Sunday, December 6, 2009

Canon T1i meet Switch..

Amit and I recently invested in a DSLR camera - the Canon Rebel T1i. After reading many articles and blogs online we decided on this one and have been experimenting with the manual modes at home. Who better to practice on but my fat cat Switch. Needless to say he probably hates the camera and you will see why below.









Friday, November 13, 2009

I dont get it..

The newest video game in our house is - Modern Warfare from the Call of duty series. The game is definitely a hit in the US and I have heard several people (all boys ofcourse) speak of it with excitement. Their sales topped $300M on the first day of its release. I happened to watch Amit and Aval play it one evening and honestly it made a little sick. It was released a day before Veterans Day in the US and the game definitely made me appreciate and respect our soldiers and the threats they face even more. I have to say that the graphics in this game are incredible and maybe that’s why I was a little uncomfortable watching it - made it all feel too real. The thing that grossed me out the most was the sight of blood on the lens/helmet face cover when you shoot someone or are being shot. I don’t get why this is so appealing to the masses. How do you enjoy such violence, like knowing it exists isn’t bad enough - may be it’s because I am a woman and think warfare leads to more destruction than peace. Don’t get me wrong I get that sometimes its necessary but in real life - not for hours of entertainment. No wonder we see so many disturbed people who sometimes have trouble separating reality and their cyberspace lives and make poor choices in a country where owning a gun is legal. This video game is rated M - 17years and above. At 17 I know I was still very impressionable and not very mature to make an educated decision. Shouldn’t we be developing games that teach them tolerance and peace? I am not in denial of the evil out there but may be for once we should separate it from our hours of entertainment at such a tender age.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Happy Diwali and Saal Mubarak!

May the divine light of diwali spread into your life with peace, prosperity, happiness and good health. Per the Gujurati calendar the year ends with Diwali - which adds to the festivities. So here is to the new year and new beginnings.


We wish you all a Very Happy Diwali and New Year! All the best for the coming year from our family to yours!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Britney Spears!!

Yes I did.. I went to the Britney concert at the American Airlines Center. The opening singers

And Finally Miss Britney Spears!!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Labor Day Weekend..

Its Wednesday today and I still feel the effects of Labor Day weekend. That should tell you we had an awesome time together. The madness started on Thursday last week with the first arrival – my brother Dhaval who flew in from NY. He was followed by Gaurang and Purvi who drove in from Austin at around 6pm. Then we were off to the airport again at 9pm to pick up Paras and Reenal who flew in from the Cayman Islands. And our final arrivals flew in from Boston at almost midnight – Raj and Kajal. In total Amit and I made about nine trips to the airport in a span of 6 days – it’s a good thing we live so close to DFW. With a total of 11 people in one house things can get crazy but I think we managed sharing 4 bathrooms pretty well and no one was ready to kill the other at the end of it all. What did we do you ask?? To note a few..
We had several hours of entertainment with the Wii, played poker, played Tabboo, played Kajal’s great drinking game, ate A LOT of Tex-Mex, went to several bars including the Ghostbar at the W, saw DeMarcus Ware of the Dallas Cowboys, drove through Dallas downtown, enjoyed the Mustangs in Las Colinas, spent some time at the Japanese gardens in Fort Worth, Hung out by the lake at Sneaky Pete’s, almost ate Breakfast at Breadwinners in two different locations at the same time (sorry Amit) haha, slept at 4-5am mostly every night, got a speeding ticket, got warned about not wearing seatbelts in the back seat and finally to top it all off had a great laugh at G for booking his ticket out of the wrong airport. I really hope everyone enjoyed the Texas hospitality and we are actively recruiting them to move to Texas. We missed a few cousins and hopefully we can have another reunion soon so they all can join the fun.


Come back soon Y'all!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Hosts!

I love to play hostess and I am not really sure how Amit feels about it but he plays along anyway because it makes me happy. Last weekend Ritu and Sahir stayed over with their two cats on their way to DC. I didnt realize cats (especially our cat - Switch) could be so possessive of his environment aka our house. He always wants to go play with the neighbourhood ones but didnt really take to Chinky and Stoli roaming the house. Switch was moody all weekend and hissed at everyone especially Ritu. I guess thats what you get when you try to introduce cats to Fatty Switch. Now that they are gone he is back to himself - purring and rolling over to have us rub his fat tummy. After the Sait/Sainani family left we have been preparing for the long weekend arrivals. We have family coming over tomorrow for the Labor day weekend. This is the first time we will be hosting 7 people at one time. Including us we will have a total of 11 people at hotel Las Brisas :). I am looking forward to the family reunion and hope they enjoy their trip and like DFW. Will post updates after they leave on Monday or may be Tuesday when I am rested and energized after a hectic weekend. Hope you all enjoy the long weekend too!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Superstitions and Farewells

