Food & Recipes

Shrimp Masala

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Seafood is one of my favourites food, I often include a different version of fish and prawns/shrimps. I try my best to include seafood, once a weekly menu. Shrimps are little tricky to make so it won’t get rubbery or not soft. I am sharing simple Shrimp Masala that’s so easy and doesn’t take much time, I include this recipe as a side dish in a desi dawat. Let’s start!!

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Ingredients:

Shrimp:1/2 kg

Onion:1 slice

Tomatoes:2-3 chopped

Red Chilli powder: To taste

Coriander Powder: 1 Tsp

Turmeric Powder: 1/2 tsp

Chilli flakes: 1 Tsp

Salt: to taste

Curry Leaves:5-6

Kasuri Methi:1-2 tsp

Coriander and Green Chilies: For Garnish

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Method:

In a cooking pot, heat oil and fry curry leaves, add onion fry till light golden brown.

Add tomatoes and other masalas to make a paste.

Now add cleaned shrimps and cook on high flame, until shrimp cook and extra water dries up.

when oil separates masala, put on low flame. Sprinkle methi leaves.

Garnish with Hara Dhania and Green Chillies.

Serve hot with Chapati, Roti or rice.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Food & Recipes

Riwayati Biryani

Pulao and Biryani are my alternate choice for the weekend but I love to make another version of something in between and named “Riwayati Biryani” which is my mom special pilaf recipe(an authentic recipe) and our family favourite.This recipe doesn’t require any extra pot and preparation. The most simple and yummiest rice recipe you can try without any fear….I Promised!!

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INGREDIENTS:

Meat/chicken : 1/2 kg

Rice: 1/2 kg (soaked for 1/2 an hour)

Whole Spice (Sabut Garam Masala):3-4 each

Red Chilli Pepper: According to taste(1/2 Tsp).

Onion: 1 sliced

Tomato: 1 small (chopped)

Ginger/Garlic paste:1 Tsp

Yogurt:1/2 cup

Salt: According to taste

Yogurt Masala:

Green Cardamom (Sabz Ilaichi): 1 Tsp

Cumin (Zeera): 1 Tbs

Nutmeg (Jaifal) & Mace (Javitri):1/2 tsp

whole spice ( Sabut Garam Masala)= 1/2 tsp each

Grind the above ingredients in a coffee grinder, mix it with 1 cup yogurt, set aside.

METHOD:

In a pot heat oil, saute onion till light golden brown.

Add Whole (Sabut )garam masala, and meat and ginger and garlic paste, fry it until meat changes the colour.

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Add chopped tomatoes, salt and red chilli powder.

Add required water and cook on the medium-low flame until meat tender.

Add yogurt masala and mixed it well, you can add green chillies and mint leaves(if you like).20181026_183852 Carefully add soaked rice and mixed with meat & masala. Now add required water(1 inch above the rice). Check salt, it should be little salt-ish side when you taste the water. Cook on high flame until water absorbed.

20181026_184848Now turn the flame to very low flame for 15 minutes and sprinkle yellow food colour (zarda rung).

Mixed and serve hot with Salad, Raita and Chatni.It is similar to the Yakhni Pulao  I posted a few months ago, but a little bit easier and quicker to make.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

life style

Tag!! You’re It!!

“Friends are medicine for wounded heart and vitamin for a hopeful soul” -STEVE TAYLOR

44563119_10156445382475791_6162010182529318912_nIt’s so true but trust me, I am not going to be serious this time. I simply can’t, so here are some type of the friends and I am sure if you have a group of friend you would be either one of them or have one (especially if you are in university).

THAT LEADER: Oh-Boy!! She is a must in every group who decide what to do, and what not to.She/he is the one, who thinks without her/him the group can’t even move(yes to one canteen to other).

THAT FASHIONISTA: In every group, there is a fashion icon.She/he is updated from head to toe and wants every friend to copy her.

THAT DRAMA QUEEN: YES! the one who cries for no reason blames her/himself for being unfortunate or can be sentimental without any reason.

THAT PARHAKO: A mandatory person in every group who pushes everyone to the library every day and the rest of the group completely rely on her/his xerox and assignments without any doubt.

THAT HUNGRY TUMMY: In the middle of the class or combined project this tummy is always rumbling. Do blame her/him if you gained weight.

