Love finds it’s way

Jon and I worked in the same department. Although we worked from different offices/cities, there was always an email here or a call there that kept us connected.

Jon, although at 48, had the energy and enthusiasm of someone much younger. He spoke very casually, whatever the seriousness of the project . Always jovial and cheer-filled, he brought out the smiles and more often the laughs, even when least expected.

He did extremely well at work – took up more responsibilities, learnt new skills easily and passed it on very well too.It came as no surprise to see him on the promotion list announced recently.

He was married to his sweetheart for 11 years. They loved each other, very much so. Although no kids, they did have dogs that were not anything lesser than their own kids.

Jon was one of the fittest people around. He went running every day, twice. He did it with passion, not as a chore.

On that January afternoon, when he took off for his mid-day run on the trail behind the office, nobody thought he would never return.

The reasons are yet to be confirmed, but he collapsed and breathed his last on that trail.

The people who waited for him at the scheduled meeting room, his manager who spoke to him right before his run, his colleagues who laughed at his jokes only minutes ago, his dear wife…Nobody saw this coming.

To say it was a shocker, is an understatement.

I was away on vacation and flying back into town when I read the news on an email.

I gasped loud, unaware of my surroundings and then held back my tears. Took me two full days to digest the fact. ” But..I just met him recently. We had a team dinner together. He was so full of life, so fit, so happy… No way he is dead, No way! “…..“His Wife. He loved her so much. What will she do?”.

It is then that I realized I have one special memory of him- the way he said he loved his wife, out loud. With utmost sincerity. I shared it with few of my close colleagues who knew Jon, and that was all there was to it.

The shock of his demise slowly moved on to become acceptance and I got back into the regular grind of workplace. Until yesterday.

Tracy, a friend from another department brought up Jon in a conversation. I told her about how fondly I remember him and narrated that one little memory of him that stood out. She was immensely touched by the incident and asked -” Have you conveyed this memory to Jon’s wife yet?”

I hadn’t. It did not even occur to me.

“You definitely should share it with his wife. She deserves to know, right?”

I agreed.  Sat down and finally wrote the email below to the one person who was in touch with Jon’s wife:


I realized I have something to share. If you are in touch with Jon’s wife, please forward to her. I realize this needs to be told.

We all sat at the dinner table back in October during your team visit to our office. We were having a great time talking , drinking, laughing and generally knowing each other some more. Jon sat right next to me on the table, to my left. Except for occasional meetings, phone calls and emails, I had not known him too well until that evening, when he proved to be the ‘life of the party’.

All smiles with a LOT to make us rip into uncontrolled laughter.

At one point though, the topic steered towards family – kids and spouses. That’s when he said something that I shall ALWAYS associate him with. The one thing that I doubt I will ever see in the eyes/voice of any other man out in public.

He said “ My wife. Oh, I love her. I love my wife. I love her so much”

The pure honesty and sincerity in those words made everyone nearby go silent for a few seconds. It was me who wanted to lighten up the moment and interrupted. The conversation drifted from there.

I have not seen anyone tell out their love for their spouse out in the public to random people , the way he did. It left a mark in me. I even went home to tell that to my husband, told him how rare it is in this world. Shows how special their bond must be.

The moment I read about Jon and his sudden departure, my first thoughts – “Oh no. His Wife. He loved her so much. What will she do?”. My tears were mostly for her and for the man who spoke those words that evening.

It was indeed special.

Please pass on this memory of mine about him to her, if possible.


That email made its way to the person intended. It reached Jon’s wife today.

I heard back from her a one-liner :

” This is Jon’s Valentines Day gift to me. Thank you ”

It is then I registered the perfection of the timing. His message made it’s way to her on February 14th !

Jon, I realized, had conveyed his Love to his dear wife..through me. On Valentines Day  🙂

This has been by far the most rewarding feeling of love-and-its- reaches for me on this special day.

Happy Valentines Day people.

If you love someone, say it out loud.

Stay blessed.

