I Cry, When The Flight Descends

The Ear Pain At The Air Plane:

Ear Pain

Image Credit: Pixabay

My fourth to and fro trip by Flight was to Singapore. I had boarded the flight and got my seat upgraded to Business Class. Had a co-passenger, a writer who had given me some company chatting for a while. He had asked me if I can join him for drinks and was really understandable when I had denied his invite wearing a smile.

Hmm, Namakku Indha Genmathula “Bovonto” Daanu Ezhidhi iruke [Sigh].

Soon after the conversation, I had moved on with my journey in a separate route by snoring and he had enjoyed his drinks until landing. Not sure about the dream I had but I was able to sense my tears rolling down to the chin passing my cheeks. It was a horrible pain in my ear that disturbed my sleep and also made me wake up crying. It was already 6 AM in the morning and the flight was above the sea level.

I still remember the scenic beauty in a bird’s eye view. It was mind-blowing to see the blue sea with smaller islands, cruises, and yachts at the bay of Singapore. But, I was unable to enjoy the moment as my ear pain overridden the outside beauty. I took a strip of orbit chewing gum from my bag and started to chew. The ear pain was so intense which made me chew all the six tablets in one go.

Without much relief from chewing, I had landed safely at Changi Airport teasing my ears with fingers. Found Starbucks and grabbed a cup of coffee assuming anything hot I drink would help me get rid of ear pain. All my assumptions went wrong. The only thing that made me comfortable a bit was the quick nap I had sitting in the lounge.

I am sure there are a lot of people who suffer severe ear pain when they travel by flight. Especially when the flight starts to ascend/descend. This post has got all the information I had gathered via minor researches online and from my own experiences related to ear pain on the flight.

Reason For the Ear Pain At The Time Of Flight Takeoff/Landing:

The human ear is made up of three sections. We would have studied all these when we were in our higher secondary but not even faintly I remember now. The three sections of our ear are,

Outer Ear – The part in the Red-colored square box in the below picture.

Middle Ear – The part in the Blue-colored square box in the below picture.

Inner Ear – The part in the Orange-colored square box in the below picture.

ear pain

Image Credit: Wikipedia

The reason for the ear pain during the flight takeoff/landing is the pressure imbalance. Sudden changes in the air pressure around us are also one reason that leads to ear pain.

Purely My Views:

I also believe that the ear pain has to do with the way how the pilot operates the flight. Sudden altitude drops are one main reason for the pressure imbalances.I hate traveling by Jet/Indigo for this one reason and love Emirates for the same reason.

I also ensure that I do not sit on the seats beside the wings as I had felt ear pain most of the times I chose to sit there.

Information From Ask Doctor K Website

Here’s why it happens. Your ear has three parts: the outer ear (including the ear canal), the middle ear and the inner ear. The eardrum comes between the outer ear and the middle ear. The middle ear is connected to the back of your mouth by a thin canal called the Eustachian tube. Air is constantly moving through the Eustachian tube and into the middle ear. This balances the pressure in the middle ear with that in the inner ear.

Ear barotrauma can occur when one (or both) of two things happen: the Eustachian tube becomes blocked or partially blocked, and the air pressure around you changes suddenly.

Air pressure gets lower at higher altitudes. When a plane takes off, and when it descends for landing, the altitude changes rapidly. While the plane has systems to reduce the sudden changes that occur during takeoff and landing, some still occur.

When a plane’s air pressure changes suddenly, it can create a vacuum in the middle ear that pulls the eardrum inward. This can cause pain and muffle sounds.

Things That Might Help During Ear Pain:

  • Yawning + Swallowing
  • Chewing Gums
  • Forceful Blowing of Air with mouth and nose Closed
  • Suckling (For Infants and for kids of age < 3)
  • Sucking hard candies
  • Decongestant Spray / Pills
  • Ear Plugs

Things That Would Make Ear Pain Worse:

Below mentioned are capable of making your traveling experience worse. Consult a doctor before traveling by flight for a better and smooth landing.

  1. Cold
  2. Sinus
  3. Allergies or Infections related to Ear and Mouth especially.

Things I had Tried So Far To Handle Ear Pain During Flight:

  • Ear Plugs meant for pressure maintenance (a bit expensive on Amazon). Ear plugs for noise cancellation are different.
  • Eating Candies
  • Chewing Gums
  • Yawning + Swallowing
  • Teasing ear with my finger (like how we do if water gets inside the ear) followed by swallowing
  • Drinking water sip by sip for continuous jaw movement
  • Valsalva Maneuver

I had tried all the above mentioned 7 methods. Though most of them clear my ear by creating a pop. I rely majorly on the 6th and 7th approaches. I had tested these methods myself (one approach at a time during my journeys). It took few flight journeys to identify the ones that work for me.

