Archive for April, 2012

Parallel Play


All children love to play. They also tend to outgrow their toys very easily and quickly. So when my son goes to his friends’ houses (or vice versa), he enjoys the new (meaning different from his) toys that he gets to play with. And then at this young age of 2 & 3 years, kids aren’t great social beings. In the attempt to teach our kids sharing, we (my friends and I) try to get our kids to play together as much as possible. And it mostly works much to us moms’ relief! 🙂 Occassionally, there’s some screaming and snatching too – am sure all moms agree. 😉

This time my friend and I decided to leave our sons in the play room, on their own. We just carried on with our chit-chat and waited for that inevitable scream. But guess what? About half an hour passed and we had heard no such noise from the room and went to check on them. And what did we see? Our sons were playing quietly by themselves without bothering the other. Na na, not playing with each other. They were playing alone but knew what the other was doing.

Every couple of minutes, one would turn around and see if the other was in the room and then continue with his own game. If one of them left the room, the other would follow a minute later check out what’s happening and then come back to his toy in the room.

It was so nice to see them this way. Parallel play at its best and we mothers felt so good to see them like this. 🙂 Now we’ve decided, we shall get our kids together in a room full of toys and just let them be – they’ll figure out a way to make their time better and maybe, eventually, they’ll start playing with each other. A parent can only hope! 🙂

Fun Dough with Kids


My nearly 2 year old loves to make things with Play Dough. This is wonderful, yes, and it also helps bring out my son’s creative abilities. At the same time, I am also (no, was) worried that he would eat the dough and all such things. Was because, I discovered this lovely recipe to make my very own edible (not for eating per se but not to worry if it does reach your child’s throat) fun dough for my son. And he helps me make it too! 🙂

So let me share this one with you – believe me, it is as good as the one we get outside, non-toxic with various edible colours and cheap as well! All this with our regular kitchen ingredients – some plain flour, cooking oil, salt, cream of tartar and of course water, so here goes:

Take 2 cups of plain flour without any rising agents, 1 tablespoon of cooking oil, ½ cup of salt and 1 tablespoon cream of tartar. Mix well with a wooden spoon and then slowly add 2 cups of water into the mixture avoiding lumps. Heat a saucepan with 1 tablespoon of water on medium heat, add the mixture into the pan and stir it until it thickens. You will know it is ready when it is no longer sticky.

The prepared dough will be colourless but you can add various ingredients (a pinch or few drops) to the water you mix when making the dough and get different colours! Like; a pinch of turmeric will give you yellow, adding smooth spinach paste will give you green, saffron will give orange, soya sauce will give a black colour, barbecue sauce will give a brown shade and then you can just experiment – as long as you don’t put red chilli powder for a red colour! 😉 Various food colours are edible and can give a large variety of colours to the dough.

Let the prepared dough cool and then watch your child get creative! 🙂 Just remember, the dough dries faster than the readymade one so store it in an airtight box in the fridge. If it gets dry you can add a few drops of warm water to soften the dough.

My son loves this dough as his mom is not trying to stop him from putting it in the dough. It also cleans off faster from the surfaces. So a win-win all the way! Enjoy!! 🙂 🙂

Changing Era of Play


Memories are still crystal clear when I was surrounded with wooden toys, some with wooden hoops and some making hilarious noise while running. Yes, I am talking about my childhood, an era which was not equipped with modern toys, they were not electronically operated nor had flashing lights or remote to control/run them.  However, they still helped me play, learn, grow and understand the world around me. I would rather say, they helped me discover emotional, relational, intellectual and spiritual senses and grow strong, mentally and physically both.

During my childhood, toys were selected by my parents to engage & keep me busy but today, parent are more cautious and select toys for their kids keeping holistic development in mind. Technology has added advantage to that and have replaced everything including toys – Games like Angry birds, electronic books, DVDs, transformers, dinosaurs and electronic toys etc.

However, whatever form toys have taken, their purpose and love remains the same!

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