Monday, July 30, 2007

Sleeping prince!

A post about A's sleeping habits ....

My (almost 3) son A, slept in his room in his cot from month one. A+ and me , both were quite comfortable and guiltfree in taking this decision. It was going fine. In the begining, I used to roam/walk in his room and put him to sleep. We both loved this part and things were just fine till the time when I was terribly down with chicken pox for one week. (me being one of those few unfortunate people who did not have pox in my was AWFUL !!) During this phase, A+ was totally at a loss..with so many things to help..small baby...sick wife...and he STOPPED this roaming-before-sleep-business..he says HAD to and I understand!
When I finally came out of this pox thing after a week , I was super amazed to find A being just PUT in bed after dinner ...and he was falling asleep on HIS OWN!! So after giving his milk around 8:00, he slept and we had some time to just laze on the sofa staring at the idiot box!
and the bliss continued......
till ...tilll...till....
I started feeling that the cot was too small for him now ( I am sure i heard him hit the sides at night)..and we must move him to a proper size bed! A+ kept on saying " its ok...he is not getting hurt..because he is not be cool D...things will automatically move forward as he grows..." . But I was in one of my "super-mom" the end result ??..a new bed came....the cot was packed off...and H-O-I-L-A!!
NO!!!..things did not happen as I dreamt of.. A refused to sleep in his new bed! ABSOLUTE REFUSAL!! no room for any discussion.........he started sleeping with big disadvantage of our master bed is that its actually two beds joined together with separate lifting mechanisms with all sorts of motors etc underneath(where the beds can be lifted for reading positions, for body massage etc) we were a bit scared to have A in between...anyway, changes were made by deactivating the move mechanism and stuffing the tiny gap with all sorts of bed sheets etc...
A was very happy...and slept on peacefully!! We were happy too in a way....but did not want to make this a habit. [ Most discussions ended in a way when A+ would have that "I told you so"looks ....]

We kept the "beautifying-the-bed" thing on.......

Now, as of today....things have changed a bit...A sleeps in his room (I go to bed with him)...but around 2:30 am he comes walking to our room with his winnie(pooh) and mac-queen(CARS) and his pillow !!When I take him to bed, I have the intention of putting him to sleep and coming back to my bed... I tell him a story..(he usually loves the story of Nemo or CARS)...and then kiss him goodnight and lie by his side...he keeps playing for a while and then falls asleep...but but then the mama is snoring off to glory too ..all her intentions down the drain....
when the mama wakes up, its around 1:00 am..she sleepily walks to her bed...tries to fall asleep takes some time...around 2:00 she manages to fall asleep only to be awoken by the sleepy A (WITH his family pooh, cars, etc etc)....10 mins....all settled...15 mins later I try to turn on my side and CRUUUUNNNCH...there goes the small hot wheels cars under my back....

life goes on...............We love every moment of it............

To end with two positive points:
1. When I open my eyes...the prince smiles at me and gives me the hug-of-the-day!
2. Everyone tells me..with age the prince will start loving his room and that will give us the 8 hrs sleep we love!


Sunday, July 29, 2007

Help Wanted...

(This post by Sandeepa of Bong Mom's Cook Book)
Only a few days ago I had gloated about the “pleasure” in doing everything by ones self for the kids. The blog is jinxed as Kodi’s Mom would say and I am in desperate need of help now. Little S is sick with some viral infection, fevers are running as high as 102F/103F. It’s been like this since Monday midnight. Me and D has been alternating at home. I have no clue how I will manage the next week. Though my hours at work are less, I have to be physically present there at least if I don’t want to blow up all my leaves. The hubby has some people/client coming in next week and he can take off a day and half at the most. Sending S to school is out of question. Even if the fever goes down, she will be very weak because of her “satyagraha” activities. So I will in no circumstances send her to school next week.

The fever has made little S very clingy too. She tries to be cheerful in between but rest of the time she wants to lie down in the crook of my arms. So I lie and think of what I can write in my blog but never get around to writing it.

Also since I have a slight (ahem !) case of OCD, in middle of all this chaos I want to dust the top of the dresser and at the back of my head I have a thought that I haven’t cleaned up the stove top yet.

