Style your hair in minutes with ‘Black Hairspray’

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post but all opinions are purely mine.

How often are we mothers stuck when it comes to quickly styling our hair before leaving for a party or an outing? I’m often in a fix and end up wearing a bun because my little one leaves me with no time to play and experiment with my hair. Even at my brothers wedding, I had to opt for a messy ponytail because my girl got cranky and didn’t let me style my hair.

In moments like these, ready wigs come to our rescue! The problem with most wigs available in the market is that they’re synthetic and hence don’t blend well with our hair. They’re not just too thick and difficult to style but also can’t be dukes of coloured to match our hair.

When I read about ‘Black Hairspray’ and their collection, I had my heart for several reasons:

1. It’s one of the largest e-commerce website for braids, wigs and all hair care products.

2. The brand is immensely passionate about all things hair and make a variety of things in top notch quality!

3. All their wigs are made of human hair which is why they’re easy to style, blend well and can also be coloured!

4. They’re available in a variety of textures and colours so that even those who have super straight hair or extremely curly hair find their perfect match.

Pros:

1. Made with 100% natural human hair

2. They’ve no hassle 30 days return policy and an extremely supportive customer care team

3. They offer same day delivery in several states of the continental US.

4. Easy and convenient to shop.

5. They have a section of clearance sale items. Those on a hunt for affordable pieces might find something at a steal price there.

Cons:

1. Indians might have to pay additional customs to get it shipped to our country.

To purchase outre wigs for yourself, click here- ‘Outre

Thank you for stopping by and reading!

Have a great day

Love,

Elina

#BlackHairspray #hairwigs #sponsoredad

First Birthday Decor- Ideas, Tips and DIYs

My little girls first birthday was dreamt of and conceptualized long before she was even born. Every time I attended a child’s birthday as a young girl, I visualized my child’s birthday. I never wanted it to be a fancy affair, I just wanted every little element of her party to be special, just like her.

When I shared a few pictures from her party on Instagram, I received several requests from fellow moms to share the details of our setup. So, here we go!

Firstly, I’d like to share a few tips that you can keep mind before deciding on the theme and colour palette for her party:

1. Pick a theme which is evergreen. Especially for their first birthdays because they have no liking or choice at that age. Sometimes, people choose cartoon characters or era-specific themes which may not live until the child grows up. If we choose cartoon characters of this generation, chances are he won’t feel connected to the photos when once he begins to understand things on growing up. I chose ‘twinkle twinkle little star’, because well, stars are sure to last until her adulthood 😅 Or at least we can hope so! Considering the pollution these days and its impacts these days, you really can’t tell. 🙈

2. Choose a white background with bright poppy or pastel colours which stand out. This will not just make the whole place lovely but also look great in the photos. We chose pastels and gold, because you can never go wrong with that combination 💗

3. If planning at home, choose your window curtains as your backdrop. It takes much less effort in decorating and if planned well, saves space too.

Here are the all the details (even the minutest ones 🙈) of our setup:

Backdrop:

1. I purchased white-gold jacquard curtains which were opaque enough to function as our backdrop. (It’s wiser this way because once the party is over, you won’t have to throw away your backdrop but can use the curtains for regular use too)

2. Since the length of our window was 5ft, I purchased 3 sets of broad ribbons in pastel and gold, each measuring 10ft and hung them at equal distances. For that, I simply cut them in the desired length and tied at knot at the bar that held the curtains. Easy peasy!

3. I also purchased 2 glitter star-strings that I purchased from a local party shop and used them in the similar way too. You can DIY these strings too- I realised that later 🙈

4. Below our window, we have a few storage shelves. I purchased 6 helium balloons, in pink, blue and white from a local party shop and tied them on the knob of those shelves. Along with those balloons, I had 2 star shaped foil balloons (filled with helium too) which I’d purchased from AliExpress- I tied them on either sides along with the other balloons to complete the look.

5. We got custom-made bunting which read- “happy birthday (name)” in the same theme from The Joy Factory Shop (www.thejoyfactory.in) to embellish our beautiful backdrop.

