northern lights

northern lights

Friday, 30 November 2012


  In marital life bringing up children is one the most important roles  that the parents have to perform. I  am of the opinion that two individuals  may rather remain single if they shun children.Marriage is followed by  child birth sooner or later.Parenting is not an easy job.Parenting means that you  take the responsibility of bringing a living individual in the world.Parenting does not mean that we bring a child to the world and allow him to grow like a wild growth of bushes,uncared,unattended and unloved. Good parents care for the physical,emotional and social growth of the child.

              When we married we were both working. As working parents the  challenges are more. The child has to be kept in  the care of domestic helpers as was the case with us.We had no elders to  care for our children.How ever  after struggling for some months  we found a maid. She was from a good family background and took up the job solely for economic reasons. She stayed with us  for fourteen years.By the time she left  children were grown up and  wise enough to distinguish  between good and bad and right and wrong. We have two children, a boy and a girl. A major factor in bringing up children is how we treat them. Some parents are too strict while there are others who are over indulgent. In our case we were realistic.We took care to nurture in  them  self confidence and self dependence. However I will not call it independence.I narrate an incident when our son was admitted to St. Columba's School which was quite far away from our house. A taxi which  was  already ferrying  children  from home to school  and back was hired for sonny. We were  concerned how he would  cope up carrying  a heavy school bag . The taxi used to leave the children at the school gate. The class rooms were quite far from the gate. For a few days my husband went to the school and stood at a   crucial place from where he could see sonny boy going into and coming out of the classroom . It was on the second  day that he saw sonny  coming out and walking  towards the taxi.Suddenly the boy  hit some stone and fell down.Instinctively my husband  moved forward to help the  child but he withdrew  just to see the reaction of the child. Sonny got up and looked all around and dusted his school dress, took his bag from the  ground and  walked confidently  to the taxi.  Such incidents ensured the child would become  self reliant. At the same time we  inducted discipline in  them  without mentioning the word.'discipline'. I will quote another  instance to prove this. Sonny  did not like Laddoo.  One day ,as ill luck would have it,there was nothing I could give him for his School  tifin, except laddoos. I also told him to finish the  laddoos. Later I even forgot about it. After  school when the taxi came back   leaving all the children   home, sonny was not there. Two hours had elapsed and there was no sign of my son. I became panicky.  I questioned the taxi driver. He said that he thought that his  father  would have brought him back.I was scolding him when I just saw sonny boy  walking from a distance proceeding towards home.  The taxi driver rushed and brought him. I asked  sonny what happened, how he missed the taxi etc. He started crying and sobbingly replied that he was  eating the laddoos. Right from childhood  discipline was  ingrained. Our daughter too was taught the nuances of discipline since childhood. She had acquired the habit of sucking her thumb.People used to give  unsolicited advice,which I felt would hurt the child's mind.I  took a beautiful piece of cloth,decorated with sequins,  and  beads and stitched  a mitten.When I was embroidering it,she was curious to know what I was making. When it was completed,I made her  put it in her hands.  She was so happy to wear it.In the process she forgot about sucking her thumb. My purpose  was served. 

                     When they  were in school   there was  hardly any occasion  to  direct  them to sit and study. In the evenings,we used to sit in the living room reading  some book or the news paper. An atmosphere  of studying  was created.The children  too would sit and  read their school books. So without coaxing them to sit and study, a natural  method was evolved. Due to regularity in studying  both of them did very well in school. At the age  of adolescence  we  noticed the change in their  behaviour. This is the most delicate stage  when the child himself fails to understand what is happening to him.  At this stage care  should  be taken  to ensure that parents are soft and considerate  towards the children. Aggressive and autocratic  attitude should be  eschewed.

When sonny  reached  class ix every one advised us that he should take Science stream.We knew that he was not performing well in Physics and in his interest guided him to opt  for Commerce Stream. We did not force him  but  left the decision  to  him. It was he who finally decided to opt for Commerce stream.  Right from the time when they were small  they used  to  talk about their ambitions. Our daughter wanted  to  become a Doctor and the  son had  a wish to be a Chartered Accountant. Since they were very focused,they achieved their  goal.

Now our children have  children. I have noticed that  grand children are being brought up   on the same principles.As good governance is least governance, good parenting is least interference.I conclude with  the  following quotation  from Franklin D. Roosevelt. " We may not be able to prepare the future for our children,but we can at least prepare our children for the future."








Sunday, 25 November 2012

Memories of a bygone era

ow are  the photographs which triggered my memory.


