There are days when your child is the best in the world but then there are days where nothing in the world can calm them down. They have had a bad day at school or an argument with a friend or it’s just not a good day when they woke up. Your parental instincts want to fix all the worries right away and make it all rainbows and sunshine again but all you get is a tantrum or an argument and a big “NO” for everything that you offer. You are annoyed and so is your child right back at you.
So how do we make sure they get to the other side where there is happiness again. Even I face these kinda days and it’s no cakewalk. Now the solutions mentioned here are tried and tested and work like a charm and you know why??!! Because these solutions were given by my child herself.
During the so called perfect days and happy times, I ended up asking my daughter what things make her happy? What things cheer her up?
That’s how I know these will work their magic and get her up and about soon.
1. An animated movie with popcorn How bad the situation is, depending on that I bring out this big gun. It’s the master of all and it definitely works. Come on, even you would cheer up after a good movie with some crunchy popcorn.
2. Music and Dance Nothing that some peppy music and cheesy steps can’t fix. Our favourites for these are birdie dance, Macarena, Rigga digga dong song, Sid’s shuffle continental drift.
3. Rainbow rice Some rainbow colored rice, pots and pans to pour, spoons to scoop and dolls and animals to play with, and all that stress starts going away.
4. Playdough I usually ask my child to get involved while making the homemade playdough and ask her what colors she would choose. Involving her right from the start does make a difference. Kneading the dough does have a calming effect. Do try!!
5. If you jump in muddy puddles, you must wear your boots Now who wouldn’t want to enjoy it like Peppa pig and it’s the right season for it too. Take advantage of the pouring rains and let them out in the balcony once in a while. You won’t believe how well it works.
6. Bath and toys Eira enjoys her younger brother’s bath toys too. Ducks, boats and some cups for pouring activity. She even takes her swimming glasses along and has a good time. Washes away all the stress.
7. Books and some hot cocoa
You definitely have an idea what is your child’s favourite when it comes to books. Place them in front of your kid alongwith a cup of hot cocoa and let them work their charm. A graphic novel can be a great choice to get those giggles.
Last but not the least. Let them draw, dab, paint and splash some colors onto their blues to get rid of them. Including glitter and stickers work amazingly.
Grumpy days are definitely rough and having some tricks in your pocket would help make a huge difference in fixing your child’s day. The best part is all these can be done right in the comfort of your home where they feel the coziest and safe.
What’s your go-to charm for your child’s grumpy day?
Saving money is one of the most important aspects for adults for having financial security. But do you think this habit can be learned in a day or two? It is an element that needs to be picked up in childhood and rooted in to ensue willingly. We need to empower our kids by teaching them the importance of saving. But how can we achieve that??
Here are 5 easy yet effective five ways to teach your kids the importance of saving.
Help children to set goals through a Piggy Bank or Saving Jars Using a Piggy Bank is a great way to teach your kids the importance of saving. The goal should be to fill it up until there is no room left. I gifted my daughter her first piggy bank when she was less than 2 years old. She didn’t understand the value of it then but knew that whenever she found notes and coins, they had to go into the piggy bank. The money was collected for a full year until Children’s day and then we bought gifts for her from the savings. Starting with these basics, Eira understood that savings are important. Your kid is asking for a specific toy that’s of a higher price, you can help them set goals to make sure to save first and then get the toy. Having multiple jars with pictures of their goals or a gift they want to give their siblings or best friend, will get them excited and keep them on their toes to reach the goal. A saving jar labelled “donation” can imbibe values of contribution towards the needy.
In 2018, when Kerala was in need of relief funds due to floods, I’d explained to Eira that there is a need for donation and that our entire country had risen for the cause. That was a lesson as well as a motivation for her and she also donated a part of her savings through an organization.
Provide monthly allowance Once your kids realize that the allowance they receive from you is a fixed amount, the thought of having an extra income will certainly excite them. Once in a while, allow them to do extra chores and provide an incentive. This will motivate them to be more proactive in helping out at home and even lend a hand to relatives and neighbors. Exercise caution with the frequency of offerings and which activities are rewarded. You certainly do not want them thinking that they will get paid every time they help out in the house. A proper reward system will motivate a hard work ethic.