Other walls:

I wanted little but special elements on each corner of my house and here’s what we did:

1. The wall on the left of the cake table had a frame which had her birth statistics and other details from that day.

2. The other wall on the left had a photo bunting with 12 photos- one from birth to 11 months each. We used a jute twine, 12 wooden clips, her snaps that we got made from The Snap Store (costed us just ₹40 or so including delivery!) and a number 1 foil balloon which was also purchased from a local party shop. Setting this wall was simple and without a doubt, it was the star of the show. And oh yes, I also purchased pink felt paper and cut out numbers to attach under each photo to match our theme 🌟

3. The wall above our food table had posters with motivational quotes for my girl. This was an impromptu addition but it definitely worked well with the whole concept.

4. Last and the final wall- which was also the one on the right of the cake table was the ‘wall of wishes’. I purchased some gift wrapping papers and made a few envelopes out of it. I then stuck them all on a wall so that the attendees could write letters for my daughter- something she’ll grow up and read and cherish all her life!

Cake table:

1. We got a ‘ Twinkle twinkle little star’ themed cake with Dutch chocolate filling for her. To make it even more stunning, we got a cake topper in a brilliant golden colour from ‘The Joy Factory Shop’

2. We also got a few cupcakes and placed them on a personalised wooden tray. We embellished them with cupcake toppers and boy! They looked lovely!

3. We also had the return favours for the kids attending and a few props for photographs placed on the table, so that the access is easier.

4. We got a monogram of her initials from the same party shop and placed it on the side of the cake.

5. The Joy Factory Shop designed a beautiful chalkboard with all her current statistics and progress updates in the required theme. We got it framed and placed it on the table! What a stunner it was 😍

4. To decorate the table, I stuck PVC paper on the table top and attached a white satin cloth on its edges to let it flow. On it, I stuck a foil tassel bunting that I purchased from AliExpress in the colour pink, white and gold.

That’s it! I was so happy with how it all came together and how beautiful the photos turned out!

I hope you found this article helpful!

Thanks for stopping by!

Happy parenting 😊

Love,

Elina

12 Baby Food Ideas For Busy Moms (6-12m)

Cooking for our little ones is one of the most satisfying activities, isn’t it? But here’s a confession, there have been days when I couldn’t provide her with nutritious meals due to my busy schedule and trust me, I used to feel extremely guilty about it. I’m pretty sure there’re many mothers who are going through the same.

There’s a famous quote by Bill Gates where he says, “I choose a lazy person to do a hard job. Because a lazy person will find an easy way to do it.”

I’m that lazy person :p

Here are a few baby food recipes for moms of 6-12 month old babies out there! These recipes are very quick and easy, just make sure you you do your pre-preparation and planning right.

If you’re a new mom, I’d urge you to to read my article on introduction to solids (click here) to get your facts correct before you start. Also, to read my take on baby-led weaning, click here.

Before we start, here are some guidelines for you:

1. Make sure that your recipe has at least 2-3 food groups.

2. Avoid processed and packaged foods, no matter now fancy the packaging may be.

3. Your child doesn’t need sweetness or salt in his food. Try to avoid that too.

4. Dal water, rice water or basically anything just boiled in water is not a healthy option!

Let’s delve straight into the recipes now!

Age: 6-7 months (Puréed to soft mashed foods)

1. Ragi apple/mango porridge:

Boil apple and grind it into a paste. For mangoes, you can just peel and grind it.

Take some ghee and lightly roast ragi. Add this purée and gently stir it. Add some water to make a thick paste! And voila, it’s ready

2. Sweet potato and strawberry purée

Boil and grind sweet potato with fresh strawberries until a thick creamy paste is formed. My girl loved this!

3. Beet root, banana and berries smoothie

Take boiled and chopped beet root, add sliced bananas, a few berries of your choice and some homemade curd. Blend all of this together and serve.

4. Chickoo Sheera

This was my girl’s absolute favourite. Sauté some rava in ghee, add puréed Chickoo and water. And it’s ready! You can try this with mangoes too.

Age: 7-10 months (Semi-solids to solids)

By 7.5 months, my girl was eating pretty much all solids that we did. We had a smooth transition because she loved eating on her own and showed interest in what we ate.

