Anecdote: Haldiram’s is Healthyram’s?

My five-year-old recently learnt about the difference between need and want foods. He was informed that milk, eggs and green leafy veggies are need while cake, chocolates etc are want.

But recently his one observation left me in splits. He asked me whether sweets like Rasgullas, Pedas and Barfis are healthy? I said, “No, sweets are want.”  He retorted in his American accent, “But sweets come from Healthy-ram’s, Right.” I couldn’t help laughing aloud!

Haldiram’s is an extremely popular sweets and snack brand in India. And it’s snack items are available in US too. We often buy Haldiram’s sweets so, my Kindergartener probably put two and two together and concluded that – Haldiram’s is Healthyram’s!

I guess the advertisers would adore the line!


Images courtesy Google

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Cute book by a 9 year old!


The Talking Fish by the talented nine-year-old, Shrey Jha has taken me by surprise. 

The little author has come up with a cute and creative first ebook. His talent shines out in every page. He is going to make a wonderful, entertaining author. 

The Talking Fish is free and you can download through Itunes as well as read it on Blurb books. Do leave reviews for it will do wonders to the confidence of our little, budding author.

He has dedicated the ebook to his aunt, Shivangi Singh(that is me, folks and I am sooo flattered), and ends the book with a sweet message for all his friends and readers. 

As for what happens in The Talking Fish, find out for yourself…! Cheers!

Khakhra


Little Brinda could not comprehend how it happened! All she saw was a jar containing some spice getting attracted to the old lady’s fingers. Her hand seemed to be sort of magnet! Was this lady a witch?

She watched as the scrawny lady grinded all kinds of spices. She kept murmuring something and Brinda got scared to even breathe in that strangely aromatic house.

“I shouldn’t have listened to grandma,” Brinda thought. But grandma had bad cough and the doctor’s medicines were ineffective. That morning granny said to Brinda,”Only old Khakhra can help me. Can you get the cough mixture…but don’t tell your parents.”

She agreed for grandma’s sake but knew that Khakhra was weird!

The mixture was almost ready and Khakhra smiled revealing crooked teeth. Brinda accepted the medicine bag and planned to run.

But Khakhra clutched her hand. Brinda held her breath as she pressed something into her palm and released her. 

Once home, panting and jittery, Brinda opened her fist – it was her favourite orange candy! 

(The character of Khakhra is based on a lady in my maternal grandmother’s village. She was rumoured to be a witch but actually she was quite nice. I met her when I was little.)

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. Thank you Maria for the image!

On the other side of the mirror!

 I see her everyday. The mother, the wife, the homemaker! I witness her pitter patter since morning as she packs lunch for husband and kid, in a hush hush way as to not rouse the baby sleeping in the bedroom.

But the baby is a light sleeper, he wakes up. She rushes to him. She has become an expert in doing chores while balancing the babe in one arm. She manages again!

When the hubby and kid leave, she catches her breath before tending to the little one. Juggling between bathing him, diaper change, feeding and cleaning up, she manages to gulp down her cold breakfast.

She has to plan out her day according to the routine of the baby. The bathroom and lunch preparing time would be when the baby sleeps. She puts the baby to sleep. The baby acts cranky. Her arms and back ache but she tries to soothe him.

Perhaps, the baby feels sympathetic towards mommy and sleeps at last. She enters the bathroom, just then the phone rings! She rushes out of the bath fearing the baby would wake up, but thankfully he doesn’t. She rushes through the conversation and hangs up quickly. She takes a quick shower and performs her ritual prayer.

It is time to prepare lunch. The baby wakes up before time. She has to play the jugglar again. She cooks as well as humours the little one. They play hide and seek and funny little games. She finds heaven in these moments.

She tries to relax after lunch. The older one returns, excited and chattering about his day in school. It is time to pay exclusive attention to him. The kid wants her to play with him. While his energy level is high, she has just her will power to hold on to. She has to keep an eye on both of them now.


Evening times are chit chat time. But I seldom hear her talk. She enjoys listening to them. Dinner is prepared and served. The husband helps as much as he can. He always does. She knows it was a long day for him too and feels loved!

Her body is sore when she goes to bed, ready for nighttime waking and feeding. She thinks and plans for the next day…food, grocery, kids’ school, doctor’s visit… a myriad things. She sleeps ready to wake up with the slightest stir or movement of the baby.

It is during her night time waking, between feeds, that she comes to me. It is the only time she looks at me closely. I, her mirror image, stare back at her! I try to look for that once carefree girl with a hundred dreams in her eyes…I do not see those eyes. The girls’ eyes were bright, ambitious and playful. Her eyes are different. She is different, the girl is gone.

These eyes are of a mother, who seldom thinks of herself. She is illkempt, preoccupied and always in a hurry. Everyday I look at the different shades on her face…sometimes she is irritated and tired, at other times she looks contented and occassionally she is ruffled, but one shade is dominant throughout – It is that of pride! Pride in fact that she is doing her duty well.

She knows the dreams of the ‘girl in her’ can wait. But the heavenly moments of motherhood will never ever come back. Her kids need her now, nothing else matters. After a few years, she will have enough time for herself then she will miss it all…hugging, feeding, playing…everything. The lady in one of the stores had rightly advised her – pay attention to your kids, they grow up very fast. The woman on the other side of the mirror has put motherhood above everything else that matters, like millions of mothers across the world.

She believes Motherhood is a ‘tapasya’, a state of selflessness that enables one to experience the sublimest and divinest emotions.

I look at her and read her mind everyday. At times, I feel sort of restlessness in her. It is a fact that not many admire or value a homemaker, and this affects her sense of worth. But next moment, that feeling of pride returns, her temporary conflict disappears and she becomes a contented mother again. I, her mirror image, admire her soft face at such times.

But I also want to keep reminding her of the girl, she once was. And I will resolutely do that. For I know, when her kids grow up and there will no more be aching arms, swollen eyes and lullabys, the dreamy girl in her, will keep her company. The girl will show her purpose of life further…after the kids move on in life. The girl is her essence, and she should be in touch with her.

Till then, I wish happy motherhood to her…to my beloved mirror image!

(This post is dedicated to all mothers, working and non working, who I am sure have great stories to tell about motherhood. This is my story! I have been a SAHM ( Stay At Home Mother) since the past five years and it has been the most memorable and rewarding phase in my life.)

The strange dream house!

“The A&B Building was made entirely from driftwood.” My grandmother informed me, pulling me closer. “And it would crop out of nowhere overnight at any secluded area and lure innocent victims inside,” she informed. She warned me never to venture inside such buildings as strange things happened there.

I believed her every word but forgot the warning. I earnestly wished to enter that driftwood house so that I could see those ‘strange things’.

One day, as I was playing along the beach near my home, I saw the driftwood building materialise near the shore. My parents were talking so I just slipped away. I entered the inviting house.  And was I delighted? It was every child’s dream house. I played on and on and ate and ate….

After a while, when I missed home.  I looked for an exit and walked out of the house. To my horror, the world had changed and I had grown very old!

This story is a part of the wonderful ‘Mondays Finish The Story Challenge’ by Barbara Beacham. She provides us with a photo prompt, the first sentence, and approximately 150 words with which we are to use to write our story. To take up the challenge click hereMFtS