Category: Monday

Mornings #SOL

Mornings #SOL

6.15, says the kitchen clock. The sun is just lighting up the skies. I slide some butter on the hot pan, the sizzle sounding loud in the early morning quiet. I put in slices of bread quietening the sizzle, then turn the flame down and head off to wake the children.

I find H sleeping on his stomach, head twisted upwards at an awkward angle, a thin sheet barely covering him, the fan on full blast. I reach out and decrease the fan speed then call out to him. He doesn’t stir. I give him a gentle shake, trying to reach him through the swathes of sleep. He nods finally, as I tell him he has five more minutes.

This five minute warning, I have found, helps ease the children to start the day. I like it too. I hate dragging them out of bed, specially on cold winter mornings or on rainy overcast days. Mondays are the worst, specially exam Mondays, like today.

He’s a night owl, this one, lying awake late, then waking up to lethargic mornings, often begging for an extra minute after the five-minute buffer.

In her room, N lies invisible among the folds of a thick comforter, the fan switched off. She stirs as I call her, gets her head out then silently points to her cheek, eyes still shut. I give her a kiss. She turns her head and points to the other one for another kiss – our own private little ritual. Then she snuggles down for the extra five minutes. Mornings are easier for her specially if she has a ‘good’ day lined up.

I marvel at how different they are.

I smile remembering how passionately we read Linda Goodman back during college, how confidently we allotted character traits to people we barely new. ‘Ooh she’s a Scorpio, beware’. ‘Oh he’s an Arian, bound to be flighty’. Judgement came only too easily.

How ridiculous it seems now! How can people born over thirty days have the same traits when these two, born a few minutes apart, are chalk and cheese? How drastically did the planet alignment shift in those two minutes to get me two such varied ones?

Interesting subject of study for an astrologer, I muse flipping the bread, and tipping the egg on to it on the pan.

I glance at the clock again. Five minutes are up. I walk to each of their rooms in turn, checking on them, calling out again, trying to inject a sternness in my voice this time, a sternness I don’t really feel but there’s no time for mush now.

Another day beckons.

 

Sharing the post with Two Writing Teachers.

Finally, A Reader!

Finally, A Reader!

The other day I saw H sneaking into the washroom with a book hidden rather clumsily behind his back.

And that dear friends, was the very first sign.

After years and years of cajoling, of telling delicious stories, of quoting wondrous quotes, of strewing books around the house, of talking teasers and stopping at the best bits and also of running a book club, we have a reader in the house.

Finally, H has graduated to being a true-blue reader.

There’s a little bit of my grandma in me that forbids the children from reading in the loo. I may not throw a fit any longer (The Husband, who had no such qualms and no such a grand mom apparently, cured me long ago) but I’d much rather the children don’t make it a habit. I have to mention here that I did get them The Diary of Amos Lee (where the protagonist writes his diary in the loo). See? I was that desperate to get them to read. So perhaps I was sending out mixed signals in the first place.

However, I digress.

There was more proof coming my way. Another day H threw a huge tantrum and refused to leave his book during dinner. Yes yes I know a lot of us read while eating but that’s another bit of my grandma who insisted we were dishonouring two gods if we did that – Annapurna, the goddess of food and Saraswati, the goddess  of learning, both of who deserved undivided attention, according to her.

I’m digressing again but my grandma did talk a lot of sense, I see that now.

Getting back to H, last week at his Open House in school, his art teacher complained he wasn’t focussing on his artwork because he was in a hurry to finish and get back to his book. Art is not his favourite subject and he got his book confiscated. Twice. I stifled a smile at that, since I had mine confiscated during embroidery class!

I shouldn’t have smiled because soon after I found him lost in a book right before his Hindi exam and that wasn’t funny at all. “I finished the Chamber of Secrets,” he told me excitedly, while I struggled to decide whether to take him to task or to high-five his outstretched palm.

I find him curled up in various corners of the house, he insists on reading out the ‘best’ bits to me (which, by the way, are often the most unsavoury ones) and laughs so hard while telling me the funny bits that I can barely make out what he’s saying. It’s delightful to watch this transformation even though his timing is not quite right. But then passions never come in half measures.

