what is best for my child?

for my baby

Recently, I was reading an article; a blog in fact. It has an extensive survey report on health drinks! The very popular ‘Bournvita’ ‘Horlicks’ and ‘Complan’ were researched for their stated claims and their true value! The author and the family have used/consumed the above for a certain time frame, observed the results and made the statistical analysis. For the readers who are interested in that data, numbers and equations the site is www.kidsandparent.comFor the result keen parents like me, Complan was voted as the best health drink, followed by Horlicks. And much to my joy (I simply am against Bournvita) Bournvita was at the bottom of the list. All the claims they make in the advertisements are untrue. The DHA component and the advantages it supposedly has are needlessly escalated. Horlicks with the Barley in it is a better health drink. This is for the entire conscious mother’s fraternity; any other research you want to get covered or survey results you are in search of, it is good to go through the blog and put up the requisite queries. The survey currently inline is baby food brands and the best a mother can offer the baby, like Pediasure and Cerelac, Farex etc.

That article set me thinking as to what I gave my kids at that age. Memory digging revealed that with my first born, I was in the exact state of mind that most mothers seemed on that site! I went through identical doubt pangs and used to question everything in an earnest attempt to do my best for my kid. This net research was unheard of in India then and wise aunts’ tips, grandparents’ wisdom, mother-in-laws: “we did this and not this!”, mother’s consolation or Doctor’s advice were our only knowledge banks! I did what all of them said in bits and pieces and suffered a fair share too because of this! My first born is still very susceptible to all infections and viruses! His immunity levels are severely beaten and he is sick at the drop of a hat. By the time I had my second baby; I was experienced and also determined not to make the same mistakes that I made with the first one! Tinned/ canned food and Powder milk never entered my house. Even feeding bottles lasted barely 2 months or so. I can count my visits to the doctor, apart for the regular immunization shots; I went twice in the first year and maybe 3-4 times in the following four years. I had to go almost every month for my first born.

I, personally, am of the feeling that mother’s milk is the best for the infant, as many times as the baby wishes to feed. Secondly, start cereals and grains soups, boiled vegetable blends as far as possible. Keep Pediasure etc only as the last resort. This is your best chance to make minimal visits to the Pediatricians! Natural food is the best immunization for the child. With luck, you can also escape the woes of weaning the kid away from bottle and graduating to sipper and bribing the baby through colorful glasses, flavored drinks just to get the toddler to have a glassful of milk (You save a lot of money, time and effort! Believe me).

Once the energetic bundle reaches five years of age, it is inconsequential which health drink you choose. He/ she may drink milk as it is and in case you have to make a choice do choose the best, to be on the safer side! Raising a healthy child is honestly pretty economical still. Ask the mothers from rural India.

This is the mother of all surveys conclusion:-). Parents can always go and check elsewhere for better options and cross check whether they have made the right choice or not!

my babies

The slim -chubby pair
The slim -chubby pair

sweet and savory

Egg less cake

Again a two minute recipe:-) (not exactly two minute but REAL SIMPLE AND EASY) and kind of impossible to go wrong. Is tasty and can be eaten semi cooked and Over cooked too!!!!

ingredients:

1-1/2 cup flour(maida)

1 cup fresh cream

1 cup castor sugar

1/2 tsp- baking powder

1 tsp soda bi carb

1 tsp vanilla essence

method:

Sieve the flour , baking powder and baking soda together.

mix/blend sugar powder and fresh cream till a smooth paste is formed.

add this sieved flour and mix/ blend again. add essence.

bake in a regular oven for 15-20 minutes.

Try this one first and if this comes out well you can go on experimenting with added flavors.

keep the consistency of the batter same and add all the flavors/ colours you wish to add!!!

yummy yumming:-)

love health and blessings always

Milkmaid fudge

Absolutely instant, impossible to go wrong and even if such a calamity does occur, delicious and yummy anyway!!! noway you can  resist this:-)

Ingredients: 1- tin milkmaid (condensed sweetened milk)

1 cup- dry fruits, preferably, cashews or walnuts(chopped)

1-cup sugar

1-cup white butter, unsalted.

