the girls finished their first dance performance in all their very fine bharatnatyam regalia. It was a great experience for them and myself.

Will post sometime

the girls performance is going on great. it is on 15th dec.

it is awesome to have girls.
I got a treat when i reached home, in the form of a homebaked Betty Crocker's brownie cake

Love it you girls

The house smelled the sweet scent of girls and cookie and cream.

We have an awesome cook and lovely maid and even awesome driver to help us with our day to day needs. So when the kids don't pick up after themselves, I say 'Well you guys want to go back to the USA, then you have to pick up these things. No one is going to do that back there. I am done picking up stuff after you.'

It really didn't help in picking up things after themselves, but they instantly had joy in their heads on hearing their beloved country US.

This went on for several months.

Tejas was telling me that he will have tonnes of homework when he reaches 8th grade and I would have to cut his extra curricular classes for which I said 'well you will be in the US then, so don't worry.'

And he was actually worried. He has begun to form very strong friendships with his school mates. This was the child who cried 4 months straight into my lap about not fitting in, not knowing cricket, hindi and bollywood and hated the school and friends.

And give him a year and he is actually worried about heading back. He said he will do till 7th here and head for 8th grade and he just wants to visit his friends for xmas in the US and to go a little early so he could say hi to Ms. Chefan. ;)

Times have changed. My love my son wants to stay in India. i have a feeling we will go to the USA and move back to India ;) !!

i have to force amrita and aishwarya to read the big books.

aishu listens to me. she is the one to be moulded into a rockstar like prema chitty. tejas is talented but he needs to be set free, and ammu will blaze her own path. she is not the one to be told what to do.

but for aishu, she can be completely moulded into a singer or a dancer or a scientist. she is so brilliant and can do anything, just like tejas.
Seeing the Visarjan firsthand was a totally awesome experience. how do people recap memories. i just cannot. anyway let me try. shiv and i went through all the lanes and bylanes of mumbai to people celebrating ganesha, dancing to loud cine music and generally having a party. there were ganeshas and ganeshas everywhere. it was an awesome sight. last year i saw a handful of nice ganeshas and i was thirsting for more. this year, especially being out on anant chaturdishi day, we saw the big guns arriving by the truckfuls. just breathtaking. i even got to see lalbagh ka raja. wasn't that something. when will tejas read ruskin bond stories and all the classics. i will force him to read it, then only he will realize the value of good literature. right now he has not read any that would count for good literature. how i miss mmc. anyway the days are changing. i will introduce him to good literature.

and then at the chowpatty itself, teh girgaum chowpatty, big big ganeshas were floating inside the water. it took till 9 am for the idol to fully sink in.

it was breathtaking as well as eerie to see the ganesha's all floating by in silence to be fully immersed. it was a sight in itself.

Only in Mumbai, yes Only in Mumbai.

Aishwarya said 'Mommy after i ate the vada they gave for breakfast my tummy is paining, but i do not want to take leave today . I will take leave on Friday as i do not have any classes that I would want to skip'. This she said on wednesday eve. Thursday rolled around. She said the same thing. Then Friday rolled around and she said 'mama remember i am not going to school today, my tummy is paining from Wednesday'.

I told her, well you can take rest on Saturday, but she wanted to rest today. So she is home playing basketball with Patti. 

I let certain things slide. Before i would count the number of hours she is not working or the days that i am paying for tuition and she is not utilizing. Now i am stopping to smell the roses. Love, love alone makes the world go round. 
Mommy Mommy

I heard my son call out to me. I looked if he came back. I had just dropped with my driver in the basement. Poor darling. He wasn't feeling too well. An area of his skin was burning with some red rashes. I put silverex, let it cool for a few hours before dressing him up. Lovely son had to go to TKD. His black belt is coming up soon. My doll son has to go and get the belt.

Anyway my son was not at the door. it was all the other noises around that had formed the needy 'Mommy Mommy son' voice, just like the clouds make up our favourite images. He was not at the door, coupled with the whiny needy gentle voice prodding at me 'Mommy Mommy'.

I wish he had come back. Is my son needing me somewhere. More that needing the I, the me, is he needing the underlying comfort a mom brings to his woebegone self. My dear son, wherever you are right now, your mom is right there with you. I say a little prayer for you. Mom cannot be there always with you, but God is and God will be, and I feel so much better when I say a little prayer for you.

Incidentally it is one of my favourite songs as well. My son I say a little prayer for you.

I just watched the whole youtube above and felt the same feeling of desperation as I always feel while watching this movie. The feeling Julia feels. I so wished she got the guy. And McDermott or whoever he is, is so sizzling. Love him love him to death. I wonder why he didn't become a big deal like Tom Cruise or someone. There is one more movie of his and I just loved watching him in that as well. He is has done his part so well in this movie, convincing to the utmost degree and never ever flinching from his love for Carmen or whatever her name is. And Julia makes all your heart crawl into a pocket and weep cuz she didn't get the guy. I wish they did this movie all over again with mcDermott or whoever he, falling all over for Julia and ofcourse Julia never wearing those baggy pants and shirts again, only feminine clothes please or sexy cut off suits !!

Oh well, i wish they did , they did. Carmen is so awful throughout the movie. Dont' you all agree with me ? ;)

Wordless Wednesday

What a child goes through, to go to school from one house and come back to another !!
Oh my dear child, you did keep telling me you didn't want to move, but i thought you were young to go through these tumultous feelings, my dear child, i see it in the picture, what i didn't see face to face. 
Every time i think about my anna, worse yet see his pictures, i just tear up as he reminds me so much of my father and all the love he has given our family. And what do i do ? I say a little prayer for him. Thank you Anna, you are the best anna that i could have had. !!
todays post. What a day , it was spent at the spa making me look my best ;)
I had a hair wash, color, pedicure and coloring the nails. all in all a well spent day making me look good ;) !!

Back to what ? - a husband who is home at the ungodly hour of 12 noon on a weekday. Back from Germany. It is so good to see husbands after long periods of absence. So the first one hour was spent without anyone trying to see if the other is trying to insult the another !! . All was well, happiness abound and love remained for a long time to come, till the little brats rushed home, mama giving one set of instructions and papa giveng another and tempers flared, horns on the forehead appeared, smoke around the nostrils. Yes, our children do this to us ? Do yours ?

