Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Book Review - Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown

The book Z and I have been focusing on reading in the past week, is Goodnight Moon  by by Margaret Wise Brown, and illustrated by Clement Hurd.

Brief: Its been read to Children for more than 60 years now. Its a 'Bedtime Book'. Its like the little bunny tucked in his bed is saying 'GoodNight' to everyone. The text is rhyming and its more like a poetry.

Why I picked it: its because of the status this book has got as far as books for young kids are concerned.

My initial reaction: Frankly, it wasn't too good.
a) I thought would it be suitable for a young toddler, would she be able to relate to it.
b) The one I have isn't a hard cover, that's a big let down.

Z's initial reaction: She took her own sweet time to familiarize herself with the books. The illustrations caught her eye from the start.

My take on the book now: Its pretty much illustrations than text heavy and that is the best part of the book which young kids enjoy. Colorful visuals keep Z hooked to the book and if she's happy I'm super happy. A Hard bound book should've been better. They have a board book version but it wasn't available.

Z's take now: Z's 'buks' are her favorite possessions (touchwood).  Her books are with her like All the time and this ones no different.

How We Read it: its Z afternoon nap book and that's one of the treasured moments we share. I read it nice and slow in a low tone (unlike our other reading sessions) and point at things as I read along.

Age Group: 0-3 (that's what it claims) but I'd say 6 months to 2.5 years.

Pick it up from: I bought it from Crossword. You can check out on Flipkart

Video: unlike other stories we love the video version as well, Susan Sarandon's voice is an inspiration (for me :))... We love the vid. Thanks Padmini for introducing it to us.

Z's Future Bedroom

From the time I have laid eyes on this picture, I only see Z's future bedroom in this one... Soon Insh'A'Allah


The Shouting Monster Me!!!

I hate shouting at Z, I seriously do... but off late I've been shouting at her. Just her name actually, I don't scold her FOR SURE. For me, its not done, my mum is extremely short tempered and I used to hate it when she shouted (though not often) and I don't want Z to feel like that for a second.

Maybe because fasts drain out all energy from your body and by the end of the day, all you do is just sit at one spot if not lie down. Now I hate lazing around unnecessarily but now-a-days can't help it. Though I don't feel hungry... Z on the other hand is a bundle of energy... Whose up to some mischief (actually more than that, exploring some place). So I keep on telling her, requesting her to sit at one place for 5 mins (which, mind you, is too much to ask for). When she doesn't listen I have to shout which I regret the very next second. I pledge I'll try not to shout at you Z. Mumma is sorry...

Monday, July 30, 2012

My day is made!

I was looking forward to another session of running around, throwing food, Z not opening her and of Me saying "Nahin Khana Hai, Theek Hai, I won't force you".

Today I prepared some nice cheese Scrambled egg for Z and sat of the bean bag. I didn't have to shout 'Z... Z', she came to me herself and sat with me... As both of us watched some nice R.D Burman songs from the 70's on TV.

I didn't have to switch channels to her favorite CBeeBies. She started clapping on those old songs and ate her egg without any fuss.

Donno if she was sleepy or just in a very good mood or was she really hungry for a change. Z finished her ENTIRE food. Happy Mommy and Happy Baby. You made my day ZeeZoe.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

20 Months of Z-ness

Ok, this ones a quick update... because Mash'Allah the month of Ramzaan is here and we're pretty tied up. That's why I guess the number and length of posts will go down. So, as expected my Little Lady is on a speaking spree... New words learned this month are  Hi (she says 'Haaaayeeeee) when she plays -Peek-A-Boo. She's got a new (the most silly word if you ask me) 'Chor- Chor-Chor' phrase that she says... Courtesy hubby who recites some stupid poem about a thief. Z has got a hang of numbers... I say one and Z says 'te' (two), then I go ahead 3-4-5 she says tixs (six) and finally after 7-8-9 she says 'then'. She once (just once) said 'Iloooouoooo' when I said "I Love You Z". When Z hears a 'Koel' she says 'Birdie' and if you ask her what does the bird say... Phatt se she says 'Toooot-Tooooot' (tweet-tweet). A cat says 'eeeewwwwoooooo' sounds like its a Chinese Cat. She knows what the elephant says and does the trunk action as well.

