Friday, April 25, 2008

One hundred....

This is my 100'th post. I have written more than 100, but I deleted many old posts - but of the ones that I did save, this is my 100th. I just read Kodi's mom's absolutely lovely 200th post and feel enveloped in the warmth of her words. What started as just a passing thing in order to post comments on my niece's blog, slowly took shape into occasional posts from me and now an every day activity - blog time. Reading my favorite blogs and leaving comments. Lurking at other times. Writing every now and then. I would like to write more often but it is a lot of fun to read what other write and leave comments for them.

I think of how my blog time has become so much a part of my every day routine...I never quite thought I would make any friends in this blog world. I wrote my first post when KB was 10m old. Now my second child KG is 10m old! Hard to believe that the people I came to know in the blog world, I have known for quite a long time now. MM, Tharini, Rohini...people who have visited my site since then and who I have continued to read till date....

After being a part of this wonderful online shower where the back stage fun and email exchanges were enormous, you feel like you are actually back in college...those carefree days where banter, fun and frolic happened so easily without much context.

I have made a few really nice friends too in the process of blogging. It feels good in the midst of the isolation I often feel being a SAHM - which is a separate post in itself - one that I have composed in my mind many times but never could coherently put forth in writing.

When ever there is a celebration of some anniversary or birthday, one tends to quickly reminisce on the past years or some events leading up to that in a flash of few seconds. While I think of the two years (and only 100 posts I know!) I have been blogging, random posts come to mind. The fun post from Poppins mom on how she imagined each blogger to be like a certain actress, the post from madmomma which I think about often when I tell B that the day will come when I have to really let go of KB, not when he goes to preschool but much later, the spiritual parenting post from Tharini, the random comments and fun we had in the "our song" tag over at Kodi's, some hilarious posts from Terri's, like this one, which made me laugh loudly and feel so good for those few minutes, some posts like this one from Kiran which make me realize how I have grown so attached to the kids I read about, the joy I feel at their successes, posts like that which also make me feel inspired as a mother...the arguments that tend to happen over our view points which we are able to set aside and continue our friendly comments...I could go on and on since so many posts come to mind every now and then in different contexts....

The friendships I have formed with a few people in the blog world has been such a source of comfort - when I sit down at night after a long tiring day, to see a meaningful conversation as part of an email from a blogger friend, some phone conversations that I had with a few blogger friends where I could chat like we have known each other for a long livens up a sagging spirit on some days. Thank you, my dear blog friends for that! The cynic in me sometime wonders if the same feeling will remain when we do meet up, if somehow there will be a lack of conversation...the kind of random thoughts I used to have when I was introduced to "potential" candidates for marriage by my parents. And it is probably a reflection of my personality, but I always think the other person must have a different image of me and will be let down when they do meet me in person! Well, I should stop here before I really totally ruin my image!

Signing off my 100th post with a feeling of nostalgia over the two years...a feeling of happiness and feel good after reading Kodi's 200th post which reminded me of how words can make connections and spread cheer even if a tangible hand cannot be felt over the virtual medium!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Riddle-me-Ree, Who can she be?

Greetings wonderful MTBs!!!

and good work to all of you!

For having solved the riddle before

I give you all this clue.

The letter " P "

Write it down, add it on...

And let’s move on to the next little song.

“Her name means night

The travails of parenthood she doeth write

Her blog is about her two tots

That drive her up the wall

She plays, she colors, she shares their glee

Just how much more cosier can it be?

Who is she?”

Solve it and you get your lead

Misguess, and you lose your speed

Solve it slow but solve it now

And before you go, take a little bow

Go to 'Comments' and leave me a clue

Tell me which blog you are off to.

Good luck! Good luck! Be on your way.

You have your work, cut out for the day!

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Hours of fun with a $3.00 toy!

KB has usually been good about actually making use of a lot of his toys and playing with them. At least it made me feel a little better that money (and batteries!) didn't go entirely waste. For example, he has played a lot with this "Alphabet pal" toy. He still enjoys the tunes for the different letters. The other day, KG while crawling and stopping suddenly to examine some unexpected treasure in her path kept thumping her feet on the caterpillar legs of this toy randomly. I was giving KG his lunch and his eyes suddenly lit up as if he heard a favorite song again after a long time. Every time her feet randomly hit a key, he would say "P - pop goes the weasel" or "X" or whatever alphabet that tune stood for. I bring some of his baby toys back from the garage every now and then for KG to enjoy and KB in fact seems to enjoy it just as much. Return to babyhood! :)

The one "toy" which has been a super hit of late (well, besides the ball which he loves to play with in different ways) - three dollars worth of balloons in different colors. He just loves balloons! He likes to run behind a bunch of balloons and kick it up before it hits the ground. The latest and more interesting way in which he plays with the balloon is to make one of us blow the balloon but not tie it after that. We just hand it over him and he pretends like it is a rocket or just says it with the same gusto as a take off, "One, two, the balloon! Whooosh!". Because of the air that is getting expelled, the balloon just randomly flies around like a little jet plane! It is actually great fun to watch even for us adults.