And what do I want most in such a situation? I want S to be in the comfort of home for at least 2 weeks even when she is better and I don't know how this can be accomplished. I also want some caring person who can watch her at the comfort of my own home or at least take care of the home, for just 3-4 hours while me & the hubby can fleet in and out of work. I see the smirk on your face, the glint in your eyes, the “I told you so”. Ok, but I do not know of any one who meets the norms so it’s going to be me or the Dad, but yes “Help” would have “Helped”…

We are just back from the ER since the fever was really high and the ped had taken the evening flight out to the golden days of vacation. All is fine it seems and there is some kind of viral going on causing high fever for several days. So the liitle girl is back on Ibuprofen.

Some lessons learnt in the process:

This is the first time S is running such a high fever and that too for so many days. So we got a little worried today. But it seems with certain viral infection fever can go up to 103F/104F for several (5-7) days. This is accompanied with loss of appetite and some body aches

Fluids, fluids and fluids. Easier said than done. Try giving a cranky, sick child fluid that has high calorie value and she is going to throw it all over you. But still try you must. The Doc said to give stuff like popsicle, frozen yogurt etc. too. I am not used to giving a sick child with stuffed nose, popsicles from the freezer but it seems to be ok. Also I was avoiding the milk though S wanted it, but again the Doc said to let her have it

No need to force feed a sick child though fluids are extremely important. Listening to my Ma I have tried feeding S Macher Jhol-Bhat (very light fish curry and rice), khichuri and lots of other things. All in vain and precious time was spent in cooking up such things. All she had was a little noodles smeared in Ketchup. It is very good if you can feed and the child wants to eat, else giving high calorie drinks might help

A bath helps. The ice pack on the forehead helps and the bath definitely helps too.

ER can be fine. I generally have a fear of all things medical. So when the Doc said I should take S to the ER I panicked. But it was fine actually. The hospital had a separate pediatric ER and it was cheerful and happy.

P.S: Does anyone know of any agency or something from where help can be hired sporadically ?

To be continued, so watch out in a day or two....

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Pick your Own...

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Trees are the earth's endless effort to speak to the listening heaven -- Tagore

Seeing Chandrika’s post made me do this. Yes, finally. I had a yearning to take little S to the orchards where she can get to “pick her own” fruits. Not that that would make her eat all her fruits with a glee but just because she would know that fruits grew on trees and not in Shop Rite. With my tomato and beans and okra (last year) plants she has got the hang of where they come from but she was yet to see a fruit laden tree from where you could pluck them. So since I couldn’t grow a fruit tree in my backyard I thought the best would be to take her to the orchards

Last week was pretty hectic with some unexpected but very welcome guests popping in and staying with us for the better part of the week. The guest was my friend with her 4 year old en route to India who had to stop and spend time at my place due to some messed up travel plan. Since it was summer but the heat was not overbearing we took the kids to an orchard near my home. The strawberry season was over and the peaches were just ripening to be picked, so peaches it was.

The rows and rows of peach trees were laden with fruits, there was fruit hanging from all possible branches and the kids had a fun time plucking them and plonking them in the basket. They ran through the trees, hung on the delicate branches (you are not really allowed to do that) and had a general good time.

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Little hands picking the fruit

I would suggest a trip to these orchards a very good way to entertain your kids during summer. Its relaxing, exhilarating and reminds you of the days when you would climb up the guava tree and get a bunch of green guavas in the nook of your long A line frock.

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Luscious Peaches

Some links to Pick your Own farms
Pick your Farm from here -- State by State listing
Pick your Farm in NJ -- NJ listings

(this post shared in part at Bong Mom's Cook Book)

Interesting Read..

I found this article while browsing yesterday - an interesting read...

Friday, July 20, 2007

Invitations, cakes and the last day...

Posted by Sunita.
(It has also been published at Sunita's World.)

It's the kids' birthdays next month...a week apart from each other( an expensive month for us ;) ). But as this is their last week before the summer break, it meant that they had to give out their invitations a bit earlier...and that is what they did yesterday.