1. Mashed Cutlets/kebabs

I remember, this was my go-to food for a long time because she used to love kebabs

Boil potatoes and chicken (or soya nuggets/pulse of your choice). You can add blanched spinach too. Mix it all and add some lemon, finely minced onion and cumin seeds. Mix it all and dip in egg (or rawa) and shallow fry. Mash if needed or give small bite size pieces to your baby.

2. Roti porridge

Take 1-2 chapatis and chop them into small pieces. Take some ghee in a vessel, sauté cumin seeds and finely chopped onions. Add some ginger garlic paste. Then add chapattis and turmeric powder to it. Once soft, add some fresh curd and voila! It’s done.

3. Vegetable Paneer khichadi

Take dal and rice in equal amounts and soak. First, take ghee in a pressure cooker. Sauté cumin seeds and add chopped onions and tomatoes. Chop a mix of veggies and paneer and add to it. Then add rice and dal and allow it to cook in until soft.

4. Oats Upma

Lightly roasted and grind instant oats. In a wok, add ghee/oil and your regular Upma ingredients like onion, tomatoes etc. Then add oats and sauté, until it’s slightly cooked. Once done, add water, cover with a lid and cook until ready.

Age: 10-12 months (Solids)

1. Instant Coconut Idlis

Mix rava and curd in equal amounts. Add desiccated coconut (easily available) or you can use fresh ground coconut too. You can also add finely grated carrots to add some colour to it. Add optimum water until the required consistency is obtained. Place in an Idli maker and steam until done.

2. Spinach Cheela

Blanch and grind spinach. Mix it with besan (chana flour). Add water, cumin seeds powder and turmeric to it. Spread like a dosa and keep flipping until both the sides are well cooked. Grate some cottage cheese (paneer) on it and give small bite size pieces to your baby. (Can be made with moong dal too).

3. Mango, papaya and dates smoothie

Chop and grind mango, papaya and dates with a little curd and water. You’ll get a smoothie which serves as great evening snack for babies.

4. Chickpea and egg yolk patties

Soak, boil and grind chickpea. In a grinder, mix it with a clove, cumin seeds, lemon and boiled egg yolk (optional). You’ll get a smooth textured thick paste after blending them together. Add chopped coriander leaves to it. Make small flat balls and shallow fry them until well cooked.

(P.S. use just egg yolk and not the white until your baby is a year old)

Hope you found these recipes useful! Please subscribe to be notified whenever I post an article! 🙂

Have a great day and happy parenting!

Love,

Elina

(P.S. Images are for representation purposes only)

Toy Minimalism- Tips and Tricks + Review of Rainbow Roofs from Skola Toys

I won’t call myself a minimalist, but I simply can’t stand clutter. It not only takes a lot of space of your home, but your mind too. And quite unlike the perception, minimalism doesn’t mean ‘plain white nothingness’, but it means getting rid of things which aren’t of much use and living with lesser but meaningful items.

Kids need real activities to play with, and not just a hundred squeaky toys or rattles in different shapes and colours. If you’re also tired of cleaning the whole toy shelf everyday, try maintaining minimalism by following these simple tips:

  1. Free yourself from getting emotionally attached to objects which are of no use. For example, get rid of toys that your child has outgrown. Don’t keep hoarding toys that he doesn’t play with any more, give it to someone in need instead. This way, you won’t only de-clutter but also help another child enjoy the same way like your kid once did. 
  2. Don’t purchase two similar toys, or even books for that matter. For instance, one board book of alphabets suffices, you don’t need to get three different types of it. Similarly for stacking toys- just invest in one of them. Most of them teach the exact same skill set.
  3. Don’t invest in a soft toy until your baby is at least 2 years old. I made a mistake of getting one while I was pregnant and believe me, I regret that purchase every day. Not only it’s fur entangles dirt, but the child is very small to understand how to play with soft toys and it usually ends up taking space in some nook of the house.
  4. Invest in toys that can be used for a long duration. Activity push walkers, for example, are useful only for a couple of months until kids learn to walk, hence not a good investment.
  5. Purchase toys that are versatile and multi-purposive. This will not only take less space at home but also unlock your child’s creativity to a great extent.

One such toy that I intend to talk  about today is ‘Rainbow Roofs’ from Skola Toys. When I first read about Skola Toys from a few experts, I hopped on their website to see their collection. Not only was I blown away by the brilliance yet simplicity of their toys, but what absolutely loved was the fact that each toy has been designed after plentiful research and thought.