  2009                                  1959


            Am I dreaming?   Without any provocation I drifted into the past. The pastwhichSomebody has rightly said that Love is a many splendoured thing. How true!! Speaking about Love, memories come gushing one by one into my mind.  It is all about love,  the love which  is  true, which has all the passion, which has the capability of transforming lives and which makes you feel  elated and thrilled. One moment you are alone, but the next moment when this love mania emancipates, you are not what you hitherto used to be!  Your thoughts, your feelings  and your emotions all are focused on one person, who has the capacity to change your persona without your being conscious of it. 

Given bel has all these years  been  hidden in  the womb  of     time  and which has now  surfaced  on the uppermost layer of my head and heart!! It has shaken me from my slumber and placed me gently into the lap of those days when love struck me!! It all happened fifty three years ago. Yes fifty three years have gone by since I married the man of my dreams. Fifty three years is not a short period. But both of us feel that all this happened only very recently!  The love which reigned   upon both of us culminated in uniting us forever!  Ours was a love   marriage. My memory is still fresh from the past. How in spite of obstacles everything fell into place. The one and only obstacle which came our way was   “ a  Punjabi girl marrying a Kerala boy”.(I am from Punjab and my husband is a Keralite.) My father, though he was very liberal, asked me several times how I would  adjust  my food  habits, language etc. Similarly, my husband’s family was apprehensive of his marrying a girl whose parents were settled far away.

 True love is always victorious. So was ours!! All this happened more than fifty years ago, when the society was not so progressive and was reluctant to approve of such alliances. Even though the marriage took place in Delhi, it had its impact in Kerala. We were told that some Kerala news papers splashed the news of our marriage. All these incidents took place more than half a century   ago but are etched in my memory very vividly.

  Fifty three years of married life have  passed away as a reel of a movie. We have enjoyed and shared all good things together in our journey through life. Adversities never shook us as our love for each other stood like a rock. We had our share of differences but our love for each other was strong enough to tide over all such situations.

      We have two children and four grand children.  Due to God’s grace they are very loving and caring. On our golden jubilee anniversary, they arranged a gala surprise party in our honor which had all the trappings of a real wedding.

  We have left behind a joyous and perilous road and have reached the evening of our lives. We are still very warm and care for each other. We are thankful to BlogAdda  for helping us to revive our old but golden memories. Amen!!


 "">Write Over the Weekend Golden memories of a bygone era- an initiative for"Indian Bloggers"











Friday, 23 November 2012

Attraction of Grandchildren

Grand children! How much do we love you!! Grand children you are  the flesh of our flesh and soul  of our soul. When our first grand daughter was born , and I enfolded her in my arms, it gave me a feeling that I was transported  to another world.The ecstasy of that moment cannot be described in words.It is etched deep into the portals of my heart. Wow, I  had become  the mother of her mother. It is a different matter that she is in her early  twenties now. This experience  will  for ever  remain fresh in my mind. Afterwards  we were blessed by three more grand children. All the  four are darlings. They have filled  the space in  the hearts of their grand parents , which we never knew was empty. All four are  God's  gift to us. Whosoever  coined the the word grand child,deserves an applause, because  they are really grand. 

Today  I am in a reminiscent mood. Flashes of the days gone by are vividly  appearing in front of my eyes.I am dreaming with my eyes  open. Incidents are coming  to the fore which are not in chronological order.  There she is, our elder grand daughter ( I will refer to her as Doll in this article). She was  real sweetie pie. Even her naughty pranks  did not irritate  us. In fact we used to  be tickled by her mischiefs.She  too knew that we were amused. She  loved to throw things...... I remember that the sofa cushions  seemed to be  an eye sore to this Doll. During the day the elders would keep the cushions in their  proper  place and next time you enter the room the cushions would be  on the floor.This sequence used to continue the whole day. She also was an expert  in removing clothes from the wardrobe. Her mother would  arrange the garments and the daughter  would pull them out  and  scatter  them , all crushed  on the floor.This little Doll grew up to become a very  responsible  and meticulous  young maiden,who can manage her things  in a responsible manner. My younger grand daughter,(she  will be referred  as a Princess) grew up in the shadow of her elder sister.It is natural that she has acquired  the likes and dislikes of her sister.Both sisters are  fond of Dancing.They  learnt dancing   when they were hardly  three years old.They  have performed  at school and college level  functions. The Princess  is  very much concerned about the welfare of the family.Both  girls are our son's daughters. They love fast music..I am playing two songs which I presume they will like.The first one is We Are Young and the other one is a remix version  of Hawa Hawai.



