Childhood Memories I am thankful for


Indian Bloggers

I came across this prompt on Amrita and Deepa’s Thankful Thursday’s. I loved it the moment I read it but wasn’t getting around to put it down. That is when I read about #Tiniature on Twitter and decided to work on that with this theme.

Childhood Memories

In a way, I am thankful that my childhood memories do not include gadgets and expensive toys as it was through these memories that I discovered kindness and humanity.

There were no mobiles then, but still, somehow we managed to communicate and there was never a worried moment for my parents, caused by non-communication. We didn’t even have a landline for a long time and giving out a PP phone number was okay, but it came with a long list of do’s and don’ts. Interestingly, these lists did teach me to think from other’s perspective. There were no maps but we never got lost. We relied on the knowledge of helpful rickshaw drivers, the traffic policeman, and others.

I traveled alone to school right from my primary schooling days. Went in a public transport, but was never worried as I knew the streets were filled with guardian angels. I didn’t know about the evils of the society but have experienced numerous instances where these guardian angels came in and swooped me away from any possible harm. In most cases, these were strangers who considered a child as a collective responsibility. That was a time when people were watchful about their surroundings and weren’t lost in their mobile world.

It was a time when strangers didn’t think twice before questioning someone’s intent and if anybody questioned, ‘Why are you bothered?’ the instant reply was ‘Hamari beti hai’ Though the nosy neighbor was annoying, she would keep an eye if your child went out alone. The local grocer would be watchful till you turned into your lane if you came to buy something alone.

Those were the days when for every single evil there were a hundred angels. Today we have progressed a lot but the human connect seems missing. How I wish we could have a happy blend of both the world’s so that my children could enjoy an equally carefree childhood.

 

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Update – This post went on to be the winning post for the prompt! Yay!! Super happy 🙂

Vacation and Homework

This is a series where I give a peek into my family – A gang of doers
I am a Digital Marketer who works from home and at any given point in time is oscillating between being a supermom and a train wreck. Hubby dear is a cool guy with a mean neatness streak! On any given day he would prefer keeping things organized and cleaning up instead of taking his kids to the park or mingling with people! Darling daughter is still undecided if she wants to be a Diva or a Dangal girl, and the result is that I am either keeping her accessories away from my brat or being a referee between her and my younger kiddo. The youngest in the family is my brat who has learned the art of deception quiet early and hence though he looks saintly, there is a manipulative side somewhere underneath. That’s me and my family.


vacation and homework

Vacation means fun for kids and melting point for mum

 

This is a major bone of contention between me and my DD. She believes in doing everything at the last-minute and me knowing, how those last minutes are, prefer getting it done before she gets on with her fun activities.

Me: Let’s get done with your summer homework before our yearly family vacation begins. We can get it done in 10 days

DD- But we still have 15 days before the vacation starts so I will do what I like for the next 5 days ( read watch TV and while away her time)

ME- It’s 10 days before vacation starts, let’s get done with your homework.

DD- Whips out the homework list from her closet and starts reading aloud. For number 1 and 2 you need to bring me x,y,z things. For 4 and 5 we need your laptop and internet. 6 and 7 are kinda boring and I am in no mood to do that now. 8 and 9 are story reading and I am done with that.

ME (gingerly)– Let’s start with number 3 and 10 then? That’s maths and you enjoy doing that.

DD– Keeps looking at the paper with squint eyes trying to make them disappear magically.

My DD when asked about homework

It’s 3 days before vacation and we are nowhere near homework completion

ME – (Voice raised) I want you to start taking the homework seriously and get it done. There is no TV time till then.

DD – (with innocent face and tears ready to spill out at the twitch of a nose) You just don’t want me to enjoy my holidays. None of my friend’s mom does this to them.

Husband – (Casually flipping between channels) Don’t get so worked up. She will do it later.

It’s 1 day before the vacation begins

ME –  Why can’t you get the homework done. You can then enjoy the rest of the vacation without any worries.

