Review-Pee Safe and Jungle Magic

I received a Jungle Magic Hand Sanitizer for kids and PeeSafe Toilet Seat Sanitizer from SafetyKart.com. Thanks to Swapna and Pratibha for the two very useful products.

PeeSafe Toilet Seat Sanitizer

My daughter had to go on a school trip with one-night stay in a hotel. Though the school ensured it was a good hotel with high standards of hygiene I was still worried. Using the hotel toilets was an issue. However, a great product Pee safe Toilet Seat Sanitizer came to my rescue. I tried it at home and was impressed. I packed this small bottle with my daughter’s travel things and instructed her on its use. She found it very convenient.

Pee safe Toilet Seat Sanitizer is a disinfectant that can be used for toilet seats; door handles and flush knobs to prevent bacterial and viral infections. The company claims that it offers 99.99% sanitization from toilet borne diseases in just 5 seconds by eliminating germs like Staphylococcus aureus, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and E. coli.

The pros
•    Convenient to use
•    Travel friendly
•    Kills 99.99% germs on the sprayed surfaces
•    Alcohol free
•    Dries quickly without ant residue
•    Nice fragrance
•    Environment friendly

The Cons
I found no disadvantages. It is economically priced at Rs 120 per bottle.

Jungle Magic kid’s Sanitizer

This product also came at a perfect time for my daughter to take it with her.
The little bottle of Jungle Magic kid’s sanitizer is designed well to attract kids. The sanitizer feels like regular sanitizer without any special fragrance, but the product comes from Piramal Healthcare and promises to be kid friendly. It can be used by kids above three years of age for hand hygiene and sanitation. Some regular sanitizers are profited for children. Jungle Magic Kid’s sanitizer protects children from germs and infection. I tried it at home and feel it is good for children, especially outdoors or while travelling. I was happy to that this is kid-friendly.

Price Rs 60 per bottle

Do I recommend these products? Yes

Both these products are available online at http://www.safetykart.com

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Dear Daughter

Birds

Dear Daughter,

It is strange to observe how time flies! It seemed just like that yesterday you came into our life as a helpless sweet little bundle. However, eleven years have walked through the curtain of time, and I can hardly believe. This year as you celebrate your eleventh birthday, I decided to write this letter. We can read it together when you turn twenty one!

I have tried to record many enchanting moments through all these years. Whenever I visit my blog, I notice this drawing that adorns the blog. You were two years when you created this. I smile as it transports me to those beautiful days when you danced as shimmering light of dawn and slept like an angel (though only for few minutes).
Today you stand tall, confident, happy and enthusiastic. Your girlhood and adolescence seem to compete with each other. As I watch you grow up, I feel proud and scared at the same time. Dear daughter, the world today is evil and the mother in me constantly worries about your safety.

Your energy sometimes frustrates me dear daughter; I want you to calm down. Slow your pace to experience life, see the grace around you and feel it. Rushing through our days and through life has become our mantra. We hardly have any time to ‘live’ life in the real sense.

Nest

The Nest

Remember when we created our nature journal last year we discovered such lovely things near us. We found that tiny nest on the top of the park just next to our terrace and small babies waiting for their mother to come. We observed a woodpecker visiting that leafless tree. Remember how we used to wait for the bird (our Woody) to visit. However, that tree was cut down, and we lost our Woody forever. Yes, life changes and we need to accept the change as only change is constant. These moments, would become an anchor later in life when you feel lonely. So try to notice these little things, experience the exquisite as you walk through life. Though happiness cannot be taught, it’s an art that needs to be practiced. Try to notice the perfect ‘imperfections’ of apparently mundane days where life dwells and joy resides.

I am not asking you to become slow. You should run at times to feel the air in your face and jump and shout, but not all the time. Dance in the rain let the droplets soak you. Nature is very healing and rainy afternoons and paper boats are so enjoyable. Dear daughter, let life unfold like a flower one day at a time.

