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August 28, 2013

I was “forced” to get on another plane this week…and it’s all Maya’s fault.

It all started with me trying to sign Maya up for another week of camp online, only to read that there were no more weeks of camp to sign up for. I couldn’t believe my eyes.

So I called the camp director to confirm.

Dinner at Prezzo, London, A 25k pound children's car at Selfridge's (no joke), and Tea at The Wolseley in London.

Dinner at Prezzo, London, A 25k pound children’s car at Selfridge’s (no joke), and Tea at The Wolseley in London.

Camp Director: “There is no error on our website. Camp ends August 30th.”

Me: “But that leaves 9 days until school starts. How am I supposed to entertain a high-energy 8-year-old for 9 whole days?”

I was almost shaking with fear. You may think I’m being dramatic, but picture this:

  • A kid, who normally must be occupied every second, with nothing to do and nowhere to go.
  • Two working parents.
  • A new city where we have no family and few friends.
  • My controlling self who cannot find it in herself to trust and thus hire a babysitter to watch Maya. (Despite the fact they’re likely more qualified than me to do so.)
The Eiffel, The Arc, The Din's.

The Eiffel, The Arc, The Din’s (Apostrophe here? Or no apostrophe?).

I’m sure you’ll agree that I was caught between a rock and a hard place.

So we did the only thing we could do: we ran off to London so Maya’s grandparents could watch her while Ali and I worked remotely.

And then, because we aren’t neglectful and selfish enough, Ali and I decided to leave Maya with her grandparents for a few days, so we could visit Paris.

photo 3

We want to feel terrible, truly we do. And we will.

Right after I finish my Pain au Chocolat and Ali has another latte.

100 Comments leave one →
  1. August 28, 2013 12:11 am

    Wish I could do what you did!! But then I have have purvi with me at all times. Maybe itS because I am more controlling than you are

    • August 28, 2013 1:37 pm

      I didn’t think anyone could be more controlling than me…but hats off to you for being an even better mom! 🙂

  2. August 28, 2013 12:33 am

    You make me laugh so much (in a good way!) The last line had me in stitches. Enjoy Paris and don’t feel guilty (I’m v. jealous!)

    • August 28, 2013 1:37 pm

      So glad I could make you laugh, and thanks for the kind words Amanda! 🙂

  3. August 28, 2013 1:07 am

    Iam with you here Mrs.Din–Iam also not selsfish when it comes to leaving the boys with their grandparents.
    xoxo have fun

    • August 28, 2013 1:37 pm

      Kids LOVE their grandparents…I’m thinking we should stop feeling guilty this!

  4. August 28, 2013 1:12 am

    Feeling terrible? From visiting two of the best cities in the world? Hah! DON’T BE !

    Ah! Paris in the summer! The locals are away and the streets are quiet … love it !

    • August 28, 2013 1:38 pm

      August is really quiet…this is our first time here so late in the summer. It’s really nice, although a lot of places are randomly closed…

      • August 28, 2013 11:47 pm

        Some places (I’ve not learned too) have a habit of taking a few weeks break in the summer. I wasn’t here last summer to experience it but this summer, most of my fave bars/restaurants were closed.

        So when friends are in town, I’m all ‘um, I DO KNOW awesome places to go, guys. They’re just NOT OPEN right now’. You can imagine……

  5. August 28, 2013 2:18 am

    I feel terrible every time I leave Hriday with his Nani- but then somehow he seems to look forward to it too (i.e being away from me-his words!) . Although leaving behind Hriday and visiting Paris is a huge no no- the kid is fascinated by all things Paris! Hope you had a fantastic time in London and Paris.

    • August 28, 2013 1:39 pm

      Maya loves Paris too…isn’t it interesting how our kids know about things we didn’t know at their age?

      But yes, Maya loves being with her grandparents too…her words as well!

  6. August 28, 2013 3:42 am

    I love the pic caption: “The Eiffel, The Arc, The Din’s” 🙂 And don’t feel terrible; that word has no place in the same sentence as “London” and “Paris!”

    • August 28, 2013 1:39 pm

      Such a good point Habiba.

      Thank you for the comment. 🙂

  7. August 28, 2013 5:55 am

    It sounds like you two needed a little vacation! Also, I’m supremely jealous that you’re in Paris because I’ve never been!

    • August 28, 2013 1:39 pm

      I hope you get to Paris Liz..and if you need suggestions you know where to turn. 🙂

  8. August 28, 2013 6:36 am

    Oh how I wish I was enjoying a croissant with you!!