I do the 6th and the 7th approaches mentioned above at the time of Take off and Landing.

Valsalva Maneuver Steps:

ear pain

Image Credit: doctoryg

  1. Close/pinch your nose.
  2. Blow air with the mouth closed. (Like how we blow air into a balloon).
  3. Wait for pop sound inside the ear.

I use to repeat the steps 1 to 3 twice with a gap of five minutes while landing as I find landings more challenging than take-offs.

Note: Valsalva Maneuver is not just for getting rid of ear pain during flight. It has got a lot of other benefits and is in use on various things related to our body.

Caution:

Doing Valsalva Maneuver to get rid of ear pain should be done with caution.

Being hard while doing it may rupture the eardrum. Please do not try for longer duration and be gentle while doing it.

I always request the flight attendants to let me know or wake me up an hour or 30 minutes before the landing. By that way, I ensure that I am well prepared for the landing especially during overseas travel.

Valsalva Maneuver works like a charm for me to win over my ear pain. But, I cannot say that it will work for everyone. In case, if it does not work for you, please do try some other approaches mentioned above or anything you find it.

Some of you might always have a great and smooth flight travel. But, that may not be the case for some of your own family members and to your friends. Do share the information with people whom you know go through a harrowing time due to ear pain while traveling by flight.

I wish you a Safe and Ear Pain-Free Journey. Good Luck.

References:

Chennai – OMR / My City – My Place

OMR – The Road And It’s Commuters:

The IT corridor which acts as a speed zone for the teens and at times plays a role of a water pool for swimmers and nonswimmers. Next to ECR, to drive on this OMR stretch would always be there on everyone’s mind especially when a person buys a bike/car.

OMR

Image Credit: Mohd. Sarfaraz

What’s not there at OMR?

Starting from restaurants to 5-star hotels, automobile showrooms and IT giants this stretch is always a focus zone for small scale and large scale entrepreneurs.

The most happening place for realtors irrespective of how this place looks when it rains heavily. This post is not about the goodies and baddies of this road instead it’s all about the road and it’s commuters.

If You Can Drive In India, You Can Do Drive Anywhere Without Fear:

It is not at all a new thing for me to hear from my friends, colleagues and sometimes unknown co-passengers from different regions saying this sentence.

A Person from Mumbai/Delhi says that if one knows how to drive in their cities, then they can drive or ride the vehicle in any part of the world. This is the same thing which I had heard from a person who hails from Hyderabad/Bangalore and other regions too. If I ask the reason behind what they say, I get a response like this.

With the traffic violations and lack of road sense among some people including the ones who are very well educated a normal commuter’s life has become horrible. So, people get adjusted to every ridiculous thing that happens on the road and sometimes does the same thing that is against traffic rules even after knowing that they are doing a wrong thing. Indians get accustomed to new things very faster. Not just within India but even at other countries, Indians learn to drive quickly because of this trait. I can agree with this answer to some extent.

Not just me. Many of you reading this post might be having the same impression and agree with me. But, if we go a bit deep and see the root of it, I think that this is not something for us to feel proud instead we should feel ashamed irrespective of the region where we are.

Is India Different?

I had been to two different countries. In both the places, the first preference is always given to the Pedestrians and School going kids on road in addition to an emergency vehicle. I strongly believe that is the same thing which we have got too on the rules book of India.

But, do we witness that on our roads often?

I can pick the very familiar Rajiv Gandhi IT Expy (aka) OMR as an example.

Don’t we push a pedestrian, a two-wheeler rider, a four-wheeler rider to a spot where they get scared to death?

Most of us do it knowingly and unknowingly.

– A Pedestrian gets scared because of the people who ride and drives an automobile.

– Two-wheeler riding person gets scared because of the four-wheeler (car) driver and vice-versa.

– A person who drives a car also gets scared because of the heavy vehicles on road.

A Daily Routine At The OMR:

OMR

Image Credit: Wikipedia

One of the busy roads during weekdays where there is no safety for the lives of a user as well as the vehicles. Strictly obeying traffic rules is one side, but the courtesy to fellow users that one needs to have while on road no longer exist here. Even if it exists that will be at the bare minimum percentage according to me.