Believe in yourself while taking your decisions. Don’t be afraid to follow your passions that one-day would lead to your dreams. Let people say anything don’t look for acceptance from the world, but accept yourself as you are. See your own beauty and don’t compare. Beauty is the way to speak with compassion, with respect, with concern. Beautiful means to have the ability to make another feel warm at heart in your presence, beauty is those stars in your eyes. You have extremely expressive eyes, look after them lovingly.

When I scold you for eating too many chocolates sweets and junk food, you are frustrated. However, it is for your health. The mother in me wants the best for you. Treasure your health dear nothing else will ever matter.
And yes about those hurts, yes you will face some bitter, harsh truths; sometimes people will be mean and rude. Life will look very unfair, but my dear accept it with all humility and surrender as grass does in the midst of a storm. It’s alright to cry sometimes and fearlessly, give way to tears; you will feel healed after a good cry.

Lastly I have not been able to spend much time with you as much as I want to due to other responsibilities, but let’s make a pact; we will try to catch more time together on weekends when we cook, create, read or just lie in the bed and listen to the night sounds.

Lovingly

Maa

Magical Kingdom

Those were the days touched by magic. Everything was enchanting, wonderful and waiting to be discovered. Those days everything seemed attainable in land of infinite possibilities.  When the twin sisters; astonishment and wonder held my hand. The days jumped happily, and nights provided wings to visit the dreamland of fantasies.

 When running happily everywhere, competing with the wind was the norm.  The mud fascinated, and clay took any shape in tiny hands. When clouds looked like giraffes, and the wind whispered magic spells.

A square box which was guarded fiercely, which contained treasure of feathers, pebbles, sea shells, ribbons and paper cuttings. Many pleasurable hours got immersed in this treasure.

Seasons were accepted with great glee without any complaints. Each season had ample and varied temptations.

Red, orange and yellow kites would allure in the windy months. The sight of kites soaring high in the sky is mesmerizing. Even today when I watch the kites a smile touches my lips delicately.

The tangy summers were spent in hours of reading books in the afternoons and drinking chilled fresh lime. Indian summer is like a mango all sweet and sour. Raw mangoes are eaten as a salad with a bit of salt. The variety of mangoes we get is huge. There is a new flavor to look for every week. Freshly pickled mangoes with rice would add tanginess to the lunch.

 Paper boats floated in the rains. I loved the rainy days when schools declared holidays. Those days nothing mattered except discovering the universe, at least a part of it.

I don’t exactly remember when things changed. The colourful world became black and white and gray. Things and objects lost their ability to fascinate me. Life was more of routine with clock stress creating strife. The seasons brought additional chores. I started walking instead of running and became skeptical. I accepted life out of acceptance, and the wonder vanished. Then….

The magical Kingdom visited me again with my daughter arrived. Today, I get a glimpse to this wonderland holding her hand. I am touched to notice the dancing stars in her eyes when runs after the crimson butterfly. A ray of sun from the window makes her eyes huge with wonder. A little bird, a bunch of small puppies are worth all the time. She is my teacher in this innocent world.

The pictures are from the net.

Dearest Sun

Dearest Sun,

How have you been through all these ages?  Walking to the bus stop to drop my daughter to school, I meet you almost every day. For last two days you were not there as the sky was overcast.

Today, looking at the reddish tinge on the Eastern horizon, I smiled. It looked like a child had spilled some golden glitter mixed with crimson on a blue canvas. My daughter identified about six the shades of red.

We are blessed with sunshine for almost 300 days, and take you for granted. We hardly welcome you. We await your arrival only in the winters when the temperature drop and the day drapes itself in a gray coat.

However, we cannot live or exist without you. Who are you? Why do you burn always dear Sun? Don’t you get tired?

If you did not burn there would be no life on Earth. There will be no dance of life on Earth.  I want to tell you that I admire your tenacity, uncomplaining attitude and sense of duty.

I love the way your golden fingers touch the Earth to make it bloom. It is an everlasting love affair which creates life.

From today, we will greet you every morning with a smile and say thank you when the purple twilight dances in the West. I will acknowledge your presence in every blade of grass, flower or tree I observe.  I will see you in rivers, seas and oceans. When I eat, I will notice the sunshine in every crumb.

And at night we will send a little prayer to you on the other side of the globe. God bless you dear Sun, and fulfil all your wishes!