THAT AWARAGARDH: It is the most outgoing person who converts your combined study night into movie night in 10 minutes, I must say she/He is the RONAQ of the group.

NO-SHOW HEAD: She/he is the one who always makes plans and NO-show at the last moment.he/she is one if the less-trusted person in that group.She/he is the one who is always a late comer and give bribes to get her proxy done.

AN INNOCENT SOUL (ALLAH MIYAN KI GAYEN..LOl): She/he is the sweetest person in the group and does need assistance on every single step. She needs an explanation for everything and She doesn’t even understand crack jokes.

ANGRY BIRD: She/He is somehow similar to the leader but she always grumpy or at least give her/his rolling eyes to another group without any reason.

This list goes on and on… but trust me you are lucky and gonna miss those all friends after you graduated….and tag your besties down below and share your awesome friendship journey. I am dedicating this post to all my friends, Love you all!!

 

 

 

life style

Kailash Travel Diary (Guest Post)

I am back with an exciting guest post written by @nena khan, she is not only my bestie but also a wife and a mother of three beautiful kids. I always wanted to travel Northern Areas in Pakistan and loved hearing stories about their simple and hard-working lifestyle.she recently visited Kailash Chitral, and I asked her to write a blog post to summarize her trip. Hope you will enjoy her trip as much I do.

I am from Pakistan and have got many opportunities in my life to travel through many areas of Pakistan and meet different people from all strata of society. I have seen almost all places of my country and lastly, I visited Bumburet Valley of Chitral.

It was a quite different and beautiful experience of life. There, I came across very amazing facts and history of Kailash Valley which is very rich in culture and traditions. The culture is very different from other parts of Pakistan. Their religion name is Kailash and the place is also named on religion. The three tribes and valleys of Kailash people i.e. valleys of “Rumbur and Bumburet” forming one, and Birir valley the other is known as “Kafiristan”. Kailash people are very simple, honest and peace-loving by nature.

 

43030776_10156395153755791_3620223673190842368_nThey have a very simple lifestyle and don’t have vast ambitions in life as we do. They don’t spend much money on clothes, food and houses. Most of the people are very poor as they have to spend a lot on festivals and local traditions. They are supposed to celebrate the funeral and slaughter fifty goats to feed the entire community and serve them wine after as well. They sing traditional songs of mourning and ladies wear their traditional dress for the funeral ceremony.  In ancient times, people used to place their dead bodies open in a traditionally prepared Coffin at graveyard but since 200 yrs, they started burying dead bodies with coffins and place dead person Charpai (Jute-bed) ups and down over his grave.

As per local customs, the rich person makes the statue of his dead father or relative and in this way, a family expend five to thirty-five lac on after death events and customs. But now the new generation has gone against this tradition and desire to discontinue such traditions as these make them poorer but elders still insist to follow these centuries’ old customs and traditions which differentiate them from other tribes and people.

42917002_10156395153670791_8050548242208784384_n Kalish marriages are also very different, the groom chooses his bride during a traditional dance party. The lady’s father or brother come to the male house and demands money which the boy provides them and marriage is done. Moreover, any male can even take along any already married woman to his house but has to provide a double amount of expenditure done on previous marriage to her first husband.

42914351_10156395153480791_8090197258571612160_nThe people of Kailash live longer than average and their life expectancy is 80 to 90 years. Recently, a man died at the age of 125 years. The reason for long life is their pure and simple food, which also include local dry fruits and goat meat. The people of Kailash think that women are impure and due to same reason women are not allowed to drink water with the same glass of water or even touch. Similarly, during their monthly menstrual days and delivery of a child, they spend these days in a separate isolated house where their family members provide them with food and other daily use things.

 I would like to say thanks to my blessed nest who encouraged and supported me to write a blog as a guest post.

Home Decor / DIY

DIY Body Pillow

Let’s do a little DIY that doesn’t break your bank, and looks so elegant. I made this body pillow from a rug I got from the clearance section from Home sense and made it under $10.

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I hand stitched it and super easy to make, need some basic sewing skills and voila, It make your bed more comfortable, cozy and complete.

you will need!

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  • Any soft rug
  • upholstery cotton thread
  • Heavy duty needle
  • Cotton Filling

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I made this draft to explain to you, follow the dotted line and use the cross stitch method or whatever you like with a heavy-duty needle and thick embroidery thread.

