Friendly Friday Photo Challenge- Ebb and Flow

   Drum roll indeed, Amanda…what an interesting thought for this week! This Friendly Friday Photo Challenge is a fun and fantastic photo challenge co-hosted by Amanda and Snow (who will also be joined by Manja…yayyyyy!!!).

   Join in when you can!

   I am not a sea person…I am afraid of the water, I tan horribly, and the heat just toys with my sanity it seems! Mountains are more me. But I do still love going to the beach as long as I am at a good distance from the water and have a nice umbrella to keep the sun away! It is our favorite thing to do as a family during the summer months here that we unfortunately get very less of and so on a good day, you will find us on the beach! The milieu is always so upbeat with kids and grown ups running  after beach balls, making sand castles, having picnics or just goofing around…all adding to their tales to be added to their pocketbook of memories.

   Very commonly and aptly used as a metaphor for our lives, representing its highs and lows, life unfolds through ebb and flow…through the holding on and learning to letting go. Life has taught us all in some form that we are not in control of all things and acceptance of that fact is crucial in moving forward. The more we try to hold on to things beyond our control, the more they slip away causing distress and anger among other emotions that impact negatively on our well being. Life ebbs and it flows too…we just need to gently remind us of that and while it is easier said than done, it is still the way to move forward…to living a fuller life. We all adapt to circumstances and teach ourselves to face our fears and ride out the storm…we all do it differently, but nonetheless we get it done. Life oscillates between the good and the not so good and sometimes it’s downright cruel. We scream at the top of our lungs, gasping for breath on this roller coaster ride and we also calm ourselves down…we navigate, putting one foot in front of the other. I have always believed that there is a bigger picture to be looked at, a lesson to be learned and while many may roll their eyes and shrug their shoulders, I choose to continue to believe in this, especially when circumstances pin me down and I feel like there is no strength left to get back up.

Thanks Amanda for this week’s beautiful idea.

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Monterey ,California

 

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Monterey, California

 

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Duluth, Minnesota

 

 

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Somewhere in Maryland

 

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Cape Cod, Massachusetts

 

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Plymouth, Massachusetts

 

I found this today at a  burrito place, Baja Burrito, where we had stopped for lunch this afternoon and it caught my eye:)

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Have a good week you all and thanks for stopping by!

 

‘What’s the Word’ Wednesday

Ennui :

Feeling of weariness and dissatisfaction; boredom

 

   My four year old has been, of late,  using the sentence:’ I am bored!’ And I have been processing it, very carefully…trying out different things to lessen his ‘boredom’. He has also recently started getting more screen time than usual as I have been slacking, probably, in keeping him occupied. That has been followed by pangs of guilt and some serious ‘research’ into how to best stimulate the young mind, how to keep them occupied etc etc. All of this also has had less than desirable results at times, setting the whole cycle in motion again!

   Growing up, I was always told to keep myself occupied as much as possible as it was not a good thing to sit idle. Who can remember this from their childhood days- ‘An idle brain is the devil’s workshop!’ And so ingrained is that notion in my mind that I too have been doing the same with my son and in the process probably not letting him be a child. I wonder is too much structured time good for kids? I look around and parents and kids are running from one activity to the other and both often look exhausted and somewhat ‘doing things for the sake of doing them’. I have already had suggestions from ‘concerned’ minds that I should be enrolling my son, before it’s too late, in guitar lessons and soccer and some sort of piano or drum lessons too (my kid is just another kid who loves to kick the ball around and beat the drums and strum his ukulele). And the only thought that had crossed my mind was “too late for a four year old??”

   Recent research has shown that being bored once in a while is actually good for the child’s brain (https://newsroom.clevelandclinic.org/2018/03/08/unplug-your-kids-boredom-is-good-for-the-brain/- there are many more articles on this topic..just ask Google!) It gives them time to be creative and helps them think.  If a parent is filling in all the free time of the child, I wonder how will they learn to do it themselves? We cannot think for the kids nor should we and as I am learning slowly, it is not good for my kid to be told how to keep himself occupied at all times. I need to let him be a kid and help him visit the land of make believe.

