Children and Nature

This is a Re-post of my article from ParentEdge magazine http://parentedge.in/teaching-your-children-about-the-natural-world/2/

Note that this article has been edited.

Teaching your children about the natural world


animalsWe introduce our kids to some common animals at a very young age. Which child will not know Cat, Dog, Monkey, Lion and birds like Crow, Pigeon, or Parrots? However, our children are not exposed to a wider range of the natural living world. How many children know Seagull, Vulture, Yak, Mongoose, Hyrax, or Wildebeest at an age of 3, 4, or even 9?

The activities I list below will open up a new world to your children and increase their knowledge of the animal kingdom. You can add other learning to these with Phonics and Alphabets as well.

Age: 6+

These activities are designed for any child who can independently cut, glue, converse, and has a basic understanding of the living world around us. Alternatively, parents can conduct this activity for their toddlers or preschoolers.

You need:

  1. A large flat surface to work on: like the table or the floor.
  2. Print outs of several insects – uncut sheet: check image below for some of the insect names.
  3. Print outs of several animals – each animal cut into a square card. Make sure you have a variety of animal types like ones that live in the cold, in tropical or warm areas, mammals, non-mammals, etc. You may choose to keep the sheet uncut if you wish for the kids to do it.
  4. A pair of scissors per child.
  5. Glue stick per child.
  6. Markers and crayons for decoration.

ACTIVITY ONE – INSECT GARDEN

  1. Introduce children to all the insects you have on the sheet/s. You may share some fun facts about each insect at this point.
  2. Inform the kids that they are going to make an insect garden of their own, the way they like it. Show them an example from the image below and mention that different children make it in different ways and they are all ‘okay’. There is no one way to make it.
  3. Have children cut out all the insects. If you notice in the picture, I did not have insects printed in an aligned manner. This means it wasn’t as simple as cutting them into squares. Children had to work hard to cut around rounded areas without cutting into the next image. This helps increase attention, motor movements, eye-brain-hand co-ordination, and overall practice!

Allow them to stick their insects on a blank, white page to create their unique ‘Insect Farm’ or ‘Insect Garden’. They may use markers and colors to decorate the space and even draw.

insect farm5. Bring to their attention that they may categorize the insects as per their wish. In the image above, my daughter (age 5) categorized them as the ones she Loves and ones she Doesn’t Love. Some other kids categorized them by ones that can fly and ones that crawl OR they may not categorize them at all

6. They may create and share a story out of their garden if they wish to.

ACTIVITY TWO – ANIMAL and BIRD PLAY CARDS

animal categories

  1. Have the animal and bird play cards either cut out beforehand or have the kids do it.
  2. DO NOT go over each animal or bird. We are going to leave it for the kids to discover that on their own.
  3. Challenge the kids to be able to separate the birds and animals in two sections in the shortest time possible. You may time the kids if you wish.

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birdsGo over the answers and see who did it right. Note that some of them could be a challenge. g. Bats are animals that can fly (mammals) and ostriches are birds even though they cannot fly

5. You may now play other games using the same cards and may even make groups to challenge the kids. Eg.You can see in my animal section, I have categorized animals that live in the cold, ones that are found in the African Safaris, and the rest kept separate.

Make up your own games with these cards. Below are some examples I have stated.

  1. Phonics: Kids must pick out all the cards that belong to the alphabet sound you make.
    g. if you say the sound ‘Au’, they must pull out Ostrich and Ox. Focus on the sound here, not the alphabet.
  2. Alphabet: Kids must categorize all animals and birds mixed together as per their starting or ending letters.
    E.g. Seagull, Seal go in one section.
  3. Letters: Kids must arrange cards as per the letters you mention.
    E.g. if you say all the cards that have an ‘H’ in them go in the same category. So Ostrich, Cheetah, Hummingbird go in one section.
  4. Patterns: Kids must arrange all cards in altering patterns like one animal, one bird. You may time them for the same.
  5. Quiz: Take up to 6 cards at a time to help kids memorize names with 3-4 repetitions and then quiz them. Doing all the cards at once may be too overwhelming.
  6. G.K.: Share more information about each animal / bird.
    E.g. The reason why bats are not birds and ostriches are not animals. How different animals adapt to their environment; offspring names, and so on.

