Monday, December 31, 2012

2012-The Year That was

As I spend the last day of the year 2012, bundled up in my razai to beat the Delhi chill, I can't help but become nostalgic. I always do that on the 31st of December, now it has become a ritual. So the year that passed by brought with it a mixed bag of emotions. Some people believed, we would not exist no longer once 2012 is over... that didn't happen which was an amazing thing.

I had some amazing moments and some not so good moments. Before I go into the positives or negatives. I would like to thank Allah (SWT) for making 2012 a good year for me. Thanks for my family who have been my strongest support base (Fizz n The Toddler), I don't want anything more if I have the two of them with me. I thank you for good health, though my knee is still in a bad shape, but that is more because of my negligence. And I thank for every thing nice that I have in life... (Genuinely)

Let's see what were the good things that happened in 2012:
  1. I became a better mom, and Fizz was at his best being The Toddler's daddy
  2. We went for 2 holidays (Pondicherry & Shimoga)
  3. I started My Little Chatterbox in Bangalore & our 2nd session is about to begin in January Insh'Allah. I have also discovered what is the best way to work from home. I go out for my trainings/meetings, besides that most of the work is done at home. The Toddler has also become used to my working at home and doesn't disturb me much. My work also helped me socialize more, and made me meet new people.
  4. I'm in love with Bangalore now... I will have to say I have to explore many places still. 2012 did help me become familiar with the city
  5. 2012 saw the Toddler turn into a Tot from a little baby. She turned 2 years old on 26th November 2012 and she is now a big girl. She met all her milestones before time, and I'm so proud of you Missie. The Toddler also got admitted in a school the 3 of us love, she starts school from June 2013.
  6. We did manage to watch more movies this year, Talaash tops the list, I didnt want to miss this one...and I didnt
  7. I did start working out 2 times a day
Not so good things:
  1. I have become extremely paranoid as far as The Toddler is concerned, thanks to the events happening around us. I think a 100 times before I leave The Toddler with a stranger. Our country has become so unsafe, it can't be taken lightly. 
  2. Connecticut Shootout
  3. We have to start The Toddler's Day Care formally from January 2013 (gives me jitters).
  4. Unfortunately, I was not able to keep up with my namaaz the way I wanted to, Insh'Allah I will work on this front
  5. Working out somehow isn't working the way I want it to. I sure would not give up, I will reach there soon Insh'Allah

Saturday, December 22, 2012

And She Did It!!!

The dreaded moment which I've been waiting for ... No, I never wanted it to happen... But I was told this moment is a part of your toddler turning 2. I couldn't have denied it, I did prepare myself for it and I did the right thing... I'm proud of my 'mommie self'... I deserve a pat on my back.

She has scratched me, pulled my hair and hit me... but at that time she was too young.

So the Toddler and me were sitting after a long day of shopping... Both of us were tired. My foot had twisted and I was in pain (no it wasn't a lot of pain, guess I was exhausted). I sat on the couch and started reading a book (all moms must be aware when a mom reads, one of her eye is on the book and the other on the child... Especially when you have an infant/toddler). The Toddler was up to some mischief, she was standing on her chair and constantly climbing the TV cabinet. It could have been too dangerous, I don't stop her from her mischief other wise, but here I knew I had to stop her. She didn't listen to me after telling her 4-5 times, my tone got stern every time. When she did not give up, I got up and hit her on her bum... I hit with a very light hand (I don't believe in hitting her, and I do it just to get her listen and grab her attention with a very very light hand). I guess she got startled and her face grew red with anger. I held her in my lap, but she looked at me with anger and hit me on my face. Now she did this on purpose, I could say from the look in her eyes. I did get angry, but thankfully didn't lose my cool.  I held my ears and said sorry, since I know it was my fault, I spanked and startled her. I don't believe in saying sorry if I'm not at fault, and will always apologize if I'm at fault. I try to make sure The Toddler also does that. Once I apologized she made a puppy face, tears rolled down her eyes, and she hugged me with a 'Mommie'.

Today, my Toddler taught me a big lesson. Say sorry if you're wrong, and things will be right.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Sunday Facebook Update!

  • Ask Zoe 'Are u Mad?' She says 'I'm Mad' :-P
  • That's what my new Blog Description says "Little girls are precious gifts like birds and brooks and streams...their hair is tied up with ribbons and bows...their hearts are tied up with dreams. " Couldn't have been more apt.
  • Went for Zoe's 1st hair cut, I had something different in mind... but Zoe (thanks to her tantrums) just managed to get a trim. A big thank-you to everyone at Divas & Dudes for being so patient and trying everything to make her feel comfortable. You guys were amazing.
  • Got Ya!!! Zoe 'milk strike' is over. Now she has milk in a mug (with a straw) ** don't look at me like that... And when I hand the mug to her she says 'Cufee' and gulps it down.Yeah right I'll give you Coffee... For sure ;-)

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Moms can Dream as well!

