25,26 & 27,there is a mile to get it even!


I have been super-duper busy over Friday, Saturday and Sunday! Don’t ask! I m going to go on and elaborate it myself anyway :P.

Friday was all about Pranaya’s Graduation dinner!

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The whole day I was excited along with a bunch of 10 other very enthusiastic ladies about the dinner! It was the first dinner after 2012 (my friend’s had pulled me out for drinks after a year and half pregnancy and post) that I was going to have to dress up. Trust me for a mother who really thinks way too much about her post pregnancy appearance and spare sometime for herself to look decent it’s a bigger ordeal than anything else. But, I was feeling good about the whole excitement around the getting ready part! Woke up early and did my 30 day ab challenege (day 5) workout for today, followed by tea and clearing up the dishwasher. My son woke up soon after so did not have enough time to blog in the early quiet hours of the morning.

After the usual chores, we had to visit Walgreens. I locked the door and we went downstairs only to notice that we had dropped our flash card (door security) somewhere. Like headless chickens we kept looking for it downstairs and finally found it inside our house! What a waste of energy! My son enjoyed it thoroughly. As I thought of it, it was really fun :P. We returned our stuff at Walgreens and came home. Udeet was very hungry and I had not catch a breath.

I fixed quick and easy Cheese Parathas for dinner as well as for Udeet’s lunch. I chose to eat a Tomato sandwich. Simple and quick! (I hear you sisters, tomato sandwich sounds such a heavenly treat :P).

It was already 2 by the time we finished lunch! Time just flies with children around. Quickly gave him a wash and put him to sleep. Now, it was a ladies only dinner that I was to attend so had to make my hair look awe-less (from awful :P) too! Washed them and thought I would iron them out once my son went out with husband in the evening. I decided to work on Inspire Us story for the week. However could not compose a draft that could please me.

I would like to thank all of the readers for their fantastic response to Meena’s & Jyothi’s stories. They both have such an inspiring tale that writing them and comprehending them was a big task for me for I was concerned of losing the message while rewording or extrapolating certain aspects of the story. The one I m working on is personally important to my being and hence missed the Saturday mark. But, I hope that such a wonderful audience would understand my gust of emotions and would wait for this one whenever it fits the bill!

Anyway, by the time I was exhausted and looked at the time, it was 4 pm already! I made some hot tea and was about to pour it into cups when Rohan arrived. Udeet woke up with his daddy’s voice! The guys had tea and milk (Udeet would like tea but was given Milk J) and left for the new home (supervision) by 6. Alas I was on my own and started to iron my hair! I was ready in 20 minutes. What next? My excitement was on cloud 9 and killing time was difficult. So decided to put a red nail polish :P! So much for the dignity of vanity J.

Janki arrived in time so we left for Sino’s but stopped at Cute Flowers for a bouquet! We were lucky to get a parking spot in the parking structure! The stars were shining! The other group was going to be late and Meena managed the locomotion with great care J What say Meena?

But it was fun! I enjoy a little glass of Riseling after ages! The food was in moderation but fun was unlimited! I had a blast with the girls! We chatted and yapped but it was fun! The good food and chatter was followed with exercise :P. Me and Janki were climbing up and down to find out the car. The confusing staggered floors! And we laughed some more!

By the time Janki dropped me home it was well over mid-night! Udeet was fast asleep and Rohan was on the verge of! A fun event and I slept like a cushion!

Good habits rarely die, don’t they? J. I woke up at 6.30 am on Saturday morning and did my workout for the 5th day of Ab challenge! I am totally looking forward to doing it every morning! It is exhaustive yet very relieving! I did not wish to be affected by a glass of wine after 25 days of regimen with slow and steady results. I fixed tea for us and milk for Udeet.

We had a long schedule sketched for today!

Have you guys been through same sort of busy routines while renovating houses? We have been running out to hardware stores, stone quarries and lumbers for last few weekends. And yet haven’t been able to finalize on so many things! Is it déjà-vu for all proud home owners?