Parents, share your responses on these activities. Do you find this activity easy, fun, and educational? How soon are you committed to perform this activity with your kid/s? Did your kid/s enjoy these? What are your questions and queries? Do write back.

The Biography of a Fearless Parent

~ Copyrights reserved.

Parent of the Month (July 2015): Deepak Chheda: aka ‘BHAISHREE’

“The waves of the sea tide high and low to test the strengths within you. They rise up high to see if you can fly when you cannot swim. They bow down low when they know that you shall glow even through a whole bunch of grey clouds!” ~ Dedicated to Dad by Rima D.

It is tough enough to be a Parent, think of being a Single Parent to two young girls with no real career or earning to begin with. In a NEED TO GET INSPIRED?! Read how this parent fearlessly faced all the challenges that life hunted him with…

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Dad was just about to be 34 years when Mom’s sudden demise struck him with immense shock and grief. Then, he had an older daughter at 9 years and me at 6 years. Call it trauma or chaos, he not only had two daughters to care for but also an immense financial burden.

I still remember the day when I was wondering why people all around me are all dressed in white and why they are all crying. What would I understand at 6 years of age? One of the following day, there was an exaggerated silence in our extended living room. Dad was sitting quiet on the 2-3 seater sofa we had – the only furniture that accompanied the long room. Everything seemed empty, not only our hearts, but also our home, and it felt like even the dead living room was crying to be more ‘busy’. I was wearing my white and red two-piece night dress with red hearts on the pockets, beautiful frills. It was my favorite dress. I asked dad – “Where is mom?” He sat there with no response. I can only imagine, how life’s painful demands must have blown upon dad like a loud, commanding trumpet that shakes us from our dearest dream. But he made it through…!

I have seen Dad take heavy loans in an attempt to give us just basic living. We lived in a huge home which was granted by grandpa but besides of that, we literally struggled for even basic clothes or good food. People judged us from the home we had and thought we were rich. We also lived in a suburb that belonged to the elite class since grandpa built his home there and we had cousins that were truly very well off. Our family was socially knit and religiously driven. Hence we had several rituals to attend many times in a month and when all of this is put together, dad had a lot to keep up to: The worry of building his business from scratch, educating his daughters while on a heavy loan, having someone take care of us after school (since school ended by 1pm);  get us enough clothes to keep up with the family and religious rituals, have maids to help us with house work – which was always a huge challenge, and a lot more… I remember his tears and worry when his very own close family members wanted to snatch our home and have us come on the streets. Dad had a legal battle to win to save his two daughters from being homeless, I remember that day when, the little child became his parent and said – “It will be okay dad” but inside my heart, I was hurt, scared, in anger. I remember tons of days of darkness, sadness, struggles in our lives where dad had to fight many social, emotional and financial battles…

I don’t think even a 100 pages can suffice for what I would want to express or vent you may say. I can say that no matter what faults others find, I can vouch for what he did right! In spite of massive financial burden and almost no support from outside, he gave us the best education. He put us in the most competitive and expensive school in one of the most elite areas of the prestigious Mumbai City!

That education has today led me to be this person who is writing on this blog, serving the community, and build a personality that can adapt to any cultural backdrop across the world. I haven’t had a problem conversing in English and interacting with the general public across different countries. My School played big role in it!
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I am honored to have learnt some amazing things from dad:

  1. Excellent Organizational Skills: Until date, I haven’t met anyone who can beat dad in his organizational skills.

  2. Social Skills: Over the years, I saw dad as very sociable. He was friendly, helpful and was quick to make them feel comfortable and good about themselves.

  3. Hard work and the value of being Responsible: Maybe there are people more hardworking than my dad or maybe there aren’t! I cannot owe him enough to teach me this important value. Dad gave his best swim across the tough tides of life. He never backed from his responsibilities even when he had several strong enemies in his business and life. I witnessed him face them all with great courage.

