The little cream dress

When I look back on the way I brought up the Bean I am not surprised at the way she’s turned out. Barely 4 days old she was plonked, in her car seat on the table of a car dealership. I sat there and did a dharna because they were not delivering our car. Old readers will remember the post I did with a picture of me stepping out of our new car, holding the barely week old baby.

They were giving the OA the runaround and he, gentleman that he is, was taking it on the chin. I lost my temper, checked out of hospital and limped there, sat down and waited. They were fine until it was the Bean’s feeding time. No doubt I covered up with a dupatta, but it sent them scurrying. It’s amazing how the sight of a nursing child strikes terror in the heart of louses. Anyway, we got our car and that was the first time the Bean was part of a political process. A few days later we wanted to take the Brat for a metro ride so the one month old Bean was slung back on my chest and off we went, getting down in Chandni Chowk for parathas.

But the one that really shocks most people is that we attended a huge global mela at the DND. Noida was a long way off from our house in Delhi but I wanted to go. I’m glad I did, because its been 5 years and the mela never returned. The Bean was about 16 days or so old and I took her in a Maya Wrap. We walked for hours which was a stupid thing, considering I was recovering from a cesarean, the OA carrying the 22 month old Brat. I look back on the trip and I can’t remember having any problems except not finding a bench or chair to sit down to nurse her.

There were stalls from Thailand, Nigeria, Egypt and Dubai, among others. And everyone asked me what the bag hanging around my neck was. I opened it a bit and let them peek in at the tiny baby curled up and saw horror writ large on their faces. Go home, they said, go home and rest. I smiled and walked on. I felt young and invincible and complete. I’d waited so long for my daughter and here she was and it just felt right to keep up the life I was used to. Anyway, I digress. There in the midst of the heat, mosquitoes and dust I saw a beautiful little cream crocheted dress with a chocolate ribbon around the neck. It was at least 3 years too early and frankly too elegant a dress for a child, but I was quite sick of pink and I fell in love with it.

I want that, I pleaded with the OA who was juggling the Brat on his shoulders along with the many packages he was carrying (couldn’t use a stroller because the ground was too uneven). He looked at me with pity in his eyes – clearly his wife had finally lost her mind. The huge dark lady in a turban, manning the stall caught the exchange and quick to make a sale took it down and told me she’d crocheted it herself. Once it was in my hands there was no giving it back. The lady then asked me who I wanted it for and I opened the wrap a crack to show her the tiny, burnt up, sleeping Bean.

That’s all it took. She cut her price by about 50% and gave it to me. I brought the dress home, hung it up in the Bean’s cupboard and waited. And waited. And waited. Because the darn Bean just didn’t grow into it. Finally last year she fitted into it and I wish I’d caught a picture of her then. Summer has come to Delhi and as I put her into the dress this year I realised she’d outgrown it and was looking rather coltish. I felt a little twinge. This was the first outfit I’d bought for the Bean after her birth and in true MM fashion it was completely useless to her right then and bought entirely on a whim. Here’s a picture of her in it, chronicled so that even if I eventually give it away, she can someday read this post and sue me for dragging her around when she was barely able to crack open an eyelid!

On the other hand, maybe she’ll remember that she was brought up to be fuss-free and fun and stay that way.

Telling the Brat off over something I am sure he didn't deserve!


76 thoughts on “The little cream dress

  1. Wow… what a lovely dress.. love love love it. I wish I had a daughter, i would have asked for the dress right now.
    Anyway.. I should have saurabh read this post. He ( actually both of us) are still too scared to travel with the almost 14th month old.

  2. Thats a gorgeous little girl in a gorgeous dress. Love it.
    And kudos to you for being such a great mommy. I have experienced piercing glances for taking my lil 15 days girl to the beach for our anniv dinner πŸ™‚ And lots more …
    Memories πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ beautiful memories…

  3. MM you are so not going to believe this but I went to the DND mela 5 years back and I saw this very dress. I vaguely remember the large lady in the Turban because my mother was born in Kenya and was trying to have a conversation with the lady in Swahili. I remember eyeing the dress and wishing my niece was a bit younger so I could buy the dress for her. This is surreal !

  4. Aw, she looks like she’s part of some drama there! The lady who you bought the dress from would have loved to read this post, I’m sure.

    Whoa and walking around with baby 2 weeks after c-section? I very happily marched off to the library two weeks after mine (sans baby but carrying a sack of books) against my mother’s advice and post-partum bleeding returned with vengeance.

