The Birthday Treasure Hunt

The much awaited day is here. Nov 14.  This date could not be missed for this is a chance to prove how much I love him 🙂 🙂

This year was different. Dubai!!I feared, but regained my vigor.The new place may have limited my mobility, but certainly not my creativity. And again, every birthday is a challenge – to show how thoughtful and better I could be from how we celebrated it last time. Remember Monika (F.R.I.E.N.D.S.)?  So I compete with myself 🙂 🙂 to make it innovative, creative and enjoyable than last time. And google as usual – always helpful and friendly 🙂 🙂

“Normally people call and pass their wishes. Why not he call friends/family this time and get the wishes?”. This thought was the spark. So a treasure hunt was planned involving loved ones,gathered a few gifts from here&there.

A birthday card was created with a few handmade cards. It read so…

“Happy Birthday!! Its truely meant,

A few clues lead to your present.

Lets make your birthday eventful,

With a treasure hunt, so wonderful.

People will lead to places, back&forth,

And you’ll enjoy it from pillar to post. Please do!!

To compose the rhyme&verse, I may have brought out some nonsense.

So please fine tune to my composition and get started……”.

The card was dropped on his desk by a colleague, when he was away for prayers. Card had the first clue enclosed within and went on like this,

“A commonality holds so true, with this colleague than the other few.                 

Thesaurus says he is the king of woods, His kin resides in our neigbourhood“.

Prince was the only mallu colleague and stayed next door. An easy start!! Prince passed on the next clue.

“Waiting for you boy, is your new toy

Make sure you open the roof, before you unwind the loop”.

Our new car is his second love and his ‘new toy, he says’.The panoramic roof had a message from me and the purse behind the pillion seat carried the next clue and a gorgeous tie. Gift1 🙂  🙂

“This woman has seen you naked,

With her first son’s wife lies the next little secret”.

Husband’s big bro and family stayed nearby. After being playful for a while, big SIL disclosed the next clue 🙂

“This is where we spend our time,

Typing things, Reading online…”.

Laptop was the answer though it was initially misunderstood as facebook 🙂 Gift2 and the next lead was sincerely kept in his laptop by prince while he went in search of the previous clue.

“Before we ask, she understands

For she carries such a selfless heart.

The lady is awesome, gentleman so calm

They have a place, Oh! so warm.

A place to hog, A place to rest,

I would rather call it our own nest”.

Husband mistook this for his mother. Got hold of it after a while though…

Smitha (His X-colleague) and family were so close. She is an amazing cook and a true friend, so could not be spared from the list. Hogging and their house were so closely related 🙂 She gave him the next lead, ofcourse only after dragging the ISD call for a while.

“Books, Adaptors, Heels&Boots,

Games and other unknown loot…”.

Dumped with almost every mess in the room, our shoerack was so close to waste bin. So he came home, and continued the search. A few Strawberry dipped dark Chocolates from Edible arrangements were supposed to be inside along with the next clue. The home delivery came a few minutes after he was home and so was handed over in person 😦 Shoerack was an easy guess, but to find the clue from inside was a tough job. And finally when he found..

He may take time to get ready,

but for us he’ll always be steady.

An apple @ our home is his gift,

Now call him in search of your gift”.

My bro who was renowned for taking a long time to get ready, had gifted us an Ipod touch. So he expressed how expensive this bday is gonna be and dialled the next ISD no. After having some fun, bro gave away the hint.

“Underneath our welcome mat, All this time a clue has sat”.

Pretty straight forward. A key chain and the next track came from under the mat.

“Wish we could span the miles,

Hold them close and bring them smiles.

They may be far, but why to fear?

Take the phone and call them dear”.

Sheetal was a friend from college and we got along so well with the couple. They had moved to US sometime back and so we always mentioned about missing them and meeting them. The clue was vague, but he guessed it right.Next ISD call.

“This is were we dump our dress,

Right now, Its mostly just a mess”.

Our cloth basket. Carried a belt and the next clue was revealed.

“You see each other less these days,

But she’ll be close to you always.

You loved her right from the start,

The tie that binds are from the heart”.

His sister and family lived far. But the guesswork was perfect!! She gave the next lead.

“Go,look somewhere nice and cold,

Where hopefully you’ll find no mold”.

Freezer!!Even before opening he asked again guessed it to be an ice cream cake. Baskin Robbins icecream cake was always in the want-to-try list 🙂 🙂 The cover had the next hint.

“Where could I go? Where should I be?

Stop playing games, come and find me”.