He’s managed to inspire N too. She was a late starter at reading and still struggles a bit, but is all enthused and is making her way through The Philosopher’s Stone, slowly but steadily. ‘Ma I met Hermione,’ she shouted out when she first found her between the pages.

For years they were stuck with Captain Underpants and Wimpy Kid and  Dork Diaries. I am relieved they are finally graduating to ‘real’ books.

So here’s a reminder – Don’t give up on your child, ever. No matter how stubborn they might seem or how resistant, the things we do and say are getting registered somewhere in their super busy brains. And one fine day they will throw us a surprise.

Do you have a reader at home? Did your love for reading ever get you into trouble?

Linking up with #MondayMusings at Everydaygyan

 

and with Mackenzie at Reflections from Me #mg

Another Monday morning

Another Monday morning

As the alarm rang today morning I got out of bed without hitting the snooze button even once. Some feat, that! For a change I was ready to meet the new week, on this rather warm Monday morning, with a smile on my face. I felt well-rested and happy.

Forty-five minutes later the tiffins were done – snack and lunch, bottles filled with fresh water, milk glasses at the table and eggs beaten and ready to go on the pan.
Then I went to wake the children.
As usual they were reluctant to get out of bed, snuggling in deeper, begging for the last five minutes. I gave them ten. Finally they got up complaining of aches and pains like a bunch of old fuddy duddies —
‘My stomach hurts,’ said N.
 ‘Go sit in the loo and you can skip the milk today,’ I told her.
‘I sprained my foot yesterday,’ complained H as he made his way to the washroom with an exaggerated limp. ‘And I couldn’t sleep all night because I was coughing.’
‘Can you please write a note for my teacher?’
‘To excuse you from football?’ I asked, a trifle surprised since that’s his favourite sport.
‘No, of course not,’ said he, ‘I can manage football. Ask her to let me put my head down and sleep during social studies if I feel tired.’
No, I didn’t ask how he could play football with a sprained ankle. I refused to write the note, though because I figured if he could play football with a ‘sprained’ ankle he might as well sit through social studies too.
Instead, I sprayed pain reliever and wrapped up his foot in crepe bandage, smiling when he said he felt ‘better already’. I gave him his inhaler since the cough and wheeze were genuine. Meanwhile N’s stomach ache had subsided magically at the suggestion of the milk-holiday.
Finally after all the pains, real and imagined, had been taken care of, I could wave the kids off to school.
All it takes, to make a happy beginning, is a good night’s sleep.
How has your week started?

Blog-Prompt Day 3 – Monday

Blog-Prompt Day 3 – Monday

Me: Hey there Good Morning Monday.

Monday (Stumbling out of deep slumber): What? What? Is it my turn already?

Me: Hey No, relax, it’s just Wednesday.

Monday (Falling back on his bed and sounding very annoyed): What are you doing then, waking me up? Can’t a person have some peace even on off days?

Me: Oops sorry there. It’s just that I had to turn in a piece on you and I thought I’d get an interview. All I found online were loads of caricatures saying nasty things about you. I thought I’d get your perspective on this whole Monday Blues, Manic Monday thing.

Monday: You think I’m an idiot? I’m no celeb and I know it? I know your journo type too. You’ll pretend to be all nice and fair and I-want-your-side-of-the-story, all Oprahish. Then you’ll go out and turn into a rabid reporter and write a sarcy, nasty piece. You know how people get a starlet to deny an affair and then put the ‘just friends’ in quotes like this. So no Thank You. I’m good.

Me: You’ve got it all wrong. Trust me. I’m a friend. For the record I’m not a Monday hater. Never have been. Journalists work in shifts. So Mondays aren’t Mondays at all, if you get what I mean. I’m the most neutral person you’re ever likely to get to tell your story.

Monday (Disappearing back under the sheets): Story? I have no story to tell. Nighty night.

Me: Come on Monday. Don’t get all cynical.

