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Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The Great Indian Bai!


Strange title, isn’t it? Well this is what my blog is about today, the “Bai” which very endearingly means our  “KAAMWALI BAI“ (syn. House keeper). The Indian working woman must have. No, I don’t have one and i am seriously and very desperately looking for one! 

Even the Universal formula by  Rhonda Byrne from her book "The Secret" fails in this case which states, "If you love and want anything very passionately, the whole universe starts working to get it for you." well, i am still waiting for the universe to get it and it seems ages! 

She is something every Indian working woman wish to have and once had, will treasure her like a piece of jewellery. Yes that’s true! I can only imagine the many things I will be able to achieve once I find her…(strange but true, finding a 100 unemployed MBA’s is much easier than tracking one good kaamwali Bai here! And politicians still harp, illiteracy is the main cause for unemployment, nonsense, I say!)

So back to what things I will be achieving once god is kind to me and grants me a kaamwali bai..(Which I currently only dream about and not necessarily in this order):

1) Getting up little late in the morning not worrying about readying the breakfast and also getting to eat it (with a cup of tea when it’s still hot!)
2) Leaving the sink with dishes and not worrying about returning home to attend those dirty dishes!
3) Returning home to find the bed made, sofa pillows in place, newspaper in its shelf, not a single toy visible and not tripping over them while walking from the living room to the kitchen.
3) No missing Gyms anymore and not even rushing home from gym worrying about readying dinner on time.
4) Last but not the least, sitting with my laptop reading wonderful blogs in the blogland and writing my few blogs…(without getting exhausted and worrying about getting up early in the morning!)

Hmmmm…….Still dreaming!  Zzzzz…Zzzzzzzzz


Bye,
Shilpa 


Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Revamped Mobile case

Hello, Welcome!

Another one of my revamped DIY project. Well this one was the most easiest of the lot which i have tried until now.



Almost a year back, my sweet hubby (well, he is not that sweet always and definitely not a always bring home gifts to wife kinda a person) gifted me with Nokia N8. First high end phone i ever had. By far i love this phone and had really helped me in organizing myself. It really has some amazing features and look wise it is so smarter too. With its 12MP camera, it has replaced my digicam for all the snaps i click (sorry, no more praising this gadget as i am not on review this product blog here!) But everyone has their favorites, right?

So my phone came with an usual sturdy black case (too plain and boring). I carried it almost everyday wondering how to add a lil bit of more color to it. Sometimes i thought to carry the cell without the case as it looked more smarter but very well knowing my slobbish ways, i decided otherwise. There is not much peppy cell phone cases available here and few which are there, are too garish and loud or either look too childish. Since i carried my phone everywhere including my office meetings, wanted to look more sober as well as colorful. So just to pep it up, i use three hand made ribbon roses in Red (I have the fascination for Red!) along with some store bought green decorative cloth leaves. Arranged them in an order i wanted it to be and glues with the Fevibond (its the best glue..ok..ok.. no more product review and praises) .





So here's my new N8 case with  new peppy look which also by the way can be carried coolly to office meetings ..i just love the way it looks now.

tc, bye, (Come back for my next!)

shilpa

Friday, July 22, 2011

DIY Toys shelf

Welcome to my blog! It really sometimes gets hectic to sit down and write a blog daily, when u are a working mom with office and home activities to tend to. I still getting used to it, may be in some time i will be able to sneak in some time to write a blog daily. I am so totally inspired by the wonderful blogs i have read and moreover this is what my blog is about .... ORGANIZING...so time organizing is a part of it!

Today i am going to show you my another DIY project (well i will not take credit for it, infact not even 10%). The credit goes to my super talented hubby who has created this as more of a need than a decorative project to pass out time.



We have a spare window on the other side (not facing outside ) in our living room which faces the other apartments in our area, so there is no much view. Hence it generally (can say, always) remains closed.(I am constantly referring to "we" here, which is understood that my hubby too is very much actively involved). We thought of sealing this window by covering it, but even though it was not functional it was imparting quite a bit light in to the living room..(and everyone knows, how important and desirable it is for sunlight is to come to your living rooms, when u stay in most populated city like Mumbai and all you get to view is only buildings and buildings surrounding each other blocking the rays.)