Moms can be dreamers too... don't you think so? I, for one am a mom with dreams. I'm extremely possessive about my family and my dreams (which are a big part of me). I dream so I'm. There are some dreams which are extremely personal (specially ones I have for my family and towards my religion) and I would not want to share those... but then there are those which I love talking about.
  • I want to be the best mom to The Toddler (A mom who has big dreams will be a mom first :-))
  • My Little Chatterbox was a dream which has come true... I know I still have a long way to go. Be it in spreading the words across Bangalore and spreading wings across India. I dream big, but that's a part of me.
  • I want to travel around the world with The Toddler and Fizz
  • I dream of being a constant learner, someone who never stops learning
  • I dream & I believe I would be able to become as healthy as I was before The Toddler was born... (more for myself and my family)
  • I want to write a book (a best-seller actually), sometime real soon
  • A small house in Goa, just for The Toddler, Fizz & Me
  • Last but not the least (in fact this is one of my biggest dreams) I want to raise The Toddler to be a healthy, happy confident, smart, intelligent, well-read young girl... who knows the difference between right and wrong... someone who values people, life and most importantly her individual self. Most importantly, I would like her to grow as a dreamer...
This is just glimpse in my dream world... Being a dreamer is a crucial part of me, and I sure do not want to lose them.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Comparisons Comparisons & Some more... Comparisons

Would you compare these?
We spend our entire life comparing, don't we... we might HATE it, but we still do it. It is engraved in us, our entire system and I have been a victim myself. I was the middle sibling and unfortunately for me, both my sisters got better grades than me, which was a big thing (for mom at least - no offense). I was a hit when it came to extra-curricular activities, but that was meant to be secondary? I really don't blame mum, she was proud of my achievements, yet she believed I should focus more on my studies and become an excellent student from an above-average one. AJ loved me (us) a lot to say anything, he was happy when we were happy.

I hated being compared, I did voice my opinion to mum but I guess she did want me to excel in studies as well. Now, when I tell mum, she should have known that I'm different from my sisters as they are from each other. We should celebrate our differences rather than work at becoming clones of each other.

Now that I'm a mom, I do not want to fall in that trap, and I know I won't. You might think it is easy for me as I have just The Toddler and I don't intend to have another baby. So who will I compare her with? Anyone and everyone... her classmates, celebrities, a random kid running around in a mall... anyone. If I want to, I can compare her to any and every one.

Parents do not realize that comparing can fuel sibling/peer rivalries. A simple sentence like, "How can you get such low grades? Your sisters always get amazing grades. Why not you?" Now I know, mum just said that for my betterment, but I felt like I have been slapped right across my face. I love my sisters, but as a kid I did not want to know what they were doing/discussing... because I felt I'm not as good as them.

Why do not we understand that each child is different and has varied interests/capabities/inclination... they like and dislike different things. Like we never compare oranges and apples, it is unfair to compare children as well. When we keep saying 'every child is special and so is mine' why don't we treat them as specials? Why do we want them to be a part of a herd?

Your baby is different and every kid will shine, if they are brought up in the right kind of environment. Make sure you tell your child how unique they are, tell them "You are unique, don't try to be someone else, be yourself and love yourself". If you want them to work hard and give something their 100% tell them so, don't say "When XYZ can do it why can't you".

If we want all children to fit in the same mould, we would not be able to see who they really are... Is that fair?

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Yap Yap Yapity Yap

The Toddler's favorite word is 'No'... which she says to milk, food, sleep, anything and everything when she's not in a mood.

Jooss, Bikiti, Ice-Ci-Ci that's what the Toddler keeps on asking the whole day long. I try to restrict myself, but give in to the juice demand at times. The Toddler doesn't like chocolates and if you give her 2 pieces she would end up eating half a piece and gives the rest to Mommie.

Her favorite word is 'Bye-Bye', 'Let's Go' if you take her out 100 times in a day, she will be gladly ready. Am I tearing my hair already?

Not really, coz with these demands, No's and bye byes... There are a lot of cute things the Toddler says and does. This makes us smile and make the not so terrible 2's turn into Terrific 2's.

Singing songs is her new-found obsession from Bigg Boss, to Muskane Jhooti Hain, to Po-Po-Po and even Fevicol se. **i don't know where to hide my face when I listen to the last 2**. She surprises us every time and when she is through, she says "Clap-Clap". She loves singing rhymes as well, Baa-Baa Black Sheep, Twinkle Twinkle, wheels of the bus, if you're happy and you know it, I want to eat apples and bananas... She keeps on humming the entire day.

