A gift for kids – Short Bedtime Story of Nidra Devi

Here is what happens when the Goddess of Sleep, falls asleep herself! How will she wake up? Who will save the world? Read this free 5-minutes tale in this blog to know more.

‘Nidra Devi Goes to Sleep’ is a present for your little ones from my side for being good at home and bravely coping with the ‘new normal’ like a superhero.

    Nidra Devi Goes to Sleep

As a child, everyone must have known Nidra Devi. But as grownups, we have all forgotten about her and her stories.

She is the goddess of sleep! Just thinking about her makes us YAWN and yearn for sweet slumber in a cozy bed.

She arrives in the moment juuust before we sleep, carrying a bucket full of dreams that she pours on our eyelids. And our eyes close, voice slurs, bodies relax, and we begin to breathe rhythmically zzz… She is very tiny, soft, light, and feathery. Her presence is as soothing as cold breeze during hot summertime.

She is somewhat like tooth fairy but very, very shy. No one has seen her; some kids have tried but they could not. She does not like being seen, I believe.

This is the story of the night when Nidra Devi fell asleep, herself.  Wait, what, how??? Well, that night was different. Something strange had happened. It was not normal. People were tossing and turning in their beds. Even animals and birds were awake. And magical creatures like fairies, hobbits, elves wondered – Where was Nidra Devi?

Well, our dear Nidra Devi had an accident. That evening, when she was flying down from the sky, her tiny wings flapped in the strong wind and she accidentally toppled the dream bucket over herself.

Some of the dreams went into her eyes, and in her drowsy state she landed on Earth. Nearby, there was a dark underground cave and she was so sleepy that she went inside to sleep.

Meanwhile, every being on the Earth was awake. Animals howled, birds chirped, babies wailed, kids cried, and grownups were cranky without sleep. It was a terrible night. But the second night was even worst because Nidra Devi kept sleeping.

Life became terrible after that.  There were no lullabies for babies, no sweet dreams for children and no relaxation for anyone. Tired people began to walk like zombies.  Everyone was worried but no sleep came. Unaware of the chaos in the world, Nidra Devi slept on for six days in that underground cave.

She saw scary dreams of hollow-eyed people and kids crying for comfort but just could not wake up. It seemed like too much dream liquid had gone into her eyes.

All the demi-gods were worried. How to wake up Nidra Devi? Who could reach that dark, underground cave quickly? Who would save the world?

On the seventh day, one Tiny Ray of Light, offered to wake up Nidra Devi and save the world. “You are small and insignificant, how will you wake her up,” the demi-gods laughed at him. “Oh, I can! I travel faster than anything else. And a ray of light can reach the darkest place and make a difference,” he said.

The demi-gods did not believe him but gave him a chance because really no one could travel as quickly as light.

So, the Tiny Ray of Light wore his brightest costume and emerged from the Sun. Piercing the darkest corners of the earth, and getting reflected from shiny surfaces, he found a crevice in the cave, where Nidra Devi slept.

He entered through the crevice like a little superhero, and at once, the dark cave lit up. Finally, Nidra Devi woke up with a start.

“Oh, I have been sleeping and the world is in chaos. Thank you for waking me up or else horrible things would have happened. You are a little super-hero! I will call you – Superhero Ray. You saved the world!” Nidra Devi said gratefully and flew out of the cave to do her duty. The demi-gods applauded, and everyone thanked the Tiny Ray of Light.

That night, tired and gloomy people of the Earth became hopeful again. Nidra Devi worked extra hard to pour sweet dreams on everyone. With big yawns, slurring voices and heavy bodies, people went to bed early. Everyone slept very peacefully after seven days of chaos. And Nidra Devi created funny dream-videos of Superhero Ray, especially for kids.

And the Tiny Ray of Light felt proud of himself. He never knew he could make that BIG a difference! He became famous as Superhero Ray because he had illuminated the world!

(Images based on drawings by Adiraj Singh.)

Small Things#26 – Distance learning on the go!

The third trimester in the U.S. schools is from April to June, when education is in full swing but this year, Covid 19 has changed everything.

Educators are scampering for smooth running of distance learning programs to complete the courses. Their efforts are laudable in reaching out to every student through apps like Seesaw, Starfall and Epic.

But really, onus is now on parents to coordinate and make sure that kids are doing their tasks rather than exploring stuff on the tablets and iPads – the devices that were once banned at homes.

At my place, the distance learning was a little haphazard with mixed up activities and responses in the first week but this week it is better. I believe, homeschooling kids would be tough for working parents (working from home due to coronavirus) who might have to to balance work while making sure the kids are doing their job in between meal times and other duties.

Parenting and distance learning are now going side by side. Task it is, but it’s for the sake of our kids, right? So, I am thankful and have started getting a hang of how homeschooling works.

Teachers post activities on the Seesaw app and communicate through emails while students are expected to respond and answer. There is also a timetable that divides the time to what they are expected to do every 30 minutes. It is hard to enforce the time table at home, so it is made flexible and that is a relief.

Also, the principal and teachers are posting some videos to make it all look normal to the kids. And they are asking for feedback and help to make it work. Great effort!

There are a few glitches which we need to handle because I believe this distance learning will last till the end of the term or may be more than that.

As for me, I am learning to handle my third graders math problems in the way he has been taught (which is so different from what I learned decades ago).

