Thursday, October 8, 2015

5 yr old truant!

Cheeky is growing.. He is now 11 years old! 11 years old and head spinning busy. The kid loves every sport there is, is good at academics but treats that as his last priority. So ofcourse he is the tiger mom's nightmare. He wants to become a UFC fighter and trains for it like he means business! Not for the faint hearted let me tell you that!

So for this birthday I decided my busy kid needs a little break. So we were going to play truant and take a mom and son day. Cheeky loved the idea convinced dad it would be a mom, dad and son day just no sister! Well it is his birthday, so we agreed and all was set. Till the bday dawned. The little monster caught a whiff of the plan.

Day of, she woke up and could barely speak. Looked tired and with a nasal tone said "Mom I am so sick". We knew what was going on here, but she is 5 yrs old. So we gave her some credit, gave her a doze of cold medication (she did have a cold) and tucked her back into bed. After I was overheard calling the school to tell them she was out sick we heard the little rascal bounding down the corridor. "So guys lets go get the cake" she squealed!

The day was a whirlwind of fun.. now armed with both kids we went to the park, ate out, hit the bounce house, had an icecream cake and finished the day off with a movie! Never again is Tootsie going to let us plan a Mom and Son day! I did get a confession from her "I did not want to miss out on the fun activities" she says swinging upside down from the play structure!

What are we going to do when this kid turns 15.. she claims she doesnt understand what the word "fib" means but we dont believe a word of what comes out of that innocent face!

Monday, August 17, 2015

Kindergarten Diaries

"Mommy we dont shower in Kindergarten" was the first update I ever got about Tootsie's Kindergarten life. You would wonder why my kid thought that was an important bit of information to divulge to parents? Well.. We got a long voluntary supply list for Kindergarten. Every year for Cheeky that meant going to the store and buying a ton of stuff. But it was always a long drawn exercise, looking at folder colors, arguing about what characters needed to be on said folders.

This year everything was ordered online and packed and put away without much room for arguments. But there was one thing Tootsie was allowed to pick. A bath towel for Kindergarten! She was very surprised and amused at this request. Hence the important update. The bath towel is for rest time after lunch. After all the work that these munchkins do, they need to rest and watch tv at school!

A lot of my friends have been asking me "How was kindergarten? How is she holding up?". My response has been "Perhaps you should ask the teacher this?". Because so far it looks like Kindergarten has been the hardest on the teacher! Tootsie settled down in Kindergarten a few seconds after entering the classroom. Since then she has kept the teacher busy.

I decided to pick her up on her first week of school. And Tootsie thinks its completely unnecessary for me to indulge in all this drama! She has actually rolled her eyes at me and asked me when Ms. G will be picking her up. She will be going to after school care with Ms. G and Tootsie adores her! I must add, Tootsie has also offered to just walk home by herself in the mean time. Whats with my children??

On the second day of school, Tootsie came up to me and said "We need to bring the folder and school supplies!" I was shocked. Just the previous day I had turned in 2 large bags packed with school supplies. In fact I had turned in more than what was requested as in a number of cases I got big economy packs! And now they needed more? I decided to ask the teacher. She says "You know I think she wants to take the school supplies home."
Me "What? Why?"
Ms. D "I tried to explain that school supplies stay at school. After listening, she asks 'but can I take my folder home?' Could you please explain to her that they stay in the classroom?"
Me "Hmm. Tootsie what do you want to take home?"
Tootsie walks me to her cubby, shows me a pink folder thats in there and says "When can I take that home?"
Me "It stays at school, you will use it here"
"But mom its mine. I want to take it home!"
Sigh.. this kindergarten thing is challenging!

Next Tootsie walks over to her teacher "When are you giving us IPads?" she asks
Ms. D "Can you explain to her that we dont have funding for IPads"
Me "I think she is asking that because of the headphones she brought in. Besides they had IPads at her private pre-school!!!!"
Ms. D "Oh maybe we will get Chrome books later in the year"

After that I decided Ms. D definitely needed to call it a day and took Tootsie home. Earlier that week, Tootsie had asked me when she could have her own phone (like brother) "so I can use headphones". After some more convincing, I thought we had put the tale of school supplies and IPads to rest.

