Baby ShowerMon, 19th Jan '15, 7:30 pm::
Yesterday we had a blast at our baby shower, superbly organized and planned by Juliet's friend Rebecca. I will write more later but in the meantime, here are the awesome photos taken by my buddy Arthur.
The year in which I try to make things not too seriousFri, 2nd Jan '15, 2:25 am::
My life over the past few years has become far from simple. The work I was doing started to get pretty hard and things at home turned serious once my wife began to grow a baby inside her. I feel I have gotten used to everything taking more and more of my time and power just so it is done right. I have never tried to be perfect, but as I grow older, I find myself wanting things to be done my way.
At first, I did not have a way. I just wanted to get things done. So I had to find a way and along that way, I slipped and fell many times. After doing this many a time, I learned that it was important to look before I put my foot down. Then I learned to put my foot down only on dry ground, not wet floor. Then I learned to slow down when climbing down stairs even if they are dry. Then I learned to hold the handles on the side in case someone else was running down and pushed me.
My fear of falling has turned me into a funny old man who takes too long to find where to put his foot down, only walks on dry ground, slowly, and holds on to the handles just so he doesn't fall. Believe it or not, this is the road I made for myself as I learned how to get things done without slipping and falling.
Why am I talking about this now and thinking about such things? Because for the past few months, I have lost a lot of sleep wondering how I will ever show my son all the wonders of this world without him being confused all the time about everything. My grown up life is anything but simple. It has taken me many years to figure out which boxes to fill on what pieces of paper and which keys to push in what order. And I am still learning how to talk to people when things go seriously wrong and when to open my mouth and when to keep it shut.
Growing up has not been easy. Learning has not been easy. Everyone around me keeps telling me how little sleep I will get once I have a child. So if everyone is telling the truth, raising a child, even if it is the best thing in life, will not be easy. What has me worried is that my life, which is already so full of worry, will get even more busy and hard.
That's why I have decided to be simple. I don't mean I still stop working on hard problems or stop filling out the different boxes on important pieces of paper. By simple I mean I will spend more time doing small, easy things that take me back to a life when I did not worry so much. I will spend more time in the kitchen, I will spend more time in the park, and I will spend more time doing things that do not need a computer. These are the things I need to do so I can raise a child.
My problem all this time has been that doing simple things, makes me feel like I am not going to have enough time to do work (both computer and paper work), which causes me to worry about money and keeping my promises. So I avoid doing simple things that could take time away from work. I now realize that that is the true cause of my life becoming so crazy and confusing. I only do things that are not simple! Of course my life has become nothing but simple.
There is no way to suddenly make my work and home life simple. That's not how life works. But the nice thing about a day is that there are only 24 hours and if I spend four or six of them doing simple, happy things with my wife and child, life will start to feel and slowly become simple and happy. Of course the things that worry me will never go away. But starting now, I will stop fighting them every waking hour. It's time for me to smell the roses, make some breakfast, and change a baby.
And to show that I can do simple, I wrote this entire piece using nothing but simple words from a table of only ten-hundred most used words. If you don't believe me, check it out yourself by going here: The Up-Goer-Five. If you have read anything I wrote in the past, I hope now you understand why this piece reads like it was written by a ten year old.
Happy December! 2014 is almost over and our lives have never been busier. Ever since my parents left in early November, we have been busy with planning and organizing for the baby - redoing the master bathroom so we have a proper bathtub, emptying out my office and converting it to a nursery, cleaning out the garage and attic to make storage space for toys, cradles, and clothes.
Juliet is doing well and so is the baby. I love her nesting instinct because it's making her donate/dispose old clothes and furniture. Since our house has lots of storage, we've gotten into the habit of just saving everything. I finally broke my habit when my dad helped me organize all of my paperwork and I threw away years of accumulated junk. Juliet is getting into that mode now and I couldn't be more supportive.
Things will continue to be busy right up into Christmas. If all goes according to plans, we'll have the master bath and baby room ready by then, with plenty of space in garage and attic. After all the house projects are done, we're hoping to take a short weekend away from home and relax one last time before the baby arrives.
Many of my friends have shared their experience of becoming a parent with me and they are all so different. Despite the 8-hour long class on "Preparing for Childbirth" we took last weekend, I still have no idea what to expect and how it's all going to work out. All I know is that I know nothing. Hopefully in a few months, I will start to learn all over again.