Take Care
Mom dear.
You guys know, i am very worried about my little tejas. He woke up this morning and said, he is nervous that he has a lot to do. performance anxiety. so i read about it and it said it is good to have some amount. and how to alleviate the rest. The best way is to be prepared. lack of preparation is a major cause. Then you will worry how much ever you are prepared, as worriers do as they want to do their best.

Well, my dear dear Tejas, i don't want you to worry. You are the best. Every week i get to hear from your teachers how wonderful you are and the wonderful stuff you do. Yes, mommy pushed you earlier on and now i see you are pushing yourself. My darling Tejas, let us find a way to do it without anxiety, stress and all the unpleasantness. But sometimes to see the great truth, we have to undertake a lot of hardships. No pains, no gains. The milk is curdled to get the cream. So you need to see the beauty in the pain and so should i . Let me not go all soft on you like i did for a while and nothing was accomplished. All your teachers were up in arms against you for not practicing, for wasting your god given talent. Finally after much trail and error, we have come to a happy medium i think. August was tough with your school opening and with all your other practices. finally September brings a sense of understanding your timings, you and your likes. You are the most precious boy that ever walked the earth. Your sensitivity and gentleness coupled with your energy and mischievousness is a delight.

Enna thavam seidhanai Yashoda, honestly, i thank you for giving me a chance to interact with you daily, be of service to you in any small capacity i can as a mother. These years will fly by and my boy will be leaving the nest, me empty handed with just those lovely memories to fall back on.

Thank you for coming into my life, gentle soul.

May God bless you and teeter you on to higher things

lots of things to write about

1. the girls have become excellent basketball players. Aishwarya dribbles continuously till her hands fall off. She is trying to good on her left and alternate hands. Amrita is the passing queen. When she passes the ball literally flies over my head (which doesn't take much actually ;).
They want to become basketball coaches. They asked what it takes to become one, i said first you've to teach elementary school kids, then if you get good at it, middle school, high school, college, university, state team and then national team and then you will be olympic coaches. They do not want to play , they just want to start coaching right away. This is, after a few days of playing basketball in our lobby ;) Only dribbling by Aishu and passing by Ammu. If you ask Ammu to dribble and Aishu to pass, they would be at a loss. Also both are not good at baskets. And they do not want to play, but want to be coaches right away. Then i told them they can't be coaches till they are 24 and no earning money till then. Then they said they will be home and learn basketball. I said they have to earn money after they become 18 and i will kick them out of the house. This panicked them greatly and they wanted to know how to buy a house, live in a house, etc.
So then they thought for a second and said, ok we will leave in this house and i can leave, so that way i am the one who is kicked out. i told them that can be done too. then they thought for one more second and Amrita said ok we will get married so our husbands can earn. i told them papa lets me stay home only cuz i am looking after you kids, but i have to go to work too which i am.
Then they said, ok we will have 2 husbands and 1 wife, i will look after their kids. i said ok we will buy 3 flats for 3 of you. Ammu said no no , only 2 is enough, one for tejas and then one for the girls and their families. Then we will have more people and so more hands to help out and more mouths to feed. They they said we cannot accomodate their aunts and relatives as they will not have space and then they thought about their future. i told them we have a house in Chennai and a house in detroit, so not to worry and they all will have a house. they said ok we will earn and they will live off us, as they were not sure if they will be able to learn. i said don't worry, every body can earn and will find a job or invent something and their only duty is to learn now. Then i told them the wise saying of 'teach a person to fish, and not feed them fish'. And their last thought before sleeping must have been, 'we don't want to fish. We don't eat it '

Yes the three stooges happening at our place every day ;)

Loving it !!
i was just reading this post a while back and i realized how close to God i was after having come back from BV camp. Now after two months, i am almost with no God in me. The constant association with satsang is very important. To talk about Lord in the company of others, to talk with Lord and read ways to attain his Lotus feet has to be constantly held close to mind, else life will just take you away with its noise and meaningless activities.

Karara vindena padara vindam
padara vindena vinive shayantam
vatasra patrasya pade shayanam 
bala mukundam manasa smarami

The first stotram is composed ofeight verses of which the first is from the Krishna 
Karnamrutam of LeelaSukha as Dr. Sadagopan pointed out.
i return to blogging after two months !!
just absolutely love being in India. Been apt hunting these two days and guess what, they are gods and goddesses placed outside the house and i do a quick prayer to them.
it feels so good stepping into a house whose gods you are familiar with.

No wonder, Elizabeth Gilbert came to India to pray, as kone kone pe God miltha hain, and if we are aware enough, kind enough and observant enough, we can see God in everyone who is crossing by.

Ek dil chahiye that is Made In India.

Love every minute being in India !!

i am enjoying cooking, for my anna. He is visiting from Chennai. All these days, when i was young, they fed me, took care of me whenever we visited them and being abroad after marriage, no one has really visited me, the older folks who petted me and coddled me. 

Now is my turn, to repay, all their kindness and love they had for me when i visited them and when they visited my parents. 

What joy, the cooking gave me, for loved ones. 

When you think it is a chore , it is a chore. 

Do it for the Lord, 

I have been getting this a lot - 'you may not be able to do big things greatly, but you can do all little things greatly'. It is amazing to incorporate all these little sayings into your daily lives 

today, i read in the papers, an interview with ARR, and he says 'what little i do towards my spiritual side, is not enough'

What profoundity, i realised, we can never do enough of taking the Lord's name and keeping it in our thoughts for a good measure of a time. 

Like Swamiji said 'you have do these 3 20s daily - 20 minutes of japa, 20 minutes of meditation and 20 minutes  of spiritual reading'

I promised myself i would do all those, but its has been correctly 20 days, and sad to say i have not done anything '

Atleast when i blog about it, i blog about you my Lord, please grace all my thoughts, pleace grace all my actions, let me life be an offering of a petals at your feet, let all my actions be offerings of prasad and love to you, let me see you in everybody.

Like Chinmaya said 'ever remain in a state of gratefulness'

For example, you have to feed these guests, think sakshath bagavan is coming to feed from you and cook with joy. When things become a chore, it is God who is testing you, are you panning out every single test. 

Like Chinmaya said when he was giving a discourse, 'i expect you all to be grateful to me that i am giving you this vast ocean of knowledge for free, i am not getting money for it, the least i expect all of you is appreciate me for doing this inspite of my discomforts today and have come just for you'

'no if i think like that, i will expect you to be grateful to me and appreciate me and if that doesn't happen, i get disappointed , grumpy and finally sick in the mind. Instead, i am grateful you all came, you all came, so i can take the name of the lord for all these hours'

Ever remain in a state of gratefulness. 