Posted in My perspective, Need to share this, Uncategorized | 17 Comments

Letter to the one year old

The first letter to the Six year old finally out here, this one is the next letter to the baby boy as promised 🙂


Dear Donut,

I have seen your sister – from being a teeny baby to the big girl she is today. I know how time zooms by as kids grow. And still, I am unable to comprehend at times, that you are not really a baby anymore. I hold you like one..I try. But, you squirm and shuffle and get down to your next interest right away. I hug and cuddle and shower you with kisses. You chuckle and take it for a while, but soon get up to go play hide and seek.I know, I need to let the baby go, but has any mom ever been successful at something like that?!

A little proof here with photos..Sigh!
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Since the time you took your first steps as a 11 month old, there has been literally no looking back! You love to wrap your fingers around mine and walk alongside. Even better than sitting in a stroller! You adore the chasing sessions with your sister – you run with all your might while laughing out loud, then inadvertently trip and fall on something :D. You have taken to climbing with so much enthusiasm : sofa stairs, tables, chairs -anything! Your exploring skills are so notorious- the daycare has invested in new safety gates just for you * eyeroll *

Your love for classical music has stayed and steadily grown. Even in the lousiest of moods, you calm down with some Carnatic songs or Bhajans. You love your English rhymes too, but you do treat classical music with special affection. In spite of being trained in Carnatic vocal ( eons ago),  I hardly gave it serious thought until now. Thanks to you, I am singing again! I sing when I drive with you ..and I absolutely love the undivided attention 🙂

Sleeping has never been your forte.While I make sure you doze off on a earthly time during regular days, I let it slide during weekend parties at times. It may be well past midnight, with only a bunch of us adults awake..and you will be the only baby wide eyed and playing as if it were mid -afternoon! Hoping that you will make up for lost sleep the next morning is futile too. The clock strikes 7 and you are up like a spring next day. How do you do that boy?! Well, on the brighter side – you will be the best person to party with when you grow up. Your friends can thank me later 😉

The big, heart tugging smile of yours has stayed. (God, may that stay forever ). Although it is not toothless anymore ( 6 little teeth have made appearance), you are very generous with the charisma to anyone and everyone who will make eye contact and smile! But, hey, nobody can make the mistake of melting for the baby smile and extending their arms to pick you up. That’s when you turn around, walk away from them at the speed of light and look for me. You shy bunny, please make it easy on me in public gatherings and get more social, will you? That party boy I mentioned above.. That would be a moot point if you don’t mingle, see?

In the last few weeks, you have started parroting us at any chance. Your vocabulary is small, but growing way too fast in the last few weeks. Not just ‘Amma’ and ‘BoBo’  ( dog), you repeat any 2 syllable word that you hear anywhere. ‘Badee’, “Ka”, “Bachee”, “Tee”, “Chee Chee”, “Aachi”, “Maney”, “Tata”, “Baa”, “No”..are some of them I can think of . ( Bird, Car, Bus, Tree, Chee for dirty, Aachi for done, Maney for house, Tata for bye, Baa for come, No for that order)

Pointing the parts of the body is a favorite thing to do. The funniest is when we ask for the nose ( moogu)..that’s when you point to your nose and sneakily ease the index finger right into the nostril. It amuses you to no end when we laugh, doesn’t it?

Your big sister ( Akka) , likes to play rough with you. And you know how to tackle it well. What with all the chasing, hurling, bouncing and toppling over each other- my head spins just watching you two go at it! I do have to play the strict referee most times, but that is for your own safety. Oh, and your dad, the man who passed on his rough playing genes to both of you – he usually adds fuel to the fire and watches the fun from close quarters.

There are very few things you dislike ( washing head being one), but so many things you love !

  • Sitting down on my lap and reading a baby book
  • Watching the flock of birds fly in the sky
  • Chasing the vacuum cleaner nozzle while Appa vacuums the house
  • Pulling Akka’s hair when she least expects
  • Exploring outdoors perched on a little seat in Appa’s big bicycleIMG_0654
  • Slurping water from a spoon and ending each gulp with a ‘ahhh..’
  • Pressing every button on the remote and checking what happens to the TV
  • Calling out ‘Amma..’ non stop with no reason at all and smile when I respond
  • …Oh, the list goes on.

