Tiny fingers


We are at my sister’s place, enjoying the holidays. Life has become synonymous with a deep lassitude; a lassitude that comes from having had a crazy year filled with chores and deadlines.

My sister and I unwind by catching up on every conceivable topic. My little niece is always in the vicinity, adding much charm to our conversations, with her sweet thoughts and love.

My mom, her grandmother, has gifted my niece a little-girl nail paint set that has tiny bottles in many colours. My niece spends all her free time applying nail paint to her tiny fingers and toes, and also painting the nails of anyone else at home who agrees to her plans. And when she is not painting her nails, she is busy practicing her dance routine for her school’s soon-to-be Annual Day.

Soon, it is time for my niece to wear her costume and get ready for her dance performance. The entire family is going to attend the show. My niece flits about like a butterfly the whole morning, but sits patiently as my sister and I do her hair and make up. She is very aware of her lipstick and wears a strange pout to ensure that she does not smudge or swallow her lipstick.

All of us tell her that she looks absolutely gorgeous. She smiles and poses for pictures, and then says, “Let me see how I look.” There is a mirror on the inside of one of the wardrobe doors. As she evaluates herself, we are only able to see her tiny fingers holding the door. We await the verdict with bated breath.

After a few minutes, she comes out, all smiles, and announces, “I look beautiful.” We agree in unison and clap. We are soon on our way to a beautiful event and a memorable evening.

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Rose Nectar Vanilla Delight


The sun has set on a wonderful nine days of festivities, after the Indian festival of Navrathri. All the wonderful anticipation, pre-festival, has now been replaced by exhaustion; but of a very beautiful and fulfilling kind.

The nine days seem to have just flown by, in a colourful whirl of saree draping, accessorising, having guests over and visiting the homes of friends, eating the yummiest of foods, and posing for and taking the most vibrant pictures to trap all those wonderful memories.

Phew!

Right now, I am sitting on the couch, with my afternoon coffee. I lazily flip through the hundreds of pictures. The smiles are contagious – I smile, I laugh; as I remember all the fun we had.

One photo in particular makes me smile. Just before the festival started, I was scouring the internet for dessert recipes. My criteria was that it had to be simple to prepare and good to taste.

I finally found what I wanted. It was rose milk shake with a vanilla icecream float! I tried it out at home, before I had my friends over.

My children were the guinea pigs. They had their first cup, and kept asking for more.

That decided it!

Later in the day, my son said, “Mom, I think you have invented a drink that is sensational. I feel it deserves a new name.”

I said, “But, it is an old recipe…!”

Son: But this is super-special because ‘you’ made it. Let us name it Rose Nectar Vanilla Delight!”

Me: Wow..is it as good as all that?

Son: I bet your friends will love it too!

And that is how it turned out. Armed with my son’s love, I served the Rose Nectar Vanilla Delight to all my friends, all of whom loved it!

And, as we wind down after Navrathri, and look forward to Deepavali, my son’s love and words warm my heart, and give me the confidence to try something new!