Home   |  Issues  |  The Daily Star Home   |   Volume 6, Issue 16, Tuesday, April 19, 2011




The empty nest syndrome

In the 70s, every child in every household had an average of six siblings. In the 80s and 90s this gradually decreased to two or three children per household. However, the new millennium has brought forward a drastic change where the concept of having an “only child” or just two children has suddenly become very popular. And parents, as a result of this trend, have begun to find themselves in a tricky situation when their children leave home and they suffer from what's commonly known as the 'empty nest syndrome', when all the 'birds' have flown from the 'nest'.

The reasons can vary, but mostly it's one of the major two: higher education or marriage. It's not unusual for parents, especially stay-at-home mothers, to suddenly find themselves at a loss. After many years of devoting themselves to taking care of their children, how can one suddenly deal with a massive amount of free time on their hands after the children leave? It is, indeed, an issue to contemplate.

The solution, however, is surprising in its simplicity! Mothers should take a few initial steps to ensure that they have other options open to them when the right time comes. Whilst busy in the hustle and bustle of family life, it's often easy to let friends drift away, as all of one's energy is concentrated on the family. Stay-at-home mothers will often find comfort and friendship in each other as their routines are so similar.

Simple exercises together like shopping or arranging a weekly lunch meet can be a great way to pass time and have something to look forward to. Those who fancy more energetic events may join a fancy dance class together. Some business-minded individuals can even utilise their professional skills and good business sense to start a joint venture. After all, half the boutiques, cafes, arts and crafts stores were started by homemakers with ambition and free time on their hands.

It's advisable to ensure that one has different companions for different events. Too much reliance on just one companion, or one group of companions, can often bring disappointment if they are unavailable or suddenly relocate. As the old saying goes, it's good to have alternatives. And the best thing is, when the time comes for the children to finally leave home, mothers will not have to battle the 'empty nest syndrome' on their own!

By Jennifer Ashraf Kashmi


Stylishly…safe eyes?

A man's best friend is a dog. A woman's best friend is her diamonds. Next on both of the lists is… a sunglass, of course!

Are sunglasses for fashion or necessity? They're for both! Some people wear them to protect their eyes, some people wear them to look great and some people wear them for both.

The easiest way to protect your eyes from the strong rays of the sun is a sunglass.

Generally, sunglasses act as a safety precaution to eye damage but nowadays most people also wear it as a fashion accessory. It's interesting how something that adds to someone's style now was made sometime around the 12th century!

There are many different types of sunglasses made today.

Oversized sunglasses are generally larger for the face. They come in different shapes, sizes and colours. Aviator sunglasses have oversized frames but the lenses are thinner than most. Ray Ban first introduced them in 1936. They were made for pilots, defence personnel or police personnel but are now something almost every other boy owns to look as stylish as ever. Tea shades are round lenses with thin frames. They were popularised during the 1960's by rock legends like John Lennon and Mick Jagger.

Onassis glasses, gargoyles sunglasses, spy sunglasses, Smith sunglasses and more from popular brands have very good demand now in the market.

The most popular brands for sunglasses are Ray Ban, Dior, Ralph Lauren, Fossil, Armani, Oakley, Cartier and so on. Sunglasses have the power to add a little extra something to your fashion statement. You'll see teenage boys all around the world proudly sporting a Fossil or Armani. While girls are more inclined towards Dior or D&G.

Sunglasses are definitely the 'in' thing now. If you don't have a pair yet, go get yourself an oversized or aviator and you'll blend in perfectly with the world of fashion... and that too, while keeping your eyes safe!

By Naziba Basher


Sweet and sour life

Some of the things in life come sugar-coated and we love them. Close your eyes and try to remember the sweetest things that have ever happened to you, you will feel you are smiling. Memories are that special, they can make us smile even in some of the saddest hours of life.

