Monday, October 28, 2013

The List: October 2013

In my corner of the world, October saw a fall in temperatures and a rise in festivities. Halloween is in the air with pumpkins, pumpkins everywhere and creepy decorations on lawns up and down the street. V and I were laughing at ourselves because the neighbors have strung up fake cobwebs but we've been shirking yard work for so long that we have real cobwebs stretched across the front of our house- really!

Eating

Jasmine rice! All these years, I've resisted buying this fragrant Thai rice because with 4 or 5 types of rice already sitting in the pantry, I did not want to add one more. Well, this month I finally bought some and can I just say that I'm smitten with jasmine rice now. It cooks up soft and flavorful- wonderful in East Asian dishes, of course, but equally tasty in pulao. Do you cook with jasmine rice regularly?

Enchiladas! I love enchilada platters in Mexican restaurants- the typical ones with fiery looking red sauce and a heap of lettuce and tomato on the side. Well, this week I made red enchilada sauce from scratch using some assorted dried Mexican chiles that I've had in the pantry for ages...and while the sauce was tasty, it was also 5 times hotter than I wanted it to be. Oops. Well, V won't eat spicy food so I'm working my way solo through this huge tray on enchiladas, and quite enjoying it too. This sauce, once I've tweaked it, will be completely blog-worthy so please stay tuned for a authentic(ish) red enchilada sauce coming soon to your friendly neighborhood Indian food blog.

Baking

Impossible Coconut Pie, pinned from here. Impossible pies get the name because a little flour is mixed right into the batter, but separates into a thin crust while baking (same principle as for the mini quiches I posted last week). Well, this particular recipe couldn't be easier, in fact I just gave the ingredients a whirl in the blender making it even easier. But the results, while tasty, were not mind-blowing. I made this as a birthday treat for my quilting teacher who loves coconut. Next time, I'll try another recipe for coconut cake or something. By the way, the picture shows the souffle-like pie billowing as it came out of the oven, when cooled, it deflated a good deal.

Oh, and I continued the apple baking fest by making apple cake and apple muffins. The cake was good but a little too dense and eggy for my taste. The apple muffins were wonderful- I cut the sugar way down. And the recipe said it would make 12 muffins  but actually made 16.

Reading 

Image: Goodreads
Life After Life by Kate Atkinson. The book tells the story of Ursula Todd, born in England on a snowy February night in 1910. Well, in the first chapter, tiny Ursula is stillborn, perishing with the umbilical cord wrapping around her neck. The very next chapter tells a different version of the story, one in which the doctor made it through the snowstorm and clipped the cord just in time, saving her life and letting her grow up. And so on and so on, the book asks the question: how would life change if a different choice had been made, if circumstances were different and life took a different turn? This novel is written in a very unusual style, bouncing back and forth in time and storyline, but it grew on me quickly and I will be thinking about it for a long time. I highly recommend this intelligent and well-crafted book. Not necessarily a light read (after all, anyone born in 1910 faced two world wars before they reached middle age, if they even reached middle age) but well worth your time and mental space.

Making

An apple hat and matching scarf- a birthday gift for Lila's little friend who turned two.






Fall yarn wreath, pinned from here. It was fun to make and easy as can be (I

used push pins to fix the flowers- no glue needed) but I should have used a larger wreath form- it is way too small for the door. Oh well. I'm still sending it and the coconut pie as pins #4 and #5 to Trish's Pin It and Do It challenge.

Laughing at conversations with my two year old.

Lila (making stirring motions): Lila's cooking.
Me: Oh, what are you making?
Lila: Making bananas.

Me: Hey, baby Lila!
Lila (in same tone of voice): Hey, baby Mama!

Planning a small Diwali party. Now where did I put those diyas and tea-lights...

Supporting my friend Bala's art. I knew Bala briefly in St. Louis and we've been friends since. She's an incredibly generous soul, has rescued dogs and birds, and she's trying a recipe from every country on her blog. I still remember the veggie sushi she made for us almost three years ago.

Bala sent me my little one this sign as a gift
when she was born-
it hangs proudly in her room.
Those familiar Indian art forms of rangoli, kolam and mehendi- Bala interprets them on canvas. I am mesmerized by her mandalas and kolams. For years, she has donated paintings to raise money for various worthy causes and is now raising money to go pro. I am cheering her on and spreading the word! Please read her story and support her if you can.