  9. Lydia permalink
    August 28, 2013 6:52 am

    Hahaha… I love it! And I’m a little jealous here, wish I could be in Paris right now myself! Enjoy London & Paris and you look great!

    • August 28, 2013 1:40 pm

      Thank you Lydia! We are having a great time so far.

  10. August 28, 2013 6:53 am

    You are too funny, Ameena! I say if you’re able to do it…Do It!! I’m sure Maya’s grandparents are thrilled to have some spur of the moment time with her. Think of it as allowing her to soak in culture while she’s able. She’s lucky to have You and Ali as parents regardless of what you say! Enjoy Paris!!

    • August 28, 2013 1:40 pm

      You are unbelievably sweet Fran, thank you for your confidence in our parenting abilities. So nice of you to leave this comment!

  11. August 28, 2013 7:20 am

    I think Maya deserves a nice big gift from Paris..:)

    • August 28, 2013 1:41 pm

      I bought her some chocolate in the shape of little Eiffel Towers. Hopefully that’ll help me redeem myself?

  12. August 28, 2013 7:25 am

    Yup, that sounds like Maya’s fault to me; 100%. Plus, she needed good time with her grandparents before school starts, right? I’d say no apostrophe.

    • August 28, 2013 1:41 pm

      No apostrophe? Good to know.

      Apostrophe’s always cause me so much confusion…

  13. August 28, 2013 8:28 am

    I never feel guilt leaving the children with their grandparents. Everyone loves it. 🙂 (yay Paris!)

    • August 28, 2013 1:42 pm

      Glad to know that I’m not the only one Allison! 🙂

  14. August 28, 2013 8:43 am

    I don’t have a kid yet but thats something I would totally do 😛

    • August 28, 2013 1:42 pm

      I hope your parents and in-laws live close by Dixya. Proximity is unbelievably helpful when you have kids. 🙂

  15. August 28, 2013 9:27 am

    Well you did the right thing 😉 Enjoyed the whole post…. Love the food 😉 And you are gorgeous 😉

  16. August 28, 2013 9:37 am

    My parents recently went to England to visit my brother and then on to Paris, and I am envious.

    When my husband and I moved to Arizona, we had no family or friends in the state. Like you, we could never bring ourselves to hire a babysitter, so we didn’t go out for years.

    Paris was worth the guilt, I bet.

    • August 28, 2013 1:43 pm

      I fear we are not going to go out for years! Or at least not without Maya. We took her to Tao last week.

      Not quite the same experience, you know?

      Thanks for the comment Hillary. 🙂

  17. August 28, 2013 10:00 am

    aah – and just like that you can drop her off and go to Paris! I can’t wait to do that – have 6 yrs to go before my son is as old and I need my in-laws to move to the UK. I could travel so much of Europe..
    So many of us are soo envious of you Ameena! Have fun while in Paris!

    • August 28, 2013 1:44 pm

      Having my in-laws in the UK is great…totally allows for easy travel now!

      Thank you for the great comment Archana…really appreciate you reading. 🙂

  18. August 28, 2013 11:02 am

    Wow, you really live it up! If you can, why not? At Maya’s age, I would have rather stayed at my grandparents than drink lattes. Have fun 🙂

    • August 28, 2013 1:45 pm

      Thank you for the comment Amelia – I have a feeling Maya would also prefer staying with her grandparents than watching Ali feed his latte habit. 🙂

  19. August 28, 2013 11:05 am

    lol you look like you’re feeling just awful 😉 what a nice way to be forced on a plane though!

  20. glamorous glutton permalink
    August 28, 2013 2:09 pm

    I’m sure Maya had a great time and, after all, every parent needs a break!! I love The Wolsey, one of my favourites. GG

    • August 29, 2013 3:17 pm

      One of your favorites too? And you are a UK expert…glad you like it as well!

  21. Farah permalink
    August 28, 2013 3:15 pm

    Grandparents are the best! And the best way to feel awful, I cant wait to feel awful once I’m back in the states 🙂

    • August 29, 2013 3:17 pm

      So funny Farah. I hope you feel especially terrible when you are back in the US!

  22. August 28, 2013 6:07 pm

    Just discovered this wonderful and funny blog! You and your hubby sound just like us. I can’t seem to figure out why my daughters school doesn’t start until another week and why there is no more summer camp! Love that you guys all took off for Europe. Gotta love those grandparents. xx Naina

    • August 29, 2013 3:18 pm

      Thank you for the comment and for reading Naina!

