All posts by Archi

10 Skills Every Homemaker Should Know!

The world is forever letting women know what they can and cannot do. A few years ago, it was – You are meant to take care of the home and kids. And, today, it is, you should be working outside the home to truly contribute. No, it is a choice, both men and women should be given. Happiness and peace come from doing things you like and enjoy. Of course, getting appreciation also matters!

So, if you are a housewife or a househusband, or are planning to be one, here are the 10 Skills you should absolutely know.

  1. Become aware of nutrition – Are you surprised that cooking is not the first! Well, to me, knowing and understanding nutrition is much more important than knowing how to cook. Every person needs to eat 4-5 meals in a day, and you will be the person responsible for preparing these meals. As such, it is necessary for you to know how to make tasty dishes which are nutritious. Get knowledge of proteins, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals, etc. to ensure you are all physically fit.
  2. Learn how to sew – You have to get ready to take on the responsibility of mending torn socks, sewing loose buttons or hems. Keeping your sewing kit ready for an emergency will come in handy for the smooth running of a home, and subduing tempers and tantrums. But, knowing how to stitch a skirt out of a bed-sheet or patching a quilt out of old coats, is a bonus. You can even learn how to knit or tat, to save money and create beautiful, cardigans, scarves, shawls or even tops!
  3. Brush up portfolio management skills – Project managers, rise to program managers and then become portfolio managers. Do you realize what this means? You have to learn the ten commandments of project management, learn how to fit every project into a program and manage them all together under the portfolio – keeping the house and the people living in it together as a happy, wholesome, bunch. People, finance and time management are the most crucial, as are planning, execution, and analysis.
  4. Master arts and crafts – Please do not think this is for school assignments only. You can decorate your home with self-made paintings, or crafts work. If this is not of interest to you, cultivate a hobby. Reading, dancing, writing poetry, video-gaming, there are so many things to choose from.  These are the lifelines of a homemaker, giving you the freedom to express various moods, even if the end result is for your eyes only.
  5. Cultivate deep friendships – You will make many friends in the future, friends of spouses, parents from school, neighbors, and more. And, then there are friendships of your childhood and with cousins or other family members. Learn to call people home, go out for a coffee, or take time out to chat. Remember, you have to learn to love each friend as they will give you social standing, emotional support or tips, and tricks to make your life simple. You too can learn to support them, and that is a trait of a good homemaker, letting people know they can count on you.
  6. Be prepared for stress – Being a homemaker is a relentless job. You can switch off from an office, but you can never say Goodbye to your household duties. The pressure to keep everyone happy, and losing out on things you once considered important is going to happen. It is life, it happens to everybody, and you will be no exception. You have to prepare to take on the stresses of life with deep breathing, laughter, physical exercise and keeping your mind active and positive.
  7. Basic sciences are a necessity – Did you know home science or home economics graduates undergo training in basic sciences? Physics, Chemistry, Botany, Zoology, Economics? This is apart from your basic food & nutrition, textiles, home cleaning, and child development! The basics are necessary to help you understand how an acid will react on a hard floor, or why certain foods will taste better with some ingredients.
  8. Child development is the key – Some homemakers choose the profession because they do not want to leave the kids with strangers. There are many parenting books and sites to help you understand and manage the different stages of your child’s growth. You can learn about their behaviors at every age, how to do CPR, treat illnesses, manage tantrums, entertain their friends ‘correctly’, face bruises. fractures, or even minor electrocution require immediate attention from a doctor. Apart from physical fitness, you also need to know how to challenge the young minds and keep them growing well.
  9. Learn how to drive – Believe me, despite all the public transportation you have, knowing how to drive a car is a necessity for a homemaker. Don’t treat this lightly. Dropping a child to school for a test or to the doctor’s clinic for inoculation is a task will more than likely be your responsibility. You should also know how to ride a bike, skip a rope, play hopscotch, throw a ball – the list is quite endless. These are skills you will use to interact with your kids and have a good time while doing so.
  10. Develop the happiness gene – I know scientific breakthrough still has not discovered the art of human genome interchangeability or enhancement. But, you have to convert your DNA into the happy gene. You have to learn how to remain happy, even when everything in life is going wrong, and days seem like endless minutes of chores. Your positive attitude will rub off on your partner, kids, plants, and the overall environment of your home.