Nicest thing that happened this month: A very sweet reader named Rashmi read in my book survey that I don't have an e-reader and promptly sent me one that she isn't using any more. It is very fun to try an e-reader for the first time, but more than that, I was so touched by this generous and spontaneous gesture.

October was a lucky month because I also won a quilting book and an online quilting class in blog giveaways. Inspired by all this generosity, I looked around for a couple of things to share in turn. Nothing as big as an e-reader but if you'd like to put your name in the hat for these little gifts, please fill out the forms (there are just two questions in the form- so I know your e-mail contact). I'm afraid I can only ship within the US, but please feel free to enter on behalf of family/friends in the US if you live elsewhere. I'll randomly draw winners on Sunday, November 3.

Giveaways!

1. A Marathi book written by a group of pediatricians (my mother co-wrote and edited this book) called Balahaar Margadarshika (guide book for children's nutrition). It has dozens of kid-friendly recipes, informative articles and cute cartoons. You will need to be able to read Marathi in order to use this cookbook! Put your name in the hat by filling this form.The giveaway is closed- won by Uma.







2. One of my favorite books, the Number 1 Ladies' Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith. I bought this copy in my library's annual book sale and it is in great condition. Put your name in the hat by filling this form.The giveaway is closed- won by Prathima.









3. A scarf: I knitted this soft and squishy blue drop-stitch scarf for no one in particular, and saved it in my "gift box". Maybe you'll enjoy it this winter? It is fairly short, but would look nice cinched with a brooch or tucked under a jacket collar. Put your name in the hat by filling this form. The giveaway is closed- won by Jui.








How did the month of October treat you? What are you eating, reading, making, planning, and laughing at? What was the nicest thing that happened to you all month? Share in the comments, please and thank you. Happy Halloween and Happy Diwali to everyone who's celebrating!

50 comments:

  1. Happy Halloween and Happy Diwali! :-) We are warming up to using an e-reader too, hubby got a kindle and loves it a lot, it's nice and convenient but I love holding a book and flipping through pages of paper. Loved reading your list, it was fun and heart warming at the same time.

    Here's what's happening here:
    Eating: Warm and hearty soups and stews for meals and tasting diwali snacks and sweets in between while making them.
    Baking: Olya naralachya karanjya :-) :-) :-) come visit me! please!
    Reading: 'Heavenly dates' SS collection by Alexander McCall Smith
    Making: Diwali faral! Made some this weekend and making some everyday this week. Happy busy times in the kitchen.
    Laughing: I took some vanilla cupcakes to a friend's get-together topped with fresh whipped cream frosting, rainbow sprinkles and m n m's for the kids. The kids promptly licked off the frosting and decoration leaving the cakes for their mom's to finish :-) and one little girl suggested me to bring lots and lots of frosting and decorations next time..'like a huge bowl full of it for each of us' she added, and just a tiny piece of cake at the bottom 'if you have to'. :-))
    Planning: To start blogging soon :-)
    Supporting: 'Locks of Love' by donating my hair to make hairpieces for those who have lost theirs during cancer treatments or other illnesses.
    Nicest Thing that happened this month: My in-laws finally got their visa after 2 unsuccessful trials and shall be visiting us for the first time soon. Can't wait to hug them, pamper them and show them around! It's been such a long long wait.

    - Priti

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    1. Oh the excitement of making Diwali faral for days on end- some of my best memories of this festival! My own faral making will only involve one or two items. But eat an extra karanji for me, won't you?

      You're becoming the queen of cakes and cupcakes, I must say! And I am so touched by your locks of love donation.

      So happy for your in-laws and I hope they have a fantastic visit.

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  2. Love your list!
    We do eat Jasmine rice on a regular basis. In fact that's what we used completely. Now a days jasmine rice has been replaced by long grain rice from Costco which also works well for South Indian dishes.
    The apple hat set looks SO CUTE!
    Lila is getting to be quite the talker hanh?
    They grow cuter by the day until you cannot outsmart them. My four year old says things that makes my jaw drop - like "Could you put some Katy Perry on the radio?" or "I make a choice not to go to school today because I am not well!"
    Eating: Apple cake - yes I made the French apple cake and it is delish!
    Reading: The Shogun's daugher by Laura Joh Rowland Just started it, pretty interesting.
    Planning" Just finished the whole "Golu/Navaratri" entertaining. So nothing till Thanksgiving.
    Laughing at: Always my son. He does the funniest things!
    Nicest thing: This one made me think for a few mins. Well my husband planned a pre Diwali dinner for us. So that's kind of the nicest thing that happened today.
    Have a good day!