Once namdev gets realised .. i have to take care of the adupu.

will be back later with namdev's story. it touched me in so many ways.

Taa Mommy.

when i wrote daily, i had this continuum, when something happened in real life, i would absolutely think it blogworthy and form thoughts with reference to the blog. Infact if you are an obsessed blogger, all you can think about is should i blog this or not. It was like in the days of pre-digital photography. Since you could only take a limited number of pictures, you always wondered if things were picture worthy or not and only took pictures if you thought the moment was right. Not shooting left, right and center. But we digress. So much was my obsession about should i take this pic or not, that i refused to take my camera on my backpacking trip to Singapore. Hence i do not have a single picture from my days of backpacking for a week in Singapore. All that is left are faded memories and 'I did that too', without any corroboration to the fact. Ofcourse, I am not here to convince anyone that indeed i visited Singapore, nor is it going to get me any crowing achievement, and even so, just in front of a few humans, not before the wise Lord, he doesn't care if i trekked Singapore in foot or not, he cares if my heart was pure, was it in the present, was it enveloped in love, did i stay in my dharma ? Those are the questions that he is concerned with.

Mayya veshya mano ye maam, nithyayukta upasathe I
Shradaya parayo petham, me yukthama mathaha II

The Lord said : Those who, fixing his mind on me, worship me, ever steadfast and endowed with supreme faith, these in my opinion are the best Yogis

When i was told the true meaning of Yogi, i was dumbfounded.
I had always thought a person who does yoga is a yogi

Then i was even dumbfounded when they said yoga is more than just physical excercises, but there are different forms of yoga like Bhakti, Karma, etc.
So ignorant was I.

Finally i am living my religion every day. i am trying to live the Gita everyday.

A Christian thumbs through the Bible.
Similary as a Hindu, all children should be given exposure to the Gita and then it is up to them to fly with or without it.
But if we as Hindu parents, do not introduce the Gita to them, who will ?

I came to know the Gita in my thirties, after having kids.
I come from a religious household.
They even made me byheart some parts of the Gita
But i had no idea what the Gita was. Nobody told me it was the sacred text of the Hindus.
That all the questions are answered in here, on how to live and to conduct life.

I am sure, most of us Hindu children do feel this way. We are ignorant partly because
it is in Sanskrit and we haven't kept up with the times.
We did keep up with the times in the sense, we do not practise Sanskrit anymore,
but we refused to bring along our texts with us.
And the meaning though deciphered, only a few knew.

How many Hindu families have the Gita text and open it for prayer and contemplation
How many Christian families have the Bible and open it for prayer and contemplation
How many Musilm families have the koran and open it for prayer and contemplation
How many ....

Yes, Hindus must be the minority in the above.
We did have the Gita in my house. I loved those pages as they were paper thin and almost silk like
and each page was gold bordered. it was my favourite book, but i absolutely did nothing with it.
Nobody did anything with it.

My dad was super religious.
He had his own set of books which he followed.
But we all get the point ?
People might say we do not have one book to follow like most religions.
We have a hundred texts. And i agree, all of them are as beautiful, and probably all tell us
to submit to the lotus feet of God.

Once we are in the higher reins of the Gita, they say God is just a crutch.
So that you surrender your ego, nothing is your doing but somebody else's doing and that somebody else - lets call him God.
We did not create ego, but somehow as man, we have that ego, i guess i am too sleepy to coherently put my thoughts right now. maybe later.

Anyway, coming back to the Yogi -

A yogi is one, who mind, intellect and body are all in alignment.
That is they do not contradict one another.

When the mind is enticing you to have icecream, the intellect is strictly forbidding you and the body acts according to the one or the other, mostly it listens to the mind, he is not a yogi

A yogi is one who can rein in his senses and all his intellect, mind and body act in unison.

i was awestruck when i heard the definition, not too long ago, just a few years ago, after i had my children and courtesy Balavihar, courtesy my children.

When i started this post today, i was truly a blank slate, i had nothing to write, infact i wondered what to write, but then i saw that i had not blogged for so many days, which is not the promise i made, i said, okay let me blog about that and lo, my mind wandered through hills and valleys, mountains and terrains, gorges and plateaus and words did tumble like the narrow Angels falls in Venezuela which my husband had wanted me to accompany but i did not, as i had no love for travelling those days, my love was in saving any little money we had and thinking that the workplace would close up, if not for me.

i was under a chinese boss who refused to give me a week's vacation and now i have americans who always tell me 'family first', 'throw the cellphone in the fish tank while on vacation'.

And now i believe in that. Vacation was a chore earlier with packing from diapers to bottles to now where it is all wonderful.

Anyway, time to say goodnight

take care
Seated in love
Lord, I pray at your Lotus Feet, to give me equanimity in all situations,
please let not a day go by without my being grateful to have my little ones around
let not a moment go by without me acknowledging how priviledged I am, that they chose to be born here
let not a thought go by without being loving to them
let not an action go by without enveloping them in love
let not a word go by without making them feel appreciated
let not a touch go by without caressing them in hugs
let not a sigh go by without their topmost concern in my mind
let me be immersed in my love for them
let me not forget that what i have is precious and one harsh moment cannot be replaced by a thousand tender moments as that harsh moment will be etched deeper than the tenderness.

Am i not like that ? My maid toils day and night and the minute she makes a mistake, I remember that for the rest of the days to come by.

Let me rise above my petty emotions of right and wrong, and please seat me deep in your love and my love for all humans.

Lord, open my eyes to you
open my heart to you
open my self to you
Let me know only love, just like you wanted
Let me not move away from my natural state of love
Let me be love

thank you Lord
Hari Om

How Can A Parent Be A Good Disciplinarian Without Being Harsh, Domineering, Or Controlling?

The above all is from the girls. I cannot stop admiring their cursive. After coming to Mumbai, they no longer do cursive at school, but I have asked the girls to hold on to all the knowledge that has been imparted to them till KG in MMC and they have tried to keep it as best as they could. Aren't they precious? And did you notice the Amma? I had asked them to call me that, lest we lose our roots and she has remembered it while writing that sweet note. And what with so many exclamations. Indeed they are growing. 

