Category Archives: Personal

French Toast with Strawberry Coulis (Father’s Day Special Breakfast)

It is my hubby’s first Father’s Day this year. And what a great father he has been.

He used to be one of those men who wasn’t very fond of babies. When I became pregnant, he had self doubt in his parenting skills . But boy were we so wrong. He was the first one to hold the baby. When he did, the look on his face was so priceless. He was simply in an awe (I think he was fighting back tears). It is the most precious and unforgettable moment in our lives.

Since then it’s been a roller coaster ride being new parents especially baby having infant eczema. It had been trying times at the most. But my hubby’s relentless dedication and optimism to manage and care for our baby has been most inspiring to me. I believe it may just be why my baby’s skin condition is now fully healed.

I’m so thankful to have a hubby like him. So to celebrate his first Father’s Day, I made him his favourite special breakfast.

I believe everyone knows how to make a French Toast. Here’s my version and it’s such a delicious recipe.

Ingredients
4 Eggs
4 pieces of rustic white bread
60 ml of cream
2 tablespoons of raw sugar
Pinch of salt
Dash of Black Pepper
4 tablespoon of Olive oil
1 stick of cinnamon
2-3 cardamom whole

Strawberry Coulis
12 (250 grams approx) of Frozen Strawberries or fresh ones if available
2 tablespoons of raw sugar
1 teaspoon of Vanilla essence

Crispy bacon
4 slices of Bacon

Whisk eggs, cream, sugar and salt and add dash of black peppers.

IMG_7693.JPG

IMG_7694.JPG

Spread the mixture thoroughly on the bread and set aside let it soak.

IMG_7695-0.JPG

In a bowl, add halved strawberries, sugar and vanilla essence. Pop it in a microwave for 2-3 minutes until the strawberries are mushy and syrupy. Set aside for plating.

IMG_7698-1.JPG

IMG_7699-0.JPG

Heat pan and add tablespoon of olive oil. Add cinnamon stick and cardamom to infuse oil. Add a slice of bread and fry it gently on low to medium heat. When it golden, flip it to cook the other side. Repeat same process for all the other slices of breads.

IMG_7696-0.JPG

IMG_7697-0.JPG

When breads are done, fry bacon slices until crispy. Remove it from the pan and dab off the excess fat in a paper towel.

IMG_7700.JPG

Slice french toast in triangular shapes. Serve it on a plate with strawberry coulis and crispy bacon.

IMG_7701-0.JPG

Advertisements

My Online Shopping Haul

As a busy new mom, I am still trying to find time to do regular things like shopping. Whenever I go shopping, regardless of meticulous planning, I have to rush while shopping or we just have to cut shopping trip short. My baby doesn’t like to sit in the pram for too long and he gets fussy so I have to hold him. It’s pretty good work out trying to shop while carrying little one.

When I plan and go shopping, I can’t find anything I like. But on random visits to mall, I find stuff that I want to buy. It happens to me all the time.

It’s one thing or another as so I’ve started to do lot more online shopping

Online shopping is very convenient. It’s the best thing for busy parents like me. I can browse for hours on my phone without having to leave the couch. There’s no pressure to buy the item, so I’m loving it.

The are many downsides of buying online. It’s hard to know if an item is going to fit or not. Regardless of standard sizing, the fitting are not same from one company to other. I can fit into size 10 easily with Target outfits but if it’s Zara then I have to buy size 12.

Item looks completely different to photo.

Return or exchange is always difficult as you have to bear the cost of postage and handling.

I have had lots of hits and misses with my online buys. But it does give me the satisfaction of getting retail therapy that I need once in a while.

Here’s my review of my retail experience and quality of produces from these companies

20140801-092231-33751908.jpg

Boohoo

I ordered a pale pink midi, a striped tee, golden belt and pack of 3 belts with gold buckle and a polka dot skirt.
The communication was fantastic. After placing the order they kept updating my order status like when it left their warehouse to arrival in Australia. Also once in the country, I got tracking ID from Aus post and was also informed about the day it was being delivered. Mind you I opted for standard free shipping.

The order was neatly packed in clear plastic bags. I was very happy with the quality of the product. The most expensive item ($25) was for metallic belt which is gorgeous. It’s a on trend accessory which will add that wow factor to dresses.

20140801-092634-33994495.jpg

Pink midi and polka dot skirt came with belts. I expected a pale pink midi as per description but it is very pink than it seems in the photo. I will mostly like wear a lot of striped tee and polka dot skirt. I think metallic gold belt and pink midi will go in my wish list pile. I have put on a few kilos after my baby’s birth so until I lose those kilos, they are waiting on my ‘wish I’m skinny to fit in these list.’