DD – (Looking at the page and then turning to me in a huff) It’s only because of you that I can’t finish things on time. Why didn’t you remind me earlier!

ME – (Rolling my eyes) I give up!

A doctor who is inspiring a town #HappyDoctor’sDay


Indian Bloggers

Recently I traveled to Sirsi, Karnataka via a road trip. A beautiful town strategically located near many local tourist attractions, it is a must-visit for all those looking for a relaxed vacation in nature’s lap.

When I was there, I met Dr. Ravikiran Patwardhan a third generation, Ayurvedic doctor. A simple dispensary and clinic as an extension of his house, it has been operational for nearly 100 years. I even toured their Botanical Garden that was created by his great-grandfather with Ayurvedic plants essential for making medicines. With the foresight of avoiding a shortfall of ingredients while making medicines, his great-grandfather established this garden. 

Donating blood for the with time

Today, Dr. Ravikiran Patwardhan is carrying forward the same legacy of helping his town with various schemes and ideas that he has implemented. When I visited his clinic, I saw a fat diary on the table. It was divided into various blood groups. Feeling curious I enquired about the same, to know that this is a community help blood donor list. Whenever someone is in need of blood, they come to him and register themselves as a future donor when called upon. They are then given at least 5 working contacts of the people from the blood group they want. The person requiring the blood can then contact these people and they come and donate blood. I found this idea extremely simple yet powerful. A kind of barter system which helps the society as a whole. This list has saved numerous lives, and a testimony of that can be seen in appreciation and feedback that he has received.

Another interesting idea that I saw was, a prescription which had all the emergency services and their numbers listed at the back. He explained that prescriptions are usually never thrown away by patients and hence having a list of emergency services at the back of it helps patients when they need it the most. This too is a powerful idea as the back of the prescription pad is usually wasted, and having these numbers there is the best utilization of space. Many sponsors too have come forward to bear the cost of printing in return for a small advertising space.

As I got talking with him, he explained that apart from this, a few doctors from the town have come together to donate blood and hold workshops. The workshop’s are held on various topics like de-addiction, drug abuse, home remedies and future planning.

This doctor’s day, a salute to such numerous souls who are going beyond their call of duty and  working towards betterment of society. #HappyDoctorsDay

Unlikely unwinding destinations


Indian Bloggers

The other day my daughter teased, “Hey Mom, now all of us will go out of the house in the morning, me and brother to school and dad to the office. You will be alone in the house.” While I muttered under my breath “You have no clue how desperately I have been waiting for this” Yup! With two kids your house is never quiet, especially as long as both are not in formal school. My younger one will start preschool this year and I have been so waiting for it. He in school will mean two hours of peace at home, well not exactly because I will be motoring through to finish chores and blog posts before he is back, but still it is better than not getting done anything in the whole day.

Unusual unwinding places

The Bathroom

If you are a mother of two, you know there is no peace or ‘me time’ anywhere in the house, except the bathroom. The bathroom is my hiding place when things are getting out of hand and I need a breather. When the going is good, I can actually think, maybe even read a book (at least a few pages) and check on my social media while in the bathroom. And then there are times when the moment I enter the bathroom one of them want something from the bathroom or have some questions that just can’t wait till I come out of the bathroom.

The Car

Another place is my car! I leave to pick the kids and take the longest possible route to have some ‘me time’ with music on. This helps me think, focus and even relax before the next rush hour starts. As it is with two kids, you are always running errands for one or the other, the best way to utilize that time is unwinding.

The Balcony

The balcony is another place where I like to unwind. When the kids are busy watching Television, I sneak in the balcony and do nothing. Just enjoy the fresh air, see the on-goings around and do absolutely nothing. So when I am really worked up, I turn on the kid’s channel (my kids won’t move an inch when that damn thing is turned on) and sneak out in the balcony. I know docs might not agree with TV time, but for my sanity, I need that break 😛
Do you have such unwinding places? What are those? I would love to be inspired.

😀


I am writing this post for #Barathon from Blogarhythm with the theme seven situations unique to a mother of two.

