A Quest on Overdrive … :)

An eccentric rambler on life's lessons and mercies, found and lost… :)


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Starlit Days!

The best part of the year gone by was the time with Family. The time with a certain family, really, watching Modern Family! I still crack up thinking of the many evenings, or lunch times, we shared with those three families, the threes of us, and Bowie looking quizzically at us. So, today, I cannot think of a better way to say it, than the words of Manny Delgado (while initially I thought he was rather too much of a whiny nerd, the seasons, as they happened, made him personable and even adorable!) And his mother, the drop-dead gorgeous and very very fierce and real mother, Gloria! But yes, I love all the others too! (That’s enough digression, but before I stop, just a word: If you have not watched Modern Family, please do?)

So there I was for most part of the first half of 2020 with both of them and their fur baby, with the next baby on his way! I should have been there to welcome him, along with his parents, but the Vande Bharat Mission rescued a person, unwilling to return, and so, the remaining part of the year was spent with the rest of the family, back here!

Their days, were now lit by a Star, a Sun of their own, Dhruv. Neeti and Ashwin and Bowie and Dhruv, which the quintessential joke maker of our family, as a whole has captured in the acronym BAND family – Neeti and the BAD bois – that is him, my second born, Ashwin, talking of Neeti his partner, and B and D their bois!

These words below, from Season 8, of Modern Family, I think, when the season for me, was maturing like fine wine, says a lot of what you mean, to me, and as I see it, what you mean to each other 🙂

“What qualifies someone as a hero? Obviously, a hero has to be someone we respect. A person we look up to. A person who is generous of spirit. Who’s willing to grow and learn. Maybe it’s the person you love most in the world. Or the guy who makes he most out of life no matter what anyone thinks. For me though, the hero of my family is my family, because of who we are together.” – Manny Delgado 

 “It’s scary to let people see the real you, even when these people are your own family. But aren’t they the ones we should be least worried about? The ones who will love us without judging, who forgive our faults and celebrate our imperfections, maybe even encourage us to let our true selves shine through.” – Gloria Pritchett

I cannot think of better heroes, than you both, Neeti and Ashwin, in a world unravelling, you have woven a fine, beautiful tapestry (sleep deprived as heck, of course! 😛 ) that shines, for us to see!

Today it will have been eight years to their wedding day, and an aeon more of love. I cannot better express myself that I have over the ways in which both Maney and Gloria have, above!

Your resilience, your partnership, the buoyant love, the utter faith in one another, the way you second guess each other, and have each others’ backs! The laughter, the tears, on occasion, the giggles, the smiles, the way Dhruv and Bowie adore you, all the more, and the adoration of each other. Sigh.

To the most beautiful of partners, Neeti and Ashwin! Happy 8, me dearest darling bacchas!

May these starlit days continue to comfort and and wrap you all in the indefinable warmth and glow of love.

May the Sun shine bright upon you two, and cool wins blow the blues away!

May rainbows crown each little storm that you revel in

May blessings pour, unabated, and fill and flood your lives, ever…

May you be happy, healthy, and always as in love

All my love.

Amma.

For 14 January 2021

Over the years, this blog has celebrated them, in the links given below 🙂

(2020 got a miss! Given what the year turned out to be, it seems as if my not posting something is in keeping with the kinds of things the year threw at us! 😀 )

2019

2018

2017

2016 

2015

2014


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Achcha, Bahut Achcha!!

Glossary:

Achcha, in Hindi: Good; Bahut: very, extremely

Achchain  Malayalam:  Father ❤

If you’re a regular here, part of that infinitesimal number, because I need to be a better host 😛 , you know by now where we are heading. This time, too, you are important, almost as important to the Bahut Achcha Achcha that this blog celebrates 🙂

My lion cub (indeed I do refer to him as such, even now, though he is a puli – lion – through and through!) now has cubs of his own, and there is no greater sight than that of him and his partner with their cubs 🙂 Cubs, plural, you ask? Yep, that’s how the ball rolls in our family. Offspring are just so, be it the fur kind, or the human kind 🙂 Between his last birthday to this one, he and his lovely partner have two! Achcha, bahut Achcha!! 🙂 I know you know that is as cheesy as it gets, but that’s the way this blog works. Cheesier the better, for us, all around 😛

Today is his day – 3 August; the Blog Tradition here is one that has survived, amongst many troubles this year, and as with my other bachchus, this one now takes its due place here! And how! From being the Ammakutty, and never smiling as an infant, never being comfortable with anyone other than the closest family, he’s a metaphor for all things joyful, funny, friendly and out and out helpful! Also, he is now a parent.

