Sunday, February 28, 2010

Sprout Pen and art of writing

How incredibly awesome, mind-numbing is this? And, this is a pen whose shell looks like a sprout, and when the ink is low, it becomes yellow and curls. Dip it in the ink pot, and the sprout becomes alive...

{images courtesy}


Wind beneath my wings

So, Feb has come to an end, and if you recall here, I had laid out some goals for myself for this month, and I wanted to share with you how I fared on them. Let's do a round up, shall we?
  • I finished reading all the six books I set out to read, and infact I finished a seventh one (not on the agenda) - The Last American Man by Elizabeth Gilberts. Blown away - yes, that's what I was!!
  • Did not rewrite Banno Raani's business plan, although have been working really hard to shape up this blog into something more - so, more work to do on that 
  • Instead of contacting a student photographer for creating Banno Raani's look book, I have been working on learning photography myself. There is so much to learn, but I am getting there. I am scoping online tutorials designed specifically for my camera, so I can understand technicalities better and then have also joined info sharing photography sites like Hey, if you are interested, then you can do it too!
  • There are some things at work at my current job. Can't say much at this time, but I am working on it with my manager
  • Yup, this I did not wait too much on. I always calculate how much I spend each day (breakfast, lunch, book buying, shopping expenses - all included) and then make sure that I am saving double at least. Kartik and I are working on some investment strategies at the moment - and will share with you more once finalized
  • Made yumm choux pastry, and ate it like a hungry starved human...finally!! 
  • Yes, meditated and loved it. Well, meditated my style, I mean I could sit still for 20 minutes but with my mind buzzing like a busy traffic highway. So, lot more work on that!
  • Nope - just can't open my eyelids at 6 am - tried but can't! I mean I got up today at 11am!! BEAT that!
  • Waiting for a good book shelf. Looking to buy - any suggestions?
So, people, here I am, ready to move on to the next month - have so much to accomplish! Little by little, yes, little by little, I gather the wind beneath my wings : ) Oooh,  look at me, going all philosophical!

Anyways, have a wonderful week ahead!


Friday, February 26, 2010

Depends how you look at it...

Today, it felt as if:

  • I was walking in a gigantic kick-ass snow globe
  • I was walking through a massive dandruff attack
Depends how you look at it! :)

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Sweetness, I say

So, it snowed again today. But, it was a funny kind of snow. I mean it fell with majestic allure of what I like to describe as giant goblets of crushed ice, it, however, did not accumulate. And, what do you get when it snows for 13 hours and no accumulation? You get a watery, pulpy, mushy concoction, which is not at all pretty like the white powdery snow.

As I watched my every step while walking (didn't want to get stuck in a watering hole, you see), I couldn't help but zero in on the sound my shoes were making in all this mush. It went something like pcchhh-scchhh-pcchhh-schhhh. Hmmm, if you can figure out what that sounds like, 1000 brownie points for you! While crossing the street, enjoying the mess and the cool air, I stopped in front of a leafless tree to observe how the slush was working its thang on the branches. But, what did I see? Nestled between the branches, and oblivious to the chaos of the weather, lay the sweet future.

Well, it really doesn't matter how much it snows and rains and snows again, the future is imminent and is here. It gives me so much happiness because it gives me hope. It is like having full faith in your dreams and they come true. Anywho, below are a couple of shots of the future, ahem, spring (nice and green), and hope they give you as much exuberance as they gave to me.

Sweetness, I say!



Wednesday, February 24, 2010

..In all their scanned glory

I've been saving these for a while...well not in the "oh, I won't share these, these are all mine" way, but more "I hope I can get off my lazy ass and just scan them" way. The minute I laid my hands on the bridal edition of Vogue India,  I knew the following images would make for a good inspiration board or a treat for viewing pleasure - I mean who doesn't love leafing through glorious pages of cascading lehengas, jewelry bling, or simply fashion. So, here they all their scanned glory.

Here we go lovelies... enjoy! {click on the images for a larger size}

How gorgeous is this tomato red! Great for wowing at any party

Love the elegance of cream with all the maddening zari and stone work

You can never go wrong with orange...burnt orange at that!