Last year, we had a joint garden party for them, but this time we felt that they both needed their own space and should celebrate it on their own special day as their friend circle has grown. I had really slaved a lot last year...getting organised, from many days ahead. But as luck would have it, I was taken terribly ill just a few days before the party. They had been really looking forward to it and would have been heartbroken...well, I too was...after all, it's only once a year. I somehow baked the cakes for them as I had promised...{ the pictures have been scanned, hence are a bit blurry :( }...
and on the day of the party, it was down to the handful of my close friends who saved the day... I was too weak and would probably not have been able to do it on my own if they hadn't pitched in...thanks to them, the kids had a lovely time with all their friends in our garden.

This year, we're taking things a bit slow. I'm a bit wary and so we've decided not to have the party at home. So we've hired a children's activity centre on both the days. The cake still has to be made though, and they have already mentioned the design they want it to be!!!
We made the invitations at home...I helped a bit with the layout and they drew the little pictures...
They were so excited to hand them out...some of them have already confirmed, but then, as they fall during the holidays, a few of them are going to be away vacationing, which is a bit disappointing for them, especially if that friend happens to be a special one...but well, that can't be helped, so...

Well, today is their last day before the summer break...on the reopening of their school, they will be in a new class with a new teacher...still can't help at wondering at what we all say quite often...'how time flies'...but it is true, isn't it...we are so caught up in the humdrum of our day to day life, that only on reaching a milestone do we realise as to how time has really flown by...

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Nature Deficit Disorder* and Summer Time

Nature Deficit Disorder
(* word coined by author Richard Louv who wrote the book
Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children from Nature-Deficit Disorder)

Not so long ago the biggest worry Parents had over the summer was to keep kids from getting too much sun on their heads. Summer was for lazing in the sun exploring the interesting things around the house and looking in nook and cranies or if you were like most kids the exploration happened at your grandparents house where all semblance of rules or regulations were thrown to the wind. Meals times were for special foods that you craved for. Bolt! Clap! Thunder.... Well I was day dreaming there for a while or maybe it was the sound from DDs computer game. What parents worry about today is that kids these days are having less and less of unstructured time. No spontaneous games or role playing so much so that kids left in the playground to play by themselves or not able to do so, they need rules and regulations. Well I won't go on and on, this topic is HOT as it is.

What as parents can we do keep to bring this deficit down? My favorite season to work on it is during the summer. There is no excuse of bad weather to keep cooped indoors in front of the many electronic equipments we can't live without. Though DD suggested the idea of summer camp, I begged my mother to come and stay with us for the summer so DDs can have a relaxing, carefree time without worrying about too many planned activities. What this has done to their time is,

They wake up at their own covenience, eat a slow breakfast, take long walks, catch some butterflies, with a fish net they fished from the basement, figure out if the butterfly will survive if it is kept in a closed box and should the holes for them to breathe be big or small. This amazingly keeps them occupied for hours together which no video game has the power to do. Rarely have I heard the the oh so familiar whine "I am bored". Eat a relaxing lunch, laze around in the afternoon and then some bicycling in the evening followed by catching lightning bugs as the sun goes down, do some research about the creatures living under rocks, though all of the activities do not happen on the same day it keeps them occupied for most of the day. Being outdoors so much makes them notice things, I was delighted when I heard DD analyze the different colors of purple found in nature, as luck would have it purple is her favorite color and even if I buy flower bulbs of differnt colors and shades they are the only ones that bloom and recently she happened to see a brinjal flower. But this fun is different then the ones we had, we roamed around the whole village just stepping into the house during meal times.

A crow cawing on a bright sunny morning and usually happens when I am driving out to work, brings on a longing for those summer days of my childhood in my grandparents' house and a guilt that DDs don't get to have that experience of swimming in the rivers, swimming in wells, fishing in the ponds, climbing on mango trees and being bitten by ants. Sometimes the trees we climbed on and the wells we jumped into belonged to people who did not want us there and we got chased by these angry people with a stick in hand which was a game in itself. I have no recollection of ever being caught by these angry people though.

With my mom here, DH's aunt visiting us for this week and DD's friend here during the day for 2 weeks we have a full house and it is such a joy and this is what I miss the most about India the PEOPLE.

