Goodbye old friend.

All of last month there has been a flutter in my stomach. I have been cleaning sorting , packing , giving away, secretly dreading the day when we move. And here it is upon us. I have complained often how much work packing is, but why oh why is it really so shockingly easy to dismantle this entire life and stow it away .

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The dust you hold, old friend is all ours in this moment, short-lived. My babies have left marks on your walls, shaken wildly your  creaky doors. You have seen us bare, in body and in mind, seen us make love , seen us fight. You have held our secrets, contained our anger, spread our joy. You did not seem to mind our moaning your lack of space. I wonder if there really were a lack, you made space for my growing belly, for a new baby and bassinets and high chairs and cots and for all the thousands of crafts we made. You held us up these five years in the most unsightly desperate moments and kept us from falling out of giddy excitement.

You know more than I, of times that have gone by.You know I am a fool. Hold me up for now, old friend. Till new residents take you from me, till someone else looks out my window tomorrow and you are freshly painted. The children are excited, yet they ask , ” Mamma then who will live here?” .” Are we never coming back here?” All happiness must be tinged, dear friend. I know that now.

I’ll hold you, dear friend. I wouldn’t forget. It will be hard to look back at you and not think of you as our own little corner,to have not the sight of your trees in the balcony. You are already looking away from me, distancing yourself like the good friend you are. Pushing me out, pushing me forward, I know you. I won’t be back but you ll stay. Here and in our memories. In old photos that will pop up time and again. When the children will talk, you know they will. We will. I have got to go make another home, so babies can not feel much pain. They are tiny for it. Send me with some of your rusty , swaying  third floor strength, friend.

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May you know more life, more lovers’ sighs. May they tend you well. Farewell.

You have been our home and will.

From the bundle of boxes that I am until on this earth I be.

 

 

“Rachel’s day in the garden” – a review and the fun we had being yogi bears!!

Think of cushioned socks walking on wooden floors. Gingerly , with soft thuds is how this mamma is treading the ground with her freshly three-year old. Gently, she reminds herself , gently. So what if he expresses, in no uncertain terms , anything with a hint of vegetables or with an accidental pronunciation of healthy  as ‘horrible’- I’d be lying if I said I didn’t enjoy that peculiar roll of  “rrs” ,but really I am worried. Who could adequately put a finger on the mysterious reasons why a toddler is the way he is? Or why he chooses to chew on wires? Or why sticky toffee in my hair is just so funny?

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There are days and there are days. The latter leave me wobbly in all sorts of ways.  When Wednesday last weeble wobbled and refused to go down, I decided to take out a book I had long ago received to review. Not a good day for trying something new but I can’t resist odd outcomes ( being all wobbly might be held responsible for such decisions) So , with profound dignity  I  announced . ” Here’s a new book, Who wants to read? ” ” No one” , of course.

I  got my eight year old on my side and started to read with him to make my three-year old want to .( Yes, go on tell me where to get my smart parenting prize from!) .The book is called ” Rachel’s day in the garden” by Giselle Shardlow . It is a yoga story book for kids.

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Rachel and Sammy

Rachel with her little puppy goes out into the garden to explore the stirrings of newly arrived spring and like children and puppies do, they catch the movement and make it their own. Now when mamma turns storyteller with a book that is visually compelling and along with her voice lifts her hands and bends her legs , the bawling toddler starts to listen. My eight year old , who considers himself averse to picture books, now that he is a big chapter book reader, thinks the  illustrations are “cute”.  The bright , catchy art is by Hazel Quintanilla . There is an observable texture to the pictures and a lot of pattern use which we particularly like.

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For listening little boys, mountain pose and tree pose and warrior pose are mesmerizing words. Especially when mamma tries to do them and fails. The talking begins and we talk of the smell of rain and the seeds we’d like to grow. The eight year old throws in an astounding fact about caterpillars and so we know that caterpillars are picky eaters too but they grow into beautiful butterflies still. What a relief! The toddler is carried away by the fluffiness of the puppy and now starts to move his legs. We turn into yogi bears and all fall down.

