Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas 

May the joys of the season be yours for the Holidays and throughout the New Year. 
 I hope that everyone is safe, healthy and happy.

Friday, December 21, 2012

One Week Later

Moments of Silence, church bells, and thousands of sympathy cards filling up the post offices are just a few things that people are able to do for the folks in Newtown, Connecticut.  How do we make them feel better?They lost a part of themselves. We can only try. President Obama is trying his best to make sure that something like this does not happen again. No one can make sure but the possibilities can be greatly reduced.  Also it is not just up to him. We all have to be understanding and compromising.  The lives of our kids and grand kids can depend on how we think as adults. 
People all around the world are affected by this tragedy.  Here in the tri-state area there are friends of friends of people who lost their loved ones and who actually died. We can send sympathy cards for people who lost their loved ones, but there are people whose children saw other children die, there are people who work a couple of hours away and had to drive in agony to the school and now are left with post traumatic stress disorder. They will be needing counseling or will be leaving their jobs even. This shooting has set off a chain reaction of painful thoughts. 
I had almost lost hope in humanity. However, within the last week, I heard a lot of good things about a lot of people who are helping people heal.  UConn has started a scholarship for the kids of Sandy Hook elementary school. People can send their donations to help the siblings of the children who lost their lives. So I see a glimmer of hope here. 
I have learned a lot in my life and from people who blog. I have learned to be strong. The lady who writes"Step Parent's Cove" made me realize that no matter how many people try to hurt us, we can be strong and hang on to our Faith in goodness and there will be glimmer of hope.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Broken Hearts

How do you blog about a day like today ? I mean even the President was emotional. Who wouldn't be? I don't mean to sound callous about other shootings in the US or other countries, but these are elementary school kids. How did something like this happen? Why would anyone do something like this ? I cannot even imagine the state of mind of the parents whose kids were shot. What are parents to do? Fairfield County Connecticut is supposed to be one of the safest places in the tri-state area  So if a place and a school like this is not safe for our kids and grand kids then where are we suppose to raise our kids? I am sure this is a question a lot of young parents must be asking themselves. I remember in 1979 when our oldest was about to get into Kindergarten people suggested that we get a house in the Hudson Valley because it was drug free and the schools are good.  It turned out to be true. We were lucky I guess. We had the peace of mind until 1999 when we heard about Columbine shooting. That shook us all. We still remember praying for the victims parents and  hoping that it would be an isolated case. Today I am thinking are we going to get a break from tragedies this year?

For people who live in the Hudson Valley, Danbury, Connecticut is no less than our hometown. We go there to shop to save sales tax and a lot of us sent our kids UConn. Connecticut is a state where people understand the meaning of life. Get education, work hard and honestly love your family. In 2010 when there was a shooting in the brewery, people attributed that to bad economy and employee outrage. Today  a lot of us are trying to understand the motive behind this killing of little kids. Someone pointed out that the suspect who killed his mother wanted to kill what his mother loved most. His mother loved teaching so he killed little kids. Will people think twice before they enroll their kids in school? Is the suspect going to get his wish? I know that he is not alive but I certainly hope that he did not kill our spirits to educate our kids.

Friday, November 23, 2012

A lot be thankful for

Happy Thanksgiving everyone. I am a little late, but I was exhausted last evening. It is my own fault for putting my hobbies last. By the time everyone had eaten and the kitchen was cleaned up I was left with no energy. This is something we diabetics have to deal with. Sudden tiredness. I cannot complain though because I get sudden bursts of energy as well and I get a lot done. I am hoping that all my blogger friends are taking care of their health in these busy holiday times.

Hurricane Sandy brought a lot of devastation in New York. I saw my first gas station argument on Wednesday. It was a little frightening. I was afraid that this Thanksgiving there will be a lot of bitterness. However last night I saw in the news that a lot of people were showing friendship and generosity by making an extra meal for someone who lost everything in their home but were still spending Thanksgiving in their own home. Someone had organised a plan to find people who would cook a free Thanksgiving meal and then gave them addresses of people who were not able to cook in their own homes. This way people got a surprise visitor who brought a whole meal with them (tablecloth, plates, napkins and plastic ware and all).  There were a lot of people connecting with people and strangers showing strangers that they were not alone in this disaster. what more can we ask for. I think that God is Great  and still there is hope for humanity. That is plenty to be thankful for.

I am Thankful for good health of my family, my friends, my blogger friends my neighbors and people that I work with. I hope that by next Thanksgiving a lot of destruction (here in New York and the rest of the world) will be taken care of and that there will be no more destruction and devastation. Amen.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Waking Up

My parents did not have a car. Needless to say that most of the time we used either public transportation or private rickshaws (yes driven by foot by men) or auto rickshaws to go places.  We would look at people with cars with envy.  For a lot of young people the vision of owning and driving a car worked as an incentive to study good and to go to college. Here in America  just like a lot of immigrants my husband and I felt lucky to own a car and then two.  Yes we do work hard to get what we have just like most people.   However we try not to go overboard and waste resources including money. I am sure a lot of people ( including people of my own culture) look at us as thrifty or cheap.  I always remember the advise given to me by my grandma: "We cannot control the attitude given to us by others, but we can certainly control how we react."  So smaller cars  and combining a couple of errands to save gas has been our rule.  