After two months of staying with us, my parents left today. We had a great time traveling around Florida and just spending time with each other. They got used to our home zoo and Juliet and I got used to having nightly dinner chats with them. Now the house is back to being empty but only for a few more months! Juliet is doing well and the baby-boy-in-belly is quite active. With the due date getting closer and holidays coming up, life's going to get a lot busier for both of us.
Spicy Fluffy BirthdaySat, 4th Oct '14, 6:50 pm::
I had a very exciting and eventful birthday. We had a late breakfast at the Vinoy and lazily walked over to the International Curry Festival where we had delicious Indian and Thai food over the course of a few hours. Then we went antiquing, followed by an hour at the SPCA, petting kittens and rabbits. We got home and Juliet and my parents had cake ready for me. Lots of people I know complain about getting older but I love it. Here's looking forward to another year!
How about Mowgli? No? Tarzan? Simba? George-of-the-jungle?Mon, 22nd Sep '14, 11:00 pm::
Today we found out that we're going to have a baby boy!!! Juliet is doing well and so is the future baby boy. We took my parents to dinner, along with our friends Rebecca and Carlos and revealed the baby's "blue" theme via a delicious cake.
While Juliet has been super cheerful all day, my parents and I are admittedly speechless. Juliet asked me why I didn't seem as excited as her and all I could say was that I don't know how to express a lifetime's worth of prospective happiness in a single day. I'm used to being happy about a toy here and a kitten there. How does one express the sheer infinite joy of everything that awaits us in a singular emotion?
My parents are staying with us for 6 weeks, then leaving for India, and returning back in January 2015. My grandma will be here in a month and stay with us for 2 weeks. I would love for her to return back in January with my parents but at her age, I don't know if 32 hours of travel each way is doable. Here's hoping she gets to meet her great-grandson someday soon. In the meantime, I'm going to make sure Juliet stays relaxed, stress-free, and healthy.
Last Saturday, my parents & uncle/aunt arrived in Tampa. This was the first time my parents have been to the US since I came here in July 2000. They're all on a 7-day cruise right now to Jamaica and Mexico and my parents will stay with us for a couple of months afterwards. This is the first time in 15 years that my parents will be present for my birthday. Also, we haven't spent this much time together except for the 45-day vacation I took to India in the summer 2002.
Apparently I had put my blog on hold back then because I was having too much fun in real life (and also because dial-up sucked in 2002). Now I wish I hadn't, as I only have vague memories of what we did over that month and a half. Good thing broadband is ubiquitous now. Even if we do mostly mundane stuff, I hope to write it down for posterity.
Since my parents left for the cruise within a day of arrival, we didn't get much time for activities. Those will happen in the upcoming weeks. Though I did manage to wedge in a fun airboat ride in the Everglades for everyone just before I dropped them off to the cruise terminal. And best of all, they got to see our home zoo with all of the critters.
Arriving February 2015!Thu, 21st Aug '14, 3:50 pm::
Good news everyone! Juliet is 13 weeks pregnant now and we are very excited. My parents are coming to visit us in a few weeks and we hope to spend a lot of family time together.
My friend Tony created the glorious announcement image above from photos taken with the help of our friend Kelly. We took individual photos of all of our animals and even balanced diapers and baby powder bottle on the back of our tortoises.
While no animals were harmed in the making of this image, I was peed on, pooped on, spat on, licked, clawed, gnawed, and thoroughly scratched while helping Kelly and Juliet take all of the individual animal photos. I'm not complaining though. I think of it as training to be a parent.
Good bye CookieSun, 17th Aug '14, 11:45 pm::
Our beloved cat Cookie passed away tonight. He had been Juliet's little boy since his birth over a decade ago. Six years ago, he met my cats Giga and Tera and taught them how to be more cat-like. Before meeting him, my cats were lazy, fat, and afraid of the outdoors. A few months of spending time with Cookie and my cats started climbing trees. Cookie was a perfect cat and always came running to us whenever we called out his name. He loved playing with our puppies and roamed the neighborhood making feline friends. We are going to miss him so much! RIP Cookie :-(
Happy Decade Giga & Tera!Fri, 8th Aug '14, 11:25 pm::
My cats Giga & Tera are officially 10 years old today. They shall enjoy a feast of treats and lots of cuddles.