42325014_10156369803945791_8174429134978547712_nFold the rug in half and stitch all the three side and leave one side a bit open to fill the cotton filling. You can use a sewing machine but I preferred hand stitching.

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Its super easy and took only a couple of hours to make it, so if you find a cheap rug grab it quickly! You can check A DIY Lumber Pillow I made earlier.

 

Food & Recipes

Hara Masala Chicken

Green/ Hara Masala chicken is one of the famous Pakistani dishes. It’s very easy and delicious recipe that doesn’t take much time.

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Ingredients:

Chicken:1/2 kg

Yogurt:1/2 cup

Onion:1 sliced

Whole Peppercorn:4-5

Red chilli powder: (acc to taste..I have Extra Hot) 1/4 Tsp

Turmeric powder:1/2 tsp

Coriander powder:1 Tsp

Paprika powder:1 Tsp

Salt: To Taste

Oil:1/4 cup

For Green Masala:

Cilantro/Green Coriander: 1/2 Bunch.

Green Chillies: 5-6

Tomatoes: 2 chopped

Ginger:1/2 inch piece

Garlic:3-4 Cloves

RECIPE:

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  • Coarsely grind/blend all green masala ingredients, set aside.
  • Heat oil, fry onion till light golden brown, add whole black pepper.
  • Fry chicken, until it changes colour.
  • Add all dry masala, and saute it for 5 minutes.
  • Now add the Green Masala paste and saute chicken for 10 minutes.
  • Add yogurt and let the chicken cook till it tender, Add required water to make desired gravy.
  • Cover the pan for 10 minutes on low flame until oil separates.
  • Garnish with green chillies and cilantro

Serve hot with chapati, roti or rice. Enjoy!!

 

 

 

life style

Diary Post

Disclaimer: I am not an expert,  just sharing some tips to help you to get your stress out. Please get professional help as soon as possible if things are getting worst.

Its hard for me to get the courage to talk about social issues that we all are facing or at least somehow to become part of this negativity and my BFF suggested me to start writing about some issues ( that are not only affecting us but created by us too) who knows somebody somewhere needs it and hopefully gets benefited.

41262322_10156340715240791_3877449947448082432_nI am completely heartbroken, a couple of young ladies recently got affected by such negativity and commit suicide. Life is a beautiful journey but it has some ugly chapters and one has to read the whole book but without reading it to “The End” how come you can give up in the middle?.

I have been gone through some tough phase of life, like you, like EVERYBODY.. but I always try to look forward and count my blessing every single day, my positive attitude always motivates me to get rid of any negative thoughts and helps me to move on.

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Here are some of my personal notes that I always love to follow and try to get rid of negative thoughts, anxiety and stress to feel better.

  • Think positive and count your blessing, to get rid of the negative thoughts that affecting somehow.
  • Try to stay away from all sort of negativity, drama or anything that is affecting you, distance is always better.
  • It’s OK to be NOT ok...one can’t smile or happy all the time. Cry if you want to.
  • Do not compare your life with anyone, NEVER…the best thing You can do for you live the life you love.
  • Saying NO doesn’t make you a bad person.if you can’t do it, say NO ( it was one of the toughest things for me to do and I’m still working on it).
  • Sometimes it’s your illusions that are so negative that make the situation negative. There are always some better options, try to find one.
  • Don’t do any race with anyone, it could be status race, brand race or could be any, keep yourself away from such people and don’t be one of them.
  • Expect less from other people as much as you can, you will hurt less.
  • It’s not necessary to give an explanation or ask for an explanation if something happened unexpectedly. Just let it go!!
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  • Find a hobby or an activity (activities) that you love to do, it could be anything that you enjoy other than your routine house chores.
  • Talk to your mom, friend or sister/spouse, the one who can listen to you or at least cheer you up.
  • Go for a walk, window shopping or listen/watch you like. Take a time out just for yourself or the person you like.
  • Love whatever you have, your skin colour, your body shape also countless other blessings that we used to take for granted.
  • Talk to nature, do gardening or even try to catch a butterfly like me.
  • Don’t judge the book by the cover, everyone is unique. It’s your vision how you look at.
  • Go with the flow, it always surprises the way you never expect.

Life is beautiful, don’t give up just because you treated yourself like that. You are the most important person you know for yourself first, and for your kids, for your parents, spouse or your friends.

Try to get out of it by yourself, if not, ask for help.