  4. God-fearing and religious – Dad exposed us to deep religious knowledge of Jainism and its rituals. Sometimes it felt like it was too much for a child but today I cherish those experiences and knowledge. It has imparted great wisdom and strength into me. He believed in God and taught us values like being kind, never eat animals, etc.. By belief in God and by modelling courage, he taught us to be Brave and Optimistic in life.

  5. Skills with Kids: Dad is just super with kids. He did great in having cousins stay overnight, arranging games and activities with them, teaching us in fun yet educational ways, entertaining the younger tots, etc. I subconsciously learnt a lot about playing with kids by watching dad over the years.

  6. Have the Faith: Dad taught without the use of words, that having faith and having an optimistic ‘expectation’ out of Life, always leads us to a ‘good’ place. He always taught me – “Never fear”.

  7. Strong cultural roots: I learnt to interact with elders, be courteous, be rooted to my homeland, to my religion, culture, be curious of other cultures, etc all from dad through his wise advices and by observing him.

  8. Business Skills: I have observed him to be an honest, fierce and powerful businessman.

I have learnt a lot from him and still continue to. No parent is perfect and no parent should be, because all that matters if we are bonded with ‘Love’. Love makes it Perfect.

“Dad I am Honored for all that I have learnt from you. You deserve all the success that is coming to You for Jee and me know how much you have invested into us and into life! We love You Unconditionally and so do your Grand-children”. Also, a Big Thank You to Jinal di for participating in this and for being a great sister through and through all the years till now”.

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Elder Daughter: JINAL

“Whatever I am today is only and only because of my Father. A highly organized person and extremely dedicated to his duties he has brought us up in a very cultured and disciplined environment. Playing the role of a mother and father is not easy. We have seen hardships he has faced in order to raise us so diligently. Spiritual and honest in his ways, he has given us a strong base to face the outside world. He always wears a smile and his simplicity adds a charm to his personality.

He can be like a child with his grandchildren and mold himself easily to his surroundings. Words are not enough to say or justify what I owe to him. Also Dad, Sarthak receives so much joy learning and playing with you”.

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A sincere and heartfelt ‘THANK YOU’ to you Dad for all that you have done for us. Love You!

        HBDD

BHAISHREE’S PARENTS – My Grandparents :))

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BHAISHREE’S ACTIVITIES

Dad continues to live independently by himself since 9 years now. He is as active as before but is living a simpler and a much more religious life now. He is now fiercely active in the Jain religious spectrum with his organization https://www.facebook.com/pages/International-Jain-Foundation-IJF-Mumbai/

He is working towards creating more awareness of and support for the Jain Sect. His recent, Jain event in Mumbai was embraced with a huge sucess. He is commonly and respectfully referred to as ‘Bhaishree’ by all who know him in recognition of the work he is doing for the Jain Community. This name has been ‘gifted’ to him by a Jain Monk.

 
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Comedy with Kids! Free Tickels…All Day!

Also posted in Parent-Edge Magazine on Aug 28, 2015

http://parentedge.in/free-tickles-all-day-fun-with-kids-like-never-before/

Having fun with kids is as easy as 2 + 2. Literally, all one needs is Kids and the willingness to be open, to be guided by kids themselves. We truly know a lot more about life as kids than as adults. Think of it – as adults we are stressed, we need Yoga, we need therapy, we need medicines, psychiatrists, and what nots! As kids all we need is – AN OPPORTUNITY, ANY OPPORTUNITY and we can create that into fun, laughter, joy, charisma!

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Today was our ‘Planned Funny Day’. We did not have any activities planned until the day began. All we knew is that we were going to wear our T-shirts ‘Backside Front’ and have fun! What began with a simple I-D-E-A, transformed into a day of thrill with a bunch of absolute crazy heads!

Here is a quick post (may be edited later) on the dozen ideas that ‘popped’ up like a string from a magician’s hat, merely from the start of a single wish to have fun!!!! I wont have some pictures here which features all the front faces but some cropped images to look forward to.

