What’s on Your Bookshelf ?

Did you know that 3rd March was World Book Day ? I didn’t.I read about it in the newspaper today.

I immediately checked the Amazon website. We know how much online retailers like celebrating ‘Mother’s Day’, ‘ Friendship Day’,’ Valentine Day’ and like by offering heavy discounts on products. I didn’t want to lose any golden opportunity to horde books. A quick check on their website confirmed that there was no such  ‘ super-happy-deals’ this time. Disappointing.

Did Amazon not know that 3rd March was ‘World Book Day’? Or did they chose to ignore it?

 Anyway, I decided to go ahead and celebrate the day by doing something bookish.

How about a sneak- peek into Junior’s reading world?

A little background:

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After a whole day of scribbling on the notepad and staring at the laptop, I came up with these-

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The bars and charts, did not throw me off my seat. I already had an idea of what the results would be like.

Favorite Author- Roald Dahl, as expected, still on top of the list.

New Interest- Detective and mystery stories. Too many Famous Five and Secret Sevens on the shelf.

Surprise- Picture books, like Wolves on the Wall, The Incredible Book Eating Book, still on the shelf.

It was a fun filled, thoroughly engaging activity.

I’m eager to know what’s on your bookshelf ? 

 

Daily Prompt: Drawing a Blank

In response to Daily Prompt: Drawing a Blank -When was the last time you walked away from a discussion,only to think of the Perfect Comeback hours later? Recreate the scene for us, and use your winning line.

Drawing a blank – that’s happening quite often in my life, nowadays.

Just the other day, Junior and I were watching Kung Fu Panda on TV, munching away on chips, when the realization that I was binge eating struck me.( It must have been the ‘eating Monkey’s cookie’ scene: Po sitting high on a kitchen rack,stuffing almond cookies in his mouth and sheepishly telling  Shifu:”Don’t tell Monkey.” )

I thought aloud, ” I’m putting on weight.”My fingers pinched the flab around my waist. “I need to go on diet immediately.”

“You’re going to give birth Mama. You are going to have babies,” pat came a comment from Junior. He didn’t bother to look at me.

I almost choked on a chip.

“I must tell it to husband when he comes home from work.” I made a mental note, and tried my best not to laugh.

I nudged him.” Do you want a baby brother or a baby sister?” I egged him on.

This time he looked at me, nodded his head and said, matter-of-factly :” You don’t have a choice Ma.Chromosomes decide that.”

I quietly slipped out of the living room.

Is it time for the ‘birds and bees’ discussion?

What’s your story ? How did you discuss it with your kids ?

Have fun watching this video!!

Daily Prompt: Mad Libs

In response to Daily Prompt Mad Libs : Turn to your co-workers, kids, Facebook friends, family -anyone who’s accessible-and ask them to suggest an article,an article and a noun. There’s your post title! Now Write

I looked towards Junior’s room. I knew there was considerable risk involved here- Junior’s creative brain could come up with a weird noun, and pair it with an  even weirder, unrelated adjective.

I called out to him,anyways. He came skipping into my room with a toy helicopter in hand.When I told him about the deal, he looked excited. I smiled;I was sure the noun would be ‘helicopter’ .

“CAT…. FAT…. THE FAT CAT,” he said, after a moment’s thought.

“What ?”I nearly fell off my chair.” Why ‘THE FAT CAT?….’Why not ‘ THE FAT DOG’ or ‘THE BAD DOG’. I know nothing about cats!”

I debated whether I should ask him for an alternate noun-adjective combination.

“But won’t that set a wrong example? ” the mother in me argued.

I gave Junior, who was standing expectantly by my side, a thumbs up. Pleased, he scooted off to his room.

I had no ‘cat story’ or ‘fat cat story’ to share.  So I decided to try out something different : to make a list of all the things in my house that are related to cats.

  • I found these on Junior’s bookshelf:

cat

That pretty much explains the choice of the noun, I guess.

But Fat?I flipped through T.S Eliot’s Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats and found BUSTOPHER JONES: THE CAT ABOUT TOWN

‘Bustopher Jones is not skin and bones –

In fact, he’s remarkably fat.’

  • These were in the old cards box:Birthday cards given to my husband by his college friends and his brother.

IMG_20160219_114950946Whoa ! Is my husband a ‘ cat person’? I didn’t know that. Point noted.