Just wear a plain outfit, and blind everyone with that clutch!

Love the color explosion here..the hint of lime green is just perfect

Candy pick and tulle!! Dream of a princess come true..

Unique combination - I think matching a nice fitted blazer with lehenga could be the next big trend! love it!!

Ahem, bazillion $$ anyone?? uber glam, and totally need & want!


{PS: There will be also some more pages that I will share with you in the coming days, and a very cool concept that I will (try to) build along with the images. So, watch out for more...and hope I don't make you wait forever :) }

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Action Time baby Action Time

So now that I have read these super duper inspirational blogs – knock your knickers off kinds – now what? Where do I begin? Or do I even have to begin because I’ve already started.? If I've started, then I just need to know where the line of start is, because I cannot see it - yet. Maybe, I need to really see it or train myself to see it.

What am I feeling right now? Honestly, I am content – DANGER!! Yes, I am content with the way things are right now and that’s driving me insane because the fizz is missing and I am nothing without a nice bubbly fizz. What do I do? Run away from my cozy job into the arms of mangled, fumbled, totally crazy unknown. Will this unknown caress my cheeks and wave through my hair in consolation when I cry in stress or frustration? LOOK!! I just did it – I created a monster even when there was no need for it. I created all these scenarios of crying even without lifting my right toe. How stupid can I be?

Why am I discounting myself without giving myself the push? Oooh, world!! Why did you program my mind this way and why did I even let you? Something needs to happen, I can feel it in my guts. Something really needs to happen or I will fall apart in the ruts of gung-ho, standard, stereotype and safe haven.

I need to run, run in any direction even if I don’t know where the road is turning. I need to spend all my energy, because even when I do that, the breaths will still be mine and I will still be alive.

No more talking – typing or whatever. ACTION TIME, baby, ACTION TIME.

Saturday, February 20, 2010


As Saturday morning peaks into afternoon, I lie lazily on the carpet, with a cup of tea in my hand,  contemplating what to do. I want to do so much, but I don't know where to start?

........{blank mind}

{image courtesy, artist misti pavlov}

Friday, February 19, 2010

Not so bummed anymore

Remember, I was so bummed out when I found I could not locate my poems I had submitted online. Well, hello hello, guess someone heard my woes because I finally found them!! Yes, hidden in the folds of gazillions internet pages, my poems rested like a precious pearl, and all I had to do was scratch and scratch...err, I mean search and search. The site had them all this while but had indexed somewhere cooky.
Anyhow, I would love to share all of my poems with you, but here's one for now:

Perennial Legacy
Snowfall of its own kind,
Crunchy leaves.
Beauty of it all, pillages me.
Nature is to happiness what I is to admirer.
Constant gaze and fixation betray my concealed intentions
Smiley eyes, Zen ears, placid mouth
All copulate to deliver an enchanted mind.
This is life, etc.


Wednesday, February 17, 2010

O you Little Doggy

Sometimes all we need is an example or an illustration of how life should be. Because we get so lost in the cacophony of our thoughts (negative and positive) and our personal issues, we don't even take a small breath of hope to realize the indeed life is that amazing - if only we let it be!
Today, I got one such tender reminder.  While standing at the curb, and deciding which direction to go in (is it uptown or east side or west side - conundrums of a New Yorker!!) I saw this really old lady with her groceries spilling from a black rickety carrier. A loaf of fresh bread lay on the top, wrapped in a translucent wrapper with $3.99 printed on it. The bread looked delicious. The next thing I knew, a man with 2 dogs just floated between us. One of the dogs was this huge hairy ball types, standing right next to the lady's cart and sniffing the bread. I tell you, the dog's nose almost touched the bread - it was that close and sniffing. I was ready to hear screams and anger from the old lady, but instead smile and laughter spewed from her direction. She started talking to the dog, while the dog walker apologized. She probably did not hear him and instead kept speaking to the dog, "Yes, fresh bread. O you little doggy, I am sure you would like to have a slice, yess, fresh bread" and that was it. The dog was clueless, as he probably usually is, but the lady was all merry.
So, what's the lesson here? That we should not get riled up about little or big inconveniences - instead, we should just take a deep breath and smile, and voila, the situation will automatically look trivial. Umm, saying "o you little doogy" can help too! :)


Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Zoya by Tanishq..