So we had my daughter’s friends visit me for this ‘Fun Day’. As they came with T-shirts rolled back, it was fun to see the spirit splashing around. Here’s one kid who totally flaunted this:

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And then I was the role-model of course. Got the kids ‘cracked up’ with these ones :D

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We used props to become different ‘Personalities’ and believe me we laughed, danced, marched our funny bands too!

PERFECT NOSE FLAUNTS

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MERRYING WITH MOUSTACHES

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MUSIC ON THE MOVE
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I AM THE SOCCER GUY
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2 o LALA, LADY GAGA!

That’s that for all the snap shots for our big shots! Let’s move now to fun activities. Who knows about the ‘Donkey’s Tail’?

4   10 Ha ha!

Our art was about making Funny Puppet Faces. Kids can be K-reative!

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We Colored Mr. Clown

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Then I had TICKLE – FINGERS: tickles18 (SOURCE Google Images Filtered Search)

and lastly we played a Game which kids love. We call it the Freeze Laugh games. We freeze in groups and kids in pairs must make us laugh around some rules.

It was a Crazy, Fun Day for Us. Feeling Inspired for Fun?!

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ARIZONA’S REAL LIFE STORY: A Contagious Act of Kindness!

ACTS OF KINDNESS

Often as parents we are frenzied over what to teach our kids and what to leave out. It seems the world’s encyclopedia cannot fit in everything that we may want our kids to learn. The most popular is of course, all the classes we want them to take; especially influenced by the ones their friends and cousins are taking. From all that could be possible under the sky, I give EXTREME Importance to teaching Kids KINDNESS and COMPASSION. These are ‘Qualities of Character’ which cannot be taught by ‘lecturing’ or by narrating ‘stories’. We – Adults, must be involved with the kids for them to see, to know, to experience. We must have a heart filled with Kindness which spreads joy and affection like a ‘contagious, irresistible hobby’.

Read this real life story, fresh from June 2015 ~ with Rima Desai

A story of 4 innocent hands powered by The Joy of Giving!

As the car screeched Stop by the beautiful waters, we could see how the heat at 37 degrees Celsius had left the place to a mere silence. Not a single soul! Out jumped the 4 little Heroes as I clamped their caps 1,2,3, .. The walk from the car to under the shaded tree was a bit of a journey, as the soaring sun stared angrily at our path. Finally under the shade, I removed our ‘packets of kindness’. With the intention to surprise the ducks, all of our 5 hands began offering bread crumbs in the water.

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Kids were thrilled to see that ducks that were snug and rested on the other side of the shore, began peddling into a flock and soon into a raft of little hungry mouths. The excitement was contagious! We saw some of the ducks fly in a frenzy. Our act of kindness drew not just the animals but also many ‘hidden’ pigeons and other birds into this ‘feast’. Our expressions clearly screamed more enthusiasm- “Where did they come from!”
We stood there for a good 20 minutes making our offerings in the water and on the grass. Most of the kids (except mine) were experiencing ducks up close for the first time; almost nibbling at their feet! It was a bit scary at first but soon became a sense of thrill and joy.

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We walked further looking for more ducks as we saved 1 full bag of the ‘kindness crumbs’. The lake was huge and so was our need to feed!

Walking further, we saw a pair of ducks swimming towards us. We realized that it was a ‘New Born baby’ being accompanied by its Mom. A cry of extreme excitement filled the air as all 5 of us were overthrown with joy to witness a new born baby duck for the first time! Our love for the cute baby spilled out ‘as if’ it could understand all that we said. We wished we had more food to offer and decided to return another day.

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Back home, we shared the pictures with each kids’ family. Parents were thrilled and overjoyed to know their kids were involved in such an act of kindness and that their kids were eager enough to share more kindness in days to come!

This post is brought to you by Facebook/Parenting Booth by Rima Desai. It is inspired by ‘It is a Happy World’s’ motivation to spread Happy News. Thank You Mihir Upadhyay for your contribution and for inspiring me to bring more ‘life’ to the post.

