What’s in your giveaway goody bag?



So here we are again, my absolute favourite time of year, Christmas!

Being born and brought up in Mumbai, and coming from a convent educated school, Christmas celebrations were a huge part of my growing up years . At school we used to have competitions making Christmas Nativity sets and form groups singing Christmas carols in the neighbourhood.

I haven’t enjoyed any other festival as much as I have Christmas. It’s that magical month, bringing back many memories of my childhood. I remember running to my friend’s house after school to help in their annual ritual of preparing Christmas sweets and other delicacies.

Even today Christmas for me is all about decorating Christmas trees, fairy lights, yummy cakes, breads and puddings, wine and all things nice. Everything around is so full of celebration and seems so much prettier with the city being decorated with lights and paper lanterns.

But along with the celebrations, Christmas is also a time of giving and sharing with those around us. But that sharing is not limited to those that we love and care for. It is also for the person that we have never met and will never see. Those who are not as fortunate in their lives as we are and could use a helping hand.

If you are thinking of doing something to help the less fortunate now is the perfect time to open out your heart and your wallet. The satisfaction that comes from making a difference in the lives of others cannot be compared to any other feeling.

Knowing that you have helped make someone else’s Christmas a wee bit brighter is a special feeling, and one that has a feel good factor long after the holidays are over.

So what you can give today? What’s in your giveaway goody bag?

Is it a warm smile to someone? Or giving some food to a homeless? Or maybe volunteer at an old age home, a children’s ward in the hospital,  or offer some other help in the community college or a government run school? Maybe you can offer warm clothes that you no longer use and need to someone on the streets. Maybe you can donate a month’s groceries to your domestic help. Or even give the unbroken toys and clothes that are in good condition but no longer fit, to the children’s orphanage.

There are so many ways you can help. Your actions will mean the world to those in need.

Do a random act of kindness and make his world a much better place to live in.

Wishing you warmth and happiness in this festive season!!  Related image

Perfection is a myth.

A man walks out to the street and catches a taxi just going by. He gets into the taxi, and the cabbie says, “Perfect timing. You’re just like Frank.”

Passenger: “Who?”

Cabbie: “Frank Feldman. He’s a guy who did everything right all the time. Like my coming along when you needed a cab, things happened like that to Frank Feldman every single time.”

Passenger: “There are always a few clouds over everybody.”

Cabbie: “Not Frank Feldman. He was a terrific athlete. He could have won the Grand-Slam at tennis. He could golf with the pros. He sang like an opera baritone and danced like a Broadway star and you should have heard him play the piano. He was an amazing guy.”

Passenger: “Sounds like he was really something special.”

Cabbie: “There’s more. He had a memory like a computer. He remembered everybody’s birthday. He knew all about wine, which foods to order and which fork to eat them with. He could fix anything. Not like me. I change a fuse, and the whole street blacks out. But Frank Feldman could do everything right.”

Passenger: “Wow, what a guy!”

Cabbie: ‘He always knew the quickest way to go in traffic and avoid traffic jams. Not like me, I always seem to get stuck in them. But Frank, he never made a mistake, and he really knew how to treat a woman and make her feel good. He would never answer her back even if she was in the wrong; and his clothing was always immaculate, shoes highly polished too. He was the perfect man! He never made a mistake. No one could ever measure up to Frank Feldman.”

Passenger: “How did you meet him?”

Cabbie: “I never actually met Frank. He died and I married his wife.”


Well isn’t Perfection such a myth? It’s like climbing a staircase that never ends. Being “perfect” isn’t something that is taught or found in a “how to” book; it’s something you find within yourself. The most important thing is being honest with yourself and accepting who you really are. The moment you’re comfortable in your own skin, and are doing things you love … that’s the moment you’ll know perfection.


When we are ensnared by the vision of a perfect person, we compare all others to an unreachable standard… and find everyone lacking. Our expectation that a perfect person exists is surely to guarantee failure. The demand for compatibility is never satisfied. When people agree about almost everything, the few points of difference can still seem — to them — enormous. …the ‘right person’ is specified so closely that they will never find such a person; they will always be disappointed because whoever they find will fall short in some way.

