Do Visit my very own 'Food' Blog' for delicious meals

Thursday, 17 November 2016

Decoupage Workshop With 50 Young

I have always been interested in decoupage art. It is very simple to make, all it requires is patience and innovation. The best part is that we can use almost any thing, tissue paper, greeting cards, fabric, magazine clippings, newspaper, photographs, etc. All you need to do is to cut, paste and then cover with several coats of varnish or lacquer. Some of the decoupage work that I have done in the past……

Lately I attended a decoupage workshop to get into the groove and re-hone my creative skills. 50-young group had organised the decoupage workshop and Sangeeta Pardeshi was our mentor.

All the things that were required for this session on decoupage were neatly assembled on the table. Colorful tissue paper, glue, sponge, sandpaper, Mod fudge, latex white paint and wooden pencil holder.

We started by painting the wooden pencil holder with latex white paint and kept it for drying.

The printed tissue paper was a special kind and it had three layers. We separated the three layers, discarded the plane ones and worked on printed layer only. The border had to be torn off. Tearing the paper is better than cutting, the rough edges of the tissue blends easily with the back ground.

For 3d work that I had work on some time back, a very sharp scissors was used to cut the prints separately, the white edges were painted black before I could use it. Three layers of same print were placed one over the other to give depth by folding the second and third layer. (well that is for advance work)

Coming back, the three layers of tissue paper were separated, and the colorful printed top layer was used for the project.

Working slowly, we applied glue to the white pencil holder (that we had painted earlier)…stuck the tissue paper with the brush and applied glue neatly (inside and outside of tissue) in one direction only over the print. Care must be taken to avoid crease and to iron out the bubble (if any). Left it to dry

To give the gloss, it was covered with few layers of ModPodge, drying each layer before applying the next coat.

Sandpaper is used to smoothen the rough edges and give a good finish.

The decoupage session was of two hours, but time just tick by. There was a lucky draw and I won one more article.

I was excited to share this art with my friends. We met over lunch at friend’s home and then sat down to work on making more things.

It was an enjoyable evening creating designs on drinking glasses.

There are many videos on decoupage available on line. If you seriously want to practise this art, you could watch tutorials on U-tube. One link that clearly explains this art, gives step by step tutorials. Do visit it at


Monday, 12 September 2016

Visit To Dada Vaswani Mission In Pune

When I said I am going for Dadas darshan, two more women followed me. They thought I was to meet Dada closely and have a personal meeting with Dada J P Vaswani.
In reality, I was on my route to see Dadas darshan, a museum. I had heard great reviews about this museum but never had opportunity to visit it during my trip to Pune. On this trip, this was my priority. At the first opportunity that I got, I went there with my cousins.
We reached the campus of Dada Vaswani mission twenty minutes before the actual show time, that happens hourly. One devotee came up to us and volunteered to show us around.

We stood facing the impressive white building. A beautiful heritage building, originally a Jeejeebhoy Castle, was handed to the Mira School. For several years, it was lying vacant and then occupied by Deccan College and Research Institute. Gangaram Sajandas, a close disciple was successful in negotiating with the owner of the building, Lady Jeejeebjoy, to purchase it for Brotherhood Association. After the death of Sadhu Vaswani in 1966, the Association was renamed as the Sadhu Vaswani Mission.

At the far end, amidst the beautiful garden, is the sacred Samadhi that enshrines the holy ashes of Sadhu T L Vaswani. We walked up to the Samadhi taking in the peaceful vibrations in the air.

On the right side, is a huge tree planted by Sadhu T L Vaswani way back in 1958. This 58-years old tree has blossomed over the years and still stands strong.
We walked further to the back of the building. We came across Mathuribhao Karamchand Mahbubani Hostel for girls, inaugurated at the hands of first Vice-President of India in 1965. Behind the main building are two school, Primary and secondary Mira schools.
For a brief time, we browsed through some spiritual books at a book store in the front near the entrance of the mission.
The clock ticked on and we headed towards Darshan Museum.
The museum is one of its kind, three dimensional, interactive, 3d holographic and impressive.  The museum is built on a space of 9500 sq. feet and ranks as number one on trip advisor. It is biographical depiction of Sadhu Vaswani life narrated through series of multimedia light and sound shows combined with 3d projection system creating an impressive experience.
After the show, the word spread that J P Vaswani would give a brief sighting to a small group of his devotees. We rushed to his chamber and were happy to meet him.
When I said Bless me Dada he replied I need your blessing too. Such humility and love flows through this Divine soul. His words still rings in my ears. He said- Help the weak, the needy and the poor. Do as much as you can without any expectation of fruit or rewards. But if you cannot help personally, at least pray that somebody else can help them.