Amit and I just got back from Austin (our second home). And as always we had a blast with great friends. The boys has a guys night out on Friday (dont ask me what they did..) but my friend Ritu and I went to Trudy's to get the night started with a Mexican Martini. A must have if you are ever in the area. My other friend Faiza joined us there and then we headed to the movies - The Ugly Truth - pretty funny actually. Then came Saturday...
So the reason for our trip. Our friends Ritu and Sahir have decided to quit their jobs and go globe trotting for the next four months, after which they will move to Canada where Sahir will attend grad school for a year. We have known Sahir for over 8 years now and have shared some amazing times with him. Like the time we were at Pete's Piano bar and Amit and him decided to sing old Hindi songs after the night was over. If you know Sahir you will understand why this is funny because the boy doesnt speak Hindi much. Ritu came into our lives in 2004 when she took a job in good old Texas and decided to come to Austin with the whole gang that summer. This is when the two met and ofcourse Sahir was smitten over her and asked me to get her telephone number for him. The rest is now history... As a married couple you always look for other fun married couples that you can be yourselves with and this is one that Amit and I have shared many weekends with and had fun times with. Like my birthday weekend when we went tubbing down the Guadalupe river and the boys were stuck looking after the two of us girls. Canada is like home to me since my brother, other family and lots of friends live there. Normally I spend about a week there every year - but with Sahir and Ritu there now I know I will have to spend 2. We will dearly miss them and hope they have an amazing time discovering the world.

Do you believe in Superstitions? On Saturday Amit and I helped S&R wrap and pack a few things and in the evening we were going to have a farewell party for the couple. In the afternoon the boys left to run some errands and Ritu and I did the same. I am not a big believer in superstitions but for some reason on Saturday I had to believe something was off. Like the stars werent aligned in the correct position. On our way to the store I got into my first wreck ever on the intersection of 39th street and Lamar Blvd. This intersection will be forever imprinted in my mind. Thank God no one was hurt and the car's bumper and side panel were damaged but not badly. Accidents happen and I am still not sure whose fault it is, but since it was my first wreck for some reason its bothering me a bit. I keep thinking about what I could have done differently. Oh well too late now eh! Later that day Ritu and I headed to pick up the food for the party and on our way there we almost got into another wreck so this really really really made me wonder that something was really off. The rest of the night we joked about how Ritu and I should not be driving in the same car anywhere since we were jinxed and we were glad that the farewell party was a walking distance from S&R's apt. Since I had heels on, the three of them thought it was funny to make me aware of every step and bump on the road incase I tripped. Even when we got to our friend's place they asked me not to go out on the patio incase I fell over or ran into the glass door. I am glad that the car was still drivable and Amit and I could return home to Dallas safely today. May be the bad spell is over and just lasted the day haha...Anyway we are sad that our friends are moving away but we definitely got to share one more awesome weekend with them before they leave.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Letting my guard down..

While browsing blogs several months ago I ended up at this one - Jessica and her husband lost their young daughter Tuesday to cancer in January. I started to follow their blog when Tuesday was in the hospital fighting to stay alive and have followed it ever since. I dont know this family personally, have never met them - but my heart aches for their loss. I admire their strength to share their life with friends, family and strangers like me. I wonder if trusting the world with your deepest thoughts takes a load of ones chest. Its really hard to know the right thing to say to someone who has lost a loved one - young or old. I know I am the worst at it - but I have realized all it takes is a "How are you doing" and acknowledging the hole. A lot of us tend to avoid the uncomfortable conversation but may be if we didnt it wouldnt be so uncomfortable. I wonder if I could ever be so open with my emotions and thoughts. As far as I can remember I dont think I was ever open about my truest deepest feelings with anyone. I always feared that if I did share them with someone and let my guard down - they would come back to hurt me. That people would use them against me in some form or the other.. silly I know. I guess its all about trust - trusting your family, friends, spouse and especially existence. Taking that leap of faith and knowing that at the end everything will be ok. And so here is to you Jessica for giving me the strength to start sharing my feelings - even if its in the most simple of situations.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Strength and Support

I underwent abdominal surgery recently and I contemplated long and hard on whether to ask my mum to come look after me. Amit and I decided not to make her travel all the way here especially cause Amit's grandmum and aunt were in town and they volunteered to help. As a kid you rely on your parents to nuture you back to health and I often worry how I would do it without them. But I had nothing to worry about as my darling husband took amazing care of me while I was in the hospital and back at home. He made me breakfast in bed on the weekends, made sure I was ok for lunch and also made sure I ate the dinner Nana made everynight. I cant thank him enough for the love and support he has given me in the last four weeks. He also surprised me with this balloon to lift my spirits since my amazing coworkers and friends had already sent me flowers.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Great Find..