Last weekend we went to the Palisades shopping center.  I generally do not like the holiday crowd (having done customer service). My husband loves crowds. He loves the holiday music and the decorations and all. So when we saw the parking lot half empty he was kind of disappointed.  Less than two weeks before Thanksgiving and just about five weeks before Christmas, the parking lot  got me worried too.  I was thinking of the economy. However when we went inside, the mall was just as crowded as it would be any other holiday period. That got us puzzled.  Our daughter was wondering if people were carpooling. Anyway this was a good thing everyone was doing, I thought.  When it was time for us to go home, we saw a huge crowd by the mall entrance.  What I saw next made me really happy. There were at least six buses lined up and they had signs that said their destinations.  They were not going to just New York city but suburbs as well. I was happy that we are waking up to the fact that driving an SUV for one person is not a smart thing to do. Even if it took rationing of gas, at least we are growing up.We are beginning to understand that taking a bus is OK, even if we live in a suburb.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Stay Safe Everyone







I am not so sure how many of our blogger friends have electricity today, but I hope that everyone is safe wherever they are. Please do not try to be brave. I know that certain people cannot say that to their loved ones because they are either working in police force or are firefighters or medics.
Harvest moon is beautiful to look at, but they say that high tides and Harvest moon are not a good combination.
Hopefully by tomorrow everything will be calm and our trick or treaters will not be disappointed. 
Hopefully sixty some million people who are affected by this storm are safe and sound indoors.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Learning from Each Other

Before I forget:- I would like to thank everyone who writes a blog. I try to read as much as I can and sometimes I do leave a comment and sometimes I do not.  I hope that everyone keeps writing because blogs are inspirational, informational, and a lot of fun. For me writing is cathartic, although lately I have been so busy with my own life that I have overlooked some issues that I could have brought to people's attention. Also I have forgotten my password for Linkedin and as much as I want to befriend people, I am not able to. 

By now I think most of us have heard about the syringes that are infected with Fungal Meningitis. It is so sad and so ironic that people who went to a doctor to get a treatment for their backache got infected because of these syringes. I do not want to start a rant about what the FDA does and does not do. I just would like to create an awareness in people about the importance of good posture. I am not saying that all back injuries are caused by a bad posture. What I am saying is that while we have no control over getting hit by a drunk driver and getting hurt, we can try and learn from each other. 

Just about three years ago, my husband's nephew had told us that he was in a lot of pain. The Vertebra near his neck was kind of scraped and that he has to wear a brace most of the time. He was never hurt or had fallen or had an auto accident. The reason for the pain in his neck was just the mere fact that he was working at his desk for hours in a row. I had then remembered that we used to tell people at work to be careful about doing one task for a long time. In one of the safety training sessions we had learned that OSHA rules require that no one should work at one task for more than two hours in a row. While standing at a cash register hours in a row can be detrimental to your cardiovascular system, sitting at a computer desk for hours in a row can do serious damage to your spine and your nerves.  I wish that I had placed the due emphasis on this fact before a loved one was diagnosed with a herniated disc and was told by her doctor to get another job.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Over Looked?

Most of us remember the pyramid of needs from our eighth grade social studies / civics class. I am not so sure as to how many of us remember all five sections and how many of us remember only three. I had to google it and actually learn it all over again, but that is me, an older women, so I guess it does not matter.  However it does matter when we look at the world as a place that needs to be guarded and people, plants and animals that live here have to be taken care of.  Where am I going with this? or where is this conversation coming from?

I am sure  a lot of parents whose kids have special needs are doing their best to be there for them  I guess I am simply worried that the rest of us tend to forget that our kids have psychological needs as well. We simply think that once a child is a high school graduate and his basic needs are covered, our duties as parents are done. I tend to think differently because as I look around I see that a lot of young people are unhappy. Just because babies have become people do we stop looking into their eyes and ask if they are all right?

I guess I always feel a need to urge people to get to know their kids even when they have become adults as people change and kids become people. Also, I have a need to urge young people to find someone (even one person) they can confide in.  It is best if young people talk to their parents, but if for some reason they cannot, it is not that hard to find another person they can share their thoughts with. 

My heart goes out to the family and friends of the victims of Colorado shooting as I watch the television coverage of the tragedy. My mind however races back to the past tragedies of the same kind.  I  cannot help wondering about the terms and relationship dynamics of the suspect with his loved ones.

Was it a science project for him or was he an extremely lonely guy, whatever the case maybe if he had someone he could trust and talk to, get guidance from, be friends with, maybe a lot of lives would have been saved. I am not being sympathetic with the suspect I am praying that no such shootings take place again - ever.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

How Cute !

I usually do not post links( unless asked ) but this time I could not resist. I hope that every one enjoys this as much as I did.


Cute kids and haircuts

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Concerns

Before I forget, I would like to thank every one who blogs.  I try and read a lot of blog entries and sometimes I leave a comment and sometimes I don't. I used to leave a comment each time I read something but for some reason, I am not able to come up with things to write  any more. The struggles of asthma and to some extent laziness that accompanies ailment seems to have erased the part of my brain that used to get inspiration to write. I hope that no one goes through this phase, because I love to read blogs. They are informative, inspiring and most of all a lot of fun.


I have to apologise to Melinda  who had sent me a very good link about driver less cars. I had promised to post that link on my blog, but since I am not very tech savy, I had to wait for my daughter to show me how to post the link. So here it is. Enjoy. Thanks Melinda. 

driverless cars infographic

Source: http://coupons.org

Sunday, June 17, 2012

HAPPY FATHER'S DAY

HAPPY FATHER'S DAY
Happy Father's Day to my husband, my son, my brothers, my uncles, my cousins,my friends, my blogger friends, my neighbors and my bosses. 


I wish everyone good health and happiness. I hope that all of us understand the value we have in our loved ones. Let us all cherish the time that we have while we still have each other around us. 


PS:- Want to see a wonderful son and his father ? Check out Tim's place restaurant online. His and his dad's story is amazing.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

HAPPY MOTHER"S DAY

HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY


Happy Mother's day to all, new mothers, older mothers, grandmothers, mothers in law, and mothers to be. My best wishes are with you even if you are a son, a brother or an uncle or a father because everyone matters even on a mother's day.  This mother's day I would like to say that I am what I am because of my loved ones, my friends and my blogger friends, my neighbors and my friends from work. Your advise and your opinions have improved me. If my mom was around she would agree with me. My father, who always used to say that we are ever changing and every little improvement matters would have been happy with me too.