When I tell her 'you're a bad girl' she makes a sorry face and goes 'Sowiii'

When we act as if we are yawning, she keeps a hand on our face and goes "Awww-Aww... Ninnaa?"

If you take her on the road she will tell you where a car/bus/aatoo/bike is. And she points and says their name whenever she spots on... So you can imagine the amount of yapping that goes on (Masha'Allah).

She knows her numbers till 20, without a miss. She also recognizes yellow. Animal names/sounds/fruits/basic actions are passe and if you don't know what all she's been saying in these categories please refer to the old month updates.

So 'Aall is well' Masha'Allah, except the tantrums here and there.

Sunday Facebook Update!

  • Thanks to Mr. Popper's Penguins ... Zoe has been giggling for some time now :-)
  • Zoe was singing her Phonic song and came up with D...D...D DaisyDoo (that's what she calls Upsy Daisy from In the Night Garden). I'm so impressed that she connected it the right sound... but she is missing CBeebies... We gotto have the channel back soon.
  • The girl who used to love milk, has boycotted milk. I've tried plain, flavored, shakes, lassi et al... Nothing seems working! :-( She left eating proper meals long back. Now if she has 1 meal in a day without Nakhras I feel blessed.  

Thursday, December 6, 2012

An Eyeopener on Gender Stereotypes and My Views

I read a beautiful post on Parentous this evening which took our attention towards Gender Stereotypes that exist in our society. I suggest the readers please go through Reema Sahay's post before reading mine, she actually speaks my mind.

For all those who know me, or have read my blog... I'm known to be a feminist. I have no problem with the other gender what so ever. The problem I've always had is with the image our society has created around a man and a women. Below I'm giving reference of 2 situations which I faced with my daughter, I felt sick to say the least.

Picture This:

I visited a huge toy store to buy some toy cars for my daughter (do I see some raise brows already? I hope not). When I checked with the attendant, I was told "Oh! Toy Cars... those are in the boy section ma'am". I felt weird and realized even toys are gender based. I tried not to raise the point, I felt it was a system they follow, and almost every toy-store stacks its toys like that.  I just hurried towards the 'BOY section' with my little girl. I (fortunately/unfortunately) overheard a mom telling her pre-schooler “Why do you want a kitchen set? It is for girls… Are you a girl?”. I became furious, and left the store immediately. Obviously the toddler had to come home without the toy car.

Picture This (2):

Couple of our relatives reside in a pretty conservative part of Delhi. I went to visit this aunt of mine, and was enjoying some chai and rusks, when I overheard a mom telling another mom, 'Woh toh apne bete ko itna pamper karti hai, har baat mein rona shuru ho jaata hai... poora ka poora ladki ban gaya hai" (she pampers her son so much, he cries at the drop of a hat, he has become a sissy, a typical girl.) I regretted having overheard that conversation.

After reading Reema's post I realize it's very easy to pick these instances up and frown... Gender Stereotype has become a part of our society. We in our daily lives do and say things which make our children feel girls and boys are different and do things differently. When we mostly pick pinks for girls and blues for boys, it is our mindset that tells us that Pink and Blue signify two different genders. (I personally feel men look really cool in pink and girls carry blue fabulously - like any other color). 

We as parents do set examples in front of our kid's as rightly pointed by Reema.

What are your views on this?

Monday, December 3, 2012

Review PinkCow Classic Designer Clothing

Name: PinkCow Classic Designer Clothing
Owner: Pratima Anand (NIFT Mumbai Graduate)
Reviewed By: Falak
Date Reviewed:  1st December 2012

Being a mum of a 2 year old little girl, I have always been on a look-out for good dresses for my little angel. Little Woman which I reviewed last time makes beautiful casual dresses. If we talk of party wear, I think PinkCow makes some amazing stuff. I'm not a great fan of party dresses available in India... they make your little girl turn into a birthday cake.

PinkCow boosts of some amazing designer clothes for little girls. Love the vintage style dresses which are sure to give your little one a unique style of her own. Still these dresses are age appropriate (except one or two which I saw), which I love, they don't make these little girlies look like grown up girls. If you are looking for dresses and gowns, PinkCow is the place to look for.

Pros: Great age appropriate designs
Cons:  Tad bit expensive but then you have to pay a price for good stuff
Check their Facebook Page
Overall Rating:

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Book Review - Today is Monday By Eric Carle

Name - Today is Monday By Eric Carle

I'm back with my favorite Eric Carle... I promise, I wouldn't do an Eric Carle for the next 2 months.

Why I picked it and what was my Reaction: Thanks to Padmini for introducing me to this one. It is a book with believes in repetition (like all Carle's books) which children love. It's a sing song book and The Toddler loved the video, so I picked up the book. The animals eat String beans, spaghetti, ZOOOOP, roast beef, fresh fish and chicken on all days, till on Sunday they are in for a treat - an ice-cream. In the end all 'hungry' children are invited to 'come and eat it up'.