So we let it be, but not wanting it to lay idle as there was quite space in front of it which could accommodate a small closet. I did a lot of internet search of how the space can be utilized and zeroed in on to a display shelf for our beautiful collections (well not much right now!). We were to get the work hired and contacted few carpenters/contractors for this job. The amount we required to spend on this really seemed not justifiable for this small makeover purpose. We then thought of taking the matters in our own hand. We already had a spare blocks of wood left after we made our closet done, which was kept aside (we did not throw it, knowing the price of each square feet of wood here in India, it comes to quite a good amount). We searched for an image as we wanted from an internet and the cut out wood pieces in to the required lengths (we hired few helpers for some hours on labor to cut and saw the wood and Sorry, i do not have the cutting pictures of the wood). Once all the pieces were cut, they were fixed in to the form a shelf and fitted in to the window slot. We got some wooden strips as a border for the shelf to make it look more of a built in shelf.

We thought of painting these wooden shelves with black oil paint color, but the paint did not go well as the wood was absorbing color and was not looking even. so my hubby got some stains (polish) in red and black color. We stained the border in red and the inner sections in black (stains were much better than the oil paint, as it also gave that typical antique look to the shelf). So our shelf was ready in few hours (Staining too did not take time to dry!)... something we were looking for ward to. This DIY turned out to be done in less than 1/4th of the amount quoted by the carpenter.

Now since  this is made, what to do with it was our next question? we decided to but few show pieces to display on the shelf..But then again this would be a splurge! finally i (this time, its only me) thought of arranging my kiddo's toys in the shelf. The toy basket was just overflowing with his toys and he had lost count of his innumerable toys and sometimes even forgot they existed. Whenever we go out and pass by a toy shop, seeing the toy display, he insists on having a new toy, which is really irking for me as i am the one who always have to sort his all new brought toys. His most toys are in all good condition which i cannot even purge..

So i arranged all the toys (not all, almost 50%) which he usually plays with, on to the shelf..and voila, it really looked good and my kiddo too liked it..Now he too does not have to dig in to the toy basket to find his toy and he calls our shelf as his little Toy Shop..(and that's true! it can give any small toy shop a competition for it varieties). ..




Finally, i am so happy with this DIY project and love the way it is now used..(We have decided wherever possible we will save money by trying to do things on our own and we tend to admire it more too!)




Well we still have some spare wooden blocks left, so we taken up the next DIY "Name plate" creation project.  Will blog on it soon.

To be more honest, by the time, i finished writing this blog, i completely forgot that i had kept rice to cook. Its only when i got the burning smell that i realized it. see i said it earlier, i am still getting used to time managing! (I have a very useful feature "Kitchen Timer" downloaded on my Nokia N8 for these times, but i rarely use it..Now i think i should start using it to avoid these in future..

Take care and thank you for visiting!
Shilpa 



Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Sunday-Family fun day!

hi all,

welcome back to my blog....Its the start of the week again..Many things in my mind currently to blog about . I had been in the blog land reading many awesome blogs (will write about them later).Well, So finally the Sunday is over! Just Love the Sunday! its that refreshing day of the week, charges you up for the whole week. So my lil 4yo D (by the way his name is Darsh and i like to call him my lil  D )wanted to go for a game play(It had been long, almost few weeks, we had not taken him to the gaming zone in our nearby mall), so off we went (me, my hubby and my lil D with a big smile pasted on to his face)..Wow! just love it when he does that with his two cute dimples on display.




The mall seemed to be so crowded. usually it is on Sunday's but added to it, being rains outside so mostly outdoor strollers too were now strolling inside making it seem like a mini sea (probably ocean) of people..The games were for children no doubt but my hubby too enjoys fully with my lil tot, helping him put in games and explaining him..My son is still young to figure out many games, so here my hubby goes back to his childhood days of all Masti and fun with my D. So after spending quite a few hours there (i was too enjoying just seeing these two men having a good time..), and finally exhausted of all the game tickets, we headed to the McDonald's to have a little treat...







This is the picture i clicked of my lil D's typical angry man posture..he was upset the big boys were not letting him play racing car...it was too full..Such a cute pic!


My son was happy thinking now he will get a happy meal toy but i was like"No more toys now" ..he already has a basket overflowing with toys all good enough so i cant even purge them.. initially reluctant , then somehow he agreed to have only the Burger (McChicken to be more specific)..

















