Monday, January 13, 2020

Of Course I Get Angry, And Here's How I Fight My Inner Demons

I'm just another regular human after all, so how can I not get angry? Of course I do, and for those who never realized, I'm one of those extremely short-tempered ones, whose anger can get triggered off by the smallest of things.

There's a reason a lot of people don't know that about me, and that's because I have made a really difficult but big effort to control my temper, and channel it out in a different space.

In the context of this blog, my temper would hit the roof every day, hundreds of times, especially after the second one, as the poor thing was suffering from massive colic pains. And, at the cost of sounding like an insensitive woman, I must admit that I was not at all equipped to handle that. I did have some support at home, but let's just say that things were very difficult, the expectations were too high to be able to match when I too was healing and even as I hated the person I saw in the mirror each day. Too many demons and insecurities were pulling me apart, and it wasn't a time I was proud of.

Then one day, I did something I still haven't forgiven myself for - I let my younger one cry it out, even as I sat and got angry. Ashamed about my behaviour to this day of course.

Till then, I had never really felt the anger in me come out so bad, and in a way that could touch someone who was helpless in the face of it.

I swore to myself that this would be the end of my anger getting the best of me. Of course it isn't magic, I can't stop being angry just like that, but I could definitely manage how it came out and how I reacted.

So what did I do that was so different that helped me then, and helps me even now to better manage my temper and make sure it doesn't affect the girls?

The first step I took was to head out for a walk....
You may call me an escapist, and I guess I am, for I am one of those who just does not like confrontations and will do anything to avoid it all costs. Also, I know that when I am upset or angry, I am at my worst with words, and words pour out that I have no control over. Not the best scenario to defuse the situation then.
So, the next best thing that I could do was to instead head out for a walk.

And maybe, that was what started out my journey towards better health. Each time I would feel that anger coming on, could be due to anyone or any reason, I would try and plug in my playlist and head out for a walk.

There's something just so magical about the free air around me, especially at night, with the moon shining it's silver on me, that makes me feel comforted, loved, understood and embraced. And when you feel all of these, it's a little difficult to stay angry for too long.

In the start, I would spend about 20 to 30 minutes walking, sometimes fast, then slow, then fast again, till I could feel myself getting drained, and the anger draining off with the sweat. By the time I would come back home, the anger would be gone and I would be myself again.

Gradually, this became a habit - not the anger I mean, but the walk! :)

And there I was, someone who couldn't walk even a kilometre without really getting breathless, to walking up to 4 or 5 kilometres with ease.

Today, I walk 10 kms each night, without stopping for a break or water, and usually complete it withing an hour and a half....

The next step - being honest about my feelings
We all think it's easy to fool our little ones, that they won't know, that we are the grown-ups, the smarter ones.
But did you ever give this a thought - what if they always realize what's going on, what we are up to, and just because they don't show it, we end up believing they don't understand anything, and in the process, make a fool of ourselves instead.... ever thought about it?

Our little ones are way smarter than us, and than we were at their age. Sounds like bachpan mein suni hui baat, at least to me it does, but I know it's true in my case. For instance, I still struggle with the many Google documents I have to work on, while the kids find it easy. I am a dumbo at all gadget related things, while for kids, these are toys!!!!

So, one thing I was sure of was that no matter what, if I tell my children to be honest and true to themselves and to others, I too had to be just the same. And that honesty also means being honest about my feelings, about telling them when I am upset or angry and need some space or time to cool off.

And it's fine, trust me. Rather than blasting out at them, directing your anger at someone who does not deserve that treatment, you simply ask for a little time out. If nothing else works, I go inside the bathroom, close the door, and splash my face or head with cool water. Always works for me. And while I'm there, I sometimes also add a dash of lipstick to cheer myself up :) what's the harm ;)

Fighting my inner demons without damaging anyone else is a constant work in progress. I am still at that stage where I have to learn a lot, I have to deal with a lot of issues that haven't been the best, and that I know will keep stressing me out.

But hey, one life, one beautiful lovely life, and definitely not worth it giving it all up to anger. So, while for me, anger is a real and recurring feeling, there's a lot of positive ways to bid adieu to it too......

For all your anger moments, I am already sending out a lot of hugs and positive vibes for whenever you need them.... smile more, love yourself a little more, and tell yourself you are special, coz you are.... and yes, tell it more often to those around you too, who are your world :)


- Debolina Raja

And like I always believe in and say:
'Heal the world we live in
Save it for our children' - MJ

 Happy Parenting!!!!

- Debolina Raja

Friday, January 3, 2020

How This Inclusion Band is Bringing More Positive Changes

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A post shared by Debolina Raja (@debolinaraja) on

If you live in India, or if you follow what's going on in India, you may have heard about this very important issue that has divided and brought out the country on the streets like this in a long time.

I am not going to get into any debate or agenda here, but yes, I do want to talk about one thing that has turned out to be a positive from all this that's going on.

The awareness that it is giving our kids, whether the younger ones or the young adults, and, whatever their point of view, the courage and the self-confidence to assert it to themselves, and to others.

Of course I have my own views that I go by, and yes, they are really quite simple. For me, it's just about being human and embracing others the same way, without caging in anyone in any form of pigeon hole, whether it's a captivity box of gender, race, religion, money power, caste or any other limitation for that matter.

I do not follow any religion, and I am happy to see that this attitude is being passed on in a very normal and healthy way. This also means that I respect others' choices and wishes, but then again, I am clear about not letting anyone else cloud my choices. No doubt then that my band has already got some tiny followers, who very well understand the concept and want to wear it proudly too :)  Could I be happier??!!!  :D

Recently, I got myself an Inclusion band...