I was listening to the Diane Rehm show on WAMU when I heard author Richard Louv talk about his book Last Child in the Woods and it struck a chord but that was a long time ago but what brought about this bout of introspection was the news of Lady Bird Johnson and reading and about her tireless work for conservation and love of wild flowers.

Sandeepa has posed the question if DD missed not going to camp? Her answer was "I have never been to a camp". But DD's friend answered the question to her mom last summer. She wanted to stay home and not go to camp which required keeping a schedule. unScheduled unHurried is what makes them happy is my final conclusion

Also posted on my blog Daily Musings.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Help or No Help ?

I was reading this post at The Mad momma’s yesterday and the post and the comments made me feel as if I am in a parallel universe. Maids for my kid, one or in multiples? Help that takes care of my child while I go for beauty treatments or whatever else treatments? Are there even options like that out there?

Most of you moms (unless you are Warren Buffet or married to someone like that) staying outside India do not have a house help who takes care of the kid I guess. You can have nannies but they are not there to take care of the kids whims and fancies while you rush in and out of beauty parlors or coffee shops. If you have to take your kids to the peds, you do it. If to the park again it’s you (or the hubby). If your kid wants a certain dinner or certain lunch for school, you cook it up. If your kid is sick, you stay up all night, alternate work days with the hubby, come back home bleary eyed to cook and feed the child, and have a restless night again. All in all you are involved in all aspects of your child. Fact is you do not have a choice but to do it yourself.

I do pine for some help, specially when I am back from work and try to rest a little and the now 3 and ½ year old thinks I should have taken my nap at office and this is time for jumping around like her. But I know this is my child and not my neigbour’s, so smiling and saying “Darling” and making “sweet talk” or reading a couple of books alone at the end of the day is not enough. I have to be involved in every aspect of her life. I have never had the good fortune to have a house help (except for the lady who drops in to clean) and I don’t know how their existence would have changed my life or my involvement with my daughter. All I know is if there’s anything that needs to get done for her it’s her parents that have to do it. There simply is no choice.

Its not only about "quality time", a phrase used very very widely these days, kids also need time in "quantity" from their parents. I as a parent feel my role is not only to read a few books and make trips to the park with her. My job as a parent calls for much more. The fact that I do all the small chores for her from cooking to feeding to taking her to bed to teaching her to use the bathroom to washing her up makes me feel very satisfied. Maybe I do not do all these to perfection and it also takes up a lot of my time, time that I could have spent at the park with her, but at the end of the day I feel I have done my best for my daughter. Afetr all we did have fun together making shapes out of the flour dough while I rolled out rotis and we can go to the park tomorrow...

What do you think? If you have a house help at all to help with the kid, how do you distribute the kids work with her? If you don’t have one, how much do you think you would let the house help be involved with your kids work/activities?

To stir up some interest during a lethargic summer week day I am writing this. I am neither for or against house help/maid or anything. So please post your views as you feel it.

Hunger Strike

This post is by Kodi's Mom of Kodimeow Kronicles.

I have heard and read enough about toddler's hunger strikes enough that I now think this is a milestone in their lives. My 22mo just started his. He doesn't want to eat anything at all. Let me rephrase that, he does want to eat. But only potato chips, popcorn, icecream. Regular food is totally out.

Till a few weeks ago, he was fairly good with meals. He enjoyed food and would ask for more if he really liked it. But, that has changed overnight. We have tried everything we could think of: offered him a wide range of foods for each meal, not force him, let him starve till he took the initiative and asked for it... but nothign has worked yet. Other than water (and the afore mentioned junk food), he doesn't care for anything.

Do all toddlers really go through this phase? What is the best way to ride it out? How long have you seen it last? (please don't tell me forever!)

ps: I tried some of the tips in this wonderful article on Daily Tiffin. Some he is too young for, some we have had minimal success with.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Month one...

Posted by Cee Kay
Note: I have this post up on my blog too.