20140801-094047-34847083.jpg

20140801-094144-34904726.jpg

Overall my rating for Boohoo is 9 out of 10. Great communication, good quality items and affordable price.

Misguided

I’ve been watching this ads on Telly for Misguided. So I jumped online for my retail therapy. I wanted to buy some box tops. I went to entire collection and when I see the ones I wanted, there were only in size 6,8, 14 and 16s available. I couldn’t find any in my size. It must be quite popular item. I end up buying 2 jumpers, a black and white and a canary yellow. One was $35 and another $25.

20140801-095505-35705513.jpg

20140801-095507-35707129.jpg

I also bought a cream cigarette trousers for $45.

20140801-095720-35840161.jpg

After placing the order, I got the confirmation of order email. I again opted for free standard shipping. I didn’t receive any information on my order status after that confirmation of order email. I waited for a week and kept checking my order status online but it didn’t have any information on whether it was shipped or not. After a week I contacted misguided team on the order status. I did get a prompt response saying the order has been shipped and due to free shipping, there’s no tracking ID. However next day I got my parcel so I was happy chappy.

The order was neatly packed. The canary yellow jumper is very nice and bright. It’s loose fit and not that thick so I can wear it with boyfriend jeans in spring, when it’s still that chill in the air. The black and white jumper I ordered is Med/large but it’s a tight fit for me. Again it will go in my wish list pile. The trousers is bit yellowish for my liking but I can work with it.

Overall I rate them 8 out of 10. Not great at updating on order status, but items are good quality and as described. It’s slightly dearer than Boohoo but nonetheless it’s good buy.

Happy shopping everyone.

Note: This is not endorsed review and it’s based on my personal experience.

Smashed Car window

I woke up this morning and looked out the window. The sun was coming up. It looked like it is going to be a beautiful day ahead. I thought will take baby out for walk later in the day and enjoy the sun. It’s been so cold, wet and gloomy winter at this side of the world, while rest are enjoying summer. But the beautiful golden rays of sun gave me an instant lift. It didn’t last long though.

Hubby was going to work. He went out the door, but I saw him hovering around the car. I look out the window, our eyes met and I knew there’s something wrong. I looked at the car, the rear window was completely shattered and saw glittering pieces of glasses strewn all around the car. My heart sank, why would someone do that. Nothing was taken from the car and they didn’t even try to open the doors.

20140713-164404-60244125.jpg

We went out last night to run some errands. We took our new car and left the old car parked outside in the street. After we came home, we forgot to bring the car back in the driveway.

It was just right outside our home and in the view from our bedroom window. I’m very surprised that both hubby and I didn’t hear a thing although we are very heavy sleepers.

It’s a old car but I love it. It’s my first and I learnt to drive in that car. It gave rides to my family, friends, acquaintances and even strangers. It’s been to beaches, it’s been to snow and so many places that hold good memories for me. It has seen lots of hellos and goodbyes from numerous trips to airport pickups and drop offs.

So I felt very hurt to see it smashed. I know it sounds crazy as it’s a machine not human but the emotional connection with it runs deep as it beholds all those precious memories.

I can’t comprehend what joy do people get by giving misery to others.

I called the police to report the incident. The police officer asked me to give her all the details about the incident. I gave her blow by blow and told her that there’s beer bottle pieces strewn all over the car and the road. I was thinking they might need it as an evidence and find the culprit by DNA testing. I guess I watch too much crime dramas like CSI. She took the notes and said she will send a report to my address. After I hang up, I was still expecting police to show up for investigation, but they didn’t. I was talking to few friends later and they told me normally police don’t investigate these trivial matters as they don’t have resources.

20140713-164512-60312300.jpg

Our car insurance doesn’t cover the extras like windows so we have to foot the bill. Luckily we got a cheap quote as of about $200 as it’s a old car, the company can’t find the new window so it’s going to be second hand window. As it’s a reputed company, I hope they will do good job.

I’m just happy that car wasn’t taken.

Keep safe and take care peeps.

20140713-171435-62075014.jpg

Food Allergy: Fact or psychological manifestation

I know the topic of my post is quite outrageous as food allergy is a known medical condition that affects people and can be fatal in some cases. Food allergy is caused when your immune system thinks a food as a harmful invader and releases histamine and other chemicals to protect the body from harm. The symptoms can include hives, swelling, wheezing, shortness of breath, vomiting, diarrhea, and respiratory distress etc.

I know this first hand as my baby boy might be allergic to certain food. We haven’t figured out yet and haven’t done allergy testing so it’s still a speculation and I’m hoping it’s only that.

