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Dec 1, 2009

Ni hao, kich me on my cheeks

I had blistered my hands very badly during thanksgiving. But went about my usual stuff since I did not feel any pain - bathing kids, doing dishes, cooking etc. And my over-smartness paid
when nish rubbed a finger to expose it very badly. Had to rush to the doc. and have been asked not to touch water much for a week !! Had I done this much before atleast my fingers will not be so badly scarred. The doc. said it may take a year for it to reach original color and it just may :-((
Reminded of a friend who always used to admire my fingers :-D He was already hooked, so he was in no way flirting and really meant it :-D and whenever I paint my nails, I think of the days when my hands were so rested not doing all these chores, so soft and beautiful. Now the wrinkled skin has totally erased such traces...
today i kissed mish mish on his tummy. The little mister asks me to not to kiss his tummy and I ask why. "becach u chud kich my cheeks". and I asked him if i can eat him. same previous reply :-)
kids and their innocence.
today also was the first day when rishu read a book for nish ! could not believe they were calmly sitting next to each other for 5 mins and doing something useful. hoping for many such moments. when rish saw a garlic in the book, he said shallots. I thought it was written on the book but he said he saw that word in the grocery shop ! This boy loves his words. He has picked up quite a few chinese words from "Ni Hao, kai Lan !" - It seems to be his favorite cartoon as of now probably because he enjoys the bi-lingual nature of the program! I was also teasing nish that anna started reading books by himself even before he turned 3 and whether he would follow suit ;-)
a happy ending to the day despite being stuck with band-aids and wrinkly skin !!

Nov 21, 2009


The baby is slowly getting to be a little boy.

Today rishu was looking at tofu and in general talking about oreo.
Nish looks at him and says "Silly boy, this is not oreo !!!!"

Was amazed when he could identify the alphabet shown on his laptop
and press the corresponding key from the keyboard. If he continues at the same pace,
he will pretty soon be familiar with all the uppercase letters :-)

Just noticed today that he has stopped telling "ni aons" and progressed to tell cayons
for crayons. I will miss the baby talk. and also many such words I still pronounce the way he used to a few days back. Now, the little boy corrects me and asks me to pronounce it right !!!

Whenever I act like crying, his face turns totally worried and he says "Mummy should not cry"
and does whatever I ask him to do. When I see his pained face, I am troubled and touched and immediately smile :-)

whenever I am alone with Nish, I kiss him so much and feel like I love him the most and whenever I am alone with Rish, I kiss Rish a lot and feel I love him the most :-)
Kids and how they entwine you !!

Nov 20, 2009

cucumber idlis and avocado dosas aInd a peaceful night

I have heard a few mothers complain about their kids not eating their veggies.
I have the totally opposite situation. of course I am very happy that my son loves hos veggies
but the problem is even for veggies free dishes like idli and dosas he needs some veggies.
Need to get him to the stage where he can relish it with chutneys ;-)
so avocados and cucumbers are a great help. I just chop them into small chunks and that becomes his veggie side. Happy child and happy mom :-)


No matter how frustrated your child makes you feel, no matter how much you scream and be mad at them , end of the day when it comes to putting your kids to sleep there is so much peace and calm in the kisses and hugs exchanged and so much comfort in putting your hands around each other. What a bliss to be a child and be so pure at heart and what an even bigger bliss to have such an experience with your child !!