Whenever Fizz and I have Coffee/Chai she sees the mug and says Chai-Chai-Chai (she sounds like those Tea Vendors you hear at a railway station :)). Her favorite stuff toy Mickey is 'Ickey'.

Finally I'm able to comb her hair and put little clips in her hair (Hair bands are a different story). How it worked for me was, whenever I successfully put a clip in her hair I used to clap. Now my little monkey, imitates me and claps the moment I put her little snap clips.

I know I'm missing a lot, but not much time in hand... So adhoora post this is.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Pepper - Learns to Take Turns

Brief: I love the 'Pepper series' which are published by Sterling Publisher Pvt Ltd. Pepper the main character tells kids about various things like brushing teeth, stage fright, good manners etc. In this book, Pepper doesn't let his friends play and take turns on the swings. His friends leave him because of this attitude of his, this makes Pepper realize his mistake.

Why I picked it: Good lesson told in a very nice way, pictures are nice and the book rely more on pictures and not on words which is good for young kids.

My initial reaction: I loved the book, what better way to teach kids good things or two than with the help of a friendly little dog.

Z's initial reaction: Z liked the pictures and seeing different animals in one book grabbed her attention.

My take on the book now: I love the book, but I have kept it away... though Z loves it, she loves to tear the pages apart as well ... Yes, its not a hard board book.

Z's take now: She still loves the book, picks it up when I'm not seeing. Loves to tear its pages. 

How do we read it: We used to read it in different voices with lots of expressions, so I loved doing that.

Age Group: 2+ Years

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Toddling Tuesday

First few hours of Z's day are reserved for bonding between Z and Dad. Fizz generally leaves late and comes late at night. During Ramadan, since Fizz has to come home around 5 in the evening to break the fast, he obviously leaves early in the morning. Rozas started on Saturday, it being a weekend ... daddy-dotty spent lots of time together. Today when Z got up, she couldn't see her Pa, so she started searching for him. When she didn't find him after looking for Fizz for a good 10 minutes, she started crying and she kept on saying 'Pa-Pa-Pa'. My heart went out to my poor baby, I hugged her, tried to speak to her but she kept crying for 5-10 minutes.

So it was a sad start to an otherwise nice day for Z and me.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

My 'I Stood Up' Moment

I know I mostly write as a 'mom' in here, but its my responsibility that my daughter learns about something her mom did and is proud of.

Here Goes:
I've spent most of my schooling, college and post-grad years in Delhi. Traveling in the famous (read infamous) DTC Buses (Delhi Metros came in a few years later). Those who have stayed in Delhi and traveled in the DTC buses will relate to my story. Women must've experienced it and men must've witnessed it (most of them as silent observers).

So it was regular mad-mad winter morning, I rushed  to my bus stop and reached just in time to board my 711 to South Extension. Just to tell you non-Delhites this is a 'packed' route in which many working professionals and South DU students travel. If you get place to stand, you should feel blessed.

At the stop next to mine a middle aged 'gentle' man boarded the bus, he came and stood pretty close to me... I had handled these kind of morons before and I knew from the look of him that he was up to something. I stood silently but I was prepared. I moved towards the entrance of the bus and he followed. He then did what he should never have... He tucked his hands in my sweater... Bad luck ... I hand long nails at that point in time, I held his hand and dug my nails in his skin... He took out his hand which still had my nails dug in and tried making a scene by saying "Arre-Arre Madam, Kya Kar Rahi Hain? " (Ma'am what the hell are you doing?) And I told him right back (in a loud voice so that everyone in the bus could here me) "Abhi Bataaoon kya Kar Rahi Hoon??? Itna pitega na ki..." (Should I tell everyone what you were doing? You'll get beaten up real bad". )

What happened post that is something I didn't expect, 4-5 College going guys got up to handle him, and they made him get off the bus. Don't know whether these guys were trying to show-off, trying to impress me, or were genuinely concerned... but my work was done.

