Monday, June 25, 2012

Another and such things.

The only thing necessary for evil to triumph is that good people do nothing – you must be the change that you want to see in the world
For me to quote Gandhi is an irony - I respected him but was never a pacifist, I abhorred any form of injustice and could never keep my big mouth it slapping someone  double my size who was eve-teasing a timid classmate on the bus to refusing to bribe a police man who had wrongfully confiscated our kinetic honda....there are "n" number of incidents in my life where my choices decided my place in life and it is a place I am happy in...of course there are moments where I have the "what if" questions in my head but I am happy with the majority of the choices I have made in my life...I am ok with not grazing with the herd...and standing out, if  I believe I am walking the right path...
A realization I had late in life in my 8th week of pregnancy was that my baby was what I I started my treks to the sunday farmer's market...slowly as my pregnancy progressed I made new friends in the market, people I knew by name - who sold me the freshest eggs, the sweetest strawberries, the strangest looking sunchokes, sumptuous pies, locally sourced honey, and many other things...I learnt that Zucchini flowers could replace pumpkin flowers in the fritters I made that reminded me of home...for the past 6 years I have been mind fully moving a lot of our eating habits to organic foods...watching Aamir Khan's "Satyameva Jayate" 

made me feel good about my decision. To A my brother who tells me I have a tendency to over-correct...whatdya say now? This week has been mind-opening  food wise with a constant deluge of movies like : Food Fight, Ingredients and Toast

Why do we revisit our life as we know it at least twice ( for sure) in our lives :
  1. On New Year's Eve
  2. On our Birthday's
The years are galloping by - don't know when I left the teenage and hit adulthood and have been officially middle-aged for a while now...any regrets, of course a number but my perspective now is to look at the glass half full vs. half empty. Does that mean I have become Ms. Sunshine & Sweetness....not really --- I still terrorize K2 to write a journal, take a nap, eat healthy stuff....and nag K1 to take the garbage out, listen to me (yeah like that's happening),  cut the veggies etc....but I do believe this year I learnt to prioritize what matters most and I think what matters most is My Family -- I love them and I know that they define me and my existence. I have prioritized happiness - I know life is not always fair and maybe I don't get what I want or deserve, yet when I take a step back and get a handle on where my life is, I feel grateful...I feel blessed and I choose happiness. I have prioritized inner peace - I choose to kick out that ANT  that was trying to make a place in my mind...making me question the purpose of living, futility of existence etc. etc...I have prioritized health be it my weekly treks to the Farmer's Market, my foodie adventures in my local market, cooking grains with weird names ( quinoa, farro, amaranth...) or my energizing Zumba classes, relaxing Yoga classes and nature walks with the 2 K's...
Breakfast yesterday was a blast from the past...something Ma used to make time and again for  me and I am keeping the cycle going -  the little guy loves all things eggs. I am sure y'all have your own version of good old scrambled eggs and toast.
For akoori (parsi scrambled eggs) and Toast
  • 2 Organic Jumbo Brown Eggs ( Olivera Egg Ranch)
  •  4 Egg Whites
  • 2 Thai Chili Peppers (Teng Lee Farm) - finely chopped
  • 1 vine ripened Tomato (Rensendiz Farm) - finely chopped
  • 1 Purple Spring Onion (large) (Rodriguez Farm) - finely chopped
  • Fresh Cilantro (Rodriguez Farm) - finely chopped
  • EVOO
  • Organic Turmeric Powder, Roasted Cumin Powder
  • Beckmann's Oat Bran Bread
Add 1 tbspoon of EVOO to wok. When the oil heats -- add the turmeric and cumin powder - it hisses and sizzles. Then add the chopped onions and the chillies (no chillies for K2). Once it has browned ( go with your gut, its all about the smell and the look). add in chopped tomatoes and cook. While the tomatoes are cooking I break the eggs in a bowl and lightly whisk with some salt ( I used some pink australian sea salt that I had, that I needed to use). Add the eggs to the mixture. Stir till the eggs reach the consistency you like ( I like it really well-done, not soft and runny). Add some organic TJ's Ketchup (maybe a spoonful, don't ask me why, I just like it this way).  Sprinkle the cilantro on top.
In parallel make your toast -I usually enjoy my toast with my bite of toast and one bite of the egg --- some kind of heaven that is. K2 likes his toast with Nutella or Chocolate Peanut Butter and K1 with regular peanut butter :-)
For me the meal takes me back to childhood but I am conscious that every bite of this meal is locally sourced/pesticide free/organic . This is one of the fool-proof meals that K2 will eat without a single complaint. I usually pair it with a bowl of cut peaches or strawberries to make it a breakfast-dinner kind of a meal for him (when I am unusually tired or usually lazy :-) ). Sending this over a topic close to my heart : Let's Cook: Kids Specia being hosted by Tickling Palates
How do I plan to spend my birthday - work, hug my son, work some more, talk to Bapa, work some more, hug K1, work some more....have a really lovely meal ( I am really craving Ethiopian....why is it that the Peninsula has no good Ethiopian?)...So Another year goes by and life goes on too...