The other thing he does with the balloon is to spin it on the floor and see how much he is able to spin it. What happened by chance when B blew his balloon for him has now turned into another little game for him. When B was handing over his balloon to KB (for the grand release) the released air pushed his little car on it's own. So now, KB brings different objects to us - his little diesel truck, his Thomas Train, why, even his big ride on train and asks us to blow air into the balloon and he releases it behind one of these objects to see if it moves! He has been playing these balloon games nearly every day now for the last two weeks! It seems to be going strong. My brother visited us this weekend and of course was roped into blowing balloons soon after he came! Well, our lung capacity will improve pretty soon! I will be glad if more such three buck toys provide hours and hours of making merry!

Friday, April 18, 2008

Recipe time...

Gobi Gravy Curry

Thanks to the enthusiastic response I got the last time I posted a recipe - I feel like sharing another recipe. This time I wanted to share it because I randomly threw in a few things since I wanted some gravy dish fast to eat with frozen naan and it turned out to be really tasty. By the way, Deep Tandoori Naan is really good and is not too oily.

So here's the recipe.

One Cauliflower – cut into florets

Tomatoes – vine ripened – 2 , chopped into small pieces

Onions – 2 chopped fine
Heat about 2 table spoons of oil in a pan.

- Jeera - 1 teaspoon
- Fennel seeds - 1 teaspoon
Add both to the oil when it is hot.
(Ginger/garlic optional at this point)

- Add the onions

- Saute for a minute or two and then add the tomatoes and the gobi florets.

- Add a quarter cup of water and cover the pan and cook on medium until florets are cooked.

- Add salt and chilli powder, Dhania jeera powder (if you have it handy), some coriander (chopped a little). I also added cooked double beans for a starchy flavor in the gravy. Cook on low for another five minutes.

It is really tasty and you can make this dish reasonably fast.

Monday, April 14, 2008

As I dream of my son becoming a...

really good carnatic music vocalist, I see the Gods lining up against me and having their share of fun. KB loves music - like all children love music when exposed to it, he does too. He used to bring me CDs from our CD rack and ask me to play particular CDs that he chose for that moment. But for the last couple of months or so, he has learned to open up the CD case carefully, insert his index finger in the center of the CD and put in a new CD very carefully without touching the edges of the CD. So now I feel safe in telling him to just pick a CD and put it in himself.

And there lies the problem too. He decides what CD and puts it in himself - but this choice never includes carnatic music! I see that the more I pine to see my son, who seems to have keen music sense, showing promise of being a good singer, more likely it is that he will probably go completely in the western track and only that. Or may be he is just teasing me - which is very likely knowing him. He can identify a ton of CDs by their case now. He opens his eyes bright and wide and says "Mamma, am going to play Thelesio Monk" (for Thelonious Monk). That CD gets over and he keeps track of it while doing something else and tells me "CD mudinj peth" (CD over). He runs back to the CD rack and brings "The Moody blues" and turns that on. That's done and he brings "Tchaikovsky". And then "Leonard Cohen" his ultimate favorite. I hear him hum "Every body knows that the dice are loaded". He talks to his Periamma and sings this to her!

After a round of random selections of all non carnatic music CDs by him, I tell him hopelessly, "KB please can you play mamma's favorite CD - kurai onrum illai"? He looks at me like he is the older one looking at a child and says "Yen daa kurai onrum illai'ye poda maatengre?" (Why don't you want to put "Kurai Onrum Illai" CD?). And then says, "Mamma sad". I tell him, "Amam Kanna...Mamma very sad. Can you pleaaase put Kurain onrum illai? Mamma is very sad that you don't play it". He pauses. Looks at me intently for a second. And says "Mamma Mamma don't be sad...I'll give mamma a hug".

KB runs to me and hugs my legs while I continue cutting vegetables.

"KB so are you going to put Kurai onrum illai now?"

"Noooouu....I am going to put "Dire Straits".