Bless them. Lord, make me worthy of my children. They deserve a loving nurturing mommy and help me remain calm while things go awry. Bless me with grace under fire. Thank you Lord Hari Om

The maid waltzed in with a piece of paper. She found it somewhere on the floor post Mother's Day. Tejas had never given his card to me. He said he would do it in the evening when the girls had their handsful of stuff to give. They all encouraged Tejas to give it to me in the morning. He was in another land.

Anyway this is what the maid gave me. I am just on cloud nine, after reading his letter. I quizzed every passer by, well all my children, if my son wrote this in camp. They said no no no, not at camp. Well, i am struck by thunder. Hari Om, the ways of the Lord, Tharini for sure will love this.

What more motivation and inspiration do i need to be the mom he wants me to be.

A picture speaks a thousand words

I walk into the kitchen and what do i find ? My anjali petti in a state of careful disarray. All kinnams holding all items and an extra special item a badam biscuit distributed among all 7 kinnams. I knew it must be Aishu.
Usually I would have been very mad and huffed and puffed and belittled the child, the harried person I am with a 100 things to do. but my new post camp persona kicked in and I actually admired her handiwork.

She waltzed in a few days later and asked me 'Mama, did you like it ?'
And i waxed eloquent.

But I was actually shocked. I thought she would know that this would make me mad.
Little did i know that she thought she was actually creating an artwork and not a thought about messing a neatly laid out anjali petti.

So pure is the heart of the child.

Hari Om

Mothers day 2012

will be very special to me. The twins have been planning forever what to give me. They measured my head and made a paper crown and they would hide it when i walk in the room and sneak from room to room holding it in the back.

They drew countless pictures, threw it away and drew another set of countless pictures.

They wanted me to not get out of the bed. i was to sleep with Tejas the whole day and they would make breakfast with Dad. They would make lunch with dad and they would make dinner with dad. they planned out an elaborate menu with dad. Only what i liked was to be made. They made a huge brownie cake the previous day and reserved it for mother's day.

They wanted to give me a single red rose and pestered dad to get it for them to give it to me.

I am crying as i write this. The children took such good care of me that i didn't thank them then as much as I am thinking and thanking them now, for their love.

I was happy they did all this but they needn't have. Moms are so generous that way. They just know to give and are at a loss when it is for theirs to take. My mom is exactly like that. She would get angry if we ask her to take and she would get mad if we want her to stop giving. Guess all of us children have got that from her. We do not expect anything from each other. Infact if they do, we chide them for doing it.

So coming back to my kids, it wasn't a big deal for me. But it was big deal for them. Yes, they showered me with their love and i became pure in all their love.

thank you my children and my dear hubby for making the day so special.

Taa's mom forever. 

Back From Balavihar Camp

and what am i ? A changed person, atleast a changed parent. Lots to work on the marriage front, as to stop nagging, contradicting him when he is speaking to the kids, etc, but atleast at the kids front, i can see a visible change.

I am not looking at them as something that needs to be molded, but a person with feelings of ego and respect. I have become much more calm and friendly towards them. I have let discipline take a back seat for now, nurturing them and letting them play forever instead of harping on practise and routine. Not necessarily a good thing. but what i am intending as my final result is 'DISCIPLINE WITH LOVE'. Just discipline would not cut it and for me, DWL is a hard line to walk. Probably its me who has set up this pattern, that the final scream does it, makes the kids listen, i have to transform it to them listening to me without the scream. My entire point from the moment i became a parent, or actually somewhere along is, i do not want to lose my dignity and reduce my state by screaming. How would i feel if my husband lifted a finger at me, and yet i do not give a moment's notice to myself if i have to scream or that occsional spank.

Can i elicit correct behaviour without these ugly tools ?

It has always been a challenge. And now, what i got to hear from Brni. Nidhiji, which i always wanted to do, validated by Nidhiji, is to be a friend first and then everything else.

What relations do we crave from our spouse, children, relatives, bosses.

To be a friend. Someone who loves you unconditionally without judgement . They already love you and hence you can reveal your weaknesses and despair without any cause of concern for selfimage.

That is the goal we have to seek from ourselves to give to our children.

That was a wonderful camp. Four days of bliss.

I urge all of you to join Balavihar and if you do not have kids, just join Chinmaya Mission. They have enough to cater to just the adult mind.

Please do not miss this opportunity. If you are abroad, it will start in September and hence do all your groundwork and if you are in India, it will start in June. It starts with the school year where ever you are. Even if the place is far, join it, it is worth every effort you take to reach the lotus feet of the Lord.

There is enough for the atheist as well. It is all about surrendering of the ego and God is just the crutch to do that.

Run for it

Hari Om

I just happened to like her that morning, with her hair all tumbling over her, she looked exactly like Ms. Tangled from Tangled, do you know what i mean.
I just couldnt resist clicking a picture. usually she has her front two tooth out or making piggie faces or literally blocking her face with hands, when i am clicking her. i think she thinks she is a celebrity, Afff.. so irritating. i cannot even take pictures nowadays without threatening them. Otherwise its all funny monkey faces. 
Moi : Sir, we are going to the Balavihar camp to Chinmaya Vibhooti the next couple of days and then their old school starts from May 7th. So we will not be able to have these daily classes that we have had these past two weeks.
Sir : Sure, call me back when you come and we can set up an evening time for the classes twice a week or however you want
Aishu ; No, I want to stay in French
Sir ; What do you mean ?
Me : She wants to continue French classes
Aishu was nodding vehemently. This was the girl, after the first day, took one look at the Sir and shallowly said he doesn't look good and all suave, and hence will not be categorically taking classes from him. Give me a lady teacher she had said.
But Mr. B has so skillfully with his infinite wisdom of handling kids, had made French fun while learning it in the process and the kids actually were looking forward to their regular 9.30 AM classes.

So the kids love it and so do i. I find it exotic enough to love it.

Anyway we will be going to the Balavihar camp. Will give you guys an update once done

Take Care
Au Revoir

It is time to ramble again and ramble i must as i want to keep this ball rolling. Okay you get the drift. You've read the ball rolling on day one and then you read about the ball rolling on day 2 and then you really don't want me to write about the ball rolling on day 3 as you can very well see, that the ball is rolling and hence I, in all my right senses should not make a post out of it.