Nov 1, 2009

Terrible two's and Fearsome four's

The monkey house-hold turns into a totally chaotic and unruly place often initiated by one of the duo. While Rish was mostly the mischievous one since he turned 3, he has been displaced by nish in just a year. God knows if the terrible twos are more powerful than the fearsome fours or if it is just the pitch of mom screaming and threatening that has instilled some fear in Rish.
so anyway, today nish has started throwing objects all around and thereby hitting people and objects with it. And once he does something like that, Rish too starts imitating that. And he has started attacking Rish with all his might, dragging him, pushing him , and biting him so hard and leaving deep teeth marks and a picked skin :-(Rish retaliates mostly much softer but has a lot of such soft attacks on Nish...
Sigh ! Wonder when they will get over this.
The other challenge has been Rish wants to co-sleep with us after 1.5 years of sleeping by himself...Now realize the value of the one year that passed by ;-)
Thankfully an accident on the bed has made him shift back to his room and planning to continue that story even after cleaning it to get him used to his bed..
But all this scheming and planning will take a toss during our India stay and guess it will be a rework again to get the kids used to sleeping by themselves..Sometimes I feel guilty but I do not have the time and energy to lay still until they sleep and it has been proved with them that boredom is the fastest way to fall asleep.
Now for the small things but still exciting for me stuff that they do..Rish has learnt to add using his fingers for single digits . And the 2 year difference helps me read some books for them together throwing questions of different levels to them. I showed Rish a pictorial jigsaw puzzle that had one piece missing and was happy when he picked the right one from 3 choices. Good visual perception :-)
These days he reaches out to even new people and strikes some conversation with them :-))
The favorite game at home these days is role play. Rish has labelled us some characters from caillou and i am surprised that nish comprehends the whole thing and calls us by that name too..Sometimes for lack of a character or need for one, the labeling changes and Rish can perfectly maintain the new names !!!

Nish is communicating a lot in English now and though I am not in too much favor of it, he speaks very sweetly and brings a smile to our faces :-)

"a thithu-kku venama" (Does Rishu not want it) is one of my fav. lines from what he talks as he tries to talk very sweetly and also attempts to anglicize it.
thickatheet (trick or treat)
bech u (bless u)

Is it the baby language or his sweet voice becoming even more coy at times
or just the mother's reaction, I don't know - But I find it very sweet and a reason to smile each time.

Oct 27, 2009


Sometime when I grow big, can I drive this can ?
Sometime when I am like daddy, can I wear his jeans?
Sometime when I am big, I will also drink coffee
Sometimes when I am big, can I use your laptop
Sometimes when I am big, can I work in your office?

We thought we need to just save monetarily for the kids to inherit,
but Rish has these incessant questions about all that he can use later
from us ;-))

Oct 23, 2009

Questions, Answers and Interpretations

Do you want apple or orange ? - Orange
Do you want orange or apple? - apple

Do you want toys or lego - lego
Do you want lego or toys - toys

Me and Rish laugh when nish answers like this. of course, rish is the one who has max. fun wording these questions. when rishu was close to 2.5 I used to concerned that he is not able to interpret these qs. Poor first-borns and the expectations we have from them ;-)

But slowly nish is getting there where he answers 1 or 2 qs right and though I am happy he is learning everything right he does, i feel he is becoming a bigger boy. In contrast to when I wanted Rishab to learn everything right and proper !!

Rish is in that stage where he acts as the monkey boss and teaches nish to do all naughty things such as dropping the toilet rolls in the commode, put washed vessels in the sink , trash good stuff since he knows he will be punished if he does the act.

And Nish is the perfect "adi aal"(henchman) totally following the instructions.
He is a total sweet-heart and listens to most instructions given by his parents. So I guess in order to create a balance his anna is there teaching him all these things.

Nish is in that totally cute and cuddly stage. It is amazing the way I see him connect to people and slowly I would have to share him with the world outside. Sigh !

Today I was just bored and in no mood for anything and was just surfing. It just took some silly banter and a hug and kiss from Nish and here I am happily recording my memories :-)