Oh! i forgot to mention on the way to McDonald's we stopped by at Hobby Ideas and my hubby without even me knowing purchased this lil DIY bike toy for him..(They both know i would have never allowed this splurge..).My hubby ended up spending more than 2 hours figuring out how to fix this nuts and bolts to make that Bike, after reaching back home..finally he created a bike (i def would not call that a bike)..but my lil D was so happy the way it turned out..children na...they like any weird things..i always tell them "Baap beta do no ek jaise hai" which means "like father like son"..

bye, tc, thanks for visiting...

shilpa

Monday, July 18, 2011

Shoe makeover DIY project

Hello everyone,

Iam an Indian Blogger and so excited to show you my DIY project and moreover so because I am going to link this up with “Made it on Monday”. Monday is a shoe revamp project in there.



For this, one of the most important things I had was an worn out shoe..Many times I felt like I should just throw this sandal away as it was completely in a non wearable state.. I had brought it 4 years back on a great deal (was on sale at just 300 Indian rupees(7.5 USD), the original price was around 900 Indian rupees (23 USD)) on my first wedding anniversary. This was the only shoe I had to wear on every occasion and I liked it very much. The shoe had seen so many beautiful occasions with me together, that I just didn’t have that heart to throw it away.. and then somewhere in the blogland, I read about the shoe revamp DIY projects. I had that moment “Why didn’t I think of it earlier?”. I also read one of the post of shoe revamp in Suburbs mama blog and liked her glittery shoes..But it’s a na na in India here, so didn’t go for it..

So out came my favorite shoe from the closet (yes, still it was nicely kept in the closet). It was a light golden leather shoe with silver front. The sides were badly peeled off. In India here, you do not get all the required art project mterials like available in US and even if you get , it’s in select shops which are in the town and does not have much franchisees… (Hope, in the coming decade we have a Wal-Mart here, Iam just so jealous just b’coz of the presence of Wal-Mart in US! Everything you can think of, it’s in there!)  

So I  brought some acrylic colors in Gold and Pearl (in similar shade to my shoe), some Red and Gold ribbons. (Sorry, I could not click the picture, as I never thought it would turn out good, being this one of my first few DIY projects with no past experience and also never thought I would link up)..

Ok, no more blah blah…see below the steps I followed:

1) First cleared of all the peeled surfaces visible on my shoes just by gently pulling it (I didn’t knew any other way!).
2) Then I applied the transparent Pearl color on all the Gold part of the shoe and let it dry.
3) The front part, where the shoe decorating buckle was placed was totally rusted. I tried removing it, but it was glued to it very strongly, so I just let it be..
4) When the coat dried, I applied the Gold color all over the Pearl colored part. This was my first coat.
5) In the meanwhile, I prepared the ribbon roses and kept ready. (I saw all the video tutorials available on YouTube and practiced.. It’s not that hard at all moreover I saved 50% of the money just buying ribbons rather than the readymade flower here..
6) On drying of the first coat, applied a second coat taking care to uniform the layer of color this time..
7) Glued the two roses on to the front part using a fevibond glue and ta da……My shoe will be soon ready to wear once it completely dries up..

(Forgot to mention, throughout this painting process, I had tape sealed the side plastic part of the shoe to avoid getting it colored by mistake)

Total cost of the project in INR (1USD is approx 40 INR)

Worn out shoe: Nothing
Acrylic gold and pearl color: 15 Rupees each (Total 30 Rs)
Fevibond glue: 20 Rs
Gild and Red ribbon: 10 Rs each (20 Rupees). (The readymade ribbon rose would have cost me 40 Rs).

Total cost of project is 70 Rs i.e. 1.75 USD. And seriously, it does not look cheap and can be worn for many small occasions..
Even my hubby who is a big critic loved the way I turned it out..




Hope you too like it! Thanks for visiting and forgive me for my English diction.. it’s quite indianised you see!


Bye, Shilpa 

Sunday, July 17, 2011

quick egg biryani

hello, welcome back to my recipe section...

Its Sunday again! and as usual we do not get up early on this day! omg, who does? now no starting with that Indian women should get up early and cook and all that blah blah,,,,please not this crap for me..well its more over a brunch day for us. I always try to cook something special on this day as we all lunch together on this day, moreover i did not want to end up in the kitchen slogging and sweating cooking out a delicacy...yes, Indian cooking is too elaborate and time consuming..ask any house wife, 80% of her day is gone just readying up the dishes on the table to the perfection...so guys if you are one of those cooking purists, do no read further, you may get offended. My dishes are for the Women on the Go, who have to look after multiple tasks (Our Sundays are alloted for grocery shopping, cleaning and organizing our home..so complete full hands, so i don't let cooking consume most of the time)....