People speak, and share, all the time, of how being a parent shall not change who they are, deep inside, and maybe it is true to a certain extent – but parenting as such brings out the best resourceful YOU, IMHO. Most often, young parents (especially the Indian variety 😛 ) have the support of extended family during that time – a bit before the arrival of the wee one to a lot later. This year has been a roller coaster that isn’t giving up giving us a ride we never asked for. But, we are on it, and ride we must, isn’t it? And so it came to be that they welcomed Dhruv into our Love, without the least hesitation of going it by themselves, since help from extended family was hindered by the pandemic! So helpless,were we, yet prouder than even at how these two young parents did a beautiful job of it! Each day is a blessing, to be taken one at a time, is it not? I have learned so much of that, from both of you, Ash and Neets ❤

When Bowie, the first baby arrived, in October, last year, the excitement was so palpable – daily stories, the cutest videos of this entirely adorable pupper and them two parents! A few months down to June, 2020, Bowie is now the Elder, with a wee one to join him – Dhruv! Their Achcha and their Amma be the best too! Today, watching them all while virtually cutting the cake, I could not help but wish I could hold them all in this ginormous squishy hug! Dhruv, with his cooing and wee smiles, Ash and Neeti looking so good together 🙂 Bowie wasn’t there, unfortunately, but we’ll catch up with him in the evening 🙂

 

 

Ashwin, my dearest Chots, you are wished dearly and infinitely, this day – you are blessed, you are cherished and loved, loved so very much! Please know that, every single moment, even if sometimes I forget to tell you so 🙂 These be my wishes, dearest dearest Chotu

For every cloud that that blankets you, I’ll pray for cleansing rain, dissolving your nuggets of pain, bit by tiny bit, so that all that’s left is you, your love and sweetness and the falling rain…

For every moonbeam that reaches down to you, that you cannot see, I’ll wish it ribbon-like, to trail and wind about you, unravelling the magic that never leaves…

And when you ask, without them pesky words, I’ll simply point to the stars, in the darkest darkness, and tell you, that the fire there, is never distant; That’s what I carry as benediction, as faith, as a constant unfailing reminder… Of love, maybe unexpressed, but ever enveloping.

Happy birthday, ende chotukkutta ❤ you Daddy Cool!!

3 August, 2020, the redefining year 🙂

The Years, Before, the Blog Tradition held these:

A few footnotes ( from the previous year’s blog!):

This one from here in 2012, and damn, that is what, 8 years back?! Woah. I am rather proud of myself, and will not hesitate to say it, today, for me

Right, before I go ga ga all over again, over my Lion Cub, I do want to share those “traditions” 😀 . It started in 2009, with“The Right Age”, the went on to “For My Little One” (incidentally he’s a few millimetres short of being 6 ft tall   ), to when he flew the coop, in “When Nestlings Fly”, and Metamorphosis and settled in with “Pride”  in 2010 and 2011, last year. And here is where he tells me it’s no fun doing something unless your mom says NO. So it is 3 August again, and, as my kids in school say, “his happy birthday”!

