Friday, 6 May 2016

Unsung Heroes!

Be it a movie star or a sports star or some other celebrity rising to fame, the media and everyone else celebrate them and acknowledge them. They become the headlines of every leading newspaper, and every radio station talks about them. The news on T.V also flash information about these heroes. We get to know so much information about them, even censored and unwarranted information about their personal lives. But have we ever wondered about so many other unsung heroes, who are struggling in their day to day life just to provide their family with two square meals a day.

One such hero is a man in his late 70’s, who I have been observing for close to 2 years now. He has a mobile cycle puncture shop at the footpath. All that he owns is an old rusted trunk with tools and other essential things for his business. He toils hard day in and day out. Be it sun or rain, he is there sharp at 10.30 AM in the morning. I have never once seen him take leave, at least whenever I take that route I always see him there standing tall and attending to his customers with a smile. I have to pass through this road every day on my way to office.  There is a traffic signal on that road, and I spend at least five minutes daily observing him. A series of questions swarm my mind like bees. For instance, how much does this man earn, as there are very less people who ride cycle these days. Is he only earning member of the family? Are there no children of his who can support him as he seems to be too old to be working? Or is he a self-made man who doesn’t want to depend on anyone for his needs? There are many more questions, yet I find no answers to them. I just wonder in silence about all this, till the signal turns green.

One such day, I was driving to office mumbling to myself about the traffic, the scorching heat, the work lined up to be completed etc. etc. In the midst of my thoughts, my eyes happened to look in the direction of this man, who was sweating profusely. He had no shelter, as his shop was on a footpath. Yet, he had a smile on his face, whenever he came across people. There was no trace of any frown, or disappointment. He was content It was then I realized that I was cribbing for no real reason, as even if I had work, I could still sit comfortably in my cubicle with centralized AC and complete all the work. I realized that I had my head gear on to protect myself from the heat, whereas the man had nothing covering his head. He just gulped down water from an old bottle and got to his work as he saw a customer approaching him. With his signature smile he attended the customer with ease and completed his work. These are the real heroes!! They are not acknowledged by anyone for the hard work they put in to survive and provide for their families. Nobody writes an article on them or no flashy headlines displays their names. I know there are many more people like this. But how often do we really go ahead and think about these people and plan to help them. These are the ones who do not beg on the streets. They work hard to survive, in spite of their age or health conditions.

This post is dedicated to that man and all the other people who toil hard to fulfill their basic needs and lead life with their head held high and a charming smile which reaches their eyes. Their smile and dedication is an inspiration to people to work hard and realize that nothing is impossible if we decide to do it. Such people also teach us to be happy and grateful for all that we have and to stop cribbing and take life as it comes!

A big salute to all the ‘Unsung Heroes’ all over the globe.


Friday, 29 January 2016

A Peppy Day of my Life!

Why Peppy? Read on to find out….

There was a Carnival held in our college to raise funds for the neighbouring Old Age home. A group of friends including me, decided to participate in the Carnival and put up a stall, so that the proceeds can be donated for the cause.

The question was what stall can we put up? Numerous suggestions were received by all, and many were rejected with stares, shocked and surprised expressions. Finally, we zeroed in on the ‘FOOD’ stall. Wow! Yummy! Peppy food was the first response we were getting from all.
We made arrangements to put up a stall and divided the responsibilities among us. Finally the D-day arrived. The stall was put up effortlessly and we were selling our food items (procured from the caterer) to the students who visited the carnival.

Everything was going on well. Our cash box was brimming with currency notes and coins. We had more customers coming to our stall and the food vessel was getting empty. There was this one particular guy who ordered food and kept coming back to order more things. In the rush and excitement, I did not concentrate much on his face, but got used to his voice, and whenever he came to order, knew that it was HIM.

In the meanwhile, one of my friend suggested that we procure more food from the nearby restaurant as there was much time left for the carnival to get over and we could earn more this way. After much talking, the onus of getting food came upon me. I agreed. I quickly went to the parking area where my bike was parked. But, my Peppy Pep (Scooty) decided to ditch me and hence had a flat tyre. Oh God!! I was disappointed. I kicked the tyre in a filmi style (influence of hindi  movies) and was moving towards the gate, when I heard a voice say ‘Excuse me’. The voice sounded familiar to me. I turned and recognized that it is the same guy who had been visiting our stall. I gave a puzzled look. He walked towards me and asked if I needed any help. I narrated my ordeal to him.  He flashed a big smile. Ah…that smile! That peppy smile, that killer smile…………I still can’t get over it even today.
I looked into his eyes and was mesmerised for a second. Finally I came back to my senses when he asked if he could take me to my destination. I was reluctant. But something in me told me to accept the ride. I said ‘YES’. 