Monday, April 30, 2012

A to Z Challenge

A to Z on my mind:-  Z is for Zenith.  My brother-in-law once said that the Indian community is unfair with men. That statement was heavy enough for me to start a debate. However, I did not. It is against Indian tradition to prolong topics of differences when it comes to having a conversation with your in-laws. I asked my father if he feels that Indian community is unfair with men. He said that it is not about unfairness, it is about the burden men have been told to carry. I then asked how so. He said that men are told to shoot for the stars when it comes to achieving educational and financial goals. Later on in life I noticed that people who achieve good positions are admired in life for getting education and job titles more than for being honest and fair. People would say that such an such person has reached the Zenith. I now understand what my brother-in-law was saying. 


A lot of times parents seek men of good position for their daughter to get married to, without realizing that it is possible that their daughter might not want to put the entire burden of making a living on her husband. She may want to be able to carry her own burden, by doing more than being an at home mom. 

A to Z Challenge

A to Z on my mind:-  Y is for Yaya.  This post is in the honor of all the bloggers who are grandmas. However I would like to direct everyone's  attention to the blog "The Whispering Pines". It's writer is a very special Yaya. She is a well balanced citizen who maintains a very responsible job, besides being a devoted daughter, loving wife, loving mom and of course a loving Grandma / Yaya. Her blog posts are full of inspiration, perfect pictures of Holidays and activities of her community, whether they be fundraisers or simple socials. I can see her love for her grandkids in the notes she writes under the pictures she shares with us. Good work Yaya.
I miss my grandmas, both of them although I am a grandmother myself. So hang on to your Yayas.

A to Z challenge

A to Z on my mind :- X is for XOXO.  I am not a big fan of Soap Operas as such but Monday nights I like to watch the television show "Gossip Girl". I like the show because of the good taste of fashion and because of the fact that I will never be able to read those books. I like the way the girl writes about the ups and downs of the Upper East Side society of New York and how she ends the show by saying  XOXO ( the voice of Kristen Bell). I did not know the meaning of the term XOXO as it  was not a part of the vocabulary in English language that was taught in India. Also in Gossip Girl, there are a lot of relations that are X, the infamous X.  Whenever I asked anyone the reason for their divorce, people never took the blame on themselves, they always blamed their X, except one coworker. She said that it was entirely her fault, she is very big on keeping the house free of problems and she nagged her husband to get things fixed to the point of driving him insane. I liked the fact that in spite of being divorced she still called her X her husband.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

A to Z challenge

A to Z on my mind:- W is for Winner. I have to hand it to my father for teaching us things that matter. He always told us not to think of ourselves in the terms of winners or losers, (except for when we are playing a game of cards just for fun). Grown ups in India did not believe in too much competition as such and sometimes it did hamper our growth as competition can be good as well. The term "race" was always reserved for rich people who spent money on "horse racing". It wasn't until I came to America that I understood the real terms of losers and winners in life as a whole. People called themselves losers and sometimes called others losers. I asked one of my coworkers what people meant when they called themselves losers, he said that that was just an expression of frustration for not being able to make it in this world. I told him that if someone is still living they are still in the game therefore they cannot be losers. He laughed and when I told him that that was my fathers teaching, he kind of gave it a thought. So this is my conclusion.
Never consider yourself as a loser.
You might be taking care of a child with special needs, (your own child, your grandchild, your sibling, any friend or relative) as long as you are trying. you are a Winner.

You are a Winner no matter what people say. They may say that you have a problem, they may say you are different or have special needs, do not worry. There might be people who have full capacity to do a lot of things in life, but don't want to. So if you have limited capacity but you are trying you are a "Winner".


In the television show "Community", Britta says "Britta for the Win". I would like to get the permission of the writer to change that into "We are for the Win".
So next time someone tells you anything negative, just think of it as a virus in your computer and erase it out of your mind. If someone says that you have special needs and you feel bad, please don't as all of have special needs. It is just that some of us have our needs highlighted , but if we read people carefully we will see that all of us have needs that can be highlighted. We all need to be cared for in someway or the other no matter where we come from and how old we are.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

A to Z Challenge

A to Z on my mind:- V is for Veronica :- As much as I am worried about memory loss and the "A" Word, this song by Elvis Costello kept on coming in my mind. Now that I am on the letter "V" I cannot wait to use it for my post today. I get a feeling that Elvis Costello is talking about someone who is only able to see her past in bits and pieces rather than a whole sequence or a memory pattern. The effect that the song has left on me makes me feel that no one is one hundred percent sure about what is going to happen to us as we age. You decide.




 

A to Z Challenge

A to Z on my mind:- U is for us.


Most of the time when we read the word us, we think about a couple in love or a married couple. . Sometimes we use the word us in reference to our family members.
In biology we learned that a "kingdom" is the first classification of life itself. That got me thinking. How about we use the word us to describe everything that has life on this Earth. Hence the word us can describe Earthlings.





So we are part of an us as Earthlings, part of an us as animal kingdom versus plants, then us as in human beings versus rest of the animals  , then us  as part of our own family, us as a couple. If we just stick to an us in a limited sense of the word, then other beings from outside the Earth might divide us and take advantage of us.




I would not hold it against anyone if they say that I am thinking like a five year old. The thing is today someone was discussing about their relative who  is not recognizing her family members. She apparently said that her HHA (home health aid) was their cousin. I told them that it would not be unusual for an aging person to mix up relatives, then I was told that the HHA was of a different background.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

A to Z Challenge

A to Z on my mind:-


T is for Traffic.  I urge everyone to please drive carefully. Every traffic jam, I worry. Even though the number of fatalities in auto accidents have gone down, one is still too many.