If you haven't heard about it, it's a band that talks about the basic concept of being open and welcoming and including everyone in your heart the same way, without being biased. It's a simple way of showing myself that yes, I have this one beautiful life, and I want to live it with as much positivity and happiness as I can, and on the way, I want to spread love, warmth and care to others too, irrespective of any social colour or bias.

The beauty of these bands is that they are upcycled, which means that they are all made out of discarded items and are re-used to make something that is better in quality. And I can bet about the quality for sure, as I have been wearing mine for quite some time, and am already on the way to get myself a few more. Also, I have shared this with a few friends who, too, have got themselves their bands.

These inclusion bands are available on a very quirky-named site called Salt Scout and you can check them out here.

The proceeds from these are used to support those with intellectual disabilities. I think it's a really beautiful way of wearing something pretty, while you also help someone else in some manner, no matter how small.

By wearing this band, you essentially represent the idea that you have space in your heart for everyone, irrespective of any bias. For these particular Inclusion Bands, the Jai Vakeel Foundation (India's oldest and largest Not For Profit that works for intellectual disability) has partnered with The Chanakya School of Craft to create these beautiful bands. And yes, these are handmade by women, giving them a source of respectable income - by wearing these bands, you automatically show off your preferences in style, while also helping someone become independent, and in some way help another someone who needs some assistance in the intellectual space.

If you would like to see how you can make a difference, see this video of the kids you can help :)

If you have reached till here, let me just say this is not a sponsored video, and all that I have shared here is what I felt and what I believe is a beautiful way to spread more love and positive vibes in this world..

In case you feel the same, head over to the website and check it out for yourself.

Till then, take very good care of yourself, and those who are yours or around :)

- Debolina Raja

#values and #education #nobias #onelife #inclusion #inclusionbands #love #respect #humanity

********************************************** And like I always believe in and say: 'Heal the world we live in Save it for our children' - MJ Happy Parenting!!!! Debolina Raja

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Scolding does not mean discipline, sometimes, love can do that too

Yesterday I was sitting at a busy food court in a mall, with every possible space occupied and packed as far as I could see.

I considered myself lucky enough to have found a space for myself and my girls.

As we sat down, thinking what we could have that would not involve waiting in too-long queues, the younger one opened her bag and took out her handy notepad and paper. Soon, she was lost to us, and was absorbed in her own world, writing, looking around and capturing on paper what she saw.

The older one, like me, already had a book to take care of any such free time that came upon her, and she was soon inside her book too.

As I was looking in my bag to take out my book (yes, I always have at least one or two books with me wherever I go, who knows when the need arises!!!), I heard a soft voice next to me, addressing me quietly.

I turned to see the voice coming from the lady sitting at the next table. She asked me if the girls were mine, and I said yes.

Then, she immediately jumped to the next question - "Do you never scold them? Or shout at them?"

Okay, so just as weird as it sounded writing it out here, the same expression came on my face, and I looked at her with a smile and said 'No, I don't really need to scold them, I don't do that."

She was surprised.

She pointed to a girl, aged about four, who was absolutely out of control, running and bumping into people, climbing on tables, and on others' tables too, trying to touch their food, pulling at others' clothes, all in all, doing all those 'naughty' things in public places that put parents in a fix!

She looked back at me and said that was her daughter, and till date, not a day had passed by when she had not scolded, shouted, or hit her, and later spent the entire day in guilt. "I just don't know what to do! I am usually a soft-spoken and quiet person, but she has no discipline! Only hitting her can quiet her down for some time. And she watches 5 to 6 hours of screen a day, and if she does not get it, she screams so much that we end up giving her something to watch. How are you managing your daughters? You didn't say anything, they simply started reading and doing their own thing, and your younger one is almost the same age as mine! How did you do that?"

She was hassled beyond her limits, and the answer that I was about to give her was at a risk of sounding too cliched or simple, but was true no doubt.

"Scolding or hitting is not always the way to create discipline, most of the time, love and appreciation can do that too."

She wanted to know what I meant.

So I told her...

From most of the time I remember, I have made a conscious effort to show my girls how much I love them, how I appreciate their gestures, how proud I am of their good behaviour, I make sure to tell them 100000 times a day that I love them, share free hugs that come without any condition (no bribing or saying things like I love you, but you have to do so and so), and on a regular basis, just keep reminding them how blessed I feel to have them in my life.

But...... when things go wrong, when they behave in a certain way or do things that are not acceptable, they immediately see that huge change in my behaviour.... when I close up, I stop responding and they understand from my body language that I am definitely not happy. And I never tell them that I don't love them, I tell them I am disappointed, that they have made me feel bad.

It works, at least, it has always worked till now...even as my elder one is ready to hit her teens soon!!

I think I can call this a sort of emotional tug, where they know that some behaviours can make me get into a shell, which means they don't have that friend in me for that time... and they hate that....

It's not that difficult actually, and she seemed quite ready to try this out herself..

"What about the reading and doing activities and writing by herself? She is quite young, and you didn't even ask her to do it, how does she do it on her own?"

If any of you have been on my book blog you will know that the answer is super simple :)

I have been reading ever since I remember (thanks to my ma and my nana (my dadun!) and the habit has passed on to both the girls, almost as naturally as living and breathing has come to them.... So it is that, each time we leave the house, me and the girls always have something to read with us, whether it is a trip to the mall or to the restaurant, or even on vacations, small or big..

Our children are incredibly smart, they don't need to be told everything, often, they pick up even the most subtle of hints and it is actually our behaviour that reflects in them.. We shout and scold, they become hyper and aggressive, we spread unconditional love and support, soon it will come easy to them too...

And yes, as long as we really want to be friends with them, they can treat us as their bestest friend and confidante for life!

