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Random thoughts on this Sunday evening.

1. This weekend was incredibly relaxing. Like a getaway. Did nothing major. Just enjoyed time with the family. I am ready for Monday. I think. Almost.
2. This past Wednesday or Tuesday I came up with an idea of writing a blogpost of 100 reasons why I love having a job. As I sit here today I am not sure of what they were. Probably because tomorrow is Monday.
3. My neice turned five today. We enjoyed her princess party. Her brothers aka my sons dressed up in prince costumes two sizes too small. It was an incredibly cute sight.
4. I worry I will never be able to write down a correct recipe for any dish I come up with. Measuring and taking pictures sucks the joy out of cooking for me. Maybe I should post just one dish a week on the blog that I cook specifically for blogging? Pay my son a fee of $1 to be the official photographer maybe!? I like how I think.
5. Will Browny ever find a home!? Or will he just be bounced from owner to owner. I have no clue yet.
6. I love watching the TV Show “The Good Wife”. It makes me glad I am not a lawyer. But I have always wanted to be a lawyer. I also wanted to be an author. Wanted to be an author!? I think I still want to be an author. Or should I be a lawyer instead!? I love writing. Maybe I will love writing briefs!?
7. I made a traffic boo-boo this past week. I loved regaling my colleagues with tales of how I am now an outlaw. Maybe I am meant to be an outlaw when I grow up!?
8. I am listening to “Nanny Diaries” on CD as I drive to and from work. I am loving it. I love simple books. I hope my own book or books will be fun, simple reads as well.
9. I just have not found the time for Pinterest this week. That’s just not right. People lose themselves on Pinterest. I need to work harder at that. This whole being an outlaw thing is cutting into my Pinterest time.
10. I am grateful for my life, my family, health and everything I in my life – the good and the bad. I am also glad tomorrow is Monday. I think. Almost.

 
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Posted by on January 22, 2012 in Life size Bytes

 

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An essay!

Recently Ajay was given the challenge to write a story about a being celebrated in mythology. He did such a good job with it that I wanted to share with you guys, my readers. I hope you like it as much as I did.
Below are some guidelines he was given:
1. Craft a plot that occurs in the present but you will bring characteristics from the past into the present day.
2. You will describe the origin of the being, the origin of the being, the powers, descriptions of personality, appearance and attire.
3. You will make a choice of a conflict or problem that ness attention and this being will use powers and skills to solve the situation.

Na,Na, Naa, Na, Na. What a wonderful sound. Who is that? Oh, that is my new old-fashioned friend Krishna. He is no ordinary boy. He says he is a God. He really is!! Krishna has a blue tone to his skin and a shiny feather in his hair. He is a great flute player and he has magical powers and strength. Guess what!? He is with us in these modern times. Krishna has helped solve crimes with the police. But there is one crime that nearly killed him.
One day a farmer had raced to the police station needing help. He said his name was Farmer Bill. He said that someone had killed his cows. Hearing this Krishna jumped up and listened to the rest of the case. Krishna had always liked cows. He always played with one. He played his flute sitting on a cow’s back and rode a cow instead of a horse.
The farmer said that a bullet from five yards away killed the cows. Krishna fainted. A few minutes later after gaining consciousness, Krishna and the policemen were off to check the crime scene. There, at the farm, layer two red stained black and white cows. Krishna implored his crew members if he could leave that instance. He was so saddened seeing the cows helplessly laying there dead.
Krishna stopped weeping and got back to the case. Examining the skeleton of the cows with his super X-ray eyes, he saw that the bullet went through one cow into the other.the bullet had gone through one lung of the first cow but missed the other lung. Then the bullet went through the other cow’s heart. Krishna with his super strength cut the second cow open and took the bullet out. The bullet was sharp and large. It could go through three men at a time.
Krishna and his men left the crime scene to go get fingerprints off of the bullet. At the station, Krishna used his super X-ray eyes to get the finger prints. The prints were of a notorious, wanted poacher named Bad Nam Schiketty. He has recently killed deer, bear and other animals out of season. On seeing and hearing about Bad Nam Krishna steamed up.
Krishna and his crew have been trying to catch him for years with no luck. Krishna and his crew went back to the crime scene determined to catch Bad Nam.
Farmer Bill was still standing there in the spot that Krishna and his crew had left him. The crew and Krishna rushed over to the farmer and started to speak to him about Bad Nam Schiketty. But there was something strange about the bushes in the farmer’s yard. Krishna did not care. Nothing could be there but a rabbit or some harmless creature he thought.
There in the bushes was actually Bad Nam. He was crouching there behind the bushes aiming his rifle at Krishna. BANG!!
The bullet was shot from the same gun used to kill the cows. With his extreme reflexes, Krishna jumped backwards and saw the bullet charging at him. He quickly put a force field around his crew and himself. The bullet bounced off the force field like a bouncy ball into the sky and down to the ground. Bad!!!
Bad Nam Schiketty made a run for it. On seeing him run, Krishna used his Star Wars Force like powers and grabbed Bad Nam. Krishna pulled Bad Nam backwards and handcuffed him.
The farmer was so grateful that the culprit had been and his cows were safe. He hugged Krishna and the entire crew and thanked them profusely.
That was a terrible crime scene and Krishna could have been easily killed. But thanks to his magical powers, super strength and X-ray vision Krishna was able to save the day. Krishna is the ideal crime stopper. Krishna has been a great help to the crew in many such cases. Krishna the crime stopper reporting for duty!!!