I actually enjoyed writing yesterday's piece, okay i enjoy rambling, but it came with a sense of freedom as i was addressing you guys as well. That i didn't mind rambling for my audience and that fact that I have the temerity to expect an audience and to write for them. And the fact that i write what i want, for my audience as well. That is incredible freedom. Not only am i writing for myself but I am willing to show my rambling to my audience without any awkwardness. Now i call that real freedom, to be real even among the unreal (that is you folks).

I guess my confidence is increasing, not necessarily in my writing, but about myself, that i am ok to write this rambling piece of xx and not have a problem with you guys reading it.

And somehow today i did read my para post before writing this, so the para's are coming to me in the nick of time to leave a para.

I guess that is enough rambling for one day ?

Thank you for reading this post ;)
I cannot believe another day went by. I actually thought i blogged today. Well, i do not have to blog every day, but what happens is then i do not blog on any day, so thought might as well keep the ball rolling. i am that kind a girl where inertia rules me. And i have started countless things in my life. And even my best friend calls me that - Jack of all trades, Master of none, and I am doing everything in my power to stop my fickle mind from starting all these innumerable classes that are available for our very own little tots. Once a nice lady said i should space my writing, paragraph it. Do you guys actually do that while writing, as i see now, as i am writing, things pour and i just write. i just do not start a new para or a line or anything like that. But after that poor soul left me this kind message to space my writing, so it is actually legible, i try to keep that in mind, when it comes to mind of course and that is what just happened. that thing of spacing came to mind and i thought it was actually blogworthy, as try as i might, try as it might to come to my mind, i do it at the end of my writing, i go to phrase my paras. How do you guys do it ? Do thoughts appear to you in para's and stanzas. Well, stanzas do appear to me but never paras.

Oh well, now that i am going back to my original subject, this para actually just came automatically. I didn't have to force it at all, and a lot of times you might see my I as i, as my shift key is in very bad shape, right from the time i bought this machine, can you imagine that. I payed close to a ransom to get this machine and it has a splotchy shift key which has to be pressed right in the middle, to get a capital out of it. And also the sound system on it is pretty bad. After the first two songs, the audio kind of gets cracked. There is nothing like adversity to sit up and prove one's self, to get one out of this comfortable rut. What do we need to get out of this rut ? A little jolt from our comfortable existence ?

I guess it is enough rambling for one day, don't you think ? ;)
AA have begun their french classes. Infact today is their third class. They were super nice, then became super naughty during class, as has become the pattern nowadays. Alamelu mami do not want to do anything with them anymore. They are just not behaving. So je m'appelle Aishu. Et toi ? Even i want to learn with them so we all girls can converse in French. i better go sit with them instead of browsing.

Tej is off to an IPL Match with dad and the cuz.

I really do not like to be without my husband on a Sunday night. It depresses me to no end.  So i did the next best thing or actually the first best thing, call my favourite person in the world - my mom.

Wow, don't we all have so many favourite , mom, dad, sis, bro, spouse, kids, friends and the pets ?
We are indeed very lucky. Or visit a favourite store or joint or hit the gym or reach out to the favourite song, movie or radio show. Or indeed reach out to our favourite blogs and youtube videos. Oh wow, we do have so many favourite things we could do. Now, this certainly reminds me of  - these a few of my favourite things.

When the dog bites
When the bee stings
When I'm feeling sad
I simply remember my favorite things
And then I don't feel so bad

Not one day goes without me screaming at the kids. Though i am finally begun to see light. I have been seeing the light for quite sometime but looks like the I'm almost at the end of the tunnel. It feels like i have found some purpose in all these parenting days. since the kids do not want me any more, i just feel like they are not as important and i spent all my waking moments only thinking about them. Like there was no me, no tomorrow.

Only everything belonged to the children. Every penny earned was best spent on the children. Literally everything was my children. But of late, i feel like i have become quite selfish. i am actually starting to think about me. I actually feel i could go to the salon and to the gym in their time. This believe me, was unthinkable a few weeks back. a few months back. Am not sure how this happened, but oh yes, probably i do, or may be its just a theory.

Everyone around me dresses super well and are actually super groomed. So me with my flabby self was not cutting out anymore. And my husband drilling into me to leave the kids alone and that i do not have a life and hence clinging on to them is making them miserable and me also a miserable person. Then the kids not wanting to hang out with me, but with their friends rather.

And all this prompted me to loosen up my hold on the kids ever so lightly every day that after a few months now, I am actually leaving them to spend two hours on their own, while i go around doing my thing. Also probably my philosophy in life is also changing.

I want them to grow, to make mistakes and to fall and me to be there, when they need me. I want them to live their life. i do feel selfish if i am not with them 24 hours, but i think i am at a point that I would be really selfish, unwanted and uninvited if i am with them 24 hours. How quickly the tables have turned. My son all of 9 years, i didnt even know when he didn't need me any more as i had the twins to look after. Now that my twins turned 7, I only see this closed door and i am supposed to knock and wait, till i am allowed to enter or talked to, at the door.

Oh, i just feel so awful !!

The twins are off school. They just threw me to the lions just like the Remeber the time video. They are the most beautiful adorable set of twins i've come across. Now mama has to be just nice to them. That is all. And teach them tamil, french, chess, and everything else in between. 

Earth Day Celebrations

Impressive to say the least. The Earth Day was celebrated with such fanfare, i was so impressed with the school's organization. The discipline in how the kids stood, entered and exited on stage. How they managed to do all this, without wasting study time, but as when time was available. This year is the school's centenary. They want to keep the mood festive throughout this year. So we will be treated to a once a month wonderful show put up by the kids. What a way to join this very prestigious school. 

Writing and Speaking the Mother Tongue

Question: How different are the written and spoken forms of your first language? If you want children to become familiar with their first language, which form would you look for in children's books - formal or informal? Why?

 Tamizh is my first language and so is my husbands. So no confusion there, as to what first language to impart on the poor little devils we planned to incarnate. All this tamasha and hoopla arise once the spawn appears as a squeeling ball of flesh. Till then, the couple or atleast me in this case, feigned headaches when the spouse wanted to go to the temple religiously every Sunday for the abhishekam, but no sooner the progeny appears, there is Suprabatham by our dear MSS ringing in a new day with as much regularity as a new day being born. The tamil kural and thirukaral given monumental importance like the UN discussing issues of world importance.