That's all the gyaan I had to give, and the smile the stranger lady gave me and the way she thanked me was just too sweet and overwhelming! :)

If you are reading this dear lady (sorry I didn't even ask your name), then thank you for making me think of all this again....

- Debolina Raja


And like I always believe in and say:
'Heal the world we live in
Save it for our children' - MJ
Happy Parenting!!!!

- Debolina Raja

Monday, July 9, 2018

Thailand Cave Rescue: Why I am following it and what my kids are talking about

For the past couple of weeks now, the one news that I have religiously been following each day is that of the boys stuck deep inside in the caves at Thailand.

I am not alone.

The world is out there, trying to provide all means of help and support to the Thailand government, so that the young boys, and their coach (who is all of 25 himself) can come out of the caves safely and be reunited with their family and loved ones.

What started off as a day of outdoor exploration and a fun birthday celebration of one of the boys along with friend aged between 11 and 16 and their young assistant coach, has turned a nightmare that the world is keenly watching.

There is so much going on there. Rescue teams have been created from different parts of the world, some of the best divers from around the world are already there, experienced and ready to help at each step, while one of the rescuers, a Navy SEAL, lost his life trying to rescue the boys.

Last heard, 4 of the children from the group have been brought out alive and have been sent to hospital for treatment and medical care. Efforts are on to bring out the remaining boys, which will begin soon.

For now, I have made sure both my kids, aged 4 and 10, are aware of what is going on.

Some of the things they discussed among themselves and with me are:

  • the importance of not going out without informing parents of the exact location
  • the need to learn swimming (my elder one is super comfortable in swimming, while the younger one too has now learnt swimming and can swim on her own, without any need of a float)
  • assessing your surroundings and not going in places that you are not comfortable in (this is something the elder one is speaking about, after she saw the footage and how deep inside the boys were) - she means that she would try and avoid going so inside the cave, and would rather stay out and get wet
Of course we are not aware of the exact reasons that prompted the boys to go so deep into the caves, but can just hope they all come out safe.

For now, my kids seem to be keen on staying safe and understanding the risks around them, so I hope things will get better, for those kids, and for the safety of mine too.

- Debolina Raja 

And like I always believe in and say:
'Heal the world we live in
Save it for our children' - MJ

Happy Parenting!!!!

Debolina Raja

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

For all the mothers out there....

To all you moms out there,

just wanted to say hello,
you all are special
and lovely and wonderful

we are all fighting our own battles
sometimes alone
sometimes hiding it deliberately from others
sometimes with the support of someone we trust
but mainly,
doing it on our own

but amidst all of that,
we're all also trying and constantly working hard
to give the best of ourselves to our darling little ones
to give them the mostest of love and affection and care that we have within us
to muster all our strength and be their strength
to help them move ahead in a world
that is filled with its good and its bad and its beauty
and to make them ready

whatever it is,
whatever battles you are fighting
whatever it takes
whatever it is doing to you
don't give up

find your love and your strength
in your little ones
if not in anything or anyone else
and remember,
to your little one
you are more than perfect can ever be
you are the definition of perfect
you are the definition of love
of care, of home, of strength, of beauty, of hard work, of determination
you are the role model
you are the mother
the ma
you are their world

take care of their ma
take care of you ......

- Debolina Raja

And like I always believe in and say:
'Heal the world we live in
Save it for our children' - MJ

Happy Parenting!!!!

- Debolina Raja

Friday, May 18, 2018

Let your child learn with loads of fun at the British Council Summer Workshop for kids in Mumbai

image source

The summer vacations are on and the heat is on at home too, what with trying to manage the two kids and completing all the work deadlines.

I am really having a challenging time I tell you!

So it was really interesting to see that the British Council has organized a workshop around this time that will be a week long thing.

Of course my older one is excited and she is looking forward to be a part of it, as well as write about it on her blog once the workshop kicks in. You could also take a look at it here on her blog Little Girl Talks To The World

Here's a look at what all British Council says you can expect to have there at the workshop.

This summer, we bring you theme-based workshops for young learners (8-14 years). The two exciting themes for the workshops are, Explorers and Media Magic.  Here’s what children will learn through the themes: 
Explorers: Through a virtual trip around the world, children will learn about different cultures, develop language skills and build confidence through a lesson about one country each day.
Media Magic: Children will explore communication channels such as the radio, television and the internet. They learn how to write blogs, create an advertisement and even explore ways of using the internet (wisely of course!).
All this and more, as they develop specific skills (reading, writing, listening and speaking) and aspects of language (vocabulary and pronunciation) in a fun, secure and learner centric environment.
Age GroupDatesClass timingTheme
8 to 10 years21 to 25 May (Mon - Fri)9 am to 11 am (2 hours each day)Explorers
11 to 12 years21 to 25 May (Mon - Fri)10.30 am to 12.30 am (2 hours each day)Media Magic
13 to 14 years21 to 25 May (Mon - Fri)2 pm to 4 pm (2 hours each day)Media Magic
Fee: INR 5400 for non-members (includes an online library membership) and INR 4000 for library members.
How To Register: Call 0120-4569000/ 0120-6684353 (Monday-Saturday, 09:00-18:00hrs) or send an e-mail to
So that's all the details and what you need to do if you want to enroll your child in the same. I definitely am looking forward to take my kiddo there and let her be a part of it, as she already has her own blog and is interested in such topics.

Registrations close on Sunday, so do hurry.

- Debolina Raja

And like I always believe in and say:
'Heal the world we live in
Save it for our children' - MJ

Happy Parenting!!!!

Debolina Raja

Friday, May 11, 2018

I will love you for one hundred years

My younger one (4) is always telling me how much she loves me and how much she will continue to love me for ever and ever.