What I loved about that incident in particular was that I was not scared at all. I was sure even if no one came to my rescue I'd handle that a**h**e single handed.

Why is it that women in many places in our country are treated as object... Who are born to please everyone but themselves? Wanna call me a feminist... Go ahead.... I believe in standing up for myself and so must you.

I'm writing this as a part of   "I Stood Up" Blogathon by Women'sWeb

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Zoe The Zebra : Book Review

Brief: Zoe the Zebra is about Zoe and her friends (other animals) playing Hide-N-Seek in the jungle. 

Why I picked it: Isn't the reason obvious? I picked it up because the Zebra shares my daughter's name and he is super adorable.

My initial reaction:I liked the book, it looked bright and colorful, with 'Zoe' written all over it

Z's initial reaction: She started exploring the pages and fell in love with the colors. The book being small in size and full of pictures just made her love it even more.

My take on the book now: I loved the book... its a little 5 'pager' full of colors and lots of pictures.

Z's take now: It isn't her favorite, but still she loves it. Especially the way her mom reads it out to her.
How do we read it: I always make Z's story time as fun and animated as possible. So this book is full of various animal sounds and actions. 

Age Group: They've mentioned its for 2+ but Z anyways loves it and so does her mom. 

Buy it from: I bought it from BabeezWorld. There are many baby shopping sites but this one has more books available... check it out. 

Other Books in the Series
  • Eddie the Elephant
  • Leo the Lion
  • Molly the Monkey
  • Filly The Frog
  • Wobbly Eye Bugs
  • Wobbly Eye Jungle
  • Wobbly Eye Pets
I'm so looking forward to check these out. 

Toddling Tuesday

We are back from our short holiday to Shimoga....The holiday was not great, it was just about OK... but we definitely had a relaxing time there, that is more than worth it.

Z had her first road trip and I must say she behaved very well. We drove around 500-600 kms in 2 days. This incident happened in one of the car rides... but first the backdrop. 

Couple of months back, Z hated whenever I used to put any clips or other accessories in her hair. The child is obsessed with her hair. So whenever I successfully put a clip in her hair now I always clap, and after a couple of days, Z now makes sure she claps whenever I put a clip/other hair accessories in her hair...

Now going back the the drive in Shimoga, I was talking about... Z was sleeping in her Pa's lap, she had just slept... I took a strand of her hair and fixed it back with her clip. As soon as I put the clip, Z clapped ... Yes in her sleep... It was hilarious... 

That's about us... what about you?

Friday, July 13, 2012

Vacation Time Begins!!!

We're off to a Vacation starting Friday night. Even though it will end on Monday, I'm so looking forward to this break.

Once I'm back there'll be lots of pictures and a vacation post of course.

See you on the other side...


Wednesday, July 11, 2012

The Very Hungry Caterpillar By Eric Carle

Brief: The Very Hungry Caterpillar is a book which has been a favorite among toddlers for ages. It is one of the most popular book by the famous Eric Carle. This big picture book narrates the tale of an egg who turns into a caterpillar... this caterpillar is very hungry... he eats, eats and eats and then becomes a cocoon and finally a butterfly.

Why I picked it: Lots of pictures, colors, days of the week, numbers, transformation... this book promised lots of fun.

My initial reaction: When I first saw the book, I fell in love with the book. I was worried if it's appropriate for Z's age.

Z's initial reaction: Z didn't take a liking for the book in the first instance. She didn't want me to read it when I first bought the book.

My take on the book now: I love the book, the only problem is I have to read it again and again and again.

