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Posted in Inspiring stories

“I have become used to working through playdates”: Sunanda Kashyap, Founder, Crazymee

Striking work-life balance is never easy especially when you are a mother. And what happens when you are entrepreneur too? You end up learning the art of working through your child’s play dates and meal times! Meet one such super mom, Sunanda Kashyap, founder of Crazymee 

Continue reading ““I have become used to working through playdates”: Sunanda Kashyap, Founder, Crazymee”

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Posted in Reviews

Product Review: Skin Care Products from Satliva

Taking extra care of one’s skin and hair is probably the last thing on a new momma’s list of things to do. Till a few weeks ago, I barely had the energy to brush my teeth before putting the little one to sleep let alone follow a proper night skincare routine!

So when I got the package from Satliva, I wasn’t sure how much I was going to be able to use the products: a face and body oil, face cream, lip balm, and handmade soap (which I used sooner because thankfully I do manage to get time to bathe!). But the excitement of trying out something new and the fragrance of these natural products got me to try them out. Below is the detailed review of Satliva products I have been using for some days now: Continue reading “Product Review: Skin Care Products from Satliva”

Posted in Motherhood

5 Facts About Baby Wipes You Must Know

Can you imagine your life as a parent without wipes? From bottom cleaning to wiping hands and surfaces, wet wipes are a blessing. But long before the concept of baby wipes came in, people used cloth scraps or cloth wipes that were washed and re-used. Imagine the ordeal on the go! It was not until 1950s that disposable wipes were introduced for hands and other clean ups. What’s more, baby wipes were introduced even later in the 1980s.

Phew! Thankfully, we have baby wipes from reliable brands available today. However, no matter which brand of wipes you choose for your baby, there are a few things to be kept in mind about the wipes. Take a look at some of the facts about baby wipes.

  1. Diaper Rash May Require You To Change The Wipes

Your first instinct when your baby gets a diaper rash might be to change the diaper brand. However, you should first consider changing the wipes you’re using. The skin around your baby’s diaper area is repeatedly exposed to wetness, poop, and urine. Since the skin in this area has more folds and creases than other area, it makes it difficult to clean it thoroughly.

As mentioned in the posts earlier, I say this through my personal experience with my little one’s rash. My baby would scream and howl everything I tried cleaning up with the wipes I was using. Unhappy with the wipes I was using, I switched to cotton and water, which worked miraculously. But that was quite inconvenient so I looked for an alternative and found the perfect substitute in Mother Sparsh, India’s Ist water based wet wipes.

  1. The Skin is Much More Sensitive

An important point we need to remember is that the absorption rate of skin in the delicate regions of baby’s body is significantly higher than in other parts of the body such as the forearm. So, the concentration of chemicals in products used in those parts of the body may need to be lower. A lot of baby wipes available in the market have up to 80% polyester which is harmful for the baby. When buying wet wipes for your baby, look for ones that have no polyester content. I checked Mother Sparsh water-based wipes through a flame test and found that the wipes are actually as good as cotton and water.

3. Wet Wipes Are Safe to Use for Premature Babies

A lot of my friends have expressed their apprehension for using wet wipes for premature babies. The concern is misplaced. A study conducted to find out whether they were safe for all babies found that “wipes were safe for use with subgroups such as premature babies”. It is, in fact, recommended that premature babies should not be bathed in their premature state to avoid the risk of unnecessary distress. The results of the study showed the wipes were well tolerated by premature babies and even indicated some beneficial skin effects.

4. Disposable baby wipes Complement Healthy Skin pH
Now, you might wonder how wipes can have beneficial effects on skin. Note here, that rash development is commonly attributed to increase of skin pH following exposure to urine and feces. Actually, the babies have a natural pH balance which tends to increase with dirty diapers. Good wipes, like Mother Sparsh, help restore the skin’s natural pH balance.