...went by pretty quickly. And there is so much I want to share. So much I want to record. Somewhere I feel bad that I didn't get to do this for S. But, blogging wasn't around at that time (or if it was, I wasn't aware of it) and I am not much of a scrapbook kind of person. I'll try and remember things about S when she was at a similar stage and record them here. Actually, I don't want to record just Baby M's milestones. I want to record OUR milestones together - as parents, as older sister, as the new baby in the family. I am too lazy, no make that BUSY, to record all these milestones separately.

Sometimes I look at Baby M and realize that I never got to see that stage of S just because when she was born in Indore, I would hardly get her. She was always in someone else's arms. And since I didn't nurse her much, I didn't have even that excuse to keep her with me. Some would call it the benefit of living in a joint family - that there were so many to take care of her. I and J think of it as a drawback. We never got to spend that precious time with our daughter. We wouldn't have minded sharing her, but sometimes I feel like we had to give her up. And the fact is that no one shared the responsibilities - they were all ours. We hardly got any help. Anyway, that's in the past. And material for another post. One that I don't feel inclined to write/revisit anyway.

The first thing we realized as new parents this time was that we were so relaxed. I mean, no relatives clamoring to hold your baby, no unsolicited advices (well, not entirely true - but that is material for another post - hopefully coming up soon), no one trying to implement their parenting techniques behind our backs and no one snatching Baby M from my arms when she cried saying "Give her to me - you are making her cry!". (Yup! That did happen when I had S)

I stayed in the hospital for four nights and was discharged on Saturday. Friday night, as every other night, I sent Baby M to the nursery after feeding her, but then somehow couldn't sleep and got this uneasiness in my chest. Somehow I was certain that Baby M was not doing very well and needed me. So I got out of my bed and went to the nursery just to check. There the nurse told me that her temperature had gone down so low that she had to be put under the warming lamps. She was doing fine by then. I brought her back and kept her with me all night after that - I think (somehow, I can't remember much of the time that I spent in the hospital)
Saturday, we came home and our life as a family of four started. Its been a fast month. Baby M has grown so much, and we have come to know how we have grown since we had S more than 8 years ago. Every day brings some new experiences. And as I was telling a friend of mine - each day also brings confirmation of which "system" of hers is now working :D For example, now we know she has strong lungs because she can scream. About two weeks back, when Baby M stopped crying upon hearing her big sister's voice, it was confirmed that her hearing is fine too! Then last week we knew her eyes are perfect when she started following us around the room with her eyes. Lungs - check. Ears - check. Eyes - check. Apetite - check. Will keep updating the "inventory" as time goes by :D

Baby M has the kind of hair that stands up ALL THE TIME - much like Mad Momma's Grouchy Max :D When I was in the hospital, I thought the nurses were just having some fun trying to shape her hair like a mohawk. But the first time I gave her a bath I realized that her hair does that on its own. Now, S lovingly shapes it into a Mohawk every day!

My first thought when I looked at Baby M was "Oh my Gosh!! I'd forgotten that they come so tiny!!" She was so tiny (6 lbs 6 oz at birth and 5lbs 11 oz when discharged from the hospital) that she would get lost even in Newborn sized clothing! And she just loved to pull her feet up and scrunch up like a ball which often resulted in tangled limbs inside body suits or a bunched up M with the feet of the body suit left hanging limply. And then she would scream at the top of her lungs to be freed from it! Now she has started filling up those newborn sized body suits better. And doesn't look like a "bodysuit on a hanger" anymore.

One thing in which she is exactly like S is that she loves the massages and bath time rituals. She cries her head off when I take the clothes off but once I start massaging or when I pour water on her she just gets quiet and looks around as if saying "Who? Me? No! I wasn't screaming!"

And like S, she likes a good night's sleep. Since the age of about 1 week, she hasn't taken more than one feed during the night. Of course, she goes to bed late at around 1 or 2 am, but she eats only every 4-5 hours which is VERY good for a newborn, I say. Her doctor did tell me not to let her sleep for more than 5 hours without eating but she regularly sleeps for 4-5 hours during night time. During the day she feeds more frequently - about every 2.5 - 3 hours or so. So all is good on that front. S did that too - started sleeping through the night pretty early but being a first-time parent then, I'd wake her up every 2-3 hours and feed her. Then her pediatrician yelled at me (sort of) saying "Moms all around the world are trying to get their babies to sleep longer and you are waking yours up??" :P Never made that mistake again :D

One area where M is different from S is swaddling. S loved it. So much so that she wouldn't go to sleep without being swaddled. It became so much of a problem later that I had to "train" her to sleep without swaddling at three months. But M dislikes it totally. So I let her sleep without swaddling during the day. But at night, when she is very tired but unable to sleep on her own (and keeps hitting herself in the face with her fist :D), I swaddle her tight. She hates it and strains against it to get free but I just hold her legs down gently for a few minutes until she falls asleep.