We revel in your cheer and soak in the pleasure of little things like never before 🙂
This might sound crazy, but my heart swells with happiness when I look at you..every-single- time. I hope you have the same effect on me always my baby boo. I hope you keep the cheer on for everyone around you.


Stay Healthy and Stay Happy, Always.

With Love,

Posted in Donut Diary, Uncategorized | 9 Comments

Letter to my Six year old

I have two letters – one for my six year old girl and the other for the one year old boy.

Life has been quite full and moving really fast. Before I gather my thoughts, the hurrying winds of time has scattered them awry.But, these letters have to be put down here. For, one day, I will have time to look back and reminisce. And, that day, I want to find these well gathered words and smile at the memories.

So, here is the first one. Next one, coming up soon , promise! 🙂


Dear Paapu,

You celebrated turning Six recently. That’s a ‘big girl’ number and you sure show it. Standing at the bakery section in a store staring at a gorgeous princess themed cake, I ask excitedly “Would you want this for your Birthday?”. “Buy me a simple one Amma.You know I don’t even eat cake. I just want to have fun with friends on my birthday!”, was the answer. That’s the realistic you. You know what want and take no time to tell it as it is 🙂

Up close I hold your face in my arms, see the baby eyes and kiss it all over. From a distance though, I am amazed at how big you have grown and how soon!

Over the last year, especially after becoming a big sister, you seem to have grown multi-fold. Although I assist you in your daily chores – brush, eat, bath, homework…I am fully aware you can do all those and more without any help from Amma anymore. I think, I still linger around to hold on to my ‘little’ girl some more 🙂


There are so many things you have been learning – dance, martial arts, swimming, gymnastics, skiing. You seem to really enjoy them all. Although there are days when you are whiny and do not want to practice, you don’t wish to stop learning either.Swimming was the favorite one during summer. Come winter, it has been skiing that has topped your list and how! It was fairly challenging task since the nearest ski slope with kids lessons is 4 hours away. But, your Appa drove you every other weekend and you went along waking up in the wee hours, no complaints. Now, I see you show off the badges for going up many levels and skiing down slopes higher than we ever imagined ! In fact, you now ski better than both your parents combined 🙂

“What was the best part of your day today?” is my regular question and almost always has the response “Playing with friends at school!”. Joining Kindergarten in a public school and getting to be in a real school system was a big one last year. You had your little struggles and challenges to face. But, within a few weeks, you settled down and made friends.

With the slightest bit of pushing, you have proven to do pretty well. “Best Reader of the month”, “Young Author of the grade”, “Problem-solver of the month” – Less than 8 months of school and your accolades have made us so very proud ! But,alongside the accolades were complaints too. While some of them were behavioral and silly, others were downright scary. Like that one day when the principal of your school called in to say you walked out of school premises with a classmate during recess hour! Although they found you and got back safely to school, you showed no signs of fear or remorse. “But, I just went down the road to a friends house to get some band aid” was your honest response when I asked. The teachers and us parents spent hours drilling in your brain about the dangers of walking out of school unsupervised.Being fearless has it’s downside too, my darling. Sorry, the world around isn’t as safe as you think.

Drawing and coloring has been always one of your favorite things to do. Once you start, hours can go by before you peek out of your paper. I have framed a few and saved some more. I hope your love for art and beauty never ceases…may it stay as the source of wonderful creations and unperturbed mindfulness.


Freestyle artsy heart ..with love 🙂

Talking about creativity, I need to mention about your “Bambochikaas”. [ Oh, for you uninitiated people, Bambochikaas are a group of special creatures who live in a far far away land. They are very brave people and do not cry at all. They live a 1000 years and their kids don’t even go to school until they are a 100 ! They do no sleep, but only ‘rest’ on floating clouds!] You know all about them Bambochikaas and bring out pieces of information every now and then, updating facts like it happened right before your eyes. Trust me, I love your bits so much that am writing it all down after you update me 😀

Baltu and Tigy are the doll friends who accompany you to bed at night. One of them is picked every night and held on tight through the sleep. Although left behind in bed when you wake up, they often make it into your dream stories 🙂

Your little brother is a hands full and you know it too well. Even when busy with your tasks, you always seem to have a cautious eye on him at all times! Although you can be rough and boisterous at times, you cry when he cries.You move him away from danger, hold his hand when he is wobbly or simply chase him around when he wants to play.A reliable baby sitter already, I can see you growing to be his guide, mentor and a super solid big sister to look up to.