The initial plan was to book for a buffet in a nearby restaurant with Cobone Coupons. Me and daughter would wait for him at the lounge and once he tries to find us we would reveal the place. That could have been a perfect end to the hunt, coupons got over before I could book. I thought of hiding somewhere else, but couldn’t manage one more gift. There were other ways to add fun 😉 but sadly nothing worked out and I was there right beside him when he read the clue. That was sad!! But he did enjoy the way his birthday stood one step ahead of the previous ones’. 🙂 :-).

So let me wish myself better luck next time and stop from making it lengthier…Ahem!!Next time perhaps I may gift him a physical trainer. Looks like he is really in need of one 🙂

Incase any of you think it would be useful for you, please try…

Reference :


Ever belittled your baby? – Part2

After reading my blog on our Prudent Pari, a few friends shared their experiences.

My friend’s kiddo is 1.5 yrs and always insists that TV should be on. Once when she said there is no power @ home, and so no TV. The little guy points at the fan which was running and gives a ‘What the hell’ look.

The same little fellow once saw his papa struggling with mosquitoes in the evening trying to shoo them, kill them and what not. Son takes his father’s hand, walks to the refrigerator and points onto the top. There lied an Electric mosquito zapper. He is a smart pants!!

Our niece had visitors @ home. She was trying to show off her toys to the guests when one of them asked what she wants to become when she gets big. Without any second thoughts she mentions that she wants to cook and eat some good food when she gets bigger 🙂

Niece doesnt leave grand parents too. MIL had been to Dubai for a vacation. She bought a pair of ear rings and a bangle for her. The young lady immediately wanted to know when they will go back. ”When you come back next time, bring me one more bangle, ok”. Very specific,eh?

When our niece turned 4, the parents put her in Pre KG. She liked the school but dint like school bus. Mother was reading ‘Malgudi Days’ when she came home.

Niece: “Why can’t Papa take me to school Amma?”

Mom: “Because he has to go to office”

Niece: “Why don’t you take me then?”

Mom: “Because I do not have a license”.

Niece: “You sit and study some text book rather than sitting on this story book. If you study well, you can take license amma, don’t worry”.

Another friend has a son who went to play school since he was 1.5 yrs. So at the age of 3, when he went to school, he stood their like a hero when all the other children were crying. When he was back, he told his parents.”Am not going to that school anymore. The students act like small babies, yelling “Amma,Amma” all the time. Put me into a school were children behave according to their age”. The parents were proud but they worry if the little one will become independent too soon…

My friend is lucky to have her parents next door. Once for some kitchen-ingredient-emergency she had to run to her parents’ flat.WHen she was back,son stood at the door with a big face. “Amma, next time when you go out, please don’t forget to wear your duppatta. If not, people will say, Puppy Shame”. What more to say?!?!?!.

Love for brushes!!

If bombs could be made from Tooth brushes, we would have definitely been detained in Dubai airport. Our suitcases contained nearly 20 tooth brushes – all of different sizes, shapes and brands and contributed from different people with love 🙂 Still wondering why it was overlooked during the security scan.

We have been carrying a set of tooth brushes wherever we go since Pari has developed a weird fancy for them. And that’s why people contribute them to her collection 🙂 The cluster now range from finger brushes to baby brushes to fancy brushes, normal brushes of different brands, a paint brush and a hair brush. Its fun to see her counting them and holding onto them like her babies. She bathes them, feed them, play with them, hug them and sleep with them. “If I were a tooth brush, she would have kissed me”, hubby comments after he gives up begging her for a kiss. She has a very limited stock of kisses, most of which are bagged by her tooth brushes.

Guests often wonder why there are disseminated tooth brushes all over the rooms. It is difficult to describe her favorite pastime, so we have started giving the typical ‘embarrassing smiles’ and taking it as one of those countless times when children embarrass parents 🙂 🙂

She wakes up asking, “Amma, Toot Beesh”.. We are happy that she atleast calls me before tooth brush even though importance is given the other way. Every time I take her to the loo, she grabs two of our tooth brushes, plays with it, comes out with it, her face pink with the happiness of freedom fighters holding flags in both their hands and adds to her collection. But the collection is hidden most of the time that everyday morning half an hour is spend on tooth brush search 🙂 🙂

When my brother was setting up their home Pari was around and gave an expression as though we were giving her tooth brushes one tenth of this new brush that she saw – Toilet Brush. So we should be happy that she has not started collecting that one. Phew!! 🙂

We would have been happier if she loved brushing the same way. Alas!! With all her strength she resist brushing but still love her ‘Beesh’. The sad part is that with more than 20 tooth brushes at home, me, Sayf and Pari (at times on her own) have to use the same brush when it comes to the time when real brushing is required.