The Toddler's take: Tell her to bring Today is Monday and she will instantly get it. She loves the song and sings "All you hungry children come and eat it up"

How We Read it: We sing song and point on animals and the food they're eating. You can check the YouTube Video which we love. 

Age Group: 2 - 5 years

Sunday Facebook Update!

  • Nidaa loved the dress u sent for Zoe's birthday sweetheart. If Zoe would have been able to give words to her feelings ... she would have said "Noo-Noo, that is the best dress I have received. And I love the matching shoes. Noo-Noo can you please become my personal stylist... My Fashionista Khaala"
  • 2 times naughty,
    2 times adorable,
    2 times talkative,
    2 times lovable.
    And my munchkin turns 2 - welcome 'Terrific 2s'
    Happy Birthday Zoe... 2nd birthday means 2 times happiness. Stay blessed cupcake, and I promise you will have a blast Inshaa Allah!
  • Zoe's 1st RoadTrip and she behaved like a sweetheart. Her mischief and yapping were constant, but she didn't trouble anyone. My big girl.

You made my day Sweetheart

I went to watch Talaash today and Fizz babysat the Toddler, Fizz will watch the movie tomorrow (no, this isn't about the 'Oh No' parenting moments... which are few and far between).

Fizz and The Toddler came to pick me up, and she was super happy to see me... but she didn't give any different reaction, when she saw me after 3 long hours.

We reached home, and after 5-10 minutes I heard the best thing I have heard in days... The toddler tucked my shirt and in the most lovely lovely ADORABLE tone said "Momma... Love You". It was a big Awwwww Moment. Ahhhhh I love parenting... thanks to The Toddler for introducing me to the love of parenting.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

The Toddler turns 2 in Pondi

Last year we had so much fun celebrating The Toddler's 'vacation birthday' in Goa, that we were sure we will do it again and again... till the time she doesn't get old enough for family vacations :-(. 

This year, for The Toddler's 2nd Birthday, our destination was Pondicherry. We reached Pondicherry at 5.30 pm on 25th November, a day before the birthday. We were supposed to reach at 2 but, the husband decided on taking a Road trip and we lost track at Vellore. Then our resort was around 10kms from Pondicherry, we took a long long time to locate the resort. Having said that... I must confess, The Toddler was totally well-behaved, she kept on yapping and her mischief didn't stop... but she didn't misbehave. Fizz drives amazingly, and we had some nice music for company. The journey was long but not bad at all.

We were very tired when we finally checked-in Zest Big Beach Resort Pondicherry. We decided to rest and have dinner at the resort itself. The resort was big and beautiful. It did have lots of place to roam around, a beach, and amazing activities for kids. On the down side, the lunch and dinner buffet was a tad bit expensive (for non-members of Mahindra Holidays) and there was NO room-service. We wouldn't have chosen this hotel, if not for The Toddler. Seeing her enjoy, we were happy with our choice. The Toddler is a water baby and loved the beach. She saw Turkeys, Geese, Chicken, and a lot of birds... and she loved running after them.

Next day was 26th November and The Toddler's birthday. Post breakfast we explored the beach and went for a dip in the pool. We decided to put on our tourist garb and visit Auroville and Pondi Beach. We lunched at Cafe Le Flore. Amazing ... Amazing place, sitting in the sea facing open cafe was an experience. Cafe Le Flore is a cafe attached to a art gallery and a must visit. The food was just about average, but we didn't mind that at all. The Toddler loved exploring the open area.

Next day we visited the museum, a church and lunched at LeCafe again at Pondi Beach. Beautiful small little place besides the beach. I could've sat there for hours. Food was good but the coffee which we had post lunch was super. The rest of the days were spent lazing at the resort, as for Fizz that's what holidays are for.

We left for Bangalore next morning post-breakfast and this time around we reached Bangalore on time... thanks to Fizz n his research.

Z Family


Dancing in her bikini

Exploring Pondi

The Toddler loved Cafe De Flore

The Cafe

Isn't it amazing

People aren't wrong when they say she is my carbon copy

And her Fizzy's Darling Dotty.

Monday, November 26, 2012

2 years of Amazing Z-Ness

Z if you're already 2 young lady. I just cannot believe (I really cannot) that you are 2 already... Just relax kid... You can chill and we are in no hurry for you to grow up :-P. You have become such a big girl in the past couple of months Mash'Allah. Most moms choke up on their kids 1st birthday, but to be honest when I look back, I think you were quite a baby back then :). It seems like all of a sudden you have become a girl and aren't a baby any more (All right, lets settle with 'toddler'). I don't actually remember, when and how... but the last 12 months saw you transform from a baby to a girl. It wasn't a day or month... you have grown up each and every moment... and have made life special.