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    1. Hi Sangeetha- I still love sona masoori for South Indian and Maharashtrian dishes but am happy to find another rice I love. Yes, Lila is a big talker and says hilarious things quite inadvertently. Sounds like your little guy is the same!

      A pre Diwali dinner sounds like a lot of fun and very thoughtful on your husband's part. Glad you enjoyed the apple cake!

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  3. Eating: (or trying not to) chocolate cake and shrikhand - made to celebrate a birthday and dasara.
    Baking: Walnut Tart adn a Shrikhand cheesecake for a Halloween bake-off.
    Reading: Abundance - a fiction debut novel - forgot the author. Shades of Jhumpa Lahiri but not her complex style
    Making: Diwali kandeel - holding a workshop next week at work for a party
    Laughing: when watching Psych Season 7
    Planning: a trip during the Thanksgiving week when we have family visiting
    Supporting: my husband's trip to India ;-)
    Nicest Thing that happened this month: My company newsletter published the story of me completing the Seattle to Portland ride

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    1. Shrikhand cheesecake sounds brilliant, Vishakha! And KUDOS on the ride- three cheers for you. You have a lot going on and it all sounds like fun.

      I enjoy watching Psych too- one of my favorite knitting-time shows.

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  4. Your posts always cheer me up. I'm in love with that hat and wreath. So pretty! And baby Lila is one hilarious kid!

    I'm eating - gosh, so many different things! We just bought a Vitamix, so the latest craze has been making fresh fruit juices. I've also been making many healthy dishes to balance all the ghee/oil I will be consuming during the holiday season :D
    Making: A crochet hat and an oil painting. This probably doesn't count in 'making' but I'm choreographing a dance for an upcoming Diwali function.
    Planning: For a change, I'm attending holiday parties at my friends' instead of hosting one myself. I am, however, planning to make some goodies to share. Shankarpalya and Chakali are on the list.
    Laughing at: A new series we started watching on Netflix - The League.
    Nicest thing: Received a gift box from my cousin along with a book I wanted to borrow from her.

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    1. Thanks Snehal!! Congrats on the Vitamix and I hope you enjoy it- I dream of owning one some day. Not that I particularly like juices or smoothies but it makes such wonderfully smooth and silky chutneys and masala pastes. You are having a terrific month with the painting and the dance. Hope you enjoy all the holiday parties!

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  5. Nupur, as I saw your new post on feedly, I was just thinking about how a lot of readers, like me, are cheered by just seeing a new post from you. That is so wonderful!

    The most adventurous thing I did recently was indulge in an Ayurvedic (Kerala-style) massage. This was a gift from a dear friend, and I am glad I tried it. This was also the nicest thing that happened to me this month.

    My 4-year old also has an endless supply of wisdom. Like when he did something naughty, and I got upset, and we both said 'sorry' to each other, and he went 'but you don't look sorry'.

    I've been meaning to ask you Nupur, do you know how I can get hold of an English copy of Ruchira? I am big 'regional food' enthusiast, and would love to purchase a copy of the book, but it seems to be out of stock everywhere! I wouldn't mind purchasing a used copy - but it would have to be in English. Would you know where I can find one?

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    1. Radhika- that's a very nice thing to say- thank you! How wonderful that you got to treat yourself to a massage! I am cracking up at what your 4 year old said- LOL.

      As for the English version of Ruchira, I have no idea where you could find it- never had to look for it because I have the two-volume Marathi version. Maybe ask family/friends in India to look in their local bookstores for the English version?

