Sunday, January 21, 2018

In coding and computers

Anjali is on a goal to earn a million dollars before she is an adult so that she is financially secure. This conversation is based on that.
Anjali. Mom, I didn't earn a single penny today.
Me. How much did you want to earn?
Anjali. 166 dollars.

Facts, feelings, findings and future

Recently, we attended a programme and learnt about journalling. One of the things we looked at is how a journal should consist of facts, feelings, findings and future.

Here is my journal

Anjali and I had an argument today. I told Anjali off for being rude and specifically teenagerish, and how she is flippant about stuff and doesnt work on things for long enough.

Later, looking through Anjali's homework, I noticed that her Math homework was rather advanced and done through very quick and dirty ways. Ordinarily, I would take atleast five minutes to solve them (it took me five minutes to crosscheck each question), but this girl had them all down as one liners with just the answer.

I find that Anjali is very intelligent. However, with the intelligence, somes a feeling of superiority and entitlement. I am not quite sure, as a parent, what to do about it except to whack it off her, though I am not sure whether this would be a good solution.

I did notice, however, that Anjali cheered up at the pool. Is the next step to whacking play?

I wonder if a question to ask Anjali everyday would be to write about or share about what challenged her or to find one thing to do that challenged her.

In other news, I am making good progress in R and data camp.

Saturday, January 6, 2018

The joy of teaching electrical engineering to a 10 year old.

Husband: Anjali, you dont need a breadboard for this. You just need these
Anjali: Ah. I have some here as well
Me: The ones you have are male-female. These are female to femals
Anjali: Whatever
Me: Do you know why these are called male male jumpers?
Anjali: Yup. because they have two pointy ends
Me: And do you know why these are called female-female?
Anjali: Because they have ... nothing.

Thank heavens

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Sophia is starting a new blog!

I am excited to announce today that Sophia is starting a new blog. It is over at check it out!

Anjali's experiment

I had an interesting conversation with Anjali this morning which merits recording. WE were talking about the need for kids to learn to spell (not very high because there are spell checkers) and have good grammar (not very high also) and to write fun stuff (high)

I was telling her that I thought that schools made kids learn rote is because they wanted to train factory workers a hundred years ago.

Me: Imagine a toothpaste factory that needed workers to screw caps on toothpastes. They need to be highly disciplined cap screwers otherwise there wont be good toothpastes

Anjali: Yay! Then we wont need to brush our teeth

Me: Well, then your teeth will get rotten and you cant eat any chocolates

Anjali: Actually no. I did an experiment and didnt brush my teeth for one week. They were still fine afterward.


Monday, August 14, 2017

On cookies and such

So Anjali is making a cookie book. She has it decorated, gets books from the library and copies down only cookie recipes. And makes the cookies. Funny things

"We need to make a fat removing cookie because if we eat all the cookies I bake we will all get fat"

On video conf with thattha
"Why are you cooking?"
"Because my mom doesnt cook properly, so I am cooking"

Anyway, she has baked three batches of cookies last week alone. Anjali has become quite the chatter.

Thattha: When you come to India, we will go to 8 temples
Anjali: I will only go to one temple
Thattha: Why?
Anjali: Because you only came hiking with us to one hill


Me: You dont even give me a glass of water, how will you take care of me when I am old
Sophia: I will give you 20 Quid pocket money each day
Me: But how will that cover my food and housing?
Sophia: I will cook the food. and you will live with me
Me: What if your husband does not like me to live with you?
Sophia: I will kick him if he doesnt.
Anjali: No you dont. You call your sister who will have - no - who has six pack abs to kick him
Sophia: I can kick him myself. unless its something serious then I'll call you
Anjali: like what
Sophia: Like my husband has 12 pack abs I cant kick him.


Sunday, August 13, 2017

Adventures in glass

Over the course of my work, I have gotten to know a lot of good artists. And I have seen something about them. They always make their work seem so easy. Three weeks ago, the girls and I attended a marbling workshop by Garip Ay. He made this lovely painting of an elephant in an african jungle. And I tried to copy it, and my elephant looked like a malformed hippo with a mutation. Ofcourrse Garip did his painting in 10 minutes or so, while I slogged over mine for 45 minutes and then consoled myself by saying that Picasso's elephants didnt look like elephants, but thats besides the point.

 Yesterday, the girls and I visited Anjali Venkat's studio to play with glass. We have known Anjali through three years worth of maker faires, but ofcourse, I never have the opportunity to attend her workshops during the faire on account off fighting random fires and being too tired to go more than a general observation and soaking the spirit after all teh fires are extinguished. When we reached her workshop, there were two women already there spending their Saturday afternoon, both of whom (it gave me a little thril to know), had found out about her studio through maker faire SG and drop in regularly to work and one of whom had been coming in regularly since the 2015 faire. Something nice to know :) It was just simply fun to cut and arrange glass. We learnt to score, cut and shape glass. The objective of the session was ofcourse to make jewellery as gifts for Sabreesh and his wife, and we had previously decides that we wanted to make earrings, a hairclip and a pendant.

Quickly, we distributed work. Sophia, who always takes on projects more challenging than herself, was inspired by the Ganeshas that Anjali had recently posted online and which Sophia wanted to take up. Anjali and I decided to use a lotus theme for the hairclip and the earring

I am surprised by Sophia's artistic ability. I know that she attends art club in school, but I dont have a high opinion of the school clubs, especially since sessions are irregular and break for holidays nd exams and stuff.

Anjali Venkat proposed a design for Ganesha and Sophia counter proposed her design. I proposed a design for the lotus and Sophia proposed another design. We used mine, but Sophia's was better :(

Here is Sophia's Ganesha

After we made our pieces, we decided to make a few more- it is addictive this cutting up glass business, especially since we wont be able to cut glass at home. And obviously, the kids wanted to make stuff for themselves.

Sophia made a beautiful pendant with powdered glass and Anjali made a lovely one with three concentric circles. I played around with layers and tried to make something three dimensional. I'll know how it turns out on Tuesday when it comes out of Anjali's kiln.

We put all out pieces in the kiln. where they will be cooked and fused for 3 hours and then anneal for 24 hours.

We learnt a lot of stuff - how to score glass with a diamond tipped cutter, how to put pressure on the score line and break it up, how to use a grinder (also diamond tipped) to grind the cut glass to smoothen the edges, how to use powdered glass to accentuate the artwork and make it look like glitter, how to soften a thin strip of glass over a hot flame and bend it carefully using a pair of tweezers. And ofcourse chatting with people as we worked.

Rather like Garip's workshop on marble painting, where the girls spent a solid five hours working and not getting bored, they were at Anjali's studio for three solid hours, and would have stayed longer except that Anjali had another appointment and had to leave.

I have to stop writing now. The girls are making pistachio cookes and the kitchen reeks of rose essence. I am supposed to chase Anjali to revise her spelling, but then they learn so much more by making cookies. So we'll get to the spelling when we get to the spelling.