Earlier (and later )Blog Tradition blogs for Ashwin, each year, are here – Click on the year to be taken to that blog 🙂

2009   2010 2011   2012  2013  2014  2015   2016  2017  2018, 2019

 

 


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“Prime” Time

The blog titles here are totally inspired. In the cheesiest, wackiest, and unapologetically clickbaity ways. Dang it, I need readers, more than any of those online pages that anyway we’ll ALL visit, however blatantly or clandestinely 😛

In my defence, I must say that this title is about the Prime time of a well beloved offspring. If you’re new here, may I suggest that you read on? If you can’t go on with only so much, it’s perfectly okay to take a rain check. 😀 And regulars here,  the countables-on, I know they shall read and be kind. But, errr, let’s not dawdle, shall we? 😛

He was a you-may-not-even-LOOK-at-me baby, for what seemed the longest time, for Us. His parents, brother, a couple of his grandparents, of the full set he had, a couple of others he considered “friendlies” (I’m totally into the Designated Survivor series on Netflix, so you’ll have to put up with clichéd language here 😛 ), a baby that people so wanted to carry and cuddle, but one who would not co-operate with wishes. No Sireee! And then, somewhere round his 4th birthday or so, he decided to take charge and begin his journey as that cub who would take his Designated Place in the Social Jungle 😛 I can’t help it, the Designated thingy is overwhelming, and I’m glad I got that title already put there, or else even that would have Designated as part of it – who knows it still might infiltrate 😀 )

From that gwumpy baby to the young man he became through his high school and senior classes there, to being called “Smiling baby” (as a Senior in school, by one of my dearest colleagues there!) – it’s a classic textbook organic growth of a personality, and even today leaves me open-mouthed in admiration. (Yep, I’m like that – I like to look at my offspring and wonder where the heck they got that chutzpah!) I know, I know, I’ve kind of gone overboard before, about this one, (and the other one 😀 ), but I can never do that enough. That’s why we’re here again today. Kind of the day that his mother gets her blog back, and the words from the muse spring, that has been running dry for the longest time. Talking of him (and the Sun Child ) always makes me happy, and proud, for they’ve beaten those paths that they lead right now. Every single step. I’m merely their loudest cheerleader, with a free-style dance that no one would / could follow, or maybe even approve – you know, that balter- sidestep I do 😛

Happy birthday Ashwin!

Today he’s celebrating his birthday – in his happy place. Literally. A place he and his lovely partner aspired to, dreamt of, and worked to build. No one could be gladder that I, (except them, no one – we could have duels on it, and I will fight tooth – the few I have – nail – fast growing ones I have – and hair, the 5,689 strands I have! 😀 ) – but then today, I do not want to fight. For goodness sake, it’s the weekend, I’ve had a long week, and a longer one to come, and this is my window of peace! But yes, I’m his biggest fan, maybe I’ll share that with his partner Neeti, wonly, and maybe one more person, but that is it!

Ashwin, my Little One, you make me laugh every single day. You make me cry too, a lot, with the generosity of your words, your love, your unputdownable wacky witty jokes, with all that love that burgeons in my heart for you. You are precious, you are light and love, personified. I cannot begin to tell you of how PROUD I’ve been each step of the way you’ve journeyed, to this moment. And how, no matter what, I ALWAYS WILL BE.

Cannot sing this enough, for you – “You raise me up” in the soulful voice of Josh Groban.

Gosh. I do love you so. Happy birthday, Chots. Prayers and blessings, for today.

May the odds be ever in your favour.

3 August, 2019

Earlier, on this blog, for him, celebrating his birthday:

A few footnotes ( from the previous year’s blog!):

This one from here in 2012, and damn, that is what, 6 years back?! Woah. I am rather proud of myself, and will not hesitate to say it, today, for me

Right, before I go ga ga all over again, over my Lion Cub, I do want to share those “traditions” 😀 . It started in 2009, with“The Right Age”, the went on to “For My Little One” (incidentally he’s a few millimetres short of being 6 ft tall   ), to when he flew the coop, in “When Nestlings Fly”, and Metamorphosis and settled in with “Pride”  in 2010 and 2011, last year. And here is where he tells me it’s no fun doing something unless your mom says NO. So it is 3 August again, and, as my kids in school say, “his happy birthday”!

Earlier (and later )Blog Tradition blogs for Ashwin, each year, are here – Click on the year to be taken to that blog 🙂

2009   2010 2011   2012  2013  2014  2015   2016  2017  2018


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Dreamer-Doers

For the longest time, with this new-blog-post box open, my fingers hovered over the keyboard, the cursor blinking away inside the (new editor-layout-er, so says WP 😛 ) title box, what I would key in, and let the blog write itself. I kid you not. I obsess blog post titles, and when that title just has to come write itself, it does. I really really kid you not 😀 . When that time is right (Naadodikkattu dialogue alert – Vijayan and Dasan 😛  ) it happens, as it has today. 

