Hang in there Mamma- you are not alone! We’ve got you!
I can imagine how trying, frustrating and totally unpredictable this entire social distancing thing can be. Extended session break or a whole gamut of holidays is a sure spanner in the works. And it’s still a long way to go.
We are here to assist you in balancing things – so many different scenarios for you to handle.
Here are a few tips and tricks and tons of ideas to ease the days ahead
A is for Assimilate:
Get an old notebook out and jot down all the things you’ve always wanted to do but always had the excuse – There is no time.
B is for Bake:
Get into your kitchen with your kid. Here are a few easy cookie recipes to try. Don’t have an OTG (Oven) – don’t worry – here are two super easy mug cake recipes for you to try.
C is for Cook:
Come on children- let’s cook today. Start with something as basic as a roti (they will thank you one day when they live alone!) If they’re up for it here is a super easy pizza dough recipe without yeast.
You will find many more recipes where that came from- Click Here
D is for Dance:
Put on your Spotify or any music app you choose and play some peppy music. Dance it out – great energy to begin or wind up the day with
E is for Exams !!:
Yes, some of us are going through the inevitable Board exams and it is indeed stressful. As one such Mom my main stress is that they should be completed as scheduled.
F is for Fear:
Check out this simple comic book and read it to your children. ( Link to the comic book – https://www.mohfw.gov.in/Corona_comic_PGI.pdf) It will remove fear from their minds which they may have inadvertently downloaded from the overload of news or conversations adults have
G is for Gardening:
Dig into the dirt. Mix the mud. Plant, weed, and arrange. Just removing dead leaves and adding homemade fertilizer (suggestions- pureed eggshells, vegetable waste and banana skins) to plants can increase their longevity. Order some seeds online and try and grow some veggies. Our community is filled with many home gardeners only too ready to share their knowledge
H is for Hands:
We have to keep our hands clean! There are many videos online which teach kids handwashing in a fun way. I used this one for my son to explain better. It’s so catchy will get stuck in your head .Don’t forget to moisturize your hands at night as all the washing and sanitizing can lead to dryness. Ensure you rub in the cream really well.
I is for Innovate:
Chart out your children’s interests and keep finding ways to enhance them. At the end of this article are a whole bunch of links to ensure they keep busy online and learn stuff along the way
I is also for Immunity:
Give your child seasonal fruits. They need Vitamin C. Use age old recipes to build up their immunity. Good old Haldi doodh (Turmeric latte as it’s now called ) and Rasam are great ways to keep colds at bay.
I slice slivers of fresh haldi and freeze it. Then drop two or three roundels into any curry or soup made at home.
A simple winter soup recipe: Sauté in mustard oil one onion, one potato and 2 turnips(shalgam). Add 4-6 pods of garlic. Add 2 cups water and pressure cook for 2-3 whistles. Cool, Puree and strain. Add salt and black pepper powder. Before serving give a tadka (tempering) in mustard oil of Hing ( asafoetida) saunth ( dry ginger) and saunf ( fennel) powder.
K is for Kindle:
The Kindle is a blessing to many readers. I am addicted to mine. At times like this when we don’t want to borrow from libraries downloading the kindle app on a device could encourage reading in children. There are a host of free books on Kindle unlimited. You could even promise them a movie if they read the book first. Required reading time is a must – start with half an hour and gradually increase it.
L is for Links:
As mentioned earlier there is a plethora of websites that offer great content. My son’s teacher forwarded an awesome message which had a ton of very useful and educational links. Please find them at the end of this article.
M is for Make:
Yes make – make anything and everything! There are tons of great ideas for eco-friendly Arts & Crafts online. I will elaborate a little further under P. You can start with a very basic timetable of activities planned for the week. Use cardboard (what are those amazon boxes there for?) Stick newspaper atop and paint! Make a colourful timetable with activities to look forward to.
Here’s one on how to make a notebook out of wastepaper
N is for Netflix :
Yes Netflix because Mom needs a break and she has to get chores done around the home as well. The good thing about Netflix is that it has a huge dedicated Kids section. It’s also verified content so there is no risk of any unwanted advertisements popping up. So go ahead and let your kids watch some of these popular choices
Just add magic, Matilda, Young Sheldon ,Star Trek, Mr. Bean ,Full House & Brain Games
Other online platforms :
Hotstar: Martian Mega Rover, A Wrinkle in Time, Mahabharata and more
Amazon Prime: Young Sheldon, Horrid Henry and Many Bollywood classics
O is for Outdoors:
Yes, we have to keep social distances, however that does not mean you cannot go down/ out for a walk. With smaller children especially ensure they wash hands immediately after returning and do not touch their eyes and mouth whilst outside. If you meet people use a traditional greeting like Namaste instead of shaking hands.