 
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Posted by on January 2, 2012 in Life size Bytes

 

Dinner for two.

I haven’t blogged since last Thursday. I did miss you guys but I had a lot going on that kept me away from blogging. My husband recently gifted me an iPad. Woohoo. Thanks honey! And it arrived on Thursday. I could hardly contain myself. All I wanted to do was spend time with my new toy. So I hurriedly put together something that resembles a dinner and got right back to the iPad.
Pongal in its glorious form is an excellent rich flavorful dish. I, unfortunately, in this go around, did not do it justice. My husband rejected it (rightfully so) but my sons devoured it. I was speechless at how much they liked it. I found it too salty for consumption.

Pongal and leftovers curry.


I was off on Friday since it was Good Friday (yay!!) but my good little sister and her good husband had to work. That meant that it was our opportunity to have my niece spend the entire day with us. We actually made it into a sleep over with my niece.
I had made plans to cook with my friend Lisa but abandoned that in favor of a mani-pedi with my niece. Sorry Lisa.
It was raining cats and dogs and we were in no mood to brave the weather, so we had my sons give us girls a mani-pedi and we followed that up with an indoor picnic. And later we watched some Scooby-Doo.

Mani-Pedi for the princess.


Indoor picnic.


Dinner on good Friday was steamed mussels and baked fish. Sorry all. I could not take pictures or focus too much on the dinner I was making. My husband was home by then (thank God!) and we were all anxiously following the tornado watch in our area, ready to run to the basement at a moment’s notice. We were spared but people in the North County were not so lucky. The tornado destroyed an entire concourse at the airport and lots of homes were destroyed. Lucky no lives were lost.
We enjoyed the mussels but the fish was a HUGE hit. I made a coffee-blueberry sauce for the fish. OH so good! It was a pleasure having Riya sleep over.
The kids headed over to my sister’s house on Saturday. That gave me time to finish up a book I was reading. Oh my gosh! What a great book. A must read. So inspiring.
For dinner, it was just my husband and I that night. So I made him his favorite dinner of chapati and curry. We wrapped the night up with a movie. We had a great date night! Simple food and each other for company. Good times!

Chapati served with mushroom-peas curry and some yogurt and pickles.

Chapati (Indian Bread)
**Makes 11 chapatis
Ingredients:
2.5 cups chapati flour or atta
hot water
1/2 cup yogurt
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp olive oil
**Rolling pin
**1/2 cup oil for use during rolling and for frying the chapati

The chapati flour I used. It is what was available in my grocery store.


1. In a mixing bowl, combine the flour, oil, yogurt, salt till thoroughly combined.
2. Add the water, starting with a 1/4 cup of water until a dough is formed. The dough should not be wet and sticky but it should not be dry and hard either. Knead thoroughly, adding water on a need a be basis till a nice elastic dough is formed. The dough should bounce back when pressure is applied.

The chapati dough.


3. Set aside cover for 1/2 hour. Use this time to make a curry to serve with the chapati.
4. Divide the dough into 2 inch diameter balls.
5. Flatten the dough with your hands into a circle of about 4 inches diameter. Apply a thin layer of oil.

Flatten the dough with your hands and apply a thin coat of oil


6. Fold in half. Apply a thin layer of oil on one side of the folded crescent.

Fold in half.


7. Fold in half again keeping the oiled side on the inside.

Second fold. Like my floured fingers?


8. Make into a ball with your hands.
9. Flatten the dough using your hands into a 4 inch diameter circle.
10. Dredge in flour on both sides and roll till a thin circular crepe is formed.