The Kings/Queens Of OMR:

OMR

Image Credit: Pixabay

I am a user of this IT corridor since 2010.

Everything mentioned below is purely based on what I had seen and found to be bad. I am sure most of the other user’s of this road would also agree to it. The stretch where some people considers themselves as a Kings and Queens of the road.

Forget about the Madras Motor Race Track that is in Irungattukottai where you can have sights of a two-wheeler and a four-wheeler racing. If you would like to see the racing of heavy vehicles like government Buses and Trucks then OMR is the best spot for you to choose.

The Familiar Scenes At The IT Corridor:

Scene – 1: The Bus Drivers

The bus race that happens at OMR between the government bus drivers. I am not sure why do they do it.

OMR

Image Credit: Wikipedia

– It is very clear that their understanding of parallel parking is totally different. They stop the bus at the bus stop in parallel to another already standing bus leaving bare minimum space on the right lane.

– Even if there is a space where a two-wheeler or a four-wheeler rider can pass, some of the bus driving kings ensure that they close that gap so that the entering vehicle’s driver stop their vehicle to avoid getting crushed.

– These Kings are doing a great job in taking the passengers to their destination safely. At the same time, they showcase their driving skills not just on the roads but on the service lanes too.

My Views:

Dear, some of the Govt Bus Drivers & Corporate Bus Drivers – We know that you too get irritated because of hot weather and sitting for long in heavy traffic. But, it would be really awesome if you think about the safety of others who use the same road too.

Scene – 2: The Trucks / Lorry Drivers

OMR

Image Credit: Pixabay

We can say that they are the hidden Health Officials of OMR.

No doubt that they help us by collecting the sewage from our homes on regular basis. But, all their good efforts go in vain as the actions of some of them are really terrible especially on roads like OMR.

We may not see a large number of Trucks on this stretch but that is very well compensated by the sewage water collecting lorries and metro water supplying lorries.

With an unskilled cleaner who signals with their hands even when their vehicle is not gonna take any turns, we can witness the maximum speed of a lorry that too high volume of wastewater in it.

My Views:

Dear, some of the lorry drivers, please remember that you are driving a vehicle carrying heavy loads. Please do drive at the recommended speed. For heaven’s sake, teach the cleaner on when to give hand signals as they confuse the driver behind. Please try to find the difference between each color that glows in a signal pole.

Scene – 3: The Share Auto Drivers

OMR

Image Credit: The Hindu

The Masculine Snakes of OMR.

I think 90 percent of these autos which run on this stretch holds weakened brake shoes and pedals in it. The share auto driver’s (not all of them) liking towards the zebra crossing is stunning. I had hardly seen a share auto that stops on the correct and safe spot to pick and drop its passengers.

They always would either be on top of the Zebra crossing/stop line or before or after the crossing. Even when the signal turns green they will ensure that the vehicles standing behind don’t move until they fill their autos with passengers which really annoys.

I had addressed the share autos as snakes of OMR as it was mostly driven in a zigzag manner. The auto drivers hardly use indicator lights instead scare other users and their vehicles by just hopping into a different lane when least expected.

But, there is one thing to be noted here in all the above mentioned three scenes.

All these drivers are highly skilled. Though they are rash on road we can hardly see them making an accident. But for sure they scare the fellow riders of the road by cutting the lanes, stopping their vehicles all of a sudden without indicating. Some of these activities of the drivers give a bare minimum time frame for the other users of the road to react leading to unwanted gestures and verbals fly in the air.

My Views:

Dear, some of the share auto drivers, we understand that you have minimal scope to view what is behind you on road. When that is the case, please do not jump on to the road like a racing horse.

Scenes – 4 & 5: The Cars And Bike Users Of OMR

OMR

Image Credit: Pixabay

One can find most types of the cars and bikes on this stretch. Starting from old premier Padmini of Fiat to Ferrari and TVS XL super to Kawasaki Ninja’s & Harley Davison’s on this 20.1 Kilometer stretch starting from Madhya Kailash junction in Adyar to Siruseri.

Dear friends, let us admit. Most of us do not follow lane discipline in our own countries, but stick to the lanes and follow the rules of a different country when we are abroad.