  5. Hats off to you MM!Although we as parents have done the weirdest things.i was carrying r and was on complete bedrest and heavy medication with looming danger of miscarriage.Still I took off for the France trip ignoring all advice.And here she is today hale and hearty and naughty.

  6. Lovely! The dress is truly worth a post, MM.

    Strange, but I do exactly the same. All my life as A’s mother, I have picked up books and clothes (in that order, of course!) for her that she has been too little for. The book/ dress is available just now. Who knows if I’ll find it again at this bargain?! So every time she goes ahead a milestone, there is always something for her that I had set my heart on. And books that belonged to me as a child- my heirlooms for her.

    It goes without saying that I enjoy all those books just as much.:)

    And also thank god for the fact that SHE enjoys books too! :):)

        • Before it goes back to Maddy’s granddaughter can it stay with me, I don’t have a baby girl, but someday I am sure I will, so I am making a reservation now. Please? I totally mean it, I began writing you a mail for this dress and decided to check comments first and realised it’s already taken but no hurry I can wait πŸ™‚

          In the first 6 months of our marriage R and I were in a small second hand book store in Wayanad and I fell in love with this set of books for the alphabet, 1 small book for each alphabet and lots of fun things around that alphabet, I pleaded and pleaded but R didn’t let me pick it then. Hmm. Someone’s gonna get hurt real bad today!!!

            • That’s actually a good idea. The quad has taught me some new moves, I can now swing him and throw him around πŸ˜€

              And do I take it that Antara will pass on this dress to me? * looks at antara, then looks at maddy, and prays fervently*

            • Hey Kusum,
              i will hand it over to MM and you can collect it from her.How mean of us?To think little Bean is still fitting into it.Looks like MM can put this one up for auction.But I have already won the first rights and my little one is already 2.So fair enough.

  7. What a posh little 5 year old I say! Such taste you have!
    And in other news I think I just went and cancelled my trip to Gurgaon tomorrow.. next time maybe!

  8. You know she is going to grow up to be a very, very beautiful woman, don’t you? I have a pale yellow smocked frock with blue- green french knots saved up for my (future) daughter. Picked it up on a whim, 3- 4 years ago.
    Beanie, Beanie, Beanie – so precious you are. Squooshy hugs from this besotted aunt.

  9. Hi MM,

    You must have been crazy to walk around after C section!! The dress is marvelous and Bean is looking like an angel – her eyelashes, hair cut, profile just took my breathe away! GOD bless her dear!! and Brat too

    • 1. koff koff. Might I draw your attention to my nickname? πŸ˜‰ must have been or still am?
      2. Hair cut – this is a mess because she’s been hacking it herself and we’re growing out a boy’s cropped cut.
      3. Profile is a mess like mine – awful stubby nose πŸ™‚

      • Oh yeah dear – i forgot what M stands for πŸ™‚
        she has very good thick hair.. I bet you take very good care… looks very healthy
        I don’t know about your profile. But Bean’s is good πŸ™‚

        • Oh no 😦 She has my shitty hair too. In the entire family only my mother has good hair. Thick and jet black till about 4 years ago. We’re doomed. As for my profile. It’s perfection πŸ˜‰

  10. Thats such a lovely dress and the Bean looks so cute in it!! On an aside, my sister just had a baby and it hit me for the first time how much a baby changes your life. I’ve been telling everyone about how I fell in love with my 5 week nephew in the very second I met him (and I do not even believe in love at first sight, but there you go). Is it strange that I find my baby nephew, the cutest thing in the world and that I want to hold and squish him all the time??

  11. I bought my niece clothes with scholarship money a few years back. They never quite fitted her (I see her once or twice a year, and consequently find it hard to guess accurately). She refuses to give them away.
    This post reminded me of that, somehow. Thank you for making me smile. And that picture is so cute!

  12. Bean looks lovely … and I would have fallen for the dress… no doubt there.

    Recently I went shopping for my girls and found this simple red and white polka dots frock and it was instant love. My girl is 7.5 yrs old and is quite tall for her age … but that didn’t stop me from buying the frock meant for 6 yr olds. Call me crazy … but I just HAD to buy that frock.
    And she wore it last weekend and looked adorable …not for a second I repent buying that frock πŸ˜€

  13. awww this is such a beautiful post…while i cant ask you to save that dress for the kiddo (ahem! the height ;)) ) i will please ask you to keep ALL your saris and ALL your accessories for me lol

    i can see you all this and more if you have one more *koff koff* that walking after c sec and such πŸ™‚

  14. Such a lovely dress and your daughter looks adorable in it! If I can figure out the pattern I’m going to make one for my daughter.