Highway Wreath

Policemen, firemen and paramedics
They were all on their toes
Trying to save who ever it was
Doing their best, God really knows
Teenage driver, a tired mother
Or even a second shifter
Is that her or is that him
A DWI or a drifter
Everyone was going frantic
Trying to pull the wounded out
Calling the local hospitals
The nearest ones about
Half a mile traffic back up
Now becoming mile or two
Tired travelers getting more tired
Not knowing what to do
People wondering what happened
Was it a blind spot
Or was it the brake, the speed
Or a tire that was shot
I was sitting counting my sins
Patiently at the wheel
There are enough broken hearts
Enough pain we had to feel
O Dear God please spare
The paramedics the pain
Of having to pick up that phone
And tell that, it was in vain

Monday, April 23, 2012

A to Z challenge

A to Z on my mind:-
S is for Self Esteem.
Creating awareness in young parents about the need for them to be there for their children is the main reason I started blogging. I am not saying that young parents are not there for children today, all I am saying is that no one can say with a hundred percent guarantee that their child will never have an emotional issue. The human mind is as vast and as deep as is interesting. There are a lot of variations and a lot of factors that contribute to the welfare of a child and today we realize that emotional health is as important as physical health.
Even as adult I have come to a realization that almost every day, I think twice before wearing a certain outfit to work. Is it because I am worried about how I look, is it because I do not think much of myself or is it because I am letting others decide for me what I am worth?

"I had the best parents as I grew up, especially my mom and dad," I told my daughter one day. She laughed, as who else would be your parents. The fact is, in those day at least, almost every adult, ie your grandparents, your aunts and uncles, your neighbor, your household help to name a few loved us.. Every one of them told us how special we were and there was no question about us not being as good as anyone else as the popular belief was that God made us in his own image, so how can we not be good? You could take the poorest of the poor and ask him about his self worth, he will say that he is no less than anyone. "If I am poor it does not mean that I do not have value," is a common phrase.


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You're afraid you don't fit in, you're afraid you'll be alone. Great news, you share that with all of us. So you'll never be alone, and you'll always fit in.
~Annie Edison


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A to Z Challenge

A to Z on my mind:- 
R is for Reputation:-  I was a very happy person in my last job. Khakis and cardigans and sneakers to wear at work. How much comfortable can one get. Too bad the department was closed and now I am in customer service (again) and back in business attire.

I would hand it to my Mom for teaching me about the things that are important in this worldly world. As a teenager I used to have at least four pair of pumps while only one pair of sneakers and mostly classic clothes rather than yearly fads. While classy clothes do not hamper any comfort, pumps however kill your feet. So what do we do ? We put up with the pain. People say that our reputation matters most in two places. One is our prayer houses and the other is work place. She was right. Do I want to teach the same things to younger generation  I wouldn't know.

Getting old makes it  harder to keep up with our reputation of being a well dressed, well put together salesperson. No matter how much makeup I put or how classy my suit is, if I did not sleep good because of one asthma attack after another, I will not look good. So I asked my manager, if I can do some other task, as I look like a train wreck, she quickly said, "I know-" then she corrected herself and said, "I an sorry I did not mean it that way, what I meant was that asthma attacks can be bad." This is fine. I like honesty. Do I need to worry about my new nickname "train wreck" ? No!

"Do not worry so much about how society perceives you that you forget who you are." I heard something like this on a nighttime television show, believe it or not.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

A to Z challenge

A to Z on my mind:-


Q is for Questions. Today, there was a tribute by Purple Stride and Lisa Niemi ( Patrick Swayze's wife)  was in New York City to support those of us who lost our loved ones to Pancreatic Cancer. I mentioned this at work today, as I was hardly concentrating and the day was dragging. I wish I could go join everyone, but as life dictates us, I had to be at work. I would not be able to take time off because it was not long time ago that I had asked for time off for my husband's stress test. A coworker was saying that there would not be any point because it would unnecessarily bring back memories of how we lost our father. I guess she was kind of right, but wouldn't it be nice to know that I contributed to help out in research and there might be a day when the life span of patients with cancer of Pancreas might get better. I hope that my prayers get answered. I would not be asking why my dad, why at the age of fifty nine?
 
Speaking of cancer, I have a Question about skin cancer. Why do people who really don't like people with darker skin tone want to get a tanWe sold a lot of bathing suits today. Cute ones, modest ones, ones that are revealing and ones that you can hardly cover anything with. I was asking everyone if they have bought sun tan lotion with needed UV protection. Girls at the cosmetic counter gave me a thumbs up because they get commission from big brands.
Thinking about vacations made me think of the things we indulge in. For example, food. My question is what is wrong with a picture of our country where there are programs to help get rid of hunger among kids and at the same time there are programs to reduce the obesity rate among the young. What are we doing wrong?
One last question. when are we going to start thinking of prevention so we don't have to worry too much about treatment?

Friday, April 20, 2012

A to Z challenge

A to Z on my mind:-


P is for Prayers:-  There was a time, some forty years ago, I used to ask my grandmas (both sides) to pray for my test results to be good, or even to get admission in a good college. Today, a young coworker told me that she is done with her SATs and asked me if I can pray for her to get good grades. Does God listen to older people or it is just that we look at older people as being close to God, I wouldn't know. I would think that God would listen to very young kids as they are pure at heart.


P is also for Peace. I pray for Peace all the time. For Peace of mind and also for Peace in this world.

                                                                             

P is also for Perception.  I wish that we see everyone with fairness and not be blinded and be biased. That night after coming back from the eye doctor, I felt that I was in peace with myself, my prayers were answered and I started having value for things that I took for granted.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

A to Z Challenge

Before I forget:-  I urge all my family members, my friends, my blogger friends, my neighbors and my coworkers to please, please, please, take care of your eyes, especially if you are a diabetic or have high blood pressure. I understand that eye glasses can be expensive but if there is any spending money one may have, the purchase of a pair of eye glasses is most justified. Also, if you are changing your glasses and your old ones are not of use or are out of style, please donate the old frames.








