Monday, November 29, 2010

Big Bad Wolf Book Sale 2010 - what I bought

The Big Bad Wolf Book Sale is a much awaited event in our household. The last year we really went mad and crazy and bought loads and loads of books...I have written extensively about it in this previous post.

This year we went on the 14th of November.....yes I know or rather realised later that it's Children's Day in India !!! So that was my excuse for buying books for my son and me (well I also am my parent's child no??? so it was my Children's Day also !!)

I did not have a lot of energy this time...the husband was also travelling all week so was exhausted too....but it was soooooooo sweet of him to take me to the sale and be patient enough while I browsed. He had his turn with browsing too, but this time I knew he was more tired than eager to look for good books.

My strategy for this year was to buy Asian authors for myself and non-American and Non-UK authors for my son.

Here's what all I picked up this year.
  1. The concubine of Shanghai - Hong Ying
  2. The river of lost footsteps. A personal history of Burma- Thant Myint - U
  3. The immortals - Amit Chaudhuri
  4. The opium clerk - Kunal Basu
  5. Tiger Hills - Sarita Mandanna
  6. The hungry tide - Amitav Ghosh
Have finished reading the first one on the list, and it was a good read, and I got to learn about life in China (a bit).
The second one is what I am reading now, and am loving every page of it. Who knew reading history could be so much fun...well especially when we don't have to mug it up for an exam !!

For Aadu here's what we picked up:
  1. The gentle lion - Takashi Yanase
  2. Little daughter of the snow - Arthur Ransome
  3. Little donkey's wish - Udo Weigelt
  4. Copy & color in
  5. Drawing fantasy art
Considering last year's number...this year we picked up only a few....but all's OK....since we stuck to my strategy and plan.

What books have you bought/read lately?

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Resuscitating our beloved blog

It feels great to see that Neelum is resuscitating our blog whom we have neglected sorely this year. I was looking at all the posts and I was shocked to discover that I have posted only once this year and that too in February!!!!!!!!!

Time passes so quickly when you have young children but that's really no excuse for not posting in the blog. I have seen mothers with newborns who blog regularly and so what excuse do I have with four and  five year olds?

From now on I have pledged to myself to blog regularly.It can be a short post or even a video but it would be great if all of us can keep writing and interacting with our readers and fellow bloggers.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Memories of my oldest book

The Universe listens to you and and has it's own ways of manifesting our wishes and said a friend of mine over a cup of tea just a few days back.

She was trying to get me to blogging again, and begin I did......and I was thinking about a post about books and wanted to share my childhood favorites with all my readers. I wanted to tell everyone about the one book (from my childhood) that stays on in my mind after alllllllllllll these years.

And here I am doing this post about the same....and had it not been for Shruti's post about Diwali Moments, I would have never gone and looked at blogadaa, and all the amazing contests they have there. BTW: Shruti won the blogadda contest about Diwali Moments !!

Getting back to the memories about my oldest book....

The book was bought by my Papa, and although I don't remember the exact date/year of when he bought it, but I can say this much that I knew how to maybe I was 7-8 years old. So the book has been in the family for over 26 years !! that's like quarter of a decade !!

My Papa has a practice of writing the name of the recipient on the first page of the book in the most creative manner...I follow this practice with my son's books !!

The book I'm talking about it 'The Adventures of Dunno and his Friends' by Nikolai Nosov, a Russian author. The book was translated in English by Margaret Wettlin.

The book was thick, hard bound, with a nice cover with the picture of the main character 'Dunno' on it....the cover is still picture clear in my mind.

(Image Courtesy:

The book is in my home in Pune, where it rests with all other books that Papa got for us (big brother and me) as kids. It is super fun to look through this collection whenever we go there...sadly now it's only a couple of times every year. Sigh !!!! One of the many drawbacks of not living in India :(
The very fact that the book still remains in good condition in our Pune home, shows that I have no plans of letting go of this treasure, firstly because it's a book and having parents who love books and collections of their own, I was/am never under any pressure to de-clutter or give away !! The same collect-books streak continues today at my home in KL, and every year we have to make a trip to IKEA to get a new book case !!
Secondly, we hope to pass on the book collection to our next generation, so it's our duty to safe-keep it.