 

November Tales

November Tales

 The cool winds of November have started embracing us. Schools are ready for the winters and the uniforms have changed.

It is amazing to watch the sunlight changing direction to enter the dining room. We are blessed with a house which gets ample sunlight in the winters which recedes after the winter scholastic to remain just outside. Every year we watch it with great interest. Many delightful hours are spent in the afternoon sun on the terrace singing, talking, writing reading and studying.

Yesterday, I took out the winter clothing. As I kept everything on the bed to sort out, my daughter was fascinated to see all her stuff.

This year she has grown taller and many sweaters would have to be discarded. Observing the heap I found many moments of certain days entangled in the soft woollens. Here was a lovely pink cardigan with white beads she often wore for parties consecutively for three years.

A bunch of winter caps sit on the edge of the bed as if trying to run away. She picked the red one to try, which was a tight fit. She unhappily puts it. away in the discarded heap. The yellow cap with a Mickey Mouse was fine but had a big brown stain.

“Mama the stain did not go away even after a year! “

I smile and look at the cap which had accompanied us on many Sunday trips to so many places. In fact, the image of her small head bobbing in this favourite yellow cap is so etched in my mind that I am sure I will remember it even when she is grown up.

The bed is covered with a melange of colours and soft fabrics. Dried neem leaves fall off from folds. There are silks, a light pink khadi silk one which was a gift from a friend from college looks beautiful! I remember the first time I wore this sari for a college function. We were not well versed in the art of draping a sari in those days, and I had put many pins to add to the ‘safety’. Today even without one I manage effortlessly.

How you change with times is an amazing realisation. We all journey unknowingly through the train of time which passes through tunnels, meadows valleys…and we are on the move literally and figuratively as well.

I glanced at my daughter; she was busy trying out a jacket which had outgrown her.

“Mama I am tall and grown up. I cannot fit into this anymore” she happily chirped. A child is always in a hurry to grow up.

A smile touches my lips as I recognize an ephemeral moment fluttering around on invisible wings of mindfulness. Days walk and years fly.  I will remember this moment captured exactly as it is in my heart. Happy to have the awareness of conscious mindfulness to recognize these moments when they visit.

Whoever said life transformation is a big deal? Not at all! It is hidden in these profound moments where ever they find us. By being receptive and open to welcome these moments into our life for all of these will make their way to the treasure trove of memories. It is not the big adventures that make life worth but some precious moments of serene joy of everyday life. The day I discovered this simply profound truth, life became a series of joyous adventure.

There are days when I am too busy with work and playing house house. There are days when I encounter people with extreme negativity. On some when I just want to sit and do nothing but a million tasks are calling me. At such time I take a deep breath and say ‘This is what is’. I put a ten-minute alarm on the mobile to do just the thing at hand. So if am chopping an onion it gets all my attention, if I am sorting papers my mind is the paper. If I am writing I just write until the alarm.

At the end of the day there are a lot many things, which loom around on the orbit of urgency like planets gone wild, I hear all the family members who jostle for my attention but within this chaos, there is calmness. I recall that story, which has 200 words, or the neat drawer, the dal tadka I made for the evening dinner, those two pages the book I managed to read, the small Chrysanthemum bud which was dancing in the afternoon sun. I know I have achieved a lot with a reason to smile happily, because I just count what really needs to be counted and don’t feel the need for accounting.

 

 

 

Motherhood Zen

The last few years have changed me in many ways than I can comprehend. My life can be clearly demarcated by a line of motherhood. It has transformed me totally. And how did it happen?

The change did not take place in a day. It was quite a journey and a deeply spiritual one! Motherhood is an experience which makes you smile, cry, laugh, scream and at times frustrates and by making you feel like giving up. Honestly, there are moments when you yearn for a carefree life, but only for a second.  A small hand, a little flick of the hair, strange crooked smiles, some toys lying around are enough to make your heart melt. You look around fondly while keeping away the soft toys to bring in semblance of order at home.