P is for Pinterest :
There is no dearth of information on Pinterest( https://in.pinterest.com/) You name it and it’s there. Kids crafts, activities, creative timetables. Healthy baking , cooking with kids – the works. For example this website claims to have 100 recipes for kids
So go ahead browse and get more ideas.
Q is for Quiet time or Quizzes:
Quiet Time is a foreign concept but both Moms and kids can reflect from this near meditative state. When you make a timetable chalk out just 10 or 15 minutes of quiet time. This can be used to recalibrate oneself for the rest of the day.
Quizzes: There are numerous quizzes available online. Else get you children to create one for their grandmother or sibling. Video it and share it with us online.
R is for Reading:
I cannot stress the importance of reading enough. Today a reader tomorrow a leader rings so true. Get you children to inculcate the love of reading and they will never be bored. Nudge them to explore new titles and share their findings via a call or email with their friends. They will always have a hobby, and this is a great tool to use at quiet time.Amar Chitra Katha and Tinkle are offering their entire catalog free, till March 31st to help with social distancing. For the younger kids among your network. Please share. Here are the links:
Amar Chitra Katha: bit.ly/ACKFree
S is for Scrabble, Sequence and such:
I love board games! Ever since I can remember I loved playing scrabble with my mom and sister. Then I was addicted to an online version on Facebook till they took it down. Tried the app for a bit and couldn’t keep up. However even now whenever we have enough players out comes our Scrabble board. There is also a Junior scrabble version available for the young ones. Sequence is another game I was introduced to about two years ago and I have been obsessed with it. We have riotous fun when our extended family plays this. It can also be played with 2 or 4 people. A recent game I loved is Fletter. Real fun with just two!
S is also for Singing:
Just belt out your favourite numbers and become a social singer instead of a shower singer
S is for Self -Care:
Go on a spa date with your kids. Oil their hair, try out a new face pack! Don’t have one? Google a natural one and you are good to go. Don’t forget to do a patch test for sensitive skin.
T is for Teach:
Moms are the first teachers. There has to be a skill that you want your child to learn. Like sewing a button or answering a phone (an intercom). So go ahead use this time to teach them. You can also teach songs you sang in your childhood and share stories about your family. Since it’s not a classroom ambience your child will be so much more receptive to this.You can teach your children to wash vessels , start with their own steel or melamine plates. Loading and unloading the washing machine
U is for Upcycle:
This is the need of the hour. Remember your hastily put away winter clothes. Or that one almirah you have always wanted to settle. Let’s not forget about lofts. De-clutter now! Sort through stuff and give away anything you have not used in the past 6 months. Make sure you wash your hands thoroughly or bathe after this exercise. You will feel unburdened for sure. Besides what you give away could really be useful to some
V is for Virtual:
In these times of Social distancing we can take our kids on a trip to any place in the world. Agreed it may not be as fun. But why not make it fun! Dress as though you were actually going out, make sandwiches and bottle lemonade. And go one a virtual tour. Here’s a link to do an online virtual tour of Museums around the world. Wow !
Here is a link to some of the most beautiful gardens world over:
V is also for Video calls:
Since we can’t visit people, we can do Video calls to stay in touch. I know especially grandparents love these calls. They can actually go on for a long time catching up
W is for Wikipedia :
Who needs those heavy cumbersome Encyclopedias when you have Wikipedia. A wealth of Information and in most instances, you can contribute to the pages as well.Head on over to Wikipedia and find out details about any or many topics
X is for Xcercise:
Yes a play on the letter here! Exercise is super important. It actually ensures you are fitter to fight any viruses that are around. Besides Corona , the seasons change always leads to a slew of coughs, colds and virals. Head out for a walk, do some stretches at home and get your children to join in
Y is for Yoga:
Yoga is actually India’s gift to the world and it’s discouraging how little we practice. Simple asanas are available in the form of videos and children who are supple can actually do them much better than us. It’s never too late to start so get googling and say your Om’s
Z is for Zero Waste:
I cannot stress the utmost importance of teaching our future generation about Zero waste and sustainability. Please inculcate no plastic and recycling habits in your children at as young an age as possible. Ensure they take bucket baths and not showers. A clean plate is always good. Use a washable face mask when necessary. Avoid packaged snacks, the inside nor outside is not great for you. Earmark companies that have a zero waste policy and favour them.
Hope this ready reckoner helps you in the days ahead. Please find below the links as promised.
“Most young kids will remember how their
family home felt during the coronavirus panic
more than anything specific about the virus .
Our kids are watching us and learning about
how to respond to stress and uncertainty.
Let’s wire our kids for resilience, not panic.”