1-cup cocoa powder

method: simply add ALL the ingredients to a non stick pan. cook on slow flame till about 20 minutes or less. when the chocolate starts to leaves the ends of the pan , your chocolate is ready. smear a plate with butter and spread this mix to the greased plate. cut squares when semi hot itself. chocolate is ready!!

a word of caution, stir the mixture regularly so that it does not stick to the bottom and burn.

enjoy:-)

love and blessings ever

manchurian, indian style

ingredients and method: for machurian balls

vegetable- cabbage, onion, carrot. more of cabbage and 1 carrot, 2 onions.

add ginger garlic paste a bit of garam masala powder and salt to taste. white pepper if it is available

make balls  with the above veg mix  add a table spoon corn flour as binding agent, a 2 table spoons white fine flour  and deep fry . keep aside.

for sauce:

olive oil for shallow frying, capsicum- 1no cut to 8-10 pieces, spring onions-a cupful chopped. carrot – diced about 7-10 .

shallow fry the above vegetables in olive oil. add a tea spoon of soya sauce , a table spoon of tomato chilli sauce and and plain tomato sauce.  add some water  with a tea spoon of corn flour for a thick consistency. boil for 3-5 minutes. add the above balls and garnish with parsley.

 

manchurian balls with noodles.

manchurian balls and noodles.
manchurian balls and noodles.

making ribbon murukku (savory)

ingredients:

refined oil to deep fry– may need about 250 gms.

rice flour-2cups

Bengal gram flour-1cup

unsalted white butter- 3 tbspoons

salt to taste. chilli powder to taste.  A pinch of asitofeoda and one teaspoon cumin seeds

method:

Mix the above ingredients to make a smooth dough. The mould cast is available in the market.

This dough needs to be put into the mould and dep fried in the oil. the oil in the pan needs to be just right hot.The test is to put a wee bit of the dough and see that it rise instatntly. then you can deep fry to a nice light brown color and the yummy savory is rrady to eat.

They come out crisp and biscuity in texture and need to be stored in air tight containers.

Self-Awareness

what is discipline?

The simple dictionary meaning of this word is “a set or system of rules and regulations.” and “punishment inflicted by way of correction and training.”

Both the meanings look grim and unhappy, don’t they? The meanings imply that you must behave, else be prepared for punishment. That is what discipline is all about. Is this really what being disciplined means?

We often hear our parents saying ‘don’t do this!!’ ‘Don’t go there’

‘Do this, or  …’ why is it always a string of no, no, no and no’s only?

Then how will the child know? What is to be done really? Think and understand the right and wrong? The child has already a rule book in front of him/ her. So the scope of exploring and of learning and thinking and experimenting are gone. He / she have to be disciplined, follow the rule. Else be punished by the elders. And in return what the older child may end up doing? Putting the same rule book under the younger sibling and behave exactly the way the parents behave!!!

What are we teaching the child here, in the name of discipline?My MASTER said” Punishment and the fear of being punished are the tools for bringing about this odd form of discipline.

“If you do not do as I say, you will get a beating”

“If you do not follow the commands of GOD, you will go to hell”

But, as we are told what NOT to do, and not what to do, we become pregnant with guilt.

How to overcome this weakness? How to unite this life while it is still living? Unite it with the ideal? No answer!!”

We are full of fear of doing the wrong and not being able to live up to the expectations of the rule book, we are too burdened and cannot think about what it was that we really should be doing?

It is but human to break rules, when they are forced upon us in the form of restrictions and prohibitions. It is seen everywhere. If a child is beaten to behave nicely to the younger, he will in his turn give it on to someone else—more likely to his younger sister or brother.

Instead of being given the freedom to make mistakes, learn from them, correct them and out grow them, we force this disciplinary stuff on ourselves. We dare not cross the lines for the fear of unknown and so we remain a coward and ignorant than ever before.

Rules made for army and institutions are very different from the rules imposed on us in our day to day life. Rules are not meant to rob us of ourselves. They are meant to help us understand the self better. And if we know what to do, and how to do, then mistakes and rule breaking may not occur at all. When things are forced and work against our will, rule breaking and indiscipline tend to occur. Else rules are not needed at all.

Now we are clueless about what to do –they do not give the slightest suggestion of how to evolve into that state where the principles of GOD are followed by heart.

What could have been a blooming openness towards a life of simple righteousness has become a closed – up jail of fear and supposition.

My Master voiced this with concern “Discipline has become a matter of sinning in secret, while keeping a suspicious eye on your neighbor. I believe that this negative approach to life is much deeper rooted in our hearts than we normally think.”How to be disciplined or rather lead simple life without having to worry about rule making and rule breaking? Is it possible that we are told what to do, instead of being told what not to do?

It is better if we punish ourselves for a wrong (according to us) done by our progeny, instead of inflicting punishment on the children? How to make the child grow without fear?

Discipline has unfortunately become synonymous with fear; it should have been the synonym for freedom. Discipline is meant to free us from everything.  We become regular, simple, goal oriented, focused and successful in life with discipline.