Our lease in the current apartment ends 25th of this month! So, it’s crunch time for us! There is still a lot of stuff that needs to be taken care of! This I believe is just the architect in me or is it the home-owner? The thought of owing a home hasn’t still sunken in well. I am still not ready to pack off and leave this apartment! The sense of belonging they say takes a while to go!

But, first things first! We had to visit the Natural Stones on Brokaw and Ikea in Palo Alto both! We had boiled eggs and bread sandwich for breakfast. Headed out to the stone place where we finally found our shade of quartz! Yay! It was pricey! Yeah all things have a big branding price tag! I wonder why?? Our contractor figured out a better deal for us and we are all set to go with it!

At Ikea we walked and walked. Sometimes with my son in hands and sometimes on foot, but we walked for sure! And we managed to decide on a Billy bookcase for the study after reviewing all the options there! Oh btw, there are great blue pottery coffee/tea cups there! They are a steal J. So, if you haven’t been there in a while do visit the place! My husband and son were hungry at 4pm and we decided to have a quick bite at the cafeteria in Ikea. Though it is complete gluttony, their fries are so delicious! I ate a few but stuck to boiled veggies that were there. The Mac and Cheese was also good and my son enjoyed it. I did not get a chance to eat but my son loved their Strawberry short cake! It did look gorgeous!

After a day of walking our son was determined to go to Target and get hot-wheels! We eventually got a tiny hot wheels aero worth a dollar! He was happy and we were tired. Rohan told me to rest and not cook dinner! We got a to-go from Chaat Bhavan! We had dinner and very so tired that I was snoozing on sofa itself in minutes.What a day it was! I hope to see decent numbers on the weighing scale too! Though there was eating out, nothing beyond moderation and lots of walking! So, kept my fingers crossed for Monday!

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Sunday we decided to take it easy. I hadn’t worn saree yet so wore a green georgette Parsi Gara work saree when we went out.Me & Ru visited our new house! Got to show them this saree!

My kid has been asking me to make Spaghetti with meatballs for a good long time now! I did not wish to feed him frozen meatballs and we don’t eat red meat anyway. Recently on a food group on Facebook Ritu Shrivastava shared her Shammi Kabab recipe and my mind was set thinking after that! So I made my version of the classic! Mine is called Spaghetti Makhanwala (with no cream or butter or milk with Shammi Kabab (Chicken patties made with little oil on pan) meatballs!

The adventure worked!! My family loved it!!  The whole whacky combination worked! I m so excited to share it with all of you!  I was looking for a perfect shami kabab recipe for a long time! Ritu’s recipe for those kababs was deliciously perfect! Udeet loved them J. So instead of just a thank-you, tell me when you could come over and eat this with me! I will be glad to have you over!

We had to visit our cousins Bageshree and Sameer today since Bageshree’s parents came from India early this week. It was so much fun to spend time with folks from back home. Udeet kept Sameer on toes and made sure he shared all his gardening tips with him.

It was really late by the time we came home. We weren’t really hungry so had hot chocolate while Udeet rejoiced on the leftover Spaghetti Makhanwala (with no cream or butter or milk with Shammi Kabab (Chicken patties made with little oil on pan) meatballs!

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What a weekend it was! Amazing J Ahh missed my 6th day workout today but I m going to skip the rest day on Tuesday instead J.

Sino’s 2015: The Glutton in me!


“I believe that life is a celebration, a celebration of being able to experience all shades of life. We all have our reasons to celebrate each colour of life, don’t we?”  This week surely has been a week of celebrations.

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Firstly, a gorgeous and talented fellow blogger Sandhya of Indfused nominated me for the Infinity Awards! Yay, I am so happy to be nominated that it took a while for me to actually blog about it, Sandhya thanks a million for the shout out and sorry for the delay in acknowledging J. I shall be blogging shortly the answers to all the questions as well as the names of 7 most promising bloggers!