5. Make Sure the Wipes Don’t Cause Environmental damage

Majority of wet wipes in the market aren’t biodegradable. This means they can cause serious drainage problems if flushed down the toilet. As a matter of fact, wet wipes were called “the biggest villain of 2015” by well known international newspaper after it was discovered wet wipes contribute to giant fat-bergs in the sewage system. Good brands, such as Mother Sparsh, take care of this as well. Mother Sparsh is as good as cotton and water, so no environmental damage!
Whichever brand you choose, pay close attention to the ingredients in the brand you buy. Opt to purchase wipes that contain a minimum number of preservatives and keep a check on how your baby’s skin reacts to these wipes. My trust is on Mother Sparsh (website link) water based wipes after being sure of its effect on my baby’s skin and conducting a test myself. I encourage you to do the same. You can buy the wipes from here

Posted in Motherhood

Mother Sparsh Water Wipes Ace the Flame Test

How many of you liked Chemistry in school? Hit ‘Like’ if you loved the subject (yeah, yeah that’s my way of getting more likes;)) While I wasn’t a fan of the theoretical part, I loved the days when we had practical. Going into that lab with the white coat on, I used to feel thrilled conducting different experiments.

One experiment I recall distinctly is the flame test. Remember?  Used for identification of certain metals, the flame test is used for identification of certain unknown elements. It is based on the characteristic color the salt turns the flame of a Bunsen burner.

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Thanks to Mother Sparsh, I got to relive those lab moments sans all the technicalities and complexities, of course. And it did not require a Bunsen burner. All it took was a candle, matchstick, and two wipes: one of Mother Sparsh brand and one of any other brand. The idea was to see the difference between the two as claimed by the brand being as good as cotton and water.

Mother Sparsh wipes claim to be skin friendly wipes made from 100% plant-based fabric. This makes them purely safe not just for your little but for the environment also. There is no polyester added to these wipes so can easily decompose and keep environment pollution-free.

Note here, there’s no polyester used as per the brand. So, is it true? Here’s what I did to check that:

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  1. I took Mother Sparsh baby wipe and held it above the flame.
  2. The wipe did not catch fire very easily and there was no foul smell. This is because it is made up of 98% water. The residue turned to soot immediately.
  3. I then tried the same test with another brand’s wipes. Though that also did not catch fire immediately, it did have a pungent smell. The residue was the same as you’d get if you burn something with high plastic content.

Seeing is believing, isn’t it? The test is a proof that Mother Sparsh Baby Wipes are true to its claim of being as good as cotton and water. The smell it yields is the most important factor in determining the contents. If the baby wipe you’re using, yields plastic-like smell, it is indicative of high polyester content, which can be harmful for your baby’s skin. If it smells like burning cloth or paper, like in this case, it is much safer to use.

You can order these Mother Sparsh Baby Water wipes on Amazon . Also do visit their website   for a detailed description about the product along with various consumer review.

Posted in Motherhood

Using Law of Attraction for the Betterment of Your Kids

Do you believe in The Law of Attraction? Dr. Karishma Ahuja, a renowned Law of Attraction trainer, hypnotherapist & Metaphysical Counsellor in India believes in using the power of mind to make lives better. Here she talks about how parents can use Law of Attraction to make their kids’ life better. 

 

The Law of Attraction is a powerful universal energy bringing you more of whatever it is that is going on within you, this includes your thoughts, beliefs and feelings. If we understand how this ‘law’ works we can use it for great success and fulfillment in our families, jobs and careers.

As parents, the first thing you need to understand is that ‘example’ is not the best way, it is in fact the only way to teach your children. So in order to bring about any positive change in your children, you have to yourself commit to using these principles in your life religiously.

Here are 5 ways parents can use the Law of Attraction to positively influence their children and promote the well being of the family.

1. Meditate together: As the Dalai Lama said, If every child was taught to meditate, we would not have any wars in the world. Sit in silence daily as a family. Golden rule is if your child is 4 years, meditate together for 4 minutes, if he is 5 years, meditate for 5 minutes and so on daily. Breathe deeply and fully. This is a great way to energize your body and cleanse your Aura. Ask children if they observed any negative thoughts or feelings while sitting in silence. Encourage them to speak about it and teach them the importance of forgiving everybody and everything.

2. Be happy: In order to raise a successful kid, first ensure that He or she is a Joyful kid. The Law of Attraction always emphasizes on ‘feeling good’ as the essential key to boosting your ability to Attract and Manifest what you desire. The home should always be a happy place. Challenges will come, it is important ,however, for parents to remain calm and always expect good things to happen to them. This is a winning mindset and when they observe parents always holding on to their faith and hoping for the best, children will begin to develop this mindset too. The family can together repeat, “Only good happens to us.”

3. Use positive words: Your words should be such that they inspire and encourage, not hurt and humiliate. Remember, your intentions are no good if your children feel unwanted and rejected. Every word you speak carries energy. Positive words will create positive thoughts, which in turn create positive vibrations. Law of Attraction says, You can only Manifest your desires if you are in a positive vibration. So make sure you speak to each other at home with love and respect. As you do this, you will see your children doing the same and growing up to be confident, intelligent adults who can think clearly and stay focused.   