Teach them budgeting Get your kids involved when you are creating your monthly budget. Explain to them the difference between what is necessary and what isn’t. This will help them develop smart spending habits. Tell them about, how you set your monthly budgets and keep aside savings to run the household. Instead of numbers, you can talk in percentages, if you are not very comfortable sharing the information.
Lead by example A study by the University of Cambridge found that money habits in children are formed by the time they’re 7 years old. Those little eyes are always around us watching and learning. We parents are their first role models and what we do directly has an impact on them. Kids at a young age might not understand how a bank works. Most of the kids think that a bank is a place where everyone gets as much money as they need. So make sure that you’re saving first. Having a piggy bank placed right next to theirs with one of your goals will make things perceivable for them. Maybe a family holiday that you’re planning for or a gift that you want to buy for yourself or a family member. The more the situation is transparent the more they absorb and learn.
Avoid impulse buying “Mom, can I get this toy?” , “Dad, can I get this dress?”. Do not fall for those words especially when it comes to teens. Make sure they know that things cannot be bought in a whiff. Planning your budget, making sure to know how much can be spent in that particular week/month is properly planned. There might be friends who get all the stuff that they demand for right when they ask for it, but you need to make sure your kid understands that contentment starts from the heart. A little can go a long way. The best way to make sure they learn budgeting is to include them in the grocery planning and shopping with you. Moms very well know how much planning goes into keeping their pantry filled within the budget to keep saving yet bringing delicious meals to the table.
Learning responsibility about handling savings After a certain age, you can guide your kid to open a savings account in a bank. This is a great way to learn how to operate a bank account as well. Don’t forget to pitch in a portion into their savings when they start a bank account for their motivation. This step will take money management to the next level. But thats not all. Educating kids about finance management is a process and L&T Mutual Fund can help you in just that in the best way possible.
A Systematic Investment Plan (SIP) can be one of the best possible options for it. A SIP investment can help you save from as little as Rs.500 each month, and it can help you to accumulate a sizable amount over time to reach your goals. A perfect way to invest your child’s savings and explain them how their savings are growing over time.
The SIP Calculator can be used to see the monthly SIP amount they’d need to invest in order to achieve a particular goal in a particular time period.
Every child is different but as parents, you have to guide them and help them start their financial journey so they can become adults who manage their finances well. With time, assistance and support your child will learn the skill of savings at a younger age which will ripple impeccably into their adult life.
Disclaimer: This is for general information only and does not regard to the particular needs of any specific person who may receive this information. L&T Investment Management Limited, the asset management company of L&T Mutual Fund or any of its associates; does not guarantee/indicate any returns/and shall not be held liable for any loss, expenses, charges incurred by the recipient. The recipient should consult their legal, tax, and financial advisors before investing. The recipient of this information should understand that statements made herein regarding future prospects may not be realised or achieved.
Mutual Fund investments are subject to market risks, read all scheme related documents carefully.
Pandemic or not, Pediatrician’s visit cannot be avoided. Changes in weather or a stomach bug can get you there. Even vaccinations need to be given to our infants and kids in due time. They should never be avoided. A little bit of delay might not hurt but your pediatrician’s advice is what you should follow. But how do you make sure that your kids are traveling safely and do not get infected. Going out for us is a job in itself these days. The safety measures, the elbow touch and the disinfection after coming back home. Too many things that a baby won’t understand and has to be made easier on us to handle.
I wana share some safety steps that help me out a lot.
1. Mask up. Mask has become an essential in the current day. You and your older kid can wear masks. They should be instructed in the proper ways of wearing mask and that it should not be removed or touched at all.
2. Sanitizer in your pockets. A sanitizer should always be handy even with your kid. We follow a rule of “No Touch” with my daughter. So when we go out, she goes into that mode, where she does not touch the lift doors, lift buttons, car door or the doors at the doctor’s chambers. These kind of rules can be set up and explained to kids on a regular basis. Sanitize together for them to get a hang of it as they might tend to forget as they do not step out on a regular basis.
3. Wear your baby Baby carriers are the best these days. My son is very fidgety and is a baby who wants to touch and mouth everything he sees and finds so I find it best to wear him in our Aseema carrier from Soulsling India which makes it easier for me to handle him and my daughter at the same time while keeping my hands free for safety purposes.