A to Z on my mind -  O is for Opticians. 
Almost three years ago, as I was comparing notes on a computer at work, I started seeing red and green lights connecting my eyes and the computer. I was very much scared and turned off the computer. Then when I was driving home, the same thing happened at every green light I passed. Flashes of very bright light were hitting my eyes. They were very pretty. They seemed like the shape of lightning bolts you see before a thunderstorm, except these were green. Red light did not bother me. The eye doctor dilated my pupils, and thank God, there were no signs of Glaucoma. Then they did some kind of test. This test was beautiful. So many green lights flashing in front of me that I did not want them to stop the test. It turned out that since I am aging, the fluid in my eyes was getting thick and my eyes were getting used to that. The optician said that it should not take long and my eyes should be well adjusted and they let an ophthalmologist follow me up. While a lot of us have floaters, the thickening of the fluid is something aging does to us.

I remember once my eyes had adjusted to the thicker fluid, I was counting my brownie points to please God and that gave me a whole new perspective on life.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

A to Z challenge

A to Z on my mind:-
N is for Nerves.  Just about ten years ago, one of my coworkers stepped on my big toe with her high heels shoe as she did not realize I was right behind her. We were standing in a meeting and my shoes were good enough to take the pressure and I felt only a little bit of pain. A couple of days later, my son noticed that that toe had become black and blue and and asked me what happened. I had kind of forgotten what happened so I told him that I did not know. He was very angry. When I told him to calm down as I remembered that a friend had accidentally stepped on it and I did not realize that it was that bad, he calmed down a bit. Then he told me not to scare him like that ever again, as I am a diabetic and if my blood sugar fluctuates dangerous things can happen. I told him that I read about these things and that he does not have to worry.

The Nerves that I worry about are the ones that drive me crazy, those that do not let me relax and those that make me hold on to my heart at the smallest possibility of running into an other car or someone running into mine. Like the other day, a young girl who is naturally quite pretty was actually combing her hair while driving. Her car was right behind mine and I was a nervous rack because one sudden stop, she would easily hit me. Why was she combing her hair at the end of the day, I wouldn't know. All I know is that I want to get home at end of the day. So is this because I am older than her? I asked the girl at the pretzel shop, she said that it is not my age, as she does not like drivers like that one and she changes lanes right away as she becomes nervous as well. That made me feel so much better.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

A to Z challenge

Before I forget:- 
I would like to thank my family,my blogger friends, my friends and my neighbors for their concern about my health. Thank you guys. I think that just knowing that I am worth your thoughts made me feel better than any medicine could ever do. (shush my doctor is not reading this). I could have contacted a bug at the heart center because as much as I get stressed out about my hubby, I am a tough grandma who wants to set an example for my kiddos and not forget my usual meds. I urge everyone to please take care of yourselves especially while  you are under stress about a family member's health.
Also I want to mention that M is for Masarath,  my daughter's name . It means Happiness.
A to Z on my Mind:-
M is for Mind:-
"A mind is a terrible thing to waste," they say. I think that it would be much more appropriate to put it this way: "A mind is a terrible thing to ignore".  Seriously, why did it take us so long to understand human mind. I guess it is easy for me to say this. I don't mean to be ungrateful about all the research that has been done in the past. Medical students spend nights and days (without any social life) to study human body including human  brain and then work lengthy hours for three to five years (underpaid) as residents.  My question is for all of us non-medical people (laymen as they call us). Do we understand human mind or are we at least trying to come close to understanding, is my question.
Watching my co-worker cry over the fears of the possibility of her son being diagnosed as an autistic child was tearing me inside. I would come up with different comforting statements but I always wondered how right or wrong I was. What would I do if I were in her shoes?

It is not just one or two aspects of human behavior or even emotions that are causing a lot of hurt to a lot of people. It was not very long time ago, there was a stigma about HIV. So why should we take time to scratch it off of conditions as anxiety (especially social anxiety), depression, autism, down syndrome, aspergers, and even shyness.

As much as I worry about my own memory, at the end of the day, I pray for the day when parents and loved ones of people with emotional problems don't have to worry about people finding out.

We will still be depending on scholars and doctors to find out more about human brain and the parts that control our emotions and chemicals that can be of help.


Friday, April 13, 2012

A to Z challenge

A to Z on my mind:-


L is for Life.  I have been sneezing my brains out and people have been blessing me. I was told as a young kid that sneezing is a sign of life.

A chick coming out of an egg is a sign of life for me.

As I was watching the news this evening I came to an understanding that sometimes our leaders don't get the due credit for some of the amazing things they do. One of the mayors in New Jersey, risked his own life to help save a neighbor from her house on fire. Now that is value of a life.


I also would like to give credit to the policeman who helped me steer my car out when I was stranded on the storm king mountain in a fierce snow storm. For an asthmatic, being stranded alone can be life threatening.

Reading Hunger Games can make one realize that our lives today are no less than luxury.


I feel lame writing such a small blog for such a big subject, but I think writing wholeheartedly  means you really love to write even if there is not too much research done. My husband says that I should not write as I am sick and weak.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

A to Z challenge

A to Z on my mind:-
K is for Kids
I was supposed to have written on the letter K  yesterday. I was so tired that I did not even clear the kitchen table and I was closing my eyes. Next thing I knew I was up at two in the morning. I did not feel like turning my computer on. My husband had two very tiring days after his stress test. So, do I have a blog entry for the letter K? No not really.However I remember writing about an experience as a young girl about understanding kids. It went something like this.


"Thank God, rainbows are in the sky, no one can spoil them," said a first grader when I was shadowing my Hindi teacher. 
"That's right, you are very smart," I said, and my Hindi teacher gave me a thumbs up. 

"Wow," I said as I sat down with my Hindi teacher for my review as a peer teacher. "That was so profound." 
"Yes," my teacher said. "About the rainbow? You know, Munir, all babies are born with pure colours, I mean qualities, as good as or maybe better than a rainbows. When we start to grow up however they get sorted out and separated. Then it seems like our colours are locked up in a Kaleidoscope, we see them in different designs but they are still limited and not as pure as a rainbow's." 

That was a very heavy statement. I was then a teenager and of different faith than hers, so I remained silent. For a long time I could not get the bubbly feeling that everyone gets from a Kaleidoscope. Years later, I realized what she meant. Now I am open minded about different concepts - even those that are new to me.