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  6. Shubha from SydneyOctober 29, 2013 1:29 AM

    Hey Nupur - another wonderful post from super woman/mother/blogger/quilter/baker/reader and so on.....
    Coincidentally the book that I read - Dr Atul Gawande's Checklist Manifesto also described an ordeal that a 3 year old Austrian girl went through, was clinically gone for 2 hours and thanks to a great team of doctors is now a normal healthy 5 year old. Go Lila! Make Bananas and Apples. Made pedhas as younger son has now graduated as a doctor. Organising a Diwali function for 70 people ( from ours and neighbouring suburbs).
    Thanks for your lovely posts.
    Warm wishes - Shubha

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    1. Shubha- Hi :) Many congrats to your son- how exciting for him! Hope your big Diwali party is lots of fun- 70 people- that must take a lot of organization.

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  7. So look forward to your Monday posts!! And these lists are my favorite :-)
    Eating: lots of methi thepla that someone made for me and date cake (from aayis recipes). Your tray of enchiladas looks delicious. I've been looking for an enchilada sauce from scratch recipe (I love red and green sauce)- can't wait for yours.
    Baking: I just made the giant cast iron cookie from your blog (a Lodge cast-iron pan recipe) for a birthday dessert for my hubs. It was such a hit that my dad has requested it for his birthday later this week. Easiest thing ever!!
    Reading: Bill Bryson's Neither Here nor There. I loved his book - A Walk in the Woods that I read some years ago. This one is good too, written in his typical style. But I'm just taking forever to get through it, probably coz there's just too much else going on in my life right now.
    Making: a little play teepee for my kids. Its also taking forever (theme of life it seems LOL ;-)) - bought the supplies months ago and finally getting round to it.
    Laughing: things my toddlers say and do (I have a 3 yo and a 1.5 yo) - never a dull moment around here.
    Planning: or trying to: Diwali celebrations for my little family. I'm a first generationer and we almost never celebrated Diwali growing up here - my mum just never got into it. I always struggle with how/which Indian festivals to celebrate with my kids - it always feels like a huge solo effort on my part (hubs is indifferent) and often competing with popular/commercial American holidays. Still figuring it out.
    Supporting: a children's library for a small school in East Africa my sister worked at this year.
    Nicest thing: I've been fighting a cough and cold lately, so when I came home today after a loooong day - it was wonderful to see that my sweet husband had dinner all ready (granted it was mostly pre-made - soup from a carton and some fresh bread, but its the thought that counts and I didn't have to cook ;-)

    Happy Diwali!!
    Prashanti

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    1. Thanks Prashanti and Happy Diwali to you! Ooh I love that date cake too. And so glad the giant cookie was a hit with your family :)

      The play teepee is such a great idea! I empathize with you about celebrating Indian festivals- my husband and I both are not religious and not part of any Indian associations. I celebrate Diwali in a small way and that's about it. My kid will have to get her culture somewhere else ;)

      Hope your cold/cough goes away soon- having dinner made is a small but very sweet gesture!

      Kudos to your sister- a library is the biggest gift one could give a child.

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    2. Prashanti, make your own traditions and the kids will cherish them as they grow up. The more close-knit and homely the celebration is the more special it gets. Sometimes it is good to not have the huge inheritence of memories surrounding these festivals, as much solace these memories offer for having experienced such wonderful times, there is also a sense of guilt for not being able to re-create it for the next generation :-). I read a beautiful article recently on how the author struggled with Karva Chauth and eventually created her own special way to celebrate it. Here's the link
      http://www.monicabhide.com/2013/10/fasting-or-not-for-love.html

      I hope you enjoy it and discover your own special way to celebrate diwali by following your heart :-) after all, all celebrations stem from there. Happy diwali to you and your family.

      - Priti

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    3. Priti,
      I just came back to read everyone's lists, and saw your comment which struck such a chord with me. Thank you so much!! It is exactly what I needed. And thank you for the link to the article - it was beautiful and such a good reminder to listen to yourself and what feels right to you. Hope you had a wonderful Diwali with your family!
      Prashanti

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  8. Ha..ha...reading your conversation with Lila :) You always come up with refreshing posts. Mix of this and that :)

    Yes, we love Jasmine rice and been using it since many years, should I say more than 7 years and never looked back. Actually, I use it for pretty everything. For my daily plain rice, kheer, pulao, pilaf or you name it. I use it everywhere. And, I almost stopped to use Basmati rice or use it very rarely. Try jasmine rice for rice pudding (kheer), you'll love it with all taste and fragrance. I have posted my kheer recipes on my blog ages ago.