I have wanted a Buddha statue for a while now - all the ones I have seen are either really expensive or not exactly what I have been looking for. This past weekend my girl friends and I ventured into TJ Maxx's Home goods store and found this piece. After looking at the price it was a definite steal.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Almost there but not quiet 30 yet!

It pays to have a Thursday birthday - the celebrations continue through the weekend. It all started with Amit waking up in the middle of the night to wish me a very Happy Birthday. It was funny because he didnt remembering saying that the next morning. I made us some good old fashion indian chai and had a little tea time before heading out to work on Thursday morning. For those in finance quarter end months are crazy busy and at my work May happens to be one of those months. But even with the crazy work load I managed to get out for lunch and then my manager brought me cake and invited a bunch of people to my desk to celebrate. I must say that was a little embarassing - having about 15 grown adults singing "Happy Birthday" to you. The day just got better when I received the most gorgeous flowers from Amit. The facilities lady came by to tell me I had a delivery but warned me I would need some muscles to bring it down. She wasnt kidding this arrangment was huge and beautifully decorated with roses, lilies and hydrangeas. The fragrance from the mix is absolutely refreshing and my co-workers around me gladlly enjoyed it too. On Friday a few of our friends came in town to continue the birthday celebrations. We ended up a small middle easter joint for some shisha and food. On saturday Amit's aunt and grandma were gracious enough to cook lunch for the whole clan after which the girls ended up resting and shopping a little. The boys went to an anime convention in Dallas. The evening started with dinner at Bengal Coast this really nice Asian fusion restuarant in Dallas from there we headed to party!!!

Arent they gorgeous??

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Earthquake really...

My natural body alarm woke me up at 7am today (Saturday) - but I went back to sleep. At around 11:30am Amit and I woke up to the house shaking. At first I thought I was dreaming but we just confirmed that it was a minor earthquake. I have never experienced one so didnt know what to expect. Thankfully it was only 3.3 on the magnitude scale.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Unexpected Good Times

I love unexpected visits from friends. My friend and house mate Barbara told me Thursday our friend Kajal from Houston was coming into town on Friday night. I picked Kaj from the airport and we went uptown for some drinks - it was great catching up with her. On Saturday Barbs and Kaj had to attend a wedding so I had the house to myself since the boys went to watch the Mavs game. GO MAVS! Later that night we ended up at Ghostbar at the W and had a blast. I have noticed that we always have a great time when we dont plan out nights for weeks and instead just go with the flow.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Windy City!

One of the benefits of working for a multinational Consulting firm is the continous training opportunities. Last week I was able to attend the Contract Management Workshop in St Charles. My Co-worker and I decided to extend the trip by arriving a few days earlier in Chicago to shop and tour the city. I have to say this was my first true Chi town experience. We scored a great deal on a hotel downtown right off Michigan Avenue. My brother also happened to be in Chicago the same weekend with one of his friends so we decided to check out the John Hancock Tower and the party scene as a group on Saturday. Sunday was a beautiful sunny day and we made the most of it by walking down Navy Pier. It was not as crowded as I expected - thats what you get for going on Easter Sunday. I have so many friends in Chicago - all of whom I didnt get to meet. Will definitely have to make another trip out there and make it up to the ones I didnt get to see.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

March Madness

This year March madness followed into April thanks to Dhaval's visit. He arrived in Dallas on March 29th after spending a wild weekend in Miami with Aval. It was great having him in town - we spent last weekend in Austin meeting up with friends and enjoying some of our favorite places. The weather in Austin was absolutely fabulous and we made the most of it sitting on the patio at Trudy's enjoying a Mexican Martini - yum.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Green Thumbs

Its spring and that means time for spring cleaning - indoors and out. Our process started with the following:
  • Painted plant pots
  • Repotted the over grown Rubber plant
  • Potted seeds for Moon Flowers and one other kind (the name I dont remember haha).
  • Treated the yard with weed killer and fertilizer
  • Cleaned out the pantry (trust me in a house of four that was much needed

Every year I get excited to add something new to my plant collection - this year I added

  • 4 Mixed tropical plants for the kitchen
  • Aloe Vera
  • African Violet
  • Orange Lily Plant
Lets see how long they last - they should do fine considering my Goldern Pothos and Rubber plant have survived over 2 years (woohoo).