4. Appreciation tool: According to the Law of Attraction, the more you observe what’s working for you, the more you begin to draw all things good and desirable. Spend 5 minutes daily at night with your children talking about what went right in the day. Make it fun and light.

Encourage each other to talk about the best thing that happened in the day. This can actually help us to break away from the victim mentality and do away with the tendency to blame and find faults.

This exercise will help the family develop an attitude of Appreciation, an essential key to powerful Manifestation.

5. Power of ‘I CAN’: The Law of Attraction says, If you really want to Achieve something, you got to believe that You can. Teach children the importance of believing they are powerful creators. Encourage them to dream big. As a family, together practice speaking the language of I CAN. Whenever someone wishes to do something, let them mentally and verbally repeat, I CAN DO IT. When done regularly, this exercise will raise their vibration and remove thoughts of self doubt and fear.

 

 

 

About the author of this article:

Karishma Ahuja

 Karishma has profound expertise in Ho’oponopono (a Hawaiin word which means to correct and erase), which is a problem solving technique which teaches us to stop blaming, instead take responsibility for everything we are experiencing in life by connecting it with our subconscious mind.

Posted in Motherhood

13 Things You Learn in the First Year of Becoming a Mother

No one tells you how hard it is going to be. Honestly, even if they do, you don’t realize it until you experience it yourself. This June when we celebrated her birthday, I got this phrase from almost everyone: time flies. “Huh, what do you know!,” I said to myself each time I read or heard that line.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I am not saying it was a painfully slow year. But fly it didn’t.

It’s not that I’ve been crying in my bathroom or sobbing myself to sleep through the year. But there are days. While several things come naturally to you when the baby comes out of you, most of the others are things you wish someone warned you about before so you could have prepared yourself better.

Now, I don’t know if you can really be prepared for things but one gets strength in knowing that you are not alone. My 12 months as a mother passed with some lessons, some tears, and many gleefully happy moments. Several times, I wondered if I am the only one feeling like how I’m feeling. Of course, everyone’s journey is different. May be it was easier for some and far tougher for others. With this post, I am reaching out to the new ones telling them what the first year is like, and asking the old one whether they felt the same?

  1. First Three Months are the Toughest
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1-month-old Prisha

The first month as a mother can make you numb. It feels like watching a movie with too many characters, too many sub-plots, and with just too many dialogues to comprehend what’s happening. And to top it all, the movie is in a language you have no clue about! The second month onwards you begin to process things and by the end of third month you finally begin to make sense of what’s happening in front of you.

These are also the months when your baby can be colicky. Mine was. I still remember those long nights with her wailing throughout and us helplessly trying to pacify her.

  1. It Might Hit You a Little Late That Your Life Has Changed

The nine months should have ideally prepared me for it. Plus, I was on bed rest for the entire third trimester. So my life had already changed. But the transformation the baby brings in your life is something absolutely different. And I’m not talking about it changing in the not-being-able-to-meet-friends kind of way.

Every decision, no matter how small or big, you have to take requires a change of perspective. This dons on you slowly. You happily change the décor of the room. Your shopping cart is full of items not for yourself but for your munchkin. You get a fabulous work opportunity for but can’t take it because you’re not in the frame of mind just yet. And all of this is happening when the world is moving at its usual pace. Your extended family is meeting for get-togethers like before. Your friends are partying and travelling the world. Excellent movies are releasing… It’s business as usual everywhere, may be even better than before. But not in your life. Your life has changed. Bit by bit, you accept the change… sometimes happily and sometimes with a frown on your face.

  1. About Breastfeeding…

IMG_20170825_175138You know it already that there is no substitute for breastfeeding but you do not realize a lot of facts about it until you have a baby in your arms. And you might not be able to exclusively breastfeed no matter how much you want to. I suffered from depression after my doctor told me that I would have to top feed because I wasn’t lactating enough and my baby was going hungry. I did all I could to increase the supply (granules, green dal, breast pumping, and every other possible remedy there was) while I gave her formula milk. I got very little supply and that too just for three months. My doctor then counseled me and told me of cases wherein some mothers did not get even a drop of milk to feed their babies. That is a reality. It made things worse for me when well-meaning friends said I should try harder. If you are in the same situation, remember it does not matter as long as your baby is healthy and happy. Don’t traumatize yourself over it; it’s not your fault.