Monday (Emerging from the covers): Oh alright since I’m awake anyway, fire away.

Me: Thanks thanks Mon.. may I call you Mon? So Mon you seem to be the most universally hated day of the week. How do you feel?

Mon (Smirking): YOU ARE ORIGINAL! Really the journo type – the type that thrusts a mike in the face of a
man stuck in a manhole and asks him, “So Sir how do you feel?” HOW DO I FEEL???? For Godsake how would YOU feel? How would ANYONE feel? Being maligned for no reason at all. Had it not been for me would anything get done anywhere in the world? Is it my fault that people refuse to give up their bingeing and partying even after two whole days and nights and are then hung over all of me? Is it my fault that the funnest days come right before me? How would you feel when Saturday and Sunday strut about right
behind you with their “We’re the most popular days” faces? And you know the irony? No one would even look at them had it not been for me. So much for their lording it over the rest of us! But do I tell them that? No Sir, I do not. Like I said, I’m a peaceful guy. I do my day’s worth and then snuggle up and sleep.

Me: So you think people have been unfair to you?

Mon: Of course they’ve been unfair. But then life, my friend is unfair. Being in a place like mine, turns a guy philosophical. God made us all the same. It’s man who turned us into Fun Fridays and Monster Mondays. Did I tell you to work like Zombies without stopping to enjoy yourself? Is it my fault you get yourselves caught in jobs you hate?

Me: So what advice would you like to give our readers?

Mon: I’m not one for advising anyone. All I’ll say is STOP THE HATE. Give yourself a break if you want to, even if it’s a Monday. Then get back to work. How about reserving one happy thing for a Monday? Make it a Memorable Monday or a Merry Monday.. will you? Love your job and you’ll find you love me too.

And now may I just go back to bed?
******************

That, dear readers, was ‘Monday’ for you. I’m off for a cup of tea to make my Monday special. You take a break too. Have a good week.

I WATCHED A MOVIE…

I WATCHED A MOVIE…

.. in the theatre, last Sunday. That’s a huge reason to rejoice because the last time I was there was almost two years back  and before that it was in 2006. That’s a bad bad average for someone who loves films and worse for someone who loves the whole theatre experience…
To begin with there’s the
– The big screen
– The great sound system
– The caramel popcorn
Plus
– The maid doesn’t bother you
– The doorbell doesn’t ring
– You don’t have to yell at the kids to ‘Keep it down’
– Or dodge the ball as it lands on you while they play bat-ball
– Or handle The Husband who just wants ‘a cup of tea please’

 

It’s just you, the popcorn and the film.. bliss.

Of course occasionally you find yourself reaching out for the remote that’s not there but that’s about the only hitch.
The Husband gallantly volunteered to take care of the kids while I went off with the SIL. Needless to say I totally completely loved the film .. oh did I forget to mention the name?.. it was Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara. The whole idea of the film is so not me but so what-I-would-love-to-be… I mean what fun it would be to go off with a bunch of friends to do things you would never actually do on your own.
That was fun. Hope we can do it again soon.
In other developments, last Sunday was also the day the kids got their Taekwando green belts. There was much excitement and they were pretty thrilled with themselves. Despite the tiny thing that N is, she did better at the exam according to the instructor’s feed back. So much for H’s macho act.
This weekend was given over to food. We went out for a great Chinese dinner and then I ‘helped’ the kids finish their chocolate mousse.. thus did I desert my diet. And now is the time I start dreading that weighing machine as I ready for the gym. Mondays, I tell you, are the worst days of all.
Edited to add: The verdict at the gym: 800 gms up. Too stiff a punishment for one night of revelry, isn’t it? It’s back to work now.

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On my other blog: Beat About The Book

Just Wodehouse #BookBytes 18

Just Wodehouse #BookBytes 18

I’m keeping today’s post short and sweet in memory of one of my favourite authors who happens to have his birthday today – Sir Pelham Grenville Wodehouse, ‘Plum’. The interesting thing about this first quote is that Wodehouse is trying to quote Shakespeare but in his own inimitable way. The Bard would probably have turned […]