Now think of a relationship with a friend that went sour or a group discussion that turned so sour that you swore that you would never again express an opinion. The smile on your face will disappear as you think of something like that. Memories are that powerful, they can foil your effort to be happy.

So, let's make an effort to put behind the hours of melancholy, for they seldom help us move forward. In order to keep our spirit soaring, let's make an effort to read some passages from life's diary, those specific passages on life's beautiful moments.

Turn the pages of the diary at the end of a busy day, before going to sleep or while sipping a cup of tea on a quiet afternoon. I know watching a sunset has become a luxury in our metropolis. But buildings still have roofs; take your time to watch a sunset from your rooftop. The sorrows of life will melt as the last rays of the sun dissolve in the horizon.

In our routine lives, deaths come and go. I remember the death of a favourite uncle and how much I cried at the news. But like many other family members, I forgot the agony of losing him in three months. I cannot remember the last time I deeply thought about him and the good times I spent with him. I woke up one morning two months ago. I dreamed about him. I woke and sat up on my bed a strange feeling of sadness and guilt overwhelmed me.

It is so easy to forget someone who I once met almost every day. Is it the busy life or is it normal human psychology that made me not remember him in a long time? I don't know the answer. But wouldn't it be nice to remember once in a while the loved ones we lost? The recalling process can be teary but therein one may find some solace.

Close your eyes to remember the face of an aunt, uncle, grandparent, parent or sibling, who passed away. It might be difficult the first few minutes, but the face eventually will appear in the mirror of your mind.

Life is a strange path that leads us to events we never wanted to come across. But then again, it is the unexpectedness of life's events that makes it so exhilarating. Let's tread the path with courage and love. As you tread the path, remember those you loved and lost. Don't think too much about those who stabbed your heart and left it bleeding, for perhaps they don't deserve to be remembered.

By Wara Karim


Try it out

Dating in under tk. 500
Those days out with your sweetheart is costing you more than you bargained for? Here's an idea which can save your pocket and your relationship at the same time:

A movie at the Star Cineplex followed by a romantic rickshaw ride:
Two tickets for the movie will cost you Tk. 300, drinks and pop-corn will take away another 100 bucks leaving you Tk. 100 to roam around hand-in-hand on a rickshaw at twilight and sip a cup of roadside tea. Happiness truly doesn't have to cost a lot.

Personal Shopping
Here are a few ideas on how to treat yourself within a budget, cause after all you are special.

Pamper yourself
Burn atleast a 1000 bucks on a day out with yourself and yourself alone at the parlour. Get a facial, manicure and pedicure (students are offered discounts at most big parlours). This tip is not for woman exclusively since the city is now well equipped for meeting the men's relaxation needs.

Spend on yourself like there is no tomorrow. But here's the trick, buy many small tit bits so that you can return home laden with packets rather than having one big packet. Buy jewelery, movies, books, eye-pencils, colourful lipsticks and whatever else catches your eyes on the streets.


Things we fancy

Mounted Televisions
Everyone we know seems to be exchanging that space-filling TV with the slim ones which stare back at you from its cozy space on the walls.

LCD and LED TVs are the new must have in a modern home. The fact that a few thousand additional bucks upgrades your TV purchase from the old boxes to these newer versions, seems to be helping the trend grow.

Vacation? Where to? How many times has the reply been “to the land of 'Khapunkaap' and 'Swasthikhaa'”? Thailand is the new India. Everyone goes there and everyone returns there. Thailand's attraction to both genders is understandable. The female of the species are attracted by those super cheap bags and shoes while the males are attracted to almost everything.

Once upon a time girls used to get multiple piercings on the same ear as a show of 'punk-hood'. Then that became fashion and the 'good-girls' started doing it too. Today the trend has evolved to include belly-button piercings, eyebrow piercings and, yes you guessed it, tongue piercings. Boys too have gotten on the band-wagon, inspired by heavy doses of Metal and so on. Puncturing your skin, is IN.

-LS Desk


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