Contrary to what you may have heard, adding a furry or feathered member to your family can be a wonderful thing. Moreover, it comes with the added bonus of boosting self-esteem, lowering stress levels for everyone in the family, but most importantly, they can teach your little a great deal about love
There’s no denying that when you’re a parent, leaving your baby behind while you run errands, isn’t quite ideal. For busy working parents, when everything is usually on-the-go, going about your day with a baby in tow, makes the task at hand, even more of a challenge. With ample products developed to make a parent’s life easier, it’s no surprise that a kangaroo baby carrier, or sling (whatever your preference), does indeed leave your hands free to carry along a few other things. But, how sure are you that your baby is still being held the right way?
Read on to find out if you’re guilty of a few of these baby-wearing blunders:
The baby carrier is not of the right size: When you shop for your baby carrier, sling or wrap, there’s a chance you might get the wrong size. The carrier can either be too large or too small, or too loose or too tight. Remember, the carrier has to fit just right. It’s the only way to ensure your baby won’t be hurt when carried. Trying on the carrier before you make your purchase, ideally with your baby in it, is the best way to ensure that you have a proper fit.
You wear the baby too low: Wearing your baby low will not only make the baby slump, but will also make the process painful for you. Your baby’s head should rest on your chest. Now, if you choose to carry your baby on your back, his head should rest on your shoulder.
You cover the baby’s face: Covering your baby’s head with the fabric can cause suffocation. Make sure that you’re always able to see your baby’s face with a quick glance.
You do not support your baby’s neck: In the initial months, your baby’s neck muscles are still underdeveloped, and hence, cannot hold their necks up without the proper support, making their heads flop backwards. Make sure that any carrier you choose provides the necessary support to safely hold your baby’s neck in place.
We understand that baby care can be quite confounding. Whether you’re strapping your baby in correctly or wrapping your baby securely with that long piece of fabric, remember it’s okay to make a few mistakes, just as long as you can quickly learn from them. Keep these tips in mind and before you know it, you’ll be wearing your baby like a pro!
While we’re sure you can’t get enough of face time with your bundle of joy, sitting back and relaxing can actually help kick start your battery to enable you to give much more care to your baby, and family. Read on to know more
BY ARUNDHATI NATH
In most families, women are the primary care givers. Motherhood has no time gap in between. It is a duty which takes up almost all the time in a woman’s day. Taking time out for herself seems like a very difficult task for most mothers. However, a mother who takes care of herself is always in a better position to take care of others in the family.
Need for me time:
“Self-care is crucial for everyone, especially for moms. Since mothers have a lot on their plate, it becomes overwhelming and stressful,” says Nupur Roopa, founder, Bliss For Moms, a wellness site for mothers. “Today, mothers are extremely tired and sleep deprived. Having some
‘me time’ is essential to unwind, otherwise stress will eventually manifest as a physical disease,” she adds.
Pregnancy and motherhood lead to a lot of hormonal changes in a mother’s body. Moreover, moms go through a lot of stress and societal pressures as she is often held more accountable for her children’s well-being in comparison to her partner. “Caught in the whirlwind of nursing, burping, diaper change, and other things that go into round-the-clock baby care, a new mom is barely left with time to unwind. It’s easy for her to lose her sense of self and experience disillusionment, especially in the fi rst few months. So taking time out for herself can really help restore the balance within,” says Hyderabad-based mom Sumi Madireddy.
The guilt trap:
Mothers often feel guilty about taking time out for themselves. It is often considered selfish to do so and this thought is very deeply ingrained in most mothers’ minds. It is a social and cultural norm for mothers to take care of everyone else’s needs before thinking of their own well-being. Although everyone expects a mother to be there 24X7, it is essential for all to understand that a mom who doesn’t nurture herself well, will not be able to take care of others in the family for a long time.
How to find ‘me time’?
Mothers can engage in different recreational activities in their ‘me time’. According to Nupur Roopa, the kind of ‘me time’ activities a mother can engage in would depend on a number of factors such as age of the kids, family responsibilities, routines and schedules, and availability of time and space. “Considering these factors, mothers can create a list of activities that they enjoy ranging from five minutes to 30 minutes. If you can’t spare 30 minutes at one time, you could break it for shorter durations,” Nupur says. It is essential to hire help if you can. With the breakdown of joint families, there could be situations in which there isn’t anyone to fall back on in case of an emergency.
Nidhi Dorairaj Bruce, mom to three kids, shares an incident which reminds us how useful it is to hire help. “I learnt the hard way that it is okay to hire help in order to help with the children. I did not have any help till my daughter was almost four years old. I used to take care of her 24X7. Then one fine day my back gave way. I could not stand straight, let alone walk. My husband travels a lot and we are a nuclear family. With absolutely nobody to fall back on, I was completely helpless. That’s when I first hired help and learnt that it also was a great way for me to get some time for myself. Now with three kids, I have no choice but to have hired help. Because it is physically impossible for me to tend to the needs of three kids simultaneously!” she says.
Me time is all about the things that give you a sense or please and relaxation. For some, it could be unwinding with a good book, for others, it could be hitting the gym. Here are just some ways in which you can make time to relax. | MB
TWENTY ME TIME IDEAS!
1. Read that novel you bought last year and couldn’t complete as you were busy.
2. Take a short walk amidst nature.
3. Do some gardening.
4. Listen to some uplifting music or to a podcast.
5. Write a few lines in your journal.
6. Go social on Facebook.
7. Get some exercise in the gym.
8. Practice yoga and meditation.
9. Engage in a hobby. It could be music, dance,
a sport, cooking or baking a favourite dish.
