Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Shame Shame Aunty

I heard pattu singing a tune few days back. It didn't sound like any of the regular tunes that we are familiar with, so I asked her.
Pattu: That song that aunty on TV sings amma
Amma: Which one? Which aunty sings?
Pattu: That shame shame aunty who wears only a blouse and sings
Amma: *@#**!!@%

Inside Amma's head:
Is it ok for girls her age to say this? Notice this?
Ban completely? Or just play casually matter of fact and don't make too much hoo haa about it....and quietly make sure she doesn't get a chance to watch too much shame shame
What did she actually understand and mean by shame shame?

Monday, September 28, 2009

Golu Pics

Here are the Golu pics

That's the entire Golu

This is the park/ forest / hill temple

And that's Pattu in all Navratri splendor and the two new additions to this year's Golu

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Evolution Chart - Fear

Bedtime at 1.7 yrs:

After a lot of twisting and turning and talking and singing
Amma: Sleep... else the security will come blowing the whistle
Pattu would clasp amma tightly and try to sleep...she was so scared of whistle

Bedtime at 2 yrs

After a lot of jumping on the bed and spraying water in the bathroom (on the pretext of susu)
Amma: We have to switch off the lights now...security is coming...
Pattu: Security is my friend amma..he won't hurt me

Bedtime at 2.5 yrs:

10 PM and we are still playing in the car park...Security comes blowing his whistle

Pattu (to security): Its dark and even the moon has come out... you should go and sleep...you should not walk on the street blowing the whistle...

Bedtime at 2.7 yrs:

Amma is dozing off... appa can't manage anymore...
 Appa: I'm going to call the security if you don't sleep NOW!
 Pattu: I'll call Popeye and tell him to bash up the security... Popeye will have Spinach and beat him up...

Bedtime last week:

After a lot of struggle, pattu is almost dozing off when security's whistle goes off
Pattu (all groggy): Tell that security not to blow taht whistle and make noise amma... he is disturbing my sleep...

Wonder what next!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

My First Award

Swapna has given me this award and it feels so good... I can relate to Pattu's joy when she is given a 'Gift'! Thanks Swapna!

The Award Rules

You can accept the award and post it on your blog together with the name of the person who gave it to you with his/her blog link.

The next thing to do is to pass the award to other blogs that you’ve newly discovered. Don't forget to contact the bloggers to let them know they have been chosen for this award.

So, I give this to all these lively and interesting blogs that I've newly discovered (Well, I'm quite new myself and slowing discovering my way around :) )

- Swati
- Aryan
- Mama Mia

Ladies, please accept this and pass it around.... 

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Navratri, Golu, Etc

Been quite busy shopping for Navratri and Golu. I just love this shopping - picking up little gifts for everyone...the nine types of sundals for the nine days have been decided... and who will visit when etc has been decided.

Finally, Golu has also been assembled. I really enjoy this festival more than the others. I think this is one of the few festivals that gives you a chance to be creative, the rest are mostly focused on 'food' and 'ritual'.

Though Golu was assembled on Friday, the hill temple and the park/ forest
/ farm... (well, it has some nice park benches, some wild animals and some farm animals..they all had to be accommodated within that space) got ready only today. Have soaked ragi seeds in advance so that they sprout on time to make the hill/ park green. So, am 'happy tired' today. Will post some pics of this soon...

Pattu somehow hasn't caused damage to the Golus so far - she's seen three already. This time she was up with me till 12.30 AM (No wonder actually - that's usual time) and quite excited. She sat on the Golu padi like a golu bommai and then she sat along with some of the golu bommais. After putting up all the dolls, had to tell her not to disturb the ummachi's since they would be sleeping - she asks, 'why are they standing and sleeping' ...well, I wasn't quite prepared for that and attempted a sad, 'that's their style' kind of an explanation. It wasn't convincing enough, obviously.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Vidyasagar, Aishy's Puzzles

Visited the Vidyasagar (Spastic Society of India, renamed) exhibition last Saturday.  Quite a pretty array I thought. Bright colourful stuff in papier mache - bowls, fridge magnets, jewelery boxes, wall hangings etc. Pretty table mats made of dried flowers and stuff, jute bags, folders and other such things. Picked up a few things. The place itself was quite warm and reminded me of the college fests where all of us enthu students put up stalls and had a roll!  I enjoyed just being there.

Two stalls that really caught my attention:

-Aishy's Puzzles: An autistic girl who can solve complex jigsaw puzzles using just spacial concepts (without looking at the picture or reading the instructions) in a few hours/ days depending on the puzzle complexity. Her parents frame the puzzles that she has solved and they are put up for sale. I wanted to pick up one of those but the pieces that I wanted were unique ones and not for sale. However, her parents would let me know when the next set of puzzles are ready - I definitely want to pick up one.
-Another child who does such wonderful 'reverse paintings'. I picked up a Ganesha. The boy was sleeping when I visited the stall.