The book is about the amazing little people of a fun town called 'Flower Town'. Dunno, the main character has many friends, and they manage to run into some kind of adventure after another.
The plots are simple, and very funny. One begins to love each and every character in the book.

One thing that I am going to do for sure during my next trip to India is get this book back for my son who is 5 years old, and loves books and reading !! All these years I only allowed him to browse through the book and always had a very watchful eye on him !! for fear of he causing any harm to my beloved book. And my son is a guy who has never broken a toy or torn a book !! My possessiveness comes into action unknowingly !!

I hope the book brings as much joy to my son and my brother's kids over the years ahead .... as much as we (big brother and I) had while we read it as kids.

I highly recommend this book to all parents, not only is it a great read, but it has amazing illustrations and drawings on each page which make the book more readable and super duper enjoyable !!

Through blogadda, I was happy to learn about a company called 'Friends of Books'. This looks like something I'm going to they have an Online Book Rental Library and also a Bookstore full of amazing second hand books. The best part is that they operate 24x7 and 365 days a year !! Hold on...there's more....the books are delivered to your doorstep all over India !!!
Goshhhhhhhh that's like THE best thing for a book-lover like me.
I can buy the books and have them sent to my home in Pune and then have the family ship them over here !! Sadly I can't avail of their library service...but I'm going to tell all my friends in India about this great service.

Friends of Books - Library that delivers and I connect with bloggers at

Monday, November 22, 2010

November 2010 Artsy Craftsy Challenge


Amol and his little helper Aadu made this beautiful Akaash-Kandil for this Diwali.
It is a very basic and simple lamp to make. Aadu helped with the cutting and pasting.
The instruction can be found here on Balagokulam

We used up some 7 sheets of card paper that we had at home. Glue, Stapler, and some glittering sticky tape is all that you need to make this lamp.

This is the first year that Father-son did something together for Diwali. And I am proudly going to submit it to Shruti's November Artsy Craftsy Challenge.

Artsy-Craftsy Challenge

One day at a time

Yes ...'one day at a time'...............that's my motto from this day onwards.

Loads happened in the months since I last wrote on this blog. There was my India trip, and I came back with a viral...that took a while to shake off, then there was this unprecedented tiredness and weakness that took over for about 2 months....there were many visits to the doctor....then after a while I grew sick of seeing them. Then along with all this there was a newly acquired aversion to the smell of cooking oil and smells of all kinds in general.
Yes people I realized well into my 3rd month that I was pregnant !!

As of now I am taking in all the help I can possibly get, a lot of money is being spent I know...but I guess what is more important is my peace of mind and me being able to spend just as much time with my First-born (never thought i'd refer to Aadu in this manner).

There were loads of friends who I met during my India trip who said they read the blog and I was surprised coz they never comment :(
There are friends here in KL, who encouraged me to re-start writing as that would get my mind elsewhere and I could have a clearer mindset. Thanks Dhanya, Kakoli, Nirali, Runa, Manali, not to forget the Husband who's at his supportive best these days.
Along with all these special friends i'd like to especially mention another friend of mine....Shruti. Now Shruti is more than just a blog friend...and she's the one with monthly crafty challenges on her superb blog. Recently she did a post about Diwali celebrations and she put up a photo from my last year's Diwali album, the one about the Shivaji-fort. She did all the link up and all to my blog....and I was like....'goshhhhhhhh you really want to link up an almost dead blog onto you your thriving blog?' I was really ashamed and embarrassed...and it was that day that I made a promise to everyone of my friends who were edging me on... that I would write again.

So here I am.