Spidey’s Serene Sunday – Part 232 –

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“Ohana means family. Family means nobody gets left behind or forgotten.”

Lilo & Stitch

Thanks Spidey for reminding me of that Lilo and Stitch quote.

I used to have a talking Stitch toy (yes, I admit it was before I had kids, and I was an adult, but then, I am a Disney fan, so it was mine!) and it would say a few different phrases from the film, in response to you saying things to it, and the above quote was said a lot.

I was reminded of the quote yesterday, after attending a family function back home in Brum.

Some folk I met there are family members who I hadn’t seen for five years or longer. It’s an unfortunate situation, but I live a bit further out than most, and when there are gatherings, they tend to be in the term time, and on a day where I just cannot get there in time, or if I arrived, I’d have to leave pretty much straight away, to get home at a decent time.

But instead of silly comments, or moods, I was welcomed back into the fold with open arms. Some asking about my writing, as they follow my progress on Social Media; some wanting to know how Hubby Dearest was; some jsut wanting to catch up.

It was a great feeling.

One of my aunts said “Tu toh Eid ka chand hi niklai.” It is a saying to describe someone who is rarely seen, and much anticipated, as during the month of Ramadan, and at Eid, Muslims wait, eagerly for the moon (chand) to show, before breaking fasts or starting celebrations.

That made me feel special, but also highlighted to me how little I get to see my extended family. Some of these folk, I saw weekly, growing up, and now it is after years that we meet.

I miss seeing my extended family a lot. They are a huge part of my upbringing, and my memories.

But at least I know I’m not forgotten… and I’ll never forget them either!

So… tell me, which member of your extended family do you have special connections with, and will never forget?

Have a peaceful Sunday Peeps  And enjoy your week! ❤ 

The Day I Broke Into My In-Laws House #notacriminalhonest

Yup… that day just came to pass.

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No, actually I prevented that happening!

It wasn’t quite the evening I had envisaged. I had been busy filling in my new school diary ready for next year. The kids were busy with their friends outside and Hubby Dearest was chilling with a beer and the TV on.

I’d just packed my school bits away, and got the kids inside, ready to get showered, when the phone rang. Usually my Mum-In-Law waits for us to call her, but it was her number on the display, so I answered it, worrying that something was wrong.

Well… it was.

Apparently one of the kids (naming no names, Lil Princess…) had opened Mum-In-Law’s bedroom window rather wide, and left it open, so a gust of much needed wind had swept into the room and slammed her door shut.

Such a hard slam that the door refused to open!

Oo-er!

So the request was made.

“Could you come over and climb up a ladder, get on the flat roof and shimmy into the bedroom to try and open the door from the inside? Or bring Lil Man, he’s skinny and nimble…” (Cheek! I know I put on weight, but not that much!)

Well, Lil Man was in the shower, and I wouldn’t have wanted to risk him getting stuck or hurt, so Spider Woman here (or Idiot Girl, some might say) huffed over there.

Yup. I huffed.

Because there are others who may have been able to do this daring rescue mission… except, Dad-In-Law is too old, Mum-In-Law has too many health issues, Bro-In-Law wouldn’t have fit through the window, Sis-In-Law had only just got in from a crazy day at work, and Hubby Dearest, well, he’s only just recovering from his own injury!

So, actually there wasn’t anyone else.

I still huffed, mumbling during my exit, “Here’s hoping I don’t end up doing an injury to myself too, climbing through bl***y windows!”

Hubby Dearest told me to leave it, but I couldn’t. The window was wide open, and near a flat roof… too much temptation for someone who wanted to break and enter, without breaking…

I arrived.

Found ladder with Sis-In-Law.

Mum -In-Law tried to tell me to leave it, as whilst I’d been driving over, Hubby Dearest had called his mum and told her that it was very silly to expect me to climb up a ladder and possibly hurt myself (Oh, ye of little faith…) but if you know me, you know I am determined, and if I have set my mind to a task, I will achieve it, however silly!

I reminded her about the fact that she has her important ‘stuff’ in her room, and that open window would jsut be too easy a target… she stepped back and allowed me to begin.

