All My Pretty Possessions

I love my stuff. I love getting new things. I like discovering how they work, am ecstatic when they work the way they’re supposed to and most of all I love how it makes me feel when I use them.

My all time favorites have been books and cameras…of course I keep buying knickknacks that I don’t actually need either but we’ll tackle that in a different blog post.

Red, bless his patience and general I don’t-really-care-what-you-buy-as-long-as-I-don’t-have-to-be-responsible-for-itness, bought me an action camera- a GoProHe’s rather indifferent about photography and prefers not to have to pose or scan through 200 pictures but appreciates a “pretty picture” and generally images of MLM in all his joyous glory aka whopping it up like a monkey or the occasion smiles.

Given that our travels, spare time and overall recreation seldom is a still activity, I’d been hankering for something that gave me the tools to capturing a child in motion and images where getting wet was the norm rather than the exception and GoPro was the answer.

And with the particular one I have, it’s easy enough to tote it around in your pocket and not have to deal with lens changes, filters yada yada yada!

And it’s been a JOY to use this. Very few things make me as happy as something working the way it’s supposed to work, without quirks and too much thought going into figuring things out.

I’ve just started capturing some trial shots of the offspring and other friends in the pool and with a holiday just around the corner, I should be able to do justice to some images in the sea as well.

*picture a chubby woman skipping and clapping her chubby hands in utter glee*

This is a feeling nearly incomparable and I’ve also been heard telling the offspring to handle the camera with care because I like it more than I liked him!

Happy happy days!

P.S: Images from the pool session are uploaded in my photoblog…here.

P.P.S: technology amazes me to no end!

Yet Another Epiphany

I had another Ah-HA! experience this morning while “attempting” to explain to MLM why something is desirable and why something isn’t. People (parenting experts, those whose kids are no longer a pain-in-the-ass and those who are blissfully childless) usually say that it sets a bad example to communicate with a growing child using largely negatives viz “NO”, “NOT”. “DONT” et al. However, given that the vocabulary of most children who aren’t prodigies or savants of some kind are largely rudimentary till the middle school years, it becomes a tough job navigating the world of communicating what you want with what your child can comprehend.

But I have finally realized the biggest challenge I face day in and day out while trying to bring this boy up- I have to be an adult in the face of his childishness. And therein lies the rub. I no longer know how to be a child and he’s not reached that stage where he knows anything else but how to be a child.

Just a few minutes back, I had another locking-horns session with my offspring. Reason? He’s been using a turtle stencil to draw outlines on an otherwise pristine ivory colored wall. Again.

The first time this was noticed and commented upon, he apologized. In a flash. And went off to do whatever it is he does when one road to mischief has been shut down. Today when I noticed the second drawing I called him to ask why he had drawn on the walls again when he knew it wasn’t appreciated at all. He simply replied that he wanted to. No defiance. No attitude. Just a simple statement of fact.

And that in nutshell is how children usually are. While some are more compliant, for reasons known only to them, others are more willful in the sense that they are guided largely by their whims. A state that many older people fall back into in their advanced years.

But try as I might, I couldn’t explain to MLM why I was upset. He finally came up with a solution of wiping it off with water. But the crux of the problem escaped him and it entirely escaped me how to clue him in.

As adults we live with and in cliches. We stay in the lines. It starts by learning to color in them, writing within in, standing in them and also driving in them. We don’t always turn into lab rats or hamsters in their wheels but we become regulated. And can also see the benefits of such a life for its opposite is chaos in some form or the other.

But a child, especially one right out of early childhood is all about seeing his or her environment as a giant canvas, playground or anything without boundaries. They want to color furiously all over the paper. Never mind that the dam fruit they were to color got buried under the strokes. They want to scribble on walls because that’s the largest unending surface that surrounds them everyday. They want to climb higher, use the bed as a trampoline because everything that gives them a sense of freedom, even briefly, is exhilarating. Never mind that you’ll be replacing the mattress or the bed springs will poke through before long. It’s just so much more fun than just calmly lying down somewhere and sleeping.

And this is why I blogged this. Right here and now. So when I’m about to have an aneurysm tomorrow or day after from whatever my son wasn’t supposed to have done but did so anyhow; I can take a quick peek at this post before my head blows up. Hell! I’ll have to clean up that mess too so I might as well read these pearls of wisdom and count to a 1000 and keep telling myself there’s always school and the next summer holidays are a year away.

Amen!