We find Rachel doing the various yoga poses in a circle on each page as the story moves on . There is a list of yoga poses for kids and a parent-teacher guide at the back which is rather handy for special persons like me who are born into the land of Yoga and yet have stayed blissfully ignorant.  Yes, I am an awesome mum like that.

rachels-day-in-the-garden4-400We had a fun reading time and for once I don’t think I’ll mind rereading it a number of times. Toddlers are so fond of repetition ,why? And trying the various poses and falling and seeing my children laugh as they prove more agile than me. We found the book a great way to connect and well, looking at my kids laugh is ridiculously comforting somehow.

Hoping , Yoga will enter our lives in these sweet beginner like ways and calm will descend ! Hoping, someday I will be wobbly no more.

Here’s an Amazon link if you’d like some hours of imaginative relaxing fun:

Rachel’s day in the garden

Here’s how the memory of our reading time is stored in my head, just so you are curious:

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PS: Alexa Bigwarfe sent me a complimentary copy to review. This post is not sponsored, though, and all words (unless quoted) and opinions are mine.

 

anything-but-all together-trifling News and flowers.

Dear Reader

Thank you for still being here and before any wild ideas start to fly , allow me to hush them by saying ” No, it isn’t that kind of news.” It still is wacky wonderful news though!

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First of all it is this little (awesome) space of mine’s Birthday. I have babbled here for a complete year now. I would like to think it has not all been tiresome twaddle. Your narrator is making a poker face here , dear reader, pretending not to, but wanting you to say that you have loved it. Just being jolly here. I am still the bashful wench I was a year ago, addicted to worry and afflicted on most of my days by crabby kids.’ Most of the days ‘can easily turn into a number of weary weeks, you’d know if you have a bunch of those. Or even one.

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I haven’t been able to toss away my clothesline , and haven’t turned into the wonderful keeper of the house with the well stocked pantry and exquisite copper kettles but I have found that I ain’t missing funnybones. There isn’t wholesome wisdom I  have to offer,  I  have a serious deficit. Neither can I promise to daily dabble. But if you would stick around I  have a lot coming up. To wit, prior to this place here, I could not have associated  words as blogging or writing or illustrating with me but a year later , I wish not to disassociate myself ever. I am definitely more well-endowed (intend the pun or not!) and more balanced than a year ago.

Here are some flowers I want to offer.I really do mean the Thank you. They will look pretty on your phone!

wallpaper 1spring for your device ,here

WP_20160518_08_24_58_Progiant bloomers,here

WP_20160518_08_24_07_Prothe whole bunch, here

 

 

In other news , I took up the 100 days challenge on Instagram. I post a painting  there everyday. If you haven’t taken a look,  pray DO!!

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My preoccupation with it, has hit me so intensely, so wholly , that my ears have become capable of reducing my toddler’s intense tantrums to the decibel of soft falling snow ( I  am in air conditioning). It is awfully addictive. Terrible love, I tell you. I am living pictures. Condition me to wear woolly padded socks in the blazing sun , I ll do it. I  must mention that Big Bear has been rather cuddly and cooperative.

Wait there’s more! We are moving. Rather soon now. I won’t wander with words on the state of my mind on account of that . I have a picture to let you see .

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I am going to do a series of posts here on how our new home evolves room by room. Stay around . What’s not to like about a new start? All of us need one.

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The tale of poo(h). No, not the adorable bear.

MY TRIBUTE TO THE FUN THAT IS POTTY TRAINING.

Sportive infant

Every- inch- a- terror,

I wouldn’t maroon you

No, not in ever

Stay stranded we will

on potty island

Pirates we are! Remember?!

This world is ours

and its adventures ,of the turd kind

Why would I EVER mind?

“Do ants go potty?”, you will say

” platypuses and dinosaurs and scorpions too?”

“And mommy , YOU?”

“What about spiders??”

