Tuesday, December 31, 2013

***Happy New Year to all***

Posted by M.S. at 5:27 AM 0 comments Links to this post
As the year comes to an end I jot down my last day thoughts of this year 2013. Wishing all a very happy and blessed New Year 2014. We pray for Peace and tranquility on this earth.




Monday, December 30, 2013

*A New Beginning ~ 2014*

Posted by M.S. at 3:47 AM 0 comments Links to this post




A new beginning ... to start A new Life. Okay I am back again with my blogging after a small while, which is packed full in my small brain :).  Again those who have survived 2013 emerges into this new year with the whole new phase infront of all of us!!

Why do we celebrate new year? 2014 - Is it just a number or does it signify something more? 
The Mayans predicted that the world will end in 2012 but yet here I am writing this post, and you reading it in end of 2013. So does this give me a reason to celebrate that I am not dead as prophesied? Or is it just one of the trends and mores of the society? I think not.

This new year is all about new beginnings, new relations, new thoughts and new memories if we want. Yes the year 2013 was good and brought its fair share of memories, and there's no denying that those memories will stay with us for the rest of our lives. However, the excitement of what lies ahead and how much happier the next year has the potential to be depends on our thinking.

And being surrounded by my lovely family and friends I care about, being happy for them, and seeing everyone happy is the meaning of happiness for me. New year is just another milestone that reminds us to forget the bad things that happened the previous year. It gives an opportunity to reflect back upon the things to be thankful for that you still have and may have in the future, and stop moaning about what didn't happen ... Because lets face it - That chapter is closed. Time to write a new one.

Happy New Year to all my blog fans and others around the globe.



Tuesday, December 17, 2013

~*Merry Christmas to all *~

Posted by M.S. at 3:48 AM 0 comments Links to this post


Blogger Widgets Blogspot Tutorial ******* Noche de Paz - Villancico (+playlist)
MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL MY LOVELY 
WWW FRIENDS
Sparkles and baubles, fairies and elves,  tinsel and starlight and gifts on my shelves! 
I love my followers, they are the presents to my Christmas tree! The best time of the year for me is CHRISTMAS ~
I just love the festive atmosphere where ever you go there are fairy lights twinkling adorning the houses and streets and smilling at you:)
I stay in the country where throughout the year we have summer type season - so would always day dream to be in snow in christmas. Ahhh one day to have a cozy cottage in the wilderness and enjoy this bliss!!
I would love to see through my window the drizzle of snow like fairy dust. Covering every place with white fluffy blanket!
Cuddle in my bed near the window to have the best view always. 
The warmth of the twinkling of the lights on the christmas tree with 
gift splendour around it. 
Sit in front of the warm fireplace with my family and enjoy the 
hot chocolate with ginger cookies`bliss.
Sun peeping out on the horizon through the trees and 
giving a warm glow of fire on snow.
Hubby & children preparing for Christmas
What about the Jolly Rolly Santa Clause coming with the presents!!
Watching the sparrows nest & feed on my hanging feeder, with the tamed wildlife around snuggling near the warmth:)
 
Making happy snowmen with my family
Enjoying the Serenity of the white world around me.
For now will just have a cuppa in front of the cozy fireplace and go on dreaming... 
See ya folks and enjoy your white christmas
The list is unlimited and it will fill up the whole page but will leave 
with this few to do list when I get my dream fulfilled.... 
what a bliss it will be ahhhhhh!!!!!

Friday, October 11, 2013

*Dates Cookies*

Posted by M.S. at 3:01 AM 0 comments Links to this post
Preparation time : 20 minutesCooking time : 25 minutes

Ingredients

for the dough:2 cups butter or 400 g, softened
5 cups plain flour or 700 g
1 teaspoon lemon zest, grated
1½ cups icing sugar or 200 g
4 egg yolks

for the filling:1½ cups date paste or 300 g
1 tin NESTLÉ® Cream or 170 g
2½ cups ground almonds or 250 g

Preparation:Mix the soft butter with the flour using your hands until the mixture is homogenous.
Make a hole in the middle of the dry mixture. Add lemon zest, icing sugar and egg yolks. Use your fingertips to mix the ingredients together.
Mix the dough well until it can be formed into ball then knead it lightly pressing with hands until it is smooth. Divide into 2 equals balls, cover and chill for at least ½ hour or until almost firm.
Meanwhile, combine in a bowl the date paste, NESTLÉ® Cream and ground almond and mix well until well combined.
Generously sprinkle flour over the first dough and place it between two sheets of greaseproof paper. Gently roll it between the papers to get 3mm thick dough. Repeat the same process for the second dough.
Place the first one over a large tray keeping greaseproof paper below and removing the upper one. Spread and press the date mixture evenly all over the rolled dough.
Turn the second rolled dough over the date paste mixture by removing the upper paper and keeping the below one to ease turning the dough over the date paste mixture. Press gently and place in the freezer for few hours until it freezes.
Slice out bite shapes using a sharp knife, place cookies 1cm apart on greased large baking tray. Keep aside to defrost and bake in a 200˚C preheated oven for 20-25 minutes or until top becomes light brown.

