Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

The Pick Up

A few weeks ago, Summy, Pranav and I drove to the airport to pick up a cousin. I explained to Pranav that we were going to pick up "Atta" (Aunt) at the airport, and then go back home.

He waited patiently and quietly while we found the terminal that she was waiting at, and while she got into the car. On the way back home, he broke his silence and said, "We forgot to pick up Atta.".

"We did pick her up at the airport. She is right here", I pointed. "See?"

"We did not pick her up.", he said. "She got into the car all by herself!"

Counting in Spanish

Dinky has been watching "Go, Diego, Go" on TV everyday. Diego is a little boy who speaks Spanish and English, so Pranav has been learning to count in Spanish.

"Uno, dos, tres, cuatro, cinco, seis, siete, ocho, nueve", he said while I was driving with him in the backseat yesterday. "What comes next, Amma?"

"Diez.", I said.

"Diez. What comes next?"

"Once. What comes next?"

"Doce. What comes next?"

"Trece. What comes next?"

"Catorce. What comes next?"
"Quince", I said, quietly, because I had  reached the limits of my knowledge of Spanish numbers and I knew that I couldn't answer his next question.

"Quince. What comes next?"
"Um, I don't know."

He smiled because he thought it was funny that Amma didn't know her numbers either. So I told him that I would find out the answer for him once we got home.

Of course I forgot to find out once I got home. And Pranav is not the  kind who forgets.

So today we had another conversation in the car. He said, ,"Uno, Dos, Tres, Cuatro, Cinco, Seis, Siete, Ocho, Nueve, what comes next, Amma?" I winced a little because I could see what was coming.


"Right. Diez, Once, Doce, Trece, Catorce, Quince (he really doesn't forget - he remembered the numbers from yesterday). What next?", he said with a mischievous smile.

"I don't know.", I had to say again.

So today, I had to get on the computer and learn some more Spanish numbers. At some point, I am going to be stumped by my children, but I don't want to be stumped before they turn three.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

The Fast Lane

One move and more than six months after my last post:

The last five years have been filled with moving and changing and adapting. We have lived in many hotels and temporary homes. Mostly the children have adapted and settled in happily and quickly to wherever we were. Pranav, especially, seems to take it in stride as we have moved across the globe twice after he was born, the first time when he was four months old. His idea of "home" is not a fixed place, but wherever we happen to be living at that time - "hotel home", "apartment home", "Bangalore home", "Hyderabad home" :)

Pranav has gone from saying "I am a small boy", to absolutely refusing to have his name appear in a sentence including the word "small". For example, if somebody says that he is Summy's little brother, he says, "No, I am a big brother! I am not little.". Occasionally he pushes the truth a little and tries to tell me that he is "grown up" already, while stretching himself to his full height of almost three feet. He equates "cute" with "little", so now I cannot call him my cutie-pie anymore, not without offending him.

He cannot stand admitting that technically, he is still two years old (until January of 2013). He doesn't like "almost three years old" much better either. He has taken to measuring himself by hand and claiming that he is 11 years old because he measured 11 hand-widths. I happened to say to him that he is two but acts like a big boy, and he has latched on to that, and so now this is how old he is: "I am two years old, but I act like a big boy!"

And he does act like a big boy. I think I know him, but every few days he says or does something that catches me by surprise (Summy also still does this to me). Like the other day. He was sitting in his toddler carseat in the backseat of my car, holding his small red toy car in his hand and pretending to drive it around, "Vroom Vroom". Then he said (verbatim): "How old do I have to be before I can drive a real car?"

Monday, March 26, 2012

Coming Clean

Lately, Pranav has been helping me load clothes into the washer, turn it on, and then unload them when they're done. He stands in front of the washing machine, and becomes a watching machine, staring in fascination at the clothes spinning around.

The other day, the washer stopped mid-cycle. There was an error code on its display. I dug out the manual, and looked up the error code. It said little or no water in the inlet pipe.

I stood thinking, not really wanting to call the appliance service, not after the fridge incident (that's another story).

I looked at the inlet pipe to see if there was obvious damage. I followed it to the wall, and saw that it was screwed into the faucet securely. Then I looked at the knob above the faucet.

"Pranav", I said to the little guy who was watching me with curiosity. "Did you touch this knob?".

He grinned wide, as he always does when he knows the answer well. "Yeeeees!", he said happily.

"When?", I said.

"Yesterday!", he said.

"And what did you do with it?"

"I spinned it!"

Ask and ye shall know.

So I "spinned" it back so that the water to the washer was turned on again, and the the washer went on with its job without further complaint.

Friday, February 17, 2012

My Little Yes Man

I had him well trained, until a few weeks ago, to agree with everything that I said.

For instance, I would be talking to Summy or Kiran, and I would turn to Pranav, and say, "Right, Pranav?", and he would say, "Right, Amma."

A few weeks ago, I was telling Summy something, and said, "Right, Pranav?". He looked mischievous and said, "Left, Amma."

Sigh. It had been really nice to have a pint sized person who backed up all that I said.

Now not only has that stopped, but he is telling me what to say. Today, he toddled up to me while mumbling an incoherent question. When he got close, he told me, "Say yes!".

"What to?", I said.

"Just say yes, Amma."

"But what was the question?"

He looked at me like he couldn't see why the question would be relevant. Here he was, simplifying things for me by providing all the answers, and I was just wasting time.

"Can I have a balloon?", he says.

