The Eighty-Sixth Chart (Spurts)

June 14, 2013

By Ekta R. Garg

Enjoy these Spurts from the last two weeks, readers!

The girls have enjoyed a full week of summer vacation now, and everyone has enjoyed a more atmosphere around the house.  I didn’t realize until their first full day of break, though, just how relaxed both girls felt.

Last Friday I had a few errands to run and the girls’ grandfather went out for a little while, so I told the kids we would go out for about an hour or so.  I fully expected them to jump at the chance.  After all I figured that they would want to get out of the house.

My errands would amount to an hour, an hour-and-a-half at the most.  It took me almost that long to convince them to go.

“Why do we have to go anywhere?” Six asked, moaning.  “Why can’t we just stay at home?”

I got confused, and I didn’t really know how to respond.  I kind of stumbled through some response about wanting them to have fun or something dumb like that.  They really stumped me with this one.

“Where’s Dadu?” Six continued, referring to their grandfather and the fact that any time I have to run errands the girls often stay at home with him.

“He went out,” I said.  “Come on, we’ll go to Costco, and you can eat snacks.”

Snacks—our buzzword for the samples there.

They agreed reluctantly, but from the time their seatbelts clicked into place they began asking when we would go home.  The “snacks” at Costco managed to divert their attention temporarily, but soon after that I started hearing, “Are we done yet?” again.

The fact that I really only took an hour-and-a-half to go to four or five places failed to impress either of them.  Talk about a tough crowd.


With the beginning of summer vacation, we’ve returned to our vacation ritual of slumber parties every night.  The girls share the bed in Six’s room, and unlike on school nights when they read quietly before bedtime and then go to sleep separately during vacation they’re allowed to talk, giggle, and play long after the sky turns dark.

At some point, however, either my husband or I have to go and let the girls know when “bedtime” has finally arrived.  Earlier this week I went to the kids’ room and told them they had to go to sleep.  They both began offering me excuses about who had kept up whom and who had talked the most, and I told them to turn away their faces away from one another.

Four tried to convince me that Six had played the main instigator, that she had continued to whisper when their dad had given them the first warning several minutes earlier.  I reminded her to turn her face away from her sister and to ignore Six if she tried to whisper.

“Mama, I have an excellent sense of hearing,” Four informed me.  “I have an excellent sense of smell and an excellent sense of hearing.”

Good to know if Superman needs any help with anything.


Several months ago the girls watched the Jaden Smith movie “The Karate Kid.”  Since then Four, in particular, can’t stop talking about the movie.  Or anything related to kung fu (the martial arts form Jaden, as “Dre,” studies in the movie.)  Or Jackie Chan.  Or anything related to China.

“Mama,” she said one day after school, “I’m going to go to China so I can learn kung fu from Jackie Chan.”

Ambitious, this girl is.

She also talks about the scenes in the movie.  Yesterday she asked me whether I thought “Cheng’s team” (the name of the main antagonist in the film) or “Dre’s team” was stronger.  And for those of you who have seen the film, she loves to reenact the scene with the woman balancing on one foot and swaying in front of the snake.

Can we say Four LOVES “The Karate Kid”?

Because we’re moving in a couple of weeks, I’ve spent a lot of time planning and executing the small details of the move.  This includes staying in touch with the school that Four will attend in the fall, and earlier this week I got an email from the school talking about language classes.  At the kindergarten level the school offers a choice of two languages.  The first choice was Spanish.

Points to those of you who can guess what the other language was.  Bonus points to all of you who can guess what I told the school Four wanted to study in the fall.

Yesterday as I helped Four get dressed after her shower I told her that when she started at her new school she would learn Chinese.  She began bubbling like a soda.  Now if she feels any apprehension about going to her new school, I can just remind her that she’ll learn the same language that Jackie Chan spoke in the movie.  She could become a kung fu master by the time she finishes kindergarten.

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