There is so much more to record - my birthing experience this time, my memories from the first time, the annoying advices and some friends' hospital visits, my on-going struggle with lactation, times when I got frustrated because of that, how we coped being alone at this time, how S is coping etc. So much to write, so little time! Hope I get around to it soon.

S is for....

This post is by Kodi's Mom of Kodimeow Kronicles.

S is for..

..sprinklers, dancing, twirling ones.
...sunny evenings, that last forever.
....sleeveless shirts.
.....shortest shorts.
......shadows - long and tall ones.
.......shade, from young trees.

S is for SUMMER!

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Sheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee's here!!

Posted by Cee Kay from My2CentsToo

Note: I posted this on my blog some time back but didn't get the time to post it here until now.

Well, I know that everyone knows that she is here - has been here for over 5 weeks now. But I still can't believe that we finally have a baby that we were so desparate for! I call her my "miracle baby". Not because she was conceived with IVF - it is a fairly common procedure these days. But because I had given up all hope and never imagined in my wildest dreams that I would hold another baby in my arms ever again - unless it was someone else's. After the last IVF cycle, my doctor called me to say he didn't have very high hopes of that cycle succeeding either but not to lose hope. He said if this cycle fails we will meet to discuss further options. Given all this, I didn't have any hopes of getting pregnant with that cycle. When the nurse called me on October 10th with the pregnancy test results, I was expecting her to say "I am sorry, you are not pregnant this time either" like she had 4 times before that. So, when she said "You are pregnant" my response was "You sure???". So you see why this one is my miracle baby?

Baby M was born on Tuesday, June 5th at 1:33 pm. When I heard her first sqawk (I swear that is what she sounded like!) I was overcome with emotions. I first congratulated J, who was right by my side, then I started crying. The anaesthesiologist, who was monitoring me constantly, came and wiped my tears with a tissue. That was the sweetest thing and I forgave him for sticking me with a big scary needle in my spine earlier.

I wish I had the time to write about my birthing experience this time (and the first time too - for that matter) but I really don't. I probably will - have been thinking about it for along time - but not right now. Right now, all I can think of is what I have (and not what I have been through) - two beautiful daughters. The reality that I have two kids now to take care of hasn't sunk in yet.

The little one is an angel - when she is not screaming her head off. Yup! She is a screamer :D All I can say for her screaming abilities is that her lungs are getting stronger each day. When she was born, I immediately noticed that she didn't cry as loud as her big sister did when she was born(Remember? "Sqawk"??). But boy! She has more than tripled her screaming and screeching capacity in these 3 weeks!! Feed her and she sleeps like an angel. If she wants to be fed, dillay-dally at your own risk. It is better to jump to attention and do what Her Highness demands!

Things haven't been easy so far. As it happened the first time, this time around too I am having lactation problems. The day I was discharged from the hospital, Baby M went without pooping for almost 20 hours (3 days, as it later turned out) and without wetting a diaper for over 6 hours. That concerned me and the nurse I called for help said I should start supplementing her with formula after every feed.