4. Wear a scarf/feeding cover A scarf or a feeding cover will help you easily cover your baby since little ones cannot wear masks but covering them is equally important.
5. Surface sanitization at the chambers Doctor’s are following the guidelines of disinfecting the surfaces where they place the child for check up but to be extra sure, you can opt to hold the child in your arms during check up and vaccination or take a shawl or a bed runner and lay it before you place your child there. After its done, bring it back home and don’t forget to sanitize that too.
6. Take a shower Make sure you and your baby take a shower after coming back home. One of the most important things and even for the baby, even though you wore him the whole time.
Nowadays, doctor’s advice to get help online unless medication cannot be done at home or is a vaccination. Get a list of general medicine for fever, cough, cold etc from your pediatrician and use them after online consultation.
Stay Home Stay Safe
This blog is a part of #LBWP – Let’s Blog with Pri, Season 2. You can also check out blogs written by my fellow bloggers Sindhu and Arti .
Babies are like a clean slate or an empty book. Upto the age of three they pick up their basic vocabulary and languages for communication. Introducing books to your newborn helps them in a lot of ways. Even if they do not talk, books are a great way of some learning and bonding time. All they are interested in are a lot of colors and shapes and pictures and you reading aloud the story or making up your own is an added bonus.
Books are considered as a great gifting option too. They make wonderful return gifts for birthdays and other occasions as well. While buying or gifting books for babies and toddlers, first thing to keep in mind is that it has to be sturdy. Babies like to explore. They pull and rip, chew and munch on everything they find. So board books are the ones you always want to go for.
I introduced the concept of books and reading to Eric even before he was born. It has made a huge difference in his interest later.
Eric has some favourite reads which have been constant over time and I’m happy to share them based on his interests and recommendations.
1. Black and white/ High contrast books: Don’t you see too many black and white items in the baby’s section at the shopping malls these days? Why do you think so? These black and white or high contrast items and books are bound to have a great impact on newborn especially from 0 – 3 months. They visually stimulate your baby’s vision and brain growth. It doesn’t hurt to continue keeping them included even after that as they will always have your baby’s love being their first books. You can even find playgyms and toys of these colors. Our favourite is the “Baby’s very first black and white book of animals” from Usborne even after . a year. When asked for Eric’s choice, he always picks this one first.
2. Baby faces books: Books with babies in it just click in no time. Babies relate to faces very soon after birth and these kind of books go a long way. Books with real baby faces and having different expressions will make your baby very happy and respond more. You can even make a personalized book of your own baby with different expressions or milestones or a book with all your family members. I got “This Little Baby” from Bookstart publications. It has more of black and white contrast images and I chose this book as it would relate more when my son was 2 months old due to the contrasting pictures. After a point the mirror at the end of the book was a wonderful thing that he discovered. As if he was a part of the book.
3. Cloth books: Kids just love to mouth everything and books are no different. Cloth books are a great way to increase the interest and make sure they do not take a bite. Crinkle cloth books are one of the best and I got “Baby Touch Snuggle Book” from Ladybird for him. The bright colors and crinkling sound is the perfect way for him to play and read at the same time and if Mama has a hard time during his bath, this book makes its way to our bath tub too. Best thing about cloth books are that they are washable.
4. Touch and feel books: These books generate curiosity in babies. They start exploring the use of their senses and how these textures feel different. These books being different than a regular board book makes them one of his favourites’. Eric has the “Baby Touch Flip Flap book” by Ladybird. The bright pictures and colors in this book is loved by babies and toddlers alike.
5. Story books: Books with cute pictures and great stories are a hit with kids who are not babies anymore and are soon gona hit one. They love books with characters which they follow and find along the story as you turn pages and they explore. “The very hungry Caterpillar” by Eric Carle has been a favourite for both my kids. “Goodnight moon” by Margaret Wise Brown is a classic and another of our favourites. The simple yet contrasting images and one liner story makes it a perfect bedtime read for toddlers and beyond.
6. Sound books: These are also a great option but since we have some sound toys, we want to keep books more to reading and listening rather than to musical sounds. “Peppa’s super noisy sound book” is one of the amazing options available.