This blog is part of my blog tradition, one that almost took a bashing along with a whole host of others in my wee state – but luckily it has survived, being one that actually sustains love and empowers both writer and reader to be able take more and more verbiage 😀 It all about the Family, in this one, and a special two, who, being the more practical of the lot of us, are also the Dreamer-Doer-Duo 😛 *The blogger-rambler-proud-momma pats herself on the back at the alliterative hyphenated title for them* Tee heeee 😀 

Last year they received a Five Star rating, which has risen beyond our own, heck, their own expectations! Families always expect na? We, in ours, actually did not. But then, remember what the title says Doers. That’s them. Planning, getting organized, implementing. After the dream is carefully nurtured. It’s a tough act to follow, you can bet! Nearly two hundred and fifty words on and we’re still dealing with chaff! Where’s the grain, you ask? Ahem, drum roll and all that jazz – here they are, them two 🙂 

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Ashwin, my second born, and Neeti my DIL, over the past six years ❤ 

They have been a very hatke couple, right from the word go 🙂 In these times where young people prefer to wait and watch and take it from there, to wherever, they’ve been absolutely sure of what they wanted. To be partners in every sense of the word, respecting the institution of marriage, and going right ahead, with the blessings of both families. This was six years ago… 

And each new moment, no matter what the quantity, they’ve given it their all and made it worth it, to a point where, when I listen to them speak of how things are and what is happening with them, expanding their horizons, taking up new challenges, with ease and grace, I’m not just amazed, but at times stupefied by the flow of their thoughts, their plans, their comfort being who they are! Most especially, when my son explained how he was thinking of upping his expectations, moving on to a different work place, and the reason he gave while talking to his team members and his superiors… Was this the same rather hot-headed young man I’ve watched grow up, I wondered…. And still I listened, and still the wonder grew that my wee brat had started ‘adulting’ in ways I’m still groping with and trying to figure out. What he said echoed something I read from Trevor Noah, in his book “Born a Crime” – Ash mentioned that he did not want to forgo any other experience and then wonder “What If I’d tried that” – to leave no room for regret for not trying that too! Goodness me, I wondered! And was filled with pride, not because I had in some way helped him to realize that, OH NO!! – but because he had figured it out all by himself (and with his partner, Neeti, of course 😀 ) and more importantly, he managed to articulate it with the comfort of a person who’s been doing this forever! Heck! Dang! Oh Boy!!! Yep! Nothing from me, and he rocks it! As does Neeti, who, dreamer, doer, executor of ideas, and promoter of positive ways to deal with anything life throws at you, who totaaaallllly rocks all de way!!

The regulars here (whaaat? regular? errrr…. 😛 ) know they live in the Land Down Under, and so I must beg your indulgence while I go on show-off-ing some more, by telling you how they have been figuring all this out, digging their heels in, but working out ways and managing all of them ups and downs by themselves, while I wax poetic about them from a gazillion miles away! 

They are 6, together, today and I knew, just this moment, JUST THIS VERY MOMENT, typing these words, this paragraph, that this is the perfect PERFECT song for you two, you two to each other too! 

Happy Anniversary, my dearest darling bachchas, Ash and Neeti, #NeeAsh, as Arjun has coined 😛 

Our prayers, wishes, and all our love for a happening year ahead, when dreams unfurl into the most fragrant blossoms, when plans build themselves into niches where you rest a while, find a new dream… May the light of all your brilliant dreams light the way as you do what you do, one step, one light frisky dance step, a twirl, a pointe, a dervish of desires… however you dance to those dreams, may you hold each one of those dreams, and each other in the spiral of togethernesses, bound by the softest and yet the strongest colours of Love!

