Chana curry (Chick peas curry)

Chana” means chickpeas in Nepali. It is one of the easiest, healthiest and tastiest recipes that I loved to make occasionally. It goes well with rice or roti.

Ingredients

  • 500gm cooked chickpeas can
  • 1 large onion thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 Large tomato diced (I used 250 gm diced from a can)
  • 1 table spoon of garlic and ginger paste
  • A few bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 2 teaspoons cumin powder
  • 2 teaspoons coriander powder
  • 2 teaspoons chilli powder
  • ½ cup of chicken stock (use water if you don’t have stock)
  • Salt to taste
  • Fresh coriander to garnish

 Method

  • In a wok, heat the oil; add turmeric powder and bay leaves.

Aloo dum (2)

  • Add the sliced onions and fry for 15 minutes or until golden brown, stirring regularly.

Aloo dum (3)

  • Add all the other spices, garlic ginger paste and fry some more.
  • Once onion is cooked, pour diced tomato and let it cook for 5 minutes stirring occasionally.

chu la (1)

  • Mix well and add the chickpeas and fry for few minutes.
  • Add the chicken stock and Bring to a boil then reduce the heat, cover and simmer for 5 minutes, or until most of the stock dries out.

chana (1)

  • Garnish the chick peas with fresh coriander.

chana (2)

  • Delicious curry is ready and it can be served with rice or roti.
  • Enjoy!!!

Take care,

M from nepaliaustralian

XOXO

P.S: Do not forget to vote your favorite blog . NEPALIAUSTRALIAN’s Blog Award 2014

What is the purpose of my life?

This article was published in +977 (a Nepalese Lifestyle Magazine in Australia) in  Nov/Dec 2014 issue.

977 Purpose of my life

When I was young, I believed that we were all sent to earth for a reason and that we all have significance in the world. I also believed that I would find my true purpose one day but as I grow older, I am not too sure how to find the purpose of my life.

I am sure when we were created, we were not meant to be just be born, grow up, get married, reproduce and simply die. There must be a higher purpose in life for all human beings making us different from animals. However, at the same time, living every day for so long, I haven’t discovered my purpose. Does such a thing really exist? Why don’t I know my purpose in life yet?

Like many of you, my day starts with waking up early in the morning, getting ready to go to work, breakfast , work whole day, back home, cook dinner, eat , go back to bed and the next morning the whole cycle starts all over again. Weekends are spent cleaning the house, grocery shopping, sorting the bills and fulfilling the social aspect of our life. In fact, nothing much has changed since I was a baby and looks like nothing much will change until my last day in life.

My life is so ordinary and boring if I stand back and look at it. It’s not that I don’t have fun in life, I do. I manage to take holidays, meet new people, explore beautiful places, enjoy new foods and explore the unknown but these are things everyone is doing and everyone can do. Therefore, I feel I lack a specific purpose in life.

I know I am grateful that I am healthy and happy in my simple life. Life could be worse if you don’t have your health by your side but I am sure life is not meant to be just this. Every time I read about achievers, people who excel in sports, science, music, acting or any other field, I feel lost because I know I am not one of those brilliant human beings, I am just another ordinary person.

It makes me sad to think one day when I die, I will not leave behind anything that people will remember me by.

I am sure there are many self-help gurus and books that say they can help to guide us but how easy is it really to find the purpose in life.

Gautama Buddha said “Your purpose in life is to find your purpose and give your whole heart and soul to it” and that is exactly what I am searching for. I am not too sure how long it takes but hopefully one day I will know the answer and from that day I will dedicate my life to my purpose but until that day comes I have decided to be satisfied with what I have.

It is possible that I might die without knowing the purpose of my life so I have to live every day as if it can be the last day. Until my purpose catches up with me, I have decided to be happy because if I am happy, then I can make others happy.

I am definitely thankful for what I have, my health, my family and my ordinary life without problems. Happiness doesn’t require me to know the purpose of my life. Just appreciating what I have, being content doing the right thing and thanking everyone who made my life better will make me happy and thus everyone around me.