We would have been happy if she loved brushing the same way. Alas!!With all her strength she resist brushing but still love brushes.

The Secret of her health – Post 11

“You are blessed to have a very gentle kid”,..Lotof them say after they meet an all time bubbly daughter. Yeah!!She is indeed gentle, though not all the time. And that time is when she has to eat something.

Personally, I feel that the biggest challenge in bringing up a baby is to feed them properly. A huge percentage of mothers would agree with me. Babies may be different, but most of them turn hard to be pleased when it comes to eating.

My girl however gets on my nerves every time she has to eat, esp after she turned one. So her activities increased. Crawling to walking and now running, but she consumes less which has made her lean and not to mention, anyone who has met her in India doesn’t forget to pass on the comment, “Oh!!Your daughter has become a lot thinner after you have started looking after her on your own”. 🙂 🙂 They never forget to tell my parents once they are back. So after they too started getting on my nerves, I knew something had to be done.

She looks at the food, smells it and then tastes it. Doesn’t like any of the three, it will be rejected. Stubborn , so stubborn she used to be… And there would be a trail of food that she would spit wherever she goes. Life was just like this Junior Horlicks ad.

I tried to force feed her. She dint care.

I asked doctors for help. They asked me to switch to a different set of vegetables and fruits. Dint work.

I sought advises from friends who had recently turned mothers. Potatoes, almonds, ghee….No satisfactory output.

Five months in Dubai and she dint gain even 200 gms. Doctors were cool, but I was not. I knew her eating habits had to be changed. But she simply was not interested in eating, except chappatis and chocolates.

The strike was on forever, but now things have changed for the better. She has started eating properly.Her weight has finally fallen into the graph. If someone asks her about the secret of her health, she would grin and say “Poopy”  🙂  Poopy is an education oriented animated childrens content, developed by Hibiscus Digital Media and Pari is in love with it. This 3D movie is definitely above standards in terms of content and presentation. Pari has now started recognising the animals, knows to imitate them and dances to the tune of her dear show.

Am not sure if this is a good habit to be cultured, but there wasn’t any other option. She is just so indulged in the stories and songs that she doesn’t really bother what goes inside her mouth. So easy to feed. Definitely worth a try.

Lesser messy house + Healthy baby = A Very Happy Me!! Thanks Poopy!!

Disclaimer: This is a note from my experience

Ever belittled your baby? – Post 7

Pari’s arrival has affected our outings a lot, esp weekend dinners. The ambience of the restaurants keep her happy only till the food arrives. Before I have my first and most awaited bite onto that lovely chicken, she would get doleful. I would have to take her for a round and amuse her while Sayf has his dinner. Once he is done and takes his turn, I will do the dining.

We have tried lot of tricks, most of which failed, though she has given us some luxury by sleeping. So last weekend we planned to take her to a café where they have life size dolls of goats. Goats, being intimate friends, were supposed to divert her attention while we could have dinner together.

Pari imitates a lot of animals. She would be hardly an year old when I played “Baa Baa Black Sheep” and she started saying “Baaaahhaahaa”. The shiver in the sound was quite interesting that we began teaching her to imitate other animals too. That is still her best-loved game. We name the animals, she gives the sound and goat remains her favorite. In a few months, she grew far beyond all of that, recognizes each animal from her cartoon shows and imitates them on her own.

So according to the plan, when she was put down, I took her to the array of goats and started saying “Goat, Goat”.. There she was thrilled and ran around them mocking “Baaaahhaahaa”. I could see an energized Sayf. Two reasons – Pari was enjoying and We could have our dinner in peace. Thought of leaving her with the goats when the young lady gave me a weird look and said, “Amma… Paava, Paava”. Paava is doll in malayalam.

I was baffled. Excited that my little doll understood it and embarrassed that I belittled her.

KIDS!! They observe us so well and learn from us much faster than we imagine. And WE!!. We underestimate their understanding because they can’t reciprocate in our language. That may be why they often outsmart us 🙂 🙂

Sayf too had a perplexed look. Yeah!! Dinner was at stake again..


