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annaprashan, babies, Babycare, babyled weaning, Uncategorized

All You Need to Know About Toddler Nutrition- Priya Kathpal

We thank Priya Kathpal,  Founder Nutrify for this article.

Priya is a Nutritionist with over 15 years of experience. She works with health and fitness enthusiasts, people with medical conditions like diabetes, PCOS, hypothyroid and other lifestyle disorders, sportspeople and children. I happened to attend one of Priya’s workshop and that is where I could get all the insights for this article. 

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Uncategorized

Plant Propagation – Dos and Don’ts and Much More

Gardening is one of the most fulfilling hobbies, but often people get demotivated by the exorbitant prices at the nursery. I don’t know anyone who doesn’t love plants. Some are able to manage them others are not, but there isn’t a soul who says that I dislike plants

P.C. pexels-mentatdgt

Sometimes we may not know the right ways to keep those exotic, expensive plants we bought looking at pinterest or someone’s pretty Instagram feed  and we eventually may just kill those plants and vow never to indulge in gardening. 

In this post I have shared some ways that you can propagate a few plants from your existing ones and points to keep in mind when you get new plants home. 

Plants and greenery at home brings joy to one’s heart and tending to them is therapeutic, isn’t it? For me the best shopping is plant shopping, and I have done the mistake of spending many thousands on plants.

Check out this post on Homedecor

Few things you can do to add to your plant family.

  1. Propagate from existing plants (best option during current times)
  2. Get cuttings/pups from friends
  3. Get cuttings/pups from society gardens, public parks.
  4. Join plant swap groups in your locality.

Some ways you can propagate the plants- cuttings, root division or pups

Propagating plants from cuttings is very easy, you just need to snip off a stem with a few (3-4) leaves. Most plants can just be put in the soil and they root in few weeks, you may put them in water too for you to be able to see the root growth.

Use clean shears and cut just below a node (that’s where new roots will form). You can use rooting powder or honey to promote root growth.

Some sturdy plants that will easily grow from stem cuttings- Coleus, Monstera, Pothos, Aglonema, zz plant.

Some plants like Spider plants, Snake plants, Aloevera and Succulents grow well from either off-shoots or pups or both. Let the baby plants (off shoots grow a few inches and then carefully separate the baby-plant from mother plant from the roots. These are some very interesting plants when it comes to propagation; they can be propagated from pups, off-shoots and even leaves.

Points to consider while propagating-

  1. Ensure that you are taking the cutting from a healthy mother plant
  2. When propagating, a cutting with buds or flowers should be avoided as the chances of survival of such a cutting get low.
  3. Do not keep your cuttings in direct sunlight.
  4. Ensure that the soil is moist (neither wet nor dry, just moist)
  5. Preferably use soil-less potting mix (it is a mix of peat, coco coir, perlite and slow releasing fertilizer) Soil-less potting mix reduces the chances of rotting in cuttings.

Here are a few things you can do while getting new plants from the nursery.

  • Check the leaves, avoid plants with (unhealthy) yellow or brown or discolored  leaves.
  • Check for pests. check the plant thoroughly under the leaves, stem and top 1-2 inches of soil for pests.
  • If you are getting a flowering plant, get the ones with lots of buds rather than ones with lots of flowers.
  • See if you have similar conditions (at home) as required for that plant. Some plants need bright sunlight some can thrive in low lights.

Re-pot the plant only after a few weeks to avoid any shock or discomfort to the plant.

last but not the least –  Once you get any plant from outside (friends, nursery or as a gift) ISOLATE the plant! Yes, you must quarantine the plant for at least 10-14 days. Yes, you read it right! It is best suggested to put the plants away to avoid the pests from spreading from new plants to the existing ones.

If you found my post helpful you may like this Post on gardening too

Happy Gardening!

 


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Tips for Aspiring bloggers & Influencers – My 100th Blogpost

Happy as can be, that’s what I am, after all I am publishing my 100th blogpost!!!

After a lot of deliberation, I decided to write about something that I had wanted to write but was either forgetting or just procrastinating all these months. In this blog I will share a bit about my blogging journey and some tips to fellow bloggers and for those who are just starting out.

Why I started writing here?

As a little kid and a teenager I loved writing and expressing myself through written words, however as I stepped into a professional degree course and then into job my writing only got limited to a few poems a year.

It was finally when my son was a few months old, some friends who saw me sharing motherhood tips, tricks and struggles on facebook asked me to document it on a blog. I liked the idea and decided to take a leap. Continue Reading

health, Lifestyle and health, Uncategorized

Ayurveda for Improving Immunity during Covid-19

Image by Seksak Kerdkanno from Pixabay

Ayurveda is an ancient Indian system of medicine, which is in practice from more than 5000 years. It is a holistic system of  medicine which includes mind-body-spirit approach in healing the person. The holistic concepts do not try to fix the body but instead help super-charge the body’s inbuilt healing capacity. In this article we will share simple tips that can help in improving immunity for covid-19P.C unsplash.com.

Owing to its effectiveness and medical significance, now the principles and the concept of Ayurveda are being used in the modern world. It helps treat different kinds of chronic diseases and even at this time when the world is dealing with this unprecedented crisis in the form of Covid-19, Ayurveda can prove to be a boon for mankind.

Ever since the origin of the new strain of Corona virus, we have come to know a lot about it; we now know the symptoms, the complications, yet we have not been successful in finding out an effective treatment to curb its outbreak. We can prevent ourselves from getting infected by simply following simple rules like wearing a mask, practising proper social distancing and following good hand hygiene.

Apart from this, your body’s natural immune system also plays a major role in keeping us safe from this fatal virus.  The best way to boost your immunity is by eating healthy food and following a good lifestyle habit.