My little girl who’s almost 13 months old now, usually doesn’t enjoy playing with one single toy for a long duration. It’s difficult to keep her engaged and the only way I am able to do that is by trying a different ways of playing with her existing toys.

When I spoke to the representative of Skola Toys, they recommended me to try out their rainbow roofs. It’s basically a triangular base on which colourful wooden roofs can be stacked. Although it’s meant for kids who are aged 1.5y+ my daughter still enjoys playing with it.

Packaging:

It came well packaged in a medium sized box, which instantly made me realise what a wonderful gift idea would it be for kids on their birthdays.

The box was made of cardboard and had drawings on it. The contents induced: one triangular base, 7 wooden roof stackers and one small box of 4 crayons for colouring the doodles on the box. Now that’s called thoughtful packaging!

Quality:

The make of these stackers is top notch and the colours used are bright and vivid- just how the kids love it. The edges aren’t sharp and the colours don’t peel off too, hence making them safe to use.

The only downside I noticed was that- the pieces are slightly heavy and young kids might find a little difficult to play with them, initially. Although I’m not completely sure about this. Perhaps, I feel so because my girl is younger than the recommended age and maybe that’s why she’s finding it a little difficult to lift.

Versatility:

When I first saw the box, I thought it’s a regular stacker with a different shape and style. But then I read the manual sheet and information on their website, I realised how creatively these can be used and how conveniently they transform into a variety of structures.

Here are some examples of how creative one can get with them:

Learning:

There are several skills/concepts that a child can learn through these stackers 

  •  Balance 
  • Hand eye coordination 
  • Memory
  • Colour recognition 
  • Dexterity
  • Fine motor skills

To know more about learning toys, click here

Why would I recommend this toy?:

  • Space saver- one toy can be used in so many ways 
  • Toxin free- made of natural wood
  • Bright and vivid colours
  • Builds skill set and enhances their learning capacity
  • Sturdy and long lasting.

All in all, it’s a brilliant product and I will definitely recommend it for kids who’re 1.5-2 years. If your child isn’t in this age bracket, don’t fret, you’ll find many more options for all age groups starting from 1year. Click here to reach their website.

Thanks for stopping by and reading!

Happy parenting,

Elina Wadia

P.S. This was a sponsored post but my opinions are completely unbiased and genuine

Bumberry Diapers- Comprehensive Product Review

I vividly remember, while packing my hospital bag, I was browsing through diaper options on FirstCry.com, when I stumbled upon Bumberry Diapers. Back then, unfortunately, I had absolutely no clue of the concept of advanced cloth diapering and was sure that I won’t be able to make heads or tails of it, so I decided to pick the conventional cloth nappies and a pack of disposables instead. Slowly and gradually, I learnt more and before I realized, I was exclusively cloth diapering my little one. Exactly 10 months later, I saw Bumberry make an appearance on a social media platforms too and realized it was the perfect time to try them out. So, after a month of extensive use, I’m here to share my personal experience with you all.

Bumberry sent me two diapers to review: One pocket diaper and one cover diaper along with a wet-free insert. Let’s dive into the review of all three.

Pocket Cloth Diaper with one 3 Layered Microfibre Insert

Bumberry pocket diaper comes in a package along with one insert which is apt for the diaper. It’s designed for 2.5 to 15 kg which means you can start using it right from birth and use until toddler-hood. The pack said it’s best for sleep time and quite honestly, I wasn’t convinced how a pocket diaper would perform at first, so I waited and tried using it during the day only. After one week, I mustered some courage and used it for night-time and boy! I was blown away by its performance. Even when I tried it on her for the first time, it stayed absolutely dry as if it was freshly dried in the sun- and that was after more than 13 long hours of being worn!!

It’s trim, perfectly sized and the snap buttons are placed appropriately to fit all sizes. The outer cover is soft and inner lining is great too. However, the microfibre insert doesn’t seem to be of the same quality like that of the cover diapers. Although, it doesn’t come in contact with the skin and absorbs pee really well, so I have nothing to complain about.