Of course there are moments each day almost when she gets upset with me with something or the other, and then she is quick to remind me that she does not love me anymore and is not friends with me anymore. And she makes it a point to show me what a load of cuteness I am missing out on.

She will sulk and pout and walk around the house with her hands folded across her chest, showing me that she is upset, sad or angry, and giving me thousands of signs that I should leave everything and try to make her feel happy again and be friends again.

All the other times that she is in a happy mood, she tells me she loves me and comes up to me and kisses me.

"Mamma, I will always love you. I love you a lot."

"Thank you baby."

"Mamma, I will love you even when I am 5 years old."

"Thank you my doll."

"Mamma, I will love you even when I am 10, 30. 100 years old."

"Ohhh...I love you so much my baby. Thank you..I love you too and will always love you."

"Mamma, I will love you even when I am hundred, thousand, hundredthousand and tenhundredthousand years old."

"Thank you my baby for choosing me as your mamma."

I don't really know how to express how lucky and blessed and loved I feel.

- Debolina Raja

And like I always believe in and say:
'Heal the world we live in
Save it for our children' - MJ

Happy Parenting!!!!

Debolina Raja

Thursday, May 3, 2018

Why letting your children get bored is so good!

It's the start of the vacations and I am in a mess....

How can you even pretend to be all organized and in control and all that blah blah when you have a 4 and a 10 year old in the house the entire day?

With work deadlines to be met on time, delicious healthy and appealing home cooked meals to be prepared and just about 1057573497596497 things to be done, (and mind you, no help for the next few weeks as my sweet help also wants to celebrate her kids' vacation time away from the big city) I can tell you the one secret weapon I found that is helping me take care of that big question all parents face when the kids are home - "How To Keep Them Occupied????"

So without the drumrolls, the simplest answer is:



You read that right...

The art of getting bored is actually an art in these days of over-exposure and too many things to choose from and do... From summer camps that have everything you could ask for for kids, petting farms, nature trails, swimming, dance, art and craft, music, building workshops, exhibitions, plays, movies, sports, theatre and so so much more, when do our kids get a chance to just take some time off and let their mind do the work for them, instead of guiding it on what to do all the time?

So this vacation, I have honestly not engaged them in any activity, except for swimming classes for the younger one as I want her to learn it and then swim fearlessly anywhere.

So all they are doing the entire day is to get really bored, crib, disturb me no end on what they should do (and it is taking a toll on my work of course, but mommy duty calls too), and then, when they don't see any help coming, they let their brains do the work and come out with ideas and things to do.

And it's helping...

Also, they are learning the art of sharing, of taking the initiative and calling up other similar-sized friends and planning on what to do and then organizing it properly as well. So you see, not only is this letting the brain work, it is also helping them get more social, be vocal and learn to plan.

Also, in case you were wondering, these are scientific reasons why getting bored is good for the brain:

  • Makes you more creative
  • Helps you become productive
  • Allows you to plan and set goals
  • Helps you think and take time out, which helps you stress less (did you know that children and even toddlers can be boggled with stress?)
  • Makes you happier
  • Gives you the opportunity to find out new areas of interest and hobby
So all you parents out there, if you too are at home with the kids, let them get bored...they'll be happier :) 

- Debolina Raja 

And like I always believe in and say: 'Heal the world we live in Save it for our children' - MJ Happy Parenting!!!! Debolina Raja

Thursday, April 12, 2018

And yet another reason I cherish being a mommy

There are countless reasons of course, there are the good ones, the bad ones, and then those that are absolutely unbearable for the time being (!) that make me feel why I got into this craziness of becoming a mom, that too twice!

But then again, I think my babies know what I go through sometimes in my head, so they come up with these amazing things that make me feel so loved and special that I can't see myself as anything else but first a mommy.

Like yesterday, when I was a bit low and telling my daughters how I feel I am not the best mom and sometimes feel like I don't do enough for them, my 10 year old quickly grabbed my hand and gave me a hug and said "Ma, you are the best and most amazing and fun and funky ma I have ever seen. Trust me, I can never ask for a different ma, you are always doing so much for all of us, without resting or taking care of yourself first, but you always think of us first. You should be proud of yourself ma, I am."

I didn't have enough words to thank her......I mean, really, what can you say when your child tells you that you are a nice parent?

And then today, my 4 year old told me that no matter how big she becomes, 100 years, 200 years or whatever years old (yes, that's a lot of years I know), she will still always be my daughter and still always ask me to put her to sleep and still always be with me because she loves me so much.

Life is blessed, I am truly thankful to be the mommy to these two...couldn't have or ever can ask for more.

- Debolina Raja

********************************************** And like I always believe in and say: 'Heal the world we live in Save it for our children' - MJ Happy Parenting!!!! Debolina Raja

Friday, March 16, 2018

There are countless reasons to #CelebrateYourChild and all it takes is a moment to spot and nurture it

It's been almost a year I haven't come back here and really there couldn't have been a better way to come back to this parenting nook of mine than to share this beautiful campaign called #CelebrateYourChild that has been taken up by Mindseed, a pre-school chain.

In an effort to find out if parents really know their own child, Mindseed  asked the children to make something for their parents and invited the parents to come and see what each child had made for them.

The twist?

The parents had to walk through a display of the art and craft work and guess which one was made by their child. Superb!


The parents picked up the things they thought their kids had made and explained why they thought so. A very interesting thing that came out was that most parents found their child's work by focusing what their child was lacking in and needed improvement on - "my child always colours outside the lines" "my child always writes this letter in a mirror way" and so on.

And now it was turn for the children to walk in.

When they did, and actually identified the work that was theirs, the parents were left speechless. In an effort to focus on what their kids can't do and how to help them improve, they forgot to see what the children were really good at and what creativity and potential they have.