Even though I may not be the extra ordinary human being, I want to be, I could be ordinary one with happiness surrounding me every day and it will be the purpose of my life until I find another one.

Reaction of our pregnancy news

We decided the first people who needed to know about our pregnancy were our family so we picked a day and decided to tell them.

We call AS’s home as normal and during the conversation, he dropped the news that we are having a baby. They were happy for us and themselves as it was going to be their first grandchild. We also told his brothers about it. Everything went smoothly as planned. They just asked how far along I was and if everything was fine with me.

It was with my parents, the news didn’t go as we planned. We were in the middle of the conversation when I told my parents.

Me: “Mum, now start packing your bags to come here as I am pregnant so you will have to come and look after me.”

Mum: “Hahahaha, (laughing hard) Stop joking about it and have a baby soon. It is about time.” (My dad was laughing now as well.)

I need to tell you why mum thought I was joking. I always wanted my parent to visit us but they keep on postponing and it was been a while since they have been to Sydney. They have always told me to have a baby so they can come here. I always keep telling them I will, soon and that soon has been dragging on for more than 3 years now. I have never joked about being pregnant before but I always told them that we need to have a contract drafted so they can’t back out from coming to Sydney once I am really pregnant. I have a very close relationship with my parents so I always joke about anything and everything.

pregnancy

Anyway coming back to the day, the conversation continued as below.

Me: “I am serious mum, I am pregnant and it is around 10 weeks now. I even went for a scan already.”

Mum: “Stop making fun about pregnancy.” (Still laughing)

At this stage AS decided that my parents thought we were still joking so jumped in.

AS: “Yap, M is not joking, we are having a baby and so far things are going great.”

Finally, they stopped laughing and finally got the idea that I was not joking at all.

Mum: “Ohoo that is great news, I really thought you were joking. How are you feeling?” (Add millions of question after that.)

Yap, that is how we told our parents.

After that we called my brother and told him. Everyone was very happy for us.

We waited another 2 weeks before telling our friends and at work.

I called all my close friends and family and told them the good news. Everyone was very happy about it and it was one of the most amazing conversations I had with everyone.

When we were planning for a baby, there were a few friends around us who were also trying for a baby around the same time or long before us. It was a bit hard for me to tell them because I knew they want the same news too. However, to my surprise, they were very happy for us and there was no discomfort at all. All I want now is for them to be blessed the with same good news soon.

my pregnancyAfter, I passed week 12; I also told my boss at work and my colleagues and AS did the same. Everyone was very happy for us and after that, they are making sure that I am all right. All the mums and dads are always telling me what to expect and how things are going to be.

Finally, it was a great relief to be able to talk about the pregnancy and baby with everyone. It was just amazing how one pregnancy can bring so much happiness and joy not just to the new parents-to- be but everyone around them. Instantly, I have a big support network.

I am eagerly looking forward to our baby and I know it is going to be one of the most exciting and memorable days for us.

I will be writing about my pregnancy journey in the coming days. Also hoping to get all the tips and tricks that you used with your pregnancy and kids to help me and keep me sane :).

M from nepaliaustralian

XOXO

P.S: Do not forget to vote your favorite blog . NEPALIAUSTRALIAN’s Blog Award 2014

Prisoner of darkness

This article was published in +977 (a Nepalese Lifestyle Magazine in Australia) in  Nov/Dec 2014 issue.

977 prisoner of the darkness

When I opened my eyes, it was dark and I was in a bedroom but not in my own bedroom. I couldn’t keep my eyes open because there was light coming from the side of the blinds. It was not much light but for some reason my eyes seemed not to like any light at all.

I felt nausea and my head was spinning. I felt weak and I couldn’t move my body. I didn’t know what had happened so I screamed and even my scream was weak.

Suddenly a man came running to the room and asked,” Are you OK?”. For a second I couldn’t recognised the man but as he came closer I could see his face. It was my husband. Once he came closer, all I did was hug him and cry.

After I calmed down and gained my composure, I remembered what was happening. My headache was getting worse but I was not panicking as I was sleeping in our guest room. I was not in the main bedroom as it was too bright and my husband thought I would sleep better in a dark room.