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Myers Briggs

ENFJ - Extraverted iNtuitive Feeling Judging
I am going to Chicago for a training class in April and in preparation we were asked to take this personality test. This is what i found out about myself today!

"ENFJs are the benevolent 'pedagogues' of humanity. They have tremendous charisma by which many are drawn into their nurturant tutelage and/or grand schemes. Many ENFJs have tremendous power to manipulate others with their phenomenal interpersonal skills and unique salesmanship. But it's usually not meant as manipulation -- ENFJs generally believe in their dreams, and see themselves as helpers and enablers, which they usually are.
ENFJs are global learners. They see the big picture. The ENFJs focus is expansive. Some can juggle an amazing number of responsibilities or projects simultaneously. Many ENFJs have tremendous entrepreneurial ability.
ENFJs are, by definition, Js, with whom we associate organization and decisiveness. But they don't resemble the SJs or even the NTJs in organization of the environment nor occasional recalcitrance. ENFJs are organized in the arena of interpersonal affairs. Their offices may or may not be cluttered, but their conclusions (reached through feelings) about people and motives are drawn much more quickly and are more resilient than those of their NFP counterparts.
ENFJs know and appreciate people. Like most NFs, (and Feelers in general), they are apt to neglect themselves and their own needs for the needs of others. They have thinner psychological boundaries than most, and are at risk for being hurt or even abused by less sensitive people. ENFJs often take on more of the burdens of others than they can bear."

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Clutter

When we moved into our house 6 years ago I didn't know what we would put in all these kitchen cabinets.

We moved from a small two bedroom apartment so I figured we would have many empty cabinets - but today they are all filled with something or the other. I have been on a cleaning frenzy this past month and am on a mission to get rid of all the clutter. In going through the cabinets I have found things that I didn't know we even had. What are the chances I even need them when I did just fine without them the last several years. March madness this year is going to be about cleaning out the house and getting rid of things we don't NEED. Its taken me a little longer to figure out my new years resolution this year but I have finally found one - NO MORE BUYING THINGS I LIKE AND DON'T NEED.

Friday, February 27, 2009

iPhone

I finally gave into the iPhone craze last month and its just so amazing to me how I did without it till now. My favorite applications are

1. Facebook
2. Weather at the tip of my hands
3. Video Poker - i am addicted
4. Lose it - Its an understatement to say I have neglected my health the last year so its time to catch up. I am doing a pretty good job tracking my daily calorie input and hope to drop a few pounds slow and steady.
5. Urban spoon - definitely helps when you go to lunch with 10 people who cant decide what they want.

The best feature for me is the calendar - it syncs with my work one and I haven't missed an early morning calls so far woo hoo.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Canadia

I thought 2009 was going to be a slow travelling year but the travelling has begun. I just got back from my first 10 day trip - went to see my parents and brother in Canada. We have lots of friends and family in the GTA that I spent most of my time there in social visits. The weather was freezing cold, I dont think the temps went above 32F any single day. But I was in heaven with snow and ice all around me - my ice chewing cravings were satisfied. We also made a day trip to see the Niagara falls in the winter. It was beautiful but the wind really knocked my breath out. It doesnt snow much in Texas so I made the most of my trip and attempted to make my first snow angel and had my first snow fight. This time I also got to spend some time with the kiddo's - my friends are having babies and this trip I tried to spend some quality time with them and their babies.

Below are a few pictures - Enjoy!
Niyati (Nilesh Bhai's daughter)


Rahul (Vinti's son)
Bhavik (Sneha's son)
Dad, Mum and Dhaval - Lakeshore

Thursday, January 1, 2009

HAPPY NEW YEAR !

It's 2009 already - wish you all a very Happy and Prosperous New Year. May the coming year fill your days with happiness and smiles. Amit and I celebrated New Year's eve in Dallas - the plan was to go to dinner and bring in the new year with a bottle of champagne at home. But I had heard so much about the celebrations at Victory Park so we decided to venture out there. The area was packed with people young and old and at midnight they had fireworks to bring in the new year.

YEY for 2009 !!