I just discovered Zachary Levi, thanks to a friend on Facebook, where I had spoken of how I’m in love with The Marvellous Mrs. Maisel, who shared another song of his (I’ll add it later, just for entertainment 😀 ), and I discover that he’s the Flynn Ryder of “Tangled”! How … apt! Serendipity, nothing less! ❤

 

One more song, and I’ll make an exit, well within 1000 words! Surprise, surprise… and I thought I’d have less than a hundred 😛

I lubb ya both, with all my heart! Waiting to meet you both to give you the biggest hug ever! Mwwaaaaaah!!!!

14 January, 2019 (Again, the first blog post of this year! 🙂 )

Over the years, this blog has celebrated them, in the links given below 🙂 Click on the year and be taken to that year 🙂

2018

2017

2016 

2015

2014

 

 

 


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Diggin’ Life

… I know he is. Where he is, and with the unputdownable, never-say-die attitude that has always been his USP. So, that’s a typical lion for you. My Cub-no-longer-Lion 😀 who’s at another threshold where he’s growing young as ever, though sometimes I do wonder who the parent is, between him and I 🙂 Told ya! There are several psychologists who seem to proclaim that thirty is NOT the new TWENTY, and while all those touching thirty have that urge to reassure themselves that this is just a number, to this one, I have in the family, it just doesn’t matter. 🙂

He’ll always remain who he is, to us, to each of us. Chotu, Kunjunni, Chots…. even to Naina, who calls him Chotu 😛 That’s because parent or no that he is most times, these days, to me, he’ll always be that little, energetic, enthusiastic Kid, to all of us. Of the Fantastic Foursome, (LINK)  he’s the youngest, maybe, by a couple of months to the one just older to him, but we have never let that fool us 😛 He’s an out and out LEO, for goodness’ sake!

When there are two/more Leos in a family, closely connected, sparks fly, tempers are tested, and bit of fur, metaphorically speaking, flies 🙂 That’s how it has been with him and I; strange though, that it has NOT been so, with him and his darling cousin (also a Leo, duh!) – but then you know how it is, exceptions and all that jazz… 😀

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Circa 2016, Achu and Kartika’s Kalyanam Purappaad 😛

(Stopped, perforce, on the morning of 3 August, due to power outage, depleted battery of the inverter, travel plans to Ezhimala, rushing from school to railway station, and lack of connectivity via computer at Ez.; also the company of grandotties don’t leave you time with anything other than being totally into play and joy 😛 Chots I know it’s going to be difficult to get that, but then there it is, my sincere apologies, for not being able to post this earlier 😀 Lubbbb ya, the most, you know that no? Pssst, don’t tell Naina 😛 ❤ ❤ ❤ )

Second Part, on 7 August, 2018 (my own pirannaal – പിറന്നാൾ – my ‘star’ birthday, so it is my gift, to me, as well ❤ )

I woke, a tad late, this morning, it being a holiday, to the music of the rain, the endless rain, and Ammini purring away by my side, gently digging her claws in, to remind me I’m late, with her breakfast 😀 Then my mother calls – Happy Perannaal, she says 😛 Felt good, that 🙂 Only she would remember, I thought 🙂 That’s what moms are all about, na? 

Like this one, who didn’t forget, though her time management skills are all awry, and she simply got late with it! She needs to revise hthe lessons her younger DIL gave her on incentivizing 😀 That loverrrly lass, who’s this Lion’s Keeper, pun entirely intended, gives the best lessons there are!

Back to this one 🙂 The one whose mane is glorious, especially when he needs a haircut, whose sensibilities and sensitivities are sharp, who’s as goofy and idiotic, as he’s mature and proactive 😀 Who knows how it is, with each person he meets, but knows too, how to go about using what he knows, when, and where 😀 That’s a lot of people skills, no? From a shy, overwhelmingly shy baby to one who is so comfortable with any and every kind of people, that is frikking huge, for me, as his rather once-upon-a-time-anxious mom 😀 The anxiety still remains, as it always will for us Indian Moms, but I know it has been tempered with the knowledge that he’s in a good place, and is diggin’ life, like literally and figuratively 😛 That is a private joke, between, Neeti and Chots and I 😀

Across the seas, and lands and latitudes that separate us into different hemispheres, I find we’re even closer than ever, not just because of technology at our fingertips, but because we’ve both grown each other up! I know he’ll always worry about me, as I do, about him and N., but then that’s a given, when you have a heart full of love, for someone, no? And so, this day, my pirannaal – പിറന്നാൾ, and this blog for his birthday/pirannaal – പിറന്നാൾ (interestingly for him, both the days came together on 3 August, his birthday! ) – let me just tell you once more, my wee cub, Chots, just how precious you are ….

