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Archive for the ‘LA VIE EST BELLE…(LIFE IS BEAUTIFUL)..’ Category

Homemade Play Dough:

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Mira is 2 and half years old now.Time flies, yes it does:)..She has started making sentences in her own gibberish ways, which only I can understand. She loves reading, solving puzzles, listening to music, coloring and screaming of course:)..She’s more of a indoor games person and loves to do activities at home. It’s fun watching her grow and of course there are some panic moments:). She still hasn’t overcome her habit of putting things in her mouth. Give her any object and she’ll first try it by tasting it. We are always on high alert when we give her activities like coloring or stringing beads. This situation prompted me to look for activities which require home made stuff , so that they are safe for her. Our latest introduction to activities list is the play dough. I tried giving her the store bought play dough and I knew that it would first go in her mouth and she did!!..sigh! Out went the store bought play dough.

I spent quite some time researching on web on how to make edible(can be put into the mouth and not meant to be eaten per se) play dough which is safe and prepared with ingredients present at home. I particularly liked this recipe which was mentioned in Redtedart. This requires just 3 basic ingredients and color is optional.Children love playing with colors so adding edible food color is a good way to get them to play.I tried tasting the dough and not a great dough to taste, so I’m sure she’ll be forced to just play with it and not taste it. I also found out that this is also an excellent way to teach them colors. Mira now asks me for red dough or green one as these are the colors she just got introduced to.

Try making small quantities of different colored doughs and you can also add some  edible glitter. Go ahead and have fun making colorful wonders. Another important point to remember is if you stay in a place which is hot and humid, please store the dough in an airtight container in the fridge to prevent fungus growing on it. The salt added in the dough is meant to prevent fungal growth.

You’ll need:

All purpose flour(maida): 1 cup

Vegetable oil: 1/2 cup (actual recipe asked for 1 cup, have reduced to half)

Salt: 1/2 teaspn

Water

Food color of your choice: I have used red and green.

Procedure:

Heat some water in a container and mix the required amount of color to it. In a bowl mix maida, vegetable oil, salt and rub the mix with your hands. Salt is added to prevent fungus growth and the dough has a longer shelf life. I did not want to take the risk so I store the dough in an airtight container and keep it in the fridge.To the above mix, keep adding the color mixed water little by little and keep kneading. This is a bit of an exercise for your arms as you have to keep kneading till the dough is very soft, just like store bought play dough.

Lo and galore the play dough is ready for your child’s creativity. Have fun with your little one. Mine loves rolling chapattis and making dosas with the dough:)..

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I’ve been on a sabbatical for almost a year now and finally I now find some time to pin myself down and do what I love doing the most…blogging.

Well, I take this moment to proudly announce the arrival of our cute li’l angel, our daughter ‘Mira’. She happened to arrive on the Krishna Janmashtami day and hence we decided to name her ‘Mira’ meaning ‘Princess’ and also named after the great Krishna devotee ‘ Meera’..

From the time she has arrived into my life, Change is the only thing that has been a Constant. All of a sudden my life has taken off on a tangent. There’s only one person around whom my whole life now revolves-my daughter..Amidst all the nonstop nappy changing, sleepless nights, disturbed schedules- Chaotic Life is Beautiful. There’s this sudden  change in perspective; untidiness doesn’t matter at all, being late for appointments is okay, dressing sense gone for a toss is understandable, this is something new to me..In all these changes I see a smile of my beautiful child and forget everything, forget being a perfectionist, forget being punctual or for that matter even my OCD has taken a backseat, good for me..

She’s such a beautiful child who has given me so much happiness. She has made me understand the meaning of ‘unconditional love’. No matter how tired I feel or how bad my day has been, just a smile on her face brightens me up and refreshes me. She even makes me feel like I’m Celine Dion or Lata Mangeshkar as she loves all the songs I croon to her and she hums along with me. Her coos and aahs make me feel that she’s listening very attentively to whatever I’m saying all the time..She makes me feel like a Superwoman who can protect her, be it from the loud noise of bursting crackers during diwali or bad dreams..She makes me feel like I’m the most indispensable person in the world..