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“What do you want to be when you grow up?”- As a 2 year old, you really wanted to be a bunny rabbit, nothing else 😉 But that changed when you were about 4. “I want to be a doctor.. an awesome doctor!” was your answer consistently. That changed again about an year ago with “I want to be a doctor …AND a hair stylist”. Your love for braiding hair, styling with clips and bands has just been growing. You are ready to style anyone if they oblige – the baby brother, a younger cousin or an elderly aunt ! The results, I must say, are quite pleasing too. If we question about your dual goals, there’s a quick response -” I will be an awesome doctor during the day …and by evening I will be a cool hair stylist. Simple!”.

Whatever you grow up to be, my sweet pea, just keep the same enthusiasm, the same resolve and best efforts to excel.


Stay Healthy and Stay Happy, Always.

With Love,

Posted in Paapu Tales, Uncategorized | 7 Comments

The First Best Day

It has been a couple of weeks since the calendar new year set in. Although 2016 has been nothing but nice so far, I received the first best of it recently.

Nothing too great or pompous. However, it was a day filled with calm and content. That coveted feeling of being at ease with life …and sincerely happy.

Wrote down this post moments before I went to bed so I don’t forget 🙂


Friday, Jan 15 – Pongal/Sankranti

Working from home.The hubby working from home too.

Had breakfast, got kids ready and dropped off at school/daycare.

Work related tasks completed quickly. Went easier than I thought.

Phone messages , got invited to 2 different parties over the weekend – both group of friends are mutually exclusive, but very close and fun loving. Super excited about the weekend!

Took a break from work . Got hubby to take a break too and got into bed for some cuddling.

Chatted for a while, laughing and joking about the silliest of things. Was followed by slow steamy foreplay…..then a great ending 🙂

Some more relaxed talk and bonding, followed by a quickie!

Got out of bed, took a long shower. Heart felt light, mind at peace.

Went out for a lunch date – good food. Sumptuous pongal lunch special!

Came back home. Logged into work again and completed remaining work tasks.

Signed off on the laptop and took up some cleaning and organizing wardrobes . Tasks were pending for long.

Got done in an hour and felt proud about the job done.

Picked up kids from school/daycare.

Paapu is a very cheerful mood. While giving her a bath, she showed some new clap songs learnt recently. We did them together and laughed so hard! Felt blessed for that moment together 🙂

Donut was his happy self. Played and tickeled and made him giggle loud. (Note to self: Need to record that sound of happiness)

Heart and mind at ease. Feeling calm and unperturbed.

All 4 got ready and set out to temple as planned.

Had a light prasad dinner at the temple.Met a few good acquaintances and exchanged good wishes.

Returned home and put the kids to sleep.No fuss.

Typing this post sitting on the couch wearing an old sweater. It’s cozy and comforting.

Dark and drizzling outside. Silent and warm inside. Just the clock ticking and the fingers typing away on the keyboard.

It has been the best of days in the new year so far. Hoping to experience this state of mind and heart many many times over.

Good Night now. Stay blessed.


Posted in Have a sneak peek into my love life, Need to share this | 4 Comments


Sitting on the bed with a pillow supporting my back. I have my legs bent at the knees and your little butt propped on my tummy with chubby legs dangling either sides. Tiny fingers wrapped around mine tightly..while the lips break into a toothless smile rising up into those big beady eyes….like moonshine.

I sing and sway..I hold the stare.I grab you in a gentle embrace and inhale deep..the baby soft smell..of pure joy..of pure bliss.

A sudden gush of emotions and I cannot breathe anymore. The heart has swelled up to its limit and I am not sure whether to smile or sob! I let it overwhelm me. I let it pain me a little.

Then, I kiss you. On the forehead. one on each cheek and then the round tip of the nose. You giggle. I laugh back.