  • The fridge magnet: Notice the fish bone. We love eating fish. So do cats. 🙂

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  •   The Cat Chronicles on my WordPress Reader:I enjoy reading Nera, Tabby and Fluffy’s response to WordPress Daily Prompts.

Love to all cats and cat lovers 🙂 🙂

WPC: Weight(less)

Last night,when I saw the Photo Challenge theme-Weight(less): show us the effect of gravity in your photo this week – my imagination went on an over drive:I saw astronauts in white suits and helmets floating around in space;I visualized the terrified faces of people shouting ‘hooooo’ ,’squeee aiii eee’ as the roller coaster plunged down at a nerve-racking speed;I heard my physics teacher’s words ringing in my ears “you can experience weightlessness in a freely falling elevator”.

I decided to give this challenge a pass. I knew I did not have anything in my photo archive that would match the theme. I shut the laptop and went to bed.It was late -Husband was snoring and Junior was somewhere in his dreamland.

Then, this morning when I drew the window curtains and looked out, I found this:

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Three little girls hanging upside down from a bench with the sun shining right on their face. They even flashed the victory sign when they saw the camera.

when you want something,

all the universe conspires in helping you

to achieve it

-Paulo Coelho

Daily prompt: Unpopular

In response to Daily prompt : Unpopular -Tell us about a time when you had to choose between two options, and you picked the unpopular choice.

Sometimes unpopular choice invite awkward reactions. 

We were sitting on the top deck  of the launch(a make shift house boat),cruising slowly in and out of the innumerable narrow waterways of the dense Sundarban mangrove forests.Besides the three of us( Husband, Junior and me), there was another group on the boat – a big group with grandparents, children and adults.

A chirpy, loud, cheerful crowd with infectious enthusiasm. A friendly lot.

The grandfather looked very excited. He puffed on his cigarette and theatrically exclaimed ‘Apurbo !(beautiful)….. Asadharan!(extra ordinary)…. Dekhbar moto!( must see)’ every five minutes.

Now and then,his sons, son-in-laws standing near the rails,shouted ‘TIGER !!’ and pointed in the direction of an island, sending waves of excitement in the group. False alarms.

The children walked up and down the deck. Junior gelled well with them and joined the gang.

I sat near the womenfolk who were busy chatting and peeling oranges. Husband was busy with his camera and away from the noise and din.

Eeesh !( my God) it’s 9 o’clock already,’ one of the ladies sitting near me exclaimed and fished out a mobile phone from her huge hand bag and pressed the keys urgently.

‘How are Rin Tin and Pim Pim ? Did they sleep well ? Are they missing me ? Did they eat properly? Give the phone to them, at once. I want to talk to them,‘ she blurted as soon as she heard a voice on the other side.

Everyone on the deck was all ears – the children stopped playing, the men  turned towards the ladies and listened attentively.

‘Olaay Baba, shona, how are you? Did you take your vitamins on time?Don’t be naughty,‘ she continued. She sounded and looked  miserable.

The doctor in Park Street is excellent. I took my Lucy there. He gave a new diet chart and prescribed strong medication.Worked like magic. I’ll message you his number,‘ said the other lady.

Now I had no intention of eves dropping ,but the lady sounded concerned and the names Rin Tin and Pim Pim caught my attention.

Is everything fine?’ I inquired politely.’Must be tough to leave the children at home?’ I added.

Yes, yes.I miss them so much. they are like my children – my darling dogs – Rin Tin and Pim Pim,’said the grieving lady with a touch of maternal pride in her voice.

The rest of the family joined in- grandfather, the men and the children. Nostalgically,they told me all about their dogs-dead and alive. I told them about the dogs I had as a child.They shared their expert tips on the best breeds and pedigree. They told me how one can ascertain the nature of a dog by looking at its ears and paw. They informed me about the best and worst vets in town.They  recalled the funny stories about their furry pals and laughed. Proudly they showed me hundreds of the pictures of dogs on their mobile phones. The children, including Junior, crowded around the ladies and shouted the names of dogs as their aunt/mother flipped through the pictures.

Then the unexpected happened.

The grandfather turned to Junior and asked ‘ So, what is the name of your dog, son?’

I LIKE CATS.’ pat came the reply.

Everyone froze. The crowd dispersed – the men slowly walked away, the children hurdled near their mothers and looked at Junior is disbelief. The ladies muttered something under their breath.