Anand Jaisinghani – July 2015

It gives me great pleasure to share this post as a dedication of my fondness and admiration of my First Cousin Anand ‘bhai’. I may have never told you, but I have always admired you Bhai. Happy B’day!

~ This post is brought to You by Rima Desai. All rights reserved. You may also read this post on my fb page: Parenting Booth: https://www.facebook.com/parentingbooth ~

FROM NATASHA TO HER DAD

On this Special Day I wish to Say, You are My much Admired for all that you have brought into my life.

hb TO dad p

“The days when you picked me on your shoulders and ran around the home, talked for long hours and never made me feel alone. When all the Qs I asked, unanswered you left none; spending times together, messing the home, eating chocolate, and all your surprises were a lot of fun!!

While I grew, I learnt a lot from You and when I went to Boarding, things changed into something new. I remember the letters I wrote and out of desperation, waited to hear from You. The more I shared my excitement and experiences with you, the more  the feelings of missing You within me brew. It took me that distance to realize how important You are to me and now, I could go on scratching our wonderful memories with a lot of glee. I must stop here to say I LOVE YOU DADDY, VERY DEEPLY!

I may have not expressed it like this before, but I do feel it with much rife, I am proud to say – You are the Greatest inspiration of my life!”

SOME OF YOUR BEST QUALITIES DAD

  1.  You explain anything to me in a Calm manner. Dad you have the power to make me feel Serene
    CALM
  2. You are super helpful. These are all your helping hands which I have observed over the years!
    helpful
  3. You are so selfless dad. You think so much for others versus yourself! You are such a loving and caring person, you have taught me to
    love
  4. Even though you don’t cook so often, when you do, it is SUPER DUPER DELICIOUS!!!!!! Dad I grant you the label ofmaster chef
  5. You have another special quality Dad – You are Verycreativity-396268_640

 

THREE THINGS I ENJOY DOING WITH YOU DAD

  1. Going for a drive

 

  1. Watching  NG or xpl  Channelor just sitting together and asking you tons of questions related to these channels.

 

 

  1.  We’ve never done that but… I would love to cook and learn things from You.

               YOU ARE MY hero DAD

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VEGAN HIGH PROTEIN CREPE

Crepe is a French word for a thin pancake which can essentially be curled up. Crepes have been an integral part of North and West Indian cooking for several decades. They make for a nutritious and a filling meal, all curled up together.

Being an artistic leader is an essential part of my personality and that shows up pretty well in the kitchen too. Rarely do I read a recipe from start to end and follow it to the T!  I have always preferred to be the one creating a recipe than the one who follows it. Today was something like that. I brought out the ingredients and then asked myself – how to use these to make dinner? ‘Ting’ went my mind – OATMEAL CREPE

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Find the Ingredient Photographs below.

  1. Oatmeal – 3 cups and churn into dry powder
  2. Poha (Beaten Rice) – 2 cups and churn into dry powder
  3. Urad Daal (Split black gram: split and hulled so that only the white part is used) – 2 cups and churn into dry powder
  4. Kale – 4 cups
  5. Spring Onions – One bunch – appx. 5 thin.
  6. Salt to taste
  7. Pepper 3-4 Tbsps.
  8. Cinnamon powder – 1 Tbsp.
  9. Red Chili Powder – 1 tsp.
  10. Water to make a medium thick, flowy batter

HOW TO:

Churn all well in as many batches as needed. The batter looks a bit grainy and that is ok. Add water whenever needed. If the batter is not used immediately, it may soak up water and look thicker when removed for use. Use your discretion in adding water. Spread on warm non-stick skillet. Make crepes as usual!

PROBLEM AREAS?

If it lumps up on the warm skillet, then it surely needs water. If it is so thin or soft that the crepe breaks on the skillet, then you may churn up either of the above dry ingredient into a powder and add it. You may even directly add Bengal gram flour which helps in binding ingredients. Remember at least part of the batter a churn in the blender once you add any dry flour to it. This will help keep the batter smooth and easy to spread.