Sep 28, 2009

Thithab turns 4

Dear Thithu,
This is what mishy mishy calls you now. I cannot believe how the years have flown by and that you have kutty at home calling you anna :-)
We have seen you blossom in a never before way in the past year. While you amazed so many with your intelligence, your appa and I had been waiting for you to start communicating more with us. We never realized that we had to teach you to talk than to study ;-)
Till you were two, you were the silent observant kinds happy to be by yourself.
I started working from when you were 4 months old and you were such an easy baby, sleeping well, feeding decently that I hardly felt the strain.(as opposed to nish, just staying home with him was more tiring than when I worked with you !! )
It was only when Nish was born, we saw you reacting sometimes with jealousy. You did not know how to show it and started being a bit aggressive. I guess you picked that from me since I would sometimes vent out my tiredness, frustration on you. But as you learned many things, I also learned many parenting lessons and I realized how much what I practice comes back to you.
It was very hard managing with both of you when you were 2.5 and nish was 0.5 years old. He would be sleepy and you would be around and I would wait for a quiet 5 minute period so that I can leave nish on the crib. That was the time when you acted as if you understood my plight and when I would ask you to stay put with absolute conviction that you will not even understand what I meant, many times you would remain absorbed in your books and I would be successful with my attempt ;-) It used to break my heart to shove you away while feeding mish mish but then I would drop him the minute I was done and take you on my lap.
While you were close to 3 years, me and mish fell sick and it was very hard time. You had just recovered. I was too tired taking care of me and him. once i made lunch and fed u guys I used to be too tired and though nish would nap, sometimes u were awake. and I would ask you to stay silent and that I had to rest as I was sick. and you were by yourself for an entire hour those few days while I could recharge myself.
Me and you were silent partners in cheating on nish. On days when he missed his nap, or the nights that you were not sleepy I would ask you to pretend to sleep and you would stay in your room till I left nish in the crib !! and when he would refuse to eat his stuff or drink his milk, I would ask you to pretend to eat and never once did u really eat ! but it did the trick to get nish to eat. Though I have screamed, lost my temper with you for not understanding many small things that most kids would, I felt blessed that at times of real need and desperation you have not let me down.
I have always admired the way how you could really eat your food so well and neatly and SLOWLY - me and nish can never do that. and the way you crave for your veggies has made many moms jealous of me :-) I know i am very stingy with candies and junk food but you have always been nice and very few times have made it hard for me by asking those and even the times you ask, I feel you deserve it.
you are always a pleasure to teach and I have been very very happy when I see you grasp things in the first or second attempt itself. It has made my life very easy. otherwise I would have been helpless managing the home, kids and teaching you too. I wish you also become a pleasure to be with at home, not now, in a few years at least. I understand that this is your monkeying phase, that nothing can give you more pleasure than doing many silly things and these will be the memories later on and that I will also threaten you when you grow up of having such monkey offsprings ;-)
Though I am the harshest with you, I scream at you many many times, sometimes scare you out when both of you become so hard to handle, am too tired and exhausted and when you don't understand I lose my temper - I still love you so so much. Many people around say that you will be a whiz kid, genius etc. But I will be very happy as long as you are happy with what you do in life. I wish that you are filled with abundant health and happiness always. And I truly hope you will be a fine example for your little brother.

Sep 10, 2009

Mishy Mishy turns two !

Dearest Mish Mish,
Today I have been flooded with thoughts about how you have grown. From being an extremely under-weight baby to a cherubic toddler you have indeed changed. You have your own personality now and are a real charmer. You have your way with people and can just tug their hearts with your mischievous smile and cute display of your feelings :-)
You are all that we missed in your anna. It fills my heart to see how well you both make a complete package. He being the nerdy, methodical, reserved, geeky types and you being the total boisterous rowdy. We just enjoy the difference and hope you rub off a bit on each other. It just seems like yesterday when we celebrated your first birthday.
It was just at that time you showed you had a mind of your own. You wanted the spoon initially and close to 15 months you wanted to eat by yourself since anna did that. You picked the habit of having a book in your hand just because he read a lot. Initially though you pretended, it is heartening to know that you too have an interest in books. And then slowly you have learnt many good things from him. Just cannot wait for you to be potty-trained :-D
While he is the eternal thinker and dreamer, you are very aware of your surroundings. I cannot forget the astonishment when you used to help me empty the dishwasher close to 18 mths - a habit you picked from anna but what amazed me was, how you knew where all the odd vessels went - like the tea filter and the iron tavas.
And then close to two you wanted to empty the vessels and me to stack them ! My heart used to shudder to see you reach out first for the ceramic and glass vessels but you were always careful for the second or two till I reached you and took it from your hands. Another incident that surprised me was how you noticed that after finishing my horlicks, I used to reach for the remnants in the cup and lick them ;-)
I burst out laughing when I found out that one day, you emptied your water from the cup and did the same ! And today when I made my horlicks by adding milk and sugar and the powder you reached out for the spoon and gave it to me :-)
As a mark of your second birthday, you have learnt to tell your name and refer yourself by your name - michy michy.
While we sang "Happy Birthday Mishy Mishy" you were happy to sing it out for all the friends whose parties you attended. At the end of the day when me made you cut the cake, I guess you understood that it was your occasion. And you have been the happy receiver of many phone calls, basking in the attention you received.
I hope you stay as expressive like this - from screaming/singing happily when we get your favorite food, to dancing when you are happy, running for that hug and kiss just to feel good, making others notice you and reveling in that and doing something mischievous and laughing heartily - I wish they can be scenes I can watch forever !
You and anna are now like wild cats and sometimes I get confused if I am rearing a zoo or a terrorist organization the way you two mercilessly attack each other. But from the corner of my heart I really hope that you will compensate for all this by being best buddies and being there for each other when needed.