There is no dearth of Hugs and Kisses

Okay now, this is one mushy-mushy post! If you have two children, especially with one being a daughter, there is no dearth of kisses and hugs, seriously! My kids are always in a competition of who kisses and hugs the most. The beneficiary is ‘yours truly’ but at times it can have hilarious outcomes too.

Most of the times I enjoy those free, no frills attached hugs and kisses, however, there are times when they just go overboard. It usually starts with one hugging or kissing me, then suddenly the other one decides to outdo the other and gives double the hug or kiss, eventually making me beg them to stop!

Then there are times when the older one has hugged me and then she realizes that the younger one hasn’t so she murmurs into his ear that he should say ‘I love you Mama’ and hug me. The obedient sheep that my son is, he immediately sets about completing the task, only to realize that I am in the washroom. That’s when he will start calling out my name with urgency in his voice. I rush out only to find this guy leaning over the door and hugging me the moment I open the door.

At times my daughter has this urge of showing off in front of her friends. She doesn’t need a reason for it, it could be anything – something sent in the Tiffin, her project that I helped with or some class that I have allowed her to join. She will get out of the school bus and hug me saying ‘My mom did this and this, I love you momma’ and her friends will try and imitate her, thereby leading to a full blown hugging session at the bus stop, with all children hugging their mom’s.

The fun part is because my daughter has done this in front of my son, though she may outgrow it in a year or two, my son will probably continue it for some more time, thereby making me a very happy Mom!

Always ready with a hug or kiss

 

 

A house Spick and Span, What’s that?

My theme is seven and the series is seven situations unique to a mother of two

The fifth situation is that your house is never beautiful


So you are proud of your housekeeping skills? Are your homes good enough to be on the cover page of Good Homes? Chances are you don’t have two children under eight! If you have two children at home, forget about having a spick and span house. I know there are people who have two children and still manage to have a beautiful house, personally, I just believe they are superhumans and one in a million. For mere mortals like me, it’s a herculean and never ending task.

Nothing in it’s place

When the children are at home, there is hardly anything that is in its place. Toys will be found everywhere except the toy storage. Playing or not, they have to be on the floor! The moment you pick them up, one of them will come looking for it. If not toys, then even the kitchen utensils will do! In the morning rush hour when the tiffins need to go on time, my younger one has the urge to get the whole kitchen down!

house will be unclean and messy

PC- Pixabay

Twin’s or Children with less age gap

If you don’t want to be in the eye of a raging storm, never tell a mom of twins or with less age gap that her house isn’t that clean. The poor woman can only manage so much. I have friends who just wish to get done with the day and hit the bed as all they ever do in the initial years is feed, put to bed, soothe a crying baby or clean. The kids just keep going in cycles and without help, it’s a daunting task. Hell, with just one kid at a time, I am so disheveled, my house help looks better than me!

Age gap of four or more

If the age gap is more, it’s still not a better story. By the time you have taught your older child to put things in place, the younger one is old enough to throw them around, so basically your house is a perpetual mess till both of them are at least seven years old and that my friend is a long time. Currently, building house with pillows has caught my younger one’s fancy, so all the pillows in the house are in the living room at any given point in time. Why the living room you ask? Because cushions from the sofa are fundamental in making a good cushion/pillow house. My pleas, begging, shouting, even an occasional whack as resulted in zero improvements and now I have made peace with a pillow land that I call my living room.

 

I am linking this post to #BarAThon 2017 hosted by BlogARhythm

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It is always Mom v/s Kids

My theme is seven and the series is seven situations unique to a mother of two

The fourth situation is whatever the situation it’s always Mom v/s Kids!