Relieved, I say, "Of course!"

After thinking, I realized that though this seems like an attempt to influence me, it was not.

He already knew that I would not object to his playing with a balloon. So he was not really trying to get me to say yes, but rather, was telling me what he already knew that I would say.

I know this because he sometimes says things like, "Can I pour this glass of water on the floor? Say no."

So he could have just bypassed me and played with his balloon, but he still wants to follow procedure: ask permission, then proceed. So he comes to me, more as a ritual, than on a mission.

This is Pranav all over.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

No Distractions

Today he was throwing a tantrum about pouring juice into a cup "all by himself", when I distracted him by making jokes, tickling him, and so on.

He couldn't help laughing, but he suddenly remembered his tantrum and said, "Don't cheer up me, Amma."

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Gross Misunderstanding

One day, we were in the backseat of the car, and I was busy talking to Summy. Pranav was busy picking pieces of lint and fluff off the seat.

He interrupted to point a small something on his finger at me, and said, "What's this, Amma?".

I said, "Oh, that must be lint, Pranav."

"Here, take it.", he said.

"Just drop it, it's okay", I said.

"Take it.", he insisted.

After he rubbed his finger onto my palm, I looked at my hand, and said, "Where did you get it?".

He answered, "In my nose."

I can still hear Summy squealing "Gross!".

Do Not Say A Word

Pranav was telling me one of his stories, and I kept saying, "Uh huh", or "Okay", now and then.

He paused, and looked at me. "Don't talk, Amma."

"Okay, Pranav", I said.

"I am talking.", he said.

"Okay", I said.

"Don't say okay."


"Don't say Mmmmm."

So I stared at him quietly. He stared back and grinned one of his mischievous grins.

Monday, January 23, 2012

More Sleep Talk

I wouldn't have believed that a two year old would talk this much in his sleep, but I hear him everyday. And it's not unintelligible mumbling, like adults usually do.

Yesterday: "There was one cat outchide; There were two cats outchide; There were three cats outchide; There were four cats outchide;", like he was reciting a book.

Maybe he wakes up a little, talks without opening his eyes, and then falls back asleep.

Welcoming Summy Home

When Summy came home from school this afternoon, her first words were, "Get off the back of that sofa, Pranav. You'll fall down and get a bad boo boo." He ignored her, and she kept telling him to get off.

Finally, he smiled at her and said, "Hi, Akka. Are you home?"

She smiled too, and said, "Hi, Pranav!"

Then she came to me, telling me about her day. Earlier, he would try to get my attention back to him by hanging onto my legs, or whining about something. But today he was direct - he put his outstretched hands on her, and said, "No, Akka! I talk Amma!"

We were both surprised ( and Summy not very pleased) and stared at him in silence. One he got my attention, he actually had nothing to say, so he giggled and ran away back to his Play-Doh.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Oh, Brother!

Pranav has grown stubborn and insists that whatever he says is right. He doesn't like to be corrected.

If he says, "P is for monkey", and I say, "M is for monkey", he insists, "No, P is for Monkey", and repeats it several times, looking mischievously defiant.

The other day, he told me, "You are my brother, Amma.", and before I could deny this, he added, " And I am your sister." I was so surprised, that for a while, I didn't know where to begin.

"Pranav, I am your mother...", I started. "NO!", he said, "You are my brother." He repeated this many times so that I would remember it. I gave up.

That night, he suddenly gave me a hug and said, "I love you, brother." My sister sure is crazy, but I love him too.

I'm sure that all of this comes from Summy trying to explain these relationships to him. Her efforts paid off, he's been calling her "brother" too.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Grime Time

Today Pranav started his afternoon by crawling around on the ground outside our apartments, and rubbing his hands all over it.

When his hands were black to his satisfaction, he found he was thirsty and he asked for a juice box. After a few sips, he wasn't so thirsty anymore, and he squirted juice out of the box all over himself.

He wiped his sticky black hands on his favorite jeans, and proceeded to the playground. There, his sticky shoes filled with sand (so that's why they're called "sand"als?) annoyed him, and he threw them off. He climbed on the equipment and had fun. Soon, his feet matched his hands in blackness.

Then we moved on to the cafe where I fed him French fries. There he dipped his hands into the ketchup, and then into his glass of water.

Finally we came home, and by this time he was more a ball of dirt than a little boy. He left a trail of sand wherever he went. I scrubbed him down from matted hair to blackened toes, and he came out of the bath looking like a little angel, and smelling sweet.

Immediately, he set to work again, "eating" a bowl of yogurt, and in the process, getting it on his hands, hair, and eventually, on his tummy, his legs, his feet, his chair, and the floor, as he toppled his bowl over.

What can I say? I do my job, he does his.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

He is an Girl!

Picks up two pencils, holds them on either side of his head like pony tails, and says, "I am an girl, Amma!".

Monday, January 02, 2012

Sleep talk and Sweet Talk

He keeps talking through the night. I usually don't remember what he said, though I remember it being funny at the time.

Here are a few of the lines that he said out of the blue last night:

"No, that's an Kangaroo!"

"That one is an watermelon."

"The parrot is okay, Amma."

What kangaroo? What watermelon? What parrot?

On a different topic, Pranav has me talking like him now.

"Do you want an banana, Pranav?"

"Please bring me an spoon, Summy."

"Should we stay inchide, or go outchide now?"

"No, not uptairs, Pranav, we are going downtairs."