Monday, December 17, 2012

My garden December 2012

New blooms of Bougainvillea, lavender and the oranges. Only problem with them is pruning. Every time I prune it I have scratches over my hand.

Sorry state of our lawn.
Our lawn is usually infested by termites and we apply chemical fertilizer to minimize the infestation. So far we have applied thrice in two years but this time we decided to tackle in organic way. So my husband applied urea directly on to them. I have told thousand times not to do this but he has done this couple of times and killed few plants here and there. Later he applied neem powder to them. As a results we have even badder looking grass, never ever follow this.

Rapidly spreading Thunbergia blue creeper. They are every where in our front garden and have taken the Bougainvillea plants for the support.

Umbrella plant growing tall against the windows.

Dwarf variegated umbrella plant and the dark pink rose. I tried to propagate the variegated umbrella plant, but I wasn't successful.
Roses are very hungry plants and always in need of nourishment, otherwise they fail to bloom. One of the thumb rule you should follow for roses are pruning and fertilizing. Luckily I stay in the outskirts of the city so I have access to the cow dung manure. Every month I mix the fresh cowdung with less than equal proportion of neem powder, dilute the mixture with water and apply to the plants.

Lastly my pomegranate which has so far given us around 10 fruits tasting good.

Hope you enjoyed my garden!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Last week...

Hope you all had super Diwali blast. Whenever I think of Diwali, eating sweets, crackers and cleaning comes into my mind. We all do cleaning everyday but for the festival Diwali it's even more. We got live in Gujarat for about 3 years and I got this habit of cleaning home for Deepavali from Gujaratis. It's is believed that Goddess Lakshmi resides only in clean home.

Sharing here with you is our children's room.
Currently this room is occupied to the fullest by the elder son Pranav. The younger one Prajwal is yet to establish his foot here and his domain is the living room and the dining hall.
I have a special cleaning session of this room on Monday morning after two days of masti by the boys. You can't imagine state of this room at the end of the week -:)
We tried a lot making Pranav to clean his room(especially his table) by bribing, threatening etc., but it works only temporarily.



Monday, November 5, 2012

Cloth basket

There are lot of cotton sarees my in-law, mother gave for making cloth nappies for my toddler sons years ago. Most them were unused, so I decided to make better use of it and made a basket out of it. They aren't sturdy for sure but all they can do is hold things together.
It has been months since I started this project and dropped in between. It was just like few things that I fail to continue due to lack of motivation. So it was tucked away in the wardrobe for many months. Last week when I was cleaning the wardrobe I found my half finished project. I felt like continuing it. I started working on it with full force and hardly took 3-4 hrs to complete it.  
To make it sturdy I took my old unused  crossstich  base and stitched the cloth plaits back to back.

After finishing it, there was a heavy demand from both my sons. The elder one wanted it to hold his Cricket Attack cards and the younger one to hold his small toy cars. I know I should make more to satisfy their demands...

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Tips.... about chikkoo

Image via Fruitpedia
Sapota or chikkoo as we call them is one of my favorite fruit. But unfortunately whenever I bring them home, it's more thrown than eaten. If I get the ripe ones, I cannot consume them all at once, the next day they would have the sour taste. Once I asked the shopkeeper how do I make the raw ones ripe at home. He suggested me to put them in the rice dabba/box and close its lid. But again they would be ripe but would have a undesired wrinkled skin. Therefore most of the time I just avoid buying sapotas even though they are tempting.
But recently I thought to give it another try. I put them in a polythene bag and then put this bag in the rice box. Ha, ha this trick of mine worked. 
So guys if you are sapota lovers like me, all you have to do is put the raw, grown sapotas in a polythene bag, tie it and put them in the rice box with a closing lid and you get to taste the juicy sapotas in the end...

Friday, October 19, 2012

Lord Ganesha, the Vignaharta..

It's been weeks since the festival 'Ganesh Chaturti' is celebrated and over. Sometime in August there was a competition announced in the local Kannada paper. It was about painting Lord Ganesha in any form and submitting. After intense googling I came upon a simple  painting of Ganesha in lovely Madhubani style. I decided to give it a try, and if at all it came out re-presentable then I would send it across the paper's address. But due to my MIL illness I could not complete it on-time and the whole idea was dropped.
Like the celebrations running late in the daily TV soaps, I finally could complete the picture, frame it and seek the blessings of Lord Ganesha.
After viewing the results of the competition, I discovered that there were lot of talented painters among us and their way of depicting the Lord was simply amazing . I am glad that I didn't participate, I know I would have looked like a fool among them -:)))

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Flowers, Plenty of them..