We went to the nearby restaurant. We did not talk much on the way to the restaurant as it was the first time we had met. We came back on time and the entire food was sold. We were happy that we could collect a huge amount for the charitable cause. Our whole gang did a silly dance and gave a hi-five to each other and were about to close the stall, when I noticed the same guy standing at a distance and looking at me with the same smile on his face. I froze. That smile combined with those eyes sent me into a trance again. I saw him walking towards me. My friends were busy packing stuff and did not notice him. I went towards him and he passed on a chit with his mobile number to me, and said that if I felt that its right, then I can contact him. I was doing cartwheels in my mind. Something in me told me that he is ‘the prince charming’. I silenced all the voices in my head and took the number and ran back to my friends. 

Finally in the evening, I mustered up all the courage i had and messaged him. He messaged back. We became good friends. And one fine day, as destiny would have it, he proposed me. And I said ‘YES’. We got married after 3 years of courtship. And are living happily ever after………………!!

Thus, the peppy food in the food stall left a peppy taste not only on our tongue, but also a peppy memory in our mind that will last until we depart!!

This blog post is inspired by the blogging marathon hosted on IndiBlogger for the launch of the #Fantastico Zica from Tata Motors. You can apply for a test drive of the hatchback Zica today.

Thursday, 9 July 2015

Healthy Lifestyle is equal to Happiness

With fast food chains operating at every nook and corner of the city, it has indeed become very difficult for us to resist our temptations and follow a healthy diet and we end up eating these calorie dense foods. A nutritious diet becomes very important in such a scenario.

A balanced healthy diet not only results in a healthy body but also results in a healthy mind. Eating well will help to prevent variety of diseases and ailments and helps to maintain a healthy body weight. This will promote a feeling of well-being and provides a lot of positive energy.

A nutritional diet requires eating of different wholesome foods to manage the vitamins, minerals, carbohydrate and other nutrients consumed so that the nutritional requirements of the body are met. Taking a balanced meal improves the immune system and makes it strong, which in turn helps in fighting a lot of diseases.

The nutritional needs of the body can be fulfilled by including a good supply of whole grains, vegetables and fruits, along with smaller portions of dairy, sea food and meat products. Eating nutritious food also lessens the craving for the not-so-healthy calorie dense foods which just expand our waistline, and are not healthy in the long run.

A healthy diet promotes a healthy lifestyle and is regarded as the best weapon against cardio-vascular diseases, as it helps in keeping both weight and blood pressure in control, which are the two most important risk factors for heart disease.

The most significant factor of having a nutritional and balanced meal is weight loss or maintenance. This is a very common cause of worry among all, be it youngsters, middle aged or old age people. Instead of shelling out oodles of money for the weight loss programs, you can invest the same money in eating healthy. This will prove beneficial for a longer term and will make you strong and healthy and increase your lifespan. It will have a positive effect on your overall personality as you will be less stressed, happier and will age better.

Gradual weight loss is always better than 'Crash Diets'. Most crash diets aren’t healthy and prove to be detrimental to your body. Some of the nutritional compromises you make while following a crash diet will disturb the body mechanism and will slow down the metabolism process. Thus, you burn fewer calories and have less energy to perform the routine tasks. You also miss out on some of the important nutrients your body needs for doing the usual chores.

Crash diets will make you crave for more food which results in you being hungry all the time making you cranky and irritable. In most of the crash diets, you not only lose fat but also lose out on muscles (lean tissue) as well which might prove to be very harmful later.

Researchers have proved that people who follow a crash diet by missing out food or greatly cutting down on their daily calories tend to put on weight quicker than those who follow a healthy, long-term diet plan.  Also, some crash diets are so restrictive that you might not have the willpower to stick to them.

Crash diets can be quick-fix, but they come with dangerous and lasting negative health effects, whereas, following a healthy nutritional balanced diet will have only positive impact in your life.
There is also a very simple and effective nutritional diet which you can follow daily for a healthy lifestyle. Do check out for a healthy and simple Honey Diet.