  The other  two  grand children are the sons of our daughter.We will refer to the elder one a as Prince and the younger one as Smartu.The Prince is going to become a Doctor in a couple of months. From  his looks he  is  innocent but appearances are deceptive.  He is  a boy with a strong will  and determination and is blessed with  great  self confidence.  He has strong likes and dislikes. He is very fond of listening to old Hindi movie songs. Quiz competitions are his forte. Right from his early school days there was hardly a quiz competition in which he did not get a prize.  The younger one Smartu is actually  a smart boy. He is  a happy go lucky  child, but at the same time very sharp and  intelligent. He is a  connoisseur  of   guitar. Whereever he goes his guitar  accompanies   him.He is  also a connoisseur  of  good food. He likes to listen to Rock music  and also  sings rock music with  great enthusiasm. I present the following  songs  for the boys and their parents to enjoy.








Videos courtesy You Tube

Thursday, 22 November 2012

Devotional Music in Hindi Movies

  Devotional songs have always found a place of pride in  movies made in our country but  have been  successful  even several years  after their release.

     There was a movie., Do Ankhen Barah Haath directed by V Shantaram, in which a very popular devotional   song  was  the main attraction of the film.

This song  is an all time   favourite  with young  and  old alike. It was adopted by many Schools , to be the part of  the school assembly. 

The next  devotional song which I am  posting  here is from the movie Baiju Bawra,sung by Mohd. Rafi. The song is so moving that it  is capable of touching the  very chords of  the  heart of the listener. This song is based  on Hindustani Classical music.



There is another  song  which is fresh in memory.  It is from the film Geet Gaata Chal and based on the  lines from  Ram  Charit Manas . I feel this  song  will be appreciated .


The Bhajan which became very popular is from the movie Ankush.This song also has found a place  in many  schools'  morning assembly. The music is haunting and the words are inspiring.

There was an old movie starring Dev Anand ,Sadhana and Nanda. .They were the top stars in those days..The song was very appealing and  became  very successful.The name of the movie was Hum Dono.

The last song that I am including here is  from the film Hari Darshan.It  is the chanting of  the Lord's name.
I  have written this post to revive the memory of  some  devotional songs. 
Source courtesy :You Tube


Monday, 19 November 2012

Quick and easy recipes.from my Kitchen

Many times it happens that when I am preparing something my grand daughters want me to leave as they want to make. I cannot  but bend down to their wishes.In my heart of   hearts I pray that things should  go right.   They are always confident that they can manage on their own. They handle the job dexterously, which makes me wonder how and when did they acquire the expertise!! Both of them enjoy cooking   dishes that they relish. The  dishes  that they handle are noodles, pasta, eggs , sandwiches and cakes. The most important thing is that  they have  been  trained to prepare it  in a simple method. I am giving below a cake recipe.


1.All purpose flour  One cup

2.Sugar     3/4th of a cup

3.Curd      3/4th of cup

4.Cooking oil  3/4th of a cup

5. Baking powder  1 tsp

6. Cooking soda  1/2 tsp

7.Vanilla essence 1/2 tsp

8.Cocoa powder  3/4 cup

Method of preparation

1st step    Preheat the oven

2nd step    Put all the articles in a  blender and  switch it on for  10  to 15                     minutes   till   all the ingredients are  well blended. the paste should  neither be very thick  nor very thin. (If it very thick add add 4 to 5  spoons of milk.If you find it too thin add little  cocoa powder.)

3rd step   Grease the cake dish  with a  pinch of oil.  Now put the paste in the baking dish  and  keep the dish   inside the oven.

4th step   Bake the cake for 20 to 25 minutes  at 180 o ' Fahrenheit temperature.

5th  step  Allow it to cool  down. Now invert it  on to a plate. Your cake is ready to eat.  You will  enjoy the delicious  sooofffftttt  cake. Do not forget to  tell every body  who takes a piece  that the cake has been prepared  by your daughter.

Recipe for Sandwich

      Children  love  to eat  sandwiches . They are light and easy  on the stomach.  When  I first made   these sandwiches, all those who ate them  were full of praise for them . My grand daughters named them  'Dadi Special Sandwiches.'   Very often the children  take  sandwiches to  School/College. In no time the  demand for the  sandwiches increased.Whenever there is a function or a party in their institution the demand  increases.They will just say 'Dadi, give  forty sandwiches  for tomorrow'.I do not mind preparing any number  of sandwiches for them. in fact,  I love to prepare  any thing for the children and the family. Now both of them have also started   preparing  sandwiches.I am sure that once the children taste the sandwiches they  will want to prepare them.


1.  Bread slices   8

2  .Hung curd    4tbsp

3.  Egg less mayonnaise  3 tbsp

 4. Cheese  spread   2tsp

5  Tomato sauce    1 tbsp

6   Mustard sauce  1/4 tsp

7.   Olive oil             1 tsp

8.   Salt   to taste

9.   Pepper powder  1 pinch

10.  Grated  and well squeezed vegetables     4 tbs

(Carrot, Bell pepper, Cabbage,

and Cucumber) 


Step 1.          Cut the sides of the slices. 

