Jun 30, 2011

When Mom arrived...

Mom has arrived safe and sound. Sorry folks,I have been wanting to share this picture with you but something was wrong with downloading the pictures... Better late than never,right?

What's in my bag?

As if you wondered... I plan on doing this once in a while. Okay here's the deal I need to show you everything inside without 'hiding' anything. This is an attempt to keep it clean...

Jun 24, 2011

Here's the Key!

If you haven't tried your hand at the puzzle, please check it out here. If you have already, please proceed...

Well, I wasn't planning on giving this out that easily but I just couldn't wait!!  So, here we go... please double click the image to get the full view.

These are all wonderful people who bring extra cheer to my days and smiles on my face! Kindly catch up and shake hands if you haven't met already...

Thanks to everyone who participated and apologies to those I missed out, like Deeps, Baili, Bawa etc.  I promise to make it up to you guys one of these days... Have a great weekend!

1. Doctor Couple (THE MATTHEWS)
3. Insists on anonymity (STRANGER)
6. Home making Dentist wonders why (RAJI)
7. He speaks from Patna (IRFAN UDDIN)
12. Brings us interesting newsbits (PETTY WITTER)
13. A cop in London (BIKRAMJIT)
15. I call her Mom (YL)
17. Editor in war against cucumber (RRAMESH)
19. Moments of vanity (TOMZ)
20. Long time no see (BALACHANDRAN V)

2. Brewed daily (COFFEE WITH JESUS)
4. Very handy (MANGALA)
5. Painted house (RACHNA)
8. Dentist in a room (KAVITA)
9. Doctor with a heart (DRANTONY)
10. Looking for red slippers all over Europe (EMILY)
11. Has writer's block, not gardener's block... (JYOTHI)
14. Excels the art of story telling in more than one languages (KPARTHASARATHI)
16. Not a resident (NRIGIRL)
18. Excellent photographer (A SIMPLE BLOGGER)

Jun 23, 2011


If you read NRIGirl regularly or if I read your blogs regularly, then this is for you. I have tried to build a Cross Word puzzle for you (as if I didn't puzzle you enough already...) Can you try and find you atleast if not try to solve all? No, I can't give you the clue also. You should find your own clue and your own you! Please double click to open full view...

Note: Spaces are given a blank space; but periods are not considered. So if you are "The Blogger" you will take 11 boxes counting the blank; however if you are "A.Blogger" your name will be given only 8 boxes, omiting the period.

Let's see how far you get at it. I promise to share the key with you on my next post!

1. Doctor Couple
3. Insists on anonymity
6. Home making Dentist wonders why
7. He speaks from Patna
12. Brings us interesting newsbits
13. A cop in London
15. I call her Mom
17. Editor in war against cucumber
19. Fleeting vanity
20. Long time no see

2. Brewed daily
4. Very handy
5. Painted house
8. Dentist in a room
9. Doctor with a heart
10. Looking for red slippers all over Europe
11. Has writer's block, not gardener's block...
14. Excels the art of story telling in more than one languages
16. Not a resident
18. Not so simple; excellent photographer.

Very handy

What is very handy? How about a hand made, hand picked, hand delivered hand bag?!

Now stop looking at me as if I am speaking Pokie.

Here's the story:
Mom has hand delivered a beautiful hand bag, hand made by none other than our Mangala and hand picked by our one and only Stranger! Wow! Isn't that something? I am truly blessed!

I must say it is a beautiful piece of art and I really like it. Thank you! Thank you! & Thank you! to all three involved.

Here's a picture to share...

Jun 21, 2011

Why burst it before it's time?

! When the frog I had drawn looked so real to me, to Papa it appeared to be pregnant.
! My painted cow didn't appeal to him either as its head was not proportional to its body.
! When my kids try to put in all the details narrating their daily affairs, I am like, "Come to the point; I don't have all the time in the world to listen to the details".
! When I feel so beautiful in a new sari Israel goes with a frown, "Why now sari?"
! Just when I am out and admiring my new hair cut a friend shakes me up, "Did you cut your hair? Man it is too short!"
! And another time with a longer hair another friend frowns, "Oh my! Go for a hair cut! you look awful in it"

What these little snippets have in common are they are all "Bubble busters" though mostly unintentional.

We are all guilty of bursting someone's bubbles and we can all point to different people in our lives who have busted our bubbles different times. Some stay a permanent scar to the point it wets the corners of our eyes to think of that.

Sharon was about three years old when she was running around so happily and almost fell from the top of a bunk bed and I YELLED! She froze! Pop went her bubble. Even to this day (seven years later) she recalls it with the same sadness it caused her then and there.