Thursday, 11 June 2015

Grandma’s (Nanimaa Ke Nuskhe) Natural Secrets for Glowing Skin

#ComeCloser to Radiant Skin

In this present age of cosmetology and all the other harmful chemical products for your skin, there are only quite a few products that actually do not cause any harm to your skin. Nevertheless, I have always wondered about how people of the earlier generation used to maintain their skin.  They did not have any of the hi-fi products we use. All they had were some natural products at home, which would come to their rescue when they would face any skin problems. Yet, their skin was so smooth and radiant. HOW?? This was the question I always used to ask my paternal grandma as she had a clear and healthy skin.

Though she was in her early 80’s, her skin did not have much wrinkles and it had a healthy glow. She would blush if anybody complimented her on her beauty. Her cheeks would turn pink. When asked, how she managed to maintain such a beautiful skin without going to the beauty parlour and having the regular facials done, she would just say I used to do natural facials at home.

When going out to a party or function, they depended on a very reliable source that is ‘VICCO Turmeric Cream’. Yes, you heard it right. This is the most trusted ayurvedic brand till date and has amazing effects on the skin and leaves it healthy and glowing. It is my favorite cream till date.

Coming back to the natural skin care tips, which were passed on to me by my Grandmom. The reason being, as a teen, I had massive breakouts and my constant picking and poking of the boils on my skin, made them worse and they would leave scars on my skin. This distressed me to no end.  That’s when my grandma started sharing her beauty tips with me, so that I could pass it on to our next generations and the pearls of wisdom for beautiful skin would continue to remain in our family.

Here are 10 best natural tips which she passed on to me and I continue using them till date.

1.       Besan - Wash your face regularly with water and Besan (Chickpea powder) so that the dirt and oil is kept at bay. This will lessen the pimple breakouts.

2.       Sandalwood – Mix 1 tsp of sandalwood powder with 2 or 3 drops of rose water and apply this pack daily on the pimple prone area to reduce pimple/acne and to get a glowing and even tone. This pack helps in lightening dark spots.

3.       Honey and Turmeric – These are the best natural products which we can find almost in every home. Turmeric acts as an antiseptic and prevents the spread of bacteria and honey cleanses the skin and provides a natural glow.

4.       Tomato Juice - Cut a tomato into half.  Apply the juicy area of the tomato on the pimples. Hold it for two to three minutes and repeat the same after five minutes. Do this twice a day for three to four days to effectively remove pimples.

5.       Egg white face mask - Just take the egg white from an egg and apply it generously to the affected areas of your face and skin. This is a natural skin tightening agent and will prevent wrinkles.

6.       Lemon Juice – Cut lemon into half and dip it into honey. This will serve as a natural exfoliating agent and will prevent blackheads on the skin.

7.       Raw Milk: Raw or un-boiled milk is the best way to get soft and supple skin. Apply it all over your face and leave it for 10 mins. This serves an anti-tan and helps to remove the skin tan easily.

8.       Curd – Add a few drops of lemon to curd and apply it all over your face for a fair and glowing skin.

9.       Get Adequate Rest and Sleep – This is the most important health tip as adequate rest and sleep are important aspects for fresh and supple skin.

10.   Drink lots of water – Finally, this is the best and the easiest beauty tip, as drinking lots of water will help keep your skin hydrated and this will avoid most of the skin problems.

The above tips have been tried and tested and have brought wonderful results to my skin.  Apply them regularly to see the results. The best part of using natural products is that they do not have any side-effects and constant use will only improve the skin and not cause any damage to the skin.
So go ahead and try these tips for a younger and beautiful looking skin.

PS: To know other secrets of healthy looking skin, do visit - Vicco Turmeric Cream.

Monday, 25 May 2015

Birthday wishes to my dearest sister

Dear Baaji,

On this day as you celebrate your birthday, I felt that it’s a perfect time to tell you how much I love you. (You know am bad at expressing in person!!).

I just wanted to thank you for all the love and support you have been ushering throughout the years on your two lil sisters. Thank you for being so patient with me and to show me by example how to be a better person. I want to tell you I’ll love and admire you all my life as you are a very special person to me.