Obviously, I feel time has flown by... but I'll skip these cliches. Do you feel the same way? I mean were we good parents and you didn't realize time flew by. Or was I a terror and you do not want to think about the 2 years gone by... naah... I hope I wasn't so bad.

I keep a journal about your achievements in the last 2 years, but do you remember how your days went by? If you want me to re-write the entire thing... I'm sorry I can't. You can sure check our monthly posts and you can keep reading them.

Z you are all that I always wanted and much more. I clearly remember how you looked when you came in this world (2 years back) and the moment I saw you, tears started rolling down my eyes. I must admit, the relationship I shared with you, has developed, I frankly couldn't relate to you when you were born, as I do today.

This year has been full of surprises, more milestones, a great lot of fun and a whole lot of tantrums. Z you must be thinking I always... always... always keep cribbing about your tantrums, but I love it... coz when I see you I feel at least there is someone who beats me hands down. Actually now I have become kind of used to of the tantrums that you throw. People say these are 'terrible 2s' but I'd like to term them as the 'terrific 2s'. You're growing and if we don't understand what you want, or we can't take charge of a situation being adults... You will throw a tantrum for sure.

You have developed a personality of your own... You are loving, independent, a social butterfly, sharp (my smarty pants), a bookworm, stubborn, you love limelight, you have strong mood swings and that makes you a perfect mix of FizzNFalak. One thing that is clear now is that,  you have become my Little Ms. Independent in the past year.  You don't cling on to us all the time (you do only when you want to). You want to wash hands, lay the table, put on your shoos, brush your teeth and what not.

You are also a busy bee, you keep yourself busy with books, magnets (yes fridge magnets) and your musical instruments. You let Mommie continue her work when you want to... but when you need attention, you just come and shut Mom's laptop... Warning toh de diya karo yaar. I won't say no... You know that.

O.K now a lot of good things... Let's come straight to business. So your Z-ness its time to bid many things adieu... Diapers and thumb sucking for sure... We sure are making progress in both these aspects. Another big step would be starting School, from June Insh'Allah. So, no more loitering around and creating a ruckus at home.

Its your day my sweet-pea and we will do what you like, another vacation birthday... And you're enjoying to the core. Happy Birthday Z, you are the best gift Allah has blessed us with Mash'Allah. Have a Blast my baby. May Allah bless you with everything you deserve and much more, may you have a blessed life ahead. And may we have the patience, love, understanding, maturity to bring you up as a loving, confident, responsible, happy individual. Love you Doll.

A picture post with details on how we celebrated your Pondi birthday will follow.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Sunday Facebook Update

Facebook has become so convenient, that I stopped logging on to the blog and updating it. The result, I missed writing a lot of fun updates about The Toddler. So every Sunday I have decided to accumulate the week's update in the blog:

  • Junior Masterchef has taught The Toddler counting 10-1. Now my doll knows 1-20 (barring 17) and 10-1.Wooohoooo Proud mom!
  • The Toddler's new trick. She says Mommie/Mummoo only to hear a 'Yea Baby' from me.
  • Got a jacket for The Toddler FREE from Mom&Me. Loyalty sure does pay 

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Gaza - Crisis Appeal

I know all of you must be aware of the Gaza Tragedy by now. There are so many orphans, who need support and help. Please visit this link.

Thanks for seeing.

Thanks Liya's Mom for sharing the link

Thursday, November 22, 2012

You want me to be 'Your Kinda mum?"

Why on earth people do not understand, no mom likes unwanted advise. I, for one have made it clear time and again... that I don't need your advise on my way of parenting... if and when I do, I would ask people I trust. Also, please do not pass comments on the kind of mum I'm. I'm not here to please you... As a mum, I do things which are good for Z, I don't even think of my comfort when it comes to Z... Z's happiness and betterment is all I think about. That's a huge task in itself and if you tell me to be 'your kind of mum...', I'm sorry I won't.

I'm a very different kind of person, call me insane or whatever you want if you please (many people do that behind my back). Similarly I'm extremely particular about the kind of mother I'm to Z. I don't listen to members of my family when it comes to Z, why should I listen to you. So Please, do me a favor and reserve your opinion for someone who appreciates them. 

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Granparent's Love!

A couple of days back I posted this picture on my mum's Facebook wall, and then today I read a Welsh proverb 'Perfect love sometimes does not come until the first grandchild.'

Grandparents... What do they mean to children. I've not been very fortunate with Grandparents, I'm not too close to any of my Grandmoms. My Paternal Grandad passed away before my parents got married, and my maternal GD a couple of years back. My only fond memories of a Grandparent were attached to my Nana... With him as well we've hardly spent time together. Now when I see my mom and my in-laws, I see the 'Grandparents', I've heard about. My dad was very fond of kids (little girls specially) but unfortunately for Z he passed away couple of years back. My mom stays with my elder sis in Delhi, my nephew is blessed to have her there. My in-laws stay in their house in Rourkela... Z hardly meets them as well. I feel so sorry for Z, when I think she's missing out on all the love and care she deserves.