That moment, right there on a very normal can it be so beautiful! So priceless! My dear baby boo – You have gifted me moments like these in abundance. The photos and videos are vain efforts of capturing everything about you. But, I know, there is no way to capture the delight you bring into our hearts..there is no way to record what a pleasure you are to our very being.

You were hardly 4 months old on your first plane ride and road trip. We stopped every few hours to freshen up and feed you. There were few instances of crying and worry too. But I do not remember being boggled down by an infant travelling along. Why are people so afraid to travel with babies, I thought. You watched us talk, you forced us to sing, you slept most of the way. All the hikes in the canyons, the strolls in the cities, the walks in little towns – everything was new to you. You couldn’t stop looking and taking it all in. Also, you gave generously…your smiles. Random strangers lavished away…the sweetness.


At Antelope Canyon- Natural sandstone sculptures


Utah – Hiked up the ‘Delicate Arch’ with baby (not in pic)


Cafe at a little town. Meaning of life and happiness..all in that name, don’t you think? 🙂

At 6 months, you traveled across the oceans to an island vacation! More than 30 of family and friends along, there was always someone with open arms to play and cuddle you. You did not exactly jump for joy with your first touch of turquoise blue ocean. But, you warmed up to it very soon.The tropical breeze, sandy beaches and colorful surroundings appeased you to no end. It seemed like you belonged there, always 🙂

Bahamas Island – Lounging on a table..right next to the blue waters


Hammock on the beach..snoozing away carelessly. What else does one need? 🙂

 Last week you turned 7 months old and off we packed you along on a camping trip. Pitched a tent in the middle of the redwoods and slept in air beds. The days were balmy bright  and the nights were foggy cold. Yet, you took it well. Cozied up in fleece blankets, you slept better than you sleep at home! Have never seen you enjoying anything as much as waking up inside a tent.It was ridiculously amazing through your curious eyes. During the day, you touched the leaves, grabbed the twigs and even hiked up a trail in the sling without a fuss.You made a very happy camper, literally 🙂

Camping – Good morning Kiss!

There are so many things about you that I wish to remember and smile back. Here are a few:

You took your time turning over. It happened past 5 months. But, since then, it has been your favorite position. Perched on your tummy and lifting the head high, you move around in circles grabbing things in the vicinity. You haven’t moved forward yet, but I see that coming any time soon.

To attract attention, or to communicate your boredom, you squeal. It is so loud and high pitched, it makes us wince sometimes. But, mostly, it makes us laugh at your vigor.

I call you ‘curious kitten’ for a reason. Perched on my hip, you looked at all things with such big curious eyes initially. Now, it is coupled with your arms stretching out to touch! It may be a glass of water I am drinking , a plate of hot dosa I am holding or simply the dress in the hanger at the shop am browsing. You grab, and then shove it into the mouth 😛 Needless to say, your curiosity has lead to some unhappy situations. Meanwhile, Amma has learnt to be much more cautious while walking around with you.


Foot, yummy! 🙂

Your elder sis ( Akka) is one person who you look up to. Literally. The admiration in your eyes for whatever she so obvious! She sings and dances for you, she hugs and tickles you. But, she also shouts in your ears, holds you precariously, pinches your nose and jiggles you up. Yet, you bear it all and  smile at her, no complaints! Thank her for your resilience when you grow up, will ya? 😉

All the four grandparents have passed on a little of them to you. You have the love for music from your Ajja and Ajji . They sang so many songs and bhajans for you when here that it is the only thing that will calm you down at times. Your Thatha takes you out on morning strolls everyday and you love the sunshine with him. Paati introduced you to solid foods- you love her home cooked raagi cereal, rice and dal, peas and carrots, even avocado and slices of watermelon recently!

Keep growing healthy and happy just this way. Be the pleasant little moonshine in our lives my baby boo.

We will love you with all our might and more!


Posted in Dance and such, Donut Diary, Paint, Things I love to do - Travel | 13 Comments

He is here!

The new year has been ushered in. Year 2014 is the thing of the past. But, I am still reeling in the joys that 2014 has been. It was the year where several of our dreams came true – a new house to call our own, the baby news, my mom visiting from India !

The best of the reasons why 2014 will always be dear to me, however, is the gift that arrived at the very end of the year.