   We did not have the electronic devices at our finger tips and we did figure out ways to keep ourselves from getting ‘bored’. And as far as I remember, it was fun to pretend play and talk to other kids, get into quarrels and figure out how to get along, scrape our knees playing on the streets and get our hands dirty in the mud! I wonder if we are failing to give our kids enough outdoor time or has societal norms put such limits? Such thoughts cross my mind and I am often perplexed by the complexity of the answers. Times are different and life has become much more demanding and trying to find a balance between the ideal and what’s possible can sometimes be an uphill task. But I am willing to let my four year old get a little bored and figure out things on his own, get down on my knees and get our hands dirty, if not in the mud then in the play dough and other gooey stuff!

 

(I had started writing this post about a month ago and had then just forgotten! My ‘bored’ four year old made me think about this today and I am thankful for that ‘boredom!)

 

 

Thanks for stopping by:)

Friendly Friday Photo Challenge-Twins

Happy Happy Birthday to Snow‘s boys!! And though I had nothing along these lines, I could not not join in this week’s prompt…it’s a celebration!

   There are no twins in my family and I have somehow always regretted that…not sure why. But I have known some as friends, acquaintances, friend’s kids and as strangers – on my way to school by the good old tram many moons ago, every day twin sisters, who were much older than I was at that time, would board the same tram as me from a particular stop and get down at the same one as me….I used to be fascinated by them, they were identical and it was impossible to tell them apart! It is interesting how memories of  things long forgotten are triggered and I just could not stop smiling today thinking about those tram rides to school and the faces that I had no idea I remembered, flashed across my mind as if I had seen them just the other day.

   I was trying to think how I could participate and my eyes suddenly fell on two identical coffee mugs on the kitchen counter and then I glanced at a couple of elephants on top of the cabinet and I figured I was going to post photos of stuff at my home that I had two of! I am hoping Snow won’t mind:)

 

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If you have not joined in before, do join in the Friendly Friday Photo Challenge hosted by Snow and Amanda…it is a lot of fun and you will get to see amazing posts too!

 

Thanks for stopping by:)

Nostalgia

Nostalgia is a good thing, they say.

 

That favorite dress you wore to every party

The fight over the TV remote with your sibling

The holiday shopping and gift wrapping

That extra pocket money for all the ice cream.

 

Holding hands to cross the street

Sulking when denied that special treat

Looking out of the window to catch the taxi turning the bend

That had in it, people you loved.

 

Brown covers on school notebooks

White ‘keds’ for PT class

Running around in circles till our heads spun

Are now all things of the past.

 

The big courtyard with the mango tree

And clothes hanging on the lines

Faces I can no longer touch

All remain in my memory, immune to the tricks of time.

 

The sound of the ice cream man on sultry afternoons

The sudden ‘load shedding’

That unexpected guest and unbridled giggles

Are now sacred pages in my memory pocket book.

 

Pretty little smiles fill up the present

Dreams abound

Wheels of time spin faster than before

As I rush to hold on.

 

Scattered across the memory

Are glimmers of a time a gone by

Nostalgia peeks from corners

As my soul dances to the tinkling rhythms of the past.

 

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Monday Motivation

   It is sometimes hard to keep it together when there is so much negativity all around. Half truths are not truths, disdain and contempt for others is not good, “I” above everything and everyone else is shallow. But when walls seem to be closing in from all directions, it sometimes helps to just keep breathing. So, keep breathing my dears…just keep breathing.

   I went for a walk with my son the other day and it was a beautiful evening. The sky was blue and white and gray and pink…it was amazing to look up. As I clicked these with my phone, the song- ” What a Wonderful World” kept playing in my head! So much beauty all around us…how are we not caring for HER more?

 

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“I don’t have to chase extraordinary moments to find happiness-it’s right in front of me if I’m paying attention and practicing gratitude” – Brene Brown
Keep Breathing!

Friendly Friday Photo Challenge- Shadows

These prompts keep getting interesting! Thanks Amanda for this week’s prompt. Here’s my contribution for the Friendly Friday Photo Challenge hosted alternately by Amanda and Snow.

 

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Palm Trees, Key Biscayne- Florida

 

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Early morning shadow of window blinds on wall, Home-NJ

 

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Shadow of Tree on snow covered lawn, NJ

 

  “Keep your face to the sunshine and you cannot see a shadow”-Helen Keller

Thanks for stopping by!

Randomness

I hope this phase of nothingness passes soon and I can get back to my scribbles! I clicked these two random photos over the last week and they spoke to me through their simplicity.

 

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Wishing you all a peaceful week ahead:)

“Be Kind Whenever Possible. It Is Always Possible”- Dalai Lama