4. You Realize How Scary a Sneeze Can be

Ever been scared of a sneeze before? I’m not sure if there is a word to describe the phobia of hearing someone sneeze. But if you are new mom, you must have or will experience the phobia. Anyone who denies having it in the initial few months of becoming a mom for the first time is a liar! (Okay, or may be just stronger than the rest of us!)

The first time Prisha caught a slight cold, I called up my mother in a state of panic. She was only three months then. I remember being mad at my mom because she was away somewhere and couldn’t come home immediately. She would have been as helpless as I was then and going to the doctor was the only thing we could have done. But the panic was real! Mom pacified me and told me of some home remedies to help Prisha, and came home the next morning (worried more about me perhaps!)

5. The world is divided into three kinds of people…

After you have a baby in your arms, you start dividing the world around you into three kinds of people:

i) who adore your baby and would do anything to be with her at any given time

(ii) who say they love your baby a lot, but are never available if you need help

(iii) those you just comment on how much you have changed after your baby

The only people falling in the first category will be your baby’s grandparents and perhaps your siblings, and if you’re really lucky then your closes friend(s). The extended family and some friends fall in the second category.

The people in the third category are the ones you need to put in the ‘archive’ folder of your life. They can be there somewhere just not anywhere in the distance of your naked eye. You will be surprised how many of your close ones you will end up putting in this category within the first year!

6. You Learn to Live with the Mess

I am not a very organized person per se. I haven’t been a sucker for keeping things in perfect order around me. So, perhaps that is why I am okay with dealing with the fact that you will eventually learn to live with the mess around. The usual mess with the toys and stuff can be taken care of. But the items in the house just keep on increasing. Car seat, high chair, mini swing, stock of diapers packs, boxes and boxes of toys (the amount of toys one can gather for an infant is amazing!), cot – these are some of the essential things always lying around the house (the fact that we do not have a store room just makes it worse). That does get messy. I haven’t even mentioned the condition of my wardrobe, dresser, the table etc. You either clean and organize everything every day or learn to live with the mess!

7. Sleep When the Baby Sleeps….is Irish bull

This is the advice that will come to you from every single person around you. And you wonder okay, I’d sleep when she sleeps and I’ll cook and clean when the baby cooks and cleans? In the first year, you realize that all these are well-meaning people and need to be forgiven. But this rarely happens. Forget all the house chores, even if you want to sleep you are unable to most of the times. And on one of the lucky days when you fall asleep just when your baby is sleeping peacefully, someone will ring the doorbell after exactly 3 minutes of sleeping. True story.

8. Definition of Vacation will Change:

travelling with baby
Read about our first trip with our baby

Honestly, visit to a mall now feels like vacation: there’s planning, packing, travelling (okay commuting), clicking pictures (because you want to click a picture of your baby anywhere and everywhere). The joke about how vacation feels like work, and work feels like a vacation after you have a baby, is on point.

9. Shit Happens

…literally, right when you are about to step out after getting late already. Worse, the baby will poop just when you are about to get out of the car. And definitely when you have just changed the diaper. You learn to not let it get better of you. (Shi)It happens.

10. Good Friends Become Your Oxygen

 I don’t know how I could have survived the first year without the support of my girl pals. Friends who had become mothers recently offered tremendous guidance whenever I needed it. I would bother them on whatsapp or call even at odd hours, and I would get a reply I was looking for. Always. These are new moms as well as single friends I am talking about. You need a solid set of friends to cheer you up or just listen to you.  You need them when you’re drowning in a sea of emotions (mainly because of the hormones) 

  1. You will become the mother you thought you won’t be…

Remember the time your friend who just became a mother couldn’t stop talking about her baby? And you thought you’d never be that person. Well… you will probably end up starting a blog dedicated to your baby J You will be showing off your baby’s latest knowledge procurement: “Baby, where’s your head? What comes after A?” You would want to tell the world that your baby can identify her nose.