Climbed up, with an audience. Mum-Im-Law, Bro-In-Law and Sis-In-Law. Mum-In-Law thrust a screwdriver in my hand as I ascended. “When you get it open, just take the damn barrel out!”

I tried to get in but the window was a tad too high, and nimble as I am, I wasn’t that flexible to jump through the opening, so went down again, got a stool and headed back up again.

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Ritu’s Mission Impossible!

Successful shimmy, (thought my chest might just be a little battered from dragging myself in!) and I entered the house in a way I never dreamed I would have to do.

But the door was stuck fast.

The barrel had totally gone. The handle just turned in my hand. I was thankful for the screwdriver then. I had to wedge it gently through and manually push the barrel to open.

Once that was done, I wasted no time in removing this ancient lock and barrel from the door, handed all the bits and pieces to Mum-In-Law (not before I had to get her to hold my legs as I hung back out of the window to rescue the abandoned stool – that must have been a sight!) and pootled off home.

So there.

That is the story of when I broke into my In-Laws house.

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Yup. that’s how I looked on the roof! (Im my dreams!)

You’re welcome.

Moral of story – When Ritu tells you something seems a bit faulty, check it out instead of waiting for clamity to strike. About a month ago I mentioned that said door was sticking sometimes and when closed, could only be opened from the inside… because the barrel wasn’t turning fully… See! Listen to The Ritu!

Spidey’s Serene Sunday – Part 230

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“I find television very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go into the other room and read a book.”

Groucho Marx

Oh, I loved this quote, Spidey!

This weekend I have been talking reading and books a lot, with my uncle, who came to visit me. This is my mum’s eldest brother. My Mamaji. And he lives in Kenya. I haven’t seen him in 18 years, since my wedding,

He’s a very special man to me. Another dad. And someone who has inspired me to read. Both him and my mother read copiously when I was younger, and though life may not allow them to read as much, even in retirement, they are both like me and would rather have a good book in their hand, than an eye on the goggle box, as my mum always calls it!

My Mamaji treated himself this trip, to an All New Kindle Paperwhite, and he brought it with him, to compare with mine, and to discuss book-related matters.

He’s a non-fiction reader more than fiction, and my memories of him are always of him with his nose in a book or the paper. I remember his bedroom in Kenya distinctly, with piles of books lining walls too!

In fact he was nearly a PhD Graduate in the 60s, but due to personal problelms, he never finished it, and it is a regret he feels keenly. He studied here in London, at Queen Mary’s College and Imperial College, both of which his took my aunt, my Mamiji, to visit last week!

There was a trunk filled with his belongings in my parent’s garage. My mum has kept it safe since it was entrusted to her care in the early 70s and she hasn’t dared open it, or get rid of it.

A couple of weeks ago, Mamaji stationed himself in the garage of Pops and Mum’s house, to rummage through his memories. The trunk was filled with all sorts, including a handmade suit of his, some other hilariously 60s clothes and TONS of books. When I phoned mum that day, she was laughing as she told me how he was like a child in a toyshop, delving into the memories of an extremely precious time for him.

I was in awe of his memory.

Even yesterday, as he mentioned the titles of some of the books, and the authors, some of whom had been his PhD lecturers, his eyes glistened with pure joy. He told mum to give the books away, as he can’t take them back, but he also had a ‘small’ list of ones he would ask her to keep, for memory’s sake.

I know I shall be rummaging around in that trunk before they get given away, to get another insight into Mamaji and his younger life.

Before he left, his parting words to me were, “Send me that book of yours when it’s done.”

Another member of my family who has been such a strong, silent support of my writing dream. He was so proud the day my poetry book came out, and I know I just need to do this, get this book published, not just for me, but for all those dear to me, who have so much faith in my ability.

So… tell me, who is part of your silent support group?

Have a peaceful Sunday Peeps  And enjoy your week! ❤ 

47 Years #lifegoals

Today, my parents are celebrating 47 years of marriage.

A goal I aspire to as well.

They are a couple who have shown us how love, understanding, patience and a sprinkle of madness, is the best recipe for marital success.

Wishing them a wonderful day and hope their union may last many more years.

Happy Anniversary Pops and Mum ❤️

Chai And A Chat #24 #ChaiAndAChat

Hey there Peeps! I hope you’re ready … never a quiet one in Ritu-World!