Maybe because the punishment is very strong there where one could lose their Driver’s license validity if found guilty. We do have the same rule but we do not mind about it much as we can fly from the spot by handing over a hundred rupee note as a penalty/bribe to the traffic police officials. No speeding tickets here. You may be asked to stop for not wearing a helmet or a seatbelt. But, all that takes is a hundred rupee note to move on.

My Views: 

Dear two-wheeler rider, you will not understand the pain of driving a car until you start to drive your own car.

It is a bit difficult to drive a car in heavy traffic.

You will also see a scene where two-wheelers peeping into the small gap to pass your car even when there is no space. I can vouch for it as I had realized it as soon as I started driving my four-wheeler at Hyderabad.

Please do consider the amount of money a four-wheeler driving person had invested on his/her car. Owning a car is a Liability and not an Asset.

Most of the times, their car is on road because of the bank loan and not because of the full cash payment from their savings.

To see a hanging back/front bumper, broken side view mirrors, dents on the bonnet and side doors will induce great pain in the hearts of the car owners as well as the cab drivers who drive someone else’s vehicle for their living.

I am One Among You:

Saying all the above does not make me a Mr. Perfect. But, I still wanted to share this with everyone and also reiterate myself one thing. We need to ensure our safety as well as others while on road.

I do admit that I drive fast especially when the road is a bit empty. My own people had told me that accompanying me in my scooter/car is like going on a roller coaster.

So, most of us are alike. But, we can try to do smaller good things at least so that it becomes a habit.

For Everyone Including Myself:

  • Allow the pedestrians to pass.

– Maybe they are walking when they are not supposed to but still, please forgive them and allow them to pass.

OMR

Image Credit: TripAdvisor

  • Use the vehicle’s horn wisely.

– Maybe there is no one crossing the road in front but the signal is still in red. Please be patient and help the driver in front to be calm.

– They are also tempted just like you to accelerate but still trying to stick to the rules.

– You need not appreciate but allow them to stay with peace instead of honking.

  • Please stick to the lanes.

– If you need to switch the lanes, please turn on the indicators well ahead.

– Just because you had indicated does not mean that you can jump on to a different lane. By jumping, you are just gonna mess with the users who are already in that lane. Be Courteous.

  • Stop blaming the traffic police officials for taking a bribe.

Do not like them taking money from you? Then do not give them a chance.

– Wear Seatbelts always.
– Do not forget to wear a Helmet.
– Keep your insurance renewed and a copy of the documents handy.

Stay Motivated. Let us be the change that we wish to see in the world.

I Drink The Sour Wine (Apple Cider Vinegar)

Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) – The Favorite Of Hippocrates

Apple Cider Vinegar is not just for cleaning, preserving food and dressing a salad.

The father of modern medicine ‘Hippocrates’ had prescribed and used Apple Cider Vinegar to cure a lot of ailments in his patients.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Image Credit: Pixabay

I am not a patient but I too drink the sour wine 4-5 days in a week. I take 15 ml of Apple Cider Vinegar “The Mother” mixed with around 250 ml of water. I take my regular Thyroid pill first thing in the morning followed by ACV in an hour time gap. Trust me, it does great things in my body.

Why Did I Start To Drink Apple Cider Vinegar?

Apple Cider Vinegar

Image Credit: Pixabay

I came across a thread where it was mentioned that drinking ACV helps on the below.

  1. Reduction of fat around the waistline
  2. Weight Loss
  3. Reduction of abdominal fat

Do you think I need any more reasons?

All these being said, it does not mean that the sour wine only helps on the above mentioned three. It has got a lot more benefits.

It started like this.

I had geared up for a new routine and wanted to detox my body before I start with my Diet schedule. I drank the regular Apple Cider Vinegar which was there at my home. The one that is available in most of the supermarkets around us. The one that was not too reddish & at the same time not too brownish and filtered.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Image Credit: Pixabay

Huh, that smell…

Yeah, the smell more than the taste was gross even after diluting ACV with water. It made me feel like giving up many times. But, that was only until I came to know about the different versions of Apple Cider Vinegar that are available.

Ha Ha Ha… What you had guessed is correct. I was drinking a wrong version of ACV.

Apple Cider Vinegar (Filtered) Vs Apple Cider Vinegar “With The Mother”:

There are two versions of Apple Cider Vinegar in the market.

  1. The one which is raw ” With The Mother“.
  2. The one which is processedThe Filtered“.

Apple Cider Vinegar

If you would like to reap the most benefits, then choosing “With The Mother” version is wise. The ACV “Mother” holds a great number of beneficial bacterias in it. You might find the smell a bit strong just like how I had felt in the beginning but you would get used to it in time.