Its never to early to start reading to kids. The sooner the better as reading is the best gift you can give to your child.
Parenting is one of the most difficult thing on this planet you might say but so is being a kid. Every little thing is new for those tiny brains. New things, new experiences and new tasks everyday. Sharing a thought from their minds or telling what happened with between them and a friend is a task altogether as they do not know how it will be taken as by us. Their parents!!
It is our job to make it easier for them to express their feelings, their emotions and their questions. But how can we do that??? As an overtired parent handling home and work life, you might find yourself complaining and nagging but that won’t work on them. It happened for me too but it got my daughter upset and she just didn’t want to open up to me. There were days when she chose not to do play or do activities when something had gone wrong at school or with a friend while other days she was in a peppy mood. There were some days when her paintings were amazing and somedays everything she did looked like chicken dance. It was a code that needed to be cracked and me expressing my feelings and emotions to her made things easier. She became more confident when she was able to predict my reactions towards her. She started sharing more and knew I would listen. That confidence of her in me gave me tremendous peace of mind and heart and I had a happy child.
I’m sharing some of the phrases that I use with my kids on a daily basis and that made a huge difference. Using them at instances everyday will help alot and you will be able to see a positive change in your kiddos too.
I love you no matter what! Would you not love to hear this over and over again. So do kids! Think of it as a reminder. Especially for little ones. They can’t hear enough of it and will always share the feeling back. There is no better booster than a dose of love from Mama and Papa.
I’m grateful for you. Having you is the best thing that happened to me. Mom and Dad have been blessed. You can even share with them the story of the day they were born with few hidden details of course. They feel special to know that you’re happy to have them. My daughter loves to hear over and over again how Dadda flew back to India from another country and was the most happiest Dad ever to have a baby girl.
I believe in you. When you say this to your kids, it boosts their confidence in you. They believe in you, trust you with their shares and secrets and want to come back to you with their problems. Even the things where they went wrong and everything went upside down.
You make me proud. This motivates kids to do better knowing that their effort is being appreciated. All they need is a pat on their back, a smile or a hug. These gestures shows that you notice their growth and they keep up with their efforts.
You can always come to me. Everyone does mistakes and kids learn through mistakes, trials and errors. If as an adult you’re not left out of it so how can a kid be. But they need to know that they can always come back to you for comfort and that belief is very important.
When in doubt, follow your heart. Teaching them this value is gonna keep them rooted. Always choose the path that your heart believes in and gives you happiness but is also right and just. The best test for this is, “Think about how would you feel if the same was done or said to you and you’ll have the answer”. A thing that I’ve taught my daughter.
You did an awesome job. Appreciation goes a long way. When kids put efforts and proudly share it with you, it is very important to appreciate.
Be yourself. Be you. Be the way you are. You need not be like others. You are just perfect. All these make a huge difference and help them accept the differences they see in them and their friends and that no matter what, you love them.
I forgive you. One of the most important thing to say to kids. Forgiving kids in their mistakes and then letting them know that helps them a lot to come back to you. Of course you should have “The Talk” but there should be no punishments or consequences. You also teach them a value of forgiveness.
I’m sorry. That was my bad. When parents accept their mistakes instead of hiding them, kids learn the habit of admitting. Apologizing to them never goes unnoticed. They understand that they are not the only ones saying sorry every time. They get a chance to bring the value of forgiveness in use. They learn that everyone does mistakes but it is important to accept them, learn from them and forgive them.
You are right. Won’t you love to know that you were right! Hear it! Especially when others were wrong. Kids love to know that they are right too. It makes them proud and makes them feel they are now growing up and able to take the right decisions.
Can you teach me to….. Its a moment for kids to enjoy when adults do not know something or atleast they pretend to. They love to teach their Mom and Dad. Learn how to make a drawing/craft or how to read a difficult word that they have mastered and see them bloom in happiness.
All we have to do is share our feelings with them, support them in their little issues and let them know that we understand. For them their issues are super huge and they need a little attention and a few kind words to make their world easier and tantrum less. Give them the joy of feelings and understanding.
This blog is a part of #LBWP – Let’s Blog with PRI, Season 2. You can also check out blogs written by my fellow bloggers Hansa and Avin.