It should be remembered that there are no prescribed text books or answer copies in the U.S. Students do not carry books and notebooks to school. It is all hands on learning, which is different from how I studied.

I am also learning to manage the learning apps with my kindergartner. I am trying to make it all work. I guess, the distance learning is also educating me, in a different way.

Education is a shared commitment among students, educators and parents. In the current scenario, I feel, enthusiastic involvement of parents is required more than ever. “Children are the priority, change is the reality, collaboration is the strategy.”

The great thing is – We are in this together!

Images courtesy Google

 

 

 

 

 

Paw Things#5 – A dog’s thoughts amidst Coronavirus spread!

Bow wow from Happy! Well guys, can someone tell me what’s going on? What kind of emergency situation is this? There is a big question mark on my face.

The dad is getting more stuff than usual. What is the need of a cart full of grocery? The mom is forcing brothers to wash hands frequently.

She is constantly giving directions – wash your hands, don’t touch this, go change your clothes…! She is even rationing food items. Imagine!

I have never seen them like this. Is this normal for humans to panic or something else is going on? I am just seven months old so still learning, you see!

The brothers are clueless too as the changes are being made around us. They are feeling restricted and not going out at all. Kids sitting at home, how boring is that! The weather is nice today but not many people are socializing. Hmmm…

I heard the mom talking on phone that schools and colleges are closing. The stores are running out of supplies. President Trump might announce something today. I feel like asking them – hope you guys have stored dog food, ahem!

Are they under reacting or over reacting? I don’t know! All I hear is corona… corona…something virus is spreading.

Nine people have got it in Minnesota. Well, good that everyone is taking precautions but I would like to tell them that the panic part is unnecessary.

There might be something positive in this emergency situation after all since the world is coming together to fight it.

Also, it is making people grateful for what they already have and aware of things that they might have been taking for granted – health, food, family, society etc…

Well, guys, I am taking a break from this Corona something virus and going to play with my ball. Care to join, huh? Stay safe and healthy. Bow wow!

Plans may not work for new mothers, but moments do!

When my kids were little and I was in a new country away from family and friends, I often felt stuck and overburdened. No plan ever worked, there was no respite from constant care giving and it was a struggle to even have a proper bath.

At that time someone told me – Just take one day at a time as no plan works around babies and concentrate on moments… This advice of taking one day at a time, specifically, one moment at a time worked wonders for me. Because the struggle and stress due to failed plans, unfinished tasks and over-expectations were not there.

In retrospect, I realize that since I started concentrating on moments, other things began to fall in place. By focusing on little things, big things happened by default. I became more open and flexible to accepting changes in plans.

If the day would go smoothly, I would be grateful to the baby and the almighty. If it would be a hard day, I knew the struggle won’t last. Things would change the next day or the day after. And amidst these fun and struggling moments, I found my creative moments too. I managed to create this precious blog that improved me in many ways.

There were times when I felt others were going way ahead of me socially and career-wise. You know how social-media is, right? It over activates the green eyed monster who pokes and pinches you when you see people striding ahead, having fun, going places etc.

Well, little by little, the monster stopped bugging me because I had began to enjoy my own moments. My kids were a revelation to me and I felt how easy it was to enjoy ‘NOW’ with a baby around. That divine form, baby gestures and language.. I was hooked.

I also think I was lucky in many ways because I was not facing financial issues and got solid support from my husband. It is harder for those who have to work and have no support but still, I think, concentrating on moments would cut down the stress drastically.

Now, I make plans and follow a routine since there are no cranky babies to feed or care for. My kids go to school. I am beginning to concentrate on my ambitions and life again. This is great too! I know I am far behind my peers career-wise and it feels like I am starting from scratch again. Also my preferences and considerations have changed, so I am looking for a different career path. But it does not really bother me because the babyhood days of my kids have taught me a lot.

And amidst all this, if you ask me – Which is a better experience – life with plans or life with moments? I would say – life with plans is very comfortable and smooth but life with moments was simply divine!

The moments happened automatically with babies around. And I am glad I didn’t rush through them in pursuit of other plans. Other plans hardly worked out but moments always did! I am glad that I followed that advice…

Images courtesy Google

Paw Things#4 – A blog by a Dog (cute pics included)

 

Hi, there! I am Happy. It has been long since someone wrote something about me. Hmmm…so, I took the liberty to post my own Paw Things with many selfies and pics.

I am all grown up now, but still have that cute puppy face. Don’t you think so?

In January, I was unwell for about a week and there seemed to be a major health issue. It scared my family. But all turned out well in the end.

I am all hale and hearty now. I love to run in the snow and sniff around. I probably scare off the hibernating rabbits and squirrels. But what the heck, Spring is coming…they should gear up!

No, snow does not bother me at all. I love to eat a mouthful every now and then, when no one is watching.

There is something about the lake. I love to meditate near it.

This is my favorite spot. And my favorite thing in the world? Sleep Yoga!

I always wait for the boys to come from school. It is super exciting when they get down from the bus and run towards home.

I had fun sledding with the boys!

Yesterday, the boys enjoyed adding effects to my pic. Hmmm…do I look grumpy? Grumpy-Happy Dog!

Hope you enjoyed my pictures. I think Spring is around the corner and we will have more outdoor activities. I will share more pics soon. Till then, bye from Happy! Love Bark!