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Little time saving tricks

With managing toddlers, every 10 mins saved count. Here are my tips & tricks that I have learnt in my last 4 years of mommyhood.

  1. Travelling- Every time you return home, re-stock the diaper bag with everything you have used in this travel. Wet wipes, diapers, wash cloth, anything at all. Chances are when you are going out next, you would be glad you have saved 10 mins in not having to pack the diaper bag afresh. Buy smaller packs of biscuits/ juices/ chips/ cremes/ wipes etc. This way you can discard when free & don’t have to refill after every travel.
  2. Change/ diaper caddy- Children have accidents (throw up milk while crying or coughing up, bed wetting, drop water/ milk on themselves) which requires a change of clothes. Searching for a fresh set, in the middle of the night when you are groggy & bone tired, can be a task. What I have practised with both my kids is to make a small overnight wicker basket for night which has a diaper, wet wipes, 1 set of clothes & under clothes which I take to the bedroom each night. If I end up using anything from it, I just replenish it for the next day. This also gives an opportunity for my husband to change the kids in the night if need be. And isn’t that awesome 😉
  3. Organise things- Have a small basket for all toiletries which you carry to the place/room where the kids get ready from a bath. This means I take out all required things – talc/ mosturiser, comb & hair brush/ diaper rash cream, hair oil- (all the works) in one go & return them at one go, when I am done.
  4. Sorting- You may be surprised like me  since I learnt this by chance, when I saw my 2 yr. old daughter practise this. Girls are naturally attracted towards sorting, and you can keep a kid busy sorting same colour crayons, blocks, beads, (the smaller the better as they take more time picking it up 😉 but only if the child can play with it safely without putting it in her mouth). This activity can easily buy you 10 minutes before your child gets bored or figures out your trick 😀
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Life is in the pauses

photo credit: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/ybrad/6282838201/">shingleback</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/">cc</a>

photo credit: shingleback via photopin cc

Once you become a parent, your life is a whirlwind. It sets into motion the day your baby arrives & just keeps on gathering speed each passing day, as you move from night time feeds, to baby food, to pre-school morning rush to school homework to boards exams to entrance tests and so on…..

As a parent you keep defying logic & keep telling your body she’s not tired, the puffy eyes are just because of a late night you had yesterday, or that the weekend was unusually occupied, it’s just a passing phase and what not. But after a few years, when the euphoria of becoming new parent, buying new baby clothes & setting up the nursery is all done, long after people stop congratulating you, and you realise that this is it; your life is irreversibly changed; you are a PARENT for life!!!

This is when you start asking every young couple around you with young kids when does life become the old life you knew? They all tell you it’s just for a few more years, just hang onto it.

This is what I have been convincing myself & my husband, that the present treadmill of our lives is just a passing phase. Soon the kids will be more independent & responsible, and things will ease out.

I reaslied, all that shall happen when the kids have grown old! Oh oh. But can’t they continue to be cute & cuddly & wanting  forever, while being responsible & independent? Ya, right, as though that can happen. So let’s enjoy the pauses we can catch, between the teeth brushing & bath, the Sunday morning laziness, the afternoon naps together or the splashing in the bath-tub. This is where the childhood is hidden between the chores & the rush.

Too soon these babies, who can’t walk without assistance & have to be hand fed, will be asking for your car keys & have an independent life of their own. They would need you to provide for them, but not need your support in everything.

 

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Skill set of a new momma Part -2

With every day as your kid/s blossom, you and your skills also continue to grow.