The idea behind this entire campaign is that while it is important to help and encourage your child to do better, it is also very, if not more, important to actually celebrate them for who they are.

If you haven't seen their campaign yet, here's a look.

I loved the message, and let me just say that I am proud of myself as a parent, for celebrating my kids everyday for who they are, and for encouraging them to reach for their dreams instead of just giving in to the so-called 'standards' and boxes that society creates for them.

Thank you Mindseed and lovely campaign!

- Debolina Raja

And like I always believe in and say:
'Heal the world we live in
Save it for our children' - MJ

Happy Parenting!!!!

Debolina Raja

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Create Personalized Picture Memories Using Photojaanic India

I love adorning my home with pictures of my children, so when the team at Photojaanic contacted me to try out their product, it was quite difficult to say no to them.

The brand was launched in the year 2013, before which they were already partnering with Kodak to help customers create beautiful images in print. The idea behind the brand is to help their customers tell their stories through personalized print products.

While they have two very interesting concepts - photobooks and wall art - I chose to go for a wall mount print.

One of the very first reasons was that I already have a lot of images in the house, but most of them are framed. And there are quite a few images that I would love to see as a mounted piece instead of a framed one. Hence I thought it would be a nice way to try out their features and see what my kids had to say about it.

Needless to say, I wanted to surprise my kids, so had not mentioned anything to them. So when the big package arrived, they were obviously very excited to see what it contained. And when I took out the print and put it up on the wall, the smiles and the shouts of happiness was simply worth getting that print done from Photojaanic.

The print size that I ordered was 11 X 14 and there are a host of other size options you can choose from. Also, I went for the full image style in portrait as I wanted to have the image take up the entire space and not add any borders or designs.

The site has a range of edit options that you can easily use to create your very own custom photobooks as well as custom kids photobooks.

I am extremely happy with the finished product, which comes with a glossy effect. The mounted print is very light in weight, and as it comes with a wall mount hook, it is very easy to put it up on the wall. The borders are thick and neat, and there is a seamless flow in the image and the frame.

In fact, we loved it so much that very soon we will order a new batch of images again. It's super easy to use and takes barely a few minutes to create your own custom image art piece. These steps will help you do just that, if you are looking for the mounted art option, once you have chosen which images you want to create using Photojaanic.

  1. Login to the website
  2. Select 'Product' 'Mounted Prints' 'Select Size' - I chose the size 11 X 14
  3. Click 'Get Started'
  4. Choose a style for the mounted print - I chose the 'Full Image' style
  5. Click in the center and you will see 'Choose Photo' option on the left hand side with options to select and upload your image.
  6. The image will appear in the template. You can use various edit tools on the right hand side, such as 'Filter' 'Border' 'Text' and so on to further use your creativity and customize the image
  7. Click 'Preview' and check your final image. You can further edit if required, else 'Add to cart' and checkout
That's all the steps that you need to create these beautiful photo stories for your home. I would definitely suggest you try them out, and also use these as gifting options for friends and family. 

- Debolina Raja


And like I always believe in and say:
'Heal the world we live in
Save it for our children' - MJ

Happy Parenting!!!!

Debolina Raja

Thursday, April 6, 2017

The Road to Responsibility: A Resource Guide for Teen Drivers and Their Parents #GuestPost

The Comprehensive Guide on SR22

One of the biggest concerns that most parents of preteens and teens have is related to driving. While as parents we often talk to our kids about the importance of safe driving and never driving under the influence of alcohol, many incidents still take place, often leading to tragic results.

Some time back, I received a mail from another concerned and responsible writer/researcher, asking if I would like to share some resources on the same. Here is a very educative and easy to understand resource that you can go through as a parent, and can also share with your young child or teen to make them understand the importance of safe driving and ways to ensure they are not in any form of danger while being on the road.

Here's a look at the same.....

The Road to Responsibility: A Resource Guide for Teen Drivers and Their Parents

For most teens, learning to drive is their way of making a major leap towards adulthood. This rite of passage is exciting for teens, but scary for parents. There is good news, though. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), in the past decade, drunk driving fatalities in people under the age of 21, per a population of 100,000 people, has decreased by 49 percent.
In 1982, when the NHTSA started tracking statistics relating to drunk driving, the number of fatal crashes involving drivers under 21 was at a record high of 80 percent or 5,215 teens, compared to 10 percent or 1,021 teens in 2015.
Although the numbers look positive, there are some sobering statistics, too. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), every single day, six teens die in a car accident, but the saddest news of all is that there are many ways these accidents could have been prevented.

Crash Prevention Awareness: Understanding the Risk Factors

- Debolina Raja

And like I always believe in and say: 
'Heal the world we live in 
Save it for our children' - MJ 

Happy Parenting!!!! 

Debolina Raja

Friday, March 24, 2017

Cute Kids Clothes From Pinkalicious #FirstLook My Thoughts

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Some time back, about a month or so ago, I was contacted by the team of a kids' clothing brand called Pinkalicious.

While I do a lot of clothing reviews, lookbooks and hauls for myself, I am very wary when it comes to clothes for my kids. In many instances, the material or fabric is not that good as it seems on the images, or the fit may not be good, and many brands do not give enough importance to small details such as the accessories used, the zips and buttons used and so on,

I told the team my concern and they were quick to inform me that I would not be unhappy. Also, they were very specific in understanding my kids' age and specifics, so that they could send me the clothes accordingly.

When I went on to their social media page, I saw a lot of styles that were really eye-catching. One of the things I needed to go by was the colour, as both my daughters are only always obsessed with the colour pink. But I also wanted to deviate a bit and experiment.

So the team suggested a few designs, and here is what I absolutely loved by the first look itself.

