Friday, August 21, 2009

The School choice ....

Cantaloupe started school this week and suddenly she is all grown in my eyes ! (* wipes tears of pride*)

It has been difficult on Cantaloupe to get adjusted to different schools we have put her in. There were several reasons for continued school / day care changes.
Initially we lived in a different town and after much enquiries found a home day care which we thought suited our requirements at that time. Cantaloupe was about 6 months ... the place was very close to our house and about 5 mins drive from BP's office. Within 2 weeks of her stay there, we realised it didn't work for us. The main reason being, we dropped her as early as 7:00am and picked her by 10:00 am and the day care provider would have just woken up around the time. So we moved Cantaloupe to a private day care institution. It was a Jewish center and teachers were very friendly and my dear daughter had got well adjusted to the place. We simply loved it. We bought a house and had to move cities.
We bought a house in the city where schools were considered "Good". We paid a hefty amount to just get ourselves 2 bed / 2 bath duplex .. reason being good school district. Anyways, we again changed Cantaloupe's day care. She was about a year now. But this time, we were more relaxed about her day care since my cousin provided home day care and she stayed in the same city as ours. Within a day or two Cantaloupe had gotten adjusted to my cousin. There were some older kids already coming there and she made great friends with them.
A year passed and my cousin was scheduled to make her bi-yearly India trip. She'd be gone for 3 months which meant, we had to find alternate day care options. Satisfied with our thorough research, we put Cantaloupe in a homely yet private day care center. Clearly Cantaloupe was not happy here ... she cried her lungs out when we dropped her... would be seated quietly in a corner and we went to pick her up, would hug us just start crying. It was as if she demanded to know why she was being sent to this place. Those tears broke my heart like nothing before and I was hell bent on changing her day care.... though BP thought it was initial periods of adjustment.
I stuck to my inner feelings and moved Cantaloupe to another place ... this time it was slightly further away from our house, but it seemed like a very caring place. There was visibly a large difference in Cantaloupes' moods within the first 2 days of her shifting to this new place. BP and I were greatly relieved ... Cantaloupe now spoke about her friends, her teachers and longed to go to her day care. She was two + now and was communicating very well. The teachers were so friendly, I couldn't have asked for anything more. It worked beautifully for us for the following year ....
And then we debated hard and long and finally decided to move her to one of the best pre-schools in town. Call it first time parents over enthusiasm ... but we did. The first week in this new school was not the best of her days. I had blogged about it here,
In a month's time, Cantaloupe just seem to be having a blast in the school. What was interesting was there were minor complaints about her occasionally about missing her afternoon naps or talking with her friends during circle / story time. But she seem to be one of teacher's favourites :) (The teacher took a break after the academic year ... but didn't miss taking a picture of Cantaloupe before we went) She moved from Pre school to Pre K in the same school.
We started talking to other parents about the advantages / disadvantages of Private / Public school. While it was clear Public schools were not too academic until 5th grade ... private schools which were a lot more like Indian schools with little focus on overall development. (read school I studied meaning "Academic focus") While I was not sure which one I wanted ( my reasoning being school focuses on academics, parents should focus on other activities including sports , music, arts whatever the child be interested in) ... BP was certain in his choice. He wanted "Overall child development" and not necessarily academic progress alone. His view was further validated by kids we saw who went to private and public schools. Of course private schools were a lot more expensive than public schools. (no fees as such, but donating school supplies and raising funds etc does cost) Another important point that BP had was the very reason we had moved to this area that being good schooling district ... so there was no point compromising on real estate and sending kids to Private schools.
So after much debate / discussion, we chose to enroll Cantaloupe in Public school. The public school "assigned" to us happens to be a decent school and is just 2 crosses away from our house. So Cantaloupe has been cycling to school :) (one of my dreams was to have my kids bicycle to school ... thats the way I grew up )
The first 2 days have been good ... the teacher seems efficient and knowledgeable and looks patient enough to deal with kindergartners. Only time will tell if our choice is wise ... till such time wishing Cantaloupe the very best in her new school :)

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Big Day for Me

Cantaloupe started school today ... Big Girl's school ... Kindergarten ... WOW !
I better start accepting her as a Big girl !

Monday, August 17, 2009

How can this be happening?

Junior announces (in fact runs from any corner of the house to find us) and announces "Poo Poo" and then does the act !!
Potty training was never in my mind ... why does this girl remind me of things I am not ready for ?

ps: I thought the first time was a coincidence ... it has happened consistently for the past week ... hmm ... really how can this be happening???