The batter can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 7 days however, best flavor when consumed within 3 days!

SUCCESS STORY!  :D

My family over-ate today! They said they loved it! It is a great recipe for kids too since they can roll it and eat by themselves by dipping in butter, sauce, or cilantro and tamarind dips. Use it while travelling!!!

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Poha - Beaten Rice
Poha – Beaten Rice
Urad Daal Or Split & Hulled Black Gram
Urad Daal Or
Split & Hulled Black Gram
The batter
The batter

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Also read: INDIAN GINGER TEA (CHAI)
with a Video Tutorial!

Danny Carvalho – June 2015 Young Dad

This article is brought to you by Rima Desai ~ Copyrights reserved. It aims to appreciate young dads for their contribution in caring for their kid/s. You may also read it here: https://www.facebook.com/parentingbooth

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My   superman    Dad is    telegram35    years Today!

“Dad You are the Best!”

Words by themselves cannot describe my amazing dad. The day I was born dad was the first and the happiest person to hold me. He said, “Daddy’s little princess is here”. When mom worked 6 days a week, Dad spent an entire day with me each week. On that day he would take over mom’s role pretty well – he would feed me, bathe me, and also change my diapers.

Dad You are my Favorite because:

  •  You love to crack jokes and make me laugh
  • I love the way you tuck me in your arms and rock me to sleep with your sweet lullabies. For me you are the best singer in the world. Ha ha ;)

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Dad, I admire that you do chores such as ironing all my clothes and mopping  mop (Mom is lucky!)

Overall you are quiet a Cool Parent Sometimes you get impatient, but that much is allowed ;)

I enjoy watching      tv  TV with you while mom is already asleep    zzz

Dad You are not good at:

Cooking! You sure are a very bad cook and I see how you rely on Fast Food when Mom is not around.

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Remember daddy my little poem phrase – “Fast Food is not Good”.

Special Notes

Dad You are my First Love and my Superhero forever! No matter what I do or what I say, I know for a fact that you will always support me. Dad for You – “Any man can be a Father but it takes someone special to be a DAD!”

hb1  Dad! IMG_4078 Love You!

Also read: https://mystyrimz.wordpress.com/2015/06/01/youngdadmay2015/

 

SPIRIT VS. ELECTRONICS

Spirit vs. Computer. With the Magic powers of my Spirit how much Tech do I need?
Read on…

Last weekend at a site-seeing spot this person comes up to and asks me to click his family. I was surprised to see the camera was size of a cookie- Glucose biscuit size! I am not at all a ‘Tech’ person, uninterested! Yes, I like to use it and I need this laptop rt now to print this – but I need nothing Fancy and don’t find any interest in staying up-to-date with it.

On the contrary, ask me about what I personally call – ‘Spiritual Technology’: I can tell you and teach you a lot about: Clairvoyance, Intuition, Psychic readings, Hypnosis, Past-life regression, Astrology, Zodiac Signs, Polarity, Reiki, Energy related work, Meditation of Several types, Karma Theories, Heavenly bodies, Spirits, and so on..

Why should I find interest in Technology when I can feel your energies, know what you are doing, read your mind often even WORD BY WORD, feel your feelings even if you are a 1000 or 100,000 miles away; When I can tell who is calling or texting me before I see the phone, why you did what you did before I ask you, when I can look into my past life and tell you and me what was it like and give you proof of it, when I can dream in advance what is going to happen, when I can help myself with meditation and hypnosis to alter my life style for the better, when I can half heal my physical hurt with reiki….