I want to say through this note, how much your presence has meant in my life, as I have always looked up to you for everything. You were and are still like a second mom to me, and now to my sonnie. You have been a perfect mom to him as well, filling my absence with your warmth of your love and care. I owe you my life.

Over the years, my love for you has kept on increasing with each passing day. And no wonder, my son is so much in love with you. You are truly an amazing aunt cum mom to him too. Words are not enough to express how amazing I feel have you as my elder sis. I can never thank the Almighty enough for this favour.

Thank you so much Baaji for everything you gave me, the little and big sacrifices you made for me. You are the greatest; I can never forget the great times we spend together and every day that we enjoy together. The late night chats, gossips, the giggling and imitating of people and what not. The list is endless. Thank you for patiently listening to my rants and vents.

Whenever I needed you, you were always there for me, fully willing to support me through thick and thin. You are my best friend and confidante. And probably that is the reason my life has been an easy go most of the times.

I pray to God to bless you with good health and spirit so we can enjoy for many more years an unforgettable day like this. Even though we have our different lives, the sisterly love lasts in our hearts which will be an eternal bond in every circumstance of our lives.

May happiness reign in your heart always. May you get whatever you have wished for in your life.

And last but not the least, I want to you to know how much I love you, how much I look up to and respect you and how I can’t imagine my life without you in it. Not even for a second.

You deserve all the happiness and much more in life.

Love you loads.

Your lil sis.

Tuesday, 12 May 2015

My Little Plum's First Day at School

I was very restless throughout the night with a hundred questions running in my mind, dreaming of teachers, schools, books etc. I turned and tossed on the bed yet could not sleep. The alarm went buzz and I woke up with a start to see that it was already 6.00 am in the morning. School re-opens....Yes!! for my dearest little son. He is setting his feet into the Playgroup wing. I immediately closed my eyes and offered my prayers and thank you to God for a new day and then looked at my little bundle of joy, who was sleeping next to me peacefully without any of these worries.

I was just thinking of a list of tasks I need to accomplish to make him ready to school, though the preparation had been done the previous day itself. But before that I have to complete my tasks so that I can get him ready on time. I planned to take a shower, thinking that the poor baby, in fact babies (including hubby) will get a few more minutes to sleep. The mother in me was not allowing me to disturb my son’s sleep. I saw my dearest hubby looking at me from the corner of his eyes and I happily designated the task of bathing our son to him. The innocent yet a sad ‘YES’ from him was worth watching. Finally, my rock star got ready by 8.30 am after a lot of coaxing and running around.

Both I and hubby prayed together for our son’s success as our son was setting his first foot in the wide world of knowledge. From this day starts his ‘journey of education’, exclaimed the proud father. We clicked a few photographs and took him to his grandparent’s place where his uncle and aunt and sister were waiting to accompany him to school. The best part is his cousin sister (my niece) is in the same class as his, and my little princess also starts her journey of education.

Both of them were happy looking at each other all dressed up and were ready to go to school. Both the kiddos received blessings from their grandparents. We left home and reached school on time. The school was decorated and there were a lot of parents standing outside the gate peeping in to get a view of their little ones. I could relate with each one of them, after all we all were sailing in the same boat.

I could hear some kids crying. My heart was pounding fast. I looked at my son who was admiring the decoration around him and my tension was put to rest. I handed over my son to the teacher, all the while whispering silent prayers in my heart and blessing my son to get all the happiness in this world. Tears were battling their way out through my eyes but I had to hide them to avoid embarrassment. Both my son and niece went inside their classrooms without any fuss. I could sense that my husband too was a bit upset. But was hiding it gracefully and happily clicking pictures. This was one of the best days of our lives.

No wonder they refer the kid’s first day at school as 'umbilical cord cut for the second time'!!

This memory is still fresh in my mind and will remain so, forever!!

PS: “I am sharing my #MemoriesOfMotherhood with Bio Oil and BlogAdda. This Mother’s Day check out the Yummy Mummy calendar and  make a similar calendar of your own using the Bio Oil App.

Friday, 8 May 2015

A life lesson well taught...

“The hand that rocks the cradle moves the world”.

This proverb covers the entire gist of how important a mother’s role is in the life of a child. Mother is the first teacher. She spends her maximum time with the child. The moment the child is placed in her arms, the child becomes the center of her world. All her activities are surrounded around the child; her schedules, tasks, and even a good sleep.