Mental Health Line Canada:1866-531-2600

 

 

Food & Recipes

Paneer Karhai

I am back on blog after a break and sharing a simple paneer karhai that actually my elder sister’s recipe and it is so easy to make and can be served as a side dish if you have dawat.Less spices and less effort but so YUMMY!!

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Ingredients:

Paneer: 1 packet (I used Nanak Paneer).

Onion:sliced 1-2 medium

Tomatoes:2-3 chopped

Red Chilli Flakes:1-2 tsp

Salt:To taste

Turmeric Powder:1/2 tsp

Kasuri Methi:1 tsp

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Method:

Cut Paneer into 1/2 inch cubes,fry them all sides to light golden , keep aside.

Heat oil and saute onion to light golden brown,add tomatoes and cook until it become smooth paste.Add chilli flakes ,turmeric powder and salt.Cook till it separates the oil.

Mix fried paneer pieces with masala and add little water and cook for few minutes.

Sprinkle Kasuri methi(dried Fenugreek leaves) and leave it for 15 minutes on low heat.

Serve hot with Naan or chapati.Enjoy!!

 

 

 

Home Decor / DIY

DIY Kid’s Teepee

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Making a tent out of sofa cushions is one of the favourite things to do when my kids home. I often made a temporary tent with a sheet and pair of chair and Bilal loved spending hours inside. When I saw some DIY tents and Teepee tutorials on Pinterest and YouTube, I thought I should give a try just because I knew that whatever come after he will play inside happily.

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A not-so-perfect teepee but it’s surely a worth sharing project with you guys. I posted some stories on my Instagram while I was making it so let’s have a look my not-so-perfect Teepee(I will surely give another try but it’s literally a pain in a bum and a time taking project). Lots of stitching and measurement required with some sewing skills.

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I will share tutorial later just because I can’t keep you guys waiting, who asked me about the project follow-up plus I was so excited to show you guys the end result. Isn’t it cute?

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This is an outdoor/indoor TeePee/Tent and portable but does need little bit assembling every time I move. I put some blankets and cushion to make it more cozy and comfy.

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Not only my little one but the two elder kids love to hang out for hours too. I also add some battery operated LED light string and some DIY banner and garland (feather).

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I tried my best to take some decent pictures with a super excited kid. I need some paperwork before I post a tutorial so if you have any queries just let me know.

Food & Recipes

Italian Garden Salad

Salads are the mandatory in any cuisine or Dawat ,I love-making salad and often try with different homemade dressings.Garden Salad is one of the easy and healthy recipe especially when we do our BBQ and picnics during summer.20180721_130426

Today,Let’s make a healthy garden salad with homemade Italian dressing. All you need to do is,chop all vegetables and before serving, just toss everything with dressing. Truly, this is the best and easy chopped  Italian salad recipe I have ever made, with fresh and green vegetables in the homemade vinaigrette.

Ingredients:

Ice Burg Lattice/Cabbage: 1 Bunch

Broccoli:1 Bunch

Cucumber:1 Large

Green/Red /Yellow Pepper:1 each

Carrots:1-2 Julienne cut

Red kidney bean(boiled):1 can

Cherry Tomatoes:10-12 cut in halves

Olives:sliced

Red Onion:1/2 chopped

Corn:1/2 cup

Baby Turnips:7-8

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Dressing:

Olive oil:3 Tbs

Lemon juice:1 Tbs

White Vinegar:1/4 cup

Salt and Pepper: To Taste.

Mustard Paste:1/2 Tsp

Dried Herbs: Oregano & Basil: 1 Pinch each

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Mix all ingredients in a glass bottle shake and toss your salad and serve.You can add vegetables of your choice and of course availability.Check out Cold Pasta Salad and enjoy your summer.

 

life style · Mid Week Fave!

Mid Week Faves!!

Getting candles in the mail is a joy forever, for me yes it is. If you know me(or even not) send some flowers and candles and you know what…You dont need to ask me..I will love you more!!

Diana from ” Joyful Home” sent me some soy candles and I loved them all.20180707_211804

These soy candles are 100 % soy wax which is eco-friendly and free from harmful toxins. I never tried soy candles before and it is safe for everyone(Kids/Pets). I loved the smell and it works really well to absorb any strong cooking smell(desi cooking you know).