    Love to Lila. xx



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    1. Hi Sonia! I'll definitely have to try making kheer with Jasmine rice. I imagine it would be so fragrant and wonderful.

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  9. Nupur- Not sure if you have spent Christmas in the south. Southerners, especially Atlantians love holidays and Christmas is favorite by far!. I remember when I moved to Atlanta 20 years ago. there was electricity in the air, traffic jams everywhere, malls were crowded to capacity, but what took me aback, and made the point, was radio stations reporting on mall parking lots. X-Mall parking is filled to n-capacity, Y-Mall has no parking space...etc! I can still remember the shock and amusement of listening to that report. I have since moved from Atlanta, to another southern town but will always have fond memories of pre-Olympics Atlanta. It got crazy after.

    Love Athens. Its beautiful. Reminded me of a typical college town I read about it a book decades ago. I hope it still is!

    And I have to ask.... How did Lila's Banana turn out? Such cuteness!

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    1. Athens is still a wonderful college town and we love it here! We were here for Christmas last year and it was so festive and charming. I had to LOL at the mall parking lot updates on radio- now they report from mall parking lots on the local news on Black Friday!!

      Lila's bananas were yummy- then later she made me banana thoup (soup) and I don't know about that one ;)

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    2. Children are so precious! Love Lila's imagination. Enjoy! Time flies and before you know it they are teenagers!!!

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  10. Getting back to blogosphere after a long time. A lot has been going on this month for me. We came back from India after a 2 month vacation.
    Eating : We are eating soup and salad for lunch and dinner atleast 4 days a week. We are in our 2nd week and not yet bored of it. It is the season of soups after all and we love lettuce based salads and anything with honey mustard.
    Baking : I made chocolate cupcakes with pink cream cheese frosting for my daughters birthday celebration at her preschool. The unusual kid that she is, she eats just the cupcake and leaves the frosting even though it is her fav. color :)
    Reading : I did read 3 of the books from the Game of Thrones series till about a month ago but dont have time anymore. I am trying to avoid interesting novel type books because they are hard for me to put down and do other things like cooking dinner :)
    Doing : Tidying up the house, one shelf at a time. Its been 2 weeks and still lots to do.
    Laughing : I loved reading abt ur conversation with Lila. Kids are funny specially when they are just learning to speak and understand language. My 3 yr old makes me laugh everyday but I have to remind myself to really listen to her without thinking about the to-do list with half my brain.
    Making : Ginger-Honey mix as a homemade remedy for cough. All of us have been sick since the weekend.
    Thanks for having a giveaway. I am filling the form for ur mom's marathi book. I am always worried my daughter is not eating nutritious food.

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    1. LOL I'm with your kid- I love the cupcakes and scrape away the frosting. I've been tidying up the house too, although it is a never ending process.

      You are SO right about paying attention to your child and not being distracted by chores. I find myself saying "umm really" to her all the time in a distracted way- not good! Hope you all feel better soon!

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    2. Thanks! We are getting better. And thanks for reading such a long comment and replying to everyone so patiently. I love that about you and your blog.

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  11. as always, awesome knitting nupur! loved the apple hat..so cute! here is my list..
    eating- mom is here! so lots of traditional maharashtrian dishes. Had pumpkin veggie with goda masala yesterday and I was in food heaven! I baked dates cake past week for my mom and she loved it.
    reading- we had our baby in september, so my reading has been negligible past month. The only things I am reading is googled up stuff about baby rashes, how to get his sleep cycle right and poop colors! (TMI?)
    making- again, made nothing creative. Only creative thing I did was take newborn pics of my baby. I am heavily into photography and taking baby pics was one of the things I was most enthusiastic about when we had a baby! hehe
    planning- to get back to work in another 2 weeks and a christmas vacation road trip! The first time we are planning a vacation this much in advance!
    laughing- over our wee baby's antics. He is such a joker!

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    1. Thanks Neha! LOL at googling weird baby stuff- I remember that so well. How fun that you're taking lots of pics of your little one.

      Listen, I have a little gift for your baby. Will you e-mail me your snail mail address at onehotstove AT gmail DOT com?

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  12. Your wreath looks great! Thanks for the link. I used pins for my flowers, but it just occurred to me to use them for the starting and ending yarn pieces too. So smart!