This is what I absolutely loved for my 3 year old. It is a little long in length, but I can still make her wear it and the best part is that it will last her a long time. The pinks and reds, along with the golden makes it for a gorgeous party dress, great for parties and weddings.

Again, my elder one does not have many non-pink clothes, and this gorgeous bright yellow tee was just perfect for a 9 year old. Also, the fact that it has a really gorgeous pink stone encrusted crown on it made it super cool.

The fabric is really soft, which is not the case in most party dresses. I am not really sure what it is but it is something that my daughter was happy to wear, it did not irritate her skin.

The zari at the border of the dress matches the one on the dupatta. Also, I am happy that it is stitched in such a way that it will not directly touch my child's skin, and not make her itchy.

The lining is made of cotton, which protects the material from directly touching the skin and does not cause any itching. This is always one of the first things I check when I am buying any fancy clothes for my kids. So this is a HUGE PLUS for me.

The zipper detail is also very good and sturdy.

The fabric of the tee is breathable, and my daughter has already started wearing it, waiting for a special occasion was too much for her :) I soooo love this crown detail. And for a change, she looooved the yellow colour!

The collar of the tee has a bright print fabric in the inner lining, which adds a lovely contrast to the overall look. I like the idea of these small yet important details.

Here are all the details you will need to get in touch with them.

The team also sent along these super cute accessories to go along with the younger one's red and pink dress, and I can't say how much she loves wearing them and feeling like a princess :)

Fun Fact About The Brand

The idea behind Pinkalicious was the dire need of a mother to find an exclusive dress for her daughter's 5th birthday party! From 1 dress and design, it soon turned into multiples!!

Today, the brand is up to work on any style and design that you want to specifically create for your little princess or prince.

You can shop for their designs at FirstCry and Little Muffet

- Debolina Raja

And like I always believe in and say:
'Heal the world we live in
Save it for our children' - MJ

Happy Parenting!!!!

Debolina Raja

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Come, Imagine Discover And Learn At Koco Kids, The New PreSchool And Play Area In Mumbai

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‘Koco Kids - Imagine. Discover. Learn’ is a Preschool and Play area that has just opened at Santacruz (West), Mumbai.

Focused on providing a loving and enriching atmosphere to help your child achieve their maximum potential, this is the first of its kind Preschool & Play Area with the largest indoor and outdoor play area. At Koco Kids, you will discover tailored programs that have been thoughtfully designed for your child’s precious early years. Working closely with parents through a happy, fun and unhurried atmosphere, the group helps develop an interest in learning with fun.

Koco Kids promises a one of its kind concept which combines constructive outdoor play with a state of the art soft play and indoor play area. A place where kids of all age groups can climb, jump swing and run under one roof. Along with that there will be extra-curricular activities which will be open to all, for the complete growth of the child.

In Conversation With Co-Owner of Koco Kids, The New PreSchool And Play Area Launched In Mumbai

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Most preschools and kindergarten institutes these days are offering a hands-on learning approach, so how is Koco Kids different?

Koco Kids is different because of our curriculum, our facilitators, our equipment and our overall ethos. We are extremely focused on what is developmentally and psychologically appropriate for children and have created an environment that promotes imagination, play and discovery as a medium to achieve learning. Everything from the color of our walls to the size of our blocks has been chosen considering the appropriateness for little children and how it can contribute to creating a developmentally sound environment. Our curriculum is a beautiful blend of marquee preschool educators like Madam Montessori, Reggio and Waldorf, with a healthy dose of play. We have borrowed the best from each school of teaching, modified it to make it relevant to life skills needed in today's times and thus created a unique method of teaching. We believe in letting children grow at their own pace, bringing out the uniqueness in every child and inculcating a lifelong love for learning.

Unlike other schools, we don't expect such small children to sit still at a place and listen to us. We encourage them to stay active and involved and thus our children move rooms every half an hour. Each classroom is thematic and focuses on developing a specific learning skill eg. - one room is dedicated to fine motor skills development, one to music and dance, one to art, creativity, and cognitive skills. Each day has the child moving every half hour thus catering to every kind of learner (visual, auditory, kinesthetic) , maintaining novelty and making children bold enough to adjust to a new setting quickly and easily
2. In a country that gives so much stress on learning from books from an early age, how do you encourage parents to adopt the learning through experiencing concept, rather than the learning by rote?

At this tender age we want to hone a child's imagination, develop life skills and an undying love for learning, Our curriculum is a guideline that enables teachers to steer the class in different directions based on what may interest the child since every question, every observation made by a child is an attempt to learn, and must be encouraged rather than drowned in the practice of following a rigid lesson plan.

Monday, December 26, 2016

Baby Care Products From MamaEarth: Review And Why I Would Recommend It

Some time back I was contacted by the wonderful young parents Varun and Ghazal, who told me about a new product line they were coming up with. The brand in question is MamaEarth. 

Being young parents themselves, they understand the importance of using only the best products for our little ones. While there are tons of brands out there in the market that claim to be the best for our babies, we all know that most of these are marketing gimmicks, and some big brands have also faced the flack for containing carcinogenic compounds that can cause cancer.

In one of my earlier posts I had talked about 10 cancerous chemicals we end up exposing our babies to unknowingly.

The reason I was interested in trying out the MamaEarth products for my kids was because they are Asia's first MadeSafe Certified Brand. If you are not aware of what that means, do check this link here to know more.

I received this super cute bag that came with some of their most useful products. The bag is very thoughtfully made as it will let me carry all my baby's things safely, and in style of course :)

Here's a look at all the wonderful products and the links from where you can buy them.

