted. Am too polite really.But it was out there!
smittenbyu: (Sketch)
Day 11: Something Blue - Our blue glass with a blue straw.

This has become D's big girl glass. The straw was originally to try her to get drink other than mom's. It never worked. She now uses it to drink WATER!! She decided that she is done with plastic and time to move on to glass. She walks around holding on to it with both hands...I try not to helicopter around but it's hard. sigh.

She walks around, taking a sip, beaming, declaring, "I am a big girl now!"

Day 11: something blue -
smittenbyu: (Sketch)
Day 6: Obsession - internet connection

Had to think hard for this one. But something that occurred a few days ago made the decision easy. Loss of access to the internet superhighway! FIL was glued (as usual) to the computer, and hubby took our smartphone for his conference (so, he could be that rude participant working while others are talking!!).

Just the thought of not having access, even though I get to check the web maybe 2 times during the day made me go a little crazy!! I do fine when I am on vacations. But at home, especially with a girl who is a handful, it's my only escape!

Day 6: obsession

Day 7: Changes to come - D will be starting summer camp/preschool soon!! yay!! Very excited for her and me!

Day 7: changes to come
smittenbyu: (Sketch)
Day 5: after dark

I wanted the sunset pic as these days we are outside to see it. But D was done for the day, saying farewell to grandparents who returned to India yesterday, a fun evening in the pool, and no nap to boot (although we seem to be back to no-nap days).

So, we had ourselves a cranky little girl by 8pm who refused food as she refused wanting to change to pajamas and then to sleep! ughh... But the magic light has been a saviour in many ways. It gets her to go potty before bed.

We got this solar-powered light in my India trip. It has the biggest environmental footprint however! Made in China, sold here in the US (as a garden light), imported to India where they added an "on-and-off" switch to conserve the bulb's life and made it back to the US with me! :) My parents' neighbor is selling them as Diwali corporate gift!

So the lid has the solar panel, during the day I put it out under the sun and it has given us so far 3 nights of light!! More than promised!



Speaking of bathrooms. I hope to capture this on video, but D takes her own bath (I sit on the toilet lid next to verbally guide spots she missed). She does a cute little dance motion as she scrubs her body and love how she rinses her ears!! 
smittenbyu: (Sketch)
Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] inspirethoughts I am taking part in 30 day photo challenge.

30 day challenge

Day 1: Self portrait - I tend to find myself behind the camera and if I am in the pic it's with D! This is the pic D took of me taking a pic of them (N & D)

Day 1: self-portrait

Day 2: What you wear - I finally dug out my summer sandals and of course it poured cats and dogs, all out storm!
Day 2: what you wore

Day 3: Clouds - Monday was forecasted to be rainy and stormy weather and thought I would take a sunset pic. But by noon the clouds started to clear and so I took it in a rush and took a pic from home!
Day 3: clouds

Day 4: Something green - D's favourite chair at the library
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