The day before I came home early from work because I had a very bad headache and I couldn’t stand to look at the computer screen. When I closed my eyes for a while, I felt better but when I opened them again, the headache was back. I work on a computer so there was no point in staying at work any longer.

I went straight home. It was getting difficult to drive but somehow I managed and reached home. I took two Panadols and went straight to bed and slept. After 3 hours when I woke up, my headache had worsened. I felt like my head was going to explode so I decided to go to my local GP. I had to wait for 30 minutes before I could see him and it was the longest 30 minutes of my life.

Finally, I told the GP what had happened and expected him to perform a miracle so that my gruesome headache would disappear. Over the years, I have had lots of headaches but this one was supersized compare to what I had before.

The GP told me that I have a severe case of migraine and the best solution is to take medication and sleep. Following his advice, I took the medicine he prescribed and went to bed. By the time my husband came home, I was so sick that I was crying.

He looked after me for the rest of the evening and I was glad it was night, as I didn’t have to worry about the light. And I was hoping the next morning when I wake up, there would be no headache and I would be able to go to work as normal.

But to my dismay, I work up with a stronger headache and I couldn’t open my eyes again. My husband had to take time off from work to look after me as I was not able to get out of the bed. When we talked to GP regarding about my condition, all he could suggest is to keep taking medicine and rest like the day before.

Even with a whole day in bed, I was nowhere near better. I couldn’t open my eyes long enough to talk to my husband or watch TV or do anything else. All I could do was lie on the bed and wish I was doing something more productive.

The next morning I was more hopeful and was so happy when there was no headache when I woke up. Hubby had to go to work so I was contemplating if I should go to work as well or just rest.

However, it took only 10 minutes for my headache to answer all my questions. Even though the headache was not as bad as the previous days and I was not in severe pain, I couldn’t think straight and for sure was going to be useless for the rest of the day again.

Whenever I could and my eye permitted, I Googled many times to find a cure for my migraine but my effort was in vain, as everyone suggested staying in a dark room with eyes closed and it would be all good. My question was how long I could stay indoors like that.

Being a very active person, it was impossible for my mind to shut down but my body needed the rest.

One of the websites suggested lying down and putting an ice pack or cold compress on my head and it did help with the pain but it was just reducing the pain, not curing it and I really was looking for cure.

Even though I tried my best, I couldn’t sleep the whole day and I was very glad when hubby was home after work. At least when he is around me I have someone to talk to.

It took full 6 days to get rid of the headache. It was not sever most of the time but I was constantly in pain. First time, in my life I felt the severe pain and realised how worst pain can go. I am praying that it will never happen again and I will never want to be prisoner of darkness again.

The day I found out we are having a BABY

I really don’t know how to start this post. For the first time in my life, I am wordless. I want to write so much but I can’t seem to find the right words. I know I will not publish this post for a while but I thought I would write this now so I can share the emotional ups and downs about the day when I found out we were having a baby.

I am pregrant (2)

As I shared in my last post, we are having a baby; a new life is growing inside me right now. Thank you to everyone who left such sweet and thoughtful comments on my last post. We are over the moon about the baby and I cannot wait to share our journey with all of you! I was so touched by so many of you who told me that being a mom is the most incredible feeling in the world.

Even though I and my husband have talked about babies in the past, we really became serious about it only this year. Early this year, we went to our GP and told him about our plan to have a baby so he could do any necessary checks for me to be a mum.

The GP suggested me to take prenatal vitamins and gave me a rubella vaccination as it showed in my blood test that I have low or insufficient immunity to the rubella virus. I highly recommend everyone who is planning to do that as the blood test lets your GP know how ready your body is and he/she can help you get it to 100% if it is not.

We were not thinking to have a baby straight away but in 2015. After that we went on holiday to Nepal and came back and did a second blood test. I had a second vaccination for rubella as the blood test was still showing that that I have low or insufficient immunity to the rubella virus.

I started getting worried at that point but the GP told us it is normal. The next blood test showed that everything was normal and after that time we were officially trying and I had been on prenatal vitamin for a few months already.