Shiver me timbers, this pooping thing is fun!

So far too, from being done

Sportive infant

every-inch -a -terror

We ARE in this together

through our crabby tempers and our crappy moods

as we stare each other out

We prove again we are no flighty dudes.

( A slight cry here for the loss of my ladylike-ness)

such is the state of our mess.

Sportive infant

every-inch-a-terror

I am not deserting you

till you are ready

to simply poop ,plop , flush and go.

to look beyond the world of poo(h) and know

“Oh! the places you’ll go”

For now

I am mommy. AND It’s doody.

 

 

PS: This is dedicated to all mommies, spending hours in the bathroom with their little ones ,coaxing, pleading, yelling, story-telling. We are in this together. I am not sure if we ll miss the potty accidents and messes, but we ll surely miss the journey to that plop of victory! And how we shouted hurray!

 

 

 

 

Love myself, despite

It is hot.  It could distort-a- thought hot. Melting like morning butter on toast. There is no more coaxing our little pine. It is a goodbye. The babies get sad when I try to explain.

The wind has sat down. You’d think it will move again but it won’t.  It just sits getting heavier. A loss of free will. You’d think evening would bring relief  but by twilight , free will is thickened jam.  Store in a jar and refrigerate.

Pour yet another glass of a chilled something for the children, worry what if even watermelons will evaporate. Check again and be positive that the window panes are starting to swell. Go look once more and be positive it is only an illusion.

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Be hot-headed. Forget to drink.  A rag doll be. Don’t stop that unsavory lament of how no one cares. Don’t feel like eating. Skip that lunch. A permanent temporary solution. Allow hurtful words to play in your head. Fight for why no one stands for you. Why no one understands. Tired you, tire yourself some more.

Only don’t.

Bear with me, cheer is nigh.

Sit yourself down. Drink something. Eat something. Replenish before you can give again. Get that jar out. Sweet free will. Wash down that hurt. Butterfly float. There is second wind.

Next time, when someone unkind, says you stay home and do nothing. Don’t you wait for someone else to jump in and save you.

Up you stand and say ,” I am a mother of young children, the center of our home, I am the lover , the nurse, the laughter, the art. The heart. The hearth. I am the sum of our everyday and I am the difference our little ones will make.”

When downward bound again, repeat, ” love myself, despite.”

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Too many hugs?

There is one thing I do truly well –  asking for hugs. My kids hug me innumerable times a day, unasked. It is my pursuit of being in a long embrace with Big Bear that I am so especially good at I have made an extreme sport of it. Now before you get me wrong it is not the marital hug I talk about. That one is sparkling and full of magical beans. I get quite chirpy when I think of it but will refrain from any further elaboration.

It is the tender, the mushy , the idyllic kind of hug that I am chasing. Yes, the classic one with loopy arms , beating hearts, I know clichéd, with the magnetic  force of which my swirling big toe can crush the ground. And in the process lift me up . From whatever it is that holds me down. It is not just the hug that is critical to my quest, it is the choreographed dance of my limbs , the blissful squeezing of my eyes, the explosive ticking in my chest wanting to be held that has made me such an enthusiast. It is incurable, involuntary, persistent and  complicated. Simple , all the same, I need a hug. Right when I need it. Or I can go on asking.

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I like a bit of demonstrative love. My childhood mostly bereft of it, I may have asked for one too many hugs from Big bear. I take this crusade very seriously, often think I am good at it, but not quite. I continue to stay vulnerable but refuse to waver.

I hug my children, we have lots of cuddling time everyday. It brings me peace like no other, but the little girl in me wants a hug to hide. That only the tree like Big bear can provide, but needs and moods hardly do coincide.

A giant , magnificent hug , unasked , a surprise, I keep thinking of it. I can feel its tight squeeze .  At least my boys wouldn’t grow up to be needy as I am. And I know they will intuit the need for one.

My big bear hug will be. It better be sooner than later though. I can barely function. I am serious.

About going on asking.

