Monthly Archives: November 2015

What is a ‘virgin’?

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Yeah..that’s right..that is the title of this post. (and it is the third post of the day…have not blogged in a while so decided to go the whole hog)
Anyway, Nish came to me yesterday and asked me this very innocently: Aai, what’s a virgin?”
I was not expected to field these questions at 4…

Me: Why do you ask?
Nish: S (his friend) was telling me that he knows another virgin
Me: What do you mean another virgin?
Nish: I know one too…but he know another one
Me: Which virgin do you know love?
Nish: I don’t know what virgin is Aai! But when I was singing “When the Saints go marching in” S said that he knows another virgin. The tune is a little different.
Me (whew): Yeah…that song has many versions (i said the word slowly and clearly). It means that there are different ways that the same song has been sung. You have versions of games, of cars, of many things.

And then then 4 yr old tripped off happily to his room singing his ‘virgin’ of ob la di ob la da …yeah and life goes on!

looking at the world through my almost 3 year old’s lens

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Amu is a few days shy of 3…the terrible twos seem to using these last few moments of his twos to manifest themselves and make up for lost time. From a cheerful kid with a fairly sunny disposition, Amu has turned into the king of tantrums. He wants his brothers to share (you have to learn to share nish” he preaches) But try asking him to let someone else dip into the (common) tin of cookies and we have a total melt down. “he cant take a biscuit…it’s my tin” “No” i reason, “it’s our tin”. “Ok…but the biscuits are still all mine”

Last evening as he rapidly dismantled a complicated lego car that his brother had made, I intervened saying “Don’t think that is such a great idea Amu. Sid and Nish made that car. check with them first”
Egocentric boy replies “No I want to break it. They want me to break it Aai” (yeah sure they do love!)

Here’s what a trip down to the play area looks like….we get to the ground floor, I help him wheel his rather unwieldy bike to the door. I prop the door open. “Why did you do that???? I wanted to open the door!!!!” (loud scream)
I figure the simplest thing to do is to close the door
Me: Sorry about that Amu. I did not know you wanted to open the door. You don’t  need to yell. You can just ask me to close it
Amu: No! You can’t just close it. Now we have to go back up again and come down and I will open it
Me: Why dont we just open it again from here?
Amu: No that’s not fair. I wanted to do it own my OWN! We have to go up again.
The other two boys are waiting with their bikes and looking at us. I ask them to go on ahead and start playing.
Amu: Come back up!
Fortunately at this point he was distracted by some friends who had also come out to play. However,  half an hour later he remembered and came back to me with the same ridiculous request.

He sometimes even asks me to return his snot, to unwipe the water from his body, to give his pee back to him (how could I flush it without checking?)

I am struggling with the balance (and my sanity). Do i give in to some of it, stay firm and not give in at all and deal with the loud raucous tantrums (it is IMPOSSIBLE to rationalize at that point), fortunately my 4 yr old twins recognize the madness and are fairly decent in dealing with it…though the broken lego constructions and jigsaw puzzles leave them hopping mad too!

Oh, and the negotiations!!! Boy can he negotiate …and he is super persistent too! I am truly hoping that this is just another phase that will pass (soooooon). It is teaching me patience (much more than I ever thought I would need), helping me with skillful use of vocabulary (cause I certainly can’t start cursing) and definitely highlighting the need for meditation.

But then, on a different note, the tight hugs he gives me so generously, the big fat juicy kisses, head massages and cuddles, general advice on life (finish all your tea ok..it’s good in cold weather) and his loud proclamations of “best mama in the whooooole world!” put the sunshine back into my day, help me see what a precious little bundle of joy he is and helps me get through the next few tantrums!

Of course, any advice on this stage and phase would be much appreciated!

Time for some gingerbread

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IMG_8896Diwali has gone by and the cool weather is arriving in Bangalore. The rains have been regular daily visitors and the boys have moved from shorts to track pants and light sweatshirts. They are a lot more excited by the smell of baking and are generally super snacky when they are at home.

Yesterday i decided to make some gingerbread cookies. I got the recipe from Martha Stewart’s site (http://www.marthastewart.com/343445/gingerbread-cookies)

Anyway, long story short..a little tedious but turned out absolutely delish! The boys woke up from their afternoon nap like puppies with their noses in the air sniffing around in the kitchen. We pulled them out, I  let them cool and did a simple icing on top. Then before i knew it, the kids had taken them off the cooling rack and made off with a gingerbread man each.

Sid looked at Amu who was admiring his cookie in general and said “eat it up quickly before the gingerbread man runs away!”

Nish my ever musical boy immediately broke into the gingerbread man refrain “run run as fast as you can….”

Amu of course had us all in splits a minute later. He promptly chomped at his cookie and then held it up saying “no worries, i have eaten up his legs…now he cant run!

A school full of laughter

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Everyday when I go to pick up the kids from their preschool, the first sound that hits my ears as i as get out of the car is the sound of laughter…lots of laughter…giggles, gentle laughs, loud and boisterous laughs…and happy voices engaged in all kinds of conversations. I love to take a peek over the corner of the compound wall. It’s like a 30 second power packed entertainment video clip. There are children on swing-sets, children on slides, some wearing dress up clothes, others busy with some paper and colors. A few kids whiz around on trikes while others are occupied coloring on the paved area with chalks. Paper rockets zoom around but not half as fast as the excited bodies that fling and chase them. Sometimes there are kids arguing about something, the occasional tumble and scrape (i would be surprised if that did not happen!) but in general the place is alive with curious, engaged and really happy souls! I see kids chatting with each other, children chatting with an adult, some with fresh guavas off their guava tree, others observing the pet school rabbit. I sometimes worry that there may be some pressure for things like writing which for the younger kids is definitely developmentally inappropriate…but conversations with the team have helped and then when I see the myriad of other things happening – especially the interactions and time for free play I know I can relax…my boys are in the right place! For a setting that allows kids to be…to explore, play and discover is one where I know my boys will become the more rounded human beings that I would hope they will be….they get to experiment, practice, develop at their own pace…they negotiate, fight and make up, resolve conflicts or deal with them. I have been thinking about this for quite a few days…had to put it down and share.