Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Hey everyone...Riz here. We spent a LOONG time trying to get the video from Manu's 1st birthday party up on the interwebs, but YouFace wouldn't let us publish the video with the audio embedded. Unfortunately, we couldn't come up with any elegant way to do it. So even though it's quite a bit farther of a trip down memory lane than we anticipated, we've finally come up with a solution to allow everyone to see it. (I take full responsibility for the jankiness of this post.)
So here's what you do:
1) Start the video.
2) When the countdown gets to 3, click play on the Audio widget. (Thank you, Grooveshark!)
3) Enjoy! After you've watched it, leave us a comment back on the new blog:

Monday, April 19, 2010

Looking for Us?

Looking for Riz and T? We're here now!

Tuesday, April 06, 2010


In November Manu experienced his first salon hair cut. Before this time only Aunt Sameena had touched his precious locks. It took 3 adults to get the job done. He sat in Riz's lap and I distracted/bribed him with gummy bears and cookies while the stylist went to work. Here's the "before". Doesn't he look skeptical?

And here's the clean-cut "after". Personally, I prefer his hair a little on the shaggy side which is good for all of us because that experience was a bit tortuous for all involved.

Our local PBS station opened up the old set of Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood to the public (Pittsburgh being Mr. Rogers' real-life neighborhood) and of course we had to go. Manu really has no idea who Mr. Rogers is. He's pretty content with the characters on Sesame Street for the time being. I on the other hand was totally excited to get our picture in The Land of Make Believe. Someday, he'll appreciate the awesomeness of that opportunity...or not.

Riz had a couple more interviews in CT lined up for the days leading up to Thanksgiving. My sweet Aunt and Uncle generously offered their home to us for the entire week. When Riz wasn't interviewing, we spent our time scoping out New Haven and the surrounding areas considering where we might want to settle if Riz was accepted there.
Manu checking out the exhibits at Kidcity Children's Museum in Middletown.

Thanksgiving, more than any other holiday I feel, says "family". As soon as we've put away the last bite of Aziza's delicious cooking and changed into our elastic-banded sweats, I'm thinking about how much I miss them already and can't wait to do it all again next year. I love our traditions: Dinner at 4pm on Thursday, West Farms Mall on Friday (always an hour later than we planned...always), Sleighride Mochas at Gloria Jean's, and the mandatory sibling couch picture. I was so excited for Manu to be a part of it all this year; to experience the joy and liveliness of it all.

Seemed like he was pretty excited to be a part of it too.
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Saturday, April 03, 2010


In October we hit the interview trail together as a family. We limited our choices to fellowship programs in the northeast to make sure we stayed close to the grandparents, cousins, and aunts and uncles. We first headed to Connecticut for a Riz's two day interview at Yale. This also provided a great opportunity to stay and visit with family in the area. We then made our way to Rhode Island for the Brown interview and then foolishly decided to drive the 9 hours back to Pittsburgh on the same day. Crazy kids. Once we hit the NYC rush-hour traffic we knew there was no way we'd make it back before 3am. We booked a hotel somewhere in eastern Pennsylvania and decided to finish our journey in the A.M. That was rough. If I had to sing B-I-N-G-O one more time.... On a positive note, Riz can expertly clap along to the song while maintaining control of the steering wheel. The skills of a parent.

Manu with his Great Grandma in South Windsor, CT.

The fall day we spent at Reilly's Summer Seat Farm is one I hope to remember for a long, long time. It was Manu's first time at a pumpkin patch and he was such a joy to watch. We enjoyed a hayride up to the patch, munched on warm funnel cake, and picked out a little Manu-sized pumpkin to take home with us.

Aunt Aziza came to visit the weekend of Halloween this year and we wanted to show her one of our favorite places: The Children's Museum of Pittsburgh. If you're ever in the Pittsburgh area, this is a MUST do. It's such a blast! Here's Manu checking out the Air Box exhibit in the Nursery.