About The Products

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

10 Cancerous Chemicals You Are Exposing Your Baby To (Through Baby Products)

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I am always passionate about products that are natural and herbal, use zero chemicals and are naturally healthy for me and my babies. I am always reading up about what's good and what's definitely not good about products and ingredients, and in this quest to know more, I have realized that what we many times take for granted, in terms of brand consciousness, just doesn't work right.

For instance, a certain very famous baby brand was recently embroiled in a huge controversy when it was found that one of their products contained carcinogenic substances, or to put it simply, contained elements that could cause or increase the chances of cancer. Why would a baby brand, or any brand for that matter, do that? I was not really using their products, but after this entire thing and after the brand themselves apologised and confessed, there is not one product from them that I have in my home, or will let my kids use.

I was never in the habit of turning over product bottles to read the ingredients until my first one came along. Any product that is launched with those babylicious ads and is packaged in cute bottles may not necessarily be the best thing for your baby. In most cases, it may conceal harmful toxins that can really play with the health of your child. Did you know that infants up to the age of 2 are 10 times more vulnerable to carcinogenic chemicals than adults. Children accumulate up to 50% of their lifetime cancer risk by their second birthday. Horrifying, isn’t it? 

So what do you do when you are not sure what's really right for your baby and what's not? You check the labels, and find out all about the harmful toxins that lurk there. And if you're not really sure yet, here's a quick look at 10 of the most dangerous chemicals that are found in baby products, and how they can harm your precious little one:

10 Harmful Toxins To Watch Out For In Baby Products

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

No Time Table - Why I Chose To Set My Kids Free Of Restrictions And How It Helps Them Learn More

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I've always been kind of the odd mom out (not to say I'm odd in a lot of ways, and this isn't a surprise that I'm odd here too), and over and over again, I've been perceived as different from other moms, and I know that I behave that way as well.

But I do not regret it one bit. The biggest reason for my being happy about the kind of mom I am is that I can see for real that my kids are happy, healthy and fine, that they live with a smile and cry with their heart, that they can feel and understand their emotions, and those of others around them, and that they are good human beings, essentially.

I have always maintained that I do not want to restrict my kids in the many time tables set by society. And that involves the time-tables and set patterns created by school, society, family, friends, relatives, neighbours and everyone else out there. I do not believe that confirming to set patterns is what makes you successful, but I do believe that finding your heart's voice and following it is what makes you that person you really would want to be, and also be happy about it.

For the past few days, there has been an intense activity in the mommy groups of my kids's classmates, the topic being which kid studies how long each day and how much they all know. Let me state that these kids are 3 and 9 years of age, it is a time when their childhood is barely beginning, it is at that stage when it is budding, when it is time for their childhood, their dreams and their talents to be nurtured and honed. At least that is what I believe.

I gave up on everyday sit down and study for so and so hours concept long back. For my elder one, it is more of a learning through everyday activities and experiences. Of course it is important to follow certain patterns, such as studying for that test and knowing you have the answers and understand the topic, or being on time for that class submission. All of that is important.

But more than that, it is also important to have an open mind and free access to learning, as opposed to sitting down in one place and studying.

So, for instance, my elder one is a fan of various international culinary shows, and knows about a host of ingredients, cooking styles and global cuisine that I do not have any idea about. Of course she won't learn this by just reading a book. She wouldn't know how to crush that spice, or how to smell a particular herb and know if it is fresh and if it will make the best garnish. When she reads a menu, she knows exactly what she wants and what and how to order - and she is 9.

My younger one knows all about alphabets, numbers, colours, days of the week, month, shapes, poems, basic manners, etiquette, how to greet people and a host of other 'how to's' - and she is 3.

And I am happy. And I am proud. That all their learning is coming out of their own choice. That all they want to learn is out there, and that I am able to give them access to spread their wings and learn, instead of tying them down to one place and simply study.

The elder one wants to become a lot of things when she grows up, a painter, a writer, a storyteller, a pottery artist, a fashion designer, a chef, and so much more. And I am gonna be absolutely happy with whatever she chooses.

The younger one is too young to fall into this trap of worrying about 20 years down the line scenario right now. And I don't want to impress anything on her either.

Life isn't about just mugging up and learning to do your calculations and reciting some lines and memorizing dates and formula. I don't know what you think, but I think that life is a little and a lot more than that. It is about seeing rather than looking, of dreaming rather than just wishing, of fighting it out rather than giving up, of believing rather than criticizing, of trying rather than crying, of living rather than just surviving.....

And I promise, if I am not able to leave back anything else, I will still leave behind that glimmer of hope and dreams in my children's eyes, and inspire them from somewhere of never giving up on life, dreams, love and's all so worth it.

- Debolina Raja

And like I always believe in and say: 'Heal the world we live in Save it for our children' - MJ Happy Parenting!!!! Debolina Raja

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Our First Flintobox 3-4 Years: First Look And Details On How To Subscribe

Some weeks back I was contacted by this very sweet person called Hariharan from Flintobox. The mail came in good time, as I happened to see some digital ad about the same around that time, but I had no idea what it was about.

So when I asked more about the concept, I realized that it is a super fun monthly subscription box that aims at making education and learning extremely interesting and fun. Of course there are various activities and offers from different brands that have come up with creative boxes for kids, but in this day of subscription boxes, Flintobox did manage to come up with something unique and really interesting.

I couldn't share it earlier but now with the long weekends here, finally managed to open it up and the squeals of delight and the jumps my younger one made around the house was too much to not get excited along with :)

So before I show you what all this month's Flintobox came up with, here are the age groups you can go for:

  • 2-3 years
  • 3-4 years
  • 4-8 years
  • 8-10 years
  • 10-12 years

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Are We Turning Our Babies Into Monsters?
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Over the past few days, it's really saddened me to read the paper here in India. I have consciously stopped watching news channels for a long time now, the reason, I'm sure, most of us already know, but let me just say, with news hour turning into a free-for-all barbarian show, I just didn't want to go through the same every single day.