When we were in Delhi, she met her Ammoo (my mum) at least every weekend. Coming to Bangalore was our decision, and we shifted when Zoe turned 4 months. Also when in Delhi, my in-laws came over more frequently as Delhi was closer to Rourkela compared to a Bangalore.  Since Z's Ammoo was in Delhi, if we had to go on a holiday to her grandparent's place, it would've been Rourkela. Now we constantly have to decide between the 2. :-(
I don't know about Fizz, I keep getting haunted by a question... Have I been unfair to Z when we took this decision. I never realized things would take this turn.

Z with her Ammoo

Zoe with her Daadi

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Book Review - Big Red Barn By Margaret Wise Brown

Name - Big Red Barn By Margaret Wise Brown

By the big red barn
In the great green field,
There was a pink pig
Who was learning to squeal.

Why I picked it and what was my Reaction: By now, if you are following my blog that is... you must be aware that for Z, I love books with lots of pictures and animals. Margaret Wise Brown spins magic when it comes to books for young children. The illustrator Felicia Bond does justice to Brown's easy, rhythmic text... which takes your child through a day at a farm, where lots of animals are playing peacefully before they go to sleep. I just love the book which takes Z through a barnyard which is full of her favorite animals... sheep, horses, rooster, cows, horses, pigs... all big and small.

Z's take now: You give Z anything with lots of pictures and animals, she will fall in love with it. She not only learned new animals like pigeon (she knew birdie... but not pigeon specifically), donkey, etc. She also knows big and little now... courtesy the book where there is a big horse and a little horse, a big pile of hay and a little pile of hay. 

How We Read it: I open the book and wait for Z to point on the animal to take it's name (or sound) and then I read the book with loads and loads of expressions and a lot of voice modulation. 

Age Group: 2+ - 5 years

GoodBye Cbeebies

I thought this would be easy, but it isn't. With a heavy heart I write this blog post as Z watches one of her favorite Cbeebies show - In the Night Garden. 

For those of you who are not aware Cbeebies will no longer be aired in India post 30th November. Check this link for details. Now what am I supposed to do. Z is allowed only 1.5-2 hours TV viewing a day and 90% of that is Cbeebies. What am I supposed to tell her, when she asks about her favorite Tinky Winky. Laa-Laa, Dipsy, Po, Noo-Noo, IgglePiggle, Upsy Daisy, Makka Pakka, Tombliboos, Ninky Nonk, Baby Jake, Finley The Fire Engine and Mister Maker... also everyone on the Big Barn Farm.

Z learned her numbers, Phonics, names of colours, and lots of other things courtesy CBeebies

All this happening when her 2nd birthday is just round the corner. Not done! She has her breakfast with CBeebies for company... does that mean no breakfast for Z?

You might tell me I can show various other channels... it is no big deal. Thanks... but no Thanks... I want to keep away Z from Chota Bheem, Ninja Hattori, Doraemon, Keymon Ache... The only thing I can show is Tom and Jerry and Shaun The Sheep... but these do not impress Z much.

It might sound funny, but it really ain't. I guess all I can do is get her the DVDs of her favorite shows or give up on what little free time I have. What do reckon?

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Introducing Little Women

I've been a mom blogger for more than 2.5 years now (including pregnancy) and I have just realized one thing is missing from my blog... Reviews... I do book reviews, but these would be a collection of my reviews on products/places/services I choose for Z.

I'd like to introduce 'Little Women' here. They are into making infant and young girl's dresses, besides other stuff. I realized one thing when I started shopping for Z, there's a dearth of good dresses available for young girls. I'm not a huge fan of dressing my baby up like a birthday cake. I like simple traditional 'age-appropriate' dresses for little girls. Thank God I was introduced to Little Women when Z was a little over 1 year , and I've already bought 3 dresses for Z from them.

I've never been disappointed, the promptness in answering queries, delivery, the end product quality... all is bang on.

Zoe in her LW dress

Another 1 we ordered

1st Dress we ordered
Rating: 1/2
You can check their Facebook page, or check them on Shopo

Toddling Tuesdays (Pictures speak more than words)

Naughty Naughty Me.....

Yes Yes No No...

Z: Bikitti Bikitti
Me: Z, you have had a Biscuit in the morning, 1 day 1 biscuit ... you promised.
Z: Banana
Me: Here you go sweetheart (peeling the banana)
Z: No ... No... Bikitti want
Me: O.K Bad girl here you go
Z throws bikitti down from the balcony and calls me to show it. Uffffff

I read on babycenter that during this age babies contradict themselves and it is a good thing. I know she does try my patience but, the good thing is it at least is an indication that she is reaching a development milestone.