At this point of time, I started reading a bit about pregnancy and other stuff online. I found the information overwhelming at times and very useful at others. I tried to ignore all the negative stuff I found, as I knew that not everyone is the same and I can have a completely different experience than other mothers out there.

After cramming so much information into my mind about the pregnancy, I was much more aware of the physical signs that your body is pregnant. However, I was in complete denial when I stared seeing signs of pregnancy within a few weeks. As we were just talking about babies only a few weeks ago and it was less than a month from when we said we were ready to have a baby of our own. We decided the time was right then because everyone was telling us that it will take a while before one falls pregnant and here my body was telling me that I might already be pregnant in just a few weeks.

pregnancy

No matter how much I was ignored the signs I could not stop the visits to loo or my strong sense of smell. Every time I found another sign, I googled it and it would confirm them to be the signs of pregnancy.

However, I didn’t want to talk about it to anyone including AS just in case it was a false alarm and waited for my next period. I told myself if I missed the period by even a few days, I would talk to AS. I briefly entertained the idea that I might already be pregnant but then rubbished it as it was too soon and my mind could be playing tricks on me.

The following weekend I went shopping with hubby. I was trying on a few dresses and showing AS if he liked them on me. Normally I wear tight dresses and when I was trying one of them, he told me I look like I was pregnant. The dress I was trying showed my more rounded belly and he said my face I seemed to be glowing too.

At that point, I told AS that I suspected that I might be pregnant for the last few weeks as I had some symptoms but wanted to wait until my next period. I could see his happy face and expression but I told me it might be false alarm so not to hold on to the thought too much. He suggested that we should go to doctor but I told him to wait until next week when I was supposed to have my period.

He agreed and that week went so slowly and both of us were googling all the symptoms I had. I have to admit I had all the symptoms but my mind was not ready to accept the idea that I was already pregnant and definitely needed a confirmation.

It was no surprise when I did not have my period on time and AS suggested that it was high time we go to GP but I stalled him another week saying sometimes it can be late so we better be sure. He even suggested we should get a home pregnancy test to confirm but I didn’t want to as I read that they are not 100% correct. I knew I was putting it off as long as possible because I was mentally preparing myself to be a mum in the next 9 months. Eventually we went to the GP and had a blood test done.

It was Saturday afternoon and I told the GP we wanted to know the result ASAP. He gave us the number for the clinic and asked to call them later that evening if I can’t wait till Monday for the result.

Those 6-8 hours were the longest in our life as we waited for the result. In both our minds, we were sure I was pregnant but at the same time, we were scared to celebrate it until it was 100% and did not want to get disappointed if it was a false alarm.

We talked about what we could do if it was positive and we could not wipe the smile from our faces. At the same time we said if it is negative, it is not a big deal as we could try again. AS is such a big support in my life that I know, I could go through anything with him by my side and I was so happy that we were going to have our own family one day if not in the next 9 months.

my pregnancy

We decided to stay home and do basically nothing until we could call the clinic. Finally, the time came and I called them. I asked about the result and the lady gave me some number in my blood. I had no clue what she was saying so I asked again holding AS’s hand.

Me: “What does that mean, it was a pregnancy test right?”

Lady: “Yes , it is pregnancy test. It means the numbers are higher than normal and you are PREGNANT.”

Me: “Ohoo really?

Lady: “Yes, you are around 4-5 weeks pregnant now.

I thanked the lady and just hugged AS for the next few minutes. We both were out of words but extremely happy that we were going to be a DAD and a MUM.

This is the story of how we found out. We feel incredibly fortunate for this amazing blessing and could not be happier.

Please share your story with me on how you found out you were pregnant. It will be nice to read how your happiness started.

Take care, everyone and more pregnancy stories coming soon.

M from nepaliaustralian

XOXO

P.S: Do not forget to vote your favorite blog . NEPALIAUSTRALIAN’s Blog Award 2014

When is the right time to announce your pregnancy?

First of all, thank you everyone for all your lovely messages and comments.It means so much to us.

When we found out that we were having a baby, we were both so happy that we wanted to let the whole world know about the good news straight away. After all, there is nothing more magical than the news of a baby. But at the same time we were confused about what to do next. We knew that we needed to tell our parents and family first but we were not sure when the right time was.