Remove from oven and set aside to cool.

Cooking tips : Brush the top with beaten eggs and sprinkle with slightly toasted sesame seeds before baking.

Photo: Dates Cookies Recipe 

Preparation time :     20 minutes
Cooking time :     25 minutes

Ingredients

for the dough:

2 cups butter or 400 g, softened

5 cups plain flour or 700 g

1 teaspoon lemon zest, grated

1½ cups icing sugar or 200 g

4 egg yolks

for the filling:

1½ cups date paste or 300 g

1 tin NESTLÉ® Cream or 170 g

2½ cups ground almonds or 250 g

Preparation

Mix the soft butter with the flour using your hands until the mixture is homogenous.

Make a hole in the middle of the dry mixture. Add lemon zest, icing sugar and egg yolks. Use your fingertips to mix the ingredients together.

Mix the dough well until it can be formed into ball then knead it lightly pressing with hands until it is smooth. Divide into 2 equals balls, cover and chill for at least ½ hour or until almost firm.

Meanwhile, combine in a bowl the date paste, NESTLÉ® Cream and ground almond and mix well until well combined.

Generously sprinkle flour over the first dough and place it between two sheets of greaseproof paper. Gently roll it between the papers to get 3mm thick dough. Repeat the same process for the second dough.

Place the first one over a large tray keeping greaseproof paper below and removing the upper one. Spread and press the date mixture evenly all over the rolled dough.

Turn the second rolled dough over the date paste mixture by removing the upper paper and keeping the below one to ease turning the dough over the date paste mixture. Press gently and place in the freezer for few hours until it freezes.

Slice out bite shapes using a sharp knife, place cookies 1cm apart on greased large baking tray. Keep aside to defrost and bake in a 200˚C preheated oven for 20-25 minutes or until top becomes light brown.

Remove from oven and set aside to cool.

Cooking tips :     Brush the top with beaten eggs and sprinkle with slightly toasted sesame seeds before baking.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

~Relationship~

Posted by M.S. at 2:42 AM 0 comments Links to this post
 


Always remind yourself that all relationships have a higher purpose. 
God created them to inspire us to understand and remember who we really are. After all, if you had no one to relate to, how could you know yourself? 
That is why all relationships are sacred.~Michael Massaro




Wednesday, August 14, 2013

~Honey & Lime Mint Iced Tea~

Posted by M.S. at 10:45 AM 0 comments Links to this post
Ingredients: 
5 cups water 
4 tea bags 
1/2 cup fresh mint leaves 
6 tsp sugar (to taste) 
2 tsp honey (to taste) juice of 
1 lemon 

Direction: 
Boil water in a tea pot and add tea bags, mint and sugar. 
Cover the tea pot and let it brew for 3-5 minutes. 
Strain out the tea bags and mint leaves. 
Pour into tall glases half filled with ice. 
Add honey, stir and mix well. 
Chill and add freshly squeezed lime juice before serving. 

Sit back, relax and enjoy your drink.

*Tips for Lips*

Posted by M.S. at 1:59 AM 0 comments Links to this post

 

15 Beauty Tips for Dark or Black Lips



The problem of pigmented, dark or black lips is not uncommon… especially when all of us crave for soft, smooth and pinkish lips.
But why do the lips turn dark? Or we must say black?!?! Why does this so called lip discoloration happen?
Few of the reasons could be due to lack of proper care as well as an unhealthy lifestyle. They are said to be few of the reasons that can lead to a loss of the natural lip color, making them appear dark or black.
remedies for dark lips

How to avoid getting black lips:

getting black lips

1. Say ‘NO’ to smoking:

Every beauty tip for lips says  that nicotine causes darkening of the lips and lip discoloration. Otherwise also smoking is known to cause cancer and other diseases.
Drink less Coffee

2. Drink less Coffee:

Excess consumption of tea and coffee can turn lips black in addition to staining your teeth. So, limit your caffeine intake, in order to avoid your lips from acquiring a darker hue. 
Minimize Sun exposure

3. Minimize Sun exposure:

Exposure to the sun also causes lip darkening as there is an increased amount of melanin pigment in the lips. Ensure that you use lip products with SPF/UV protectors, if you are going to spend time outside. 
lipsticks for beautiful lips

