2018 Secondary 2 Week 2 Update

The school life is in full swing for BB & GG. They have homework everyday and I see them spending more time doing schoolwork than before.

GG is planning to stand for elections in her CCA to become an executive committee member. They have already started working with the current leaders. I really hope she gets what she wants. She is also finding this year a bit more stressful, but she is a trooper and has a will not give up attitude which I really admire.

As for BB, he is enjoying school, but since he is in the so called best class this year, the stress of doing well is there.

It’s early days still with the first common tests coming up in a couple of weeks time. I guess we’ll know for sure how well the children have adapted to secondary 3 then.


In My Hands Today…

Her Royal Spyness – Rhys Bowen

383514London 1932. Narrator Lady Victoria Georgiana Charlotte Eugenie, 34th in line for the throne, is flat broke. She bolted from Scotland — and engagement to Fishface (Prince Stiegfriend) — for London, where she has:

a) built a fire in the hearth
b) fallen for an absolutely unsuitable Irish peer
c) made a few quid housekeeping incognita, and
d) been summoned by the Queen to spy on her playboy son

When an arrogant Frenchman trying to swipe her family estate winds up dead in her bathtub, how can she clear her very long family name?

Looking back…..and Facing forward….


As we start the first week of 2018, let me do a short recap of my year that was in 2017 as well as some ideas on how I want this year to work out for me.


2017 started as usual for me, with looking for a job which didn’t materialise until the middle of the year. But what a position it turned out to be! I was bullied in my second week there by a subordinate and that’s when I knew I had to get out. I started looking for positions immediately, but before I could leave, I was asked to leave. I hated it there and so when the shock of having this thrust on me abated, I was really relieved. I attribute this 100% to my manager, who approved decisions I took, but turned around and lied about those decisions, even though it was approved by email! This person is a very strong-willed person with a personality to match and when confronted, I didn’t push back, which was, in retrospect, something I am not very proud of. Anyway, karma worked and what this person did to me was done to them in less than two months time!

The children had good school years. GG did especially well and she managed to move to the better stream (after we managed to convince her school principal that she can do it). She now gets to do the subjects she enjoys and excels in and hopefully will continue to thrive in school. BB, on the other hand, managed to squeeze into his stream of choice by a whisker. I was mentally prepared that he will not get into the pure science stream as his science marks just about made the cut-off marks for the stream and was already psyching him for other science-related subjects, but when the streaming results were declared, both of us did a little jig on seeing his name in the pure science class.


That was 2017, what do I want to do in 2018?


For one, I want to lose 10% of my total body weight as on 01 January. I have checked my weight on Monday (and I am conscious enough of it that I don’t want to reveal it to the whole internet), and will be tracking it with an eagle’s eye!

Continuing on the health theme, my last HbA1C reading put me in the upper end of the acceptable range and I want to bring this down to the lower end and in the healthy range by the end of the year. I have my next test in February, just after the Chinese New Year and so want to have some positive news there.

Other health and beauty related resolutions are to meditate daily for at least 10 minutes, put on a face mask every day for 365 days and clock an average of 10,000 steps daily. These should be fairly doable I think, I just need to be consistent and not give in to laziness and complacency.

I also want to write more this year, both in this blog and elsewhere. I dream of being a published author and want to take steps to achieve this by perhaps submitting a short story. I am going to work on this dream too this year.

On the job front, I am going to be super discerning about where I apply jobs to and even after I interview, I will not accept any position just because I get offered one. I don’t want a repetition of what happened in 2017, so I rather am safe than sorry.

I also want to travel and we’ve already started planning our year-end holiday where I want to explore parts of India I’ve never been to. I also want to do a solo trip, but I am not sure if this will pan out this year, but it’s something I am putting here, in the hope that the universe will let it happen.

So that’s what my plans for 2018 are. What about you? Have you made any plans? Or are you someone who wings it? Do comment below and I’d love to hear from you.

Recipes: No Onion, No Garlic Mixed Vegetable Rice

This is my take on a super easy my mum makes for my dad. My mum makes this very often at home and so I decided to tweak it a bit. I made it as a no onion, no garlic recipe, but feel free to add both to your version.

No Onion, No Garlic Mixed Vegetable Rice


  • 1 cup cooked basmati rice
  • 1 carrot, chopped
  • 1 potato, chopped
  • 1/2 head cauliflower, chopped
  • 1/2 cup green peas
  • 1/2 cup chopped spinach
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 inch piece ginger, julienned
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp carom seeds
  • 1 tsp chilli powder
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp dry mango powder
  • 1.5 tsp biryani/pulao masala
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 tsp oil


  • Wash all the vegetables and keep aside
  • Cool the cooked rice and fluff it in a plate and keep aside
  • Heat a large pan and add the oil
  • When the oil heats up, put in the cumin seeds and let them pop. Then add the carom seeds and let that pop too.
  • Now add the ginger and let it fry for a few seconds before adding in the bell pepper.
  • Then add the turmeric, chilli, coriander and cumin powder and stir for a second
  • Now add all the vegetables (except for the spinach) and sauté well.
  • Cover and cook until the vegetables are almost done.
  • At this point, add the spinach, salt, mango powder, biryani/pulao masala and cook till the spinach wilts and the spices are well incorporated
  • Now add the cooled and fluffed rice and mix well, so the rice and vegetables are mixed thoroughly
  • Check for seasoning and serve with a raita of your choice


  • You can serve the recipe at the point before adding the rice as a sabzi which goes very well with Indian breads
  • If you want to add onions and/or garlic, add them at the point when you put the ginger in the oil

Secondary 2 Week 45 Update

Last week I was super frustrated that GG’s school did not confirm her subject combination. On Monday we went to both schools to buy uniforms and books, but again I could not speak to the teacher who was handling this issue since they were all out. She later called me and asked me to wait till Thursday since they were doing the appeals for the cohort. I waited and waited for her to call me and then when I called her on Friday it was to know that GG had to go to school that day! We didn’t know about this, but the news was good – GG got the subject combination she wanted! So she will be doing English, Mother Tongue, E Maths, Combined Science, Pure History, Social Studies with Geography, Principles of Accounts (7 subjects in total). We should go tomorrow to school to confirm these subjects and finally buy the books!

Have a lovely Sunday folks!