Movie Review : Balupu

balupu

Vinod is back in hyderabad and it’s movie time! 🙂 He is a huge movie buff and I just love enjoy doing anything- when it’s with him. I do not harbor any particular interest in movies, but i go along to have good time with him. And most of the times, the movies prove my decision correct.

Recently, we watched Prema Katha Chitram and it was a blast. Today, encouraged by the positive reviews, we booked tickets online. After feeding Saanvi, we just entered the theater 5 seconds before the movie started. But then, finally BEFORE the movie started!! That was indeed a good start to the movie.

Balupu – it has almost all the things working for it, except music by Thaman. Sorry, please do what you are better at – background score. Mind blowing background score and exceptionally crappy music.

The story is not new to Tollywood : First half engages in decent comedy and the interval scene introduces us to Faction. The second half was more blood shed but a twist in the faction made it worth watching without any effort.  Highlights of the movie are Gangnam Style dance by Sruthi Hasan & Brahmanandam and IPL Tune Dance at the end, interwoven into the last fight sequence. I did not expect them at all and was in for a pleasant surprise.

The bonding between Prakash Raj & Ravi Teja is one of the highlights of the movie. The first half shows their father – son relationship, while the second half shows their rivalry. Both of them carried their roles with elan. Sruthi Hasan was such a treat to watch – I just loved her energy in all the comedy scenes with Brahmanandam. The effort she’s put in maintaining herself can be well seen on the screen and deserves special appreciation. Anjali was average, her standout moment was the last hospital scene.

All said and done – Forget your baggage back home, take the ticket and go for a fun ride!! If you are a moderate movie fan and not a strictly-art-lover, just watch the movie and enjoy.

Have a good day and keep rocking!!

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Guest Post: Spicy and Easy Rasam

You all must be wondering on who agreed to guest post on my obscure and pot-pourri blog. Well, where  there is a wish, there is a way. My sister in law is a great cook, simply for the interest with which she cooks. When you watch her cook, it is no less than a potter making his favorite clay model or a painter painting his best work so far. So, when I ate this lovely err spicy rasam, I kind of blackmailed her to write this post for me. Here’s the pic – made the rasam again today! 🙂
rasam
So, what are you waiting for? Try this out for your family today and tell us how they liked it!
Ingredients:
Masoor dal – 1 handful
Tomatoes(Cut length wise) – 2
Tamarind soaked water
Green chilli(sliced into 2 pieces) -3
Red Chilli – 2
Ginger(Cut into small pieces) – 1 Tb spoon
Methi seeds – 12
Hing – 2 pinches
Curry leaves, mint leaves
Dhaniya Powder – 1 Tb spoon
Black Pepper powder – 1/2 Tea spoon
Salt as per taste
Preparation:
Boil masoor dal and keep aside.
In the kadhai, pour 2 tea spoons oil. Add Mustard seeds, Cumin, Ginger, Methi seeds, Red Chillies, Green Chillies, Hing. Then add tomatoes.
When the tomatoes are half cooked add tamarind water and bring it to a boil. Now add Masoor dal, curry leaves, mint leaves, dhaniya powder, pepper powder and salt. Let it boil on high for few minutes. Garnish with Coriander and the rasam is ready to serve 

My breakfast : 3 Dosa + 1 Love

Image

Dosas are very common breakfast in our house. Accompanied with yummy chutneys and  hot piping Sambar, we savor every bit of the dosa. Why the strange title? Arent’ dosas a common breakfast in south indian household? Yes, I know you are asking me this. But, my breakfast special is the “+1 Love” in my breakfast.

No matter how many dosas i eat, the “+1 Love” never changes in my breakfast. There is a story behind this. When I got newly married 6 years back, we had dosa as breakfast in our home. I was the first one to eat, and My mother in law was serving me Dosa. 1,2,3,4 … i kept eating and she kept giving. I told her i was full at the end of 4th Dosa. She insisted me to take “1 More!” . Being new daughter in law, I couldn’t really go against her suggestion. Finally, I ended up taking 3 more and only after i told her that i just couldn’t eat more than this any single time of my eating session. Later, my husband and sister in law ate their dosas and their “Enough Maa!” started right after 3 Dosas and they too managed to stop only after 6-7 dosas each.

Back home, at my mom’s place – we all subconsciously think that we are adults enough to take decisions. No one hardly asks the other to eat beyond what they’ve put on their plate. To be frank, we are so engrossed in other topics of discussion that we hardly notice how many dosas each person has eaten. After marriage, it was a big shift for me – simply because the focus has shifted to me, my plate, the number of dosas i was eating, and the amount of chutney i was consuming. And whether I was multitasking during eating. Initially, it was very pressurizing for me. The whole experience.