She will get excited for her afternoon nap and tugs my shirt ... "Mommy Ninnaa... Mommy Please". I save my files on the laptop, smile at her and take her to the bedroom... As I put her to bed and close my eyes (just that she knows I'm sleeping), I hear a voice.... "Bye-Bye Mommy, Out, Let's go". Now what do you expect me to do? Lose my cool??? Well I don't do that (read can't) I have a toddler at home.

Today, I did a mistake of going to pee when ma'am got up from her nap... She started saying "Bottle...Bottle." She started throwing a fit outside the washroom within 30 seconds.

I do have fits of anger (who won't? I'm pretty normal yeah). That doesn't last long, coz I think of all the adorable things she does and that brings an instant smile on my lips.  

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Decisions Decisions Decisions....

From the time I started working on MLCB, I was sure about one thing... I would not let this affect Z a bit. I only hold my classes on weekends (Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays) as of now. I plan to get some more slots from next year onwards. I do my online work and other research etc. in the night, when Z is fast asleep (on most of the days). I try to schedule my meetings according to Z's schedule, but unfortunately that is not always possible. 

I mostly hold my classes in activity centers where Z loves playing... thanks to kid friendly places like Hide N Peek and ThinkBox. She loves these places, she did have a bad experience at one of the activity centers, because the caretaker who was looking after her did not take good care of her... so I had to drop that place, which claims that it is 'kid friendly' but it ain't really child appropriate. 

A big big thank you to Fizz, I don't have to utter a word and he is there (especially when it comes to taking care of Z) for us. 

My first season ends in 2nd week of December, and I plan to go on my annual Delhi vacation with Z Insh'Allah. Once I'm back around the 2nd week of January, I plan to start my next season. Now comes the decision bit... I have 2 options either I get a nice nanny, in this case I can keep Z in front of my eyes and can supervise the nanny. Else, there is a nice daycare near our house and we can opt for that...

Fizz is open with both of them, he has left the decision on me. How convenient... Huh?

Friday, November 2, 2012

Book Review :Fantastic Stories For Children: 2 Year Olds.

Fantastic Stories For Children: 2 Year Old. This book has five short stories for children of 2 year old.

Why I picked it: The moment I saw this book, I knew Z would love this book. The stories were simple, with colorful illustrations and lots of animals.

My reaction: I love the book, it has cute little stories of a tiger scared of postman, a hippo who loves puddles, a lion who enjoys playing hide and seek, a bear who cannot find his teddy and lots more.

Z's take now: Z loves the lion story and whenever I finish it she says "Peek-A-boo... I see you"

How We Read it: I use it as a bedtime story book during afternoon and night.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Fitness Update

This was my FB status last night. 

From a no-workout period of more than a year post pregnancy (due to whatever reasons) to doing both, 2 miles of Leslie Sansone and Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred everyday... I'm so proud of myself.

Goodnight World... Now I deserve some nice sleep!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Here is to Independence - Month 23

Yippie... just a month to go for your 2nd birthday... and this is going to be my last monthly post. 

I know most of the times I keep cribbing about tantrums... but there still are somethings I love about the '23 month old Z'. I just love the fact that you have become Miss. Independent. You love to do everything... and I mean everything on your own. Stop blushing now... and stop smiling... when you want to cling on to us... you do not leave an option for us but to give in.

And your Daa-Daa is not your private property. Mommie can hug him or even shout at him... there is not need to cry baccha. Stop just clinging on to him on weekends... I know you love him... but he cannot carry you for 2 whole days. (we were just talking about Independence). Having said that, I must admit Z has developed a stronger bound with me now. Earlier Z was nowhere to be seen when Fizz was around. Now, there are times, when Z wants to hug me, kiss me, listen to a story and stay just with mommie. She does not want to go to Fizz when she wants me and vice-versa.

Z, another thing... just to make sure you know Fizz and me aren't hard of hearing. You can chill and say things without shouting... Please. Our ears are not insured.

You love wearing shoes, you change 4-5 shoes in a day... that's when we don't step out of the house... talk of shoe fetish. You hate brushing your teeth or your hair. Its so important sweets... so stop giving mommie a tough time.
You speak so much Mash'Allah... but you do not speak when we want you to. You know when we expect you to say 'pee-pee' or 'potty' but you just do not say it. You are so stubborn ya. Anyways take your time.

The best thing that happened this month was that we finalized your pre-school and got you admitted in Siksha Montessori. You join post their summer holidays when you turn 2.5 Insh'Allah... In June next year.