I’m a new mom and it’s been quite enthralling experience for me. From pelvis dysfunction to 24 hours labour and baby was jaundiced for a whole month and then to top it off he’s got infant eczema. It hasn’t been smooth sailing ride into motherhood. Not only I learnt to take care of a new baby, learnt to wake up at ungodly hours and soothe a screaming baby, I have learned to take care of his eczema. I’m not complaining and when I look at my baby all these problems seem trivial.

I’m just trying to share my experience to people who might stumble upon my blog someday. I’m trying to put all these information out there so that they don’t have to dive into these unknown territories like I did. I will share my other experiences in future posts.

Now let focus on the issue at hand. I’m delving into this issue today because I had quite a scare his morning. It started out as a normal day. I massaged baby to moisture his skin as a normal routine to manage his eczema (which is lot better now, thank god). I made a wheat cereal as it was going to be introduced to him for the first time. He ate without any fuss (he’s such a happy baby). After his morning feed, he was playing on the floor, rolling around the carpet while I had my breakkie. When I finished he wanted to nap so I rocked him to sleep. Within half an hour, he started to wake up and cry. Then I saw it, he had broken into hives all over his face. The hives were quite severe than last time when it happened (will do another post next time on the first experience).
I quickly got cool wet towel and wiped his face to remove any residue of allergens he may had contact with. But it spread to his neck. I took off his onesies to check and he’s broken into hives all over his body. I was so freaked out. I called my hubby and he told me to wipe with wet cloth and it will go away. It was looking more severe than before and my baby was scratching away and crying. He had red patches all over his face and body and nappy area too.

I called the GP and the lady was like there’s no appointment now. I screamed on the phone saying it’s an emergency and she told me to take her to ER.

I called my hubby and told him to rush back home so we could take baby to ER.

I filled the bath and put him in the water. I showered him with water to ensure that he had no contact with allergen. But it didn’t help. The hives look red and angry and I was stressing out trying to calm my baby. After the bath, I massaged him with steroid cream and Cetaphil cream to subside his itch.

I was dressing up the baby and my hubby arrived. By then, I’ve calmed down a bit and could think as well. I told hubby, we will just take baby to GP as it’s 5 mins away from home on the way to hospital. We went to GP and told the receptionist that it’s urgent that we see the doctor now. She looked at the baby and said let me see if I can get a nurse to look at him. As we were waiting, my baby started to talk and play with his daddy. He was smiling at people passing by.

After a while, the nurse called us in, she had a look at baby and said he seems very happy to be in any pain. I explained eveything and she checked him and then called the doc. Doc said he definitely reacted to some allergen, it might be the wheat cereal he had. He said to monitor for any changes or severity in the symptoms. He prescribed over the counter antihistamine.

I could see my baby was getting better but I was still shaken. We went to chemist and got antihistamine. As we arrived home, my baby’s hive was almost gone, he had few red patches. My hubby decided to stayed home and look after bub. I was so grateful to have him home as I was very distressed and felt drained.

We have been monitoring bub now. He is happy and his hives are gone.

This event made me ponder about food allergy. Both hubby and I have no food allergy or intolerance and there’s no history in the family. I’m left wondering where did it came from. Where I came from, food allergy is almost unheard of. I never knew that allergies like eczema and hay fever even existed until I migrated to Australia and then became a sufferer myself for past few years.

I came from a place, where you feed babies anything and everything when they start solids like lentils, meat, salt and spices. Babies are massaged with oil everyday and then sleeps soaking the sun for hours. There’s no danger of harmful uv rays. The babies dishes doesn’t have to sterlised. It’s not even washed in hot water as that’s not as easily available as it is here. People are not too fussed about personal hygiene either. I’m not saying that it’s a good thing but that is the way of life.

What I’m trying to say is that’s how we grew up. But with my baby, he was born here in Australia. We have been doing things by the book. Hubby and I are very neat people regardless of our background. I’ve to admit I’m bit obsessed with washing hands and hubby has kind of OCD ( ya I know, match made in heaven) . It’s such a irony that my baby had eczema and suspected food allergy.

We grew up playing in dirt, eating everything, never wearing sunscreen when we went out, hanging out with others kids who were bit carefree about hygiene. Regardless of all this, I never heard of anyone suffering eczema or food allergy.

So that’s made me contemplate have we gone so far with cleanliness and hygiene that our body’s immune system has weakened. We are so focused on living in a germ free environment that a tiny fleck of dust causes our body to think it is attacking our immune system. We have almost become a society living in a purified air bubble. In this modern day and age, due to limited exposure to natural environment, our body’s resistance power is very low.

