Charan's World

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Gratitude Challenge Week 27

Week 27 topic is Favorite Spot in your city.

I have lot of favorite spots in Seattle and It might not be your regular tourist spots . I am really grateful for this city in introducing me to all the better things in life.

  • Pike’s Place Market. I love walking in the market and looking at what the vendors have. My favorite place to visit is Piroshky . it is a Russian bakery which sells the puff pastries with both savory and sweet filling.
  • Discovery Park. Amazing views if you walk in the trail.
  • Micheals & Joanns – Somehow I always end up in these shops. Though I don’t buy a lot, I just love looking at the arts and crafts shop.
  • Uwajimaya & Central Market – I love these Asian Markets. Thought I can’t read their languages, I just love looking at all the aisles and lets not forget their yummy steamy cheese cake , soft and full of calories . I had to have this whenever I visit these shops.
  • Madison Park. Beautiful area with kids playground and a sandy beach for the kids.
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Changes in Summer 2015

Summer is getting hotter and hotter in Seattle. It’s 75 degrees and I am feeling so hot sitting at home. I thinking I am having a writer’s block since I just don’t feel like writing anything, words just fail me. But I do want to continue with my blog. I do like blogging and wish I have more things to talk about. Life is certainly getting interesting this summer.

I got a new fitness tracker. After using my Polar Loop for almost 18 months, I think I needed a change. I always had my eye on the fitbit and finally I got my hands on the Fitbit Charge HR with the heart rate monitor in the watch. It certainly looks cute enough  and I am in love with the fitbit app. I love that they give you badges if you finish a goal. So it’s like a game, you just want to keep getting more badges. I love the plum color and the display screen. I will do a detailed review soon. It’s been a week and I already love it.

The next change is my obsession which is the planner and planner accessories. I have the feeling that I end up getting lot of planner stuffs but I don’t have the creative mind to know how to use them. I think I have spent a lot of money on the accessories (LOT) and I want to do something about it. So I decided to do some thing creative. I have started to do some water coloring. It’s been ages since I tried my hands on sketching and colors and It is definitely not like riding a bicycle. I had to learn lot of things again. But I am enjoying doing this.

My final and most important change is that I have joined the NaNoWriMo which is National Novel Writing Month which happens in November and they are having a July NaNoWriMo challenge and I have decided to join it. After some encouragement from my friends, I have decided to give it a try. I chose this July contest because I can choose how many words I can write. I am totally terrified. I have researched for months about writing and decided to give it a try. I don’t know how I am going to do but this is a good platform for all the newbie writers. I just want to know if I can do it. Who knows, I could be the worst writer ever but I still want to try it to see if I am any good.

This July contest I have chosen a Novella, Fiction and about 20,000 words and that is my aim. But let’s see how it goes. I think I am going to be stressed out by the end of July. I will definitely tell you all about my experience about the this.

 What are your plans, readers? Any thing interesting?

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Gratitude Challenge Week 26

Week 26 topic is Someone you got to meet.

I have a long list of people I want to meet and have a conversation with. I find all of them interesting and fascinating.

Christine Feehan – My first paranormal author. I would love to chat about her imagination process, how she shapes her characters.

J. D. Robb – I want to talk to her about the dynamics of Eve and Roarke.

Sarah Wildon – I Quit Sugar author. I would love to talk to her, ask her about her journey.

Devdutt Pattanaik – I would love to talk to him about our Hindu Mythology. I think he will be a fascinating person.

Amish Tripathi – Author of Immortals of Meluha. I want to ask him about how he did his character analysis. I love his characters.

Dalai Lama – I want to meet him just to find out if he is genuinely a nice person .

Barack Obama – I want to ask him about how he makes a difficult decisions for the country. I know that he has lots of advisers but does he listen to what his guts tell him to do or does he listen to the advisers.

What about you readers? Do you have any interesting person that you got to meet?

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Barry M Lipstick in TMLP 306

Barry M is an UK brand and one of the things I miss about living in Dublin. I love their pigments and their colors are quite beautiful. I had this lipstick for more than a year and this is one of my favorite lipstick ever. I have a list of things to get in UK and this was in my list for a long time. I got this in the Dubai Airport in Boots (Man, I miss that shop) for about $9. I know that is little bit on the expensive side but I really REALLY wanted it. When I first saw this in Boots, I couldn’t control this stupid smile on my face  and then I heard ting , Didn’t I have this in my list? And so of course, I HAD to get it, right?

This, my readers, is the Touch of Magic by Barry M where it looks like a green lipstick but it applies pink in your lips and it changes color according to the pH of your lips. I had a similar lipstick during my college days where in the tube it looked like a translucent yellow and it applies pink on your lips. I used it all the time and when I moved to Dublin, I completely forgot about it since I haven’t seen something like this in that country. But when I saw this advertisement of Barry M, I had to have this.