Thursday, 11 August 2016

Don't React

The more reactive the person is, the further away he is from self. 

Nobody can succeed in instigating or digging our sanity if we do not allow it. Its no use blaming others for our problems and seeking pity from our peers. 

Everybody has right to their expression and many comments are made on observations and past experiences, they may or may not be personal but the problem arises when we react, gossip and worsen the situation that leads to depression...ill-feeling...and grudges.

Wednesday, 6 July 2016

Blogging on Facebook in Month of June '16

Coming to blog on my space here is becoming less nowadays because I have been blogging on Facebook more recently. Whatever I blog on Fb remains there only for few days and then it is swallowed up. I have decided that i should bring my status updates regularly on my blog here, so that I can re-visit whenever I wish.

some of my favourite FB status in month of June

Everybody is a celebrity on FB and why not?This is the platform where you can stand and advertise your self, vent your disappointments, share your talents and expect applause from your admirers...of course there are lurkers who will never leave their footprints (no like, no comment) on your page, they will quietly read your work, judge you from your posts, may even comment offline with your set of friends, taking your post as personal attacks when all you are doing is expressing your opinion....but then this is only a ‪#‎Facebook‬ a virtual platform....keep expressing ‪#‎WhatIsOnYourMind‬'

t started with one man..he had just come to rest at the foot path at the end of the lane. He stretched and leaned against the wall. The woman on the other side of wall gave him a glass of water and some stale bread. He was happy that people cared. The word spread..soon it became an everyday affair. sometimes alone and sometimes with his family and friends, who realised this was a friendly neighbourhood. Mats, utensils made their appearance and the comfort zone became so popular that the people increased. Over the period of five years..there are now around twenty people on this footpath..they cook, sleep and even sell drugs to young people. police have no power to vacate them...they disappear for few days but are back again..neighbours continue to give them blankets, water and food...soon...there will be sheltered tin houses.....the environment is filthy and unpleasant. There is nothing anybody can do..neither the people who live in this street nor the police... #BeggarMushroomingInMumbai

Yoga- a simple breathing exercise paving a road to better health but still not easy. How can one concentrate on yoga when the mind is filled with too much turmoil? Day to day activities, our interaction with people brings too much stress. Everything that we do/say/ react is used against us, so much so that we lose the freedom of speech, the thoughts lie wasted under breath and yoga goes for a royal toss...#Yogaday

For ppl to cooperate in our plan, we have first to win their trust. For that we must respect, understand and accept their shortcomings. Not everybody is perfect, actually nobody is- but every imperfect person has one quality that shines above everything else, invest on that good quality and win their trust‪#‎LifeLessons‬
If the word spills out before you could control, apologise..don't just keep mum‪#‎SlipperyTongue‬
I too want to exit from all the drama of who said what and why and all that negativity.. ‪#‎peace‬ ‪#‎pexit‬

Don't complain that watsapp is eating away the quality of time. It is NOT, if it is used moderately everyday(for a maximum of one hour only) to connect with family and friends in good times and in bad times. A cheerful emoji helps us understand that all is well..a message of help, or sorrow brings everybody together lightening up the spirit on days, when otherwise we would be trapped in solitude, suffering in silence till somebody noticed our absence and peeped into our homes to check on us......#watsapp

Why have ppl started copy-pasting messages? 
I believe that its because ppl are scared to express their own thoughts. They want to stay connected but are afraid of hurting ppl s sentiments. People have low tolerance to accept the truth, every FB message is taken as a taunt on a personal level and its always who said what and why..They have lost their sense of humor and cannot take a joke objectively..
so where is the freedom of expression?? 
Your own friends start judging u and might even go on silent mode...un-friending u just because you expressed what was on your mind..unless you are artistic and have talent to share..your opinions is all you have...but there too..u expect likes and comments on ur opinions or else u r annoyed that u get no feedback.....u share photographs of the good times u r having...ppl start calling u show-off n egoist...
so what is the alternate solution...Copy-Paste and be safe...... #CopyPaste