      And that one week off between camp and school? Continues to mystify me….

  23. August 28, 2013 6:45 pm

    A brilliant solution. I assume Maya didn’t puke on the plane either (no mention), so three cheers there. And an Amen for the modern age of Remote Work. Way better than being tethered to a cube or what not.

    • August 29, 2013 3:18 pm

      She didn’t throw up! It was touch and go, especially close to landing but she held it together. I was SO happy!

  24. August 28, 2013 8:22 pm

    Mehhhh you know what they say- no point crying over spilled milk..or errrr drunk latte in your case ;)! Your plan sounds all kinds of brilliant and hey, at least Maya got to revisit London!

    • August 29, 2013 3:19 pm

      Drunk latte in Ali’s case. 🙂

      And yes, Maya got a trip to London so I guess things could be much worse!

  25. August 28, 2013 8:33 pm

    So glad to read you go to Paris on the spur of the moment 🙂 I will be there in about 10 days so hopefully by the next time you visit I will be unpacked enough to have some chocolate or macarons with you!

    • August 29, 2013 3:19 pm

      I would love to Elaine! Lots of luck with your move!

      • August 29, 2013 4:56 pm

        Thanks Ameena! It gives me something to look forward to after I unpack 🙂

  26. August 28, 2013 9:30 pm

    I like your parenting-style.
    Have a croissant avec lots of beurre for moi:)

    • August 29, 2013 3:20 pm

      I had SO much butter in the last few days (as evidenced by my now crappy looking skin) but it was worth it!

  27. Shauna permalink
    August 28, 2013 11:07 pm

    Ameena, Ameena, Ameena, you’re killin’ me again. Grandparents are the best. I was dying when you called the camp. It’s very you. 🙂 Glad things are working out in the end, (ie. the Pain au Chocolat). 🙂 Did you know I have five years of college french? Do you speak it fluently? I can write maybe one paragraph with few grammatical errors. Think about you and much love to you.

    Shauna xo

    • August 29, 2013 3:21 pm

      I speak about 2 words of French…I am not that good with languages so I am always amazed with people who have that knack (i.e. you!).

      Thanks for the comment Shauna!

  28. August 29, 2013 4:31 am

    Ok this is quite rightfully my own fault that I’ve missed out on the fact that you’d moved to a new city but wow!!! Now I must go back and read all your previous posts…but meanwhile, hope you’re having fun in Paris 🙂

    • August 29, 2013 3:21 pm

      Thanks Asuma..for the comment and for reading!

      Paris was fantastic…back in London for a few days now. Love it here too. 🙂

  29. August 29, 2013 7:42 am

    ahhhh, the life of Ameena. oooo laaaa laaa

    you lucky lucky girl Xxx

  30. August 29, 2013 7:48 am

    so funny Ameena, I sent your post to my hubby. You are too hard on yourself, you are leaving your kid with her grandparents who she clearly loves to hang out with, not some complete stranger for day. Totally fine in my book. If I ever have a kid, I plan to use my parents and siblings to my full advantage. I hope bribery works!
    Have fun! Oh, and let’s do Sept 27 (fri) for our Nouga @ JG date… I’ll see if I can book resv. now. 🙂

    • August 29, 2013 3:22 pm

      Bribery works wonders Nisha. 🙂

      And Fri 27th sounds great! Already looking forward to it.

  31. August 29, 2013 7:59 am

    What a great excuse to go to London though 😉
    I’m sure Maya had fun with her grandparents!

    • August 29, 2013 3:23 pm

      Maya had a great time with her grandparents! Reinforced my decision to leave her in London. 🙂

  32. August 29, 2013 11:11 am

    Given that i read the list of things you do Ameena – Paris is the least you could treat yourself to 🙂 Im not too sure about Ali 😛

    • August 29, 2013 3:23 pm

      Such a good way to look at it Anu…love this comment!

  33. August 29, 2013 11:38 am

    Hee Hee. But then you got to see ME! 😀

    • August 29, 2013 3:24 pm

      Definitely one of the highlights of my trip Jennie! I had the best time.

  34. August 29, 2013 12:14 pm

    You would have been terrible if you weren’t so delightfully amusing 🙂
    Love the post. Have some macarons for me and then post pics too.