So I have to supplement her with formula almost after every feed. And pump milk to increase supply. The pumping is killing me - even a 15 minute session leaves me feeling like someone is sucking blood out of me. My breasts and nipples are so sore and swollen they hurt even if I look at them. Yet, I grit my teeth, curl my toes and shut my eyes tight and put her on the breast every 2 hours even though I feel I couldn't go through it another time. All in the hopes that my milk supply will increase enough so I can stop supplementing her. Oh, how I wish I were one of those women who lactate like a cow! I really, truly wanted to nurse exclusively this time. But, as J pointed out one day when I was especially depressed due to this - having Baby M is the most important thing. We never imagined we would have another baby. Lack of lactation just doesn't figure as high on our priority list in the scheme of things. More so because S was on formula from almost the beginning and she turned out fine. In fact, she didn't fall sick as much as other kids I saw around us. I am not disputing breast milk's effect on building up a baby's immunity. It was probably my obsessive compulsion in cleaning and boiling the milk bottles that kept the infections at bay. And anyway, this time at least I am nursing. I didn't get to do that with S at all.

Apart from this, we are managing well. There is so much to write about how we coped those first couple of weeks, how certain friends drove me crazy with their non-stop advice, how the Big sister was excited when the baby got here, how I was scared sh**less (:D I somehow love that experssion) before the C-section and a lot of other things. Maybe later. I have this huge jumble of thoughts in my mind right now that doesn't make any sense through that sleep-deprived haze that I am in.

I am breaking my self-imposed ban on posting any personal pictures of myself or my family and leaving you with a picture of Baby M. I also have one of the two sisters together - will post it as soon as I can get it out of my camera onto my laptop.


Tuesday, July 10, 2007

A fwd that made me think

I dont know if any one of you have recieved this forwarded email. When ever I recieve any fwds I research a little to know if the news is fake or real. Learnt it from my hubby. I would first want you all to read it and then tell me what went on, in your heads.

> >>>
> >>>
> >>>McDonalds, Chuck E Cheese, Discovery Zone... All places with ball
> pits
> >>>in the children's play area.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> 1. One of my sons lost his watch, and was very upset. We dug and
> dug
> >>>in those balls, trying to find his watch. Instead, we found vomit,
> >>>food, faeces, and other stuff I do not want to discuss.
> >>>
> >>>I went to the manager and raised hell. Come to find out, the ball
> pit
> >>>is only cleaned out once a month. I have doubts that it is even done
> >>>that often.
> >>>
> >>>My kids will never play in another ball pit.
> >>>
> >>> 2. Some of you might not be parents, but you may have nieces,
> nephews,
> >>>grandchildren, or friends with children. This will pertain to you
> too.
> >>>As I read the following, my heart sank. I urge each and every one of
> >>>you to pass this on to as many people as you can. I cannot stress
> how
> >>>important this is!
> >>>Hi. My name is Lauren Archer, my son Kevin and I lived in
> Midland,TN.
> >>>On October 2nd, 1999 I took my only son to McDonald's for his 3rd
> >>>birthday.
> >>>
> >>>After he finished lunch, I allowed him to play in the ball pit. When
> he
> >>>started whining later on, I asked him what was wrong, he pointed to
> the
> >>>back of his pull-up and simply said "Mommy, it hurts." I couldn't
> find
> >>>anything wrong with him at that time. I bathed him when we got home,
> >>>and it was at that point when I found a welt on his left buttock.
> Upon
> >>>investigating, it seemed as if there was something like a splinter
> >>>under the welt. I made an appointment to see the doctor the next
> day,
> >>>but soon he started vomiting and shaking, then his eyes rolled back
> >>>into his head. From there, we went to the emergency room. He died
> later
> >>>that night.
> >>>
> >>>It turned out that the welt on his buttock was the tip of a
> hypodermic
> >>>needle that had broken off inside.
> >>>
> >>>The autopsy revealed that Kevin had died from a heroine overdose.
> >>>The next week, the police removed the balls from the ball pit. There
> >>>was rotten food, several hypodermic needles: some full, some used;
> >>>knives, half-eaten candy, diapers, feces, and the stench of urine.
> >>>
> >>> (You can find the article on Kevin Archer in the October 10,1999
> issue
> >>>of the Midland Chronicle.)
> >>>
> >>>3. Don't think it's just McDonald's either. A little boy had been
> >>>playing in a ball pit @ a Burger King & started complaining of his
> legs
> >>>hurting.
> >>>He later died too. He was found to have snake bites all over his
> legs &
> >>>buttocks.
> >>>When they cleaned the ball pit they found that there was a
> copperhead's
> >>>nest in the ball pit. He had suffered numerous bites from a very
> >>>poisonous snake.
> >>>
> >>>Repost this if it scares the crap out of you!!
> >>>Repost this if you care about kids!!
> >>>Please forward this to all loving mothers, fathers and anyone who
> loves
> >>>and cares for children!!
> >>>What has this world come to?? If a child is not safe in a child's
> play
> >>>area then where??
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>"