Two extremely violent recent incidents, both involving teens, is what prompted me to write this today. I am sure many of you may find it useless, or disturbing, and if so, please click the exit button and move on...I have no problem with that...If you choose to read on, thank you.

The first incident that shook me up was the senseless killing of a 17 year old boy from a simple and well-educated middle class family in Navi Mumbai. The teen had formed a friendship with a teen girl from his class, and the friendship had developed into a relationship. As is prone in teen years, both really liked each others' company and that was pretty much what was happening - they were just special to each other. The problem that apparently led to his killing was the fact that the girl belonged to a higher caste. And this is the year 2016 we are talking about, and in a city in Navi Mumbai, which is considered Mumbai's satellite city and houses some of the best minds here. I can imagine how 50 years from now, when people talk about such incidents in the year 2016, it will make them firm of the view that people living in the year 2016 were indeed backward and barbarian - I do not disagree right now.....

So what happened here was that the girl's family threatened the boy and his family and the parents asked the boy to stop meeting the girl. He was beaten up as well. When the boy's parents went to the police to lodge a complaint, the police officials present in the police station told him to mend his ways, and asked the parents to keep a watch on their son. They went a step further to tell him that now that he dared to continue meeting the girl, he should expect something similar to the phenomenally applauded Marathi movie Sairat, which is about a lower caste boy falling in love with a higher class girl, and how both are killed by the higher caste family as part of an honour killing. The teen boy's parents requested the police for help but were sent back home. The girl's family came to their place, dragged them to the road and started hitting the boy severely. The parents tried to intervene but were assaulted as well. In fact, the attackers started shouting 'chor chor' and passersby actually thought the scared family were thieves, even as the teen lay bleeding profusely. By the time the parents finally managed to take him to a hospital, he was lost to them forever.....

Sad.....what else do I have left to say here? I can't even say I can imagine the pain they are in... no, I can't, nor can you....

The second incident co-incidentally happened the same week in Calcutta. A young teen boy, Abesh, was part of a group of teens that was enjoying a relaxed party in a parking lot of a posh Calcutta residence. He was 'suddenly' found lying in the parking lot in a pool of blood, even as almost all the other teens suddenly vanished, and only two remained who helped a resident of the building take the boy to the hospital. By then again, it was too late, and the boy was lost to his mother forever (his father, who was part of the police force himself and had also assisted eminent filmmaker Satyajit Ray's son on movie assignments had just passed away this February). Before leaving home, the teen had told his grandma he would be home latest by evening....his mother never heard from him after that day.....

Of course you would guess that since there were about 10-15 teens at the party, someone, at least one teen, would have seen something, or, as we all do these days, recorded something on a smart phone...maybe, maybe not....Or, given the fact that the teen, Abesh, was stabbed multiple times with a sharp glass object (broken beer bottle), and had also walked around in the parking lot after being stabbed (as was evident from the blood trail that was left behind), some resident would have heard some commotion, breaking of glass, hitting, voices fighting, voices trying to break up the fight, someone crying out in pain (can you imagine a teen who is being stabbed multiple times will not cry out in pain?) or someone asking for help.....I am sure some of the girls and maybe some boy(s) in the group may have shouted out in fear at what happened......And even though quite a lot of the apartments apparently have their windows right above the parking area where this happened, it is possible that at least someone heard something....

But no evidence was found.....not surprising....why?

The murdered teen had recently become friends with a girl who was earlier in a relationship with a boy who comes from a very affluent and influential family in Kolkata. Both the teen boys knew each other and were often part of same parties and groups. In fact, some common friends had mentioned earlier how the two boys always were uncomfortable with each other. The influential boy's father had in fact asked the girl's parents to keep her away from the murdered teen, and asked the murdered teen's mother to keep her son away from the girl.....interesting?

Then again, even as the news channels first reported that it was a clear case of murder, the news was abruptly changed and the story was turned to accidental death...Apparently, the teen who died was holding beer bottles under his arm, and he was already drunk, so he tripped and fell, and the bottle broke, and cut all his important arteries and veins, and he lay bleeding there, even as his friends possibly wondered what to do...this is the version that the news channels and police later came up with....

why? What happened that everyone had to suddenly change their version? what happened that the teen from the affluent family and his father both suddenly disappeared? how was it that no friends came out and gave exact details about what really happened?

I have seen the CCTV footage from the parking lot where a teen is seen falling down, but from a simple height which is a little walled structure on the ground floor - and hello, he trips and falls on his back, while most of the injuries are on the front.......

I can understand that the parents of the children who were involved in this entire thing may have asked their kids to stay away, fearing it would traumatise them and affect them negatively. But what about the mother who lost her only son? Can you imagine her pain? I can't. I understand that we, as parents, always try to shield our babies from everything that is not good and want to keep them protected forever. We tell our little ones - CLOSE YOUR EYES AND THE MONSTER WILL GO AWAY...

But for how long? Till what age do we baby our babies? Till when do we shield them from responsibilities that come of growing up? It has to happen at some age, right? What age is that? What do we teach our teens? Hide and stay mum when a mum loses her baby, but you stay mum and stay safe.....that's what we should do, right? wrong...

Wrong wrong wrong....... something is wrong with us, parents...something is really wrong with us.... and it's we, the parents, who are in the wrong, and not the kids...coz it's we, the parents, who are turning our babies into monsters.....yes we are.....unfortunate but true...

- Debolina Raja

And like I always believe in and say:
'Heal the world we live in
Save it for our children' - MJ

Happy Parenting!!!! Debolina Raja


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