With the organic version, it is not just the gross smell as it also comes along with the gross appearance due to its sediments. When I saw the benefits, the strong smell of ACV and the sediments did not seem like an issue. I had started with the one shown on the right in the above picture at first but switched to the Mother Version soon which is on the left.

Note: I am not advertising any of these brand names.

How Does Apple Cider Vinegar Work?

Fermented apples have got a chemical named Pectin – a Prebiotic in it.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Image Credit: Pixabay

Prebiotics are nothing but the carbohydrates that our body cannot digest.

Apple Cider Vinegar “With The Mother” is a Prebiotic. It helps in breaking down things better and supply them as a food for the probiotics in our gut.

Probiotics are the good bacterias which we have got in our gut. They are the ones that control the growth of harmful bacterias in our digestive system.

Good bacterias in our gut aid good health. The more good bacterias we have in our gut, the faster would be the digestion process. So, the more unwanted fat gets flushed out from our body, better the chances of us getting slim and lose weight.

Do You Know – Our gut is called as the Second Brain in the Human body.

Remember, Apple Cider Vinegar is not a quickie. You may see the output with reference to weight loss a bit faster in some people and slower on others. It is a process, so accept it.

The Impact Of Apple Cider Vinegar “The Mother” In Me:

I do see few impacts of consuming Apple Cider Vinegar in my body. Though, I am yet to see how awesome it aids on the weight loss I can vouch now for these few.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Image Credit: Pixabay

  • Drinking Apple Cider Vinegar “The Mother” gives me a full feeling. That, in turn, reduces my food cravings and the quantity of my food intake. Hope, you got the point where it leads to with reference to the weight loss.
  • ACV helps me to have regular bowel movements.
  • The sour wine had helped me to get rid of acid reflux and heartburn after heavy meals which were very frequent in my case erstwhile.
  • It is been a few months now since I had experienced intestinal gas getting released from my body.
  • I had no nose blocks and sore throat since I started taking ACV.
  • With reference to my weight loss and reduction in abdominal fat, I am unable to vouch much at this point in time. That’s not because of ACV but because of me skipping my diet routine and gym, lately. I am sure that I will be back with a bang in time to vouch for ACV with weight loss and fat reduction as well. Stay Tuned for the update on this in few months time.

Please do not forget that if you want quick outputs towards weight loss then there are no substitutes to the ones mentioned below. ACV for sure enhances the output with extra benefits.

  1. Good Sleep
  2. Strict and Healthy Diet
  3. Consumption of a good amount of water
  4. Physical Exercise

The Other Benefits:

There is information online saying that Apple Cider Vinegar helps on these too.

  • Premature aging
  • Skin health
  • Dandruff
  • Type 2 Diabetes
  • Triglycerides
  • High Cholesterol
  • Warts
  • Acne and more…
Some people say that Apple Cider Vinegar is not acidic but alkaline whereas other types of vinegar like regular vinegar, white vinegar etc. are majorly Acidic. Not a chemist to confirm but still sharing it as I had seen many people say that in their research papers and case studies.

Good To Know:

  • Apple Cider Vinegar “The Mother” is a power packed syrup. It is in use since many years now. I could not find many details on how ancient it is in India. But, came to know that it was used and in use extensively in the countries Japan and China.

Apple Cider Vinegar

  • Vinegar has a chemical named Polyphenols in it hence got antioxidant and anticancer properties that kill cancer-causing cells in our body.
  • It lowers bad cholesterol that leads to heart-related problems.
  • It is a Disinfectant and it kills the harmful bacteria in our body.

Caution:

  • Please do not jump on to consume Apple Cider Vinegar without discussing with your doctor in case if you are already under some medications.

Who Me?

I hopped on it just like that. And, I am drinking it since four months. I have not come across any negative effects so far and I am on my second bottle now. Hopefully, I won’t experience any negative effects down the line too.

  • If you are not under any medications related to major ailments, try it for a week and stop it if you find it uncomfortable.
  • Please do not try to drink ACV without diluting it with water.
  • Are you an expectant Mother / do breastfeed?

Please do not drink Apple Cider Vinegar “The Mother” without discussing with your doctor. Remember, that the mother version of Apple Cider Vinegar is raw and organic. It contains bacteria though beneficial it may be harsh on the baby.