Being in the USA did not help. I spoke in Tamizh and my son continued to speak in English. Well, for starters my son was a late bloomer and by the time he spoke, he was 3.5 years old. So nonetheless we were just happy with him speaking at all. And then I had my neighbour’s child spouting Tamizh words inspite of just the dad being Tamizh. On further quizzing, the mom said that no special effort was laid down upon, its just that she was naturally good at it. Later I did come to know that incessantly watching Tamizh movies and listening to Kollywood songs actually do help to learn a language ;).So there are more ways than one to skin a cat, or in this case to drill a language.

I often felt the need for having formally learn Tamizh. I learnt to read it at 12 years of age, as I was desperate to read Kalki’s Ponniyin Selvan. My perippa would borrow a volume from the Port Trust library with a looming deadline on it. Thus I began reading Tamizh in a hurry after my perimma had sufficiently lured me into the web of Ponniyin Selvan.. And ofcourse having lived all my 12 years in TamizhNadu definitely helped even though I had never formally learnt Tamizh in the classroom. Somewhere along the lines, I just fell in love with literature. It is so wonderful to identify what you love. I have this incredible love for literature and music with no special skill or talent in them to write home about, or well, just write about. And ofcourse as a parent, you want to set all your wrongs as your child’s right. And needless to say I want him to research tamizh ancestory, literature, the works, love the tamizh mann, tamizh makkal, and everything tamizh.

The first real serious education happened quite accidentally. When my devlish spawn started his carnatic music class, I just happened to have my very old rusty dusty copy of Panchapakesa Iyer’s geetham book in tamizh. In those days, probaby they didn’t print it in English, so much so that I was shocked when I saw all the fellow students of my son having an English copy. So my son’s first exposure to the tamizh alphabets were our very own Panchapakesa Iyer’s Sarali Varisaigal. At first he was limited to the Sa Ri Ga Ma Pa Dha Ni, but once he reached the geethams, by force, coercion, sternness and with very less amount of nicety, he just began to read tamizh and yet it wasn’t tamizh. It was Sankrit or Telugu he was reading in Tamizh.

 So broadminded was my son’s school headmaster that he insisted all the children know their mother tongue and he would urge me to get tamizh books for the USA library. It is wonderful to come across Tulika books and we will definitely be buying some books for my children.

My three children, or for that matter, most children are exposed to the colloquial language of their mother tongue and that would be the best form of language to be written in the children’s beginner book series. First get them engaged with what they already know and then we can slowly introduce the rest of the intricacies, beauty and formality of our language.

the above post was for Tulika's blogathon.
Nowadays i read blogs where everyone has said that less than impeccable english is an assault to their eyes. I used to feel that way too, but also nowadays, I can't keep my pen straight and write a few lines off it, which when reread over is full of grammatical and syntactical errors that even I cannot read my own writing without getting miffed and chaffed about it, but guess what too lazy to go back and change the already written post. When words flow faster than your hands can fly through the keyboard, some of the words do get scruffed and bruised and do look slain and beaten.

Well, shall provide more care to write apropos from today.

Yesterday was my girl's birthday. For the first time I was on a high without being drunk. I literally was on a high. I guess people feel that flushed kinda way while or after giving a speech, after attending or even better, performing a rock concert, probably even a carnatic concert. It was incredible.  I just realised, when I am feeling a little high, I used the I word a whole lot. Everything just looks incredible, feels incredible and is actually really bloody incredible. And i guess my husband borrowed it from me, when he heard it a couple of times.

The party was just so freaking great, partly because the game hostess needed some loud head banging music and I happened to pull out my pre-marital collection of  english songs, which I had last listened to, during my pre-marital days and playing all the songs produced an incredible high for me. Also seeing my lovely dolls jumping and prancing and enjoying themselves, while i danced away to glory to my own music, was the most wonderful feeling I have had, in a long time to come.

To more parties

With much love
Taa's mom

Mumbai's beauty

For every unscrupulous fellow, you meet 10 honest fellows in our dear Mumbai. It is just a matter of making up your mind. When i left the States, I just decided I am going to enjoy my ride her in Mumbai and inspite of seeing the dead rats on the streets, the dirt and the stink, I have a hard time thinking bad of Mumbai. I want it to so desperately work. As TaaDad calls it 'living in the bubble' life is great in Mumbai. There is nothing to worry about. You have a cook coming in, a maid , a car washer, a mali , a driver, couriers and one of the best options is 'Cash on Delivery' if you are weary about giving your credit card details on the net.

Coming back to the title of the post, I gave a 500Rs note instead of a 100 Rs to the delivery boy, the store owner calls me and returns the 400 Rs.

And another part is we never have to tip these delivery boys, ever. I initally tipped 5Rs, 10 Rs, and noticed my cash was disappearing faster in Mumbai than in the States, so i stopped tipping. But after the above incident, my heart went out to these honest fellows who work day and night and don't make an extra buck by hook or crook, and so i decided to tip the next delivery boy who came in half an hour later, as i ran out of curds, so i called out to my dear Benzer store for the same. So i give a 50 Rs note and four 10 Rs notes thinking that makes 80 bucks, and fish out a 5 Rs coin and hand it out to him and shut the door. What happens, the bell rings again. I cursed the door bell and lo i find the same guy, who knows i have tipped him out of the normal, and yet, he returned the 10 Rs note, telling him i gave him 90 instead of 80. He could have easily pocketed the 15Rs as they were all singles and the store owner nor me are going to be anymore the better with the knowledge, but he decides to give the 10 Rs. My heart went out.

It was almost like the Gods were telling me to tip all these wonderful delivery boys. 
a few years back, Tejas would be very upset with Amrita and almost hate her for everything gone wrong at that moment. He would say 'she troubled me for 4 years' he would say even when he turned 8.

Now the tide's finally changed, hopefully for good. Nowadays Amrita openly proclaims Tejas is her best friend since we other girls in the family, Aishu and myself are her bitter enemies. Mom tells her to do stuff she doesn't want to do and she looks upon Aishu as her competitive little sister who she has to one up all the time. I try to foster good things between them, but sometimes i forget and in a selfish way of making my life easier, i chide her and openly wish she would be as easy as Aishu. Aishu is no easy cake to walk on either. Yes, she is more tolerant. less demanding, but she is not so in certain other places where Ammu takes it easily.