Next morning as we walked to school Tootsie asks "Mom do you think they will give us laptops today? I am going to ask Ms. D"


Poor Ms. D. Being a kindergarten teacher can sure be demanding. And to think she has 20 other kids asking her all kinds of questions! I can certainly empathise with her!

About Tootsie.. I can tell this kid will survive Kindergarten well! If her teachers will, remains to be seen! Back to work mom, no more excuses!!

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

The making of the babies! And kids moving on!

"Cheeky, did you go to God and ask for a Baby sister?" came the question
"Hmm.. No actually I asked for a Baby brother" says Cheeky
I prepare myself for some drama.. but no little drama queens have grown up and are thinking about matters too deep to worry about little set backs.
"Mommy can you go to the temple where Cheeky prayed for me?" she says
"What temple?"
"The temple where you go to get baby brothers and sisters?"
"Huh" says the dumb mom!
"I would like to pray for a baby sister"
"When I turn 10, the baby will turn 4 just like Cheeky's baby sister". She even got the timing right! But how?????

"But Tootsie that will mean I need to have another baby. I dont think I am ready to have another baby"
"You just have to Mommy, how else will I get a baby sister?"
"Tootsie finish up your icecream" and like that catastrophe has been averted! For now!

In other news today was first day of school! For my Kindergartner and Middle Schooler. And I am just a lost clueless mom! I decided to work from home today to be there for drop off and pick up. A luxury my kids dont get through the year. The middle schooler has some confusion with Schedule, has no idea where his classroom is, but needs no help from the parent! The kindergartner is apparently a veteran at this. Walks in to her classroom, puts away all her stuff and finds her seat. Kindergarten is apparently very complicated. The backpack, lunch box and snack each go in different colored baskets and cubbies. And then you go find your name and sit down. But Tootsie did this like she has been doing this every day! All parents were inside the classroom helping their kids and ceremoniously cutting the chord. I thought maybe I should pretend to be a caring parent and walked in at this point. My little pixie actually looked confused about what my role there was. She gave me a fist pump, rolled her little eyes and said "Bye Mom!". She then stretched her hands, yawned and rested on her desk watching all the kids and their parents walking around the classroom. I had no choice but to leave. Might as well have taken the day off and gone vacationing. For all my planning, drop off lasted less than 5 minutes!

Pick up was yet another story. Tootsie looks at me surprised "What are you doing here?"
"hey I am still your mom! You still stay at my house!"
"Mommy! I was going to walk home by myself!"
She then refuses to hold my hand, takes off a strap of the backpack off her shoulder.
"I know this is how Cheeky does it. I can do this" she says!

Before I know it, this girl is going to be moving out! Atleast I will have Cheeky! So about that, because there was a lot of confusion about his schedule I decided to pick him up from school. I stood with 2 other uncool mom's just inside school but far away from the classroom. "Uncool! Uncool!" ringing in my head! Cheeky looks up from his phone (proud to say he is texting me! Still not that old!), and says "Seriously?!"

"Cheeky since I did not drop you off, I thought it might be nice to pick you up. Not cool?" I asked
"Mom. Its not cool to even be on the same street as your kid's school!" He says!

I need to be hash tagging! #EmptyNesterComingSoon

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

College? But Why? I am ready now!

Tootsie the Pixie has a personality that keeps life interesting for all of us. She is 5 now, ready to start kindergarten. Her spark of personality is so unique true to her name. We are often stumped by her brand of reasoning.