Price: Rs. 780/- for the set

Available on: Firstcry, Amazon, Hopscotch and their website

Cloth Diaper Cover with 1 Bamboo Insert

This cover diaper is a great day time option, especially in winters. Since it comes along with a bamboo insert- which is known for super absorption and its quick drying properties, it’s the best you can get for the season. I loved how soft the upper part of the insert is which makes it suitable for even kids with highly sensitive skin.

In my use, I noticed that it usually lasts for 5-6 hours easily after which it has to be changed.

Price: Rs. 760/- for the set

Available on: Firstcry, Amazon, Hopscotch and their website etc.

Wet Free Insert:

If you’re considering to buy a diaper for your small baby who’s extremely sensitive to the feeling of wetness and gets cranky easily, then this insert is for you! It has three layers of microfibre terry cloth with one layer of extra dry suede to serve the purpose. It’s designed to fit along with Bumberry cover diapers and miraculously keeps both the diaper and the baby’s skin absolutely dry. Of all the products, this one took me by surprise the most! I’d highly recommend trying this insert. Priced at Rs. 660/- for 3 inserts, I believe it’s a steal.

Available on: Official website of Bumberry, Firstcry, Amazon, Hopscotch etc.

I hope you found the review helpful!

Thank you for stopping by and reading.

Happy parenting!

Love, Elina

P.S. This was a sponsored post but my opinions remain unaffected by the association.

How To Choose Perfect Return Gifts for Kids?

For kids, return gifts are the most exciting part of attending parties! Yes, they love cake and balloons too, but going back home with a bag of goodies is a even more fun!

Hence, make sure that amidst all the birthday prep madness, take out some time and hunt for good return gifts for your little attendees.

To help you with this task, I’ve jotted down a few pointers which you can keep in mind while picking up return gifts for your child’s party.

1. Meaningfulness

Even if your budget is tight, make sure to give some meaningful and useful item. I’ve seen people give customised badges and tiny wallets for small kids, which is great but in my opinion, is not a very meaningful option, especially for toddlers and small kids. Choose gifts that add value to their life or have some usefulness.

2. Durability

Considering the fact that kids tend to throw and not handle things very delicately, it’s vital to get gifts that are sturdy and well made. Also, it’s best to give something that they’ll use of a long time.

3. Age specificity

Gifts can be of various types- those bought in bulk or those customised. But nothing beats getting something age specific for each child. A tiny toddler may not benefit from a keychain and a preschooler may not benefit from stacking rings. It’s okay if each gift is different from the other as long as it’s specifically for that child. That way, children will derive more use out of the gifts too.

4. Child-friendliness of the material used

Most plastic toys are made of petroleum and contain BPA, which is neither safe for the baby nor ego-friendly. Made sure to purchase toys that are BPA free or made with natural material like wood or rubber.

5. What will the child learn or derive from the gift?

Essentially, we gift toys to kids so that they can both enjoy and learn, right? Because, everything they do can be tweaked in such a way that it becomes an activity they can learn from!

Before you buy anything for the kids, ask yourself- what will the child learn from the gift you’re giving? Most kids have enough squeaky toys or random pieces which don’t add any value or learning to their lives. Try not to add to the clutter and give something for meaningful instead!

I’ve written an article on return gift ideas where I’ve jotted 10 useful and meaningful return gifts for all age groups and budgets. Make sure to check that article here.

One of the most renowned brands in this segment is Skola Toys. They’re known for their high quality and age appropriate learning toys for kids. Their stuff is made from natural wood with utmost care.

Skola Toys have come up with a line of products especially curated to serve as return gifts. What’s more, they’ve some amazing coupons and discounts on every purchase. Go check their website now!

Thanks for stopping by and reading!

Love,

Elina

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post

Meaningful Return Gift Ideas Starting from ₹100/-

With my little one’s first birthday just around the corner, I thought I’ll write a series of posts on ‘First Birthday Preparations’ based on my personal experience. I’ll be writing on how to plan in such a way that everything is simple, easy and meaningful. So keep an eye on my blog page!

In fact, I’ve already started the series with this first post- i.e. Meaningful Return gifts!

Kids love gifts. In fact, I still love receiving them :p But let’s face it, hunting for good return gifts can be a painstaking task especially when you’re planning your child’s birthday too.