Thursday, August 13, 2009


What is the most dreaded thing for anyone ?
A phone call in the middle of the night ...

And thats what I have received several times ..... and I got one yet again.
The news was the same ... death of a loved one ... this time the person was my cousin.... my doddappa's son.

This is so much unexpected .... I had met him just about 10 days back during my India trip. We had had a good time ... as always he had recollected my toddler days and couldn't believe I was already a mother of two. Oh ... he had so loved the salted cashews I had taken from US.

And now ... he is gone ... just like that ... no sufferings ... no words ... just as he was getting ready to cheer his 9 yr old daughter in her TT match ... gone ! Shocking to say the least.

May his soul rest in peace.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

US - India - US - Vacation updates and more ...

India trip was great ... it wasn't the like any of my earlier visits. This was the first time I was travelling with 2 kids by myself. I dreaded the flight journey ... I had expected the worst... turned out so much better than I had imagined. Infact the journey from here to India was almost uneventful and quite comfortable. It helped that our flight got delayed here in SF. That meant hardly any transit time in Hong Kong. We reached Bengaluru on time. Since I was travelling with my MIL, we had requested wheelchair assistance. So the porters in the Airport took care of our luggage as well. We were also given priority in the "Flu Screening" and Immigration / Customs queue. All our luggage arrived in less than 10 mins ... considering we had checked in 7 suitcases, it was no short of a miracle. In all we were out of the airport in less than 20mins of our flight landing at the airport. Pretty Awesome I thought !

I was visiting India after 4 long years and it felt very surreal to drive from the International Airport to BIL's place. There was hardly any traffic ... the highway was in excellent condition ... the airport itself was amazing ... the gentle breeze at 2:30 am felt very relaxing after our long flight journey.
I chose to spend most of my time in my hometown since my MIL had stayed with us for the past 4 months ... my parents especially my dad who was seeing Junior for the first time since her birth were anxiously waiting for our arrival.
The highlights of my trip were:
* My parents meeting both my kids
* The girls bonding beautifully with grandparents. (Cantaloupe instantly bonded ... junior took some time). I let them have their time and was only too happy to stay in the background and observe their bonding.
* Meeting my grandma for the first time since my grandpa's death last september. I had tossed and turned about my how frail my grandma would be (both mentally and physically). I didn't know how I'd begin to console her of her loss ... in short I didn't know how I would face her ... but she made it very easy on me. Indeed she had become very weak ... she had gained atleast 5 years of age in the last 5 months ... but then her warm presence was still there. Her love and warmth could never be missed. Junior, who had so much stranger anxiety jumped and clapped when we visited my grandma's house. It was as well Junior knew the place all along ... I was almost shocked.
* Seeing all my relatives after a very long time ... most of them had changed / renovated their houses. The family dynamics has changed so much since my last visit ... sigh ! (I am so glad I don't have to deal with trivial family politics on a daily basis )
* Shopping spree took a new meaning in my world ... never in my life have I made so many shopping trips. (note: I made several trips ... not that I shopped a lot ... small things required multiple visits... like the visit to the tailor or the visit to the embroidery lady or the visit to the electrician ... )
* I hogged ... hogged and hogged some more as if I was food deprived. Amma's Thair Vada / Bisi Bele Bhath / Tengolu / Obbattu / Plum Cake GTR Masala Dosa, Raghavendra Bakery Plain Cake , Veggie Puffs and Ajji's Kobbari Mittai still rock ! The new delicacy I tried "Jolada Rotti" is plain yummy !
* We hosted the first ever kids party in India. (Cantaloupes 5th year birthday party was super hit with her ... she met all her cousins and hosted the games) It was a very nice way to meet up a lot of folks whom I would otherwise have never got to visit. (due to lack to time)
* Showed most tourist attractions to Cantaloupe ... only to be disappointed with her constant interest in the snack bag :(
* "Nutty Delight" and "Mango Delight" still are the best "Joy" flavours.

Some of things I never considered before my travel:
* Jet Lag
* Jet Lag
* Jet Lag

Man ... they hit the kids ... and hit me hard. The kids woke up at 2:00am every morning for more than a week of our landing in India and I had to entertain them. Just when they were almost used to IST timings we flew back and had to deal with the same again !!

New challenges await us from next week ... Cantaloupes' school and Junior's day care are the most important ones in the list.

My circle of life with BP, Cantaloupe and Junior and much more | Desenvolvido por EMPORIUM DIGITAL