The One Hundred-and-Ninth Chart (Spurts)

December 13, 2013

By Ekta R. Garg

Enjoy these Spurts from the last two weeks, readers!

Last Saturday we braved the cold temperatures (we’re regularly hitting highs in the 20s here!) and went to a local art gallery.  The group art classes Seven and Five took for the last two months culminated in an exhibition where the dozens of students who took classes this term got to see their work on display like professional artists.  Given the fact that Five has had a love-hate relationship with the classes this entire time and Seven has managed to show us something just above indifference, I think the adults in the house showed more excitement about the exhibit than the kids.  But after some cajoling, they agreed to go.

We walked around the gallery for a little bit, both kids giving us the facial equivalent of a shrug, and then we decided to go out to lunch and then the mall.  The kids perked up considerably at the mention of lunch out, and they got even more excited when my husband suggested Chipotle.  With Five’s newfound love for quesadillas, we can now include Mexican restaurants in our dining options.

I brought everyone’s food, and Seven looked pointedly at my plate.

“Mamma, what’s that?”


Seven turned to my food basket.  “Hello, tacos.”  She waited a beat and then turned back to me.  “Mamma, the tacos aren’t talking to me.  Shouldn’t they talk to me?  Get it?  Tah-cos?”

Ah, those crazy puns.


Later after lunch as we strolled through the mall, I walked with Five hand in hand.  At one point she turned to me and said, “Millions of years ago there was a man named Tchaikovsky.”

I waited for her to say something else, share something about the composer’s work, but she seemed content with the single statement.

“Do you know what he did?” I asked, wanting to jog her memory and bring forth the rest of what I was sure was a lesson from music class.


“He used to make beautiful music,” I said.

“I already knew that.”

I stifled the urge to laugh.  “If you already knew it, then why did you say you didn’t?”

She didn’t even bother with a shrug.  “I forgot.”

Five years old, and she’s already got so much knowledge that she even forgets what she knows.


One morning Five got ticked off at me for something, although I can’t remember what now.  The funny thing about Five is that when something sets her off, suddenly the entire world becomes her enemy.  For instance, one day she tripped and just managed to catch herself but knocked her elbow against the wall in the process.  She didn’t hit her elbow too hard, but it did startle her.  When I opened my arms for a hug and asked her if she was okay, she suddenly stated with tears cresting that she wished we’d never moved into this house.

See?  Just a touch melodramatic.

As we got ready for school one day, I scolded Five for something.  A few minutes later I told her I loved her.  She told me flat out that she didn’t believe me.

Seven came into the room and felt her sister’s bad mood broadcasting across the entire second floor.  When she asked me what happened, I told her.

“It’s just a phrase, Mamma, she’ll get over it,” Seven reassured me with the patience and experience of someone who has seen this many times before.  I didn’t have the heart to tell her the actual word is “phase” and not “phrase,” though.  I was enjoying her reassurance too much.


With temperatures plunging the way they are this winter, sometimes it’s hard to keep skin soft and moisturized.  I have dry skin to begin with, and with winter temperatures I have to remind myself that much more often to use hand cream.

One day I examined my dry hands and tried to scrape off a scrap of skin.  Five watched me for a few moments and then said, “If you put lotion on that, then it won’t do that.”

There you go.  Skincare advice from the newest beauty consultant.  It’s easy for her to recommend lotion when she’s still got cheeks as soft as silk.

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