Tanishq (jewelery line by Tata) is very particular about its style and designs - so no surprise that when it came to a fashion shoot for its collection Zoya, they just had to give us a knockout performance!  Enjoy folks...


{gorgeous images by suresh natrajan at}


My heart skipped a beat when I came across their website. Oh, how I wished Kartik would buy me every little thing on this website! :)

I am talking about Fragonard! It is a  French perfume house founded in 1926 by Eugene Fuchs. Eugene was so enamored by the art of perfumery that he decided to launch the concept of retailing perfumery products to new tourists flocking and exploring the French Rivera. He named the business after the famous Grasse-born painter, Jean Honore-Fragonard.

Personally, the products at Fragonard have a lot of character and charm and make for a good gift for a special someone -- or if you like to splurge on yourself a little! Very reasonably priced for the elegance they exude.
Really, the choices are immense - from perfumes to cosmetics to soaps to home scents. The collection will mesmerize and confuse you - you know, in deciding how pick just one from so many delightful things!
A sample of their collection is below...but, more can be found at their website FRAGONARD


Sunday, February 14, 2010

Valentine's Day love

I love Valentine's Day for what it represents, but I am totally against the commercialism (if you will) that goes on this day. I mean flowers for $500 when they normally cost $5...ridiculous, right? So, I never prompt Kartik to treat me to flowers and chocolates on this day...too cliche and too boring. I am more touched my the simple things he does for me instead.
For instance, for Valentine's today he made me paneer parantha for breakfast - yup, and right from scratch. He knead the dough, grated paneer and put all the masala in it. Oh, and ofcourse with yogurt, pickle and a nice cuppa' tea - just the way I like it! :) Now, this is more real and more heart warming, isn't it? With every bite of his hand made yummy paneer parantha, I melted into his warm fuzzy love. Thank you my sweet hubby - Valentine's more meaningful and fun with you!

And, ofcourse, hoping this sweet day brings the same warmth and fuzziness of love and smiles in your lives too... :)

This gorgeous painting is by Iranian artist, Sarah Fagani. She is known to use bold colors and exuberant style, so check out more of her work at


Saturday, February 13, 2010

Perfectly dressed gentleman

As much as I love photos of gorgeous woman's fashion spreads, I am also fond of men's fashion. Something about clean lines, serious colors (occasionally fun tones too), origami folds of collars and lapels of men's clothing makes for a rather amusing sight.
Now, I always get to see woman fashion being translated from magazines to streets. I mean, there are women in real life who look and dress as if they just walked out of a fashion shoot. So, its really no big deal when I see them, and when I do I just roll my eyes and pretend I can do better -- umm yeah, that's jealousy talking!
Ok, so while my fashion antenna does not buzz when I see a woman dressed to the nines - regularly - I am more than mesmerized when I see a man dressed to the tens in awesomeness, in real life. That's exactly what happened when I chanced upon Mr Barbera's picture in the super fashion blog - The Sartorialist. I just cannot help sharing his impeccable dressing sense with you -- see it for yourself..

How divine are those shoes, jacket and gloves - everything just comes together perfectly for this gentleman!


{images courtesy: The Sartorialist blog}

Friday, February 12, 2010


Today, I am loving the word absolve. As in,

  • My fears are absolving away to make way for confidence and faith
  • All my stupid self-inflicted limitations are now absolved...
  • The world's religious conflicts have absolved into love and tolerance
  • The chocolate absolved into milk and made for a super yummy concoction that I cannot resist :)
And, this is the first image that popped up when I googled the word absolve:



Thursday, February 11, 2010

Supposed to be on vacation

Kartik and I were supposed to be on vacation starting today, but the darn snow ruined it all. Instead were at work. How divine? :) So, refusing the vacation buzz to leave me, I forced Kartik to take me out to dinner. We ended up at a rather warm and cozy Mexican restaurant in Hoboken, and, I ate and ate and ate. Every crumbly leftover of tortilla chips was licked out by me as if I had been starving for months. I am sure I ticked off my fellow diners, but who cares, I was on vacation - err, I felt I was on vacation!