  • If we were sipping chai together I’d tell you – “Week Three – In-Law-less – done!!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d tell you work has been manic (isn’t it always? Life in an Early Years class…) We had Science week, so hyped the kids up with a chance to meet some minibeasts, like ginat Africam landsnails, tarantulas, African milipedes, cockroaches and a snake! Then on the Tuesday, my day started with a panic, as my team leader was off sick, and there was a moderation meeting happening the next day, across the schools in our academy. For those of you that don’t know, moderation is when you compare your judgements about pupils with the other schools, to make sure you aren’t making too easy/harsh judgements about how a child is progressing. I was worrying as I have never done one of these without here there, and the other Reception teacher has never been to one before… blind leading the blind? Yup! On top of that we had planning to do the next day too, which was going to be cut short because of the Moderation meeting. So by 9am on Tuesday, I had gathered moderation information, chased up paperwork, and created a skeleton plan for the following week’s learning. Phew! But thankfully my Team Leader ended up back that afternoon, because she cannot stay at home! So no panic in the end! But the day did not end without a tension headache… oh yes…
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d say that, moderation went well. I kinda feel a lot more confident about these things now, and hope that the experiences will help me further along in my career.
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d tell you that the rest of the school week was relatively simple, until my kids decided to embarrass the heck out of me first thing on a Friday morning. Playing up and messing my classroom before the day had even started, arguing and generally making a nuisance of themselves. I ended up blowing my top at Lil Man before he headed off to his school… Seriously? Can children not even keep calm for at least 10 minutes, without causing a storm? BP felt like it rose high!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d say that, on the flip side, he has done really well in a Maths test, proving that the tutoring we send him for seems to be working! And he is also playing badminto regularly, on top of the cricket, and on Sunday, he was scouted for a Badminton Academy! I am very proud of him and his strengths. (Not so much, his teenage strops and attitude!)
    If we were sipping chai together I’d tell you Lil Princess got me worried this week. I would walk past her room, and hear her shout ot periodically, “Just shut up…!”… Turns out I didn’t need to worry! Apparently she did really well, but I couldnt watch as I was short staffed at the time!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d say that the weekend was absolutely wonderful with Pops and Mum. They brought a huge box full of my old photos from infanthood to university and I spent a long time perusing… they also found old certificates of mine, and embarrasing school photos too! We spent a long time chatting, reminiscing and talking about all sorts, and I learned so much from them both, about their lives, and customs and traditions in our culture. It’s amazing how I learn new things about my parents every time we sit and chat. Seriously, you think you must know everything about them, and then they tell you things that make your head spin… I hope to share some of the stories one day, on the blog, but I tell you what, Mum could write a memoir, and it would be amazing!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d mention that mum even managed to help me Marie Kondo the heck outta my kitchen which I had been dreading! We stripped countertops, emptied cupboards, threw out of date stuff away, made a (huge) donate pile and scrubbed cupboards and drawers and walls too (bit of a condensation issue in the kitchen) and then put it all back, wrapping up equipment that is used less frequently so it stays clean and generally more organinsed. Feels good, but 8 hours of that andf my shoulders are killing, my body is exhausted and eyes are itching from dust and all sorts! Still – feels GOOD!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d also say we had to sleep on the sofa bed for two nights, as I would never inflict that upon my parents, and I totally appreciated that Sunday night bubble bath that I have made sure I enjoy each week, as part of my ‘self’ word of the year!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d let you know we went a bit spiritual too, at the temple on Sunday, celebrating the birth of a baby in one of Hubby Dearest’s friend’s family. Soul cleansed, kitchen cleansed, body cleansed… just need my mind to be emptied now, though I fear that will never happen!
  • If we were sipping that chai together, and possibly reaching for cake or cookies I’d tell you that official lesson observation week is also this week, so I just need to get Tuesday out of the way, successfully (my observation day) then I can breathe and relax!
  • If we were sipping that chai togetherand possibly reaching for cake or cookies I’d mention that this coming weekend, NOTHING is planned – honestly! I hope for lots of lazing around. I need it!

Have a wonderful week, Peeps! Let me know how your week went!

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