Well, this is why i should blog more. I hate chronicling. I dislike looking back on life. i do not like bittersweet memories which make my nose quiver and make me all dreamy and teary eyed. I like the present and i look forward to the future, but i just do not like to delve in the past. It is over and done with. Happy and sad memories. i do not like looking at pictures as they are very nostalgic. Just don't. How about you guys ? Are you the same way ? 
i am too zen for all these moments in my life. that is why i do not have any writing fodder. For example. My kids have just joined this new school and this is our first day we decide to try to the school bus.I reach there with my kids in tow, and guess what, this mom is a little peeved that my kids got off just before her bus stop, probably now that a bus stop is added and her kid is going to be dropped a minute late from now on. 


Generally though giver of knowledge in a systematic fashion is known as teacher,
in our tradition, he is also on certain occasions, he is called Guru.
So what is the distinction between the two ?
Read on .....beautifully explained.


A teacher takes responsibility of your growth
A Guru makes you responsible for your growth 
A teacher gives you things you do not have and require
A Guru takes away things you have and do not require 
A teacher answers your questions
A Guru questions your answers 
A teacher helps you get out of the maze
A Guru destroys the maze

A teacher requires obedience and discipline from the pupil
A Guru requires trust and humility from the pupil 
A teacher clothes you and prepares you for the outer journey
A Guru strips you naked and prepares you for the inner journey 
A teacher is a guide on the path
A Guru is a pointer to the way 
A teacher sends you on the road to success
A Guru sends you on the road to freedom
A teacher explains the world and its nature to you
A Guru explains yourself and your nature to you 
A teacher makes you understand how to move about in the world
A Guru shows you where you stand in relation to the world 
A teacher gives you knowledge and boosts your ego
A Guru takes away your knowledge and punctures your ego
A teacher sharpens your mind
A Guru opens your mind 
A teacher shows you the way to prosperity
A Guru shows the way to serenity 
A teacher reaches your mind
A Guru touches your soul 
A teacher gives you knowledge
A Guru makes you wise

A teacher gives you maturity
A Guru returns you to innocence 
A teacher instructs you on how to solve problems
A Guru shows you how to resolve issues 
A teacher is a systematic thinker
A Guru is a lateral thinker 
A teacher will punish you with a stick
A Guru will punish you with compassion

A teacher is to pupil what a father is to son
A Guru is to pupil what mother is to her child 
One can always find a teacher
But a Guru has to find and accept you 
A teacher leads you by the hand
A Guru leads you by example 
A teacher instructs you
A Guru constructs you
When the course is over you are thankful to the teacher
When the discourse is over you are grateful to the Guru 
When a teacher finishes with you, you graduate
When a Guru finishes with you, you liberate


We went to Lonavla today.
We had breakfast and lunch at Kamat's restaurant
We went to the wax museum and then to karla caves
Then we did Della Adventure for the rest of the day which was a lot of fun.
We ate at Creme della which was a very nice experience.
We would like to come back again to Della Adventure with our cousins.
the lameness of a post. How fleeting thoughts are? why blog at all. Doesn't make sense to me. The one thing i thought about at one moment is not the same the next moment. i am seeing this lovely pigeon out of my balcony. it is looking around almost furiously which makes me think it is trying to see with both eyes. i wonder if its head and beak come in the way of taking in a vision with both eyes. lovely red color making a circle over the black pupil and its actively looking around with its grayish green neonish of a neck color dazzling in the sunlight. its feet with claws look ready to take a flight, much to my consternation as what will i write about if my subject takes away into the blue expanse of the Mumbai sky. The feathers finish of their grayish color with a thick border of black much like a saree's border and the bird has left has my building, crashing my enthusiasm to write anymore. I just don't feel the need to write. The pen is the heaviest object to lift and my eyelids are the heaviest to heave open when it comes to writing nowadays. I am trying to recreate the years when i loved to write, actually wrote stuff which i loved the best and after so many years having flown by in between, writing is just not the same anymore. the laughter, the mirth and joy and the life has disappeared from my writing, that it tastes insipid and feels just vapid, empty , just to fill in the pages. The most repeated advise i hear is not to write while only being inspired but just writing like a practise and we all know that practice maketh perfect. Maneuver, - i have to teach my son the spelling for his Maars spelling bee.

Okay the moment is broken. The magic is lost. My pen is stolen and my muse has disappeared. Thus comes my writing to an end.

With much love and much hope to discovery
Mommy Dearest


is the hardest for me to do. To have a routine. So from today , i am going to include all the routines i want, one by one. 

Chennai trip

was eventful. Stressing out on changing the kids's school.

Body Shop Whitening Shiso

Bought the entire .. well not the entire range of products, but most of it
By recommendation of my beautician. 
Face Wash
Moisturizer with SPF
Night Cream
Make Up Cleaner

I've used the products for one day and already my skin is peeling. Lets see what happens.

Still having a cold.
Still have not signed up for the yoga class, Y wanted me to.
Still having the same small tank for the fishes.

By the way, the catfish died. Didn't want to announce it yet. Felt lazy or felt sad or felt incompetent.
It floated upside down a couple of times. Each time we thought it was dead and tried to fish it out with a net and it swam away. We were hopeful the last time around, but no such luck. We were actually able to fish the dead catfish out with much success about which no one was happy with. I should have guessed. It never understood when we dropped food on the top of the water. It never came up. I was somehow hoping it would be getting those food when the food reached down.

I guess it is not a tropical fish, to eat tropical food. I need to research about catfish, what kind of a fish are they. I took their life too lightly. I just sent Tejas to pick a fish. I expected the shopkeepers to show judgement when I myself a mom, didn't show any judgement by sending Tejas to get a fish, thinking the shopkeepers by now will know the kind of fish i have and the history associated with us.

I need to get a bigger tank for the orange and red fish. They have no space to swim and are still most of the time. Atleast let me remove some of the plants that is taking up too much space.

10 Ways to Wake Up Beautiful

10 Ways to Wake Up Beautiful

1. Get an Early Start

Make a habit of washing your face a few hours before bed. If you wait until you're tired, you're more likely to blow it off -- allowing "toxins and dirt to stay on there all night," says dermatologist Laurie Polis of N.Y.C. Another consequence? You miss the best time to treat your skin. "At night there's more blood flow to the skin's surface, and there's nothing else on your face to interfere with absorption," Polis says.
Try: Neutrogena Deep Clean Relaxing nightly cleanser, $7; at drugstores.