The Correct Time To Drink:

  • As I had mentioned in the beginning of this post, I drink in the morning right after an hour I took my Thyroid pill. I take it only once a day.
  • Some people drink it twice or thrice daily before/after meals.

– If you want to reduce the amount of food you intake, I would suggest you take it before you head to lunch. If you would like to enjoy the food but want to flush things faster, I think it is better to drink it after your meal. I am saying this before/after meal strategy based on my understanding.

  • I buy it online via Amazon as I haven’t seen the organic version yet in the supermarkets around me. It is a bit expensive when compared to the filtered ACV but the benefits will make us forget the price.

Questions To You:

Do you drink ACV already?

Please do share your thoughts in the comments section as it would be helpful to others irrespective of whether it is a Positive/Negative effect.

See You soon shortly with a post on one of the Probiotic drink you might be seeing around these days.

References:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26064976

https://www.washington.edu/wholeu/2015/07/07/beyond-the-hype-apple-cider-vinegar-as-an-alternative-therapy/

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/gut-second-brain/

How to Fix Your Gut Bacteria and Lose Weight

Help Your Kid Become More Creative With Toontastic

A Short But A Bit Lengthy Story:

I went to apply an Aadhar card for my kid a few months back. I had reached the destination at around 6 AM. It was not a surprise for me to see eight to ten people before me sitting over the median on the roadside as the office was not open. Yes, to get an Aadhar card you need to go early and buy a token even before the representatives arrive. This is the scenario in Chennai and not sure how about the other regions.

The count of the total number of people had increased steadily. By the time it clocked 9 AM, there were at least two hundred residents waiting to get the token behind me. The crowd had everybody irrespective of the gender and age starting from a five-year-old kid to elderly people.

Some people came by car with coolers and high ranged cell phones in hand besides the folder with documents. And, there was another group of people too who came with a small plastic cover in hand in the attire they went to bed the previous day night. But, at the end, everyone was waiting for the same attender to issue the token. Considering the aim alone, everyone seemed to be equal.

There was one more thing too seemed that to be in common between both the groups. To be more specific, the kids who came with their parents to register their biometric details. During the waiting period, almost 90 percent of the kids were holding the cell phones of either of their parents. Some kids hands were tender and tiny. Not grown enough to hold the big screen cell phones with tempered glass over it which made me think about the exposure that today’s kids have got.

The parents present over there were tired and had no option other than allowing the kids to stay glued with the cell phones. Finally, the attender had issued the tokens and I got a glimpse of a big relief in every parent’s face including mine. Everybody got ready for their turn and left once after completing the registration.

The End.

Kids Versus Gadgets:

Toontastic
Image Credit: Pixabay

We, parents very well know that an excessive exposure of kids to cell phones are not good. And, it is true that sometimes we parents are forced to situations like the one mentioned above. Without any effective alternatives, we end up encouraging things that harm our kids rather than doing good. We do not have many options even if we wanted to try especially in public places.

Today’s kids are more onto gadgets and their exposure is very high onto technologies rather than traditional games. I am not saying that Youtube or playing a game on a cell phone for a reasonable amount of time is bad.

But, it is our responsibility to check whether those games really help our kids be creative or degrade their brain growth.

Trying Hard To Bring Your Kid Away From Mobile Phones & Tablets?

Do not push yourselves Hard. Instead, look for other alternatives which might help in turning a trouble into a benefit.

Toontastic

Image Credit: Pixabay

We must remember that the outdoor activities are not the only things that will help us bring a creative kid. There are few things that even a cell phone or a tablet too can do. But, still, we do not give it a shot.

The only reason behind that is the lack of awareness about such things among us. There are mobile applications that come with great benefits too in parallel to the ones that make the kids dumb. It is almost like playing a Treasure Hunt game.

The parents of the kid who had got used to cell phones and tablets should also ensure that they spend time on finding and installing good applications in their cell phones. This is in addition to setting the filter to show only kids friendly contents.

In this post, we are going to look at one of the mobile application that undoubtedly can make our kids smarter and creative.

Toontastic is Fantastic:

This Google developed application is a storytelling mobile application available for free usage.

With this application, one can create stories, draw a picture, animate the characters and a lot more. This is not just for the kids but also can be utilized by Parents and anyone who is above five years old.

Want Your Kid To Be Creative?