Waiting for Mr/Ms Perfect to come along is to say that you have no personal responsibility for what happens to you. When a relationship fails, we do not consider that we might lack humility, empathy or understanding. Instead, we invoke a convenient excuse and say, “We just weren’t right for each other.”

Love is not simply about finding the right person. It’s also about cultivating a set of valuable skills: kindness, sympathy, and understanding. But no matter what, always remember, relationships are hard, complicated, triggering, and yet so utterly worthwhile if we do the work. Love isn’t a state of perfect caring.  To love someone completely one must strive to accept that person exactly the way he or she is, right here and now.

 “Truth is everybody is going to hurt you: you just got to find the ones worth suffering for.”- Bob Marley 



Better Parenting

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In a big city there were independent houses separated by a compound wall.

In one, lived a young techie and in the other, there was an old retired man. Both of them planted identical saplings, on their respective side of the compound wall. Both of them took good care of their plants.

The young man gave his plants lot of water and very high quality manure. The retired man however, gave his plant just the required amount of water and occasionally gave it manure.

The techie’s sapling grew into a lush green leafy robust plant. The retired man’s plant grew luxuriously leafy. One night there was a storm, along with torrential rains and gusty winds.

The next morning both came out to see the fate of their plants. To the techie’s disbelief his plant was uprooted, whereas his neighbours was unharmed.

The techie turned to the neighbor and asked, “Why was my plant uprooted by the rain, despite such good care, whereas yours stayed firm and strong despite minimum care?

The old man replied, “Son, you gave the plant everything it needed in abundance. Since the plant did not have to do anything on its own to search for what it needed, the roots of your plant haven’t gone deep down.”

“And I was giving my plant the bare necessities it needed to survive. It had no choice but to go deep down into the soil to fulfill its needs. Since the root of your plant was superficial, the rain could easily bend and break it. Since the root of my plant was deeply grounded, it could easily withstand the onslaught of the weather.”

Isn’t the story similar to the way we deal with our children, and our youngsters?

We get too overprotective and possessive of them. We end up caring too much for them, pampering them and even meeting all of their unreasonable demands, that they are incapable of handling rejection or failure.

Ask any educator and they will tell you that problem solving is foundational to a child’s learning capacity. Leadership studies as well focus on the same skill set. Good teachers don’t provide correct answers, as much as teach kids how to use problem-solving skills to arrive at a solution. Another major aspect of good parenting is discipline and respect. Instilling high moral character in kids, teaching them to treat each other with kindness, to stand up for what is right, and to respect people strengthens their moral fibre.

Teaching children starts the moment we choose to let our infant find the pacifier that fell just inches from his fingertips instead of scooping it up ourselves.

Give your child some space. Whatever age your kids are, allow them to make mistakes and teach them how to move forward. Encourage them in creative play. Kids of all ages learn most in the context of play. Make sure their play involves enough challenge and requires imagination. Eventually, problem solving becomes its own reward.

Allow children to experience failure. If we’re unwilling to see our children fail at a task, then we’re unwilling for our children to learn. Establish a solid support system at home so that they grow up satisfied with their achievements and ambitions.

By not giving them the space, the air, and the impetus to grow, by not giving them the power to handle responsibility, we are basically limiting their minds to fully develop and tackle issues.

On the other hand if we just leave them to take their own decisions, without giving them appropriate support or assistance they may end up making wrong decisions due to a lack of maturity.

Caring for our children is exactly as caring for our plants. Undoing it will make the plant die and wither but overdoing it will make the plant weak.

Surround your children with love, happiness, and encouragement so they have the confidence to reach goals. And do keep in mind that school grades are not what motivates a top student to succeed, but rather it’s his/her inner drive for learning.

As the plant needs the right amount of nourishment and sunshine to bloom, so does the child need the right balance of attention, inspiration and encouragement to succeed.

And that balance can only be achieved through wisdom and maturity.