Imagine your children are fighting tooth and nail as if the whole world’s survival depends on it, you walk in and try to resolve the issue, thereby ensuring the house does not collapse around your ears. End of story right? NO! The moment you jump in to try and resolve the matter so that your children don’t bite off each other’s heads, it somehow turns on you. They find some unexplainable way, wherein you are at fault and suddenly both of them are on the same team! The weird thing is when they say it; even you believe that it was indeed your fault!

it's always mom versus the kids

photo credit Pixabay

Never get into their fights

That’s the biggest lesson I have learned from my experience. The moment my children start fighting, I just call for a timeout – bark instructions to keep both of them at two ends of the house and at times even throw in a punishment or two, but never ever ask them the cause. Asking for cause is inviting trouble. You will have to listen to both the sides with both of them shouting at the same time, you will not make head or tail of the problem because usually there is none and finally you will be labeled a difficult mother who never understands. The worst is if you pass a judgment where you blame one child for something, suddenly the other child will come to his defense, console him/her saying “don’t worry I understand, Mom doesn’t get it” and the likes. And you start to wonder why in the first place did you get into this mess?

Mom-bashing doesn’t need a reason

Say you are trying to get your younger one to eat some veggies and by virtue of trying to bolster the older one’s image and make her feel good you give her example. “See how your sister eats everything on her plate, She is a strong girl because she eats everything without complaining” You would expect a beaming smile from the older one, but nine out of ten times, she will quip “That is because you made me eat everything when I was young, just like you are making him eat!” And so the mom-bashing starts with both exchanging notes of how mom made them eat all kinds of things without considering their choices. Or how she makes the same old things and never tries anything new.
The darn television ads don’t make your life easy, especially those savory and chocolate ads. The moment those ads run, children will note the virtues of that product and repeat it to you asking why you don’t let them eat such ‘good things’ daily.

Did you ever experience such things? How did you manage without being sucked into it?

I am writing this post for Blogarhythm’s BarAThon 2017

You acquire new skills like being a detective and selective listening

My theme is seven and the series is seven situations unique to a mother of two

The third situation is where you acquire new skills like being a detective!


Yup! If you are a mom of two, you are a part detective. Once the kids grow old enough and learn the art of offering selective information you turn detective. It’s not like they wish to malign the other or have any darker motive; it’s simply the way how they see the situation or problem. The age I am talking about is 6+ years so it isn’t too far away.

mother's are a part detective

Initial Years

Till the younger one can’t figure things out, he is the usual culprit as by then the Child 1 has learned this art and is dying to try it out on someone, so the obvious scapegoat is his/her little sibling. Aren’t they younger? It’s their moral duty to be guinea pigs for all future experiments from older siblings seem to be the thought process. So right from ‘Who spilled the milk?’ to ‘Who latched the door?’ all fingers will point to the younger child and as the younger one is oblivious to this (and too young to argue) things will go smoothly. However, after one or two incidents, the detective in you will arise from his slumber and henceforth every incident will be scrutinized.

Later Years

By now child two will also hone his skills in selective information sharing. In these years, both will come to you with a fight and each will vociferously blame the other for the situation. So if the milk is spilt because the older one came rushing in and pushed the table, Kid 1 will see it as Kid 2’s fault as he didn’t drink it quick enough and is always lazing around and Kid 2 will see it as Kid 1 always runs around the house spoiling/spilling the younger one’s things… so on and so forth, you get the drift.

This is the time when a Mom earns the skills of selective listening. I blame both for their individual shortcomings and get them to clean up together. This helps not being sucked into another debate of ‘you always side with the other’ however be ready for a lot of whining where both discuss and declare that ‘Mom always finds ways to make us work!’ or any other colorful ideas that the children might be nursing on that particular day.

Linking this post to #BarAThon hosted by BlogARhythm 

 

Each child feels ignored

My theme is seven and the series is seven situations unique to a mother of two
The second situation is both the children feel they are ignored or not loved enough


Fighting the accusation You don't love me enough

 

If you are a mom of two, you have had this conversation quite a few times. Whatever the age gap both the children believe that they are ignored and how much ever you try convincing them otherwise, it will have no effect. You will just keep going round in circles with no results.

