Tuesday, 7 November 2017

Saturday, 7 October 2017

New Me

When in school, I had read an Akbar and Birbal story I still remember. Akbar challenged Birbal to show him the most beautiful child in his kingdom. Birbal chose a snotty wailing poor baby from a construction site. Akbar felt slighted, till he observed the baby's mother run to console the child, using the sweetest endearments for her perfect little one. In the end he agreed, that every child seems to be the most beautiful one to his or her mother.
Now I am totally this kind of mother. I find K very pretty when she agrees to wear a hairband, very innocent when she searches for me with sleep filled eyes, very  entertaining when she blabbers in a tune, and very smart when she remembers my instructions.
This also makes me kind of a bore. Oh, the many times I catch myself carrying on and on about the silliest thing that K would have done, despite the glazed eyes and stiffled yawns of my hapless listeners. I mean, every person in this world learns to walk, talk, eat, drink and dress up. There is hardly any novelty at all. But yet, there is! I have never seen anything as fascinating as K growing up and doing things for the first time.
But since the socializing season is upon us, what with Diwali and catch-up vacations coming up, I did work towards becoming socially acceptable again. I read up on current affairs, caught up with popular YouTube videos, watched some episodes of Game of Thrones, ironed my clothes and practiced my smile. However, I wouldn't say it's working. In the few social interactions I had today, with the neighbour who opened the door to throw trash, to the electrician who came to replace the bulbs, to the newspaper boy who knocked to collect his dues - each of them had to carry a K story back.
So I have done the most practical thing to do: I have stuffed this one too into my bag of Abnormal Years of a New Mother, which is already crammed with Not One Night With Uninterrupted Sleep, Toys And Utensils Popping Out Of Every Corner, Long Hours Of Lunch And Dinner and Road Trips Without A Nap.
I don't know if the others have come to terms with the new Me, but now, at least I have!

Meanwhile, with the 18 month old:

- K goes on her first train journey, to Chennai by Shatabdi.

We then did a road trip to Pondicherry to meet Mansee and Satya.

- my nephew Ashwin had his janev ceremony in Chennai, and K was introduced to Appa's side of the family. 

Wednesday, 13 September 2017

Happy homecoming

One year ago
A gloriously beautiful year has passed by, since our daughter from our heart came into our lives. With her first smile - a whole hearted beam that she bestowed on us when she saw us - she filled us with parental love that we didn't know we had in us. With her innocent look, she erased our years of pain and loss - we rejoiced for the first time after appa's passing. With her grace, she ended family stalemates, and aunts and uncles and cousins and nephews and nieces reconnected to enjoy her presence. With her charm, she won the adoration of our neighbours, from the garbage picker to the snobbish lady next door. As she grows up, she is making us see beauty and entertainment and joy in everyday things, in everyday activities and everyday relationships.
God bless you, our dearest light and life. Stay blessed and happy, always!

Tuesday, 12 September 2017

Milestones Many

Hitting, spitting, throwing...our dear 17 month old is hitting milestones all over the park! As tough as that mind sound, it is fascinating to see her grow up and figure out the world around her. She is learning the art of pissing off and wooing back, flinging stuff around and collecting them, and making friends with her trademark Hi's now supplemented with Anna Akka Avva Aunty (mostly wrongly attributed, but its funny how she has figured out that sexy young women - whether on posters or in person - should be called Akka).
However, it has not been the easiest for us to bear. Our time with her leaves us stressed out, exhausted and angry. Add to it the external pressures: Is she toilet trained yet? Why is she so thin? Why do you let her sleep in the mornings? Why is she still on the bottle? Sigh! And adult life is no fun either with work pressures and traffic woes and a barely-there social life. Conscience Keeper and I were having bitter fights for the most inane of reasons - till we resolved a couple of days ago to Stay Calm and Carry On. We realized that most of the aggression that K is showing is not just a phase, but an imitation of our own juvenile behaviour. So now we are taking our own baby steps as responsible parents - using a soft voice and low tone around her, speaking politely with each other and smiling a lot.
In other things:
- We moved to a new address.
While we loved our old pad, our landlord, and the one neighbour we were friendly with - it was not the most child friendly of places. We have now shifted to an old and old fashioned apartment complex teeming with kids, and all the joys of gated community living. I can hear K playing ‌in the common park downstairs right now and it makes me happy for her (and also relieved for myself to have her out of my way for a while).
Goodbye, Old Home. Thank you for all the memories!
- K made her first stage entry
At the Ganesha Habba, K took the stage and did a little dance, surprising us all by her sudden wriggling of bottom in tune with the beat. We don't let her watch TV or take her to movies, so bum-jiggling I conclude is clearly a natural form of dance.