Rolled out chapati.


Thickness of the chapati.


11. Repeat steps 4-9 for the remaining dough balls.
12. Fry both sides of the chapati on a crepe pan. Apply oil to the pan before laying a new crepe to fry. And apply about 1/4 tsp oil on the top of the crepe before turning it over. A crepe is cooked once both sides show sign of light charring (see pic).

Frying chapati


13. Serve with your favorite curry.
!4. Enjoy~!

Please let me know what you thought of the recipe if you do try it.

Till next time,
Radhika.

 
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Posted by on April 27, 2011 in Dinner, Life size Bytes

 

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Spring.

Today was a most beautiful Spring day. I ❤ Spring. Nuff said. After I had made dinner and exercised, I got to mow the lawn. Sigh! Dinner was a simple shrimp pasta dish. I was too eager to get out and start mowing and enjoy the greenery. So dinner was a barley-orzo pasta-penne pasta dish with asparagus, artichoke hearts and shrimp.

Tonight's dinner picture belongs to the beautiful dogwood tree blooming in my front yard. Enjoy~!

Dogwood tree blooming in the front yard.

Till next time,
Radhika.

 
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Posted by on April 13, 2011 in Dinner, Life size Bytes

 

Zero to 360.

In the recent months I haven’t worked out..at all. Not that I mind it one bit. A while back, I decided to develop a sustainable plan for me, as far as diet and exercise are concerned. Eat less and move more.
I was quietly following this, when Dee suggested joining her for a boot camp for charity. That sounded like fun and I signed up for it.
I was feeling great about signing up for it. But on the morning of the boot camp, I started panicking. What was I thinking?? Not even since having signed up had I worked out.
Here I am on the morning of the boot camp, wanting to run and hide behind my mommy.

As you can see the picture is a bit blurry. Wonder if the person taking the picture was as nervous for me as I was. Mommy!!


The boot camp was, as the name suggests, boot camp like! Lots of running, jumping, push-ups, crying, wanting to crawl and hide etc etc. Ok..the last two were just me.
Here’s how the boot camp went…
I did this…

And this…

And some of this….

And some of that…

And a lot of this…

And a lot of that…

And ended the two hours with some of this…

Overall, I was very happy with how I did. For someone who hadn’t worked out in the past few months, I was able to last the entire two hours. I was significantly weaker than the others in push-ups and sliding. Upper body strength training is what I desperately need. I worked out with a very supportive group and the instructor was awesome. I am so glad Dee asked me to go.
Here’s the entire group.

A word to the wise. Be sure to drink plenty of water and keep moving after the workout. This was the advice from the instructor and I followed it to the T. It worked great for me. While I was slightly sore on Sunday, which the day after the boot camp, I was not in any significant pain. By Monday, the soreness was a distant memory.
I would also like to add that it is probably not advisable to do what I did. That is, to not workout for months and then suddenly show up at a boot camp. But if you get a chance to go to a boot camp, go for it!! Work hard but most importantly, have fun!!

Good night,
Radhika.

 
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Posted by on March 9, 2011 in Life size Bytes

 

Bits and pieces

Little plastic pieces are taking over my house. My sons call them Lego people and they are greatly enamored by them. Wherever I look, I find a Lego person aka piece of plastic looking back at me.
How would you like these guys for company when you are making dinner?

Want to have breakfast with these guys?

Consider yourself warned though. The Lego people don’t travel light. Don’t believe me? Look see for yourself. As you can see, not only do they not travel light they are also quite messy.

Here’s some more of their stuff….

Just be sure have extra Ziploc bags lying around. You will need them.

Watch your step at all times. You never know when a Lego person will be lounging around on the carpet.

If you think for a second that they will leave your washer/dryer alone, think again!

And do you know what happens when Lego people hang out on washing machines?? They fall, way back there.

No fun for you as their host, and I am sure no fun for the Lego person who has fallen. So you push and pull and struggle till you have finally rescued the fallen person.

Rescue mission in progress. Yep. That's a broom you see back there. I tried using the broom for rescuing and lost the broom instead. No worries. We did rescue the broom.


Rescued at last!


But despite being my high maintenance guests, there is a lot that the Lego people bring to the table. Have a look!

Hours of play for the boys


Partnership


Teamwork


And some fighting of course!


And for all that, the Lego people and all their tiny little belongings are always welcome at my house.

 
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Posted by on March 4, 2011 in Life size Bytes