You Don’t Love Me Enough

This is the first allegation that you will counter once the new baby arrives. The first kid will feel left out, especially with the new baby’s feed – sleep cycle the older child will feel ‘mumma’ spends the most time with the baby and dad goes to work, so nobody cares for them. My kid had high expectations when the second one arrived. She assumed that we will take the baby to play area from day one and she could ‘play’ (read running and hide-n-seek with the baby) So, you can imagine her disappointment when she realized that all the baby did was eat – sleep- cry- repeat. Not even the cute smiles that television ads show-off! She even suggested that as the baby wasn’t doing much and was kinda boring we should think of returning him! As if babies come with a 30-day return policy!

Initially, I felt maybe I was doing something wrong and was to be blamed for this feeling in my older kid, but then I heard experiences from other mom’s and realized this is a natural phase that the child goes through. They require time to accept the presence of this new human being.

All good things happened when Bhaiyya was a baby!

This is what you will hear from the younger ones. There are more photos and videos of the older one, there are more celebrations, better toys (the younger one usually gets hand-me-down’s especially costly toys) Their ‘nakhras’ aren’t taken that seriously! Reason’s are numerous, but generally, it does happen. It doesn’t mean we love the younger child any less. It’s just that we have learned a few lessons in life.  But explaining that to the child is next to impossible.

Below is a conversation that three children in the age group of 5-7 were having at the school bus-stop. Two are older kids and the other is a younger sibling. “Kid 1 – Since the baby has arrived nobody seems to love me. Kid 2- Don’t worry! Things will be okay in a few days. Kid 3 (who is younger) – Yeah, don’t worry in a few months they won’t love that baby also!!”

It was funny to realize that children too discuss parents just as parents discuss their children! But it also made me realize that children do compare notes and try and use their friend’s advice at home, just like parents. So if my kid comes with this ‘You don’t love me enough story, with large innocent eyes, I know there is something else at play!’
So, if you are planning to have child two, brace yourself for many ‘Dhara Ad’ like moments! Remember the ad, where the child says ‘Sab gussa kar rahe hai, main ghar chod ke jaa raha hu!” You might feel all mushy, but also remember the kids are darn smart and do know how to play the emotional card.

I am linking this post to #BarAThon from Blogarhythm Season 2

Life of a referee

My theme is seven and the series is seven situations unique to a mother of two

The first situation that I am going to talk about today is being a referee


You must have heard that if there is a sister or a brother, you don’t need a friend and I have experienced the same first hand, so I can vouch for it, however, all this is true once the children are old enough to understand intense emotional feelings. Till then, for a mother, it’s a long career of being a referee or an umpire. The moment you become a mother, the second time you have to gear up for this position. It doesn’t matter if the kid 2 is only a baby and goes gaga, goo the whole day; there will be some obscure way by which your kid 1 is annoyed and you are summoned to ensure peace.

If the age difference isn’t much and they are either two girls or two boys, there is a different problem. Child 1 will automatically get territorial and there will be a verbal or non-verbal war about who owns Mumma! (read who gets the most attention) and somehow you end up doing a lot of explaining and cajoling of how the time and attention is being given equally to both. They won’t understand or accept however you will keep trying to avoid the house from falling around your ears.

A mother of two is more of a referee

If the age gap is enough where the older sibling is at an age where he can act responsibly, suddenly all the love and anticipation related to the arrival of child 2 will vanish and you will have to answer some weird questions, like “Who decided that I will get a baby brother?” “I don’t like this baby, please go and get it exchanged!” There won’t be open fights in such a scenario, but minor skirmish that you will know exactly who started but have no evidence to pinpoint! Yeah! Well, you even turn into a part detective, but more about it later. And if you try accusing one child of starting it, that child will sulk and other will blame you for hurting the sentiments!

So, you end up having a long career of being an umpire where your decisions are seen with suspicion, nobody is ever happy with you and somehow both believe that you favor the other as if this wasn’t a family but an India-Pakistan match!

Do you have two children? What have been your experiences?

I am writing this series and linking it up with Blogarhythm’s BARATHON 2nd edition