There are couples who constantly burst each other's bubbles. What do they gain out of it, God only knows. "I told you so", "You deserve it" , "Why should I care" , "Shut up", "What's your problem" can all easily burst someone's bubbles.

Then there are those who must put down others to "get high". The best we can do is to avoid them lest we become one of them.

A bubble by default is short lived. Why burst it before it's time? Please let them soar as long as it lasts ...

Dennis the Menace

Dennis the Menace has been one of my favorite cartoon characters. In fact that was the only page I looked forward to in a news paper while in college. After many many years I suddenly thought of Dennis the Menace. So glad to find him online and here are some scenes to share...

My favorite one is him attending to the Pastor at the door. Which is yours if there is one?

Jun 16, 2011

Letter to my friends

Dear Friends! Greetings. Fine here and wish the same. Kindly excuse my long delay in writing a proper post. It's just that life got busy lately. Before it is too long I wanted to write to you.

Tomorrow is the last day of school. Also Mom is arriving from India which is very exciting. I plan on taking Flat Stanley with us but he is not ready yet. If possible I wish to work on him today.

Children are excited of course. Today also they are off and got up early morning around 6:00 AM to promptly watch TV. Television is denied during school days and so they do not miss an opportunity to watch it on holidays. I am hoping to use their help for folding some clothes. Let's see.

It is just 8:29 AM here on Thursday morning. I will be working from home. However I started my day very early as I had to clean up Mom's room and put away things and take care of many other things before my work hours start. In the last 2 1/2 hours I have accomplished a lot more than what I had planned on doing in the past 2 1/2 months!

It is going to be a very busy weekend too. Saturday we have a must-go birthday party to attend and Sunday is Father's Day. I have picked up a red polo shirt for Israel (writing this in confidence that he will not read it...) Red is my favorite color and not his. I hope he will wear it one of these days. I promise to share the pictures when he does.

If I don't get to "see" you all before Sunday, wishing all the Dads a very Happy Fathers Day! Your role in your child's life is irreplaceable. Thank you for doing your best! God bless you!

Friend Always,
~ NRIGirl

Jun 14, 2011

Where is Waldo?

For those of you who are not familiar with Waldo, let me describe him. Waldo is a tall young man in blue pants and red and white striped sweater. He wears glasses and also a matching hat. We were walking together and suddently I lost track of him in the crowd. Can you help me find him?

You may want to double click on the image below to open it bigger in a stand alone browser...

Jun 12, 2011

Roadside America

Jun 10, 2011

13 going 30! Ms. Sirisha Billa

Sirisha Billa is the first daughter of our good friend Ramesh Billa. I have a special affinity towards Sirisha as she was the first baby news from a friend of mine.

We were all young and fresh out of college trying out different ventures at our career when Ramesh my colleague announced he had just had a baby girl the previous day! "Congratulations! Where is the sweet?" was my first response and poor Ramesh hadn't thought of that. However, in an hour or so he returned with a box of sweets to share with all.

Sirisha is now 13 and just as the title suggests, going 30!! Sirisha now has a new title - an author - with the publication of her debut fancy novel Anachronessence. Sirisha is also a great artist and excels in her studies. She is sure a jewel for her parents and a pride for all of us.

The least I can do is 'show her off' and the best you can do is encourage her. Here's Ms.Sirisha one-on-one with NRIGirl talking about her book...

? Congratulations Sirisha and welcome to NRIGirl blog. Appreciate your time and willingness to share with the readers about your book Anachronessence. Can you tell us what it's about and how it all started?
! Anachronessence is basically about a girl who gets caught in two worlds, with two souls living inside her, and two major legacies to uphold--the one that Mother Nature left behind and the one that her true past life left behind. Mix in a trained anakro-assasin, a society she thinks mad, and a group of people that want her dead and not to be reincarnated again, and you have--voila!--Anachronessence.

I guess it all started when I was studying Greek roots in order to do better for a spelling bee. So I was reading the book, and I discovered the word anachronism, which led me to combine some roots and create the word anachronessence. I didn't start writing right then, but instead, it went into my archives. A year or so later, I picked the word up again and created the world of Anachronessence. It took months and months, but I didn't give up, and look where it got me, right?

? What is the inspiration for your book title? What does it mean?
! As I explained before, Anachronessence is a combination of some Greek words and my inspiration for creating it was the word anachronism. Anachronism means either "an error in chronology" or "a person or a thing that is chronologically out of place."