The fact that most parents settle for water bottles, lunch boxes etc., proves their exhaustion. Hence I’ve complied a list of meaningful gifts for you so that your daunting task becomes easier!

I’m sharing 10 return gift ideas which are so appropriate and useful that the kids will thank you for your choice! 🙂

1. Piggy Bank

Giving a piggy bank will not just help them learn the value of money but also encourage them to save some and buy things of their choice.

Price: You’ll find them in a variety of designs and shapes starting from ₹150/- or even lesser.

Here’s the amazon link of one such piggy bank for your reference.

2. Learning Toys

Toys play a cardinal role in both physical and mental development of children. So why not give them good wooden learning toys and send them back home not just with a huge smile but an opportunity to learn something new?

Fisher Price, Skola, Brainsmith etc. have some great options in this segment.

Price: ₹325/- onwards

3. Play doh

Play doh and clay helps in making their motor skills stronger and their eye-hand coordination better. It’s loved by both young and older kids and hence is a great option if you have a mix of kids of all age groups.

Price: Staring from ₹125/-

Here’s the link of one such kit for your reference.

4. Chalkboard

Using chalkboard not only saves paper and money but also helps a lot in building their fine motor skills. Though they look old school but these days you get a variety of them in different shapes and even personalisations.

Price: ₹100/- or even less

Here’s a link of one such store which makes chalkboards for return gifts and otherwise too.

5. Indoor Plant

Teach kids to grow a plant early on not only gets them fascinated but also makes them love and value the food they eat and plants they see.

Here’s a link for one such indoor plant service in India.

6. Colouring Book

Art captures the imagination of kids and sparks their creativity. You can get simple colouring books with organic colours for little kids and mandala books for older ones.

Price: Starting from ₹149/-

Here’s the link of one such book for your reference.

7. Height Chart Wall Decal

Or any decal, actually.

I’m a sucker for cute things and wall decals are my favorite! They easily spice up any corner of the room and make it lively.

Price: 169/- onwards

Here’s the link of one such cute height chart wall decal for you!

8. Slime Kit

Playing with slime is very beneficial in building their sensory skills! Not only kids love it but adults find it stress relieving too!

Price: ₹130/- onwards

Here’s the link of one such slime set for your reference.

9. Book

There’s no gift like a book. Need I say more? You can give any classical bedtime book to younger kids and engaging activity books to older ones.

Price: ₹100/- and above

10. Skipping Rope/ Frisbee/ Cricket Bat/ Badminton Kit

Basically anything that encourages them to step out and play. Kids these days are glued to gadgets and there’s nothing better than gifting them the joy of outdoor play!

I hope you found this article helpful.

Share with your friends so that they can benefit from it too.

Thanks for stopping by and reading.

Happy Parenting!

Love,

Elina

How To Choose Toys To Make Your Kid Smarter?

“Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn.”

Benjamin Franklin

A child’s brains goes through a spellbinding period of development in the first three years. It produces a million neural connections every second, which means that the child observes and learns from each and every diminutive thing he comes across!

This learning doesn’t start when the child begins to talk or displays comprehension, but it begins right from Day 1!

Did you know? At birth, children have almost all the neurons they’ll ever have in their life. These neurons double in size by one year and reaches 80% of its adult volume by the time the child turns three!

Keeping in mind the pace at which their mental development takes place and the incredible amount of potential that they possess, it’s crucial for us to make each of their activities a learning experience for them.

According to researches, kids between the age of 1-3 prefer ‘functional play’ i.e. they like to play with the same toy again and again until they master the game and gain confidence to move on to the next toy. This phase is pivotal in encouraging ‘learning skills through play’.

Moreover, consider purchasing toys that grow with the baby. For example, as the baby grows and learns more concepts of one area, their toys should also get more advanced and challenging in that specific area. When practiced in this manner, their skills get sharpened and they master even complex concepts easily.

Skola, one of the most renowned toy brands, has a myriad of Montessori inspired toys for kids between 1-8 years of age. Most of their collection involves multi-sensory approach that has been proved effective in making kids better learners, problem solvers and analysts by improving their memory, fine motor and logical reasoning skills.

Types of incrementally challenging toys you can consider for your babies:

1. Toys that enhance their fine motor skills:

Stackers for young kids and toys involving complex hand manipulations and balancing for older kids– you’ll find a variety of toys that help not only in strengthening of smaller muscles but also improve their eye co-ordination and problem solving ability.