2014: A Retrospective of Movies

Image courtesy- www.moviedeskback.com

Compared to other years, I’ve actually gone out and watched quite a few movies in 2014. My quite a few might be still a pitiful number but I was averaging one movie a year after MLM was born so anything that takes me beyond that number is just dandy!

I downloaded (ahem ahem) quite a few recent movies as well in the past year and rather enjoyed some of them while others were  in the watch’em-delete’em category.

Some of the stuff that stayed with me from 2014 were:

I wasn’t too impressed with How To Train Your Dragon-2 barring the new dragons they introduced. I didn’t see why Stoick had to be killed off. But Toothless as the alpha was a bit over the top for me. Still…dragons, fire, flying..what’s not to enjoy?

Incidentally I watched about 5-6 movies in the theaters this time around so half the fun was that. Plus the nachos and the popcorn…leave it. Am a hog.

The stuff that was a strictly one-time watch were:

  • 22 Jump Street (did not understand how this got good reviews).
  • Guardians of the Galaxy (the retro soundtrack made me nostalgic)
  • X-Men: Days of Future Past (enough already with the franchise!)
  • The Other Woman (not very funny…not really funny at all)
  • Frozen (somehow the hype made it less interesting for me but gotta love ‘Let It Go!)
  • Sex Tape (watched it halfway before the brat woke up but didn’t find it engaging enough to come back and watch it till the end)
  • Annabelle (boring!)

I still have atleast another 10-12 more to go and we’re round it off by watching Paddington today at the theater (first movie out in 2015…yay!).

Be as all this may, I think 2014 is one of those years where they have made extremely diverse movies and some truly excellent ones at that. Hollywood doesn’t let the grass grow under its feet but the amazing range of 2014 has been one its best so far.

Do you agree?

Happy Viewing all 🙂

Hello 2014!

2013 ended well enough. We had friends over and danced to the kind of funky, remixed Bollywood fare that is a staple at all New Year parties here…

The kids (mine and a friend’s) were entranced by the strobe lights and the smoke machine on the dance floor and couldn’t help themselves from trying to catch the rays, inhale the smoke or even put their hands on the speakers to feel the vibrations under their little hands.

And because motherhood trumps all plans, best laid and otherwise, MLM decided an hour before midnight that he’s had enough of his mother and her tottering around on heels on the dance floor and calmly took himself away from the scene to go to bed!

So off we went…did the bedtime routine…got the pjs on, sang the alphabet song and went off to sleep.

He did…I stayed up reading an Agatha Christie novel I hadn’t touched in years and waited for Red to come home and wish me 🙂

At 12 I touched base with BBF#2, my folks and just called it a night. Woke up this morning with a call from BFF#1 and got the download of how she and her husband brought in 2014.

A rather fun night all things considered…it’s also the first of many celebrations in the new place with friends, family, frisky kids and it all leads up to one thing..the ONE thing I need to launch this year on the right note…my first cup of coffee.

Happy 2014 everyone…make it memorable!

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I Know Tedaktal

Doesn’t make any sense at all? Well this is such a spelling that even a spell check might not help. So lemme reveal the actual word behind the mangled one- Pterodactyl. Whoo! that’s a doozy isn’t it? Given that it’s not even spelt the way it’s pronounced.

Anyhoo MLM’s learning about dinosaurs at school and is QUITE pleased about the whole thing. We watched Ice Age: The Dawn of the Dinosaurs with more enthusiasm and understanding than ever before and he pointed out a Tedaktal to me. Only because they were showing a scene where a pterodactyl was flying about that I was able to follow him.

But I also had the most informative discussion with him on the way back from school. It started out like this:

Me: What did you do today? Had fun?

MLM: Yes. I saw a Tegosaurus.

Me: You DID? WHERE?

MLM: Skoool!!

Me: What did it do?

Me: It eat plaaants.

Me: Ok…what other kinds of dinosaurs does your school have?

MLM: Taiserotops!

Me: A Triceratops?

MLM: YES! Taiserotops.

Me: What does it do?

MLM: Eat plaants!

Me: What else?

MLM: Me T-Rex.

Me: Really?

MLM: Yes… T-Rex eat ice cream, chocolate…(fades into mumbles since mouth is busy chewing).

Me: Shall we go home and watch the dinosaur CD?

MLM: YESSSSS!

Me: Oh crap…what have I done?

MLM: let’s go home, let’s go home, let’s go home ( into infinity)