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    1. Thanks so much for sharing your lovely craft ideas!

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  13. Hi nupur! Lila says the cutest things. We love jasmine rice too but usually eat it with Thai curries only. Will try it with Indian food.
    My list.
    Reading: stuck in the middle of rowlings detective novel. Have to say her post Harry potter narrative voice is not being loved by me.
    So glad you enjoyed life after life. The book has so many appreciable facets doesn't it?
    Eating: oven roasted baked potatoes and Brussel sprouts.
    Drinking: jasmine green tea- love it!
    Making: lots of pretty fall pictures with my brother's hand me down SLR.
    Best thing: parents visiting at the moment. Each weekday evening is now like a mini- weekend. Lots of chatter and good food.
    Laughing- at my daughter's new name for herself- Nene. Don't ask me where that came from!
    Have a great month ahead.
    Arpita

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    1. Arpita- I only picked up Life after Life because I read your recommendation on goodreads so thanks for steering me to a good book! I did not enjoy the Rowling novel :( I really wanted to. I've been making lots of roasted veggies too. Green tea though, tastes like hot water to me :)

      Hope you have lots of fun with your parents! Hugs to your little Nene.

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    2. I suppose this makes up for frenchman's creek doesn't it? ;)
      Rowling's new books have too much crass language in them which is just not my cup of tea. Goody goody mcCall smith and Barbara pym for me.
      I always used to think green tea tasted like grass! This tea smells so good I just want to smell it and not drink it. The tea also has a pleasant flavour when lukewarm.hugs to Lila as well.

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    3. A colleague once gave me some jasmine green tea to try and I am not fond of green tea in general but the aroma of this flowery blend was so so heart warming. It made me recall indian weddings and festivals. I could hear the shehnai in my mind and the grassy notes reminded me of mehandi. It is not something I will reach out for everyday but next time I miss attending another family wedding in India I will drown my sorrows in a cup of jasmine green tea. :-)

      - Priti

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    4. Priti- jasmine and tube rose are two of my favorite flowers. Who would have thought to make tea out of them. Tube roses for me remind me of Indian weddings.

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  14. Hi Nupur, it's always fun to read your list and get a little peek into your life. Lila sounds so cute. You are not alone with the real cobwebs in your yard -- I was beginning to feel embarrassed about ours and then decided, hey, why complain when nature's giving a helping hand? :)

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    1. Thanks for stopping by, Vaishali. LOL yes, we're definitely going au naturel with our yard! One of these I will be buried under the leaves though.

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  15. As always, Nupur, it is so much fun, peeking into your world! This list should be a series on OHS, inviting all your readers!

    I like Jasmine rice and also mix it with another, not so fragrant Indian rice, makes a good combo.

    Eating- home cooked meals and wondering what, I can make to get the child eat 'really well'.

    Reading- Just started 'The pregnant king' by Dr. Devadutta Patanaik

    Making - Faral, got off to a real late start. :(

    Planning - calling friends for a diwali dinner and have not done any planning, no faral, no decorations and am wondering, like you, where I kept the string of lights and diyas ( or just to dash out and get some more, sigh)

    And laughing at - the things my 5 year old does.
    The fact that this morning, he had to wear a costume to school and we had to put him in last years costume ( Ninja, just because it has a separate pant and a pull on shirt thingy, as opposed to his pull on from bottom to top transformer costume- it is easier for a 5 yr old to go to the restroom with a pull on / off pant ;) )

    What was the nicest thing that happened to you all month? - My Dad recovering from his stroke. That is the best thing that has happened, ever.

    Wishing you, V and dear Lila a very happy Diwali!

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    1. Best wishes to your father for a speedy and complete recovery!!

      I recycled Lila's pizza costume from last year too- it is easy to put on and off and she still does not understand the whole costume concept so why bother? She was happy enough to wear it and the teachers were delighted.

      Pregnant King, eh? Intriguing, intriguing.

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  16. Nupur, I am trying to knit a hat for my new born niece ... can you give me the pattern details that you used for the apple hat. Thanks, Sowmya

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    1. Sowmya- I used this pattern: http://www.knitfoundry.com/patterns/SweetSimpleBabyHats.pdf

      Used cranberry colored Vanna's Choice worsted yarn and size 6 needles, used brown yarn for the top short i-cord bit (for stem) and attached two improvised garter stitch leaves.