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If you have a big space these candles especially “Muskoka S’Mores” and “Maple Syrup” are strong enough to fill the space up quickly with an aroma.

20180707_211713.jpg“Water Melon Slushie” and “Bubblegum” are Mild and soft /fruity smell, that lift your mood up. She sent me some small samples of wax melt and can’t wait to try them all.20180708_221557

These hand-poured candles are something you can buy for yourself or for your friend or can buy as a gift for your co-worker or even stock them up for holiday or eid gifts. You can use the discount code “JOY25” for 25% off on any purchase at joyfulhome on her Esty shop.

p.s: A giveaway is on its way💖!!

Home Decor / DIY

Green Lamps Make Over

Thank You So much, Everyone!!… I didn’t know I will get so many compliments and kind words on my yesterday’s post Here.

36941125_10156206592435791_3872775747424747520_nAs I promised I am here to share a fun makeover (sooner is better for me). I scored these lamp base from online bidding site and if I am not wrong, I paid just $10 for the set(Not Bad At All ).

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I put my bid just because I loved the shape but unexpectedly the condition of the lamps was good. I  liked the bronze colour but didn’t match with my decor at all. I wanted to do a fun makeover that instantly pop up the space.

37102559_10156208669345791_129714884286873600_nThis is the only before picture I have, it had little rust on the lower part but overall it was in great shape. I wanted a quick makeover and spray paint works great especially on metal but let me share some basic tips before paint any piece.

  • Clean  (wood/metal) with wipes or glass cleaners, remove all dirt and grime.
  • Lightly sand with fine grade sandpaper.
  • Wipe off again.

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I love spray paint because it gives instant results. I used Rust-oleum Painter’s Touch in “Meadow Green” in the gloss finish. It has primer so I didn’t use any primer before starting to use spray paint. Always try to use spray paint in the well-ventilated area, cover the area with old papers or sheet. Tape the cord and lamp kit (the area you don’t want to paint)with painter tape and paper.

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Shake well the paint can and hold it and start painting from 10 cm away from the surface. It will give maximum coverage if you use too close it will give paint drips. Wait between each coat and give multiple coats as needed. I  waited at least 2 hours between the coats and gave three coat and left overnight after a final coat.

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I love spray paint and it perfect for someone Be-sabra like me who wants instant results. I always use spray paint for small projects, especially on metals. It gives a smooth shiny coverage since it has a gloss finish.

 

37121538_10156209770770791_4421234700232687616_nI love the final look after I turn them on. The shades are also scored from the Wal-Mart Clearance section and marked down 50%. Yes, many of you asked me how did I get such cool piece for few bucks, will share my Budget/ Thrifty scores and tips soon….It is an addiction and I am literally addicted!!

 

Home Decor / DIY · life style

Pottery Barn Inspired Mirror (DIY)

36929122_10156205303745791_3604749880980930560_nSome of you probably know I am a DIY addicted. I get inspired by taking window shopping(without kids obviously) around home decor stores like Pier 1 Imports, Home Sense and Pottery Barn, but their price tags sometimes give me a mini heart attack.

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I just love these “Eagan Multipanel Mirrors “available at PB website but their price range is $400 -$ 1000+, depending on the size and style. I would never ever pay this much for a mirror(even won’t accept it as a gift) that only for decor purpose. I know people buy such things at this super expensive price-tag and I don’t have any issues (with other people) but when I can make a similar version(not exactly obviously)which make me happier then why would I  be breaking my bank?

(SO sorry for bad pictures just because I made this last year and captured all pictures from my Tablet).

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This is one of the projects that I loved more than original inspiration after it is done. I spent around $50 for this DIY.

BaseBoard: I got from Home Depot

Bevelled Mirror/Candle Plates: 25-30 (depending upon size) I bought from Dollar Store, You can find similar at Any craft store or Walmart.

Industrial Grade adhesive: I prefer E-6000 over Gorilla glue.

Cut the baseboard  the desired size i.e 20*25, I measure the size by putting mirrors on the base and trim the excess wood off. I put four mirrors on each horizontal row and set mirrors in five vertical rows.

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Use E-6000 on the back of each mirror and carefully glued it to the base. Leave it overnight put some weight ( but not very heavy that breaks the mirror), I used the mild weight like plant pots, some wooden light-weight items

37062146_10156205303375791_432167829890924544_nIf you like you can use the back of any large frame but make sure the baseboard/frame has to be thick enough to hold the weight of mirrors. (You just need to be sure what are you using since mirror has weight but on other hand, are delicate to handle, can be broken easily.)