SO as per my menu plan for the week, today is the "Egg Biryani day". Yes, i plan my menu's well inadvance and will talk about this in my later blog...Here come my version of the Egg Biryani (Trust me ! its tastes great and not even will take the 1/4th time of the actual biryai recipes you find on the internet)..



Ingredients :

Biryani pot (Indian Crock pot)
Vegetable chopper
4-5 eggs
Basmati rice (2 cups)(for 2 for 2 meals)
onion 2-3
Tomato 2
Yoghurt 2tbsp
Chicken stock (u can use maggi chicken masala for that typical non veg flavour)
Seasonings as per your taste: Biryani masala, pepper powder, turmeric, cayenne pepper, sesamme seeds, salt, garam masala, coriander powder, cinnamon powder.
coriander chopped (optional, if available in your refrigerator) (i did not have this, so had to skip)
garlic ginger paste

Method: I hope from the ingredients you have guessed, it is not an elaborate time consuming biryani..(moreover the biryani masala we get in the market, contains all that flavored seasoning we crush and use, so u can easily skip this step)

My Biryani pot (i just love them for their perfect steamed rice) and eggs boiling besides it!



Take out your vegetable chopper and cut the onions in four and put in it, then put the roughly chopped tomatoes, yogurt, garlic ginger paste and all the sesonings..Run the chopper in to a fine paste.





Take sufficient quantity of oil and ghee combination in to you biryani pot. Heat the oil and then pour the above paste and close the lid and let it cook for some time (until the oil starts oozing out of the paste ).



You can boil your eggs seperately in the meanwhile and de-shell them. Put the basmati rice on to this paste along with chicken stock and sufficient water to completely cook the rice. After about 15-20 minutes, all water evaporates and the rice is cooked (u get that perfect biryani rice aroma, that u know, ur rice is ready). Slice your eggs in to two and spread over rice and let it steam for futher 5-10 mins...Done.Let it cool down and serve with raita or achhaar (pickle) or any of your side dish.



Ta da.....how simple and quick ...i cud not simplify this recipe any further..the spice level we prefer is very very low so haven't used any green chillies, but if you like spicy food , then you can go on to add more chilly powder. green chilli paste. Its also taste the way it smells..awesome and my hubby just had his fill with it..

So girls, do not drudge in the kitchen to get that perfect recipe and the perfect masala that had been passed on to us (no doubt they are truly authentic and tastes awesome), but its not for the "On the Go Women"...we have many more things to get done...(no matter what your MIL says about that perfect cooking and sweating to get that perfect taste, don't let this secret to her and you know what, she will not even be able to guess, you had so many shortcuts)..



I also served them in disposable plates, so no more cleaning dishes to think of...No, i am not lazy but its Sunday dear and so many tasks on priority..oh! by the way, its also my menu planning day for the week...i better get going..

One last Secret tip for this recipe: Get a good Biryani masala and use it generously, you will never go wrong!


bye tc

shilpa

catching up with old friend

hi all,
its been days now i have written anything on my blog...when i started it , i decide i will at least try to write something a day or two to track my deslobification process and get everything organised..but seriously, a working woman, mom, wife demands too much from you and very little for yourself..

But then i sneaked in a little "me time" for myself and paid a visit to my old close friend..it was amazing catching up with her after long.. (we never had a chat like this in years plus she was out of contact for few years) and talking about all the fun things and the changes in our life..our kids too bonded very well..seriously it had been long where i was just busy chatting up and lousing around her house..Time just flew. i realized this only when my hubby called up asking if i never thot of coming back home from your girlfriend's place that i enjoyed my me time and i should frequently have this (Indian wives generally do not accept this concept too easily and they would reason that this means to ignore your family... we really need to have a life..)..sorry guys no pics this time ..

also by the way guys, to have this little of me time in the evening, i had to keep prepared and organize everything in the home front before i left so that i don't loose my mind by seeing the mess once i return back (dinner for hubby included in this)...

bye.tc

shilpa

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Everything about Life, family, food and me....: what a day to start with!