      Here's another "proper" apple hat pattern:
      http://web.archive.org/web/20080404200230/http://www.knitlist.com/96gift/giftapplehat.htm

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  17. Hi Nupur you write so well, simple, and neat, that it keeps me hooked to read your blog and to try out different things, and enjoy the moments.
    This months for me is full of packing, moving, and unpacking:) Happy Diwali!
    Mamta

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    1. That's a very nice thing to say, Mamta- thank you! Good luck with moving and setting up your new place and a very Happy Diwali to you.

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  18. Nice Read, and I love your Pins and the way you use in the challenges.. Lila is so cute , as they say once babies talk there’s loads of entertainment..
    Let me get in with my month..
    Eating: Leftover b'day cake, celebrated over weekend .. and still eating it !
    Baking: Planning to bake Batti of the dal batti over the Diwali, this is what is prepared at The Foodies hometown for Diwali
    Reading: Just completed Perfect Match by Jodi Picoult, now started with Where are the children by Mary higgins clark
    Making: Faral : Anarse to be specific over the weekend,everything else will most probably be store brought
    Laughing: Just at everything that my boy does, the way he shouts to the way he tries to clap n misses the palms ! everything
    Planning: Couple of get together with friends and families for Diwali

    Have a lovely Diwali !
    Enjoy the weekend :)

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    1. Hi Kanchan- I haven't eaten anarse in years and years although they are one of my favorite Diwali treats. The crunchy poppy seeds are so yummy. Your little boy sounds so cute. Hope you have a wonderful festive season!

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  19. Eating: Diwali faral - my brother sent me a Faral hamper with 12 different items
    Reading: Nothing... It had been a crazy month with moving to a new town
    Making: Halloween costume for my DD's first Halloween. Knitted a pumpkin hat (http://randomstitches.wordpress.com/2008/01/11/hello-world/) and sewed a Pumpkin costume (similar to this one - http://craftygemini.blogspot.com/2012/10/happy-halloween.html)
    Planning: To downsize - moving made me realize how much stuff I have that I don't need any more
    Laughing at: Everything my almost 8 month old does each day

    Wish you a very happy Diwali!

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    1. Amruta- how wonderful to get a Diwali hamper full of goodies! I can just imagine that your little one must have looked incredibly adorable in the pumpkin hat and costume.

      I'm with you on the downsizing- stuff really weighs me down.

      Happy Diwali to you all!

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  20. Happy Diwali Nupur! Wishing you and your family a wonderful one.

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    1. Happy Diwali to you and your husband too- hope you are celebrating in style!

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  21. Hi Nupur,
    I had the same revelation with Jasmine rice! It is mindblowingly delicious with thai curries. For me, basmati rice simply doesn't do justice in this particular case. I will have to try it with Indian curries and of course, I have to try Kheer with it (idea from one of the comments above)!

    Travel: We've been roaming around a lot, exploring Melbourne. In the last couple of weeks, we've been to Great Ocean Road, Mornington, Yarra Valley, Williamstown and the botanical gardens here.

    Cooking: We recently made a yummy carrot cake with cream cheese frosting to take to DH's office - and I fell in love with carrot cake.. maybe I prefer it to chocolate cakes now.

    Eating out: We've been enjoying fish and chips (twice in the last month).

    Fresh food: We've also been enjoying Hass avocados, and a lot of fruit smoothies to start the day. Also picked up strawberries from a strawberry farm in Mornington, and some sweet cherries from Victoria Market. Its been a grand month food-wise.

    Reading: Haven't had much time to read anything- been busy with study. I am inspired to pick up the Kate Atkinson book you've read.. will look for it when I go to the library next!

    Finally, thank you for writing so well. I've been a loyal reader of your blog from a very long time, right from the beginning.

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    1. J- I just made kheer with Jasmine rice this weekend for Diwali (after reading the comment above) and I agree that it was yummy! You have had a wonderful month indeed. I'm with you on the love of carrot cake. Chocolate hogs the spotlight and that's not fair. Other cakes are wonderful as well :)

      Thank you for your kind words and I'm so grateful to you for reading my blog!

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