It’s time for another host interview! Let’s say hello to one of our hosts for January…
from Mom Funda.
If you are new, Life of Real Moms is a week-long, prompt based Photo Challenge Instagram with the objective of building a community, and you can read all about how it started and how you can play along, by clicking here. As a part of this challenge, every week two Insta-Moms will bring to you a lovely theme-based photo contest with exciting prizes and fun games.
Let’s get to know Elina a little better.
YOUR INSTAGRAM HANDLES HAVE PRETTY INTERESTING NAMES.
Tell us more about the start of ‘Mom Funda’ and ‘Diet Funda.’ How did you come up with the names, and what motivated you to start each of them?
Elina says, “Haha, yes, I get asked this a lot. So, around 8 years back when I came up with the idea of online counseling and blogging, I had to give it a name. My first choice was ‘Diet Mantra’, but that name was taken by not one but two nutritionists! After two weeks of brainstorming, the name ‘DietFundamentals’ struck me, but I was told that it is very long and sounds techincal too, and hence it became shorter (and cooler :P) –‘DietFunda’. Many years later, when I ventured into mom-blogging, the name ‘MomFunda’ didn’t get a second thought. Although, gramatically it may not be correct, but I liked how it sounded so, there it was.
DietFunda was actually just a blogpage where I used to write about nutrition and lifestyle in general. I was barely 18-19 years old back then. Later, I delved into online counselling and I’d be lying if I told there has been no looking back since then. In 2010, there was no WhatsApp (Or maybe there was but not many used it), so the idea of online counselling was restricted to emails only. Which is why, it didn’t pick up or get liked much. Later, I got interested in research and teaching and didn’t really focus on DietFunda. It was when I got pregnant and had to quit my job due to complications, that I had to rouse it and rework on the startegies. And boom, this time, certainly there was no looking back! 🙂
About MomFunda, I was introduced to the world of mom-blogging and I was heavily inspired by Nikita (Albiet, back then, she had no clue that she inspired me to become one), the founder of #LifeOfRealMoms. I participated in the first challnege and realised how much I enjoyed writing and sharing my stories, my take on things and basically merging science with baby-rearing. In a months time, I made a different public account and ever since, Instagram has become my favourite App of all times.”
DID YOU ALWAYS KNOW THAT YOU WANTED TO BE A NUTRITIONIST?
Elina says, “I have always loved studying about the human body, but no, being a nutritionist wasn’t my dream at all. I always wanted to be a surgeon. But very early on I realised I had vasovagal syncope- which means, even the sight or smell of blood results in sudden drop in my heart rate and blood pressure, so much that I’ve also fainted during normal blood routine checkups. Which is why, becoming a doctor was out of the question. But I loved dealing with people’s health issues, understanding their bodies, working in a hospital setup and that’s why, becoming a nutritionist was not only apt but also wise. Today, even if I don’t have a clinic or if I’m not working at all, I can still bring my knowledge to everyday use. ”
WHAT’S YOUR SECRET TO BALANCING. . .
…a super-active baby, a business, a blog, work on your PhD, and still find time to cook delicious meals for Boo, all in just 24 hours?
Elina says, “Honestly, I don’t plan my day at all and just go with the flow. But mostly, it has to do with the fact that I don’t sleep much. In fact, I don’t like to, and that works in my favour. Also, these three things have helped me a lot:
1. I cook the entire day’s meal when someone is around to keep an eye on my baby. For me, that is early in the morning before my husband leaves for work.
2. When I’m with her, I just be with her. I try not to do anything except taking a couple of random and candid shots for Instagram stories. All the activities and meals that you see on my stories are improvised based on her interest on that day and the ingredients I have with me. There’s nothing planned beforehand. Absolutely nothing.
3. I work only after she sleeps. That way, I’m able to focus and be more productive.
4. I have accepted the fact that my home is going to be messy all the time. This really helps me not just save time by avoiding frequent cleaning but also keeps me calm.”
WHAT ARE THE CHALLENGES YOU HAVE FACED IN YOUR CURRENT FAMILY SET-UP. . .
…where you’re the primary caregiver for your child in a nuclear family, and you work from home? Do you have help? What does your support system look like?
Elina says, “It’s challenging. Like really, really challenging. On most days, I don’t get a breather until she sleeps (especially after she has dropped her day nap), but I’ve learnt this- If I keep complaining, I’ll never look at the bright side of this situation. The good thing is- I am able to raise her my way and the struggle is (hopefully) worth it.
Usually, I’m the only one with her almost all day. My husband comes pretty late and she’s usually asleep by then, but he does take care of her every day when I cook in the morning and also on the weekends- so yes, that’s there. I go to meet my parents once a week for a couple of hours to relax and that’s one bounty I’m extremely grateful for. Apart from this, I have a househelp who comes for 2 hours everyday to do the dishes and sweep the floor.”
IF YOU WEREN’T A NUTRITIONIST OR A BLOGGER, WHAT WOULD YOU BE?
Elina says, “That’s a toughie. Maybe a surgeon or a photographer, or a designer/stylist or maybe a travel vlogger. Haha, I realise those are some really diverese options, but yes, a creative or a health-realted job for sure. ”
WHAT DO YOU LOVE THE MOST ABOUT INSTAGRAM?
How has it impacted your life?
Elina says, “I love how Instagram took me out of the loneliness that walloped on me after becoming a mother, which I’m sure happens to most of us mothers. But more than anything else, I love how our simple tips/recipes that we share, helps fellow moms cook healthier/raise their children in a better way. I learn something new everyday which inspires me to raise her more mindfully.”
IS THERE ANYTHING YOU MISS FROM YOUR LIFE BEFORE YOU BECAME A MOM?
Elina says, “Spontaneity! When I wasn’t a mother, I would leave anytime I wanted and go wherever I loved without thinking too much. But now, even a simple trip to the mall requires so much thought and planning. ”
WHEN YOU LOOK AT OTHERS’ SEEMINGLY PERFECT LIVES ON INSTAGRAM. . .
…how do you manage to keep it real?
Elina says, “Because real is the only way for me. With a business to take care of and also handle a toddler single-handedly, I don’t have the time to plan and execute photoshoots, buy twinning clothes or arrange for perfect props to make the picture look beautiful. I’m not saying that it is incorrect or unethical to do so. Certainly not! In fact, I love such beautiful pictures, but I, for one, don’t have the time or the patience it needs. And hence, ‘keeping it real’ it is.”
ON ROUGH DAYS, WHAT KEEPS YOU GOING?
Elina says, “My daughter’s smile. No matter how cliche this sounds, but undeniably it is she who keeps me going. Her antics, smartness, and innocent yet witty responses have now become my constant source of entertainment! ”
IF SOMEONE WERE TO VISIT YOUR BLOG FOR THE FIRST TIME…
…what would you like them to read first?
Elina says, “I’d love it if you could start with these:
- My Child is Lean And I’m Not Worried!
- What Happened When I Kept My Phone Away While Nursing My Baby?
- 12 Baby Food Ideas For Busy Moms (6-12m)
Thank you for taking the time out to do this. It’s so good to get to know you a little better! We are so happy to have you as a part of the LORM family.