Yes, He is here ! 🙂
IMG_4617 2

‘Donut’ made his entry on the day of Christmas eve – Dec 24…when the world was in the best of spirits, celebrations and happiness all around 🙂

We are a family of four now!

It has been about 3 weeks now and things still feel surreal.In the haze of constant feeding, diaper changes, sleepless nights, and recovery, we are gloating over every sleepy smile of the newborn.

The story of the birth needs to be recorded and I shall put it up shortly. Glad to say, it was as less eventful as can be.

The big sister was initially taken aback by the baby out of Amma’s tummy! But, once warmed up, she has been unable to stay away from her tiny pink blob of a brother. Constantly hugging and showering him with kisses, she shows him off to anyone who cares to look.

I realize she misses her parents complete attention at times, but tries her best to accommodate and keep a smiling face. Makes me proud to watch her act with such understanding and maturity at this tender age.

Sounds so cliched, but just when you thought your heart was full with this all consuming love,  it makes space for more! It brims over and rolls down as tears when you hold the 4 year old with the 4 day old close to the chest while the husband stands close and watches on.

FourHands copy

Hoping 2015 carries forward these wonderful moments.

To all of you lovely people out there – May the new year bring you the joys of adventure, high of success and warmth of love ..all through and through.

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Posted in Donut Diary, Need to share this | 13 Comments

Dear Donut

Dear Donut,

At 36 weeks, you are not just a baby growing inside, you are already part of this family 🙂

You know what else you are? Here is a list:

You are Strong. There are no kicks and flutters anymore. There are pronounced nudges, stretching and squirming from you now. At times, they are so strong, I literally have to stop doing what am doing and wait for you to calm down 🙂

You are Cared for. The Big sister loves and cares for you to extents you won’t believe ! (Remember this when she might be bossing you around as a teenager 😀 ) She reminds me that I should not lift/carry her, insists I don’t run while playing with her , asks Appa not to drive the car too fast when I am around – all because she wants you to feel safe inside. “I don’t want Donut to feel squished inside Amma!” she says. Every single day, she never forgets to stop, kiss and bid you a very sweet ‘Bye Donut, have a good day’ before leaving to school.

You are Loved. At night , before going to sleep, your dad and big sister sing to you sitting on the bed with me.. They sing softly one by one and sometimes in chorus. They compete who can get more closer to your ears ( near my tummy) and smile along as they do so. You seem to listen- silent for the words and a little nudge when it ends 🙂

– You are Funny. Your tiny toes move around pretty obviously when I am lying on my side sleeping at night. They wake me up with a tickle most times 🙂 Now that your movements are so pronounced,the big sister watches you move sometimes and giggles hard – imagining your antics inside ! Also, the hiccups. You get vigorous hiccups at times and although it is very common, I only started noticing it in the last few weeks. Oh man, those hiccups make my tummy literally throb to the beats of hic-hic-hic. Silly baby 😀

You are Sensible. You remain the perfect little one inside during my bad days.It is as if you feel my emotions from within , know when Amma is angry/sad and keep calm. It is the thought of you that brings me back my cool too. Thank you !

You are Celebrated. While we get your bassinet, clothes, closet and other necessities ready, your grand parents are preparing for you in much grand ways. Their flight tickets are booked to visit you. They have shopped the heck out of baby stores to pamper you upon arrival 🙂

You are Dreamed of and Prayed for. I pray for your well being every day , asking God to bestow you with all the health and happiness. I dream that you are smart, cheerful and kind. I imagine you to have loving eyes and a warm personality. I hope for you to be emotionally strong and content. We, as parents will strive to provide you the resources for that, as best as we can.

You are much Awaited. This feeling of you inside my belly is very comforting. Yes, the extra weight, the tiredness and fatigue, the hurting back – all if it sucks. But, am ready to ignore all that to cherish this little you growing in there. It is a feeling of immense love and gratitude I feel for your existence. You know, your little family cannot wait to meet you in person, my dear! You are much awaited.

Stay safe in there now and when you come out to this beautiful world in few more weeks, come happy and healthy. Come, complete this family.
We love you.


Posted in Donut Diary, Need to share this, Paapu Tales | 5 Comments