Skill set of a new momma Part -2

  1. You shall not tire- Even if you are on your feet for 8 hours straight; you shall still attend to your babies’ every need before you can hit the bed.
  2. You shall have enviable enhanced physical strength levels- With a laptop bag, a diaper bag, a grocery bag & a school bag, you still have the strength to carry your crying toddler is she so desires 🙂 .
  3. You shall sleep uninterrupted only during night (if you get lucky) and with 1 eye open and for years to come.
  4. You shall be able to multi-task, eat, talk, run after one kid, and make the other one brush her teeth simultaneously. These variables will constantly change, but the talent of multi-tasking shall remain a constant in your life.
  5. All food shall taste the same- Everything you eat shall be eaten in a rush, already cold since you spent 45 minutes in feeding your toddler, and since you would have lost interest in it long back, it will all taste the same.
  6. You shall master the art of putting together an ensemble in under 5 minutes, and still manage to look wow 🙂 .
  7. You shall have only 10 minutes in the bathroom- Manage whatever you can in this time. See I asked you to learn to prioritise 🙂 .
  8. You shall know new feelings- Unwavering loyalty, fierce love, protectiveness, possessiveness, irrationality, irritability and they just keep adding over the years….
  9. You shall feel complete happiness like you have never known before 😀
  10. You shall find a deeper meaning to your bond with your spouse- Your husband becomes more than what he was before, he is now a, partner in your good-cop-bad-cop routine, the soundest shoulder to rest your weary head on, someone who will always squeeze out extra strength to change the bed sheets at 3 am in the morning when you child soils them, who will share the pride, joy & pains of parenthood with you every moment of the journey.

Here’s my older post in case you missed it 🙂 

 

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Advice I would have given myself in my first pregnancy

Yeah yeah, aren’t all first time moms given advice by anyone and everybody. In fact I feel that it is a tradition, which unfortunately I am a culprit of having given into. See, I have understood that as first time mom you may hate when people give you advice on everything- how to breastfeed, make the baby sleep, burp, bathe, change, when to start solids, weaning…blah blah. And try hard as you may, you can’t avoid it. So, you have to vent out this baggage you received, by becoming just one of what you didn’t want to, and dish out advice when you see a new first time mom 🙂 . Simple. And thus the tradition continues.

Advice I would have given myself in my first pregnancy

But, jokes apart, if I were to give some sensible advice to myself, this would be it-

1. Rest before delivering- you’ll never have ME time again for the next 5 yrs. It’s so true. Especially if you are planning to have more than one kid. Rest as much as you can before delivering. Just stay in bed & relax, enjoy, do everything which is not a chore or a task on your to-do list, by becoming a parent you’ve signed up for a lifetime of doing that already.

2. Rest after delivering- yup. That’s the natural progression. Get all the pampering, sleep in late, be lazy, get massages, stay in for the convalescing period, let others do the household work, you don’t have to bathe your new born from day one, you’ll have years to do it 🙂

3. Eat without a thought- you’re still nourishing another soul, and lactation is the only time, second to pregnancy, when you can eat as much as you can. You always have a legitimate excuse of an expanded waistline 🙂

4. Become BLIND to the household- everyone else is an adult or not-a-new mom. They can take care of themselves without you wanting to assist/manage everything.

5. Sleep when the baby sleeps- for once listen to what the older women (who are still on the advice giving trip), & don’t use this time to catch up on chores & tasks & bathing & organising. Sleep. Once the world knows you are fit to manage yourself & the baby, all help is withdrawn, and you have to actually manage everything. So savour this time.

6. Get massages done- Yes, the midwives knew what they were talking about. Go get pampered. Those daily massages get your tummy in & your spirits up :). It takes away the weariness from the birthing process, lack of sleep, and gives your body and mind the much needed relaxation.

It took me my second pregnancy to understand & appreciate the deeper meaning of all these sayings & advices, and since I was staunchly not willing to take any advice from others, I wish I could’ve written this post for myself earlier 🙂 .

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Don’t rush a child

Every morning is a race against time. When my whole household is running to get my daughter school in time (and this is just a Montessori class), I get light headed thinking how will we ensure she boards the school bus which arrives half hour earlier!!!