 Step 2.         In a  bowl put all the ingredients except the grated  vegetables. 

 Step3.          Mix  well so that everything is  blended together  finely. 

  Step4.          Now add the vegetables  and mix well.

Step 5.            Spread the paste on the slices.

 Step 6.          Cut the sandwiches in any desired shape. Serve.

Step  7.           The sandwiches can also be grilled.

 Both  these two recipes  can very well be handled by children, as they do not require  any cooking on the fire. I am sure that the children will love them. 





Friday, 16 November 2012

A journey through life.

A journey through life

                                                                                                     If    you  are a parent   you must have  noticed and experienced   the behaviour pattern  of  your children  at every stage of their  growing up. The evolution from a toddler to  a teenager  to old age  is wrought with  adventures  and misadventures. At every stage of a man’s life there are  significant  as well as insignificant  happenings some of which  are carried over from child hood,  when we are growingtill we reach a stage when we have  one leg in the grave.   This growing  old is  an inevitable  changeThe cycle of life goes on rotating  irrespective of the fact whether  you like it or not.

  At different stages of life  we   react to  the changes  as is warranted by nature.  Nobody teaches us  what to do or how to do .  The transition  is natural. For example when I was small every body called me ‘ baby’,after a few years I became a ‘didi’.  As the years  passed  by  I acquired  the status of a  ‘bhabi’, ‘mausi’  or ‘aunty’.The   wheel  of life keeps moving. Suddenly  I am transformed  to the status of a ‘madam’.This   continued for fairly  long time when  I become ‘mataji’ and  now ‘dadi’.No one can change the direction of this wheel of life.It moves  at its own  pace.

   At all stages of life we  act and react differently. No one gives you any sermons  of acting according to the age you attain.  A small child , hardly a few months old, knows that by crying  he will get milk.  Hence  he  adopts this method. As the child  grows  older he  devices his  own ways and means to achieve whatever he wants. A common and most effective  method which the children adopt at this  stage of life is  to  add  their  teacher's  name  to  the request. The children are very smart. They very well understand the pulse of their  parents. Sometimes they take the advantage of their parents’ ignorance. Once a boy  demanded money from  his  illiterate father for purchasing a ‘time table ‘ book.  At a later date the poor father,  on his visit to the school, complained that  he was  spending  a lot of money  on the son’s education. He specifically mentioned expenditure  on time table book, which was amusing  to the teachers.

 When the children enter their teens their  demands and their requirements too undergo a sea change. They are at a stage of life when they are confused. The child is  at the cross roads.He seems to be a misfit. Among adults  he is considered to be a child  and  in the company of children he is  termed  a bully. This is a testing time for the parents too.The famous story of Rabindra Nath Tagore has very vividly  described the mental state of an adolescent boy and the inability of a widowed mother  to handle this child! This the stage of life when the parent can  make a child a friend for life or  create a distance  between  him  and  the child  for ever.I quote a few sentences from the story which depict the  transition from childhood to  adolescence."It is impossible to shower  affection on him as on a little boy; and he is always getting in the way.If he talks with a childish lisp he is called a baby, and if he answers in a grown-up way  he is called impertinent.In fact any talk from him is resented. Then he is at the unattractive growing  age.” The parents should be considerate and have a  friendly and  positive approach towards the child at this stage. The child must feel that  he is ‘wanted’. Once this barrier  is crossed the real personality of the child comes  to the fore.  The children then reach an age when they can take  their own decisions.  They attain  maturity and are capable  of  facing the  atrocities and  challenges of  the  society. They are thus  mature enough to bring up a family.

There is a story going round  which narrates the various stages of life in a  humorous but   brutal way. This is how  the story goes.  Inside the four walls of an office  lunch hour  discussionare a regular feature.   They often discuss  how they managed to get the job  they were holding. Within a  lapse of  four to five  years the  topic for discussion is  about interviews , which their children  have to face in various schools .  With the passage of time  the conversations are turned towards   their own promotions . Who got the promotion,  who was overlooked and so on.  As they grow older they  seek information about  the marriage of  their children and where did they settle down.  Slowly but surely  the  topic  changes  to their own retirement,  enquiring who  has settled down and where. Now comes the age of sufferings and our  friends whenever they meet  discuss  their mutual  afflictions and ailments.  The next time they meet  they  discuss who  among their  friends or colleagues  have  slept in  eternal sleep. Thus goes on  life!!  Human nature being the same, generation after generation  the same story of life is repeated. The venue and theme of the story remains  the same!  Only the characters change!!