Later that afternoon we donned our costume and headed out for some trick-or-treating. Don't know what it is with me and feathered friends, but we followed last year's chicken with a sweet little owlet. Soon enough he'll have an opinion on what action hero he should be and where I should be buying the overpriced plastic get-up from (why are kids so opposed to homemade?), so I'm squeezing in the fuzzy homemade costumes in while I can.
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September found us in Horseheads for Jeff and Melissa's nuptials. Don't you just love wedding season? Manu and I made the trip a couple days early to spend some quality time with the family.
What better way to spend your time than playing dress-up. Medina and I raided her closets and donned the little guy in old dance costumes and party dresses. With a little accessorizing and a little protest, we created the lovely "Armana". Poor kid.

It was another gorgeous wedding. Jeff and Melissa exchanged vows at a lakeside ceremony at the camp where they first met.
We made our way back to Pittsburgh by way of Buffalo where I got to hold sweet baby Owen for the first time. Yay for new babies!
September also brought some firsts for Manu. He went from taking his first steps just weeks earlier, to fearlessly running.

He also created his first works of art, which of course we proudly framed.

Last but not least, Manu discovered the yuminess of the Whole Foods prepared foods bar. We scooped up some of their delicious mac and cheese for him, but it true Manu-style he wanted the good stuff and shamlessly devoured my entire plate of Indian food.

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At the end of August we made the looong 6 hour trek out to Brooklyn to witness our friends Jon and Maria, tie the knot. It was one of the most memorable weddings we've attended; an intimate, personal, and heartfelt affair from start to finish. Free of cliched vows and dyed to match satin, all the elements of the day truly reflected and celebrated the couple and their commitment to each other.

The bride and her mom make their way through Prospect Park. How gorgeous are they?! Now that's a Mother of the Bride dress. No frumpy- dumpy here. At the reception she dedicated a tango to the newlyweds. How brilliant!

The exchange of rings

The vows.

August 27th marked our 11 year dating anniversary. The hubby surprised me with a Le Creuset grill pan in "Dijon". I had my eye on the baby for months and was so pysched (do people still say that?) that Riz snatched one up for me. It's one of those items you know you'll use but would never buy for yourself. Now only if I had an extra grand lying around, I could finish off the collection.

Manu presents Mommy with her new grill pan. And yes, he's sporting a pony tail.

This pic is one of my favorites from the entire summer. It's not great technically, but I love the feel of it. My little/not so little boy. I wonder what caught his attention. A passing car? A barking dog? Is he sensing the transition from summer to fall? Or marveling at how much world there is to explore? Maybe like his momma he's wondering how he got so big so fast.

Thursday, April 01, 2010

And We're Back!

Yep! After a lengthy 9 month hiatus, I'm ready to blog again. Why gone so long? No time? Nah. We all have time for the things we want to make time for. Truth is, blogging was feeling like a real chore and goodness knows I have enough of those. It simply wasn't fun anymore, so I dropped it. I wasn't sure I was ever going to pick it up again but I have to say, it feels really great to be back.

So what changed? I'm not so sure. Maybe it's this gorgeous spring weather that's rejuvenated me. Maybe it's because overnight, Arman turned into a hilarious little man who can now count to twelve and has strong opinions on what should be served at snack time and I don't want to forget a moment (well, most moments anyway) of it. Maybe it's because our family has gone through a whirlwind of major life changes in the past nine months and I'm desperate to document and share the on-going drama that is our life. I dunno, but today feels like the right day.

Whatever the reasons, I'm back with renewed energy and excitement about this blog. I have some ideas brewing for future posts that I'm really looking forward to getting started on. It's going to be great! Before we dive in though, a recap of the past nine months is in order and boy has it been a crazy time. Weddings, an engagement, moving and moving again, our growing family, holidays, babies, the interview trail, Ivy League, and growing up. We begin in August...
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Sunday, August 02, 2009

Front Page

As many of you know, I'm currently enrolled in Palm's Real Reviewers Program. As part of that program, I've been hooked up with a Palm Pre and service through Sprint. In return, they ask that I comment from time to time on how I'm using the device. Well, one of my review posts has been picked up by Pre|Central and posted on the front page!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Another Day, Another Dinner

Clipped this winner from Country Living (which is surprisingly quite fresh and modern) several years back and finally tried it out last night. The hubby and I both give it 2 thumbs up. Make sure you treat yourself to some good quality swiss. Makes all the difference!