To buy an age-appropriate toy under this category, click here

2. Toys that teach about colours and shapes:

Toys like: Matching the other half of the given object/figure, understanding the intensity of colours, pairing similar objects based on their shapes etc. are some great options in this segment.

This learning will help them in identifying individual colours and geometric shapes and distinguishing them from one another. It’ll also help them understand that both of these are key attributes of all physical objects.

To buy an age-appropriate toy under this category, click here

3. Number games:

This is one of the key areas to work on because understanding of numbers early on sets a solid foundation for all the future arithmetic calculations.

Consider purchasing toys that help in visually associating numbers with physical objects, which thus makes the child understand that each number signifies a specific quantity.

To buy an age-appropriate toy under this category, click here

4. Word games:

Did you know? Babies begin to distinguish speech sounds by 10 months! The first stage of language development is preverbal communication- where they use gestures, cues and noises to get their message conveyed. Once they’re 1.5 years old, they begin to use specific words for specific things. In order to strengthen their vocabulary, frequently using complex words with phonograms helps a lot. Not just that, it sets a firm base for reading and writing and thus making the child confident in communication.

Games that include easy crosswords or word building activities are best for this age.

To buy an age-appropriate toy under this category, click here

5. Toys that focus on pattern formation:

Such toys help them identify similar objects, arrange them through logical reasoning and comprehend distinguished patterns. It expands their problem solving skills and makes them better analysts.

Toys like building blocks or puzzles are great choices for this learning.

To buy an age-appropriate toy under this category, click here

You don’t have to always sit with a book and a pen to teach, make learning fun by including it in all the activities that a child performs!

Thanks for stopping by and reading!

Happy parenting!

Love,

Elina

P.S. This is a sponsored post.

Image Courtesy: Skola’s Official Website

My Mom Was Right!

There’s no denial to the fact that our mothers are always right. In fact, even if they aren’t sometimes, it’s always ideal to stick with the belief that they are 😀

For me and my brother, funnily enough, we had no choice. I don’t know if it was a creepy yet funny coincidence, mere childhood innocence or just our perspective of looking at things, but whenever my mom told us to do (or not do) something and we didn’t oblige, something strange happened. Not sometimes, but always! For instance, if we were watching TV after school and she wanted us to have lunch, and if we didn’t obey, there used to be a sudden power cut. Or when we played computer games and she wanted us to study, the computer used to stop working suddenly.

Now as I write this, I realise that she was probably very smart! Having a power cut or stopping the computer from working isn’t something a person can’t do 😂

Long story short, we grew up believing that mothers are always right and that we should obey them no matter what. And then, adolescence happened, which changed our mind altogether. Sadly, there were other people, books, modern scientific facts etc. which started to influence us and unlike how we felt in our childhood, our mom wasn’t the most perfect person on the planet anymore!

I then got married and found out about my pregnancy. She stood like a rock behind me and took care of me like no one else throughout. She was there beck and call for me and attended to my tiniest need!

In 9 months (which back then looked like a decade), I delivered my baby, and for her, a whole new project began- ‘Project Customary 40 Days’. Right from arranging a masseuse for me to making different varieties of food, she had everything covered.

Throughout the duration, I kept arguing with her, telling her that I don’t need massages and I don’t want special food, that I’m a normal human and want to be dealt with normally, but she insisted on doing these things because ‘they made her happy’.

After those 40 days were over and I came back home, I realised how right she has been!

Since I had a cesarean section, giving me light massages helped in early recovery and made me feel good from within. It also lowered my postpartum depression significantly, because who doesn’t find massages soothing to the nerves, afterall?

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The food I was given- i.e. hot bajra rotla (thick chapatis made of Bajra flour) topped with a dollop of ghee along with some fresh vegetable sabji, was just the right food I was supposed to eat. Bajra being high in carbohydrates gives sufficient energy and keeps us full while ghee has enough fat which ensures that the pace of digestion is slowed down- together which keeps us satiated for a long duration. The problem with lactation is that we feel hungry very often and this was her master plan to keep overeating and junk intake off the table.