Toontastic
Image Credit: Pixabay

If your answer is Yes to the above question. Then get ready, it’s you and me who need to be creative first.

Wanted to make your son or daughter listen to what you say?

Try these.

* Be creative.

* Narrate your content like a story involving animations and cartoon characters.

*  Spice it up with some background music.

* Turn yourself into a kid. Sometimes, stepping down from the Parental role and turning yourself as a kid will do wonders.

Toontastic Is Not Kids Only:

# Got some free time? Make a story using this mobile app as a family. Involve all the members of your family in your creation.

# Share it with friends and relatives.

# Keep it stored in a hard disk so that it would give a nostalgic feel when you watch those videos several years later.

I am yet to give a glimpse of this Toontastic 3D to my kid which I would shortly reveal. But, though I am new here, I could very well see the potential this application has got in it.

I am sure that it would help us, parents, to engage our kids very well in a great and healthy way rather than allowing them to get used to regular cartoons and movie trailers.

Kids Versus Toontastic:

Toontastic
Image Credit: Pixabay

I strongly feel that Toontastic can do a great job in helping us to bring up creative kids. Especially the kids who had turned to six already.

It can,

~ Act as an exercise to the kid’s brain.

~ Make them more creative.

~ Make them speak English fluently without feeling shy.

~ Improve listening skills as the characters involved are just cartoon. Remember, it’s us, parents, who create the stories. The tip here is to match your kid’s requirement and interest while narrating the stories.

~ Will help them remember things more easily. I believe, what they had listened or seen in Toontastic would not fade for a while at least.

My Story:

Below is one short story named ‘Diwali’ which I had created. This is just an example. Please do remember I am a new bee here. You may come across typo errors and silence in between the narration. Please bear with me.

Non-Parents Versus Toontastic:

Are you a Teacher, budding Story Teller, Musician, Author, Inventor, Graphic Designer, Cartoonist or whatever?

Toontastic can be a great support for you in showcasing your talents and being creative.

Start now, unleash your thoughts, find the treasure and utilize its potential. I see a lot more possibilities in this Toontastic for a passive income too.

Would be happy to discuss if you and I are on the same page.

Notes On Toontastic 3D:

Google’s toontastic application can be downloaded into an iOS as well as Android devices.

Please note that the size of the installation file is more hence you would need some free space on your cell phone. Do not have space? Uninstall the applications which you use very less. Trust me, its worthy.

I am happy to get to know about this application at least now. It has passed 500 thousand downloads as of now in play store. But it is not really a surprise considering the benefits it brings.

Let’s together build a better generation. See you all soon.

Toontastic

Image Credit: Pixabay

Chrome Extension – The Eleven That Rocks

It is been a week, between this post and my previous post. Could not spend time in writing, Friends. I am back again with some interesting information down in this post. This time it is in-line with Google Chrome Extension.

Before we move further.

Browser Extension:

chrome extension

Image Credit: Pixabay

It is nothing but a piece of software that extends the functionalities of a web browser. Also known as a plug-in / Add-in / Add-on / Extension.

Chrome Extension:

This post would give glimpses of some of the useful google chrome extension that can help us increase our productivity, save time and money. The extensions mentioned below are handpicked by me and I use most of them even now.

1. Grammarly

I love this. I had got introduced to its application at first and later to the chrome extension.

chrome extension

This plug-in helps me with corrections and suggestions whenever I write, be it an email at work or a blog. A chrome extension that I recommend to a lot of the people who uses a computer at work.

Will there be anyone who would be happy to see a typographical error or a grammatical error once an email is sent?

The recall email option does not work always in Microsoft Outlook. Similarly, the undo option does not stay for long in case of google email. Prevention is better than cure.

chrome extension

Trust me, this extension rocks… A free version, as well as pro version, are available but the former meets my requirement very well.

2. Figure it Out (FIO)

A chrome extension that gives us glimpses of the current time of many locations when a new browser tab is opened.

chrome extension

A very useful addon for a person who interacts every day with many people who are in different time zones. A handy app for the people in software profession as most of them interact with the clients from different locations.

Oh, yeah I do see your point. Some of u might think that adding an extra clock to the particular time zone at the taskbar should do the job.

I do agree but we can have only two clocks besides the home country clock on our personal computer. If you are a person working with people from not more than two countries then the extra clock approach will work. But, still this google extension FIO is much more effective as it also allows you to create an event or meeting via google, outlook etc. on the same page.