4. Check your Lipsticks:

Prolonged and excessive use of lipsticks and lip cosmetics, especially lower-quality ones can also cause lip pigmentation.
Use lipsticks sparingly (apply only when you need them the most) and always buy lip products from reputed brands.
Ensure that you check for the expiry date and not use expired lipsticks or lip products.
Look for one or more of these ingredients in your lipsticks: Shea butter, clarified butter, vitamin E and jojoba oil. These moisturize your lips and prevent them from drying out.
Always remove your lip makeup using a good lip makeup remover or olive/almond/coconut oil. 
natural lip scrub

5. Scrub the Use a natural lip scrub:

at least once every week to remove dead cells and dry skin from your lips, and improve blood circulation. You can mix 5-6 drops of olive oil and 1 tsp sugar and use this for exfoliating your lips. Once you rinse off, apply healing lip butter or your favorite lip moisturizer.

6. Exfoliation:

Use some Vaseline on a baby toothbrush to gently exfoliate your lips. This can be done daily.

7. Hydrated at all time:

Keep your lips moisturized and hydrated at all times.
For retaining the natural color of lips, it is essential to maintain hydration levels by drinking plenty of water throughout the day.
In winters when we often tend to drink less water and that is when dehydration is noticed. Make sure to avoid this by drinking a decent amount.
Also, add high water-content fruits to your diet such as cucumber, watermelon, orange, grapefruit and lemon.
Lips are more delicate than the skin on any other part of our body. Hence, they need to be kept moist to avoid developing dryness and cracks, especially when they could possibly increase the chances of darkening the lips.
Use lip balms containing beeswax or cocoa butter as these seal in the moisture of your lips. 
dark lips treatment

8. Don’t suck your lips:

Dermatologists advise us not to suck or lick the lips, so as to keep them wet. If not taken care, this will further dry them out, leading to darkening of the lips. Even the habit of biting lips should be avoided as there is the risk of damaging them.
healthy diet for dark lips

9. Maintain healthy diet:

Vitamin deficiency can also lead to lip discoloration. Hence, maintain a healthy diet and eat lots of fruits and green vegetables.
Vitamin C intake is also essential for getting rid of lip pigmentation; hence eat foods rich in this vitamin.

Other Causes of Pigmented Lips:

10. Avoid Chlorinated water:

Chlorinated water could also be responsible for pigmented lips.

11. Genetic:

Lip pigmentation can also be genetic. So, in case, you have black or dark lips right from birth, there is not really much to be done except cosmetic surgery perhaps.

Some Natural Tips to treat Dark or Black Lips:

1. Apply almond oil on your lips before bedtime as this helps to lighten lips, thus reducing discoloration.
2. You can also mix lemon/lime juice with almond oil and apply for the same purpose.
3. Daily application of cucumber juice would also help lighten dark lips.
4. Another tried and tested remedy is regularly applying a mixture of lime juice, glycerin and honey and leaving it overnight.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

*EID MABRUK*

Posted by M.S. at 2:52 AM 0 comments Links to this post



Eid comes to us... With profusing joy. 
 Fragrant with the sweet freshness of roses and jasmines, 
 What a blessed month Ramadhan has been, 
 In its wake leaving a divine gift of Eid-ul-Fitr, Sacred and auspicious, 
 To fill our heart and homes with tremendous joy! 
 As the Eid Takbeera resounds In masjids all over, 
 Bright lights twinkling in the silver night, 
 And in the morning when the khutbo is recited, 
Wh...at an immense feeling of joy, 
 And sev-khurmo (Vermicel) being served, 
 Indeed Eid-ul-Fitr has arrived! 
 With tears of gratitude, 
 We beseech to Allah, 
 To accept our ibadat and magfirat, 
 And thank for each and every nemat, 
 "EID" Is An Event When We Share Our Joys And Happiness, 
With Our Special Ones. 
 So On This Happy Event How I Can Forget My Special Ones.
I Wish That This EID Will Bring Prosperity And Unity For Us all. 
Happy Eid-Ul-Fitr 
*EID MUBARAK TO ALL AROUND GLOBE*



~Detox Drink~

Posted by M.S. at 2:19 AM 0 comments Links to this post

You will love this tasty-home made-zero calorie-natural apple-cinnamon detox drink. It boosts your metabolism and has many more advantages. Put down your other calorie packed drinks and try this for a week, you will feel the energy boost and also drop weight!