Although I am not there, I would still like to share with you the location where I would have been lazing around in a swimsuit and SPF 70 instead of 40 layers of wool and tons of cold cream!

Laiya Beach, San Juan - Batangas

Oh, Cheers!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Not for the faint hearted

Today was not the day for the faint hearted.
Snow, ice,
more snow, more ice.
Monster salt trucks,
jazzy snow blowers
antique shovels.
Humans working like bees.
And, life interrupted.

As, I said, today was not the day for the faint hearted.

    {gorgeous view from my apartment}


Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Simple Yet Modern

How incredibly genius! Love - loove - the design, the simplicity and modernity of the concept. Truly unique.

The design firm behind this creation is BBB emmebonacina - Italian pioneers of contemporary furniture manufacturing. They have been in this business for over 50 years and pride themselves in using in-depth technology and new materials in all their designs. And, yes, they have been doing this since 1960's wayyy before when computers were housed in 2000 sq ft area and were only used by the government - not in furniture design

Feel free to visit their website to explore more at:


Monday, February 8, 2010


Something about this image made me smile today....

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Oh, wow and now a festival

So, in the previous blog, I yapped away about my my coffee cravings going on and off and about some cool coffee art with you. Well, hello, look what I came across today:

woohoo!!! If you are in NYC - please make sure to go for this festival. I mean,  I am sure I don't have to ask if you are either a coffee or a tea enthusiast or both because I know you are!
Oh, and there will also be chocolates and other sweet treats to mesmerize your palate and ofcourse, tons of variety of coffee and tea. Not to be missed.

More information here.


Friday, February 5, 2010

Just two sips

As I walked by this cafe bistro near my house, the aroma of coffee beans being crushed and morphed into coffee started playing games with my mind. And, right then and there, I wanted to treat myself to coffee sooo badly just so I could quieten my aroma infused antsy mind. But, when I bought myself one, I could only have two sips. Yes, just two sips, and that was it for me! Seriously.
Doesn't it happen usually that the thing we want most, when becomes ours, we kinda' lose interest in it or it loses its importance or crave-satisfying power? Why? I wonder...

But, look, how cute are these cups loaded with coffee, I really need to treat myself to one of these...and NOW! :)

{these lovely images courtesy:}


Thursday, February 4, 2010

The luggage saga

So, how frustrating is to have your laptop stolen by airport or airline staff while you are traveling? Very...
That's exactly what happened to my dad. He was traveling to Houston from JFK and when he reached Houston, and wanted to use his laptop for some research, he could not even find the ghost of the stolen laptop in his suitcase, plus, some of his new shirts were missing too!
Now, this is wrong at so many levels. You think you're stuff is safe at least in the confines of a world-class international airport or a reputed airlines. But, no! You are mistaken!
We tried in vain to contact JetBlue time and again and it felt like chasing a tail. We kept coming back to the original number we dialed and it had zero capacity for voicemail.
Finally, tired of the chase game, I wrote to and got an "out of office" reply saying that they are looking into the matter, and if no response, the email submission would be deleted in 50 days. Weird! But, they had a number listed below and I dialed it. Somebody must be smoking something there because they ended up picking up the phone and I actually got to speak to a live person! Without wasting too much time, I gave her the whole spiel and she asked me to file a "courtesy" complaint with baggage services. And, that's what I did next.
SO, WHAT"S THE STATUS: Still waiting for any response from JetBlue or JFK to respond, investigate and apologize for this theft. If you know of a better way to handle this, please comment or email - would love to get any suggestions! Thank you!