Time will slip through your fingers, when you are preparing meals, looking for keys, driving kids to school, etc. Keep yourself happy, your friends around, and pursue a hobby, and you will enjoy the journey immensely.

Indian Heroes

Two Heroes of India

Two heroes of India,

One vocal

One silent,

One became father

One became PM,

One is our pride

One is our afterthought!

 

Two martyrs of India

One shot

One lost,

One died in a crowd

One in a room alone,

One we celebrate

One we obliviate!

 

Two leaders of India

One worshipped

One forgotten,

One history loves

One history’s footnote,

One we quote

One we ignore!

 

Two Strengths of India

One omnipresent

One overshadowed,

One is Gandhi

One is Shastri,

One we wish Happy Birthday

One we wish, oh you too!!!

 

Blinds, Awnings

Blinds and Awnings for Your Home During the Summer

Jute chiks (traditional blinds of India) were popular additions to Indian homes to battle the onslaught of summers. Jute, as everybody knows, is used for twining and ropes and the fiber from the young shoots was used to create window and door shades from the scorching Indian sun.

Why was Jute popular?

First of all, it was abundantly available, making it an option for the rich and the not-so-rich. The straws were strung together tightly to reduce the effects of the hot, dry and dusty summer in the homes. Palaces had jute curtains hanging from crevices and columns, and there were people tasked to keep sprinkling water onto them. The reason – whatever dry air passed through the curtain, it absorbed moisture, cooling the indoor air temperature. Others sprinkled water themselves, but even without the water, the jute chiks were a barrier against the hot winds. Borders were added and different colors were used to paint the straws to give them a stylish element.

Jute chiks lost their sheen

Even when electricity and fans came, people continued to use jute chiks. With the advent of air conditioners, the role of jute chiks diminished, as people moved to the more ‘cooler’ option. But with power cuts a permanent fixture in nearly every city of India, the air conditioner, just becomes a unit on the wall, which is not even pretty. Temperatures in North Indian cities can reach up to 48 degrees, binding people indoors. Despite the most modern cooling units, and uninterrupted supply of electricity, windows and doors need to be covered.

You need Window Coverings to battle the summer heat

Modern window blinds and awnings play a pivotal role during summers. They disallow intense sun rays to enter through glass windows and doors. They also enhance the style quotient of your interiors and exteriors.

Window blinds are used inside the homes, and when drawn down, they keep the piercing light of the sun from entering your room.

· Blackout Roller Blinds allow you to completely block sun rays, making them ideal for windows that receive more than their fair share of the Indian sun.

· Wooden Venetian Blinds have slats you can tilt to control the rays entering your home.

· You can opt for Honeycomb Blinds, designed to keep cool in summers.

Awnings, on the other hand, are designed for your home exteriors. They are placed on top of windows and doors to protect you from sun, wind, and rain.

· Drop Arm Awnings, Window Awnings, and Fixed Awnings ensure that your windows and doors remain shaded.

· Terrace Awnings, Vertical Awnings, Drop Arm Awnings, and Gazebos are perfect add-ons to your terraces, gardens, and balconies.

Lots of options to choose from

Today, there are the stylish and dazzling array of colors, fabrics, and designs you can add to your home to battle the summers. Express yourself with the choices available. The best part is you do not need to step out in the heat to look at their offerings. Just give them a call and most manufacturers and retailers are willing to send a sales executive to your home with a set of samples.

Raksha Bandhan

WHY DO WE NEED A DAY TO CELEBRATE RAKSHA BANDHAN?

Why do we need a day,
To celebrate a bond so special,
A bond created,
When we were born,.
Even though we live afar.

Over the years,
We have grown,
To think apart,
Raising, and being raised,
By families of our own.