We have a forty minute window to get the kid awake, finish her milk, bathe, get ready & have whatever little she can for breakfast, & run to get in the car, to reach school in time. All the while, seeking out a clock in whichever part of the house we are in, and praying that it ticks slower. The words that get repeated like a prayer, every day, are ‘we’re getting late’, ‘we have to rush’, ‘there is no time’….and the likes.

Once we are ready, we have to rush to the car & put on the seat belt & then drive off, hoping that the gods will hold the time still & we’ll reach school in time, and don’t have to cut a sorry figure in the school as a late comer.

In all this wild dash, one day, I forced myself to just stop & observe my daughter, & I was taken aback at what I saw.

Don’t rush a child

Like a child her age, she was blissfully ignorant of the pressure we felt all around us. I am sure if she were older, she would have said ‘What’s all this fuss about mom?’.

When she wakes up, she would laze in the bed pretending she’s asleep while actually wanting to be kissed, then savour her milk, then play with the water in the bath tub because to a three & a half year old kid its funny to throw bubbles at her mom & make her wet, and all the while chatting about the silly things her little brother does…. Then while getting ready, she would tell me tales about her school friends, how one kid is very naughty, or fights with others, or whatever captures her little world. Then she would climb down the stairs hopping on each one, reach the car & insist on using the keys to unlock the door, acting all grown up…… On the way, she would observe if it’s a sunny day, or a cloudy one, how the flag atop a building is dancing in the wind, what she will tell her teachers when she reaches school & what not…..

Show me one adult, who savours every minute & everything this life offers. Its only kids who are so engrossed in their life & so happy in what they have.

 

I now believe its criminal to rush a child & deprive them of these pleasures that only they can enjoy. Because, it’s not theirs, but our inability to manage time, that we feel the need to rush them. Too soon they will be grown up & be consumed with work, gadgets, gossip & all materialistic things that we are addicted to. Let us let them be, for however long we can, and not rush them into becoming us.

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Momma anthem- Songs written for a mother

Songs are soothing & fun to listen to, but suddenly some songs make you feel they have captured just what you are feeling. Here’s a song which is from Shania Twain, a singer & lady I greatly admire (equally for her beauty & her talent), which was always one of my favourites, but recently has become more of an anthem. I hope you like it too…

 

 

“Honey, I’m Home”

The car won’t start-it’s falling apart
I was late for work and the boss got smart
My pantyline shows-got a run in my hose
My hair went flat-man, I hate that
Just when I thought things couldn’t get worse
I realized I forgot my purse
With all this stress-I must confess
This could be worse than PMS

This job ain’t worth the pay
Can’t wait ’til the end of the day
Honey, I’m on my way
Hey! Hey! Hey! Hey!

Honey, I’m home and I had a hard day
Pour me a cold one and oh, by the way
Rub my feet, gimme something to eat
Fix me up my favorite treat
Honey, I’m back, my head’s killing me
I need to relax and watch TV
Get off the phone-give the dog a bone
Hey! Hey! Honey, I’m home!

I broke a nail opening the mail
I cursed out loud ’cause it hurt like hell
This job’s a pain-it’s so mundane
It sure don’t stimulate my brain

This job ain’t worth the pay
Can’t wait ’til the end of the day
Honey, I’m on my way
Hey! Hey! Hey! Hey!

Honey, I’m home and I had a hard day
Pour me a cold one and oh, by the way
Rub my feet, gimme something to eat
Fix me up my favorite treat
Honey, I’m back, my head’s killing me
I need to relax and watch TV
Get off the phone-give the dog a bone
Hey! Hey! Honey, I’m home!

Oh, rub my neck will you

Honey, I’m home and I had a hard day
Pour me a cold one and oh, by the way
Rub my feet, gimme something to eat
Fix me up my favorite treat
Honey, I’m back, my head’s killing me
I need to relax and watch TV
Get off the phone-give the dog a bone
Hey! Hey! Honey, I’m home!

I’m home, that feels much better

If you like her songs, here are some of the Top songs of Shania Twain which make a good listening