You guys have made our lives short of energy, time and money but enriched it with so much LIFE !

Jan 2, 2009

The potty training saga of Rish

I guess this is the first parental pressure ever faced !! A friend of mine has started potty training her first child from 6 months and was successful when the child turned a year. Another friend started when her daughter was 1 year old. So I was assuming that it was not a very difficult task.
I waited till Rish was close to 2 years old. My parents had just arrived for my second delivery and my dad is very patient in these kind of things. So me and him used to take turns and somehow make Rish sit on the potty before and after breakfast for quite sometime oblivious to my mom's and Ravi's voices :-) We somehow wanted him trained. But he refused to budge and all was forgotten. Then again after 3-4 months we were in India and I had enrolled him in a play school. Since most kids are trained there by the age of 1, I was hoping he would learn easily. At home again dad was determined to try his best. But after a month we gave up..The peeing was okay, he could hold. But poop, no ! He thought the underpants were meant for that.
So again all was forgotten and then we came back to the US and I waited for the magical age of 3. Many of my friends said around this age kids learn themselves and I refused to believe that my son would change. By this time I kind of got used to his patterns too and could almost accurately predict when he would stealthily poop in the diaper, many times catching him red-handed. Still he was adamant not to use the potty.
I scoured the internet even thinking of joining those online training centers
which would reveal their secret on paying some money and assuring that it would work.
Also in his school we were told that he would be promoted to the next class only if he was trained. Then I landed on this book "Once upon a potty" - By alona frankel.
Rish's obsession with books and ability to read greatly helped here. I used to read the book to him everytime he has to use the potty and he used to re-read it many times. So finally he was ready to use the potty and I was relieved. I got the feeling that he too would get out of diapers pretty soon. And ofcourse the comparison with friends helped. So by the time he was 3 years and 4 months he refused to wear diapers/pull-ups at night/ nap-time or outside thereby compelling us to make him diaper free.
We still have accidents but thankfully the carpets have remained intact with hardly any mess. I am hoping that Nish will be trained by the age of 2, but it remains to be seen. For now, he is happy to imitate Rish (with diapers on) and pull the flush.

Jan 1, 2009

Rish completes 3 years !

I guess 3 was when we saw a lot of transformations in Rishab - from comprehending, to responding to potty training. He was very correct in all his milestones but still we felt he was lagging behind in socializing and communication.
But he was very ahead in his verbal abilities and memory! So we used to be torn between that happy and worried state. And towards the close of his 3rd birthday I decided I would get him home early afternoon since Nish was 1 year old now. That made a big transformation.
Initially Rish used to repeat a lot of phrases from books and would pretty much repeat many conversations too, sometimes it was scary. But our pediatrician and my mom were my rock of support whenever I was worried. My pediatrician said since he was very ahead in certain areas compared to other kids, it was natural for him to lag in certain skills and with time he would catch up with other kids just as they would in his skilled areas and asked me to patiently wait till he was 4. And my mom used to always tell me that nothing could go that bad and perhaps he just was reserved in nature. I used to be pretty positive too but a mother always finds it hard to find flaws in her offsprings. Hubby is a more analyzing type and it was good in a way as I do not think I have that capability atleast with respect to my kids.
So many times I used to console him and be his strength but at times it would get to the peak and then I would be internally disturbed too. I think it was just 2 days when he was 3.25 years that I could not sleep for 2 days as still I was not seeing the changes that I expected to see in him. And after all that worrying, suddenly there his communication and socializing increased by leaps and bounds !!
The secret - we hid all his books. I guess that was occupying all his memory and his thoughts and kind of closed his minds. I also used to religiously do some brain stimulating exercises that any website or person suggested. Whether it was that or the mercy of the Gods, we now have a smart kid atleast comparable with other kids in areas where he was trailing before :-)