3. Forest

One of the natural thing which is struggling to exist in the modern world. Hoardings and giant banners with the slogan plant a tree is what we see nowadays in and around us. Would have been good if we all had realized that a much earlier than now.

Huh, it is a different story anyway if we compare with what we are gonna see below.

Forest is a google chrome extension that allows us to grow trees on our laptops or PCs.

chrome extension

While at work, we tend to distract due to a lot of external things and also sometimes due to our laziness. There is no doubt that the brain chemical Dopamine in our brain can motivate us to be more productive. But, what is that thing that can motivate us to boost our brain chemical?

We all do have a long-term goal as well as a short-term goal. Similarly, we do have got something called micro goals? A goal that lasts only for few minutes to few hours. For such micro goals, the forest extension helps a lot.

What To Do?
chrome extension
  • Plant a tree and set a time before you start a task.
  • Do not distract yourself with things other than what you are doing as a part of the task.
  • As you do your work, the plant which you had planted grows.
  • Once you complete the task and the set time has reached, you can find that the plant has become a tree.
  • Just harvest your output by keeping this extension as your companion.

You can create a forest by planting more trees. The best part is it also allows us to Blacklist and White-list the websites that might distract us from work.

We can also sync the app with our Android and iPhone to analyze the statistics and more.
Remember, it is proven that breaking bigger tasks into smaller parts helps us complete it much faster.

4. Strict Workflow:

An extension of Pomodoro Technique. Hope you know about this technique. For those who are hearing about it for the first time.

Pomodoro Technique – It is a time management technique where a timer breaks down our work into 25-minute intervals. Work for 25, break for 5, repeat the same.

chrome extension

Strict Workflow – helps us to block websites which consume most of our valuable time. The best thing is that it blocks only the websites that we specify and not all the websites.

Just like Forest, this chrome extension can help a lot of professionals who do not have any browsing restrictions at their workplace during work hours.

5. Google Dictionary (by Google)

A powerful dictionary extension which can provide the meaning of a selected word in a web page. A double-click on a word helps us save a lot of time. Opening a new tab in the browser or a dictionary software to find out a meaning of a word is no longer required. Try it, you will love it.

chrome extension

6. SpeakIt

I use this voice reading chrome extension when I wanted to listen to the content in an article or a news online instead of reading.

I also use this extension when I wanted to listen to someone else reading my content. This helps me change or do minor changes to the content I write on my blog for better readability.

I would say that it is almost like a Google Assistant, Siri, Alexa or Cortana that most of us are yet to utilize on our cell phones. SpeakIt does have its limitations like the total number of words that can read. But, truly saves time.

7. Save to Pocket (aka) Pocket

Helps us in a scenario like this.

Found something good online, wanted to read but had to forgo for time being?

That is where Pocket plays a great role especially when we do not want to bookmark the page just to read a particular post.

chrome extension

Pocket, not just helps us save an article but also can allow us to save videos etc for later visits. The best part about this chrome extension is that it can be viewed from multiple devices via syncing. Can be used even offline.

Comes to a rescue of people who loves to read while on travel to work/home by train and bus. One-Click is what is needed to save the content you see online.

8. Awesome screenshot

Awesome add-in for those who need to capture screens while at work.

Let us assume that you are working on creating a step by step technical document which will have screenshots captured from the software. This is an extension that you need to give it a shot.

chrome extension

Screen Capture is not the only task that is possible in this plug-in instead it comes with a lot more necessary features like Blurring of the sensitive portion and screen recording too.

Available in chrome as well as Firefox. Being a great fan of the software Snagit, I still like this one too.

9. Hola

Do you travel frequently to other countries? Do you access websites that are restricted to your country?

chrome extension

Hola can help. It is an unlimited VPN google extension which works on Peer to Peer approach.

10. Honey

A must use add-in if you are a person who purchases things online.

chrome extension

Honey, provides us with all the coupons available in a particular website separated based on categories. Applies the coupon automatically instead of an explicit action from the user. Works great with Amazon India and Flipkart.

11. The Camelizer

This is again an extension related to online buying. This chrome extension provides us with information about the price history of a product. Helps us analyze the trend and save money while buying the product. This extension is not working with the eCommerce sites of India at this point.

Note On Chrome Extensions:

It is recommended to install and use the google chrome extensions or similar by considering the number of users and the reviews. Just like a malicious software a malicious extension can cause damage to the computer and also play a role on privacy issues.