Tuesday, April 10, 2012

A to Z challenge

A to Z and my mind:-


J is for Journey:-


A lot of parkways in the tri-state area are basically for commuters and passenger cars only - - no trucks allowed.  Almost every month as I am driving and listening to the traffic report on the radio, there is an incident when a truck goes on one of the parkways. Result ? Either one of the underpasses gets scraped and debris falls or the truck stops just before the underpass. In either case traffic jam is inevitable. These incidences are happening more often as truck drivers are not paying attention to signs but are only listening to the navigator systems. Before GPS there were less of such incidences as per record.

What about our real journey? The Journey that takes us to the destination that we all desire. Rest after finishing the tasks of life. One of my coworkers said that the cruise she went on actually made her sick, she would have rather stayed home during her vacation and rested. I asked her why did she go. She said that she went because every older couple does. So are we being guided by others and not thinking? I don't get sea sick, I love the ocean, but if I were to get sea sick then I would think before putting in the money on a cruise. I would ask my hubby to kindly excuse me.

As far as I am concerned, I do not have any destination. I live as life wants me to live. I make short term plans and use a year or five years or even ten as landmarks. As most of my life is behind me I do not see a point to look at my life as a whole journey. We were told as kids that life is a journey and heaven is our destination.
I cannot talk about an unknown destination, but if life is a journey, I would like to make this journey as pleasant as possible not only for me and my family, but the rest of the travelers as well namely, humans, animals, birds, plants and creatures that I may not have heard of.

Monday, April 9, 2012

A to Z challenge

A to Z and my mind:-


I is for Image. 
As a little girl I was always fascinated by reflections and shadows. I always used to ask my grown ups as to why our reflection in a mirror was so much like us and the one on the surface of water was not. I was given a simple answer ie scientific reasons.
I was able to understand another aspect of the word Image only after listening to a conversation between my grown ups about a singer who had changed his image to look more modern. I was puzzled. How does a person change his or her image? Well, it turned out that the word Image was not used in the scientific sense but social sense. So, we can make our own image? "Well we don't. It is mostly the famous who do that," I was told.

In England when I saw the television show Keeping Up Appearances I fully understood the meaning of the word Image in the social sense. As funny as the show was, I was able to understand human nature and what goes on in this world.

In India because of the caste system, lower middle income group of people and low income group of people really do not worry about image as such. They pretty much are complacent as they think that it is their destiny to look the way they do. Also unmarried girls wear prettier things than married women who do not have to worry about looks as they are already blessed with a husband. This always bugged me.

In America we women (and sometimes men too) go out of our way to make sure our Image does not get spoiled. I wish that young men and women try to stay fit for health reasons than for looks. I also wish that we do not become so Image driven that we buy things to show off that we have them even if we cannot afford them. Imagine that there is a mirror in which we can clearly see what we actually are and what we are projecting ourselves to look like a lot of our financial problems would be solved.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

A to Z challenge

A to Z and my Mind:-


H is for Happiness. It may be past midnight in the east coast, but some parts of the US it is still Sunday night. The fact is that I did not get a minute for myself all day Sunday and finally when I did I fell asleep. Now that I am up I want to write. This is important.This makes me Happy.


H is for Happiness, the literal translation of my daughter's  name.


H is for Happy Birthday. It is (the 8th of April) my son's birthday. My first born's birthday. He came home on Saturday with his wife and kids and we had a lot of fun. So this morning he called me and said thanks for the good time. I wished him Happy Birthday. Later on during the day, I called him to wish again, forgetting that I had spoken to him.I waited all day for him to call me back. He probably has his cell phone turned off. Now I remember that he had told me that he had a lot to do. A lot of papers to correct. He said that teaching is great but sometimes he has to bring home the papers and work on the weekends as well.

Happy Easter every one !  It was fun coloring Easter Eggs. The kids were really exited about coloring the eggs.

Also Happy Blogging every one!


Happy A to Z Challenge !

Saturday, April 7, 2012

A to Z challenge

A to Z and my Mind:-


G is for Gravity. Why is Gravity on my mind? Well, it is like this. I am able to breath  through the night each night because of Gravity. Back in 1981, my X-Rays showed that I had an duodenal ulcer and had incompetent esophagus. The radiologist said that it was because of the narrow esophagus that I had an ulcer. Whatever I ate took forever to go down to my stomach and as a result the lining of my stomach was damaged from the acid. He told me that if I lie down on my right side, It will help a lot as because of Gravity the food will get to my stomach faster. Today I use the same method of keeping the acid low. My asthma seems to improve because of the use of Gravity as well. The acid stays down instead of seeping up and getting into my lungs in the form of tiny particles.
G is also for Gratitude. I am thankful that over thirty years ago someone gave me a sound advice.  I am also thankful that I have a loving family, great friends and great blogger friends.
G is also for both my Grandmas. Now that today I am a Grandma, I am thankful to God because he protects my Grandkids.  Whenever I see them I have a Goodtime.

Friday, April 6, 2012

A to Z challenge

A to Z and my mind:-


F is for Fish Ducky. A blogger friend of all. Caring and thoughtful. Fish Ducky you are an antioxidant, just like Fresh Fruits.


F is for Fresh.  It has been a long time since I was as confident as today. the reason being; last years blog entry for the letter "F" is Fresh in my memory. If not one hundred percent, at least ninety percent. For someone who is worried about memory loss, I think it is something to be happy about. I am not even going to go back and read it, I am just going to write it again, right from my memory. I hope that I am not going to get in trouble with any blogger rules of A to Z Challenge, as this one is my own challenge.

Fresh vegetables.
Fresh Fruits.
Fresh Fruits smoothies.
Fresh water.
Freshly baked bread.
"Gee, you look Fresh today."

