Saturday, August 20, 2016

Stranger Danger

Manya has been learning about stranger danger for a couple of weeks now at her martial arts class. Prior to this, during our trip earlier this year to India for my brother's wedding, Vish and I had been talking to her about being aware of strangers and especially in public places sticking to only mommy or daddy etc etc.

It is very difficult to explain the concept of stranger danger to a three year old - you have to keep that delicate balance between keeping their faith in humanity and all the goodness there is in the world and at the same time cautioning them to the ills without going into details. A curious and communicative child like Manya just adds to the complexity.

Also, sadly it says something about the world we live in if we cannot let our children trust our fellow home sapiens without any fear.

Here are some conversations we have been having...

"Mommy how does a bad stranger look?"

"Why would anyone want to hurt me?"

"Would a stranger try to hurt me even if I am friendly and nice to him or her?"

We are currently at this understanding: Most strangers are good. However, there are a few bad ones out there who can hurt you, so it is good to be cautious around all strangers because by looking at someone you can't really say whether they are good or bad. It is okay to exchange common courtesy or pleasantry with strangers but no other conversation without a parent or a safe grown up (teacher, family, friend). There are certain "safe" strangers who can help especially if parents are known safe grown-up is not around - police, firefighters, paramedics, doctors.

Phew, things were much simpler when we were growing up!

Friday, August 12, 2016

Of love and marriage...

Parenting note: Nobody makes more interesting conversations than a preschooler!!
Out of the blue, at breakfast...
M: Mommy I have decided I will marry you and daddy.
Me (hardly surprised - the things she says these days have lowered the shock factor): Why do you want to marry us?
M: Because I love you guys so much / you are my true love. And I want to stay with you forever!
Me: Manya children don't have to marry their parents - you can stay with us always.
M: But you left nana and Nani when you got married - I don't want to leave you so I'll just get married to you guys!
Me: (she gets mean and sarcastic even in a compliment, no?) Are you sure?
M: yes, really! Let's all three of us get married!
Me: Alright!
P.S. Somebody take out the stamp paper - I want her signatures on it and maybe a wooden sign with her words engraved to hang in her room during teenage!

Sunday, August 7, 2016

Beachy Summers

Without an iota of doubt, we are convinced we have a water baby! M can spend all day at the beach or any water body for that matter and not get bored at all. I love the sand and water too so together all three of us have been exploring the Pacific Northwest Wonder, aka, Oregon. We have kept a close radius to Portland and yet have not been disappointed. The Oregon coast is undoubtedly beautiful but so are the innumerable rivers, streams, lakes and waterfalls in and around Portland. Our third summer here and most weekends all that we do is hunt for a new water hole and set out! We are really falling hard for Portland and here are some snapshots to convince you too...

To Manya,

"When you do dance, I wish you
A wave o' th' sea, that you might ever do
Nothing but that."