Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Food art

I'm sure by now everyone knows how much I 'love' food. Almost my every 10th post is on food :)

Remember a post where I had posted some pictures of artistic lunch boxes? No? Then go here and have a dekho.

And today I found some more of such artistic lunch boxes picture! I find them so cute and lovely that it would be so hard to actually eat them :D

Take a look at some of the pictures here and tell me will you be able to eat these cute lunches?

So artistic and so cute. Aren't they? Wanna see more? Go here.

Monday, August 25, 2008


Yesterday i.e. August 24, 2008 was Janmashtami. I had kept a 'vrat' (was fasting).

I ate one pear for breakfast, sabudana khichdi for lunch, sabudana-aloo cutlest for evening snacks and had kuttu poori with curd and aloo halwa for dinner. I know eating such rich food can hardly be called fasting :)

I also made the panjeeri (a sweet dish) that Ma always used to make on this day besides the other delicacies like "Makhaane ki kheer". I am drooling just writing about it. Anyway coming back to the panjeeri, this is one thing that I always make every year on this day just like Ma.

Although this year I goofed up a bit as my sugar syrup guesstimate was a little off and instead of the dish taking proper shape, it ended up as crumbles. For few minutes I was at a loss not knowing what to do and then I thought of trying to make some more sugar syrup and add it to the mixture. And the idea worked :) Call it fluke or whatever but for me its was great coz it worked! Here is one picture of the mithai -

And I made Anirudh wear a new Kurta-pajama set that I had with me instead of dressing him up up in Kanha dress like I usually do. And he still looked cute in it :)

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Celebrating Ma's birthday

It was Ma's birthday yesterday. She would have been 61. When I try to imagine her but obviously I see a face that is etched in my mind from 9 years ago. Young, smiling and a happy face. Probably by now she would have had a few gray strands in her long hair. A few wrinkles here and there. And when I try to imagine her like this I smile. :)

So like every year, I went to the Blind school to celebrate Ma's birthday along with my Mama as Appa is not in town. Appa organizes lunch every year this day. Every time I go there I come back even more awed looking at these kids and adults. And every time I go there some incident happens that makes me smile and laugh.

As I stepped in the school courtyard I could hear some beautiful classical music being sung and some one playing tabla wonderfully. I looked around and saw the sign of music room on a door. I was so tempted to peep in but then I thought it won't be a good idea to disturb the class.

Yesterday, as we were waiting outside the dining hall waiting for the lunch bell to ring, one kid was approaching the eating area. Just then one of the kitchen staff rang the bell. And when this bell ringer turned around, this boy was just at the entrance. He giggled and said "Aapne bell bajayee aur main aa bhi gaya! Dekha mera jadoo!" and he walked inside to take his seat while still giggling. :)

Soon all the kids started streaming in and we kept telling each one to wash their hands before taking a seat. For the first time yesterday I saw 2-3 very little boys in the school. They would have been the same age as Anirudh. And I felt a lump in my throat seeing them. They were not even able to reach upto the wash basin. So I helped them wash their hands. I had tears welling up in my eyes when I was washing their soft baby hands thinking why? Why? Why? Here is a pic of one of them -

Then me and Mamaji laid down their plates and bowls. Then we served them matar paneer, kashifal subzi with pooris and rice kheer as dessert. Its amazing to see most of them eating with such deftness without making a mess. Some kids liked kashifal and some didn't. Some ate kheer and some didn't. But all of them relished the matar paneer.

Since the last time I saw major changes in the school. They had built a big dining area so that all the kids can eat in one go instead of two shifts that used to happen earlier. It was much more neater and cleaner and airy. The kitchen was also much bigger and had ample natural light streaming in.

So to summarise, we walked out happy and satisfied after the lunch was over.

Friday, August 15, 2008

What did you have for breakfast?

We had some yummy cheese toasts! I know I'm blowing my own trumpet but they were actually quite yummy! Don't believe me? Ok. Then take a look a look at this picture of the cheese toast.

Want another proof? Ok. Here is the ultimate one which no one can defy :)

Now I hope you believe me 200% when I say they were yummy!

So what did you have for breakfast?

P.S. You can find the recipe here - on my food blog!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Independence day celebrations!

The whole office is looking so lovely and full of colors. Almost everyone is dressed in ethnic wear. The boys are wearing different coloured kurtas and the girls are either in suits, lahengas or sarees. If you walk down the stairs and look at the workstation area it seems like a sea of colors!

I am wearing a deep pink bandhani saree and with regular jewelery that I wear everyday. When lot of colleagues said "One can't recognize you! You are looking so different!" I wonder what they meant. Am I looking too old or am I looking nice and good? I really don't know. So when I told them the same thing they just laughed and went away. Leaving me even more perturbed as to what the hell did they mean!!!???