…when I can tell you about your childhood or your relationships at home by just interacting with you, when I can look at your face and capture your overall personality, character, and above all: HAVE MY TEAM OF POWERFUL ANGELS WORKING WITH ME.The list goes on…. I am still on the journey but I sure have come far and realizing how powerful this magic is!! Those who are out of touch with that world, are missing out a lot!!!! There is so much out there in the Universe and within you…

“It is the most intriguing part of life. It is like all of us have 2 lands every where we step – it is either the Spirit land or the Material Land. It is what you chose to land on, that you chose to make more Powerful!” ~ By Rima Desai

Sagar Yerunkar – May 2015

This article is brought to you by Rima Desai ~ Copyrights reserved. It aims to appreciate young dads for their contribution in caring for their kid/s. You may also read it here: https://www.facebook.com/parentingbooth

SAGAR YERUNKAR – MAY 2015

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At 13 years (sometimes I read numbers backwards), my dad is super supportive! There isn’t much of an age gap between  dad and me. I turned 1 few days ago and daddy turned 31 on May 16th.  See, we are only 3 apart ;)

One thing is definite – my dad has mastery over story-telling.


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When he narrates me a story, he captures our attention. I may be distracted but yet, I get engulfed in his stories; mom too! You can see mom’s palm on her chin, eyes and ears in deep attention. And even if I hear less than half the story, dad continues it with a lot of enthusiasm. Love it dad! Now I can tell how dad charmed mommy. How many stories did you make up dad to impress mom?!

My dad is fun! Papa ensures he gets home on time to enjoy with me before I zzzz.

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 Mom says Dad’s face is a lantern of happiness when he makes me laugh. He does it every day and it is priceless to watch! Dad doesn’t know I just laugh because I don’t want to disappoint him. ;) (Just kiddin’!)

 

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Mom is pretty smart too. She knows how to put dad to work. She uses her leadership skills with him too. Guess, that (shhh… mom shouldn’t hear), mom has stringed dad into feeding me breakfast, dinner, and cleaning my dirty diapers on the weekends. Pee yu! :p

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Plus he does many more things to give her time. But I see why dad does it – he loves mom (nobody should know he is a little scared of mom too, like half a chocolate piece scared). Dad don’t worry, I didn’t tell mom how you sneak into the chocolate box.

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There are 3 things that dad barely does half as good as mom (sorry dad, mom told me to write this ;))

  1.  Tear free bathing
  2. Getting me to close my eyes for sweet dreams
  3. Keeping me still while changing my diaper

 But then Dad has his strengths too! Here is my SD – SUPER DAD

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Dad is Super good at

  1. Dressing me
  2.  Taking me to car rides

3. And playing Peek-a-Boo with me!

 Mom says: “Sagar is a super protective dad. Seeing them play together makes me wonder if boys will always be boys”.

HB DADDY!
Happy B’day DADDY!

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Also read: Young dad for April – https://mystyrimz.wordpress.com/2015/04/04/aprildad2-com/

 

The Biography of a Beautiful, Courageous Mother

Parent of the Month II (May 2015): LATE MRS. MAYA CHHEDA

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 Today: 14th May, is my Late Mom’s birthday – Mrs. Maya Chheda. ‘My Parent of the Month’ Series will be incomplete without her mention. I will like to dedicate this post to her with the intention that it will reach her wherever she is. I believe that she did a lot more for others than she received. I intend that with this post, her soul ‘hears’ that she is valued, loved, cared for, and MISSED by many of us even now; that I owe her my life and I Thank her for all the goodness that she instilled in my sister and me in early years. She passed away at an early age of 33 years and I missed out on learning a lot more things from her.

Today I was working at my laptop when suddenly my daughter began singing – “Happy Birthday to you…” Oblivious in my work, I asked her whose birthday was it? She ignored my question and continued singing in the end addressing it to her grandma (my mom). I was thrilled! :)

 

MOM’S BACKGROUND 

Mom was born in a large family of 10 children. She was the last of them all and sadly for her, she didn’t get a chance to even see her dad. Her father passed away when she was yet to be born.

The growing years for all the children including her were filled up numerous hardships. Her mom (my grandma) had to financially support the family and also look after so many children. Even though grandma was physically present, she was emotionally missing from mom’s life. Mom was brilliant in academics and she received support from her mom and siblings to study. She was about to finish her Doctorate but did not end up giving the very last paper!