I am not double checking it. I do not want to ruin it for myself.
Today my husband said that it happens to him too. When he tries too hard to remember something, he does not remember it. That is the reason he asks me things. What a laugh.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

A to Z challenge

A to Z and my mind:-


E is for Energy:-
I almost did not blog today. The day goes by with room for every task, except our own hobby or need. Well, my hobby is kind of my need.  I have promised myself that I will write for each letter and keeping my promise is my need. Having time and energy to write may be another story. Where does energy go? Being stranded in traffic does not require any kind of exercise, as a matter of fact I should have been full of energy as I was doing nothing. Then why I am exhausted. Oh well trying to figure that out will make me more tired.
In my experience, the following facts are good to remember.

Talking takes a lot of energy.


Brain energy gets used up if I try very hard to remember something. If I let things go, sometimes the memories come back voluntarily. This is a big change that comes with aging.

Caffeine only blocks sleep receptors, it does not give energy.


My friends who smoke (including my brother) say that smoking gives them energy, but I think the thought of having time aside for oneself makes them feel good, which they misunderstand  for energy. I dare them to try quitting and see how much good that will do for them

If in spite of eating good quality food and in good quantity and  taking rest and getting good sleep you still feel that you do not have any energy please see your doctor. Please do.

When it comes to energy as in utilities and gasoline. we know what we need to do - conserve and use very carefully.

When it comes to developing stamina (energy bank) we need to use energy in the form of exercise (total opposite of money.)

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

A to Z Challenge

A to Z and my Mind




D is for Determination

When I think of people like Helen Keller I always wonder what was it that made them do things that we would not expect people with disabilities to do. I remember applying for a teachers assistant's job for special ed kids and when they gave me a tour of the facility I could not control my tears. One of the teachers there (who already knew me) told me that I would not be fit for the job, and that I am better off dealing with audit in clothes, colours, designs and SKU and PLU. I felt like I was so far from humanity and am living in a fake world. He told me that some people are happy people and cannot deal with harshness of realities and as much as I may have a heart of gold, I do not have nerves strong enough. So here I am today, helping people spend money and be fussy with the tiniest of details. I guess I did not have what Helen Keller did - determination. My coworker told me that I was not desperate and Helen Keller was. Now I am beginning to understand what my friend meant. Fear of losing my memory has made me tough and now I am determined to remember as much as I can. So is determination a child of desperation or merely desire?

I salute people who help people with disabilities.. Their desire to help people must be stronger than mine.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

A to Z challenge

A to Z and my Mind


C is for Communication 


My husband and I were taking a walk in K-Mart yesterday (as it was kind of cold to walk outside) and I spotted the Super Hero Squad DS game. I was really tempted to get it for our grandson, but my husband wanted to make sure that he does not have it already. I called our daughter and asked her to text her brother and ask if they had that game. I then realized how much behind I am. I have a cell phone, but I hardly use it. Our kids want to update it for me, but I am sure I will not use most of the features. Now that times are changing and methods of our communication are changing I am worried about what will happen to us if one day we end up reversing time and go back to even 1980. I felt that I was kind of handicapped when we lost telephone service last month. It did feel like we were living in ancient times.

Everyone says that communicating through social networking is great. I also know that people who hardly knew each other in high school are friends on social networks and have put their past differences behind. I think that it is a step closer to our dreams of peace and friendship on our planet.

When it comes to peace, I always remember my Mom's instructions of not extending and elaborating a conversation while arguing or in a bad mood. She always told us to save the details for when we would calm down. I remember being a hard head whenever I was yelled at. To this day I cannot deal with being yelled at any point in my life. I am guilty of yelling at my kids once in a while, but I am sorry.

I urge today's parents to tell their kids to never be shy about coming to them when other kids make fun of them and that talking with parents does not make a boy or a girl a baby.

Monday, April 2, 2012

A to Z challenge

A to Z and my Mind


B is for Balance


Balance is an instrument for measuring weight, we learned this fact in second grade.

In an Indian movie a poor girl points out at a Balance and challenges a king for a fair judgement as in India we also use a Balance as a symbol of justice. I asked my father about the reason behind it. He said that it is because a Balance is also a symbol of equality.  Then he explained to me the fact that we use the word Balance to describe equilibrium for example when our foot loses balance we fall.

Gardeners in India say that if we play around with Balance of nature, disasters can happen. I used to get upset as they had implied that we bring disasters on ourselves. Today I read something to that effect in information about ozone layers and how to be eco friendly.

Everyday I pray that my mind does not lose Balance and I am as productive and helpful as I can be.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

A to Z challenge

A to Z  and my Mind :-


A is for American Dream.


I learned about the Native Americans from my neighbors and about the Pilgrims from Charlie Brown.

I learned about breakfast cereal from the television and about the American dream from the mortgage companies.

I learned about the damages of "television time" and processed foods after my husband's open heart surgery.

Today a lot of us in America are dreaming of the day when everyone will be healthy, both physically and mentally.

Tomorrow is National Autism awareness day.

Saturday, March 31, 2012

Disturbed

Where did the month of March go ?  I am usually very good at keeping track of time. I like to be as productive as possible. However as I am getting older it seems like I end up wasting time in getting upset over things that I have no control over. I have told people that there is no point in getting stressed out. Some of my friends have remarked that I do not know what real stress is therefore it is easy for me to tell people not to stress out. Three years ago I was going nuts about my husband's open heart surgery but handled the whole line of his tests and procedures pretty good while praying at the same time. Now that he has to go for one more set of stress tests I am upset at my husband and worried about him at the same time. What do you do, when someone does not want to follow doctor's orders. I guess nothing, if that person is an adult and has a mind of his own. On top of my worries, our telephone line was a mess. No incoming calls at all. The telephone company asked us if we had cell phones and I said yes we did. That was a mistake. So, if we are not one hundred percent dependent on the telephone we are put in the end of the list that the repairmen were to be sent. So we lost the telephone service and the Internet for that week. Then someone fixes the phone. That day the phone worked for a couple of hours then again no dial tone. After four days the repairman comes in and tells us that the phone should work and it did. I asked the repairman if they had a lot of work. He said not too much. I then asked him why did the company's rep told us that they were busy. He said that the company likes to play games.