Sometimes I think, no matter how alluring western lifestyle may be, but our basics are always right! And so are our moms!

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This post is a part of a blog train organised by me where I brought 20 Indian moms together to write on how their own mothers were right!

Also, make sure to check this interesting article written on the same topic by a fellow mom blogger, Nayantara (click here to reach her page)

<< t;<<< Thank you for stopping by and reading this article! Take care and happy mothering! Love, Elina

What Happened When I Kept My Phone Away While Nursing My Baby?

Long before I got pregnant, I made a list of things that I’d do when I breast-feed my baby— from talking to her and caressing her hair to reciting holy books and lullabies. And believe me, I did it all, for one complete month. And then, before I realised, I was aimlessly scrolling through my phone every time I nursed her. It slowly became a routine.

Every time she was hungry, I picked her up and began to nurse even without noticing her cues, looking at her face or seeing those pretty eyes.

As she grew, she learnt to play with my top, tried to pull my nose and put her fingers inside my mouth to touch my teeth, while I kept my self busy checking my notifications on Facebook and Instagram, watching random YouTube videos or simply checking deals on Shopping sites.

Honestly, deep down inside me, I hated myself and felt the guilt, but just like many other things we don’t like but still continue to do, this too became the same.

Soon I started to write parenting articles and the best time I could do that was when I nursed her. Albiet, my focus had changed and I was making more constructive use of this time, nonetheless, my actions remained the same.

Just like that, 2018 commenced. I was going through the resolutions made by people on the New Year’s Eve, and saw many people mention ‘Phone Detox’ as one of their goals. It was then it struck me, that I don’t need a complete detox, but there’s one thing that I really need to work on and that was- ‘Quality Nursing Time.’

I didn’t wait to jot it down in a planner or streamline my daily routine to work on it, but I chose to start immediately. That’s the thing about goals- you don’t always need to plan and wait for the right time, you just need to buckle up and start working on them as soon as possible.

After I made up my mind and it was time to nurse her, I held her in my arms and gave her a huge welcoming smile as I unbuttoned. She looked back at me with a twinkle in her eyes- the kind I’d never seen before. I realised how beautiful this little girl of mine was- so innocent and angelic. Throughout the nursing session I kept caressing her hair and read out lullabies and chants, just like I had planned to. I looked at her hands and noticed the cute dimples that she had below her fingers; I saw her face and noticed how it was full of enthusiasm; I saw her feet which constantly wiggled throughout. She continued to look at me and I noticed how the magic of breastmilk slowly worked and how beautifully she drifted off to sleep. Yes, that was my girl- the little squish that came out of me a couple of months ago, who was so delicate and tiny that she couldn’t even turn her head in the direction she wanted and here she is- all grown up and ready to walk independently. How quickly all these months flew by!

We often say kids grow up in the blink of an eye, but the truth is that we are so occupied in ourselves that we forget to notice them grow. Things like notifications, calls, shopping etc. can wait, we can do those when our little ones are asleep, but our children will never be this little again. They’ll never run to us to get a hug, they’ll never find joy in coming to us to get milk, they’ll never play peekaboo with our tshirts when they eat and they’ll probably never love us with the same pure feelings as they do today.

Someday in the future, we would scroll through their photos and miss these days! Why not cuddle and snuggle them as much we can before these lovely moments are gone?

Nursing our little ones is not just another mom-duty. It’s an unparalleled bond that we share which is like nothing else in the world. It’s like giving a part of yourself to your baby- the kind of nourishment and nurturing she will receive from no one ever! It’s therapeutic, not just for them but for us mothers too. Try to live in the moment- to feel the flow of liquid gold from your body to your baby’s and experience the magnificence. Try to make nursing sessions bonding times with your baby. Researchers have found that the strength of mothers emotional bond with the baby may trump all the other cautionary measures we take- like vaccinations, monthly check ups with the paediatrician etc., to help the baby thrive. A close attachment can prevent diseases, boost immunity and even enhance their IQ! Isn’t that amazing?

I’m still working on this and I urge you to try too! 🙂 I’m sure you’ll thank me for this.

Love,

Elina

(Just another mother who errs and learns)

P.S. Please excuse all the typos and errors. Wrote this while my little bundle of joy was sleeping. You know the time crunch we mothers have 🙈