Save for the fact that he really enjoys carnatic music when I sing it to him, I would have completely given up all hope of him singing it for me. I enjoy all the other music, but if I dream of him singing for me, I dream of him singing carnatic music, not playing electric guitar for me. Don't live your dreams through your children, Noon, I tell myself. I think to myself "Well, at least he loves music as much as I do...thank God for that". After nearly two months of this sort of discussion between me and KB, this morning he very decidedly went to the CD rack, picked up a CD and went and played it. It looks like he does like to tease me. He did not play "Kurai Onrum Illai" after all. But I was over joyed to hear M.S.Subbulakshmi singing "Mudakaratha modakam". Again this is a song he knows quite well because I sing it to him very often. Well, at least he finally gave in and played one carnatic CD for me after all these days! I can't tell you how happy I was at this trivial thing he did for me!

Friday, April 04, 2008

To bed at 7.30pm

There is something about the moment when I take KG to her crib and put her in there for the night. Especially now that it is spring and the days are longer, it is still somewhat bright at 7.30pm when I take her in for her bed time. Sometimes a little earlier than that, sometimes a little later than that.

Downstairs KB will be busy bouncing his blue ball or changing CDs in the CD player. And there will be some music or the other playing. Until that time KG would have been playing downstairs and trying to grab any toy that KB was playing with...crawling around to visit me in the kitchen or poke at some interesting object on her way and stop right there. Suddenly her bedtime will come and I see her looking more subdued. A few minutes later, she rubs her eyes and looks obviously sleepy. I take her upstairs to her crib, turn on the lullabies CD, turn down the blinds and make her cozy under her blankets. There is something about that moment that I find so pure, so baby like. No matter what fun activity is happening downstairs, when it is her bedtime, much earlier than any of ours, she is ready to sleep. There is something tranquil about her being able to do that. To have her own schedule, to detach herself from the rest of the world at that moment and sleep peacefully. With the piano lullabies playing softly, in the dim light seeping through crevices in the windows, there is a feeling of peace when I put her in the crib. In that fleeting moment I feel a sense of bliss. As she pulls her legs forward ,lifts her back up, curls into a ball and puts her thumb in her mouth and drifts off to sleep, I feel as if I am observing something very special at that moment. I cherish now every such moment with my little baby - even more so than I did with KB - because I know this is it - our times with our children as babies.

Each day forward there is the excitement of the new, their new milestones and seeing them grow. But each passing day also means one step closer to our having to let go of them. Our little babies who are now ours totally, whole heartedly, unconditionally, will become individuals in their own right and we will be a subset in their world but not be their entire world like it is now. The loss of their innocence and the beauty of their growth intermingle in making this time sweet and heart breaking at the same time. Despite the aggravations of every day life, managing the work, dealing with people etc, I cherish this time - seeing the two children grow, interact and truly live in the moment.

Thursday, April 03, 2008


Sometimes people make remarks thoughtlessly...randomly. And leaves you with a bad taste that takes a while to shake off of your system each time you see that person.

The other day a friend walked in as I was feeding KG. I make KG sit in her bouncer in order to feed her - that is pretty much the only time she is put on the bouncer. This friend really likes KG (and very obviously favors her over KB - which makes me feel bad - but I do think she is not obliged to like them both equally). She walked in , dropped off something and ran into the house quickly to give a hug for KG. She told me how KG reminds her of her own daughter when she was a baby like KG. And then added this. "But you know L (her daughter) was so active, she would never sit in the bouncer like this". A very casual remark. But something very distasteful in my opinion. And this is not the first time she has said something of this nature. She made a similar remark about KB in comparison with her son. "Look at KB - if you put him in one place, he sits there. Whereas if you put my son in one place he will just keep running around...he is too active". I just don't respond to remarks like these. For one, I feel too petty to defend my children against such nonsensical remarks and I also cannot stand the strain that comes from such sharp exchanges had I retorted. But when it happens more than once, you somehow feel less inclined to ignore it. I would not even dream of making such remarks about her children. She is a nice person in many ways, but it comes as a package deal - the comparisons and remarks such as these. I just wish people would think a little more before making such remarks.

Another remark of a similar vein made by yet another person who visited my place. She saw a photo collage and said "Oh this is KB's photo?". I said yes.
"Oh wow - he looks nice in this picture - I mean his c.o.l.o.r" She spelled it out. Like it is some taboo word. I just don't know how to respond to a remark like that. Do I say, he looks nice even now? or what's wrong with his c.o.l.o.r now? That would make it look like I actually care about his being "fair" like he did in that picture...I really don't even notice such things. I just don't get how people in this day and age can point to a picture and say he looked nice because he looked fairer in that picture and that he has become darker now! I mean to say this to my face on top of it! I just don't get it at all!

Ok, enough ranting. Time to go to bed.