    • August 29, 2013 3:24 pm

      Thanks Shefali…glad I could amuse and not offend. 🙂

  35. August 29, 2013 1:21 pm

    Wow you get to go to London and Paris.. Trust me, kids wait eagerly to be with there grandparents… Enjoy your trip!

  36. August 29, 2013 2:44 pm

    So glad you could do this. Many times better in many ways than the stress if you’d hired a sitter. Aha…! Now I see why NY makes more sense 😀

    • August 29, 2013 3:25 pm

      Sitters do stress me out…the uncertainty kills me!

  37. August 30, 2013 11:50 am

    Isn’t that what grandparents are for? Except for me, I already told my children that I’m not watching their kids, I’ll be jet setting to London and Paris 🙂


    • August 31, 2013 10:46 am

      I agree…I’m going to be telling Maya that myself. 🙂

  38. August 30, 2013 3:39 pm

    Wait… what about your jobs?? Or you can just pick up and leave?

    • August 31, 2013 10:46 am

      We are very lucky to be able to work remotely!

      • September 5, 2013 10:03 pm

        Lucky indeed! Love your blog!

      • September 6, 2013 1:41 am

        Thank you IP! I appreciate you reading. 🙂

  39. August 31, 2013 5:06 am

    Made me smile 🙂 Paris is always a yes!

  40. willgoh2 permalink
    August 31, 2013 8:57 am

    Dunno if anyone answered your question or perhaps it was rhetorical?

    The Dins = the collective family (or couple), plural.

    The Din’s… = possession of,

    Now, if the last name is Dins, and not Din, then possessive would be Dins’ and the plural form would be Dinses.

    There’s nothing wrong with having the kiddo spend quality time with the grandparents. I did the exact same thing with mine. Albeit the location wasn’t nearly as cosmopolitan as London or Paris, but she, too, had 9 days plus two weekends left after summer camp so I “enrolled” her into Camp G-Units for a full week. I mean, it’s important to forge strong bonds between generations and for moms and dads to recharge to be better, patient, loving parents. A win-win for all, no?

    • August 31, 2013 11:01 am

      Camp G-Units…too funny. Definitely a win-win!

      With regards to apostrophes…I wish that I’d had a summer camp devoted specifically to that topic as they remain a total mystery to me. Definitely my weak point!

      Love your comments, as always. 🙂

      • willgoh2 permalink
        August 31, 2013 3:10 pm

        Believe me, that’s the extent of my understanding of English grammar. Beyond that I’m at a lost as when to use “who” vs. “whom”, “compliment” vs. “complement”. What a pain those English are to create a written language so utterly impossible to understand.

      • September 1, 2013 4:57 am

        Ironically, those two items I have a pretty good handle on…LOL

  41. August 31, 2013 10:41 am

    Hope you liked both London and Paris. Sometimes it is good to leave the kids with someone trusted, for a change. In this way, kids have some space to be on their own. I love the way you are bringing up Maya.

    • August 31, 2013 11:03 am

      So nice of you to say Purabi, thank you!

      I’m still enjoying London! Wish I could live here forever. 🙂

  42. September 1, 2013 7:07 pm

    LOL…I like the way you think!!! Enjoy the rest of your holiday!

  43. September 1, 2013 9:38 pm

    Nice strategy to have fun without disturbing the fun of others Ameena. 🙂 The approach is good and quite acceptable by everyone. Thanks for sharing, may be, I too could use at a time of need. LOL 😀

    • September 6, 2013 1:41 am

      Thanks for the comment and for reading Ashutosh!

  44. September 2, 2013 10:56 am

    You are lucky that London is only a short flight now that you moved to NYC. I would love to go for a few days but the 11 hour plane ride from the West Coast is just not worth it!

    • September 6, 2013 1:42 am

      Agreed…the proximity to NYC is so much more doable!

  45. September 3, 2013 11:13 am

    Maya has the wonderful opportunity to have parents willing to fly to London on short notice for vacations! That’s awesome!

  46. September 6, 2013 12:12 pm

    Have a pain au chocolat for me!!! Also tell Ali I’d like a latte. No guilt Ameena — kinds love time with their grandparents!

  47. September 6, 2013 6:34 pm

    hahahha… parent award for both of you.

  48. September 7, 2013 2:58 pm

    Not neglectful….
    Smart as hell!
    Lucky Ameena! xx

  49. September 11, 2013 8:47 pm

    Just out of curiosity — Every photo had either you or Ali, taking turns in the smiling department. Intentional? 😀

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