Everything about Life, family, food and me....: what a day to start with!: "hi everyone, how many of you are enjoying the heavy rains today while on their way to office? Not many i guess! and that included me as well..."

what a day to start with!

hi everyone, how many of you are enjoying the heavy rains today while on their way to office? Not many i guess! and that included me as well...

yesterday i met with a minor accident wherein a zooming biker rammed in to my car causing it a heavy dent..had to immediately give it for repairs. It had become so indispensable part of my life.. i was feeling so handicap without it for rest of the day and moreover i am to get it back next week only!

Now switch to Today morning 7.00 a.m. I woke up and see what? i felt like letting out a little scream! Heavy rains pouring outside. i wished it was weekend but no, i was a weekday and i had to head to the office! how will i , in these poring rains? My office by the way is at a 10-15 min driving distance but it is in so interior of the city that the rickshawala's just parked outside my building refuse, as there is always water logging in the area due to heavy rains and the roads are too bad at this time....Then "should i just take leave?' i thought for a moment..but only last week i had the entire week on leave due to my lil kids schooling..

My hubby agreed to drop me to office on his two wheeler..i was happy that i will  reach on time but also COMPLETELY DRENCHED! and so it was...even the jacket could not protect me and my out fit from the heavy rains..I am so thankful to him..he always take the repercussions of my slobby and careless ways..(i am aware that the dent in the car has also put a huge dent in his pocket)..

So finally, i reached office as mentioned COMPLETELY DRENCHED! By the way i did not mention i also did the following activities in the morning after waking up as my blog is more about getting rid of my slob ways and how i do it, right?

brushed my teeth
cooked breakfast for kid and hubby (instant noddles, was in no mood to make an elaborate breakfast)
packed tiffin for my kid
cooked lunch (this will serve as dinner too!) (as per the menu planner today was the shrimp curry and rice)
packed my lunch box
Kissed my kid goodbye and sent him in his school bus
Had my bath
Dressed up and off to my office..(i mentioned, my husband was to drop me so he accompanied)

went to grab the car keys.......as out of habit.!

I will talk about my menu planner in detail in following blogs!

bye, Tc

Shilpa

Onion Pepper Chicken Sausage quick recipe

Today came early from office..wasn't feeling well..lunch was already cooked in the morning which serves as dinner also.. usually we have leftover lunch for dinner..It was also raining quite heavily today so the tiredness had already sunk in with that breezy and rainy weather...I felt like having some slight snack which would also serve as a side dish for dinner but something which can be made very very quickly as was in really no mood to spend time in kitchen...

checked my freezer and out came the sausages..just having plain sausages are boring so tried to spice up a bit (Indian mentality, nothing can be eaten plain without frills)..so here comes my "Onion Pepper Sausages" which can be made in same time as instant noodles but much healthier option..i call this a bachelor recipe because of its jhatpat nature..



So the ingredients:

3-4 long sausages (i had the cheese pepper type. you can use plain regular one).
1 big green pepper (shimla mirch )
1 tablespoon onion paste
dash of pepper
dash of cayenne pepper
dash of coriander powder
dash of salt
yes that's it..the last three can be used as per your spice tolerance.

Method:

saute the sausages in little oil..


In the meanwhile, roughly chop up green pepper.


Cut the sausages in few inch round pieces.no need to be perfect..



saute the green pepper in the same pan for some time


Then add the onion paste. I make a sufficient stock of onion paste to use in various curries and gravies. Onion being an indispensable part of indian cooking, this saves me a lot of time in cooking dishes where no longer i have to wait for onions to get soft and brown..


add a dash of pepper, salt, coriander powder, cayenne pepper (your regular lal mirch will do)..since i used pepper sausage, i skipped using pepper powder. just stir for some time and voila...it s ready....Yummilicious snack and also a good side dish for your rice and chicken curry dinner! Try it ....it takes less than 5 minutes.






See, I served these in paper bowls...These really come handy and help in avoiding extra dishes which i have to hand wash.. (Indians still hand wash their dishes, the dish washer concept is still an alien topic here)..and yes no maid for me ..i do it myself, so i resort to these paper bowls which is of great help.I even use them to serve breakfast in morning as iam always  in  a rush to go to ofice and donot want to burden the sink with dirty dishes to attend to it in the evening when i return..

bye...tc....

Really hope i have few visits on my post!
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