Anyways, I would by by the phrase "Take it as you like it!" and assume they meant I looked good :P

Coming back to dresses of other people, I wonder how you decide what is wearable in workplaces even when its a special occasion? I saw this guy wearing a shimmering purple colored silk (it very well could be synthetic material) and then I saw this girl wearing heavy jewellery and deep green saree with golden embellishments all over! Somehow that felt a little over the limit to me.

We have been collecting money from people who have not come dressed in ethnic wear and shall have a nice snack party in the evening with the collections.

So what all is everybody else doing to celebrate on the even of Independence day. Share it up!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008


This is my entry for this months topic of 'Treasure' at the monthly contest at Point & Shoot.
July 7, 2008 : In our house
Title: The treasure of flight!

It was around 6:40 PM and me and Betu had just returned home after I had picked him up from his daycare. As I was busy trying to unlock the jammed lock I heard Betu shriek and then he started to jump up and down. I swung my head towards him a little bewildered wondering what triggered all this. When I looked at him, I saw such a big smile on his face, gleam in his eyes and happiness that cannot be told in words. He pointed at a leaf of the 'champa' plant in our house at the entrance and said "Mumma dekho! Butterfly!". And when I focussed I saw this - A lime green butterfly which was almost camouflaged with the leaf. It sat there even when Betu tried to touch it and did not flutter away as butterflies usually do. As if it was waiting for Betu. Once Betu had touched it couple of times that it flew away! And Betu shrieked again..in happiness. It was truly a 'treasure' found by him making him so happy. Now you know why I chose this picture for sending for the contest.

And did I tell you my previous entry to the contest was declared the winner in that months' topic "lonely' :D

P.S. The resolution & quality of the photo is not great since I used my phone to click this.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Tamatar-pyaaz chutney

Ever had this chutney with a nice just-off -the-tawa parantha? Its simply heaven!

Aug 11, 2008: Edited to add - The Recipe:

On special demand here is the recipe :) Its fairly easy and takes about 20-25 mins.

  1. 1 cup diced tomato
  2. 1/2-3/4 cup diced onions (optional)
  3. 2-3 cloves garlic (optional)
  4. 2-3 green chillies
  5. Mustard seeds
  6. 2-3 tbsp sugar
  7. 1 tbsp garam masala
  1. Put 1 tbsp oil and when hot add mustard seeds till they splutter.
  2. Add garlic and saute slightly. (this step is not required you are not using garlic)
  3. Add onions and saute till translucent. (this step is not required you are not using garlic)
  4. Add tomatoes and green chilies.
  5. Add salt and half cup water.
  6. Cover and let it simmer
  7. When it gets a little pasty, add sugar and garam masala.
  8. Let it simmer till the water is almost gone. (If you feel the tomato is not properly done and you need to add more water, do that!)
You can eat it warm or eat it cold! It tastes good anyways :)

Friday, August 8, 2008

Our life and our attitude

I was forwarded this article by a friend and I was speechless by the time I had moved on to the 4th paragraph of the article. I was in total awe of this young lad, Naga Naresh Karuturi, and so overwhelmed reading what he had gone through. And I felt so petty about myself thinking how much complaining I do for little little things. And here was this 21 year old who is so happy, so content and so thankful to God for planning out everything for him.

I'm sure 99% of us would have been complaining and cribbing and cursing God if any of us would have gone through what this guy did.

What to do you feel when you see this pic?

I stared at it for god knows how long. And my emotions changed from being shocked to being sympathetic to total admiration for this young chap.

Can you see that smile on his face? Can you see that confidence in himself? Can you feel the contentment? For a moment I had felt sympathetic towards Naresh but within moments I realized that I would be demeaning him and his attitude if I sympathize with him. When he never sympathized with himself how can I?

Once you have read the article and seen all the pictures you will also probably feel what I felt at the end of it.

Its all in the attitude! In the outlook you decide to take for anything in life. Someone would have taken such an accident as a curse and done nothing and be living on peoples pity and sympathy. So it depends totally on us how we want to be and how we want others to feel about us. I know it requires lot of will and I'm not sure if I would have had it if I had myself been in his shoes.

And he is not the only one who has risen above such circumstances and created a place for himself in this world. And every time I read about such people I wonder about us lucky people. Yeah. I think we are just plain lucky. But its people like Naresh who actually build their life from scratch. And then I wonder what have I actually done to deserve such a good life that I've? And do we ever feel thankful to God about it? Or do we take it for granted?