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I m also glad to announce another happy moment of mention of appreciation from another lovely fellow blogger Chaitrali. Thank you girls for making it so special for me! Hoping to keep up to the faith and promise you hold in me!

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Third and most important reason for celebration is the Graduation of my friend Pranaya. She graduated this spring from NPU, CA. She is like a sister to me and I along with a lovely bunch of enthusiastic friends wanted to make it special for her. Graduation walks are very pristine. We arranged for a dinner and fun get together at Sino’s, Santana Row. Chatty friends dressed to dare and on a mission, what more does one need for a graduation dinner? Meena made sure that Pranaya got her beautiful surprise gift along with a bouquet that I got on behalf of all of us!

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An unexpected fourth celebration was all my friends decided to gift me wonderful gifts as a birthday presents (birthday was last month so this was totally unexpected!). Cannot thank them enough for making it such a precious moment for me!

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Sino’s is an absolute fun place! The ambience and vibe is definitely fresh and youthful. The bar and the eating arena are completely vibrant. Perfect use of red hues and lighting (read-not meant for photography :P) make it trendy. The next time thought I m going to make sure we book for the outdoor seating only! As the place gets busier, it was warmer in there. But, the music and cordial staff makes up for it! I was a bit confused to see babies in there. The loud music and drinks with babies?? Really? I m no judge to make passes but it did seem a bit odd. Poor baby L!

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The menu has decent options for vegetarians and Sino’s also substitutes meat with vegetarian/vegan alternatives if requested. However, the general tone of food tends towards a sweet-sour taste. The chicken lollipop was well cooked, crunchy on the exterior and moist on the inside but had a sweet after taste. The sauce and spring mix served along was tasty though. The seafood dumplings were good. I had a bite and realized (I know, have developed an allergy for prawns/shrimps all of sudden at puberty.) they have prawns so could not eat more, but they were delicious. But again, if you are a savory-spicy eater-that’s not the dish for you.

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We ordered Sea bass, Veg.fried rice, Eggplant Stir fry, Tofu curry,Fire Cracker Chicken and Veg.Noodles for main course. The firecracker chicken was a stunner! The chicken was smooth and silky. It had a perfect balance of sweet, sour and spicy! I loved this dish! The Sea Bass was well cooked, had a beautiful colour and had infused flavor from coconut milk. The tenderness of coconut milk definitely worked with the Sea Bass. The Sea bass needed some heat though. A little spice could have elevated the tenderness to another level. So needs improvement (Sino chefs I hope you are listening :P).

The fried rice was tasty and loaded with MSG :P. The Glutton in me wanted to ,but the hourglass in me stopped me from any more gluttony! The noodles were decent, nothing great about them again.

The drinks were great. I especially loved the Peach Martini my friend had ordered. It was citrusy and strong! Exactly how I love it! But I m on a strict diet, so nothing beyond a little glass of Riseling for me! Adventures need optimization, don’t they? J

I would give 5 on 5 for ambience, music and vibe! The food however was above average (thanks to the fried rice and firecracker chicken) so I would give a 3 out of 5. But, the drinks were great, so a big shout out to the bar-magician-you sure score 4 on 5!

If you are looking for quiet dinners, this is not the place! It’s a happening joint! Little Black dresses, casual shirts and trousers with dinner jackets, lots of music and great music! So, if you wish to have fun times with friends, it is a top on the list!

Caffe Riace 2015: The Glutton in me!


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Folks,I m a foodie at heart! I love to experiment new recipes and places in search of authentic flavours and delicacies. My recent weight loss regimen does not restrict me from my adventure! I have to be watchful of every morsel that goes into my mouth,that’s it. That kind of makes me picky when we go out into restaurants but also helps me choose newer options on the menu. And,there could not be a better way to learn about new tastes and aromas,isn’t it?

Introducing a new column into my blog ” The glutton in me”. This shall feature my journey into the food coma and back :).