But in this case, Anachronessence means just the essence of a person or thing that keeps going on and on, and is reincarnated. The out of place part comes from the fact that even if this person's essence was born in year 900 b.c. or something, and it is alive now, it is not in its right place.

? Does the main character in the book ever so slightly resemble you?
! Yes, Aydan--the main character does indeed resemble me sometimes. I tried to make it so that people could relate to Aydan. I wanted to make her real to the reader, so I thought first to make her real to me first. So yes, in some aspects, Aydan resembles me and some of the incidents in this story have actually happened to me.

? Do you believe in the multiple personality stuff that you have written about?
! Totally. I believe in anachronessences and I am proud. Anakros can totally be real. Most people believe in an afterlife, a heaven--and I do too. But why not the heaven be the same place, different time? This way, you can't make the same mistakes you made because you have the lives experience and you can live life to its fullest.

? Which age group this book is aimed at?
! I think this book is aimed at people in middle school. I wrote it so it was complicated enough that maybe an advanced fifth-grader could read it, or an average ninth-grader. Or anyone in between!

? A lot of writers struggle with rejection, unsupportive friends or family members, mixed reviews, and their own insecurities. How do you handle that?
! Well, lemme tell ya. I am not a 'lot of writers.' Even though some close people used to believe that my writing was a waste of time, I enjoyed it and I believed I could do it, and here I am. My family was very supportive once they found out how important this was to me. As for mixed reviews, I like constructive criticism and I like knowing that at least this person read the book. My own insecurities? Well I guess the only insecurity I have is that an angry mob will knock down my door and demand to know why I wrote such a crappy book...or something equally hurtful. Besides that, nada. I love writing and that's that.

? What are your goals for the future? Do you have another story on the boiling pot?
! My goals for the future are to complete my studies, write and publish a couple more books, and become famous enough to get my book into a movie! Whoa, wouldn't that be hot? And yeah, I have another story on the boiling pot. It's completely different from Anachronessence, but I love it. :)

? What would you like to say to writers who are reading this interview and wondering if their voices and visions matter enough to share?
! I say "If you want to be heard, you will be." It took me months and months to get this right, and when I finally did, the satisfaction makes me think...oh yeah, it was all worth it. To be able to tell my friends, "Hey guys, my book's out!" is an honor you won't want to miss. And I say "If your vision is strong enough, if you're gutsy enough, and if you've got the support of your loved ones, you can do it. No matter who tells you you can't, don't listen. Look at me--I have a laptop and a hardworking dad and I got my book published didn't I?"

? Would you like to share some tips for aspiring writers on getting their work published?
! Psh, yeah. No one can hurt you unless you let them. When people tell you to give up, keep going. I don't know about you, but I enjoy writing and I want to be able to do this for the rest of my life. I'm thirteen years old, and I did it. But only because I gave up that day with my grandmother to go sightseeing and made some personal sacrifices of my own. You have to be persistent and on top of that, determined. Keep bugging your family until they listen. "Hey Dad! Hey Mom! This is what I want to do!"

? I understand the book is available on amazon.com through which I ordered my copy. If someone wants a signed copy, how can interested parties contact you?
! I guess you'd call my dad?

Jun 9, 2011

Apples to Oranges

Do you ever get this nagging thought on something and you have to get it out? Well, that's what just happend to me. Over the last few weeks I have been hearing the term "comparing apples to apples" a lot that my mind went after it; why we can only compare apples to apples and oranges to oranges and not apples to oranges; the result is the chart below...

Grows in treesApples can grow in moderate climate but Oranges grow only in tropical places
Used for juiceApple juice is transparent while Orange juice is cloudy. Apple is pressed to produce juice, orange is squeezed
Size is comparablethough weight may not be comparable for the same size fruits
Both have seedswhile the color, shape and texture of the seeds are different
Both have great taste mostly sweet when ripe and sour when rawApples can be eaten with the skin, but not the oranges
Both are used in cooking Have distinct flavor
Both have comparable fibre contentBut an orange has a lot more vitamin C packed in it (160%) than an apple (10%)
The internal 'architecture' of apple and orange is different in that apples have no sectioning, whereas oranges are sectioned into 'individually packaged' wedges.
Apple skin is smooth while orange skin is porous
An apple a day keeps the doctor away; so when the doctor is smart keep the apple away :) but not the same with Orange
You cannot upset an apple cart; but an orange cart who cares?
A for Apple, but not O for Orange but Ostritch
Yeah, I feel much better now... but have I passed on the nagging thoughts to you?! Oh no!