  1. The Art of Multitasking & Forgetting

motherhood humourThe art of multitasking comes complimentary with becoming a mother. You realize now how your mom could cook for everyone, help you with your homework, clean up entire house, and still have time to read her book. You learn to multitask because there is no other way. You will be surprised to know how much your mind can process and remember: doctor’s appointment, baby’s medicines, food timings, your work deadlines. But, you’re only human, right? So you’d become forgetful too. You will be mentally replying to a lot of messages on WhatsApp but realize later you actually forgot to (happens too much with me). You will put the clothes in washing but forget to hang them out. You will tell your friend you will call back in 10 minutes (but you never will not because you don’t want to but because you got too busy adoring your little bunny ;))

  1. Wanting “Me Time” is Not Being Selfish

I struggled with it initially, feeling guilty about wanting some time alone. But then realized that you can’t draw from an empty well. You need to fill it. From having a quiet time to read a book, watching Netflix, meeting a friend, to enjoying a spa session – any kind of self-care is important to keep your system going.

Do you relate to any of these? What are the things you learnt about motherhood in the first year? 

Posted in Motherhood

Lose Pregnancy Weight the Healthy Way

It has been over a year, and I am still struggling with my weight issues. I have managed to reduce a little but there is a long road ahead. I’m revisiting the tips shared by celebrity fitness expert Luke Coutinho (MD Alternative Medicine & Founder Pure Nutrition) on healthy ways to lose pregnancy weight.

Throughout the 9-month journey of pregnancy, a mother goes through a lot of physical and psychological changes and its normal for her to face fears, struggles and issues regarding regaining her health post-partum. 

 

The pressures from society to look good, the fear of looking unattractive to her spouse, the urge to fit into those jeans and her own insecurities arise well before she conceives or learns that she’s pregnant, so imagine the amount of stress that builds over the span of 9 months.  Continue reading “Lose Pregnancy Weight the Healthy Way”

Posted in Featured Articles

8 Mess Free Game Activities For Kids’ Birthday Party

Organizing a party at home can be chaotic except when you have creative ideas to keep the little ones busy with non-messy games.

Planning your kid’s birthday party is no child’s play; especially during summers when party-at-the-park is not an option. You need to put on your creative hat and think of ideas that do not require too much running around. Here are some cool ideas to engage kids at the party sans any clutter. Continue reading “8 Mess Free Game Activities For Kids’ Birthday Party”

Posted in Reviews

Review: Mother Sparsh Baby Water Wipes

Has you baby had a bad diaper rash? If yes, then you truly understand the agony that comes with it. I was super ecstatic all this while about my baby not getting any rash (I think I even gave myself a pat on the back!). But that was until she got a loose stomach, and that was just a week before we were to travel for our first ever long vacation with her.

The rash got really nasty within a couple of days. Coconut oil, Desitin, and Clocip powder came to the rescue and did what they do the best. But still there was one irritant: the wipes. I can’t forget how she used to scream whenever I tried cleaning her up with those wipes. It was a well-known and popular brand which seemed perfect until now. The cooling and soapy effect it has is great but not when the monstrous rashes appear.

So we switched to using wet cotton for a bit. It did not irritate her skin because well, it was just cotton and water. But was quite inconvenient for me to rush for a mug of water and cotton every time.

And then I came across an equivalent of soft cotton and water: Mother Sparsh Baby Water Wipes! In fact, the brand approached me for a review. It couldn’t have come at a better time.

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Here are the reasons why I recommend these wipes over others for your precious baby:

  1. Water Based: What makes it different from the other brands is the fact that these are 98% water based wipes.  When you use Mother Sparsh Baby Water Wipes, you will notice that other wipes have too much of the moisturizing content vis-a-vis these wipes. The other brand’s wipes caused much irritation to my baby when she had those nasty rashes which caused me to switch to cotton and water. These seem to be rectangle version of cotton and water as they have the same effect because of high water percentage. (I just checked after writing the post, that this is what the brand actually claims. I can vouch for the fact that it is 100 % genuine in claiming so!)

2. Soothing Aroma: I just love the fragrance these wipes have!

3. Prevents Diaper Rash: Free from any chemicals, the wipes pack in the goodness of Aloe Vera and vitamin D. The brand has been clinically tested for preventing rashes, redness and allergy. In my case, it worked to even heal my daughter’s rashes.

4. Bio Degradable: Mother Sparsh wipes are 100% bio-degradable. Unlike other wipes which are artificial polyester blend, these are made from natural plant fabric.

The brand is relatively new in the market; it’s almost a year-and-a-half old. Had it not been for her rashes, I probably wouldn’t have thought of testing this one as I relied on the popular global brand. But now, I know this is the one I’m going to trust.

Price: Rs 480 for a pack of 3 on Amazon