Announcing Free Book with Big Thank You!

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Very recently, my blog turned 2 and I feel gratitude as well as so much love for you. All of you have influenced me in your own individual ways. THANK YOU! Today, I am also mustering courage to present my 2nd Kids free ebook – ‘Who Ate The Moon?‘, available on Apple https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/who-ate-the-moon/id1206671343?mt=11.

The book is about two naughty brothers, Aala and Uja, who unhook the moon off the sky and hide it in a fireplace. But something or somebody eats the moon!!! To know more, download it for free…

The book is also available on Blurb http://www.blurb.com/b/7758497-who-ate-the-moon?ebook=614969 (Add to Cart and give your email Id) as well as Smashwords -https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/699450

In order to make the book even more accessible to our little ones, I have created a sort of audio book on YouTube. Please excuse my accent in the video. The book is less than 7 minutes long, fit for a quick watch.

My first ebook – The Princess with Brown Teeth was a huge learning experience for me. I have learnt a lot in this one too and am still learning. Your feedback, likes and share will help me immensely.

Thanks once again for being there for two long years!

Comic Relief

As they watched a movie in the theatre, little Avi fidgeted. “When will spiderman come?”, he asked. “Hush, he will come soon,” his mom whispered, making sure others watched in peace.

In the film, the dreaded biker’s gang was wrecking the town. And the heroine was murdered. Mom had teary eyes, when Avi interrupted again. “What about Spiderman?”, he asked. “Eat the popcorns, Spiderman will come at the end,” she tried to distract him. 

He ate for a while and began to play with the popcorns. While in the film, the hero was about to be killed and there was pin drop silence! Just then, to mom’s horror, the spidey fan vocalized loudly – 

Spiderman, Spiderman, 

Does whatever a spider can

Spins a web, any size,

Catches thieves just like flies, look out…

Embarassed, she scooped the little singer up and walked out of the theatre but the crowd cheered. The film was too intense, they needed comic relief!

(This is my entry to the flash fiction challenge, Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers hosted by the amazing Priceless Joy. We are given a photo prompt and approximately 75-175 words with which to create our stories. This challenge is open to all who would like to participate. Thank you Sunayana for the image. Please CLICK HERE for more.)

A Visa Wife’s Thoughts!

I am a visa wife. This means I am on a dependent visa while my husband is on H1B work visa in the US. My Visa is in H4 category, which is regressive to say the least. Now, while the techies are reeling due to uncertainities over H1B Visa Bill, which might become an act under President Donald Trump’s administration, I secretly rejoice.

It is also being rumoured that work permits of H4 visa holders, which was a part of 2015 Department of Homeland Security initiative by former President Barack Obama, might change. This means visa wives would not be allowed to earn any kind of income and may be restricted to cooking, cleaning and volunteering. In short, a completely dependent entity – emotionally, socialy and economicaly. 

I truly believe that US is a great country to live but if the work permit for H4, is cancelled, it would be a curse for Indian women, who accompany their husbands at the cost of their own ambitions. My stay in the US has been smooth and filled with happiness so far. And I had plans to be economically independent when my kids grew up a bit but under the present scenario, I find hope in returning to India. 

It wouldn’t have mattered if being a dependent was optional, but when one is forced into shadows, it’s unfair. 

If things change, I dream of going back and being surrounded by family and friends. Then, there will be the lovely Indian Maid – Kaam wali bai, whom I have missed almost every day!

Technology is here to stay and techies are like minions. They will find a big boss sometime soon even if there are job cuts due to the overhaul. They will not perish.

Truly speaking, it might be better for husbands if they stay in the US because work conditions are nicer here. Even kids are better off in the US. But for silently cooking and cleaning visa wives, who are away from society and independence, going  back to India would always be great.

Images courtesy Google

The Big Brother

He knew it was late. His mother would be anxiously waiting for him but he wanted to dilly dally. He wished, she could come down to receive him at the bus stop just like she used to do! But these days she was always busy with the whining little thing, they brought from the hospital. 

It was his dream to be a big brother but now he realised how challenging it was. The baby was a cranky one. If only they could replace her with a sweet, sleepy baby! He no longer liked being a big brother. He wanted constant attention from his parents more than ever.