Slowly, I got used to it. I knew my mother in law would always ask “1 more”  after I say “enough”. So, I started playing around and started saying “enough” only after 2 dosas. It didn’t work well though – she thoroughly ignored and i still ate the same amounts.

Now, after 6 years of marriage – you know what i do? I savor the “1 Love” dosa she makes for us. It’s her maternal instinct to make sure her kids are really well fed and she will always ask us to eat one more, just in case. I’ve upped my dosa quantity to match her expectation. And boy, that was so easy! I just had to eat 2 more dosas and i can see the happy glow on her face for filling my stomach.

So, now you know my secret? Welcome home, we would be glad to serve you our lovely dosas + “1 Love” 🙂

Have a good day and keep rocking!!

Saanvi Chronicles : First headbath without a tear

headbath for kids
Happy head bath.
Source: pinterest

How I wish my kid’s bathtime was so pleasant! Don’t get me wrong. Saanvi really likes water. To the extent that she insisted of going to the swimming pool every single day while we were in Sydney. And boy, she learnt to float using the inflated support type (not sure what the swimming name is). But, she hated the feeling of water flowing all through her body, right from her top. And to top that, she gave me a really hard time to wipe her head, which caused her to be cold patient very very frequently. Although she has really nice and soft hair, these things made me cut her hair already 3 times now. Whenever I cut her hair, I would sigh deeply inside and say to myself on when she will grow up to maintain her hair.

Well, the time has come – today! With kids, everyday is a surprise. Whatever they eat today will be detested tomorrow. And whatever they feared today, tomorrow it will be part of their routine effortlessly.  But, as a parent – it is our responsibility to make the transition effortlessly as possible.

Here is the sequence of events from “crying to the roof top” to “sitting happily through head bath” for Saanvi:

1. She doesn’t like head bath. I cannot get her to the bathroom to do head bath. There are a couple of instances where we did not bathe her for 2 days, because SHE JUST DOESN’T WANT TO COME IN.

2. A norm was that, she would keep crying all the while during headbath and I would go on with whatever i was doing. I tried to soothe her by telling all kinds of rhymes and stories, but if i remember correctly, she would cry even loudly when I started talking.

3. Saanvi loves me doing things. Usually, I try not to let her watch me bathing. But, whenever she gets to catch me doing headbath – that’s the perfect time to let her “copy” me. I would tell her that mummy doesnt cry because it doesn’t hurt when you pour water from your head to your toe. Even if water trickles down, it is okay.

4. Slowly, I started noticing her pattern with other things and applied the same here. Usually, she hates surprises and is good if informed on what is happening with her. One day, I told her that she is gonna have her head washed now.  She cried lesser than earlier times, which was a good sign for me.

5. Next step was to appreciate what she did. I told every single one in the family that Saanvi cries very less because she is told in advance. And she is a very good girl. I could see her beaming with pride.

6. Today, the D-day. When I told her she would be bathing her head, to my surprise – she closed her eyes, sat still and told me : “SAANVI WOULDN’T CRY BECAUSE MUMMY TOLD ME BEFOREHAND!!”. It was my turn to get shocked now. Pleasant ofcourse!! 🙂 The entire saga finished so effortlessly.

Today is one of the first for Saanvi. Over time, I have come to realize that I need to shut up to let me & everyone else know how Saanvi is progressing through her toddler phases.

I hope these tips help atleast one mom who is plucking her hair in frustration regarding this issue.

Have a good day and keep rocking!!

Happy Father’s Day : Things my Dad taught me without talking about them

Dad and Mom

This pic was taken at Jurong Bird Park, Singapore. One of my most favorite pics. Although today is Father’s day, I can never post a single pic of him. He’s incomplete without my mother beside him 🙂 On this special day, my mind has been busy compiling the list of things I learnt from my Father. We are talkative people but things wander mostly around materialistic things. It is always correct that kids copy “everything” their parents do. Thankfully, I’m no exception. My Dad taught me a lot of things without talking about them. Just by doing the right things, however difficuilt they may be.

In no order of importance, below are the things I learnt from my Dad:

1. No matter what, always love your family. Never Judge them. There are umpteen instances where he felt cornered and mistreated by his own loved ones, but I never once saw him decide whether they deserve him. Instead, he just went with the flow.