Last week my friend Jean very proudly showed of her Magnolias to me. They were in half bloom. She said that she could not wait until they are in full bloom. This week, one night the sudden drop in temperature killed all her Magnolias. She is however gracious and is praying for the apple blossom to be all right. That reminds me of my friend's job. His daytime job is working in apple orchards and delivering apples to the nearby stores. If apple blossoms die because of wintry weather in spring there will be something for me to really worry about.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

An Interview with Barbara Whittington




Hi everyone. One of the biggest fears I have in life is the day when there will be no one to write things for people to read. To me writers have a very big place in my heart and in this world. We should never fail to remember that. Like my father's gardener always said, "We leave our words behind, our deeds and the trees we planted."


I recently had a chance to interview Barbara Whittington about her recently published book, Vada Faith.


It is my utmost pleasure to have known you. Your book Vada Faith seems like it is heart warming and has some very nice reviews. I am glad that I have the opportunity to ask you some questions as I am always very much interested in understanding authors.


1)  How long have you been interested in writing?


FIRST,  let me say thanks to Munir for asking for an interview. My first blog interview - and I'm excited!!! So a big thanks. I've been writing for over 20 years. I started out writing essays and I 
took a creative writing class at the local college. I was thrilled that I sold one of the first essays I wrote  to The Cleveland Plain Dealer, Ohio's largest newspaper.  The essay was about trying to get a sun tan in cloudy Cleveland. It was a cross between fact and fiction. Or "faction." The newspapers were more accepting of essays and slice of life pieces than they are now in this depressed economy. 
My interest in writing began in high school when I had to write a short story for an assignment for English. It was love at first word. The story was pretty pitiful but I realized then that I loved writing stories.



2) What motivates you to write?


I'm motivated by many things. When I came up with the idea for Vada Faith, at the time I was intrigued by the topic of surrogacy. Who could carry a baby nine months and give it up to another mother. So I started doing research, learning about the issues of surrogacy, the procedures at that time, 10 years ago, and I must say it's changed much in the last few years with surrogacy centers now found in many large cities. When I started this book it wasn't this way. So much was left
to the individuals who wanted to participate in this way of having a child.




3) What has motivated you to write this particular book?


As I said I was interested in the topic of surrogacy and that lead to the story of Vada Faith Waddell and how she got involved with Roy and Dottie Kilgore - small town criminals - and went down the wrong path of being a surrogate mother. With no contract, and flying by the seat of her pants, she got in more trouble than she bargained for. Plus she used her own egg to create this baby, unbeknownst to her family. You'd better believe this caused some battles at home.




4) What other books do you read ? What genre?


I love women's mainstream fiction and read mostly that. Though I have to admit I have several friends who write romantic suspense and I enjoy that as well.


My favorite authors include Anne Tyler, Elizabeth Berg, Jeanne Ray (Eat Cake), Southern author Lee Smith, and Irish writer Maeve Binchy, who writes beautiful fiction.




5) Can you give us a clue as to what your next book is about?


I have several books in the hopper. I believe I'll to do a book of short stories next because they're ready. Then I have a follow up book about Vada Faith. This one is called SWEET BABY JAMES and returns to Vada Faith's family after the surrogacy story ends. Vada Faith goes on to have a baby boy named James and he is kidnapped from her front porch in Shady Creek, West Virginia. This is not a REAL kidnapping story. The child is taken by mistake by someone who cares for him and only wants to get him home safe.


VADA FAITH is offered for $2.99 at Amazon.com


Paperbacks will be available in the next month or two.


My advice if you want to write is to READ READ READ.


I hope that every one enjoyed this interview. 

Monday, March 12, 2012

Guest Post


Hi every one. I apologize for being technologically challenged. My blog is of a very simple format. As much as I like to reach out to a lot of people and create awareness about what is good for all of us, and how to be on guard when it comes to devastating problems, I am not able to present various issues that might come up in everyday lives of so many of us. I would like to put this button on my blog, but even after trying hard I am not able to copy and paste it on the side of my blog as a lot of bloggers do (I even asked my daughter who is much more advanced than me for help).
I will appreciate if you visit the blog mentioned above. It means a lot to a very special mom, who is able to see her little one grow even after being diagnosed with cancer. Hopefully I might be able to have her as a "Guest Blogger" once I get the technology figured out . Thank You all in advance.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Big Shots?

Sometimes when I write, I feel like I am neglecting my husband. Writing is not his thing and neither is fiction reading. He will read as many non-fiction and informative books as he can in a day. That does not bother me, as I do the same with blog/magazine reading. It is when he is alone, not reading or watching the television I feel guilty about writing. My upbringing always echoed with the instructions to girls about not neglecting their husbands. Why don't I remember boys or men being told to not neglect their wives?  I don't know, maybe men were told just the same way as women were told. Maybe I just don't remember.

Daytime television shows have at least a couple of cases where men cheat on their wives, but also vice versa. I sometimes get disgusted when I see people complaining about their spouses spending too much time in making a living. They just need an excuse to have an affair. Talk about being ungrateful. I don't like being judgmental but I believe in being fair. So when a person marries someone what is the promise? Is conditional cheating included in the lists of things allowed?

In India where (and when) arrange marriages take place parents try to make sure that their daughters go in families where there are enough resources to give their daughters at least the same comfort and material goods as she grew up with, if not more. So if one is to marry a girl from a rich family he better make sure that he is making good money. A lot of times rich father in laws act like big shots in front of their daughters to look better than anyone else and I am sure that it can be hurtful. 


We came back from the movies a couple of hours ago. We saw "The Descendants". Our son in Hawaii said that he saw it three times as it was filmed in Hawaii. It is a very good movie. Now I have to see "The Artist" to compare and see how much better the other actor is. Anyway, I was not shocked about the infidelity nor was offended by the language because of the times that we are in. I was however hurt by the attitude of the father-in-law. He does not even know what kind of a wife his daughter was but he was quick to point his son-in-law that he did not give enough to his daughter. That I think is very unfair.