My answer definitely would be a yes for the second question. Yes I've never treasured what I've or been thankful for it. Yes I've taken almost everything for granted. And I need to change my attitude towards life. For sure.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Fear Factor - India series

Anyone been watching "khatron Ke Khiladi" - the indian series of Fear Factor where all these babes try and perform various stunts. Some are dangerous and some are yucky!

I try to watch them whenever I can and I think I'm really in awe with what all these girls have been doing. I was especially in awe with Yana Gupta! God! She has guts!! I've always found her so nonchalant and unnerved with any of the stunts!

Edited to add:
I actually hit the submit button when I was trying to "Save as Draft" and didn't realize my mistake until the comments started coming in.

So to continue the post on Khatron ke Khiladi, besides Yana, I admire the efforts that Pooja Bedi makes for each stunt. She will never give up. She tries really hard to compelte it. I remember the stunt she had to do with hundreds snakes on and around her. She was so damn scared becasue of some really bad accident that happened with her while shooting for a movie with snakes. But still she went and did it. And to me it was immaterial that she cried all the time and was shouting at the top of her voice. But she still finished the stunt. It really takes effort and strong will to do soemthing again which has left a bad scar on your mind earlier.

I do not remember the names of other girls but there are a 1-2 moer of the girls which I really admire for their strong will and guts. I think its a good program to watch.

I've never been afraid of doing stunts which are about heights and dare. But I know I can never ever get myself to do soemthing with those creepy crawlies! NEVER EVER! And that is why I am in awe with these girls who are participating in this show and even doing it! Hats off to them!

The 3 Mistakes Of My Life

I bought Chetan Bhagat's "The 3 Mistakes of My Life" over the weekend and finished reading it as well.

This was my first Chetan Bhagat novel. It was a nice read. Can't say very good but decent enough. Again I will say its a good filler. Only at a few points you felt something for the characters in the book. Mostly it was kind of flat.

I guess my tastes in books require something which gives you an adrenaline rush. Something that makes you feel overwhelmed, where you feel what the character is feeling at various points in the book. Do you get what I'm trying to say?

Anyone read it? What do you feel about the book?

Monday, August 4, 2008


Whenever I read the word change, I am reminded of a funny toon strip. It was from the Archie's comics. I will try to put the wordings from the toon here from whatever I can remember. But the meaning will be the same as the original strip.

Moose: I don't like change

Archie: But Moose its essential to grow and learn things.

Moose: But I still don't like it.

Archie: Why?

Moose (takes out some coins from his pocket, pulls out the pocket lining that has a whole and says): Coz it makes holes in my pockets

:D I know its not THAT funny but somehow it has lingered on in my memory since I read it.

Anyways, coming to the "change" I started to write about was because of the tag that was passed on by Alapana wherein I had to list the changes that happened in me or the way I do certain things or look at other things ever since the significant other, hubby, came into my life.

Interesting. Very interesting. Because I never thought of it at all. I've cribbed many a times on the thigns I hate about hubby or that make me mad but I never thought about the good things that have happened because of him. So this tag has given me a reason to look back and appreciate dear hubby :)

I've become a little confident of my cooking skills because of the appreciations he showers on me :)

I've become totally laid back when it comes to buying veggies and fruits. He does it all the time so I'm totally free from that duty.

I've learnt to be not so hyper about things.

I've become a happier person generally.

So these are a few of the good things that have happened to me since hubby came into my life.

PG, Life Begins and Swati - Please share what changes your significant other has brought in you.

Literary characters

Before you guys Raj & "Lost on the street" and kick me for taking up this tag so late let me remind you of a phrase "better late than never!" :D And when Monika tagged me too on this one, I got the final push to finally get cracking at it.

So here is my list. and I'm sure it would not be very different from yours. And please excuse me if I add some toon characters too. Rather excuse me if my list comprises mainly of toon characters :D

  1. George (Georgina) from Famous Five. I was so much like her as a person. Total tomboyish.
  2. Sherlock Holmes
  3. Hercule Poirot from Agatha Christie
  4. TinTin
  5. Dennis from Dennis the Menace
  6. Darcy from Pride and Prejudice - I hated him yet I liked him. I found him shrewd and at the same time I found him sexy. So basically I had mixed feelings for this character but I was quite intrigued by it too.
  7. Swami from Malgudi Days
  8. Beetle Bailey & Sarge
These are all I can remember off the hat! And now to pass the tag. I wonder if anyone is left who has not done it since I'm doing this after more than a month of being tagged.

I tag HDWK & Monika& Ansh to take it up if they feel like it!

Happy Teej!

P.S. This is the mehendi design that I drew myself on my left hand.