Jun 3, 2011

Life is not a laughing matter, or is it?

I so love to laugh and even more love to hear a hearty laugh. I believe laughing is contagious. Just the sound of laughter like that of a running faucet or scattered coins or bubbling waves or why not even the cry of a goat or anything for that matter, can easily trigger a ripple effect.

Mom's laughter is hearty and loud with a wide spread invitation for others to join. She laughs with eyes closed, hands clapping, head rocking, it is a sight to see. Chithiema (my Aunt) can't resist laughing to Mom's elaborations on funny incidents or even regular happenings. Chithiema mostly laughs covering her mouth with her fingers.  I love to make her laugh which lightens me too.

I roll laughing; literally! So, it is best to keep a distance from me when I get going 'ha ha ha ha ha ha...' Israel on the other hand laughs in reserved installments of  'ha ha' and 'he he' and then pauses thinking it over a smile and then goes again 'ha ha' and 'he he'.

I hear a friend of mine laugh and almost always I can visualize clucking chicken that peck on scattered grain, it goes: 'ke ke kkke keke...' Some immediately remind me of Santa Claus with their 'ho ho ho' roaring; while others can remind us of snakes with their laughter going: 'hisssss sisssss sssss...'

It sure is fun listening to laughter that sounds like a sore throated goat: 'nge nge ngeeee...' or why not even a regular goat 'mmhhee...' (no I haven't heard that one, have you?) Then those laughter that ends in a coughing fit like 'kokkum hokkum kok kokkum hokkoum...'

Even the most reserved can't resist laughing though it comes out somewhat suppressed with simply a shaking of their shoulders and nodding of their heads and a wider than normal smile from ear to ear and a bleak attempt at 'hmm hmmm hh'. Trust me, that is fun to watch as well as it makes you feel better that you could amuse them somehow.

Best of all is a mixture of all or some of the above, starting with hissing and ending in coughing via some clucking. Right, I am a little too much. No, not an attempt to make fun. Only an up-close look at life, I mean laughter!

Jun 1, 2011

Happy June!

Happy June everyone! Hard to believe we are at the close of a half year mark shortly. Time sure flies. A quick note to wish you all a great summer 2011!

Just as folks in India are wrapping up with their summer vacation we in the western hemisphere are awaiting start of our summer break. Schools are planned to close by mid June if not earlier.

Children are excited and counting down days to Grandma's visit. And we the working moms and dads are happy too as the commute will be faster now without the school buses.

No big travel plans however we have a few weddings to look forward to this summer. Will soon be busy with planning bridal shower, shopping and catching up with neighbors after our prolonged hibernation. Of course, Flat Stanley will be of huge help with all that.

Fishing might be our No. 1 outdoor activity as in the past years. Though I don't get a fair share at casting, I get equally excited about each catch. Couple of years ago we went ocean fishing with the big guys in the Atlantic and jumped with joy as they reeled in their dinner of 40 - 60 lbs each while we got a star fish and a big snail which we promptly released back into the ocean. With the costs at $50 per head for the six hour trip it is not an activity we can involve in every other weekend. Israel will be glad if he can go by himself but we all cling on to him saying we will wait at the shore while he goes to the sea, and his loving heart can't accept that.

So, mostly we remain happy and contended at home. Especially with the new hammock in the shade and Israel's grilling adventure I can assure you there is no place like home! We enjoy hosting as much as possible inviting the dear and near and the far off ones too. So, if any of you is visiting New Jersey this summer, we will be glad to catch up with you! Please let us know at nrigirl@hotmail.com

Kids will be signing up for tennis, golf and if possible swimming at the local lakes. Oh, that reminds me, we are begging and pleading Israel for a swimming pool this summer, saying all sorts of things like public pools are not hygienic, swimming is a good exercise, it will be such fun for kids etc. So far, I do not see any signs. Will keep you posted if things change.

My main priority this summer is to get fit. Right, it has been my priority for the last several summers but I hope this year will be different. I am skipping coffee for the starters. Joshua, my seven year old is my physical trainer and he is good at it making me do some jogging, dancing, hoola hooping and strength training for 30 minutes everyday - on the Wii. Only downside is, for motivation he keeps a chilled glass of rasna or similar drink which is very sweet. I joke that with that kind of motivation I am going to stay right where I am at even after weeks of hard work. So now he is contemplating plain water. Let's see.

I hope to be in touch often but in case I get too carried away by different activities around summer, you know my thoughts are with you... Enjoy the summer! If you ever wonder where I disappeared, I might have gone fishing...
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