Friends, Romans and Countrymen,
I’m pleased, honored and super-excited to host the first episode of Star Rendezvous featuring Mrs.Aarthi Satheesh, who is popularly known to the cyberspace as Yummy Tummy Aarthi. Aarthi, despite being a world-class food blogger with more than a million followers swarming around her foolproof recipes, is gracefully simple and down-to-earth in nature.
Interviewing Yummy Tummy Aarthi became one of the priorities on my bucket list since the inception of Merry Motherhood blog. Being an amateur blogger, I had my own doubts and dilemmas when I approached Mrs.Aarthi for this interview. To my surprise, she joyfully accepted my request in one go and her respect for my passion is indeed an icing on the cake. (Food pun unintended, LoL).
The fun part about this interview is that the entire conversation is based on her role as a mother cum mom blogger, with only little reference to her role as a food blogger.
Without further ado, let us jump straight into the Q&A that happened during the rendezvous.
1. You have two adorable daughters and we know them by the pet names Maha and Mahi. What are their real names?
My elder daughter’s name is Praniska and the little one’s name is Prajishaa.
2. With the popularity of Yummy Tummy rising on one side, who/what inspired you to become a mommy blogger?
It’s none other than Maha who inspired me to start the blog Mahamylife. I signed up with an intent to document the milestones and record the day-to-day activities of Maha. The excitement every first-time mom gets when they transcribe their child’s development is incomparable. As I steadily gained experience as a parent, I began to share the related life-hacks, experiences, DIY tips and tricks in my blog to help the first time mommies sail their journey with ease.
3. What do you enjoy the most about being a mother?
I absolutely love watching the cute and flawless expressions of my kids when they are around. Just looking at them makes me feel good instantly.
4. Who is your rolemodel in parenting?
Undoubtedly, my mom. I lost my father at the age of 10. It was my mom who nurtured the three of us (two sisters and I) single-handedly. With just a single person’s income, she brought us up in the most comfortable way any child would ask for. I dote on my mom’s courage and unyielding attitude always.
5. What is the biggest challenge you have faced as a mom?
Well, there has never been much of a challenge in parenting my kids. Although sometimes I struggle a bit to balance work and life. With two kids around, hindrance to continuous blogging is a challenge I face occasionally. But by God’s grace, I’m blessed with understanding family members who respect my passion-driven career, especially my MIL who takes care of Mahi completely when I spend time on cooking or blogging.
6. Do you read to your kid(s)? What are their favorite books?
Maha loves Peppa Pig series a lot.
7. How often do you let your child watch TV?
Believe it or not, my kids are not much inclined to the TV. Yay! Rarely, Maha watches Chhota Bheem when she sits for dinner. The girls have a suitcase full of barbie dolls which they love to play with, even for the whole day.
8. What is your favorite clothing store/app/brand that you visit/use?
Clothing store : Mazhalai, Nagercoil. The store has exactly the kind of dresses I wish to buy for my daughters. This place has never let my hopes down anytime. We even ordered Mahi’s first birthday dress from this store.
Clothing app : Hopscotch. The quality is better than others, their price range and varieties are so wide that I personally find Hopscotch fascinating.
Cloth brand : I do not buy a specific brand for my kids these days. But when they were so little, I used to stock Carter’s onesies and dresses in our wardrobe. They have this oh-so-super-soft texture and finest quality that you can’t simply say no to.
9. How do you define your parenting style?
I don’t believe in the concept of spanking a child to instill the art of discipline. When my children throw temper tantrums or go overboard, I take a deep breath and instead of shouting back a volume of words, I politely ask for the reason behind their act and explain them why they shouldn’t do it. This works well with my kids who most often will not repeat the mistake after I tell them not to. Trust me, patience in parenting really works wonders.
There’s one more thing I would like to proudly share with you all. I was so particular about bringing in an unbreakable bond between my two daughters the moment Mahi was born. Maha (the elder one) went admiringly emotional when the baby arrived, for I had been insisting her from the beginning of my pregnancy on how responsible she needs to be, in taking care of her sibling who would treat her no less than a mom. The words got framed so deep inside her innocent mind that she now takes care of her little sister just like the way I do. It is such a delight to see them bond closer and closer everyday.
10. If you get a chance to relive a bygone day, which day would you choose?
The day Maha was born 🙂
11. What’s your guilty pleasure while taking a break from the usual chores?
I enjoy reading cook books. Even if it’s just a half an hour break from my routine, you can see my head sunk into one of the hundred cook books I treasure.
I also love baking. The thrill of waiting to see the perfect output and the soul-cleansing, fresh aroma that comes straight out of the oven are to die for!
12. Do you have a favorite brand in baby care essentials?
I usually refrain from using store-bought baby products for my kids. Except the Himalaya Gentle Baby Shampoo, every other baby product my daughters use is home-made. I use virgin coconut oil to moisture their skin and never apply powder or cream on their delicate skin.
13. What is the first food you gave for your kids?
Ragi, the wonder food.
The last two questions are related to blogging.
14. What motivated you to stay consistent in the beginning of your journey as a blogger?
I’m more of a self-motivated person. So, the journey wasn’t too tough to handle. When I began to blog, my friends and family motivated me to stay on track. Their comments and feedback still means a lot to me. The idea to post the step-by-step pictures of every recipe is also a suggestion given by one of my friends, which now positively distinguishes my blog from others. It is my passion to cook and the moral support from loved ones which together motivated me to be consistent during the initial days of blogging.
15. A word or two for the budding bloggers:
Just be you and follow your passion. Never give up on your dreams. One fine day, you’ll wake up achieving them. Self-motivation is the key. Good luck and keep blogging!