The formula is like applying a tinted lip balm, not like the Burt’s Bee one but more like a Revlon Lip Butter. When you apply it, it looks like a very light tinted lip balm but within 5 minutes it gets darker and I think it is one of the lipstick which suits my skin tone. It stains your lips and the stain stays for a long time. It makes my face looks brighter and looks fresh. It is best for those days where you don’t want to apply lipstick. I also found that if I apply my Rimmel Kate Lipstick in 17 which is a pale peach on top of this, it give out this beautiful apricot color which actually suits my skin tone.

Though, I LOVE this lipstick, I use them sparingly because I cannot get this in USA. I cannot think of any CON for this lipstick.  I think this is a must have in your makeup collection. At least for me, this is definitely a must in my makeup bag. What do you think? Do you have any lipstick that you can’t live without?

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Gratitude Challenge Week 25

Week 25 topic is Education.

I am definitely grateful for my Education. Education plays an important part in our Asian Indian Culture and every child is brought up to believe that with Education you can achieve anything.

I am grateful for my parents that they were able to spend for my education. I know that I am not using that education right now but I am still grateful for the education I had. I have seen a lot of illiteracy in India for me to be grateful for my parents.

You don’t realize how many Americans are struggling to pay for their education and they are striving hard to pay their student loans after their education. They work part time when they study and goes through lot of hardship to get their degrees. I am extremely grateful that I don’t have any student loans to pay back. I am also grateful for my hubby who supported me when I was studying in Dublin. I used up all my saving money for the college and I am grateful that he was very encouraging to go back to college when I had many doubts.

Remember Education always helps in your life. Very few people succeed in life without education.

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Motherhood Tales – Going Crazy

It’s been so long since I have written in this series. I think it’s almost a year since I wrote something about my crazy life with a preschooler. In a year, she has changed a lot, starting with her vocabularies, height, annoying me , etc. Her vocabulary has increased beyond compare. She is using “actually” and “properly” a lot. She has learnt a lot from her preschool and she has also learnt to be mean  as well. She has started saying mean things to us if we don’t do what she says. We have told her that it is rude but I don’t know, Let’s see if she will learn.

Moving on to her height, She had a sudden growth spurt last December. I think she is skipping her 4T clothes . She is a skinny little girl so her tops and t-shirts still fits her but the problem is with her pants. She doesn’t like to wear Jeans. She only wants to wear leggings or to be exact, she wants an elastic hips in her pants. But since her growth spurt, her pant ends about 5 inches above her ankles . Seriously, I can’t get her 5T because the hips won’t fit her and so she ends up wearing her pants and Thank God, it’s summer, everyone can think Its’s a capri .

Do you think that they learn how to annoy the parents in school? I swear to God, She has gotten a lot annoying. I think she realizes our breaking point and does that again and again. Since she says “Please”, she expects us to give her whatever she wants and if we don’t, the tantrum starts . I am normally good with ignoring her when she is in that kind of mood but after hearing 15 minutes of her screaming, I am at a breaking point. Once she is in her tantrum mood, she starts being mean to the kitties  which I don’t tolerate and that is my breaking point.

But other than that she is a good kid. She is a well-behaved kid when she is outside. She also knows what she wants and most of the time she gets it. Her eating habits haven’t improved but her doctor said she doesn’t have complains about her health. She is still a small eater and loves Indian food. We always try to restrict her TV times to 1-2 hours a day and on the weekends, we try to take her out.

Since it’s summer, we try to take her out every weekend. We have lots of plans this summer starting with camping, zoo, parks, beach and safari. She loves going to park and  beach. She is crazy about water play so we started taking her to the pool. And She loves her planning time with her mommy . We both sit and play with our planner. I even got her an inexpensive planner .

Most of the fault is probably in me because I don’t have much patience in riding through her tantrums. I find that I like her following my rules and if doesn’t then it makes me go crazy as well. When I mean rules, I mean for example, cleaning up the toys or even cleaning up after all the art and craft stuffs she does. It does drives me nuts when I see bits and pieces of paper all around the house once she finished her paper cutting project  .

Well, I guess that is the crazy things going on in this mother’s life. I don’t know how mother’s manage 3-4 kids. Hats off to them, I am in awe of their patience and coolness in riding the tantrum. I have seen such cool mom when I am out and I am just in awe of them. Kudos ladies. What kind of mother are you? Tell me readers.

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Gratitude Challenge Week 24

Week 24 topic is A Book you have learned from.