Coming to think of it, there’s so much that I can learn from her. I have learnt by just observing her-never give up ,keep trying no matter what, to forget pain easily(one sweet medicine and she forgets that she has had a shot:), to love everyone and to be persistent, which I feel  really works in this world:).. She such a bundle of energy , her nonstop exercise of swaying her legs and hands in the air makes me wonder as to where does she get so much energy from, I need to go there..being a mother i can go on and on:)..

Of all the relationships that I share, being a ‘MOTHER’ has been the most fulfilling of them all, something which needs to be experienced and cannot be explained.

This is my favorite Piece from Kahlil Gibran’s ‘The Prophet’, which I keep reading time and again. I keeping reminding myself..

And a woman who held a babe against her bosom said, “Speak to us of Children.”
And he said:
Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you, yet they belong not to you.
You may give them your love but not your thoughts.
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow, which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you.
For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.
You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth.
The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite, and He bends you with His might that His arrows may go swift and far.
Let your bending in the archer’s hand be for gladness;
For even as he loves the arrow that flies, so He loves also the bow that is stable.

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They say ‘Good things come in small packages’ and in this case the pleasant surprise and the good thing was an invite to celebrate the 2nd Brand Anniversary Celebrations of the LaLit Suri Hospitality Group at Lalit Ashok Hotel. What was even more surprising, was a Bangalore Bloggers meet along with the Food Tasting event at their Pan Asian Restaurant ‘OKO’. This big event through a small package in the form of an email:)..

It sounded fun..the very thought of meeting new people who share a common interest-FOOD was even more exciting. Suma of Cakes and More and Madhuri  of Cookcurrynook were the leading ladies who helped Tinky, the PR executive of Perfect Relations in organising the meet. Thank you girls for actually making the bloggers meet happen and Thank you Tinky for providing a platform for this event. I knew Madhuri earlier through college and I was meeting rest of the food bloggers for the first time,whom I knew through their blogs. All of us finally met and got introduced.

So here’s all of us:(L TO R- Suma (cakes and more), Shubhada (Shubhada123), Madhuri (cookcurrynook), Ramya(Mane Adige) and Geeta (The Fragrant kitchen).

THE BANGALORE FOOD BLOGGERS..

THE BANGALORE FOOD BLOGGERS..

 

OKO is a roof top Pan AsianRestaurant. The ambience was very exotic. We were graciously greeted by a statue of Buddha with a serene smile, and I knew instantly that I would love this place.

BUDDHA WITH A SERENE SMILE..

The whole restaurant was beautifully decked with fresh flowers, lovely aromatic candles, soft lighting and the thing that struck me the most was a breath taking view of our very own ‘Namma Bengaluru’ from its roof top. I could see the beautiful shimmering lights displaying the city skyline from a small cutout..it was truly spectacular.  The lounge seating was very well spaced out with softly lit tables, comfy seats and a sweeping white canvas roof kept the chilly Bangalore breeze away. The whole space looked very lively and cozy with accents of dark colored wood for furniture, which added a lot of warmth to the interiors.. I could go on and on, on its decor, can’t let go the architect in me :)..

THE ROOF TOP RESTAURANT

We were welcomed with a lovely assortment of cocktails, mocktails and some fresh fruit juices. The bar tenders showed off their talent by arranging a small impromptu show in their flair routines and literally ‘ breathed fire’..It was a lovely spectacle to watch.  They also presented us with the special Lalit cocktail.The staff was very prompt in their service and made sure that we were ‘FULLY FED UP’:)..

BEAUTIFULLY LIT BAR..

The cuisine was Pan Asian and I was quite a novice at understanding a few names of the dishes, to add to it we were all vegetarians. We requested Tinky and the Chef to organise something vegetarian for us. The Chef promptly and efficiently arranged a vegetarian spread for us. Many thanks to Chef  and Tinky for obliging.

For starters we had a lovely choice of  Char Grilled Okra in Teriyaki sauce which was a huge hit amongst us, we also tasted some sushi and tofu marinated in vietnamese sauces which I felt was tad spicy for my taste buds.  We were served with some Tom Kha Phak  which was a Thai style soup with coconut milk, flavored with kafir lime leaves. I was feeling quite full after the starters, so avoided the soup and directly ventured into the main course which was some lovely fried rice , wok tossed noodles and some Nasi Goreng. To sign off the evening we had some lovely variety of dessert served which had cheesecake, pastries, sweet Azuki bean jelly and some seasonal fruits. It was a lovely evening, I only feel that there should have been more options for the vegetarians as majority of people in Bangalore are vegetarians. The desserts could have been  more authentic Pan Asian.