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Study of a jungle

On Elephant back.

Two very fuzzy little boys, slightly sweaty from a night under mosquito nets woke up at day peep. They were packed into the car, warm and giggly and taken to where the elephants stood tall and graceful all in a row.wp_ss_20160317_0003No dilly-dallying , strategically placing herself against the platform, just how her trainer the ‘mahout’ instructed  Miss Elephant let the little boys get on the howdah . Mamma and papa got up too, obviously. The rails were put back on and Miss Elephant set on to tumble and roll through mounds of color and grassy perfumes.

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Kaziranga national park. A new baby!!

A fragrant sunrise and a very quick sighting of a herd of deer, the little boys were beside themselves, dangling their legs in the most precarious ways , trying really hard to turn themselves into endangered species. All the while Papa was spotting away happily, ” a rhino there! there ‘s a baby too!!” ” those beefy wild buffaloes ” ” Another rhino” ” A deer”  , mamma went on whispering warnings ,” hold on” ” push yourself up” ” Don’t let go” .  A jumpy mamma brings the little ones laughter.

Fern fronds unfold and strappy dark leafy trees get taller. A stray branch comes perfectly  squiggly trying to scrape knees.  The slight wind catches up with Miss Elephant and riding on her through the jungle feels like riding on a wispy cloud. A height that doesn’t take to the top of the trees but to the densest middles where if you stood still, a plant would instantaneously grow on you, a creeper would warp over and again. A lake where the tiger comes to drink and a steep turn, Miss Elephant like a dancer makes. All this while the ‘mahout’ talks of tiger sightings and rhinos butting the elephants.

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the barking deer!!

The jungle breathes heavy from the depths of the ground. A soporific perfume hangs, the little boys are lulled into quiet. On the elephant back, they have turned into arboreal creatures, dangling legs one with the tawny branches. Trees that look like fantasy, sprouting leaves in the blink of an eye.

Miss Elephant deposits them back on the platform. Poses for a picture . There are two more trips to make before she can call it a day.

All four pairs of eyes are gleaming. Like they do when one is starving but very happy. It doesn’t stop here. They go back to a warm breakfast and a safari on a jeep into the denser part of the jungle.

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our road to adventure

Enchanted. All thought suspended.

Of rusty time and old grannies.

 

We stayed two days at Big Bear’s grandmother’s rustic village home while we were visiting family.  A big house in a small place, where time has grown old, spry only in the wings of a firefly or the acoustics of a cricket. Either of which may fall with a final flutter into your glass of warm cow milk, in case you were a little boy indulging in creamy sips under the yellow light of an electric luminary. That would make you squirm and old Time laugh.

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Where everyone knows everyone, where old grannies come one by one to look at the visitors. Where the skies seem to bend at the windows, curious, as if to hear what can be said in the absence of a shared language. I can comprehend just enough and not speak at all. Unmindful of it, old grannies peck my cheeks , run their hands down my shoulders, stand back, look,  dotingly smile, sit down, sip tea. I feel too young, too shy. Old grannies, little girls somewhere,soft and fragile, worn and nurturing.  Patchwork grannies , lovingly made with printed cottons, faded reds, inked blues, bleached whites, neatly hemmed. Thoughtfully grown old ,with old man Time.

Where Big Bear’s grandmother sits on a low wooden seat , as she gently gauges the generic roundness of each potato with her brown nimble fingers. With her indestructible iron knife she scores each eye that is threatening to sprout and removes it with jaunty coolness. Unhurriedly she takes off the peel in thin strips as the spud dances in her hand and with a final keen scrutiny plop goes the chipper into a bowl of water. Unwittingly she has brought on a serendipitous collision in my mind. Brought me as close to spirituality as I can get. Made me still, bent my thought like the sky at the window. Patchwork potatoes, fondly grown with pretty patterns of sunlight and red soil.

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Old man Time lets me be.  A dressmaker in a daydream. Dreaming away of chevron skies and rainbow quilts.