We second borns are rather insecure, na? I share that too, with you 🙂 – but you are, Oh, you so are, all of my heart and some ❤ While you may now argue that it cannot be possible, considering the N sisters, 😀 , let me also tell you that hearts grow exponentially when there are more people to love, and love is never taken away from one loved one and given to another, instead, there is more love, all around 🙂 Yeah yeah yeah…  I can go on, I know, and we’ll still giggle when you say, ennaalum, you like Arjun more 😛 No comebacks this time, because I know, how it is, and you do too… ❤

Time and time again, you inspire me, do you know that? I talk of you so much, with so much pride, especially when I have to deal with parents who are lost, as far as their beloved kids are concerned. I speak of how you did almost everything by yourself; of how when you do step out of your comfort zone, and are given the support of loved ones, as you have been, nothing is impossible ❤

You motivate; you make me laugh like no one else can; you make me cry too, like no one else can 😛 (remember the WRV story, early this year? You and N really did move me!) ; and most of all, you make me want to be better, to do my own thing, to go out and just live… you show me, each new day, that it can be done!

Happy birthday, Chots! (no belated and all, it’s still 3 August, till the blog is published 😛 ) Thank you, for you – for the aplomb with which you do things, the badass you are, the chunkzz bro, the daredevil, the eggscelent son, the fun person, the gorgeous hunk, invigorating conversationalist you are, jealous sometimes, yes, but even, Kool Kat as well, Loveable Hobbes (you’re CAT today 😛 ), ‘Mazing Natty Osum Person, Questing, Raring to Storm hitherto strong bastions of ne’er Tried Impossibilities, Undulating never, but steady of purpose, Verrryyyy Wallabbbyyyy baby cuteness overloaded, Xtremely Youthful and Zany…. ever! The alphabets, as you can see have worn themselves out, for you, wishing you the very best! Nearly 1400 words of fun, I hope this has been!

I know your year is going to be the best yet! Stay awed by life and love, my darling Chots! I love you.

 

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With his mostest favourite person, I know ❤ N. Ammai ❤

 

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Circa 1991, my fav. pic of them brothers 🙂

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Circa 1993? The mischief grows!!

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Achante Kunjunni, Circa 1988, Delhi

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Cute-Gwumpiness Overload, Circa 1988

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That Fantastic Foursome!

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Nehru Park, that regular visit, with Chitta – My fav. pic of the fantastic foursome!

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Brothers, in all the ways there are.

 

Birthday Tradition Blog for the Second Born, Ashwin, for 3 August, 2018, is up, LATE, for the First Time. The Only Time, is my promise to myself. However, at the same time, I must say that some things just are so, for this, now is my gift to myself, and for him too ❤ That’s just how it is, sometimes ❤

2 August, 3 August, 7 August, 2018, for 3 August, 2018 😛

A few footnotes:

This one from here in 2012, and damn, that is what, 6 years back?! Woah. I am rather proud of myself, and will not hesitate to say it, today, for me 😛

Right, before I go ga ga all over again, over my Lion Cub, I do want to share those “traditions” :D. It started in 2009, with“The Right Age”, the went on to “For My Little One” (incidentally he’s a few millimetres short of being 6 ft tall 😀 😀 ), to when he flew the coop, in “When Nestlings Fly”, and Metamorphosis and settled in with “Pride”  in 2010 and 2011, last year. And here is where he tells me it’s no fun doing something unless your mom says NO. So it is 3 August again, and, as my kids in school say, “his happy birthday”! 😆

Earlier (and later )Blog Tradition blogs for Ashwin, each year, are here 🙂

2009

2010

2011

2012

2013

2014

2015

2016

2017