2. Sleep on Your Back
Note to Audrey Hepburn fans: Lying on your stomach is bad for "beauty sleep." The average head weighs 7 to 8 pounds -- a lot of pressure to be putting on your face every night. In fact, many dermatologists say they can tell what side of the face people sleep on by the number of wrinkles there.

3. Get a Lift
Sleep with your head elevated on two pillows, or put the headrest area of your bed on 2- to 4-inch pieces of wood. Gravity helps lymph and blood flow so fluid won't accumulate, Polis says.

4. Save Money, Not Wrinkles
At night you don't need to worry about eye treatments smearing your makeup, so slather on the richest formula you can. Polis swears by Aquaphor: "It conditions lashes and hydrates the delicate eye skin really well."
Try: Aquaphor Healing ointment, $9;

5. Sneak a Glow
Mix a drop of self-tanner into your night cream or use a cream that contains a bit of tan-producing DHA.
Try: Clarins Radiance-Plus self-tanning cream, $52;

6. Avoid Carb Face
To wake with defined cheekbones, eat a high-protein, low-sugar dinner (try salmon and asparagus, a natural diuretic). Skip the rice, pasta and potatoes. "When our diet's high in glycemic carbohydrates, our features take on a soft, doughy appearance," says Connecticut dermatologist Nicholas Perricone.

7. Wrap It Up
To minimize A.M. frizz, sleep on a satin pillowcase or put your hair in a silk scarf. "Those fabrics are much softer than cotton, so there's less friction," says Harry Josh, a John Frieda stylist.

8. Find Your Inner Ballerina
Pile hair into a twist on the top of your head (use a scrunchie to avoid crimping). "In the morning you'll have major volume and beautiful waves," Josh says.

9. Turn on the Hair Conditioning
Sleep with a moisturizing treatment in damp hair overnight. We like Philip B. Katira Hair Masque, but any rich conditioner will do. Rinse in the morning.
Try: Philip B. Katira Hair Masque, $40;

10. Pop a Rooster Pill
Trust us, we were skeptical. But after swallowing two Wake Up on Time pills at 11 P.M., we found it much easier to get out of bed seven hours later. Created by a sleep-deprived single mother, the pills contain an energizing blend of thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, vitamins B6 and B12 and guarana-seed extract. It's formulated with a coating that releases ingredients into your bloodstream toward the end of your last sleep cycle, so you wake up feeling clear-headed, not fuzzy.
Try: Wake Up On Time, $30/40 tablets;


I've settled into a nice rythm. After browsing my favourite bloggers, i make an effort to write something on my blog too. Let the trend continue. 
Tejas is the lead singer for some mini function in the school. My heart swells with pride.


So Tejas went fishing yesterday and came back with a catfish. the catfish did a circling of the bowl in a split second my heart stopped. On later quizzing, he told it swam the fastest and that's why it was his prime choice.

It actually does have whiskers and its favourite jaunt is inside the bridge, much to the anguish of the TAAs.
Ammu is sick today. First it was Shiv. He was coughing straight for two months. Then it was Tejas and myself. And now its all the girls in the family. It is some kind of contagious cough that takes forever to clear and does not succumb to any medication. I was glad the girls didn't fall prey but is not true anymore. They are coughing away to glory. Tomorrow is a holiday due to election day. 

Feb 14th Valentines Day

Tejas finally had a good practise session at home. I told him in no strict terms that we are getting up only after practise is done. Have to come up with today's timetable for the kids. Somehow i have to reduce the number of classes. They are getting to be too much. We really worked hard yesterday. 

Have to up the music practise for girls. They hardly get to sit to practise at all. It is so much fun visiting a.mami. The kids practically think it is their house. Tejas loved the laddus she gave yesterday and wanted to get the recipe. Mami is just so amazing. She loves the kids. Infact Tejas loves to sing only cuz of mami. 

Fishy tales

So Teju's fish also died. Everyone went around asking 'Why, Why, Why ?' and that too, to me, like the fish wrote me a suicide note or a plea for help. Well, technically it is true that they should ask me. Ain't i the mommy of the fishes, and if they don't ask me, who else will they ask me. Including the pater. He had his accusing eyes fixed on me to get to the bottom of the dead fish in the tank.

 Oh well.. the previous owners had it for a year and had handed them over to me with loving care and now two are dead. Not only that, we had to buy Aishu a new bowl for her new fish, as it was attacking the new orange fish after its tiny fish of Ammu's died. Now the two fish seem to be at peace. 

Now its Tejas's turn to buy a fish. He has been after me to buy a male and breed fishes. But i had done that already and no desire to do one more. 

We had 40 fishes in a 10 gallon tank at one time in the States, with just me to look after. But he is going to select a fish and he is going to make sure its going to be a male. And i have to stop him ;).  

We've been having a fish bowl with 3 fishes, a black, an orange and a gold. The tiny gold one died. It was Ammu's. We will be getting her one more fish. When i read all these blogs, i feel like with my english and previous blogs that i've read, that i should be writing too. Like they say talent is dime a dozen but only a few lay the time and effort to bring it out. but I know our end goal - is to seek god, is to seek peace, all these just help pass the time.  Mama and mami are visitng us. Its been fun.
I have so many blogs now, that i am confused as to what to write where. The need for the hour is consolidation. One is going to be a journal of taa's life and times. This is predominantly going to be my feelings as a parent . i have two blogs to figure out their meanings and purposes. 
Tejas is showing signs of recurring asthma. Shiv has been coughing for a month now and so has Tejas for two weeks. Once on asthalin, he did much better. Trust this is a one time episode and he has not become prey to the Mumbai pollution.

Aishwarya is on a winning streak.
She came first in elocution
She came second in story-telling
She has been selected for the second round of Math Olympiad
She has been chosen for a drawing competition and she submitted a fantastic drawing for it.

Tejas has been selected for Science Olympiad second round
He has been enjoying TKD so much, he is breaking things at home, loves to kick and trying to do the splits and different kind of exercises. very heartening to watch.

Ammu is amazing.
Her goal is to turn in work first, doesn't matter correct or not
She loved the Hindi class.
She loved the drawing class and insisting on having it. She is so goal driven, that she if we place a carrot in front of her, she will do anything to get it.
she is simply amazing, my barbie doll like all my other two.

I am so blessed, Enna thavam seidanai, yashodha, engum nirai para brahmam amma yendra azhaika, yenna thavam seidannai.