There are sleepless nights, undone jobs and piles of unwashed clothes. Some days have no routine and with no time even to think.   You learn to take one day at a time and later one moment at time.    This is ‘living in the moment’. When I observe my daughter engrossed in some activity, I am amazed! She is so focused.  It is a moment when time ceases to be. We need to practice this giving all to the moment which ‘is’.

On Saturday nights after dinner, we sit together and try to create or draw something.    a child by letting her take up the mantle of an elder.     Her drawing hand is forceful and steady. She is gifted and has a way with shapes. At three years she had started drawing well and clear shapes with ease.

We see the world with biased eyes. The mental blocks do not allow us to glimpse beyond the mundane. A child makes you see extraordinary possibilities in all phenomenons. A child brings in fresh perspective.  This is known as the ‘beginners mind’ in Buddhist terminology. Cultivating a beginners mind can be easily learnt from a child.

My daughter is my Zen teacher. She has made me realize that patience is just not waiting for things to happen, but it is also about accepting the transient nature of anything. The ever changing life and its conditions make every phase momentary. Even if we do not realize, on the subatomic level all things are changing every moment.

Looking at her as she concentrates to draw a leaf or something else I try to be in the moment totally. Soon it will vanish. In few years, my baby will fly away from my nest. These moments will be our treasure.  At that time perhaps sitting away from each other, we will think of the happy times where we shared a smile, an idea or some yellow paint on our hands. Today I might not realize the preciousness of this very moment.

Later an untidy house and pending jobs will have no significance.  What matters are these little scenes the stars in her eyes, the scream of joy, that look of anticipation, sticky glue on our fingers and the table covered with scraps of paper.

So when she wants to have a biscuit after hurriedly washing of the glue, I let her. She offers me and puts in my mouth. We laugh! A moment to cherish is born!

I completely agree with Diane Loomans

“If I had my child to raise all over again, I’d build self-esteem first, and the house later. I’d finger-paint more, and point the finger less. I would do less correcting and more connecting. I’d take my eyes off my watch, and watch with my eyes. I’d take more hikes and fly more kites. I’d stop playing serious, and seriously play. I would run through more fields and gaze at more stars. I’d do more hugging and less tugging.”

Nurturing Creativity

Creating something with your hand has its pleasures. I always wanted to share these creative spaces with my child. From August, we decided that once a week we will make or create some art of craft together. Inspiration struck from a very unusual object. My daughter had just finished a tin of Pediasure. As I was about to throw it away I saw some potential in that shape, it could be made into a nice pen/pencil holder. Pens and pencils have an uncanny ability to walk anywhere in our house and often sleep on our bed. This would help me kill two birds I thought. The pens and pencils would go to their home to rest for the night.

 

 

The Tin

One rainy morning we took out the box of assorted craft materials. This box stores sequins, ribbons, buttons in all shapes and size, bits of colour paper, bindis, threads, wool and other stuff.

We took a white sheet and made some designs. It was nice to see my daughter sitting with slightly bent head and concentrating on getting the design right. As she is a perfectionist, there were moments of angry tantrums. However, we finally managed to complete it. With some glue, it was neatly pasted on the tin.

Ribbons and glitter made the design shine. Here was a lovely piece.

 

 

Smart Holder

Another session saw us with few white sheets some crayons and glue. This was something I had learned as a child. On many occasions, I had successfully crafted this basket of flowers, which looked lovely. Practice had made me perfect!

You will need.

A4 size sheets (we managed to use two, economy and conservation)

Crayons

Pencil and an eraser

Glue

Fold the paper and draw a basket and cut. You will have two sides of the basket. Similarly draw handles and cut.  Try to have elongated handles so that the flowers fit in properly.

Then draw few flowers in different shapes and colour. Cut strips and colour them green to make the stem. With some scraps of paper and cut strips add colour. Then cut them into 1 or 2 inch strips.

 

Shapes at Glance

Stick the strips to flowers. The small strips on the front of the basket will make it look like a basket. Apply glue to the basket on the three sides to make the basket. Stick the handle and arrange the flowers by adjusting the stems. A colourful basket is ready.

 

Basket of Blooms

 

By the time we finished it was about 11.30 at night. And yes we had a lovely time.