Many years ago a wise lady advised me on dreaming big. She said its important for us to encourage our kids to dream big and set them on the right path. She had convinced her kids they should be doctors and if you asked them thats what they would say. But not mine. I have tried this many times with Cheeky. He went from wanting to be a fire fighter to a truck driver to a wrestler and UFC Fighter. Yes my son wants to be a fighter in cage fighting!!!!! No amount of encouragement to pursue a less bloody career works! If you ask him what you want to be when you grow up.. there are only 2 answers you would get. "A billionaire" is usually the first one! How will you get there? "UFC Champion" is the next. I have never failed to remind him ... UFC Champions are not billionaire's. Warren Buffet is a billionaire!

Now Tootsie is a different story all together. She is this complacent little munchkin! She still cant read, doesnt care enough to try. She can be found often times in her own world humming a tune, dancing a step or better still talking to herself! She is my little dreamer! So I thought maybe this time I will be lucky! So I started on a mission... after being lectured multiple times "You can be whatever you want to be, mom" it looked like my luck would turn!

And I had Doc Mc. Stuffins to thank! So Tootsie decided she wanted to be a doctor! I was so thrilled that finally here was a kid who would do me proud when asked "What do you want to be when you grow up?" After years of answering "A princess" she had taken to saying a "Doctor Princess". But Tootsie is a deep thinker. She came to me one day and said, "But mom.. I dont know what Doctors do".

Me distractedly "They take care of people"
Tootsie still the little troubled frown on her face "But I dont know how to"
Me "Thats what college's are for. They will teach you there"
After lengthy discussions about colleges and learning to be a professional, you would have thought I put her mind to ease? Oh no... I changed her mind!! Now ask her what she wants to be "A teacher" she says

"Why Tootsie?"
"Because I already know how to be one!"

Talk about Ms. Lazy Bones! We tried our hand at convincing her otherwise, and asked her "What do teachers do?"

Tootsie "They ask kids to line up, go to the playground, wash up, line up again go eat"

So Cheeky says "What if the kids dont listen to you?"

That apparently got the little Missy thinking. Recently she was heard telling someone "I am going to be a teacher of older kids. Because they listen"

We are not going to read in Kindergarten and we definitely are not planning on college! I will just not tell her that teachers need to go to college too. If not we will be back to "Princess"! I must be a great mom at inspiring my kids! I better shut up and let nature take it course!!!

Thursday, January 22, 2015

How will you be named?

Apparently my kids think its normal to name themselves. For those of you who have heard my tales you are probably familiar with the tale of Cheeky naming himself Ronak. If you aren't and wish to get acquainted, do read the link at the bottom. It seems to be a never ending battle with not 1 but both my kids. They think its quite normal to rename themselves. And I have to run nick names by them too.

The Cheeky Tale:
We are a Tamil family with too many last names. Traditionally we take the first name of our dad as the last name. As you can imagine that can get quite confusing. After marriage, the girl takes the husband's first name as the last name. I ofcourse chose not to. So now we are stuck with 3 last names. In a stroke of genius we decided it would make our lives so much easier and conversations with doctor offices so much shorter if we all had the same last name. So we picked a family name and decided to retain our current last name as a middle name. So no one loses right? Except my kids wanted to have a say in it. After arguing with us for hours, Cheeky came up to us and said. Hey I know.. when you change my name can I be Peter James? That ended the name change discussion in our house, forever!

The Tootsie Tale:
Tootsie is 4 now and we have run through all possible nick names I can give her. But she just hates them all. I love to call my kids by nick names, pet names that only mommy uses and a pen name that I use on my blog. So even before Tootsie was born we had a name picked for her and a pen name as well. But no nick name. Since their names are very close, I wanted to come up with something Unique that's only Tootsie. But my 1 and 2 yr old gave me opinions about Nick name. She is 4 now and I have settled on a cute little nick name for her Nu-nu... and she corrects me "Thats a baby name, not my name". So this summer for a dress up day I got her a pink dress, fairy wings and a beautiful tiara and wand. Told her she was Princess Nu-Nu. Since then she is a little bit more accepting of the name, but only occasionally. Well she will be till she knows the real story. I forgot about dress up day at school and walked in to a room full of princesses and super heroes! True "One Fine Day" moment... but I apologized to her and walked out. As I sat at a meeting that morning, the scene from One fine day flashed in my head. So I canceled my next meeting, rushed to Target and picked whatever I could find! They don't sell costumes in July, so I had to get creative. And it kind of helped! But not quite. My 4 yr old insists I use her full name to call her every time! Who does that? Do you?