In her own life, mom had considerable financial struggles while she brought us up. She did the best in giving us the love and support she could. There were times of severe financial difficulty and I heard from my elders that she would not eat a single slice of fruit because she would save them to give it to my sister and me.
From the vague memory that I have of my mom, I remember that she would have us recite religious prayers before sleeping, from a very young age. Those values which she gave me in the first years of life, did remain with me and I can say that they came to my ‘rescue’ in my dark times. It helped me immensely to have faith in God and believe in praying.

 “Wherever you are Mom, I want to Thank You for embedding religious and moral values in me at a very early age and giving us all the care and love you did. We cherish that and love you”.

Below are heart-felt shares from some of her family members:

NIECE

“I loved her a lot. She was very intelligent and religious. She had studied Jain religion in deep. She was an expert in cooking and her pani puri was the world’s best. I was very fond of her. She was my ideal and I always wanted to be like her. Your Mom always believed in equality between girl and boy. She never approved of gender bias and clearly corrected those who discriminate between their son and daughter. I still remember her saying that one should give equal love to all children. I am going to feel her loss all my life”.

  

BROTHER-IN-LAW

 “As her name suggests, MAYA, she was full of ‘love’. She was like a sister to me. She helped her sister (my wife) to get married in spite of her partial disability. She put an ad in Mumbai Samachar newspaper. Because of Sister Maya’s help, today I have a wonderful wife and daughter. 

She was the most beautiful person in the family by looks and by heart. She would treat guests as God and her sacrifice and love for the family was unmatching. She has helped my wife in many ways. When our apartment was getting painted for 9 days, she took my wife – her elder sister to her home forcibly because she knew her sister had allergy to paint. And in those 9 days of stay, even though Sister Maya had her own difficulties, she treated my wife (her elder sister) excellent. 

We all miss her a lot. Maybe God had a plan to have her meet her father in heaven and hence took her away from us so early. She has been a blessing and she has left behind 2 beautiful Angel Daughters. May God Bless her and Keep her united with all family members here and in heaven”.

 DAUGHTERS

 We mutually remember that Mom used to knit sweaters for us. She was super talented. And she always made our birthdays special by making THREE cakes for us. I clearly remember one of the Strawberry or Pink cake that she had made. It used to be Chocolate, Strawberry, and maybe Pineapple. We know that Mom loved us a lot and did many special things for us.

 I remember when I would go down to play without shoes and get hurt with nails from the playground or the times when mom would call us back home. She also taught us to help in the kitchen from young age as often her health would not be good.

  “Mom I always bake cake for your grand-daughter’s birthday and she loves it. If you were here today, I would bake THREE cakes for You! I trust that you are well wherever you are and may you celebrate that life with Love and Joy You were a very courageous person and you have passed that on to us. Thank You Mom for everything!”

from all of us :)

SISTER

 Maya was extremely talented and affectionate by nature. She was good looking, independent, and smart. – She was very fond of keeping a beautiful, neat,  and tidy home. Her interests and talents included cooking, stitching, and socializing. She enjoyed inviting people and was loved by her entire family because of her loving and generous nature. She had wonderful handwriting too. She loved her daughters immensely; even though she was strict with them in her discipline rarely have I seen a mother who loves her children so deeply.  I still resent the fact that she didn’t complete her doctorate and that she struggled a lot with her kids in the apartment she lived in. I always remember her sharing her wish to come to USA. Whatever I say about her will be less. She left behind a lot of memories in our hearts. Her sudden loss is a wound that cannot be healed.

SISTER II

If I have to sum up in just few words, I can say that Maya was my best friend.
When we were young we shared the same mattress to sleep together, knowing that we had a highly modest upbringing. We laughed, cried, fought, and confided in each other. Many a times she fought with entire family for me! She was the only one I could speak out my heart to about some things that I could not share with anyone else. I think I was v.protective about her. I miss her immensely!———

Thank You everyone for reading this article and for blessing her soul :) It is easier to write about others than to write about someone of your own. 

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