How do you spend your week if you are a homemaker like me? 
Me, all I do is arrange and re-arrange most of the things at home, and I am sure most of the decor lovers do the same. Apart from this I constantly try to arrange flowers. Oh, don't think too big on this, all I am talking is putting the flowers in a holder/vase, few match here and there and then making a pleasing flower arrangement for myself. 
Who doesn't love flowers in their home? Flowers brings happiness and adds cheerfulness to your life, your home. I am one lucky girl who has sources of flowers other than buying from outside. Yes, I pick flowers from my own garden, from the scarcely populated public garden, few fallen flowers from trees, fresh flowers from trees etc.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Hibiscus Idli's

Surprised, aren't you!
Today I am sharing you a simple tip while preparing Idli's. Well this is a traditional recipe followed in my in-laws place and it does tastes good.
It's just that you add few hibiscus leaves to your Idli batter. The most preferred one is the white hibiscus leaves but if you don't have it you can add leaves of any other colored hibiscus. You add approximately 20-25 leaves of the white Hibiscus or approximately 8-10 leaves of any other color. This is considering serving three people.
Please note that while making the batter soak a bit lesser Urad dal than you usually do. If you are using a grinder for grinding then put the leaves first in the blender and later to the grinder along with the Urad dal.
As a result you will have
1. Colorful green Idlis (If you add grated carrots, definitely more colorful) instead of boring white ones according to my son.
2. More healthier version of Idli.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Weekend Drive to Lepakshi..

Bangalore has a lot of places around for sight seeing, picnic spots, most of them usually crowded on the weekends. We wanted some place which would definitely appeal, calm and a enjoyable long drive from home. So we set in to drive to Lepakshi, a beautiful temple situated near the Karnataka-Andhra border in our brand new Renault-Duster..
Lepakshi is situated about 120 KMS from B'lore. The route we took was an excellent one, there was hardly any traffic as it was Sunday. After the Kodikonda  Check post you have to drive approximately 4 KMs and take a left towards Lepakshi.
We left home early morning around 6:30 AM and reached Lepakshi around 9:30 AM breaking in between for a quick breakfast.
As I told you earlier since it was Sunday we were the first ones to arrive to the temple. All I was expecting was some crowd but I was surprised to see the place was devoid of any visitors.

The temple is built by the brothers Viranna and Virupanna, during Vijayanagar empire.  The main deity of the temple is Virupaksh, the main Gana of Lord Shiva and on the right side of the temple we have Devi Parvati. We could not have a good look inside the main shrine as the power was off as soon we entered the temple -:(.

Don't miss beautiful statues surrounding the temple, murals on the ceilings..

While coming back we saw the giant Nandi(situated less than a KM from the main temple) carved from a single granite stone.

This place is worth visiting and you can easily make it in a day.
For more information on Lepakshi..

Friday, July 27, 2012

Tree of life

Ever since I saw this pic Tree of Life by Himani Shukla, I was dying to do it myself. It was simple but a bit tough on following symmetry. Finally finished it and framed it. Tell me what do you think of it? Too simple right..

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Waiting for rains..

Well, it's been a lot of days since I posted something. I have been very inactive, lazy and looking for some inspiration to bounce back.
I am desperately waiting for the rain god to show some mercy upon us. Seeing the climate here in B'lore I feel I am living in extended summer.
Few pics from my garden..
The peacock flowers. This is the only attraction in my backyard for time being.

Hibiscus is another plant in my garden which is flowering profusely..

All my plants lined up for some rain..

Monday, July 9, 2012

Peperomia Mania

This is one of the variety of Peperomia plant. I never knew what it was while buying. Fortunately it is still rocking in my home and you can find it in many corners of my home There are many different varieties in this family and the one that I have has thread-like trailing, thick but weak stems and is more suitable for hanging in a basket. I put a small shoot in a bottle just for curiosity. Although it doesn't grow much, it has managed to produce small leaves in water. Grows well when kept in shaded areas..

Monday, June 25, 2012


A short hi to all bloggers out there.
My weekend passed without much notice. Hubby was out of station touring Mysore with his German Colleagues. So it was just like the rest of the week days only difference being that I had to bear the constants brawls between two brothers for the whole day. Other days it starts the moment elder one comes back home after school.
For munching something along with Tea I decided to do Methi Cuts . The scenario in my house is that whenever I deep fry something my elder son just peeps in every time and tastes few bites from every batch. The reason he tells is that he wants to ensure all are fried properly. So schweet! In the end,  one quarter of the box would be consumed just by him.
Have a fabulous week ahead!!!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Warli on dried bottle gourd.

There are lot of dried fruits,seeds, twigs in my home which I usually find in the empty sites, gardens during my walks and collect them. So far I have refrained myself painting them, keeping them just as they are. But there was one dried bottle gourd in round shape which I could not resist coloring it.  I picked up ultramarine blue, terracotta colors and drew out few simple Warli figures in them. End result not to perfection but I am happy with it.

Friday, June 15, 2012

MTR Rice Sevai...

Well, this is definitely not a recipe post. This is about my experience with the product MTR rice sevai.

