Hmm.. a weekly challenge that is right up my street. A list of things- I love lists! A countdown list – even better. If it were not for the fact that I do not know what I will be writing about. And then creativity strikes- a countdown list of things I learned this year. I ma digressing from my usual style of listing in no order of significance. after all, this is the countdown list, but it is a LIST after all.

Ok, relax, here we start. TITLE first.


10. ‘Not normal’ is the new normal.

Being a mommy to a toddler, especially one who is worthy heir to this opinionated catty couch potato does make for let’s say – extraordinary everydays.

9. Silence is blessed … only if you can see that the baby is fast asleep and you are quiet too!

Whoever coined the term ‘calm before the storm’ definitely had a baby.

8. Never judge. Always give the benefit of doubt. And definitely do not say you hate something.

An old teacher of mine once told me this. I accepted it and I am so glad because I have seen so many people unknowingly do what they said they hate. And sometimes, knowingly. Yes, life is vengeful.  So, is it not so much simpler to think there had to be a kinder explanation for things we do not like. What if we need to do it? Like jump queues (bad but necessary with small kids), eat unhealthy (chocolate should be declared a medicine), be rude (better than turning slapping annoying people, right?).

7. Plan. Organize.

It makes things easier. Or like me , have fun making lists of stuff to organize.

6. Exercise.

Or accept that round is a shape.

5. Get a good smartphone.

The world is going mobile and it makes life so much easier even if not simpler. Plus, they come equipped with games, cameras, organizers. And the best part, you can video chat with your mom instead of a simple call. (yes, you have to get your mom one too. And teach her if she doesn’t know how to use it. GO ahead and do it. Spend time with her. The world can wait)

4. Take lots of photos. Do not undermine selfies.

Sometimes, a happy selfie brings back so many lovely memories. In a world full of stress and unhappiness, say the word ‘selfie time’ and just watch all that nastiness and hate and worry melt away. It’s like we photoshop our emotions for a while. Try it sometime. It is totally a great way to diffuse a situation. People do not rid themselves of their grouchy attitudes. But place a selfie taking happy spirit who whips out a camera for herself or himself and everybody is straightening, and smiling (however wanly) and looking perky.

3. Time is relative.

Einstein was right. So, at least do one thing you love everyday. Even if it is only for five minutes. Do it.

2. Say Hi. Say Good morning or Bonjour or Aloha, you get the drift.

Say it to your family. Do not lose touch. Family sticks to each other. In good and bad. Say it to strangers. Make friends. After all, we can choose friends not family. Besides, it is liberating, that feeling of being polite and cheerful and welcoming.

1. Love yourself.

For what you are and also, for what you can be. Trust these words , ‘I am awesome. And I can get better’.