The children from Vidyasagar have made most of the stuff there and they were also present in their respective stalls and actively selling and billing. In one of the stall, there was this boy who would pick up just about anything I touch and run to the counter to get it billed. We all had a hearty laugh and he laughed along...

This is one of the few really useful shopping trips that has left me feeling so good ... Chennaites, please visit...I think it is still on...

Monday, September 14, 2009

To Cut or Not to Cut

Pattu's hair has grown - falling on her face, over her ears and annoying her a bit. She doesn't like to wear a band, clip, or anything else to hold the hair in place. She'll remove them within seconds. So, we were thinking of going for a hair cut. But she wouldn't budge - she is terified of the scissors!  
Here's a detailed account of the episodes...

Act I Scene I - Thursday last week:

Amma: Pattu, if you don't want a hair cut, you should wear a band, otherwise hair will fall on your face
Pattu: No amma, I'll have a headache if I wear a band
Amma: Then let's cut your hair
Pattu: Nooooo
Amma: Then, what do you want to do?
Pattu: After some serious thought, 'I'll get mottai done like appa...' after some more consideration, 'Amma, you also get mottai done like appa...'

Act I Scene II - Fiday Last week

Amma: Hey, Pattu's going for a haircut on Sunday! (Amma's trick to make it sound like some treat that she's been looking forward to!)
Pattu: No amma, scissors will be sharp... I'm a small girl, it'll hurt
Amma: ( tasting a dose of her own medicine!) Then wear a band
Pattu: Nooo..

Act I Scene III - Saturday

A Firm Amma: Pattu - you have to decide - haircut or band!
Pattu: (Cornered): I'll wear band (Lesser evil)
Amma: (wanting to confirm claims) ok, wear this now (and forces it on Pattu)
Pattu: (without choice accepts and tries to look happy)
Amma checks after 5 mins - band nowhere on pattu's head.

Decision: Pattu will have a haircut

Act II Scene I - Sunday Morning

Amma: Hey, Pattu's going for a haircut!
Pattu: Will it hurt amma
Amma: No kanna... we'll have a nice aunty cut it for you this time
Pattu: She'll have soft scissors
Amma: Yes
Pattu: Ok..(Worried but trying to accept)

Act II Scene II - Sunday Noon

Amma fixes appointment
Pattu: (realising there's no way out) Where are we going
Amma: To the beauty parlour
Pattu: Aunty will cut?
Amma: Yes
Pattu: (turns to Paati and says) It won't hurt Paati, aunty will have soft scissors..

Act II Scene III - At the Parlour

Aunty wasn't free so, we had an uncle! Well, uncle was quite friendly and we liked the revolving chair. Started peacefully...somehere when the scissors got closer, panic attacked and amidst screams, we cajoled, threatened, begged and pleaded and bribed (with chocolate) to finally get it over. What started as a mushroom cut ended up looking like an army cut! Whatever...no more managing hair for next two months! I'm a bit disappointed - a mushroom cut would have looked nicer.

Act III Scene I: After the haircut - At the Parlour

After shaking the parlour with her screams, Pattu licks her chocolate peacefully and casually waves everyone a nice friendly goodbye...as though nothing happened. The whole parlour turned around to say bye to her...a bit relieved I suppose.

Act IV Scene I: At Bedtime

Almost dozing off after bedtime routine ... suddenly

Pattu: Waaaaahhh....
Amma: (Confused) What happened!
Pattu: I want my hair ..waaahhh...I want my hair....
Amma: (even more confused) ok.... I'll go to the parlour tomorrow and get it back...we'll stick it back on your head...
Pattu: (mumbling)...ok...
When did the 'Bonding with the Hair' happen??!!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Pattu's Gift for Amma

Yesterday when I got back from office, I handed over a gift (a memento that Sk received for one of his lectures) to Pattu since she likes to open these gift wrapped boxes. She didn't expect a gift in the middle of the week, and without a reason - that left her a bit overwhelmed. It must have been the Birthday hangover of 'Return Gifts', she comes back few minutes later holding a leftover Birthday balloon filled with water (and secured tightly) - 'Amma, I also have a gift for you...see...'

By far the most creative gift that I've received so far.

I asked her why she gave me a gift and pat comes the reply, 'You are a good girl na amma, that's why.'
Amma: Why am I a good girl?
Pattu: Because you gave me a gift... (pauses, thinks) ...because you do kakka, moocha (potty) in the toilet...and you don't touch the sand while playing in the park... if you touch the sand, I'll give you injection. If you are a good girl, I'll give you a gift again tomorrow...ok?