I am pregrant (2)

I have read a lot about it and everyone seems to say the incidence of miscarriage for first babies is high and recommend announcing the pregnancy only after you pass that 12 week mark when the chances of miscarriage are smaller. But I was not sure if we could wait so long before we told our parents and close friends.

Don’t get me wrong. There is no shame in miscarriage. There is absolutely nothing wrong in saying to someone, “I lost my pregnancy”. The issue, of course, is that it can be excruciatingly painful. I definitely did not want our parents to go through a painful process if anything were to go wrong.

After the first blood test, the GP asked us to do another blood test few weeks later to confirm that the pregnancy was going well so we both decided that we would wait for the result. At 6 weeks, I went for the blood test again. It came back positive as well and with good progress. The GP told us that everything is going really well so far but he wanted us to have an 8-week scan to find out the due date as well as how the baby was going.

We thought that sounded like a great idea and decided to wait until the scan to tell anyone.

Luckily, I didn’t have any early pregnancy symptoms like morning sickness to give things away. I was going to work as normal. However, I had increased appetite and I was more tired than normal.

Before we told anyone, it was AS’s and my big secret and we could not stop talking about it. That was the only conversation we had at home. AS was so sweet during the period (actually he always is :) ) and was checking in with me while I was at work just to make sure everything was OK.pregnancy

I didn’t have a visible bump yet, but I had a small round bump which was visible when I removed my clothes. I was feeling pretty exhausted at times and needed to rest a lot more than usual.

Then came the 8 week scan and it was one of the most exciting days of our life. We both took time off from work and went to the clinic. Seriously, during the scan, we couldn’t see much. It was like a round sac with heartbeat, which was moving constantly, but it was such a great pleasure to get to see the baby for the first time.

The baby was around two centimeters long only but there was a distinctive heartbeat. Both of us were very emotional during and after the scan. It was all becoming real at that moment and it was an amazing feeling.

After the scan, we came home and talked more about the baby developing day by day inside my tummy.

my pregnancy

I will write about how we told our friends and family in my next post. Till then take care.

M from nepaliaustralian

XOXO

P.S: Do not forget to vote your favorite blog . NEPALIAUSTRALIAN’s Blog Award 2014

Our Story : Next Chapter (The big announcement) – Part 51

This is a continuation of my previous posts. Please read the previous posts here.

This is the last part for my “Our Story” posts. Thank you everyone for reading and commenting on them. You guys have been so kind and that is the only reason I was able to continue the post until the end.

I am glad I was able to share a part of my life with you. Initially when I started to write it, I didn’t realise that it would take me almost a year but now I can finally say that I am done.

We are now entering the next chapter of our life and have some good news to share.

We are expecting a baby!!!

I am pregrant (2)

Yap, you read it right, AS and I are expecting a baby in Autumn 2015.

I can nearly smell the soft, sweet skin and feel the weight of a gushy baby in my arms already. I get emotional when I think about it. So far, I have been lucky and have had an easy pregnancy. No morning sickness, no major problems and no complication, touch wood.

I do have normal pregnancy symptoms like being tired, swollen feet if I have walked a lot or cramps at nights. However, I have accepted these symptoms as part of being a pregnant woman so not too much complaining.

I started feeling little kicks about a few weeks ago and I am so excited! It is such a magnificent privilege that we are entering the next phase of our life.

I cannot believe how many nice messages we have received since my husband and I made the big announcement that we are expecting a child. This is how we told the world :)

I am pregrant (1)

It feels so good to finally share what has been going on in my life. I have many questions about being a mother. I have no idea what I am getting myself into all I know is that I am thrilled and excited about it all.

my pregnancy

I would be sharing my pregnancy journey (happiness, job, fear, worries) with all of you from now onwards and I figured I could canvass all you experienced ones for pregnancy and parenting advice too. Wish us luck.

Take care,

M from nepaliaustralian

XOXO

P.S: Do not forget to vote your favorite blog . NEPALIAUSTRALIAN’s Blog Award 2014