I  smiled apologetically and pulled Junior to my side.

Creative Day Out

It was a cold, gloomy Saturday. Though the heavy rains had stopped, the nagging drizzle was enough to ruin the cheeriest moods.The kids were  grumpy and cranky.

To ward off boredom, we( Junior, Rai and I) headed to Claytopia- Bangalore’s first paint-your-own pottery studio.

We were greeted by shelves full of dainty teapots and cups,  tall vases, cute sharks and crocodiles and many more clay items.

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My little artists thought and thought and  thought……….AND finally, Junior zeroed on a Jeep  and Rai a Shell-shaped Vase.

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With pencils in hand, the kids were ready to let the creative juices flow.

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They were so engrossed in work that they ignored the yummy French fries 🙂

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Infectious 🙂 I picked up a coffee mug and drew flowers and clouds on it -something in line with William Wordsworth’s ‘I wandered lonely as a cloud’.

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Voila! our master pieces – Junior’s rough and tough Jeep and Rai’s  colorful Shell Vase. I don’t have a photo of my mug :(. I gifted it to my husband. It’s in his office now.IMG_20151208_104118128

Daily Prompt:The Number

In response to Daily Prompt ‘Your days are Numbered‘-What’s the date today ? Write it down, remove all dashes and slashes, and write a post that mentions that number.

Tomorrow Junior has a Math Test in school. Since morning, we (mother and son) have been revising the multiplication tables, working on long-division methods, solving word problems, drawing triangles and squares. We are in a different world today.

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My brains is in the hyper-active zone. I am seeing potential math problems in my daily chores – ‘if I eat three almonds everyday, how many almonds have I eaten in the month of May ? Does my spatula have a line of symmetry ?’

So,when I removed the dashes from 11/08/2015 to  get 11082015, all I could think of was to quickly do a divisibility test on the number.Here’s a list of divisibility tests Junior and I did for the number. Hope it takes you back to your school days 🙂

11082015

Divisible by 5

Not divisible by 2,4,8

Divisible by 3 and 9
( 1+1+0+8+2+0+1+5 =18; 18 is divisible by both 3 and 9)

Not divisible by 6
( though the number is divisible by 3, it is not divisible by 2)

Divisible by 7
( double of the last digit(5)=10,1108201-10=1108191; double of the last(1) digit =2, 110819-2 = 110817; double of the last digit=14, 11081 -14 =11067; double of the last digit...Forget it !! pick up the pencil and divide the original number 11082015 by 7. YES!!!YES!!! it is divisible by 7.)Divisibility rule for tricky 7

The Toy I Wanted The Most……

In response to NaBloPoMo Prompt -What was the one toy that a friend had that you wished you had when you were little?

When I was a child, I did not have a toy cupboard; neither did my friends. We stored our limited but priced possessions in colorful baskets, very similar to this one –IMG_20151102_104621138-001

We girls had kitchen sets- miniature pots, pans, rolling pins and stoves. Doting Aunts, Uncles and Grandparents ensured that our kitchens were always well equipped.In fact, our mini kitchens often had more pots and pans than our mothers’ pantry.

IMG_20151102_115840508We played a lot with dolls. The golden-haired-blue-eyed beauty with batting eye lids was definitely there in every girl’s basket. The tangled, matted hair and battered look reflected the extent of love showered on her by the owner.

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The boys on the other hand had toy guns, whistles, catapults,rubber and wooden animals.  Some had train sets complete with tracks. I don’t remember boys playing with cars though. In fact,back then( about thirty years ago) there were very few  real cars on the roads of my little hill town 🙂

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BUT they did have a toy that stole my little heart- a SPINNING TOP.( Unfortunately I do not have a picture of it).The boys were skilled at pulling the coiled strings and setting the top in motion. The wooden wonder would spin at high speed;the rainbow colored circles painted on it would rapidly get blurred. If one paid close attention, then he/she could hear the ‘grrrr-grrrr-grrr’ sound the metal tip made as it spun at top speed.

I longed to possess one. But Dad would not buy me one. He thought it was too dangerous for a 6 year old. I would hurt myself with its sharp tip. The boys won’t let me play with it either.

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Spinning tops still fascinate me. My son has one , though it looks much different. It is made of plastic and is safer. I love to watch my son play with it.