It was a memorable evening and we all had a blast. I would like to thank the Lalit Group, Tinky for inviting us and above all the food bloggers who made this event fun and enjoyable.

THE LALIT

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Happy Diwali:

Wishing everybody a very happy and prosperous Diwali. This is one of my favourite festivals from childhood. Lots of lights, fireworks, new clothes, abyang snan, loads of sweets and savouries and yes, countless guests visiting our home with gifts for us.. Mom would wake us up early morning before dawn to perform aarti, symbolising return of Lord Krishna after killing Narkasur..Then came the ritualistic abyang snan or oil bath..some attar (perfumed oil) would be mixed with coconut oil and applied all over the body and then new clothes to be worn after bath. A festive spread for lunch and then guests visiting us all day through. After the diwali day next aarti would be on Bhav Bheej, when I would do aarti for my brother and give him gifts..Lucky Bro, would always get his favourite toy car and a big box full of fireworks for diwali along with clothes:)..

When in school,we would have mid term vacations for Diwali and this was all the more, a reason we loved this season. All the kids in our colony would try making the traditional Akash Kandil and show them off on this day and not to forget how all of us would get together to make Narkasur and burn his effigy one day before diwali also called as Holika Dahan..Oh, how I miss this all, especially after shifting to Bangalore. This year I was fortunate to visit my hometown Goa for diwali and I relived every moment, with non stop commentary to my husband about how we celebrated earlier…I’m sure it would be a repeat telecast every year for him:)

I still follow the tradition of making sweets, aarti and abyang snan, but can never beat mom’s enthusiasm..This year since we were In Goa for diwali, we celebrated after we got back. I managed to make a sweet and savoury, inspite of having a hangover:) of my vacation. Will be posting the recipes soon….Have a safe and wonderful Diwali.

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Navratri Celebrations:

This year the celebrations were quite on a low key as I was unwell…I managed to keep the dolls though.. I love arranging the colorful dolls. Couldn’t make any delicacies accept for some channa usli and kosambari.

So here’s a peek at my doll house.

Bombe Mane

 

 

Newly painted Krishna all decked up...

 

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In Krishna’s Kompany:

I always feel Krishna is the most beautiful image amongst all Gods. I have had this great attraction to Lord Krishna and every time I happen to read about him, I end up loving him even more.. He’s the only God who I feel is very human. He’s someone who’s enjoyed all worldly pleasures and loved life and yet gave us a beautiful message about way of life in his Bhagvadgita.

My Mother-in- Law has this beautiful krishna idol which is quite old. It was earlier painted with just 2 colors, blue and gold and somehow I always felt that these colours were not doing any justice to the beauty. Krishna is supposed to be colourful, atleast thats what I always had an image of.

Old Krishna Idol 'Before'..

The reason why I called this topic ‘in Krishna’s Kompany’ is because my husband was also out of station and I never realised the time passing as I had taken up this beautiful task of ‘making someone look good:)’… I tried my hand at painting this idol with acrylic colors for the first time and the result was……

Colourful Krishna 'After'

Everybody loved it and was all praises. May Lord krishna shower his choicest blessing on everyone..’Jai Shri Krishna’..

Shri Krishna

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Strange title isn’t it, well, it’s my all time favourites from MJ’s collection.

I was dusting my kitchen and had kept all my blogging accessories  in a corner and this was something I noticed….

I have this amazing fascination for these two shades, Black and White.  Right from my wardrobe, to the choice in watches, artifacts etc etc..I find these shades very genuine and pure..I’m a very sunny person, but somehow these two shades give me a feeling of space, feeling of depth, feeling of sophistication and class par execellence..

How I wish there would be lesser amounts of greys around!!:)..

From the time I moved into my own house,I have managed to collect quite a bit of junk! (as my husband calls it)and my collection keeps growing day by day.

After I took the shot, only then I noticed some more stuff which followed this theme..maybe when I clean my kitchen next time:).. I’m sure all of us would have collected something which has similar features either, colours, patterns textures etc, we only need an eye to notice it..in my case I noticed when I was cleaning:)..

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