Saturday, November 20, 2010

The Necklace

I broke Veda's plate today by accident. In her three - year old world, it was a tragedy of epic proportions. Ignoring my apologies, she asked if I could repair it. When informed that it was past repairing, she picked up the broken pieces, disposed it herself and then teared up. Feeling like a murderous brute, I told her it was an accident and the damaged property would be replaced asap. But she was inconsolable.

An emergency phone call was made to her Dad and she sobbed her eyes out to him, while he played the superhero to her currently not - so - super- mom. Finally she was somewhat appeased after he promised to buy her a pink plate with Nemo on it or something of the sort and tons of chocolates besides. Hubby hung up but not before letting me know that his position as her favorite parent (highly questionable) had been strengthened. Veda let me off the hook after a solelmn lecture about the importance of being careful (I knew it by heart since I was the one who usually delivered it).

Having been tried and found guilty without a fair trial (my motives had not been taken into consideration, after all it was an accident and I did not do it on purpose), I felt terrible. It was time for damage control.

I told her that she could bunk her yoga class and spend the evening with me. She was not very enthused at first. But when she saw the items I had gathered for our fun evening - candles, matches, a bowl of water, needle and thread, gold sequins, and silver flowers, she was all fired up.

And so we made a necklace with gold sequins, silver flowers,and wax. Craft work is not exactly my forte and I do clumsy work but thankfully Veda did not notice. When I punctured my index finger for the hundreth time and drew blood, I had to listen to her "Be careful" lecture for the second time that evening.

All in all, minor mishaps and lack of craftmanship notwithstanding, the evening was a success. Veda loved her necklace and showed it off to everyone. I was told to keep it "carefully" in her cupboard. All was well again in her world. And mine.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Simple Stuff Parents Can Do To Keep Their Kids Safe

For the past few days, the papers have been full of the Coimbatore kidnap and murder case. Muskan(10) and Ritish(7) were kidnapped by a van driver who had worked in their school and his accomplice. No ransom demands were made though that must have been the original idea. The children were simply drowned in the PAP canal. There have also been reports of abuse. This horrible case has shocked the nation and I find myself dwelling on it often. Could not get to sleep one night so I looked up some basic safety tips for kids on the internet and thought I'd share the ones that seemed the most practical and useful.

Teach Safety not Fear: I don't want my children to grow up frightened so I like this concept. Just give them basic information and tell them there are 'bad people' out there. But there is no reason for them not to go out and play provided they follow some rules. My kids are really small so I tell my three year old that she can NEVER go out of the house alone and she must be accompanied at all times by one or more of the people expressly suggested by me (servants are not on my list of 'safe' people for her to go out with.)

Be Involved: It is nice to keep abreast of your kid's activities just so you know what is happening with your child. Take some time out to talk with your lil one everyday and listen to their fears even if it is imagined and even if you are soo stressed out it is ridiculous (This is my early new year resolution). Veda went through a phase when she was scared of Gorillas and needed a lot of reassurance. The point is you need to become their go - to person in times of need. And it is never too early to lay the foundation for that.

If your child is attending school talk to the staff about whom your child should be released to other than yourself. I usually make it a point to pick up Veda myself but if I can't make it, I call the school to let them know who to expect.

Never Leave your Child Unattended: At least in the early stages, kids need constant supervision. Now this is extremely hard to implement, cos it is nigh impossible to be that vigilant. But parents should make an attempt to know where their child is and what he/she is upto at all times. I like to make my kids wear anklets with bells on them. That way I am literally attuned to them. If I cannot hear the bells and they are not sleeping its time to check. Smart huh?

Hope readers find my tips helpful. Good luck to all over anxious parents out there!