  15. I bought DD a wardrobe full of clothes that would have never fit her when she was a newborn. They included salwar kurtas with elaborate dupattas and jhumkas, ghaghra cholis, pavadais, ridiculously lacy dresses. But she wore every one of them at some point in her life and I have pictures, yay. πŸ™‚ Now i’m saving all of them for the 8 kids she plans to have (I’m hoping all 8 are girls).

    I partied hard after my C-section and moved house and lifted boxes, did it all and don’t regret it. I had a great time and it kept the post partum blues away.

    Also, before I forget – Beanie’s a fashionista, she carries the dress off with aplomb. I almost want to have another daughter so I can borrow the dress from you.

  16. This is such a cute dress.. dont give it away just yet na, she could easily wear it with leggings/tights underneath. That’s what I do for my 5 yr old girl because she’s on the thinner side like the bean, so some of her pretty frocks just get shorter but still fit her and look great with leggings.

  17. Woah! That does take a bit of guts! πŸ™‚

    The dress is gorgeous. Loved it.

    I do buy books for my children, in the hopes that one day, after they are born, they will grow up and read them. πŸ˜›

  18. She looks like the perfect little Diva that she is! Also, this reminds me that I picked up a little purse/ mobile holder for you from Mahabaleshwar over a year and a half ago. After that I kept forgetting to ask your address and then you moved too! Pliss to send me your address over email, although I think that going by little Beanie Diva status, she might just use the purse with one of her wedding party/occasional dresses! Also, I have a hunch you might a few things like that or not care much for it. Pfft! Anyhooo. LOVE the dress for Beanie.

  19. Now this makes me want to squish her even more! πŸ™‚
    She already has a fan following at this age, I can only imagine how many ppl(ahem!) will be going crazy over her in another ten years. Nazar utaaro MM! Bean ki aur apni bhi. Muax to the darling Diva! :* πŸ™‚

      • Some people like me, MM. Not purposefully, of course. You know I envy you for your stubbornness in certain matters, don’t you? Like this one where you walk off to a fair days after your C sec, because you refuse to let the pain take over your life. And you want to share the world with your kids as soon as you can and as often as you can!

  20. That’s a beautiful, beautiful dress, and I wish it came in a larger size for adults too. Bean is rocking it!

    with apologies to many co-commenters, please dont make her wear tights/leggings as yet. they look a tad incongruous on a little girl. at any rate, more incongrous than a shorter-than-should-be-dress. she can wear bloomers underneath instead.

  21. You know it’s odd, but after looking at that photograph, I can totally imagine what the Bean will look like when she grows up, lithe and confident in a Little Black Dress and killer Louboutins.

  22. Such a pretty dress! And the Bean looks like she has such a thick head of hair….you call that thin hair???

    I have an 8 month old niece who I end up buying stuff for all the time….at the end of every shopping expedition I think ‘no more, this kid has too many clothes’ and then I go out and see something adorable and buy it again. Like how I went to Sarojini today and ended up buying a super cute purple cotton dress for her. Sigh! And I keep telling my SIL “Thank god you had a baby girl! She’s so much fun to dress up.”

  23. @MM, Bean might be quite the tom boy but she certainly is a gorgeous one πŸ™‚ and going by your previous post she’s also super smart……

  24. So unfair that you write such a lovely post and post the picture of your little girl in that adorable dress when mommies like me have longed for a girl, and we get a bratty boy!

    Can I have that dress for later, when I might have a girl?

  25. There is a mela that happens in dubai.. global village and there are pavilions from various countries.. I had a similar moment there around 1.5 yrs back.. a cream colored crocheted dress, this African lady was selling.. I got it and gifted my friend’s new born and had been eagerly waiting to see how she looked in that. looking your lil girl in this assures me it wasn’t a bad choice. I think i will ask my friend is she has a pic of her daughter in that dress too…

  26. What is it about second children…they just have to learn to deal with things, because we don’t have the luxury to sit around like we did with the firstborn. When Anjali was 3 weeks old, I started taking Nik to his therapy sessions, five days a week, sometimes two to three sessions a day. I used to call her my waiting room baby. Poor little thing, she certainly got a lot of love and attention from everyone, everywhere. And she grew up spunky, self-aware, nurturing, and bossy, all at the same time πŸ˜‰

  27. Hey there…I’ve been following you from like 2 months and i really love ur blog. Can u please tell me where you bought the maya wrap in India? I heard its not easily available here but if its not i might as well order it from ebay for my sis! πŸ™‚

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