Z's take now: She just loves the book, she wants me to read it at least 6-7 times daily. This book sure has become a great companion to Z. 

How do we read it: In a totally animated manner, with different sounds and expressions. Even Z does her bit, whenever I mention something the caterpillar has eaten she makes a sound as if you are eating something. Before I reach the portion of the book when the caterpillar has stomach ache she does "Aaaaoooo! Aaaaoooo! Aaaaooo!" imitating me. And the end of the book has to be followed by her claps.

Age Group: 1-4 Years

Buy it from: I bought it from Flipkart - The Very Hungry Caterpillar (Big Board Book)
This is the one we have. You can buy soft books or hard books which comes with a toy (many options are available.)

Happy Reading

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Best Moment of My Day - Toddling Tuesday

I have read a lot of mom-bloggers describe their best moment of the day. I don't know why, but more than 90% of these women consider the best moment of the day being the bed time routine. I cannot imagine that as my best moment, because this is exclusively Fizz’s responsibility. He is the one who makes Z have a bath at night, and make her go to sleep (on most nights). It is only when Z is super active and not in a mood to sleep, that Fizz hands her over to me, Post that I manage to make her sleep within 15-20 minutes… but that is another story, which I’d narrate in another post (if I think it is worth a post).

Right now I have settled on discussing my favorite moment with Z. This half an hour is something I do not give up for anything (expect on weekends, when we have other plans). This moment happens when I take Z out for individual ‘Me’ time on the terrace. Bangalore weather is always (well, most of the time) amazing at that hour, if it isn’t raining, that is. What makes those 30 minutes exceptional? I think it’s the both of us doing what we want to, without anyone clinging on to the other, or without stopping the other person from doing anything. I brisk walk on the terrace swaying my head on some amazing tunes (thanks to my I-Pod)… I do keep an eye on Z, but never (try not to) stop her from doing anything most of the things. Z has a blast, she plays with bricks, does all kind of acrobats, climbs up and down stairs. You can hear her shriek and shout (in excitement), if you are around, and I have a constant smile on my face and a song on my lips.

So, what is your best moment of the day with your little one?

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Are you a 'Sacrificing' Mom?

I've been wanting to express my views, take a stand on something I truly believe in. For the first time in my life I was scared to take a stand. I mean, I've always said what I wanted to... but here I was confused and more confused as to whether I should say what I wanted to. Finally today on Facebook I did it. A Facebook status actually is a mini-blog post, which I use to gather reactions at times... When I'm unsure of writing a complete post on something. And I wrote "Many women forget that having a family/baby isn't synonymous to losing your identity. In fact you need to be a happier/stronger and confident 'individual' to have a happy Family/Baby." I knew I wasn't saying something new and this was something mothers want to say but most of the times don't.

I for one don't believe in 'Mothers sacrificing for their family/children' bit. I'm sorry if I hurt your feelings and if you think "what the hell is she saying?" I'd suggest please don't read this post any further.

I have never thought I'm sacrificing when I do something for Z. I left a full-time corporate job (which I any ways wanted to), I took up a Work From Home option, I'm planning to start something which would keep me happy/engaged and help me earn some money (big yeah for that). I took these and many such decisions because I wanted to do this and not because I'm doing a sacrifice (read 'favor') on Z. I'm not someone who will be happy living for someone else, and I know if I'm not happy then Z would definitely not be happy.

I look at my mum, she did a lot for us (and I love her for that) but she didn't lose herself in this. She wasn't there with us 24*7, she was the one who decided on what's going on in our house and life till we were mature enough to do it... no one dare argue with her. She had a life of her own, still does. She never told us I've done so much for you, or I've sacrificed my life for you... Forget saying, she never made us feel like that. She is an individual who made her own decisions. And that's how I think it should be. I know my priorities; I will never neglect Z for something just I want to do and I would never neglect 'my self'...