10. Shop online if you do not have the time to step out of the house.
11. Go for a cup of coffee with your girlfriends.
12. Pamper yourself to a facial, massage or pedicure.
13. Watch a movie at home. Do it in parts, if necessary.
14. Grab some pencils and paints and do some sketching and colouring.
15. Do some overdue organising.
16. Watch nature or the world pass from outside your window.
17. Read your favourite magazine.
18. Take a short nap.
19. Take a pampering shower.
20. Visit your best friend or go on a girl’s day out.
Trust us when we say, you’ll be thankful for this time away. When you get back home, you won’t be able to wait to dive in to the madness, head first!
RICH hues, luxurious silks, ornate weaves and embellished fabrics come together to create all that defines festive fervour, royal grandeur and celebratory mood. Fabindia unveiled its latest Rajwada, festival collection of garments and accessories. Rajwada brings to you one of the most extensive and premium collection of silk blends and silks in Indian and fusion wear for men, women and kids. Ornate and elaborate craft techniques such as Benarasi, Zardozi and other intricate weaving techniques become the mainstay of the collection which infuses hints of gold to create a luxuriant festive look true to the craft heritage. Take your pick from styles with detailing in gota patti, zari, brocade, sequin and mirror work, gold khari block prints and embroidery on vibrant colours. The collection is available in all Fabindia outlets
FABINDIA’S maternity wear range brings you a range of day and evening wear. The collection emphasises on styling while creating comfortable choices. Look gorgeous with the array of options extending from comfort wear, smart work wear to traditional wear in kurtas, tops, palazzos, dresses and pants. Combining style and functionality, the garments come with fit details such belly panels in palazzos, front open plackets for easy-nursing, pleated self-fabric seams for more ease and empire lines. Created with natural and breathable fabrics such as cotton, linen and silk blends, the collection highlights a fresh colour palette and soft prints. High on style and comfort these garments work just as well post-delivery. The collection is available at select stores across India and online.
From physical attributes to personality traits, you don’t have to wait to see how your baby will turn out. Get a glimpse into her future right now!
ZERO TO SIX MONTHS
● From the moment she’s born, your gorgeous baby’s main form of communication is crying. She’ll have a different cry to match each specific need, whether she’s hungry, cold, bored, or just wants a cuddle. Distinguishing which cry means what is a skill every new mum has to learn, so don’t worry if takes you a little while to catch on.
● By six months, your baby will be making her first attempts at talking to you. She’ll start by making cooing sounds, and ‘ooooos’ and ‘aaaaahs’, even ‘babababa’. You can help with her speech development by constantly chatting to her, even if it’s just a running commentary on what you’re doing. She’ll love to hear your voice, although she won’t have a clue what you’re talking about!
SIX TO 12 MONTHS
● Even though it’s still too early for her to be saying words, the sounds she makes now become much more tuneful as she tries to imitate your voice. She’ll increasingly start to ‘answer’ you back when you talk to her.
● Encourage her to make even more sounds by copying her babbling replies. This teaches her about two-way communication and could make for some interesting conversations!
● Another way to help her understand the meanings of words is by using gestures and actions, such as waving when you say ‘bye-bye’, or pointing to her cup as you say ‘drink’.
● Around now she’ll also gain more control over her muscles and will start reaching out with both arms to tell you she wants to be picked up for a cuddle. She’ll also start to laugh around now, a sound you’re guaranteed to want to bottle so you can keep forever!
12 TO 18 MONTHS
● Expect to hear her first meaningful word as she hits her first birthday. Most babies first words tend to be ‘Dada’, as this is easier for her to pronounce, so don’t take offence. Or it may even be a random word like ‘shoe’! Whatever it is, it’s an important milestone for her, so be sure to give her lots of praise.
● Once she’s a year old, she’ll also begin to understand what you’re saying to her. Some babies even start to use two or three words with their own meaning now. Even if the word doesn’t match the object she’s referring to, if she uses it consistently for that object, it shows she understands the meaning.
● By 18 months, most little ones are able to use around 20 different words (although they may be completely unintelligible to anyone but immediate family!), but she won’t yet be forming a sentence.
● Girls tend to be more chatty than little lads (that shouldn’t come as a shock—it lasts until adulthood!), so don’t be surprised if she even starts singing along to nursery rhymes now. (Little Peter Rabbit is a great rhyme to sing as it involves actions, which connect to the language and helps build her understanding and memory). Some babies with older siblings can be a little slower to talk, so don’t worry if that’s the case. They often find it hard to get a word in with older brothers and sisters pitching in.
● Expect her to start putting two or three words together to make a constructive sentence now, such as ‘Daddy come home’.
● Help her expand single words into short sentences by adding words, so if she asks for ‘juice’, you can add, ‘juice, please’ or ‘more juice’.
● Use objects and gestures to help her understand instructions and questions. It’s also good to offer her alternatives, such as ‘Do you want teddy or the car?’
● By the age of two, your child should have a collection of about 200 different words. If she still hasn’t started speaking by now, it’s worth visiting your paediatrician to check there are no physical problems, such as deafness, or glue ear.
● It’s important to remember that no two babies are the same, and your tot will develop at a different rate from the next one, so don’t stress out comparing her to others |MB