Birds of Paradise

There are times when you eagerly wait for something, you dream and prepare for its arrival and it eludes you for so long that you forget all about it, shut that piece of hope in an old iron trunk, lock it and throw the keys into the river. And bury the memory.

And out of the blue, it shows up. Making you go berserk. Knocking you out when you are least prepared. And then you realise that's the best way it could have happened to you.

Birds of Paradise - beautifully alluring and a recent favourite, I was excited when I brought a plant home about 6 months back. I would look out of the window everyday hoping to see the blossoms and finally gave up after 2 whole months. And suddenly, two weeks back, it bloomed! And how!

I know this incident doesn't really deserve this dramatic a preamble, but it triggered some memories in that direction....

PS: Guys, don't snigger, I'm tagging this post under, 'philosophy' :D

Tuesday, September 08, 2009


Conversation between 8 yr old girls in the playground

8 yr old from 2 kids family: We wanted a dog, but mom said, 'we already have two dogs in the house, I don't want one more' ...giggles

8 yr old from 3 kids family: My mom says, 'I feel like a zoo keeper' .... giggles

8 yr old from 2 kids family: with just the two of us, my mom goes mad ...with three of you, I don't know how your mom manages

8 yr old from 3 kids family: Oh, we have a great strategy... we fight through the evening and night and then we are off to sleep and by the time we wake up, we've forgotten all about it...

The First Grey Hair!

You guessed it - found my first strand of grey hair few days back. I wasn't really looking for it though. A sudden shimmer of silver struck me and there it was!

First reactions:

- Wow! I've got one too! (I like the salt and pepper looks ... god promise!....not sure if it'll suit me though)
- If it is just one strand, as in just a stray one... it is supposed to be lucky. Looked for more and didn't find ...yippie, there's luck hiding somewhere
- Amma: 'Pattu...see amma's grey hair....' Pattu: 'yea yea..amma's got grey hair' ...like I've won some trophy! Well, that's how I jumped, so can't really blame her.
- Phew! I'm getting old!
- What'll hubby say? (No much, considering he has no hair!)
- Will I react differently to the Vasmol ads?? With Kajol as brand ambassador, I shouldn't feel part of the 'Old' league... maybe just second youth
- How many of my friends are ahead of me/ behind me? (how fast am I aging in comparison?)

...as I was musing, Pattu says, 'I also have many grey hairs amma...see ...(bends to show her hair) ... lots more than you...'

Monday, September 07, 2009

Old Toys, New Games

I was sorting out Pattu's toys and books - thinking of putting some of the old ones in the cupboard (the ones that I would like to keep), thinking of disposing some and make space for some new entries. Pattu walked in and loved the state of mess, with all her toys and books spread all over the room, mess created by Amma so she's not the culprit, there was nothing more she could ask for. She found some of her old toys, the ones that she had abandoned and moved on... she was initially excited to see them after a break. I thought it was nostalgia. And it was. She didn't stop with that though, she refused to let me put them away.

Over the last few days, I've noticed that she's invented new ways of playing with those toys.

- The stacking cubes for instance - she stacked them up, picked up a ball and tried the bowling game. She got familiar with bowling when we had rented the game during her b'day.
- And then the drag on lady bug - she sat on the bed and did fishing with it - the bug became the fish and the fishing rope in her hand, cot as the boat and the room as the lake.
- The stacking rings stringed on a rope made a garland
- She takes her teddies for a walk on the pram

Well, maybe its not a bad idea to bring out old toys once in a while...hmmm...

Saturday, September 05, 2009


I've been at 'Alice in Wonderland' with renewed interest yet again. Sometimes when I'm bored or too stressed and feel like a break, I love to pick up the book, take a random page and read on. Somehow every time I read it I seem to discover something new...either discover a new perspective, a hidden humour or just a new sentiment towards it...

The recent interest seems to be oozing out of me from time to time... verses figured in my FB status messages ... and it replaced the usual rhymes and songs that I sing with Pattu.

I realised the seriousness of this addiction when a colleague chipped, 'You eat Eggs?' on seeing me chomping on an egg sandwich (he didn't know I am a lacto-ovo-vegetarian), to which I said, 'Yeah, I've never been introduced to the Egg, so I can eat it...you see?'

I saw 'Duh??! on his face...obviously he didn't see.

For those who don't know Alice that well, here's the excerpt:

At last the Red Queen began. `You've missed the soup and fish,' she said. `Put on the joint!'

And the waiters set a leg of mutton before Alice, who looked at it rather anxiously, as she had never had to carve a joint before.