Prevention is always better than cure. As there is no medicine or vaccination for  COVID-19 yet, the best thing at the moment is to take preventive measures which boost our immunity.  Ayurveda’s extensive knowledge has always been based on preventive care. Following some home made concoctions or making slight changes to our daily routines and eating habits can help us keep Covid-19 at bay. Sharing below an immunity booster Ayurvedic drink that you can add to your diet for strengthening your natural defence system.

You may like my other article on homeopathy, homeopathy for children  

The Ministry of AYUSH has also recommended the following self-care guidelines as preventive  measures and boosting immunity. These are all supported by Ayurvedic literature and scientific publications.

Below are the recommended Measures: Continue Reading

Lifestyle and health, Uncategorized

Seven Easy Mango Recipes To Try This Season

Mangoes are here and I’m sure we are all having them to our heart’s content.

Every year summer time brings back childhood memories, when we eagerly waited for the mangoes of our Dussheri Mango tree to ripen. Mango is every child’s favorite and just like me now my son loves them too.

While all fruits are great source of essential minerals, vitamins and fibers, Mango is known as the king of all. It may not be the healthiest of fruits owing to the calories, but it is rich in antioxidants, vitamin C and A. It is therefore perfect for boosting your immunity especially during current times.

Mango can be relished as it is and if you are bored of mangoes and wondering what to do with the dozens of mangoes you have got, then here are some easy yet, interesting things to make with Mangoes. Try these 7 Simple recipes in 7 days of the week.

  1. Ice cream

Summers are best celebrated with Ice creams and what more when you can make your favorite mango flavored ice cream at home with readily available ingredients – Mango, Milk and sugar.

Take 2 cups of mango chunks, 2 cups of milk (reduce it to half) and add sugar as per your liking. Additionally for flavor you can add vanilla essence or powdered green cardamom.

Blend everything together, freeze for 4-5 hours, take out of the freezer, let it thaw a bit, blend again and refreeze in next  hours your mango ice cream will be ready.

  1. Lassi or smoothie-

Who doesn’t like cool Lassi, be it plain or flavoured. Lassi is one of the most popular summer drink in India and now is enjoyed world over, what better than to combine it with mango.

Here is my smoothie recipe, you can make changes (reduce milk quantity) to it to make Lassi.

Chop 2 ripe medium sized Mangoes. Take 1 cup curd and 1.5 cups milk and Sugar/honey, Jaggery powder to your taste.  You may take green cardamom powder for flavor and chopped dry fruits

Blend all ingredients until you get a smooth paste like consistency. Add chopped dryfruits and serve chilled.

  1. Milkshake

This is the most common and easiest of mango preparations.

All you need is Mango, milk and sugar to taste.

Take 2 large mangoes (peeled and chopped) and 1.5 glass of milk, add sugar to taste. Blend all the ingredients and your Mango shake is ready.

Add crushed dry fruits and green cardamom for enhanced flavor. You could add a scoop of vanilla ice cream too.

  1. Baked yogurt

I absolutely love baked yogurt, I can never have enough of it.

Mango Puree ½ cup, Yogurt/Thick hung curd ½ cup, unsweetened condensed milk  ½ cup, Sugar 2 bsps or to taste and condensed Milk ¼ cupHeat the oven at 350°F

Prepare a Bain-marie (double boiler) for your bowls or dishes.

Mix mango puree and all the ingredients- hung curd, unsweetened condensed milk, sugar, condensed milk and check for sweetness.

Pour the mixture into dessert bowls and keep these bowls in your double boiler, put it in the oven for 10-15 minutes.

Let it cool, refrigerate and serve chilled.

Check Bappa doi OPOS recipe to make similar dish in a pressure cooker.

  1. Aam papad or Mango Fruit leather

Do you love aam papad? Well I do and since childhood. I can gobble one whole pack in one go and so can my child.

I never knew it was as simple as this until I learnt it from a friend’s mom.

All you need is Mangoes, little ghee/oil,  sugar and sunshine.

Blend 4-5 Mangoes into a fine paste, ensure that there are no chunks.

Take a pan and add the mango paste into it, put it on slow flame and keep stirring, gradually add sugar. Let it turn into a thick paste (this will take around 4-5 minutes)

On a plate apply a thin layer of ghee. Pour the mango paste into it spreading evenly. Dab the plate to avoid any bubble formation.

Cover it with a light cloth cover and place it in the sunlight. It will take 2-3 days of good sunlight to get your Aam papad ready.

  1. Mango Sorbet – Here is an easy-peasy recipe for you, if you have children at home they will love you for this, well mine certainly does love me more on days I make his favourite sorbet.

You need water, sugar/honey and of course mangoes.

Chop mangoes lay them in a tray, cover and freeze. Take out after 4-5 hours and blend with little water and honey/sugar. Blend till smooth.

Lay the mango paste in a tray and freeze for another 1 hour. You can add half a lemon and few mint leaves for tangy and refreshing flavor.

  1. Aam Panna with Ripe mangoes- While we cook raw mangoes to make aam panna, this one with ripe mangoes needs no cooking.

What you need-  2 well ripened mangoes, few mint leaves ( 10-15), little chopped coriander, kala namak or table salt ( Himalayan pink salt) gives a different flavour, it also aids digestion, red chilly powder 2 pinch, roasted cumin powder 2-3 pinches, sugar to taste, half a lemon if you prefer it little sweet and sour.

Mix all the ingredients, blend and refrigerate for an hour or two, serve chilled.

Enjoy the mango season till it lasts, experiment with mangoes and let me know your trials, I will try them out too. If you have little ones at home then don’t throw the seed as you can try this activity here.