To humor...{image courtesy: flickr/fuffer}

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

For the love of Sushi

  I love food. Ok, so whats new, you may roll your eyes and comment. Well, its a bold statement, don't you think?  The words love and food together? 
Ok, so I am not picky about what I eat, I mean, within the range of things that I can eat (which means no beef, ox tails, and other weird sounding things), I don't usually bisect and dissect the concoctions presented in front of me. And one such cuisine that I find very simple yet beautifully complex is Japanese. Its full of texture and color and taste and I love how it all comes together in tiny specimens of circular delights. 
Yesterday, while hunting for a place to eat after my doctor's appointment (trust me waiting for a doctor can make you really really hungry), I came across this little cubical space that had Japanese fonts all over it. I couldn't   wait to get inside and try out their sushis. You know what they say - that the best food comes from "hole in the wall" type places. So, I ordered some edamame, kani salad, dragon roll, a boston roll (again, waiting makes you really really hungry people) and some green tea. I was super excited and I could almost hear my stomach growl with excitement. 
Hmm, edamame were good (I mean, how could you go wrong with them), and so was the kani salad. The rolls were good except that when I was chewing on the boston roll, something crunched between my teeth a bit. I was surprised because usually Japanese food is the cleanest, and I've never had that experience below. I spit the hard stuff and noticed it was a shell or something. Eww... I am mad now. But, I decide to carry on because my stomach growls are not ceasing. I take another roll into my mouth and when I am chewing, another crunch. Now, I am really really mad. But, guess what? I don't say anything to the chef/host. I just don't! Not sure why, but I sit there tight lipped sipping on my green tea. Maybe its 2 'o' clock in the afternoon and I am just not in the mood to argue. Maybe I should give the chefs a little break because they are working non-stop on the take out orders that are buzzing in. But, then I was just sad that they got Japanese food wrong!

And, then all  these questions start popping up in my head as I watch the waiter shout the order on the phone, the chefs sprinting from the kitchen to the sushi station with refills of things. Why do people compromise on quality? Why do they prefer quantity? Is it always about the money? If it is, then customers will always see through the business's "monetary" objective and will not be interested in their goods and services. Will they be comfortable with that? Then, how would they justify quantity when there are no buyers? See...its a self-feeding cycle, and therefore quality and value should be top priorities in any business in order to retain clients (you see,  I am never going to that restaurant again).

Oh, but I still love Japanese food, and therefore I present to thee some awesome concoctions of this simple yet complex food that are out there...waiting for me to taste them :)


{images courtesy:}

Tuesday, February 2, 2010


In the deepness of the dawn, I run as fast as I can. My nimble legs, my partner in crime. I run with passion, with urgency, with desperation. I don't even know if I am running towards something or running away from it.

Loretta, Print 8x11

{This amazing painting is by super talented Holli. Visit her at her etsy shop and find a treasure trove of lovely delights}

Monday, February 1, 2010

Yeay - fabulous Feb!

I love February - its a short sweet month with sooo much to offer - oh, and not to forget that it brings us one step closer to spring!!
Because its a new month, I am all inspired to check off my huge To-Do List, and what makes it easier and doable is when I write it down (remember, I spoke to you about the power of the written word). Well, well, let's get to a version 1.1 of my list (trust me, it goes through six-seven versions before I feel good about it). So, here we go:

  • Finish off the six books I ordered (The White Tiger, Love is a Killer App, People of the Book, Eat Pray Love, Lion Among Men, Ignore Everybody)
  • Re-write Banno Raani's business plan
  • Contact potential student photographers to develop Banno Raani's look book - why a student photographer? Well, hello, budget!!
  • Research options on alternate working environment and strategies - will most definitely share them with you
  • Continue to be mindful of my spending habits (on unnecessary stuff, that is) and  increase my savings rate by researching few investment vehicles (stocks, index funds, long  CD should I buy??)
  • Make Choux pastry (I mentioned this few blogs ago, but honestly haven't had a chance to do anything about it)
  • Take the first step towards meditating
  • Start getting up at 6am - everyday even on weekends (yes, yes,)
  • Clean up my closet and find a book shelf to put all those books lying in my closet (oh, I am soo lazy sometimes)
Hmm..a few things may come on or off from this list...but, this is pretty decent, don't you think?

And, in the spirit of Feb bringing us closer to spring, I came across these pics and everything about them made me smile and scream "perfect" - I mean look at them!!

And, before I leave, here's to a wonderful productive month ahead! If you haven't already, just grab a scrap of paper or tissue (if thats all you can find) and make your list (even one item list is a list, people!) and enjoy the feeling of crossing it off. Trust me, its addictive!


{image courtesy:}


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