Before you assume lemme add, what I've said is not about whether you're working/SAHM/WFHM. The decision you take should be yours than anyone else's. I salute housewives who handle the kids and house perfectly and if that's what they want to do then it will make you happy and keep you satisfied. I admire the way some women go out work and handle kids (leaving a baby with a nanny/daycare isn't an easy decision and its to each their own). Then there are people like me... I don't know if I will leave Z and go to office, but I work equally hard at home, and trust me its not easy. You have to draw a line. There are situations when I'm on a call with a client and Z wants me exactly at that point in time.

When Z grows up, I want her to know... I'm there for her but I do have a life/identity of my own. So the bottom line is  I know Z would be real proud of me and really happy  if she knows I'm happy. That's what I want. What about you?

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

My favourite Pregnancy Movies

I obviously have 2 obsessions in my life  right now... Children/Pregnancy (which is recently developed) and cinema. I remember when I was pregnant, I watched as many baby movies as possible. I love the way Hollywood movies show pregnancy and babies (though they not always show reality) but what the hell I still Love them. Here's a list of movies based on pregnancy which I love, and I have seen them like a million and I just love them. Actually one doesn't need to be pregnant to fall in love with these movies. They make you laugh, they make you cry and fall in love. But when I was pregnant I made sure I watch every single pregnancy movie. It was some sought of a therapy for me... It made me feel happy.

  • The Back-Up plan: This Jennifer Lopez and Alex O'Loughlin starer is a favorite and tops the list. After - all we named Z after JLo's character. This was actually the first movie I saw when I came to know I was expecting Z (coincidentally). I fell in love with the movie.
  • Father of the Bride 2 Steve Martin is super funny as the dad of a bride and even funnier as a Granddad-to-be.  Love both the parts but the sequel is a lot more funny. I love watching this movie with Fizz.  I'm so confident Fizz will be a dad like the character Steve Martin played in future.
  • Nine Months - Hugh Grant is a good enough reason for me to love this movie. I first saw this movie when I was in school and have loved it ever since. This movie shows a man's take on Pregnancy and babies.
  • Baby Mama - The chemistry between Tina Fey and Amy Poehler is unbeatable. The movie is about this successful single Business woman who finds out she's infertile. She hires a woman to be a surrogate mom.
  • Juno - This movie about teenage pregnancy sees the main protagonist Juno getting pregnant. She tries going for abortion but drops the plan and decides to give the baby up for adoption instead.
  • Junior - Seeing Arnold Schwarzenegger play a male scientist who undergoes pregnancy is HILARIOUS.

  • Baby Boom - Diana Keaton plays a super successful career woman and she unexpectedly gets the responsibility of a toddler (which she inherits from a deceased cousin). She tries to save her career, then gives it all up and after struggling a little starts selling Gourmet Baby Food which soon becomes a success.

To see list:
  • Knocked Up
  • She's having a Baby
  • Away We Go
  • Waitress
  • What to expect when you're expecting

So that's my list... what's yours? Please suggest names if I have missed out on any (which I'm sure I have)

Toddling Tuesday

Z is busy playing with her toys, I see an opportunity... Seeing her busy, I plan to quietly catch up on some reading... It used to be my Favorite pass time. I still love it, hardly get time to do it though.

So I sit back on my diwan and within 2 minutes, I feel someone has kept something on my lap... I hear the sound of 'book, book, book' in the background.... I ignore it, reading makes me go deaf. Then I realize someone is trying to pull away my book and the sound of 'book-book-book' becomes louder. I get irritated (read furious) and keep the book down... Just to see two innocent eyes looking at me ... They are requesting me to read out 'the Hungry Caterpillar' by Eric Carle (her current favorite) for the nth time today. All my ghussa vanishes... I take a deep breath and read 'In the light of the Moon.......'. At least I'm able to read out to Z couple of times a day... What if I take a couple of weeks to finish one damn book I used to finish in a couple of hours earlier. Aaaah!!! Joys of parenthood...Rolls her eyes up!