As busy as our lives get,
We remain,
Loyal and loving,
Calling, chatting and caring,
But not every day.

But, there is one day,
Dedicated to us,
In the year,
The day is called,
Raksha Bandhan.

It represents,
The bond of protection,
Which comes to remind us,
“Pray to protect the privilege”
With all our might.,

This is a bond,
My brother,
With your sister,
To be cherished,
Forevermore,

Now is the time to remember,
And to embrace,
The bond that began
When we were born!
Happy #RakshaBandhan!

 

Meeting, Manners, Professionals

The Meeting Manners

Manners and mannerisms define a person, especially in the office space. No manager is averse to the negative impact that bad manners can have on his team and its future. Each manager has an example to set and certain unsaid rules and regulations are accepted as part of a leader’s mannerism, especially while planning and conducting meetings. They ultimately affect the team morale and all the entire team is expected to follow them. Five of the basic manners that every professional leader should have in their armoury while conducting a meeting is discussed here

Be on Time: Time is money, time once lost cannot be regained, etc., etc.; every person has grown up hearing some variation of these proverbs. But, their essentiality is everlasting. The team leader has to be on time and should expect every team member to be on time. There can be no second guesses or laxity regarding this basic manner. Most mannerism experts suggest arriving 5-15 minutes early for a business meeting. Being on time defines you as a responsible person who values his own time and that of others.

Dress Appropriately: Accept the fact that your dress and shoes make an impact. You have to know the written, or guess the unwritten code, and dress accordingly. You may argue it is a business meeting and performance matters, more. You are right, but there is a public image that your company needs to adhere and present. You should portray yourself as capable of meeting those demands. Flamboyancy works only for entertainers and people with the chutzpah to pull it off.

Switch off you Mobile: Meetings are scheduled for face-to-face interactions, therefore, eliminating the need for any phone calls. Attending calls, sending messages or any other disturbance from your mobile phone during meetings is considered rude. Switch off your mobile or keep it on vibrating mode. Don’t even for a moment think that if you are playing or chatting under the table, others at the table will not notice. You will be branded as careless and irresponsible.

Measure your Words: You are in a meeting, not a bar where casual or foul language is acceptable. You will get a chance to be heard so you do not need to either interrupt or shout. At every business meeting, speak softly and measure your words. The best way forward is to be prepared for the meeting, knowing your subject thoroughly and having prepared answers for questions that may arise. This will help you answer sensibly and correctly. Be firm, not aggressive to gain the respect of your peers and seniors.

Listen Attentively: Listening as a mannerism is a trait sadly lacking in many a gentleman and gentlewoman. I use the words gentle because listeners are considered sensitive and more in tune with the mood of the meeting, which is absolutely true. The more you listen, the more you have a chance to observe, learn and understand what the other person is saying. Listening is a skill but it also is a basic mannerism that requires you to let the other person complete sentences and thoughts.

If you are not adhering to even one of the basic mannerisms mentioned above, your reputation, operations and career are both in trouble. These manners are not only demanded of you as a professional but will help you build your personal brand and enhance its value! 

Time, Run, Stay

What’s the Hurry, My Time?

The minutes on my watch,

Don’t fly so fast,

Let my moment

Be a little long.

My past is

Long gone,

Captured in

Words

Images

Moments

Some frozen by you

Some forgotten by me

Yet they remain

Living memories

In the depth of my head.

Even today

In the present

A flash of you

I try to grab

In the lines

Of brows and lips

Of family loved

Friendly winks.

Why do you need

To do a sprinter

All I want

Is a moment or two

To savor a second

For as long

As a minute.

I don’t dread

The future

I await it happily,

But, today,

All I ask,

Why are you like a kite

Cut from its strings

Rushing into

Unknown hands.

Do wait,

Tell me

How come you’re so quick

Where do you run

Why do you run

Can’t you wait.

Let the happy moments

Stay

Forever

Without a thought

Of How restless

Fleeting

You can be!

©A.G.