Dragging his feet, he went home. His mother was at the door with the baby. She reproached him for loitering around. But the cranky one smiled. He ignored her. But she cooed again and held out her baby hand. 

His feelings changed from dejection to exhilaration! She was quite cute, after all!

(This is my entry to the flash fiction challenge, Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers hosted by the lovely Priceless Joy. We are given a photo prompt and approximately 75-175 words with which to create our stories. This challenge is open to all who would like to participate. Thank you Jessica Haines for the image. Please CLICK HERE for more.)

The Family’s Tree

As I leaned towards the ground before my final fall, her anxious face peeped through the glass. I knew I would miss her smile.

The kids were there too – noses pressed against the patio glass, anxious to see their tall friend being killed slowly. “Mumma, look they are pulling our tree!”

Yes, I was ‘their’ tree. Their only friend, after the family had migrated to this new land. Since the first day, they warmed up to me as I stood guard in front of their apartment. 

I entertained the kids by hosting squirrels, birds and insects on my barks. When spring came, I bore berries and flowers, cheering mom and dad. I adored them all.

Every morning, I waited for the lady to draw curtains. She would give me the sweetest smile before starting daily chores.

Today, she was not smiling rather frantically calling up someone in an attempt to save me – her dying companion! But it was too late now…

( Written in memory of a lovely tree that stood in front of our house when we moved to the US in 2013. It had to be cut last year due to maintenance reasons but we had spent some deeply touching moments with it. It had a beautiful soul.)

This is my entry to the flash fiction challenge, Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers hosted by the lovely Priceless Joy. We are given a photo prompt and approximately 75-175 words with which to create our stories. This challenge is open to all who would like to participate. Please CLICK HERE for more.

My Grandmother’s Sakhi!

Generally, vanity and jealousy are two strongest negative emotions in women. But when two women, surpass such base feelings, and form a sublime spiritual bonding, then great friendship happens.

Such was the case of my maternal grandmother and her Sakhi (friend) – a lovely, charming woman who always stood by her. Also, making of their friendship had its roots in the noble Sakhi Tradition – an ancient ritual of female bonding, practiced primarily by North Indian ladies.

Now, a little about this interesting tradition which unfortunately no longer exists – According to ‘Women’s Lives Women’s Rituals in the Hindu Tradition’, “The sakhi relationship represents a female-female union that imitates the marital bond, but may surpass blood or marital kinship bonds in terms of its professed meaningfulness in women’s lives.” 

The ritual would be initiated by tying a sacred thread or sending over some food or goodies to a lady with request to be friends. When the other party accepted, the ladies in question would take an oath to be a part of each other lives, stand by each other and actively participate in each other’s functions etc. 

They would promise each other – “Everyone including parents, spouse or kids may leave you but I will never leave you.” When such ritual friendships were formed, the bonding took on spiritual fervour. It was considered a great sin to bad mouth, cheat or betray a Sakhi.


It is said that this ritual had its roots in mythology – the relationship among Radha and her sakhis were very strong and they could feel each other’s emotions.

Something akin to this happened between my grandmother and Sakhi Nani (as we fondly called her). I don’t know who took the first step but they formed this sacred friendship. At that time they were young, beautiful brides in a village that observed strict purdah. They had to be meek and respectful… sort of stifled always. I guess, this relationship allowed them to be themselves – to talk and laugh freely. 

My grandma would cook special dishes for her Sakhi and send over to her house. Her sakhi responded with equal enthusiasm. My grandfather died when my mother was very young, Sakhi Nani and her family did their best to support my grandma during the worst phase of her life.

My grandmother later moved with us but she always missed her Sakhi. I never heard her mentioning one negative word about her throughout my life. She would keep aside little things to gift her special Sakhi. And it was fun whenever we went over to the village –  Sakhi Nani and her huge family always welcomed us with open arms. 

Sadly, both the Sakhis are no more but till date, even the little kids in our homes know the story of their great friendship.

This was a rare tradition of women-only participants in a male dominated society. We ladies have a private little world, filled with feelings, nostalgia and things that only a woman can understand. Wouldn’t it be great to share this with a lifelong Sakhi, who would not be judgemental!

These days when sacredness has left almost every relationship, I wish the beautiful tradition of Sakhi had lived on…

Images courtesy Google