The packet contains dried rice noodles, which you empty into boiling water and strain it after few minutes. Once you have rice noodles, you can use it as you want, like preparing lime bath or pulao etc., out of it.
In the past I have made instant rice noodles successfully out of few other brands, but my husband has liking to only this particular brand of MTR's. Every time I make it, it would become a flop show in spite of following the procedure in the packet properly. Umm, properly according to me.
I simply couldn't figure out why the noodles were turning to a lumpy mass. I tried lot of tricks to make each strand of noodle non sticky, like adding pinch of salt, oil etc.. I used to get so frustrated, upset when the end product was not matching what was shown in the packet.. For  many days I stopped buying rice noodles altogether, but once in a while it would make a way in our pantry, courtesy my husband.
Once I got so upset that I fought with my husband bringing it and banning MTR Rice Sevai in our house. This time my husband took the matters to his hands and said 'I know you are doing something wrong, I will try it myself, if it doesn't turn out good we would stop buying it'. Agreed, part of me wishing the same thing happening to him. But voila, it turned out to be best. So the culprit is 'ME NOT FOLLOWING THE INSTRUCTIONS PROPERLY'.
Then we started investigating where I was going wrong. Ok, where this is where I was going wrong, I was not boiling the water properly, I would just see few small bubbles and pour the contents of packet into it. The water has to be thoroughly boiling like you boil for drinking.

So the moral of the story small change in cooking can alter things -:). Sad thing is that, in spite of having around 8 yrs of experience in the kitchen, your husband had to point out your mistake.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Book Review : Extra Virgin by Anne Hawes

I picked up this book from a second hand book shop and tell you the truth, didn't disappoint me.
The story is the real life experience of Anne Hawes and her sister Lucy who are from London and visit a tiny Liguarian village Diano San Pietro in Italy. They visit this place to learn Rose grafting, to experience Italian Reviera but fall in love with the stone house a midst of olive grooves. They buy this house which seems too cheap compared to the highly priced homes in London which they definitely can't afford.  The author describes her experiences with making this village as their second home, olive growing, encounters with their neighbors, beautiful landscapes, peasant villagers and their funny notions about her having cappuccino, salads and using beach . The olive farming village folks think these females have gone nuts for buying olive grooves without any knowledge about them, but gradually assist, accept both of them.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Back to blogging

I am back, after missing in action for more than a month. Where did I go? No fancy vacation, but a visit to my native place. In between a couple of short visits to few relatives nearby Udupi.
After I came back, apart from inch thick dust in home, this mess awaits me in the garden. A few heavy summer showers have made plants,creepers, grass grow like anything. Hmm, it will take few days to clean it up, and make it pleasant, re-presentable. So looking forward to busy hrs in the garden..

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Madhubani Sun

I tried painting sun in Madhubani. Didn't come out good as I expected, and felt I should have added mustache to the SUN. But this I realized after coloring the drawing. Finally it turned out be too plain. I am thinking whether to frame it or not.

A closer view...

Friday, April 13, 2012

Colors of summer

Summer, spring seasons bring out the best in trees. The place where I stay, you can see flowers in myriad colors, beautiful shapes, and added to this you can hear birds chirping in the background constantly. Just makes me take a break from whatever I am doing and get lost in them.

Just could not resist myself by bringing few twigs for my breakfast table bouquet.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Curtain hangings

We have got extra space on the curtain rods which protrudes outside the windows. This way, I could hang few light hangings on to them and avoid any drilling in the walls.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Summer is here..

Summer, the season of blooming flowers, jasmine, mangoes, pickles, sandige(fryums), cool juices, cousins, scorching heat, occasional rain, endless days, sweaty nights is here. Yes, that's what comes to my mind when I think of how I used to spend my summer in South Canara, my native. Nowadays, other than beating the heat, my mind is always thinking of thousands ways to keep the kids engaged into something other than T.V. I bet back then this was the last thing in my mother's mind.

Prepared aam panna for mid-day snack for the family(snack, unbelievable right!)

Monday, March 26, 2012

Paper Bead Necklace

I had a beautiful dress which I didn't want to part with so decided to convert it to my daily wear. But why all beads and decoration when you are wearing it at home? So I removed the beads and rest of the decorations which were mainly on the hand and the neck part of my dress.
Then I did a small recycling project.
Created few paper beads and made a necklace out of these and my dress beads. I am thinking to give it to my cousin sister who has a like for them. Hope she likes it.

Paper Bead Necklace

Saturday, March 24, 2012

What ever happened to my plant?

How many of us buy a plant on an impulse without thinking how to take care of it? I top in this category.
I have this golden philodendron growing well since the day it was bought. There were two shoots grown so I thought to cut one branch and plant in another pot. You see this is been my backup plan always.

Initially the plant refused to adjust, no matter where it was kept. Later it grew, but the leaves always looking dull, folded at the edges. I changed the places so many times, watered daily and what not to make it look healthy.
Came December, I went to my native place keeping all my plants outside for watering in my absence. When I came back I had a pleasant surprise. The plant looked like it had some life. So I thought may be it likes the company of other plants.

But after few days the same state. Drooping leaves.
Sentimental me bought the plant inside and kept it near its mother but still no improvement.
So the last option left is to re-pot, and googling about how to take care of this plant. I am sure Google won't let me down.
I am extremely ashamed to show the last image. This image was just taken before re-potting the plant. While doing this I observed the water was not draining. May be this is the reason why the plant never thrived.