[The Cheeky Tale:]

Friday, January 16, 2015

My Real Family!!

Whats with my kids and cheeky talk? Tootsie is turning out to be a talker. And the things that leave her mouth. We have had numerous conversations about fictitious lunches, her teachers talking Tamil after I leave and more recently Santa's discussions with her.

However the conversation we had this week took the cake! I was driving home with the kids a couple nights ago. Cheeky and I were talking about hair styles and bangs. Cheeky was telling me why bangs were not a good idea and how he was glad Tootsie grew hers out. While confused little Tootsie kept chiming in from the back "And you know I looked like Dracula with my bangs"... 4 yrs old and we get f and b confused! But we are not fazed by the fact that we had fangs!!

Finally we revealed to her that bangs had to do with hair and not teeth. So then she says "Yeah my real family really liked bangs so they gave me some". That stopped our conversation in its tracks.
"Real Family?" I asked
"Yes my real family who had me till I was 2 years old" Tootsie says with a straight face
We were still very confused, so Cheeky asks her "Who is your real family?"
"You know my English Mom, English Dad and English Brother".
Cheeky and I were speechless, we exchanged puzzled looks. Tootsie took this opportunity to educate us
"And now because I live with my Indian family I am learning Tamil" and she went on to say "Amma thanni kudu" (Mom give me some water) very calmly like this was all very normal.

So then we asked her "If your English family gave you to us, do we need to give you back to them?". She says "yeah, I will need to go back."

By then I had figured out why we were having this conversation, so I asked "Are you saying this because we talk Tamil and you don't?"

"Yes my English family only knew English, but my Indian family knows Tamil so I am learning" She says with an exaggerated sigh!

Will teach M to try teach her Tamil.. M is guilty of trying to get her to talk with her grand mom in Tamil this past weekend.

So this went on for 2 days when she described her family. Asked for names she said "I was too little, I didn't know the name of my mom, I just called her "Mom"". We of course narrated this preposterous story to my sister and she quizzed her about the English family as well.

Last night my sister in law sent us pictures of Kanu Pidi, a south Indian tradition that we do for Pongal (Harvest Festival). I was carrying Tootise and Cheeky stood next to me as I showed them the video and pictures. So the kids asked what that was about. So I said "They are praying to God that like a flock of crows, the family should stay together forever". Cheeky then told Tootsie "Oh but we dont need to pray for you, your English family will do that"

Tootsie hugged me and said "But mommy I want to stay with you forever. I am not going to go back to my English family"
Finally last night I guess Cheeky wore her down, she came to me and said
"You know I was with my English family before I came to your tummy" and later "Mommy I was just pretending about the English family"

What clued me in. Earlier that day I was working from home and on a conference call. Tootsie came up to me making gestures and mouthing something to me. M watching this asked her what she wanted and what she was trying to do. So Tootsie clarifies "When Mommy is talking to English people, she doesn't like them to hear me. So I was whispering!". And of course the fact that she frets over not being able to talk in Tamil. She keeps repeating the 4 words she knows in Tamil telling us "I am talking in Tamil now"

But well in all these that's the first time she has accepted her pretense. I am amazed at how well this kid can fabricate tales and stick with it all keeping a straight face. Like Cheeky says "Maybe we have a future writer?" Or I think Conman?

The Elf on the Shelf! Me Too!!

So after years of avoiding the marketing gimmick of "Elf on the Shelf" I finally succumbed to the pressure and popular demand. I ...