Ram and I went to the local fire station as part of the Cub Scouts activity. I love love being part of guided tours, you get to learn so much as you listen while you see. Under the guise of taking Ram, I had the opportunity to get a glimpse into the behind the screen activities at the fire station. The most amazing part for me was learning that the firefighters will the have to get into their bulky gear and out of the door within a minute of receiving the call for action. The need for being swift is not surprising given what they do, but you develop an appreciation for how meticulously it is practiced. The boys had a blast climbing into the fire engine, trying the hat, lifting the equipments, and chit chatting with the firefighters.
Hari is working on his diorama project at Sunday school. He has chosen migration to India as his research topic, and we have been learning some cool facts together. Did you know that Nepal and India share open borders? Unencumbered movement of people between two countries. Did you know Amartya Sen was actually born in Bangladesh? The only China town in India is at West Bengal. George Orwell was actually born in India? The Parsis, the Syrian Christians, the Indian Jews. Truly, India is such a diverse nation.
Eats – bad. I had a planned lapse (meaning the lapse was not due to temptation or craving but it was something I had budgeted for) so I don’t feel bad about it. What I do feel bad about is the four pieces of dark chocolate I had. Dark chocolate is allowed in the workshop but only one piece. I definitely need to work on my portions, will specifically focus on it this week. Otherwise the regular meals were ok. Raagi dosai with sambar for breakfast, pongal sambar for lunch, dinner sambar rice. Aarachu vitta sambar is a rare treat in our house, so when I make it I don’t miss an opportunity to devour it.
Workout – 17 mins of jogging with the first born. It was so hard to pull myself out of the house. I had to keep reminding myself that the future me would regret if I let the workout slip by. And I am so glad I pushed myself. It was an absolute treat to get out early in the morning with the fresh cool air caressing my face. Hari thought so too!
Meditation – 9 mins. I did not do any nostril breathing.
Hydration – so so. I think I nearly made it but did not pay particular attention to it.
Sleep – bad, slept only for six hours. I see the repeat of the story tomorrow. I don’t like that but unfortunately that’s the reality now.
A day filled with gratitude.
- Just when I woke up this morning, Ram who was sleeping right next to me, kissed and put his arms around me with such warmth that it melted my heart and rendered it into a pot of mush. Ironically, what the love bug told me next left me feeling like the most apathatic and horrible mom in the whole wide world – “I am so excited amma. I wonder how much money the Tooth Fairy has left for me. I am tempted to look under my pillow.” Oh no, how could I? Last night a certain someone had signaled to certain someone else to take care of it and that someone else conveniently forgot it the very next moment it was told to her. Aiyoo.!! After chiding myself and catastrophizing the whole situation in my head, I woke up my knight in shining armour, who was snoring blissfully, and muttered to the clueless soul in broken hindi “mein dhanth keliyo jho rakna hai, woh bhool gayee” (as you may have guessed, the child does not know hindi but it did not matter because he was mentally lost in counting his treasury… if I get $1, I will have $32 pocket money, if I get $5, I will have…) The knight in shining armour woke up laughing heartily, went out of the room under the guise of having to use the restroom.. Long story short, five minutes later, the child’s eye lit up as he pulled out a crumpled $5 note. I heaved a sigh of relief and made the best cup of tea to my knight in shining armour who saved the day for this forgetful mommy. Thank you, thank you and thank you.
- Hari slept undisturbed the whole night last night. The child has had fragmented sleep for the past several weeks due to allergies. We think the trigger is construction related dust. Poor child, poor child, wakes up two to three times with a congested nose, and terrible sneezes. So every night he catches good sleep, I offer my gratitude from the bottom of my heart.
- Sunday school started today. Yesterday, I was overwhelmed with how thinly I have stretched myself and was convinced that I should think twice before committing next year. It’s too much preparation and too much time commitment. But this morning when I went to school, my heart was full with gratitude. This the place where I get my ix of India every week. Where I get to sing Vande Mataram and Hum Honge Khamiyaap loudly and proudly. Where as much as my kids want to make fun of the accent, in a strange sense feel like they belong. It was such a treat to see kids from last year come up to me and catch up. I am assisting Hari’s class in the first hour, I had taught some kids in this class five years back, my very first batch and there was a certain ease and friendliness in the air. I was also thrilled to see my new kids this year, can’t wait to see where they will take me on this journey this year.
What do you do when you are not proficient in a language but are charged with the task of preparing your child for a writing competition? Google translator to rescue!
Hari is preparing for a mandatory tamil writing competition. While I don’t think it’s fair to make a child participate in something that he is not ready for, it’s a decision that is outside my control and rests with someone who belongs to a different school of thought. You tell yourself it is what it is, and roll up your sleeves to see how you can make the best out of the situation.
The topic for the tamil competition is who would you pick as your role model. And of course, the child has to pick someone who would truly stretch our non-existent tamil writing skills – none other than the legendary boxer Muhammed Ali. Turns out, with Google Translator, you can accomplish a lot more than you would expect. We have just begun but are feeling good about the progress made considering the novice we are in the language. We will have it run it by a willing soul that is good at tamil. But atleast we don’t feel as stranded, and it is turning out to be an excellent bonding experience with the child. Long live Google and its products.
We are having a super duper uber gorgeous day in our part of the world today. However, the true New Englanders, the children in my culture class as well as my first born, have been complaining about how hot the day is! They made themselves hand fans and kept swaying their way rather stylishly. It was hard to keep a straight face and work on our lesson plan.
In other news, we celebrated Tagore Day (falls on May 07) today in school. My kids along with other second graders recited the Champa Flower and the Clouds and Waves in assembly today. They had to prepare at very short notice, but they were such troopers. I am mighty proud of them. Speaking of Champa Flower, it’s such a lovable and endearing poem, reminded me so much of Runaway Bunny.
One of the teachers organized a fun quiz on Tagore covering little unknown facts about the poet. Did you know that Tagore’s Nobel Prize got stolen? Did you know that he was a whimsical person, who thrived on change? Did you know that he lived in several houses over different periods in Shantiniketan? The kids loved learning these trivias!