Saturday, July 27, 2013

~Tamarind Drink~

Posted by M.S. at 1:33 AM 0 comments Links to this post
First off is my favorite ramadan drink, the pairing of sweet and sour is so refreshing, add some rosewater and the aroma alone is enough to make you feel revivied

Sweet tamarind drink

1 package Tamarind (200 grams)
1 liter water
Sugar to taste
Rosewater (optional) or add mint leaves.
Break apart the tamarind into small segments
Place it in a pot, add the water and 2/3 cup of sugar.
Bring the water to a boil over medium heat then lower the heat and allow to simmer for 5 minutes.
Turn off the heat and allow the mix to cool for 15 minutes.
Strain the tamarind mix through a fabric with fine weave or some coffee filters.
Taste the drink and adjust the sugar to your liking
Cool the drink in the fridge.
Add the rosewater right before serving

Enjoy in Ramadan with very refreshing drink!!

Friday, July 19, 2013

~Candy~

Posted by M.S. at 12:39 PM 0 comments Links to this post

Apricot pistachio candy



6 ounces dried apricot
cold water
5 tablespoons reserved water from cooking the apricot
2 cups granulated sugar
3 envelops unflavored gelatine
1 cup cold water
1 cup coarsely chopped pistachio
1 tablespoon rosewater


Butter an 8-inch square pan.

In a large saucepan over medium heat, add dried apricots and enough cold water to cover apricots by 1 inch. Bring to a boil; boil 1 minute, stirring constantly. Turn heat to low and simmer another 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until apricots are soft. Remove from heat.
Drain off liquid, reserving 5 tablespoons apricot liquid; set aside. In a food processor, puree apricots with reserved apricot liquid until smooth. Return apricot mixture back to saucepan over low, add sugar and heat and stir just until sugar is melted. Remove from heat.
In a small bowl, combine gelatin and cold water; add to apricot/sugar mixture, stirring constantly until dissolved. Add rose water and pistachio; stir until well blended.
Pour into prepared pan; cool at least 2 hours but preferably overnight. With an oiled knife, cut into 1-inch squares, then roll in powdered sugar.
Store, covered, in the refrigerator.



Makes 64 candy squares. (I made 1/3 the recipe)
Thank you so much Lisa and Mandy for the wonderful challenge..it was really a wonderful experience.
I have copied this recipe is from a very Sawsan who is a very talented chef and I admire her 

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Sev Recipe

Posted by M.S. at 1:41 AM 0 comments Links to this post
Sev is a noodle type crispy snack made from gram flour. It is particularly used in many Indian food and snack preparations as main ingredient or garnishing agent. It can be prepared at home very easily. This recipe uses Sevai Machine to prepare it at home. This machine comes with many pre-fabricated molds to prepare sev of varying thickness. We recommend to use mold which prepares thinnest strands.
Nylon Sev

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 30 minutes
Ingredients:
2 cups Bengal Gram Flour (chick pea flour/besan)
1/3 teaspoon Black Pepper Powder (optional)
1 pinch Asafoetida (hing)
1/2 teaspoon Red Chilli Powder
1/3 teaspoon Turmeric Powder
1 teaspoon Hot Cooking Oil (for dough)
1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons Water
Salt
Oil (for deep frying)
-->
Directions:
  1. step-1Sieve the gram flour in a large bowl. Add black pepper powder, asafoetida, red chilli powder, turmeric powder, hot cooking oil and salt and mix well.
  2. step-2Add around (1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons) water in small quantities and make smooth and soft dough. Taste for salt and add more if required.
  3. step-3Take a sevai machine, fit mold with thinnest hole and grease its entire inner surface with oil, fill it with prepared dough and close its lid tightly.
  4. step-4Heat oil in a deep frying pan or kadai over medium heat for deep frying. Hold machine over pan, turn handle of machine and press out thin strands into hot oil. As strands are starting to fall into the oil, slowly move machine in a circular motion (like preparing jalebi).
  5. step-5Deep fry both sides for around 2 minutes on a medium flame until it becomes crisp and light brown. Drain and take it out using perforated spoon and transfer to plate.
  6. step-6
  7. Repeat same process for remaining dough. Let it cool down at room temperature for 10-15 minutes before breaking it into pieces. Store in an airtight container and use it for up to 2 weeks.
Tips and Variations:
  • Adjust the quantity of red chilli powder according to your taste to make it more or less spicy.
  • Add palak and pudina puree while making dough to make a palak pudina sev.
  • Add boiled potato and crushed garlic while making dough for a nice flavor.
  • Use same amount of rice flour or both rice flour and gram flour instead of gram flour for variation.
Taste: Salty and mild spicy snack.
Serving Ideas: Sprinkle it over chat, bhel, dahiwada, khaman dhokla, sev khamani, panipuri, poha etc. and make them yummy. You can also use it to prepare Indian chavanu mixture, poha chivda and sev tomato curry.

Always Dream

I want to curl up here and enjoy my leisure time with a book and cup of hot chocolate /coffee late and relax whilst the Sunshine warms me and the breeze plays through my hair.







My Dreams:)