My first destination feature : Caffe Riace,Palo Alto,CA.

My friends Ru & Me took me out for lunch on the Friday after my birthday to a place called Caffe Riace in Palo Alto,CA. The restaurant is located in a posh neighborhood with proximity to the University Avenue and Corporate offices there.

On a cloudy day, this SicilianItalian joint is a perfect date place with friends and loved ones. My son was with us and thought its not exactly a kid friendly restaurant,the staff was very cordial and polite. They offered my son a sheet with colouring space and he was happy.

The most delightful part of their ambience is the FIAT and the cart that’s parked in the outdoor seating for the restaurant as soon as one enters the place. My son had his eyes and heart glued to the car (Luigi from Cars is the same model,so you can imagine his excitement!).

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My friend Ru had picked up this place and been there before. We just followed her tips while selecting the menu.

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We were served home-made bread loaf and a black olive crushed and minced dip with it. It was the first time that I tasted a crushed olives. And,they tasted so good! Almost like chutney! (Whatt? Don’t be such a desi! I know you are thinking that,cannot help it :P)

We ordered an appetizer platter first. It was good enough for 4 of us. It had a bruschetta with fresh tomatoes and chopped parsley, roasted eggplant with cheese and olives and obviously tomato caprese with fresh Mozzarella.  I particularly enjoyed the eggplant. The herbs and seasoning was spot on. Unlike the usual belief (specially from my country) that Italian food is bland,the food here was spiced to perfection.It wasn’t hot,it was just balanced.

The stuart who was attending at our table recommended that they had specials for the day were extremely delicious. While reading out the menu for the day,we heard Salmon! And we were stuck there :P. Firstly all three of us love fish and we are on a weight loss journey together (My friend Me-remember Meena’s story? 🙂 so we decided to have a Warm Spinach Salad with Salmon with light vinaigrette and Chicken Veggie Pasta.

The Warm Spinach Salad had the crunch from the fresh baby spinach. I think that the spinach was shocked into ice-cold water as well that added to the crunch.  The vinaigrette was light and citrusy. I love a little citrusy-lemony taste to compliment the fish. The salmon was seared in rosemary and garlic butter. But not greasy. Sometimes,the seared fish are so greasy that the there is only one tone throughout. Oily and greasy! But,this was a refreshing change from the usually pan fish soaked in oil and salads dressed with drizzled rains of olive oil. We were lucky with this one 😛

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The Pasta was really delicious! The roasted garlic was just the punch one needs to elevate the pasta from bland to bold.My son loved it too! The pesto in the Pasta was very earthy and balanced. Again perfectly seasoned dish.

Featured imageThis is slightly on a pricey side so it’s not the joint one could visit frequently. But,its great. I’d give this place 3.5 stars for food and 4.5 stars for the ambience. The indoors are decent,but the outdoors were great. Had it not been so windy and cold that day,we would have loved to enjoy our luncheon outside.

I m not being a cynic here,so let me justify the 3.5 stars for the food. I have written rave reviews about food here until now,but haven’t given a 5 on 5 for the simple reason that the Cannoli was average taste wise. For the price that it was served,we could have enjoyed a better portion size and taste too.The cannoli cream was good but not rich. The part chocolate and part nuts dress-up looked beautiful but taste wise it just fell apart for us. So,it was good but could be better.

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Does anyone else think that Cannolis with cream tastes similar to Shrikhand-Puri? (A typical India sweet youghurt dusted with cardamom and saffron along with nuts and nutmeg served with a fried puffed  bread). Everytime I dig into a Cannoli,my mind just thinks about Shrikhand and Puri 😛 (I think its normal for a desi to behave like one. After all,we were raised in the heat and soil of our motherland and nothing could take that way from us 🙂

And last but not the least,I had a wonderful time with my friends! Any restaurant in the world cannot beat the fun out of unlimited chatter and yapping with friends 🙂 can it? Thanks girls for making it so special for me 🙂

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