Conceited and cunning, she would avoid eye-contact. She could rant about herself for hours, shutting her eyelids, not caring if people listened or reacted..all she cared was approval of her favors while wearing an ego cap.‪#‎Malika_e_Aliya

In silence, mind plays dirty tricks making you imagine things that are impossible, worthless, depressing. Its only when you share your doubts (with people whom you trust) and try to explore the depth of truth that you begin to understand things. Speak up (if you must) because you value peace and solidarity more than anything else.....‪#‎JustSaying‬

So today it stopped raining after a continious heavy downpour for almost a week. The sky promises a dry weather, I could easily go down for a short walk, maybe stroll up to a superstore n pick up something I fancy..skim milk, maggie or simply roasted spicy peanuts. But laziness has set in...limbs too stiff to venture out of my comfort zone..I have created a cozy corner in my room, soft with piled up cushions, warm, fits perfectly around me...books around me loaded with stories of far away and laptop within an easy reach..."lethargic" - I scold self and then curse the rain...showing my fist to sky n shouting "See what you have done to me..its all your fault" Rains have ruined me.....and the season has just begun..... #Rains

Book Review- Before We Visit The Goddess

I love reading books that have female as protagonist, especially powerful women who rise from humble background to greater heights through their self confidence and their will to be self reliant. Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni has three such women (grandmother, daughter, grand-daughter) laced together across three generations from Rural Village of India to Austin in Texas, each living an interesting life through love, longing and loneliness. It is delightful read and Chitra is the kind of author who had potential to keep you engaged in such a way that you begin to walk into their lives.

I love her style of writing and beautifully framed sentences.

Push away the past, that vessel in which all emotions curdle to regret’

Life is lines of dominoes falling.  One thing leads to another, and then another, just like you’d planned. But suddenly a domino gets skewed, events change direction, people dig in their heels, and you’re faced with a situation that you didn’t see coming, you thought you were so cleverPage175

The book begins with Sabitri, who starts to write letter (on request from her daughter Bela seeking help from her mother to guide her daughter) to Tara, who she has never met but wants to advise her on the importance of education. But Sabitri fails to find the right words, writes instead her own story of struggles, love, disappointment and her sense of achievement.

Sabitri’s dreams were audacious, unseemly for the daughter of poor village priest. People around her were determined to crush them. The rules her mother wanted her to live by, proverbs for good women, were too simple for her. She could not accept them.

Good daughters are fortunate lamps, brightening the family’s name
Wicked daughter are firebrands, blackening the family name. page 205

The meaning of ‘fortunate lamp’ she finds when she works on a unique recipe day and night till she got it right, the taste that she finally achieves without having to depend on anyone else. She discovered that she had a special talent that nobody could take it away, that there is a sense of achievement and satisfaction on getting that success.  It is that ‘Fortunate lamp’ she wanted from Tara and Bela too.

That is the message she wanted to pass on to Bela (who elopes to America illegally to join Sanjay but struggles and leads a lonely life) and Tara (the new generation American, completely cut off from Indian culture roots). More than education, a talent is important, a will to work hard, to rise above failures, disappointment and having a faith in oneself to succeed once again.

Although the story revolves around three women, other characters that come into their lives also play the crucial role in steering their journey towards proper path. Each character has an important role to play. Nothing is out of place.

Senior woman, Mrs Mehta, who Tara was to supervise while son and his wife go for a tour surprised me the most with her jest for life and her complete make over from woman clad in white sari to fancy skirts, jeans and short tops and bob cut hair.

Kenneth, a gay neighbour, who changed Bela’s life by encouraging her to hone on her culinary skills and becoming a successful food blogger and writer

Bipin Bihari, a best friend to Sabitri helps her achieve success at Durga sweets

Dr Venkatachalapathi who influence Tara to go back to completing her education

The story moves back and forth, narration shifts from first person to third person, which is confusing at times, especially if you are not reading at one go. But the loops interlock easily, taking the story to a meaningful end.

The last chapter of the book ‘A thousand words’ sums up the whole story through photo albums, letters and notes. It the most touching chapter, full of redemption, where Tara finally understands the true meaning of life after she reads the letters addressed to her by Sabitri

However, I read this book twice, the first time in parts (over the span of 15days with breaks in-between) and second time in one go…. And enjoyed it both the times.


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