FRIENDS!! All of us are blessed with abundance of friends.We love to remember everything about them. The time we met, to the time we fought, to the time we discovered each other, to the time we shared everything from sandwich to secrets, to the time we became cozy, to the time we became lovers and a lot other times…. In fact most of the fond memories of life are fastened to friends, who become an integral ingredient of our lives in no time. Just one question. Are all of you in touch with all of them?
As the unpredictable life detours the track to our inevitable destinations, we get dropped by a few others and drop a few on the way, get carried by a few and carry a few others along with, in the sincere hope of keeping in touch with them forever. Later we become conscious that most of them would have vanished, only those memories linger within…
We joined school as an innocent set of children and watched ourselves growing into mischievous but sweet, adorable little girls.We lived nearby, ate together, played together, reserved seats for each other in the school bus and remained together for that whole span of 11 yrs, until we parted in 10th, long back in ’97. 5 of us, are now scattered in different parts of the globe.We do not meet anymore, what’s even worse, we barely know what happens in each others lives until the school reunion 3 yrs back. Thanks to the organisers!!
11th,12th and then graduation, earned me a good amount of friends, most of whom I deeply adored and thought the relation would never end. Today after 7 yrs of graduation, I can count the ones meld with me in just one hand.There are few people at work too, but as soon as I switch companies or quit job, the same is likely to happen.
One of my old friend’s mentioned recently.”It takes a lot of time and effort to be in touch with friends. I would prefer to be happy with the people whom you have around”. Perhaps this is the right attitude to live in this world.
To me keeping in touch is not a chore.I value corresponding and do not like to send “ are you?” one liners. Possibly, my circle of friends is too huge to be within my reach, or may be I should start believing that good things do not always stay forever,…
Some get married, fly abroad, after which there would not be any news. Some go on site for work or higher studies and evaporate in style 🙂 Some of them may sincerely want to keep in touch, but procrastinate. Some may have starting troubles. They do not avoid me, I know for sure. But I just get dwindled in their busy lives.
Thanks to the social networking sites – orkut and Facebook, under the mercy of whom, I am informed that some of them are married and some have children. Some who travel abroad, post a few pics in the initial enthusiasm which fades again with time.  At the least, orkut birthday announcement makes me happy that they too are getting as old as I do 🙂
If any of my friends happens to read this, let me tell that this post is dedicated to you, esp. this line, “WE CAN NEVER BE FAR APART FROM THOSE WHO ARE SO CLOSE AT HEART”….. I would still love to rekindle the flame of friendship and keep them alive,…

The Economy Baby

”I always wanted a girl, but after I walked into a baby shop am relieved that I have a boy. The price tags were so shocking”, a friend joked when she called to convey her love for Pari. Yeah!! She is so right.Fashion has crept so much into all kinds of baby accessories, making them highly expensive. Baby dresses, toys, dolls, feeding bottles, knee pads have all grown beyond budget.

A decent salwar for me would be around 700+. One for Pari would fall in the same range with less than half the amount of cloth. So do I stop buying? No!!They are just too tempting that I can hardly walk out of a shop without a pair of dresses and a matching socks for my darling daughter 🙂 She is going to be an year old on the coming Feb, and I have even plans on what kind of birthday cake we should have. This is no flaunting. Its only a way to celebrate my happiness.I am no big spender, but there are times I cant help buying for Pari. Someone inside keeps telling that my daughter should not miss anything. And then I just get lost in the stunning world of baby toys. I want her the one that sings her favorite rhyme, one that is the most colorful, one that could drive her attention, one that is handy for her, one that does not hurt her, one that she could use later etc etc.. And this ‘one’ would turn out to be expensive. After all our children should get the best!!Not sure if that’s an excuse also?!?!?

But Pari seems to be a lot concerned about the expenses on her and her mother’s attitude 🙂 So she has started to unearth a completely new set of toys, all on her own. My chappals are the favorite of all. When I shoo her off from that vicinity, she grabs her powder tin and bangs it on the floor as a protest. Now that she has started crawling, the dust bin has mesmerized her with its variety. The waste bin is two times Pari, but I once caught her picking and licking a chocolate cover from inside. Any time she cries badly, the rattling of a plastic cover makes her happy. She is often discovered from under  a pile of news papers or curled inside our French window curtain. Everyday she would explore a new tooth paste cover or diaper rash cream tube and play with it for hrs. This innocent lady was once seen following an ant trail and beating the ants that came last… Baby joys sprouting from baby observations!!

Bhavia and Snoopy were home this weekend with cute petite laptop for Fareiba. Am a major fan of her laptop now but Pari seems to fancy the hard board cover in which the laptop came.

Finding something to make her smile has become a lot easier for me. But she smiles too sweet that my friends can’t resist buying her a gift. But when they inquire, I wonder what would she be interested in? May be I should ask them for a salwar to use when she gets bigger 🙂