When I researched on google about this incident, lot of reports said that it is all made up story and there is no such news paper( the news paper with that name does not exist), such people never existed and such incidents never happened.
But what made me think was why do people have to make up all this? It also made me think do I have to keep my kid away from the Ball pits. What if they were not cleaned regularly? what if someone was really affected in one of those ways.
All these thoughts really freaked me up.

In one of the articles, which said these news were fake, they mentioned that the parents should be careful while letting their kids in there. Parents should check if every thing was safe. Is it only the Parents duty? Does anyone know how difficult it is to get in to the ball pit for an adult. It sounds funny but I had a real tough time once to bring my Son out of it when he did not know how to come out.
I am looking forward for all your views.

Friday, July 6, 2007

Midsummer DayDream

This post is by Poppins of BabiesAnon

Bangalore has only three seasons, cool, warm, unpredictable! Summer this year was very hot but lasted only all of two months. It's raining now and some days are so darn depressing. Especially with an active toddler at home. Ever since I saw this theme for July, I started thinking about significant summers. Should I write about the hot sleepy summers I spent in a vilage in Kerala as a kid? Or about the out-all-day-and-night summers during my Engineering study holidays? Nah.

I don't have any special memories of a summer with poppin yet. So I thought why not create some?

I took a day off this week because my MIL had some pressing work. It's been a while since I took the day off when neither poppin nor me were sick. Plus I didn't have any chores to finish. In order to take full advantage of my unexpected time with poppin, I decided to do some special things with her. This would also be a step towards making some fun memories and record them someplace.

We're members of a neighborhood club that also has a park attached to it. So I decided that we would do a picnic in the wooded area of the park,(Tharini style) and then perhaps swimming and lunch at the club.

Nothing special to that really. I've done all of the above, not necessarily at the same time. What was going to make it special was my attitude towards it. This was a special day I was spending with poppin, I would dress up, dress her up, we would walk down to the park without a care in the world and just focus on having fun.

Unfortunately, the maid played truant that day and while waiting for her, poppin got hungry. So I had to feed her lunch at home. All hope was not lost though. So what if we could not do a picnic? We would still do the park, the usual rides that we do. Except that this time, I would take my camera along so that I have some pictures to put on this blog ! Talk about composing posts in my mind !

So I put her into a white summery dress, packed snacks, water, swim clothes for me and her, and a change of clothes incase of an accident. We walked down to the park at 11 AM in the morning. On a week day. Ah the bliss ! She was excited as always to be outside the house. Fortunately the Bangalore weather too cooperated by being on its best behavior. It was warm but not hot, and there were clear blue skies. Perfect weather for pictures.

We did a lot of rides, the swings, the slides and the trees. We giggled and played catch and generally had a wonderful time.

Poppin was already in her best mood and having a great day. I decided to up the happiness quotient by suggesting swimming ! She was so darn excited, this girl takes to water like a cliched fish. We've been taking her swimming ever since she was eight months old. So we changed in the locker room and jumped into the toddler pool where poppin splashed and drank (ugh) the chlorinated water to her heart's content.

When I decided that she had enough, I dragged her out of the pool while she longingly looked at it. We then headed to the restaurant/lounge in the club. Here's where the child started to show her true colours. She ran all around the restaurant and entered the lounge/bar area too. And yelled at the top of her voice every time I pulled her back to the seat.

Fortunately, the restaurant was not too crowded and the waiters were indulgent. One of them even did a tinkling of the beer mug with a spoona-la 'Ruk Jaa Oh Dil Deewane' from DDLJ. After she had charmed the pants off most of the people there, and had a bit of curd rice, we walked back home for a well deserved afternoon nap.

I should do this more often. Thank you DMC for an excuse for photo-op !

A version of this post with more photos is up at my blog