Ganesha Habba at Home

- Everyone's moving
Amma has moved to Mumbai, P and P have moved to the US and her parents to Attibele. My old gang of babysitters have disappeared, and left me in despair.

Some pics:
Swinging with friends - Anagha and Aashi

An attempt to potty train

An attempt to use sippy cup

An attempt to write

Rakhi celebrations

New hair clips (she never feels happy wearing those)

Chatting away

With Anya

At Pratibha's housewarming, before P and P left for the US
Aarti and Prithvi came down for a visit

K's first pani puri, as we took shelter in the rain under his umbrella


Friday, 8 September 2017

Potty training

Clearly not getting anywhere!

Friday, 30 June 2017

A holiday, and more!

A vacation, finally! I am not yet ready for an 'us-only' holiday with K, but a trip with friends was explored - and it turned out to be very doable. Anurag and Reema were visiting from Kanpur with three year old Atharva and we went to Masinagudi's good old Jungle Hut for the weekend.
We stayed in their tent house and it was warm and cozy and ideal for late night gupshup in the balcony. We took a nature trek up a hill with K and a random jeep safari one evening where we spent an hour breathing diesel fuel.
K had her first swim, saw her first tiger (strolling alongside our car while we were heading to the morning jungle safari where we didn't spot anything but peacocks and bisons), and displayed an enhanced interest in eating when on the swing. The kids did fine, chasing each other around and throwing tantrums in turn.

In other milestones
- K has learnt to get bored

- K's first swim - which thanks to a ball became bearable (It was also a memorable way for daddy and baby to celebrate Father's Day!)

- K has learnt to pray. In fact she is a talented God finder, spotting gods and godly saints in the darkest nooks and corners, doing a namo-namo/jay-jay and sometimes adding a padmasana with a flourish.

- K plays teacher at Jaya Atte's tuition class

- K has started to eat on her own (sometimes when The Mood strikes her)

- She is mighty possessive about her biscuit

- She also likes to hang out inside cupboards

- I have one willing listener to my songs, but that is about to change. K has begun to indicate with her eyes when she wants a change in song, and sometimes I have to try some 30 odd songs, before she settles.

Tuesday, 30 May 2017

Saying it like she means it

Woke up this morning - K turns 14 months - to find her wriggle out of my rather suffocating cuddle, look at me sternly and gesture NO. Conscience Keeper was asleep, so she even added a SHHH! for effect. My baby is developing a mind of her own!
We just concluded a fun trip to Pune, to attend Urvazi's wedding and also catch up with friends and their babies. Spent the weekend holiday with Sandy and Mansee, enjoying the love and good food Sandy's lovely mom heaps on us each time we visit. M's had a baby too who is all of five months  - we had to literally police K's movements else she would sneak into the baby's room to give him a hug (or use the telephone she had a huge fascination for). Our friends from Mumbai came down for a night and that was fun too. However, the long taxi rides were taxing our patience, but more so for K who hates sitting in a car, who spent her time inventing new and pretty irritating tricks to keep herself busy, the worst being spitting on our faces and practicing her whines.

Urvazi and her mom with us during a pre-wedding get together. 
Us at the wedding - my first Parsi wedding
The happy couple
Being indulged by Sandy's mom


On a high giraffe with Triv

With Aadit

With Anu and Triv

Before heading to Pune, we had a wonderfully busy time hosting people at home. Teju came to meet K a week ago, and Bonti and Aaliya came to spend a couple of days with us at Amma's home in Hosur. K is very entertained at Hosur, what with many kids in the neighbourhood and amm'a constant pampering.
With Aaliya

Soaking up the sun

Playing with Bonti Aunty

Pampered by Teju Aunty who visited us from Mumbai
This May, she also joined us to celebrate Conscience Keeper's birthday where she clapped on cue and wasn't given any cake. (Yeah, we are mean)

In other milestones...
- Many A-B-C books are being bought - however, they are so intellectual that we have saved it for K's teen years. Under pressure to toilet train K, I picked up a Potty book. K seems to love the book, now I am hoping she imbibes its lessons as well.

Once Upon an Alphabet, Quentin Blake's beautifully illlustrated ABC and Leslie Patricelli's Potty
- K enjoyed her first bus ride
KIAL bus ride from airport to Jayanagar

Learnt Dandiya steps

Helped in shopping
At Ample Store in Jayanagar

- Tied her hair in a 'juttu' with flowers

- and more flowers

- found herself a corner for some quiet reflection

... and also learnt to pray
Namo Namo, Jai Jai

Moments captured on camera

Spent a (rare) relaxed Sunday, getting all dressed and heading to Farzi Cafe at UB City for lunch (a place wasted on us vegetarians)
Nap time!