Thursday, June 14, 2012

12 things women do better than men

Truth be told I avoid Cosmopolitan like plague - I am probably the last person who wants to - wow him  or look 15 at 50 or dress to kill or lose 20 lbs in 6 weeks (or maybe I am just a realist ;))...however when Yahoo homepage had a highlighted article with the title - 12 things women do better than men...but of course I had to click on it...if you would rather read the real deal rather than my take on it click here

The article made me smile...for all the tips I don't want from Cosmopolitan, this one mostly hit spot on (and it was unusually backed by tons of studies ) -- As they said it - Hello, ego boost! Now read on :
1. We're cleaner. Our house looks like someone just moved in (yes I am not too modest am I)...Cleanliness is almost an obsession with me...and it is not seamlessly is hard work and I am pretty much at it 100%...from sweeping, mopping, dusting, organizing, donating, throwing, craiglisting, cataloging....if I left this to K1 and K2....ahem! me thinks that is definitely something that will give me nightmares...
2. We interview better. I think women handle stress better and generally prepare more.
3. We evolve hotter. Apparently women are getting better looking through evolution; meanwhile, men are staying the same...I guess my beautiful mother did not read that rule  book and I ended up looking like my dad :)
4. We survive car accidents more often. This is sad but true: Men are 77 percent more likely to die in a car accident than women, according to a study done by Carnegie Mellon University. If I could get a dime for every time I have told K1 and K2 to wear their seatbelts, I could probably retire and buy an island in Indonesia...with lush coconut trees, endless yoga retreats, amazing nasi gorengs, massages thrown in....ok ok...I digress
5. We're better at seeking comfort. A Mind survey of 2,000 people revealed that women are far more likely than men to talk through their problems. Fifty-three percent of women talk to their friends about what's stressing them out, as opposed to 29 percent of men -- thanks to that friend of mine who spent an hour out of his busy life today talking to me...I owe you one!
6. We're more recession-proof. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 80 percent of those who have lost their jobs since December 2007 have been men. Ouch. This could be because male-dominated fields have been hit the hardest, like manufacturing and finance. That really sucks...but hey, maybe it's time more men became nurses and educators (I have nothing more to add I think Cosmo says it all too well...)
7. We graduate college more often. I think women are in general more tenacious than men and like to see things through
8. We eat healthier. A survey of more than 14,000 people, conducted by the University of Minnesota, showed that women choose far healthier foods than men. The ask around our house is - let's go out, can I get Pasta, Pizza...but I do believe I am teaching K2 to make healthier food choices, appreciate the importance of eating local and seasonal and more importantly identify his produce...I have learnt a lot along the way too - my discovery in the past couple weeks - Lemon Cucumber
9. We have stronger immune systems. No one gave me this manual...doesn't ring true in our house...I am the one who is a "baby with the sniffles"...K1 and K2 are resilient.
10. We live longer. Among the world's population of those who are over 100 years old, 85 percent are women, according to the New England Centenarian Study. In general, women continue to live five to 10 years longer than men as well (no embellishments from your's truly here...what possibly could I add)
11. We're better managers, especially in this economy. This one is a little controversial, but a slew of experts are confident that women make greater bosses because they are better listeners, mentors, problem solvers, and multitaskers than their male counterparts. In a recent Daily News article, management expert Jay Forte said, "It's a very service-oriented economy, so you need employees to be motivated. Women are better connectors than men and more astute about knowing how to activate passion in their employees...(no embellishments from yours truly, seriously I don't think I could have put this better)
12. We invest better. A study of 100,000 portfolios showed that women's investment returns outperform men's, 18 percent to 11 percent. This could be because women are typically more cautious with their investment decisions and think longer term.
10/12 is not a bad score -- finally Cosmopolitan hit a chord which only Senge, Covey, Dan Pink, Karl Marx, Freud, Maslow and Cooley had hit...Love it !!!

Friday, June 1, 2012

Relationships etc. and Thinking in the Box

I was not exactly thrilled when I went to drop K2 in his KG class today and I felt a tug on my was his worldly classmate L (who almost feels like a mini adult)...she said um...k2's mom did you know A is K2's girlfriend, I didn't know how to react to that statement and yet again did something atypical of a mom (or typical, you tell me) an ostrich I stuck my head in the sand. K2 looked embarrassed and looked everywhere but at me...and quickly ran into his class his ears red. Have I grown so old, that I can't relate to the affections and affectations  of our young ones...when we were that young, we were not so worldly wise...I pray for a few more innocent years, spent laughing and playing with friends, watching birds and loving toys, chasing after bunny rabbits and negotiating for fossils from 
K2 has been bugging me for cupcakes the entire month of may...and most days I have been so tired that I have pretty much lay on the sofa like a log watching mindless TV ...with an extra appendage my laptop...dinners cooked few and far between, treats - this long weekend, I took the box of pancake mix that was staring accusingly at me and threw together a spectacular muffin -- want to have it for my guest, dessert...but of course!

You Need for "Think in the Box" Muffins
  • 3 Cups of Fiber One Complete Pancake Mix
  • 2 cups of Apple Sauce (Santa Cruz Organic)
  • Handful of Chopped Almonds (as much or as little as you can take)
  • Handful of Blueberries /Cranberries  (as much or as little as you can take)
  • 2-3 Tablespoon Honey
  • 8 oz Silk Almond Milk
Preheat the oven to 400 F Mix in a big bowl till all ingredients become one ...add to a greased muffin pan. Bake till done...about 25-30 minutes. K2 had 3 on the first day...Sometimes thinking within the box  is as creative and fulfilling as thinking outside the box...