`You look a little shy; let me introduce you to that leg of mutton,' said the Red Queen. `Alice -- Mutton; Mutton -- Alice.' The leg of mutton got up in the dish and made a little bow to Alice; and Alice returned the bow, not knowing whether to be frightened or amused.

`May I give you a slice?' she said, taking up the knife and fork, and looking from one Queen to the other.
`Certainly not,' the Red Queen, very decidedly: `it isn't etiquette to cut any one you've been introduced to. Remove the joint!' And the waiters carried it off, and brought a large plum-pudding in its place.

`I won't be introduced to the pudding, please,' Alice said rather hastily, `or shall we get no dinner at all. May I give you some?'
But the Red Queen looked sulky, and growled `Pudding -- Alice; Alice -- Pudding. Remove the pudding!' and the waiters took it always so quickly that Alice couldn't return its bow.

However, she didn't see why the Red Queen should be the only one to give orders, so, as an experiment, she called out `Waiter! Bring back the pudding!' and there it was again in a moment like a conjuring-trick. It was so large that she couldn't help feeling a little shy with it, as she had been with the mutton; however, she conquered her shyness by a great effort and cut a
slice and handed it to the Red Queen.

`What impertinence!' said the Pudding. `I wonder how you'd like it, if I were to cut a slice out of you, you creature!' `It spoke in a thick, suety sort of voice, and Alice hadn't a word to say in reply: she could only sit and look at it and gasp.

`Make a remark,' said the Red Queen: `it's ridiculous to leave all the conversation to the pudding!'

Painting & Pattuspeak

We have been heavily into painting these days. We've emptied 4 boxes of water colour in the last 2-3 weeks and already on to the 5th one. I also notice some improvements in Pattu's skills with the brush and the crayons:

1. She's able to control the brush to apply colour within a given boundary fairly well.
2. She contemplates on the colours - the serious expression on her face suggests some thinking behind her choice of colours. The thinking per se is not apparent yet .
3. She doesn't like interruptions - looks like she knows what she is doing! She is annoyed when I ask her why she has chosen those colours or tell her to colour a paticular portion of the paper etc.
4. She remains focussed on one task for more than 5 mins - which is a great improvement over the usual 'few seconds'. Phew!
5. She is careful while using colours - she washes her brush quite well before moving on to the next colour making sure the colours don't get mixed up. She frets if that happens. After washing the brush she taps it on the edge of the water bowl (mimicing my style) to let off excess water so that it doesn't drip all over the desk and dilute paint too much.
6. She understands that we have to clean up and helps me with it. She doesn't spray the dity paint water on our white wash basin, but pours it carefully in the bathroom drain taking care not to stain the floor!
7. Wants her hands to be washed.
8. There's more paint on the paper than on the desk/ face & limbs

Last night while we were painting, Pattu used white colour on th paper (after smearing the paper with 5 other colours). Then she went for blue and applied it over the white.
Amma: Why are you applying blue over the white? Apply it somewhere else on the paper!
Pattu: "Oh God! How do I make you understand!" expression. 'If I don't put blue over the white, the white will fly away in the air with the fan on...then it'll go sit on the fan and we won't have any white na amma...that's why..'
Amma: Duh! Ok, got it!

Whatever that meant!

Thursday, September 03, 2009

Birthday Birthday Oh What Fun!

We had Pattu's B'day party last weekend so that all kids could make it. We had it at the park in our colony so kids could run around and play freely and I think that was a good idea.

Its been a year and a half since we moved into this neighborhood, and Pattu's 2nd birthday party was the first official party of the colony. We probably had only 15 families who had moved in by then.Though we had invited only the kids last time, most of the families had turned up just so that we all could meet and get to know each other. The nostalgia brought most of those families back and we really had a good time.

Hired some games (bowling pin set, dart game..) from Toyzdayout - kids just loved them and had a great time! After the cake cutting and eating formalities, kids gathered and started the games and went on till 9 PM till they dropped from sheer exhaustion. We had all age groups and so we had games designed for all of them.

This time we had our camera in shape (yeah, we didn't have batteries last time!) and have some good snaps...

Pattu was delighted with the gifts - she is still fascinated with the wrappers and the boxes more than the gifts per se. She got her first Salwar suit from her care taker and loved the duppatah so much that she even wore it with her frocks and t shirts the whole day. Here's the pic of the big girl in salwar...and other snaps

A fascinating tale with brilliant illustration through 'Dancing on Walls' from Art and Anush - not just Pattu, all of us liked it. Pattu's been gazing at the moon looking for the moon people :D. The hand made dolls from Tsunamika have been saved (along with the card) - will give them to pattu when she is old enough to understand.

...and thus 'happy tired', we hugged and zzzed through the rest of the night (which was too little) and through morning only to wake up at 9 AM!