You are obsessed with going out of the house. You wear your shoes, take Mommie's bag, pick up the house keys, try to put it in the keyhole (even though that isn't the way to unlock the door when you are at home) and keep saying "Bye-Bye-Bye... Out... Let's Go". I love taking you out baccha, but you cannot expect me to take you out when we have entered the house only 5 minutes back.

Here is a zee-a-boo in the 23rd month of Zeeness.

My Doggie

With her best friend

My Bunny


Friday, October 19, 2012

Motherhood: A Song Of Life - My Song of Life

This post is a part of the 'Motherhood: A Song For Life Contest' which is currently on Women's Web in association with Mom&Me.

When I saw this beautiful video, I kept on saying... 'that is my story'... 'that's how it happened' or 'I'm sure this will happen in the similar manner'.

Cut to April 2010, I was just another woman, married for a little over 2 years. Extremely happy with my job (eagerly waiting for my promotion). We didn't plan to have a baby for another year or two. God had something else planned for us, in the last week of April my life changed totally. I was told, I'm pregnant and the baby is expected in December. It did take some time for me to accept the fact... I had lots and lots of questions ... my job, were we ready for a baby just yet?, were we ready to become mom & dad? So many questions and no answers. Once we made a decision of going ahead with the pregnancy, it was a smooth ride ... to say the least.

It was what you'd call a 'dream pregnancy' in my case. No complications, minimal morning sickness, no weakness or stress. I was healthy and continued working till the day Zoe was born (she was a premature baby). I was someone who always wanted to experience natural birth, and my gynecologist didn't see any reason why I wouldn't have one. On the 25th November, I was on a work from home and went for a normal check-up... due to some complications I had to be operated and Zoe came in this world on 26th November.

Zoe was the baby of my dreams... guess every mom would say that. The baby of my dreams did make sure every thing wasn't hunky dory, Sleepless nights, colic, an underweight baby and Delhi winters all added on to the stress. For me handling a baby alone with my super supportive husband was not really easy as well, I was clueless to say the least. These were problems and there were moments when I wanted to run away, but these moments didn't last long. When I saw Zoe smile, sit up, make funny faces, walk and surprise us with something new, all our worries vanished. She made sure she make us realize how blessed we were every single day.

Today my baby is all set to celebrate her 2nd birthday soon... and when I look back I cannot imagine how we lived without this little someone in our lives. I don't know whether I'm the perfect mum... but Zoe is the perfect little gift God has blessed me with. 

Me and Zoe

Us.. celebrating Zoe's Birthday in Goa

That is my Sweetheart.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Is it so hard to remember basic Manners?

You might think I'm overdoing ... I wrote a post on the same topic a few months back and here I'm again. Things have changed and I have become even more particular about basic manners.

In my Pre-Z days I was pretty chilled out about certain things in life. For instance, if I was standing in a long queue for billing, and someone barged in front of me breaking the line... Chances of me cursing the person (silently) were higher than arguing with that moron. I would also have thought, maybe the guy who broke the line would have had an emergency and he wasn't that bad.

Now things have changed for sure. I can't do things in the manner I wish. I know there is someone whose constantly watching my actions and learning from them. Now-a-days I feel so sick when there's me trying to teach Z  to share and take turns... Reminding her to say please and thank you and do nothing about it. I mean if a child (not even 2 yet) can remember basic manners, why shouldn't I or any other educated adult for that matter. 90% of the times these 'badly behaved' are fully grown adults. I know its none of my business to correct them, but I really get worked up when Z watches them with full attention. It bugs me to see people setting a wrong example in front of a kid. Why is it so difficult for people to be decent and remember basic manners... Is it so difficult?

I really do not know... may be you do... I guess there should be a special manner school for these special cases who can't remember simple things, they were taught even before they went to school.... it sure is a pity.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Book Review - Head to Toe by Eric Carle

Brief: 'From Head to Toe' - by Eric Carle.

Why I picked it: Z's love for animals has grown... She knows the sound of cow, cat, dog, sheep, goat, elephant, lion, monkey, frog, bee, bird... and she recognizes them as well (I swear I'm missing out on many). She knows a lot of body parts as well, and this book brings both of them together. We love Eric Carle's work so much, I would be buying all his books. I don't think I need any more reasons. 

My reaction: I loved the book, the pictures, the link drawn between an animal's body part and ours... it's great. It has everything Z loves... Animals, body parts, pictures, et al. We don't want more.

Z's take now: If you tell Z to get Caterpillar/Slowly-Slowly/Brown Bear/Head Toe... she gets the book you asked for. She repeats most of the animal names and body parts... she also says 'I can do it'... All in all she loves it.

How We Read it: We sing 'Head and Shoulders knees & toes' before we begin, then I narrate the story... we end with the song (as you can hear in the link of the video below)

Age Group: 2-5 Years

That's Z's favorite page