2. GIVE things for the joy of giving. And never expect any return. Whatever the thing may be – buying things for your loved one, spending time to listen and advise you. You are fortunate enough in this life to be able to give something to someone.

3. Treat your life partner like a QUEEN. (KING for gals). They may not be perfect as a person, but they are perfect for you. Be willing to look beyond the superficial differences and unite with the soul of the person.

4. Have the courage to let your kids live their life. I really cannot write this point without tears in my eyes.  When I wanted to marry the guy of my choice, he tested my decision with his wisdom. He stood beside me like a rock and made my transition to the choice of my life easy.

5. You are never old to learn new things. At 52, he bought his first gadget.  And ever since then, he uses technology to keep himself busy and updated. A Lot of time, he will be the one suggesting Apps on the iphone to me, not the other way round!

6. Be Satisfied with your life.  There are mistakes, there are glories – and there are always regrets on things we shouldn’t but we did and things we should but we didn’t. Take everything in your stride. End of the day, satisfied life is the best life.

Thank You Dad, for being wonderful inspiration in my Life. Afterall, I’m a “Daddy’s Girl” since young for a good reason you see:) My deepest desire is to be able to pass on these happy-life-secrets to my kids, as effortlessly as he did to us.

Being Aware of the problem is half the solution.

At 12:40 PM at night, what makes me write this post? That too, after not blogging for about 8-9 days in sequence?  Sure, I had things to blog. After a particularly awesome period in my time, now it’s time to spoil my well built routine. Past few days have been sitting late nights, getting late mornings and eating wrong things at wrong time all the time. Even my meditation habit has slipped past me. In usual circumstances ,I would have beaten up myself to death for leaving my routine halfway and jumping into the bad habits again! But, when I meditated the last time, a thought occured to me. Which keeps occuring at regular intervals to me:

THIS TOO SHALL PASS

I did really stick it on top of my dressing table and would look up to it innumerable amount of times in a day. That would keep me going with my day, however crappy. But, one fine day ( today and precisely, half an hour before now) – I decided that enough is enough. What’s that “thing” that managed to wreak havoc with all my schedule?  Having an silent room, I meditated for 15 minutes and opened my eyes in awe.

I knew the problem. How blessed I was !! I did quick checks with myself and supporting evidences to confirm the problem. Bingo! Lot of times, it is very hard to understand what goes on in our minds – it is a vast jungle. But, it is not stupid. It knows all the answers, only we need to know how to extract them from it. Once I perfectly knew the problem, the answer was visible in front of my eyes. Needless to say, I’d be back to my old days of good routine very very soon.

Here is what I learnt from this experience:

1. You are not stupid.  Whenever there is a routine slip up for a long time, it  triggers a red flag. Your mind is obsessed with something else and cannot concentrate on your routine. Find out what it is . Preferably, sit in meditation and let it speak out to you.

2. This too shall pass. Be kind to yourself at all times. No matter what, never treat yourself the way you’d never treat others in the same situation.

3.  Once you know the problem and the solution, be really really strict about implementing it. Good things happen only then.

Being Aware of the problem is half the solution. And the tougher half. I’m glad I dealt with my problem this way – a first for me.

Have a good day and keep rocking!!

Breakfast : Sabudana Vada /Sago Vada

This is one long pending vada recipe. Everytime I bring sago, I am so tempted to make yummy khichdi that i never got around to make this. This time, when i saw the 1/4 kg of sago brought from store, I immediately made my mind to make it for dinner. The vada turned out awesome and everyone at my home really liked it. Here we go:

sabudana_vadaIngredients:

Sago : 1/4 kg

Potatoes : 5 medium sized

Green chillis : 10-12 coarsely grinded ( Adjust according to taste)

Ginger : 1 medium piece, cut into small pieces

Curry leaves : A big sprig

Salt : To taste

Rice flour : Depending on the amount required

Procedure:

1. Soak sago in water for atleast 4 hours. Make sure the water is just enough to soak sago and no extra water remains in it when the soaking is complete.

2. Boil potatos, mash and keep aside.

3. Mix the sago, mashed potatoes,  coarsely grinded greenchillis, ginger and curry leaves and salt.

5.  Heat the oil and deep fry vada.

Serve hot with chilli sauce.

Notes:

1. If water remains after sago is soaked for enough time, do squeeze out sago and make sure no water remains.

2. When I tried the first batch of sago vada, it split in oil. What I did was to add some rice flour and then the vada did not break. This is a general tip.

3.  Start the vada frying process as soon as you add salt in the mixture. Delaying it will cause the vada to break.

Have a nice day and keep rocking!!