Since, the child is with the mother most of the time, the child follows her actions and it is a good opportunity for her to create a lasting impression in her child’s mind. So many famous personalities like the great scientist Thomas Edison and the great warrior Sivaji were inspired by their mothers to become what they were. And rest is history, as we all know.  Mother has the power to shape the present and future of her child.

From teaching the first letter to the child to making the child learn basic things, holding the finger to give support to the shaky legs and instilling confidence in the child to walk. Name it, and the mother is the teacher for all the life skills we learn. Most often, we underestimate these basic lessons, but if we observe closely our life would have been nothing without it. The child sees the world through the mother’s eyes. She plays a critical role in the child’s understanding of the environment and surroundings.

There is another famous saying which comes to mind which i can't stop mentioning. The saying goes like this ‘God could not be everywhere, therefore he made mothers’. All the religious scriptures elaborate much on the reverence and status of a mother. Imagine, who else could patiently wait for 9 months and bear all the hardships, lose out on shape, sleep, appetite, and not to forget the excruciating pain she undergoes during the labor. It is only the mother. Even after going through so much pain, her child is her most prized possession. Such is the amazing relationship of a mother and her child.

From the time of birth, the mother creates a permanent impression on the child. If she instills positivity and honesty, the child develops an optimistic view and learns to lead life in a positive and honest way and vice versa. Nobody can deny the role a mother plays in her child’s life.

This makes me recall an incident from my childhood when i was around 10 years. There were some guests invited for dinner and mom had done a lot of grocery shopping to make something special for the guests. The grocery included a vinegar bottle which was packaged in glass container. I entered the kitchen to drink water and out of curiosity was looking at the bottle. As luck would have it, I dropped the bottle of vinegar in the kitchen and did not know what to do. My head was spinning. I had multiple thoughts running in my mind as I knew that confessing the crime would actually incur the anger of my mother and she would treat me with a long lecture of how I was irresponsible and did not care for her. Sigh! Not to forget the emotional melodrama that would follow. I was also thinking of the possibility of getting a whack or even worse a slap, as my mother had been running around gathering things for the dinner and she was not in her usual patient mode.

I was in a fix. I just picked up the glass pieces and in the process hurt myself. But I did not have the time to indulge in self-pity. I could do that later too after finishing the job in hand. I took a kitchen cloth and carefully wiped away the vinegar so that no traces or evidence of my crime is left back. I looked around to make sure that nobody had seen me and I gave a pat on my back that I had accomplished my mission successfully. The day continued as usual. My mother went to the kitchen and started her preparations. And the unfortunate time (for me) arrived for her to use the vinegar. She realized that it wasn’t there. I was standing there as she searched around for the bottle. She didn’t get it. She thought for a while and guessed that she must have missed it while bringing the groceries. But, later she realized that she had kept it separately on the counter to prevent it from falling. She turned towards me and enquired, since I was the only one present at home that time. With a puppy face, I denied and refused to own up my crime.

My mother told me ‘Accepting mistakes and being honest is an attribute of the strong people’. She left me at that. I was standing at the same place. The words echoed in my mind. The voices in my head were telling me not to confess and make a fool of myself as I would face double insult, since I had denied earlier. But my mom’s words kept on ringing in my ears. After battling with my inner voices for a while, I decided that I was not a coward, and if I had committed a mistake I should be brave enough to accept the mistake and apologize. I wanted to show that I am strong and not a coward. Finally, with tears filled in my eyes I stammered and confessed my crime. To my surprise, my mom hugged me and told me that she knew that I had done it as she could hear the sound of the bottle breaking. She also saw the small injury i had inflicted upon myself while picking up the glass pieces. She started nursing my wound. I was shocked at this revelation. I stood there still. She continued talking and told me that she was testing me and just wanted to see if I would be honest and own up my mistake. The intenstity of my tears became double. I hugged her tightly to let go my guilt. This lesson in life has remained fresh in my memory.

This incident has helped me become a better person. Many times though, I have paid a huge price for being honest. However, I don’t have any regrets as it has made me stronger to face my fears and has given me inner peace and satisfaction.

Thanks Ma for everything! Words are not enough to express how amazing I feel to be your daughter. Love you loads.

 PS: I am writing a letter about how a mother teaches honesty to her child with the Max Life Insurance i-genius #YoursHonestly activity in association with BlogAdda.