So my experience yesterday taught me to expose him to natural environment more so he can build of resilience towards it. And not to be too uptight about sterile surrounding.

20140514-114026.jpg

Mother’s Day: Tribute to my mom

Today it’s Mother’s Day . I’m very excited as this is my first Mother’s Day as a mother. I’ve already bought Mother’s Day gifts for myself and a cake too as hubby is not good with these kind of social events. So he gave me his card and I went on shopping spree buying Mother’s Day pressie. Bought myself 2 beautiful charms one of which is mother’s pearl charm and another one says MUM and a nice robe. I hope hubby was taking notes so that he knows what to do next year.

I gave birth to my beautiful baby boy last year. It was the most amazing and surreal experience of my life. I know it’s a kind of cliché when woman says child birth is most amazing, significant and indescribable joy and experience of their life. I used to feel the same way but now I know better. It’s true. Being a mom changes your perspective of life. I can go on and on about this immeasurable joy, but maybe in my next post.
In this post, I want to pay tribute to my mom ( whom I call maa). As being a mom now, makes me realize how precious my maa is and how much I love her.

Needless to say, I’m on maternity leave at the moment. My daily routine is caring, spending and loving my lil bub. When he’s asleep, I do get to indulge by watching TV or surfing the internet. I was watching morning show today. There are lots of promotion and advertisement on telly for Mother’s Day. One of the network is doing makeovers for working busy mom. The mom who was getting makeover had five sons. They nominated her for a makeover as she’s been too busy looking after them that she had ignored herself. I thought that was the sweetest gift the sons could have given her to show their love. It just reminded me of how much of a supermom my maa is.

My maa had a tough life. As a child, she didn’t have a mother to look after her as she passed away when my mom was a baby. But my grandfather remarried and brought home a nasty stepmother. She didn’t cared for her. My maa used to tell us stories about how she didn’t even had food to eat. Due to these hardships, she started working at my dad’s business when she was about 12-13. That’s how they met and fell in love.
Due to being of different caste ( caste
system is big deal in countries like Nepal), they had to elope as my father’s family was not ready to accept my maa. They were kicked off from family home and stripped off from family inheritance.

My mom and dad had to start off from zero. They struggled to feed the family of six daughters. My dad started his own business and they were working 18 hours a day to put food on the table and a place to call home. They went through such hardship sacrificing their youth to raise a family and give us a better life. My elder sisters used to help out with the family business and they used to look after us too. They made sure that we got good education so they enrolled us into boarding school. Not only it is a big deal to give daughters an education, on top of it, we were sent to boarding school to get the best education. I remember we were the only 3 girls who went to this prestigious English medium school from our area. Our neighbors used to be quite jealous of that and used to fill my father’s ears saying why does he bother getting us education, once they marry they will be caring for in-laws not the parents.

My parents never waiver from their commitment to give us a better future.

My family business took off and started bringing lots of profit around the time when I was 7-8 years old. My parents were still putting all their effort into making our business grow.

My maa was juggling with looking after 6 daughters and helping out with the business. She never had time for herself. No vacations, no pampering, no me-time. Her only breaks were few family visits to temple. We did once went to India for few weeks but that was also a business visit.

Then I never understood how much it takes to just give and give and never ask for anything in return. She never complained, never made us feel how tough life she’s been living. When it was not us demanding her time, she had to care for my dad. Cooking, cleaning, caring for us and dad took all the best years of her youth.

2 years ago my dad passed away suddenly. It was very shocking tragedy for my maa. Suddenly she’s all by herself and lonely. She doesn’t know what to do with all the time she has. She’s still coming into terms with the fact that my dad is not there anymore.

I’ve invited my mom to Australia twice now. We are trying to give all her lost time and compensate for all her life long effort in raising us by taking her to all these beautiful places. She loved the beautiful beaches as she’s seen it the very first time. She was amused to see Opera house, Harbour Bridge, kangaroos and koalas. Now most of her daughters including me are living overseas. loves Great Ocean Road drive. She loved it so much that she asked me to buy her koalas and kangaroos as a souvenir. I was much happy to obliged and bought her half her suitcase full of it.

She also visited my sister in United States. She’s been to New York , Niagara Falls, Washington, D.C.

Seeing her this happy to visit all the new places gives me contentment of knowing that we are giving something back for all the love, nourishment, care and time a mother gives to her child.

I love my mom and on this Mother’s Day I thank her for my life and everything else.

20140511-115748.jpg

20140511-190702.jpg