As you all know, I am a big time reader. Mostly I read fiction but sometimes I find the non-fiction interesting too. I have two books in my list which I am grateful for.

 

The first book is Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff for Moms: Simple Ways to Stress Less and Enjoy Your Family More. I am definitely grateful for this book since it made me feel that I am not a bad mom. I wanted everything to be perfect and the right way. But the book told me that it is ok if the house is not in order or even if you want to be selfish and take time for yourself. I loved this book because it is what it says, Don’t sweat the small stuff.


The next one is I Quit Sugar by Sarah Wilson. This book made me realize just how much sugar we are consuming on a daily day basis. I am definitely grateful to this book since I am looking at the sugar in the product label all the time. I did try to go completely sugar free but it was really tough and I didn’t last even a week because I use 1 tsp of honey with my tea everyday and I really need my tea .


I Quit Sugar: Your Complete 8-Week Detox Program and Cookbook (Paperback)


List Price: $25.00 USD
New From: $11.55 USD In Stock
Used from: $8.67 USD In Stock

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Chocolate Overnight Oatmeal Smoothie

They say Breakfast is a very important meal of the day and I know that lot of you ladies, like me, do not feel like cooking breakfast in the morning. I am definitely not a morning person and that is why I skip breakfast sometime because I just don’t feel like cooking as soon as I get up. I tried making eggs and toast for sometime but I just didn’t feel like doing it in the morning. So I ended up eating the leftover dinner for breakfast because all I had to do was just heat it in the microwave and it’s ready.

But for the past week, I have been thinking of going back to being healthy. I have lost the way ever since I came back from our trip to India. I stopped keeping my eye on the food I eat and suddenly I realized that some of the clothes feel tight on me  and that is not good. So I ended up looking for ideas to get back to being healthy.

And lo behold, I found a health blog called Running with Spoons and I am getting ideas from her recipes and I love it. I kind of tweaked her recipe to what I had in my pantry and I made this oatmeal smoothie and ever since I am addicted to drinking them in the morning and I don’t feel hungry for at least 3 hours and that is great.

Chocolate Overnight Oatmeal Smoothie

Rating: 51

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 8 hours

Yield: 1

Chocolate Overnight Oatmeal Smoothie

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup Trader Joe's Organic Multi-grain Hot Cereal
  • 1/2 cup Whole milk
  • 1/2 cup Water
  • 1 tbsp Chia Seeds
  • 1 tbsp Unsweetened Shredded Coconut
  • 2 tsp Cocoa powder
  • 3 tbsp Honey

Instructions

  1. Place all the ingredients in a container and soak them overnight.
  2. The next morning, just add them to the blender and blend till they have a smooth consistency.
  3. Add additional water if you think it is too thick.
http://www.charanzworld.com/chocolate-overnight-oatmeal-smoothie/

And there it is a yummy morning breakfast which I have been drinking with variations each day. Some days I add fruits or dates or almond butter, etc. I think this is one of my favorite, easy and quick breakfast in the morning.

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Tomatillo Sambar

I have never cooked Tomatillo in my life and somehow I just thought it was just a green tomato. Then I saw this in my grocery store and I thought why not try something. They looked gorgeous. They are covered by a dry papery skin and inside is a shiny green tomatillo. Be sure to wash the tomatillo since it kinda had a sticky feel to it.

I was looking at some recipes to try and then thought why not a Tomatillo Sambar since I have never made it before it could have been a disaster but somehow it turned out good. It was a little bit since I never thought that the Tomatillo will be sour but it worked out fine in the end.

Instead of the traditional Toor dhal, I used the Masoor Dhal because of the cooking time and it was really good.

Tomatillo Sambar

Tomatillo Sambar

Ingredients

  • Tomatillo - 8 pieces
  • Masoor Dhal - 1/2 Cup
  • Red Onions - 1, Sliced thin
  • Sambar Powder - 1 Tbsp
  • Curry Leaves - 6 leaves
  • Asafoetida - a pinch
  • Sesame oil - 2 tsp
  • Cilantro - handful, chopped
  • salt to taste

Instructions

  1. Add the Dhal, tomatillo and 1 1/2 cup water in the pressure cooker and switch it off after 5 whistles.
  2. Then in a kadai, add sesame oil and saute the onions till they get translucent.
  3. Add 3 cups of water, curry leaves and asafoetida to the onions and let it boil for about 5 minutes.
  4. Add the sambar powder and boil again for 5 minutes
  5. Add the cooked dhal, tomatillo and salt to the mix and boil it for about 5 more minutes.
  6. Switch the burner off and add the cilantro to the sambar.
http://www.charanzworld.com/tomatillo-sambar/

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