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Isn’t it so easy? I put this beauty on my server which stores all my dinnerware and dishes. I will make another one soon for my basement (needs a makeover) but a different version for sure.

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You can either hang on the wall or even use it like me, it is beautiful, isn’t it? I got so many compliments from my guests. I even stained this second-hand MCM server/buffet (I love this piece of furniture) and painted these cool green lamps, both are garage sale/online auctions finds. Want to know the detail of this makeover??

36929122_10156205303745791_3604749880980930560_nIf I tell you that everything on this server is either I painted or my thrift/garage sale find. don’t ask me the price, it will give you a real shock..lol…want to know more just let me know…;-)

 

 

Mid Week Fave!

Mid-Week Fave!!

We are having extreme hot days and You won’t believe because of that we had to cancel our outdoor picnic and BBQ. Temperature is a bit extreme side when its winter one can’t even imagine about the heat warnings and vice-versa, but I have literally no complaints.

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We had a couple of family gatherings over the long weekend, that ended up the last-minute(unplanned) trip to Harbourfront. A water taxi ride and boardwalk in nice cozy weather, it was a perfect end of a weekend.

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I bought these Bali style earrings from the temporary vendor at Harbourfront. I love finding traditional stuff and every time I get an exciting piece from there. Go n check if you are in GTA.

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I am a Chaat-Papri girl and love savoury over sugar. Do you like chocolate or finger chips extra hot?

 

 

 

Home Decor / DIY

DIY Pom-Pom BookMarks

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If You are a book reader and love colours then join me in the five-minute craft challenge. A DIY, you can try with your kids and have some fun by giving this book tag to your favourite person or your (Bookworm)Friend.

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I made this cute book tags/marks and it takes hardly 5 minutes. You need a pom-pom (I bought some from Michael’s), paper clips and a hot glue gun.

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I have a crush on rose gold nowadays and I bought rose gold paper clips from “Urban Planet”, you can use any type, size or colour that’s easily available craft stores or dollar stores.

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All you need to do is, hot glue your pom-pom on the paperclip and make sure the clip is upside down. Put a little pressure and leave it to dry for few minutes. I always use rubber pad whenever I used my hot glue gun.

20180627_104935 I add this Book tag on the thank you card along with some Homemade Eucalyptus Pink Bath Salt for the year-end teacher’s gift this year.

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I love these tags and made few for myself too…Isn’t it so cute, tag the favourite person you want to share with!!

 

Food & Recipes

Baklava

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Baklava is very rich and sweet pastry layered with chopped nuts. It is one of the most famous desserts of Geek/Turkish cuisine that looks a bit difficult but actually, it’s not. I made first time on this Eid and shared on my Insta stories and many of you asked me for the recipe and I had no clue at that time how it will turn out but trust me it is one of the most simple desserts I have ever tried.

Let’s make it!!

Ingredients:

Puff  / Fillo Pastry.

Assorted chopped nuts: I used Almond, Walnuts and Pistachios.

Butter:1/2 cup(melted)

Sugar:2 tsp

Egg: 1 for brushing

For Sugar Syrup:

Sugar 2.5 cups

Water:2 cups

Lemon Juice:1/2 Tsp

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Combine sugar, lemon juice and water in a saucepan. Allow it to boil and keep stirring until sugar dissolves completely. Reduce heat.

Mixed nuts with butter in a bowl and add 2 tsp sugar. Mix everything well.

Pre-heat oven to 300.

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In a baking tray, grease the bottom with butter. Place the first sheet and layer it with nut mixture, place another pastry sheet, brush with butter and repeat. Brush the top with beaten egg and sprinkle leftover nuts.

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Cut into 3 * 3-inch squares and Bake at 300 for 45 mins or until it is golden brown. Remove from oven, pour prepared warm syrup and allow to saturate it well.

20180615_141922Let it cool and serve.

 

 

Home Decor / DIY · life style

DIY Eid Wreath

Eid is less than a week away, Hope the last days go well and we make the maximum benefits of this blessed month of Ramadan. I already start missing Ramadan but we are also excited for Eid, although we don’t have Eid holidays as such(like back home) but will be going to get a day off that will proceed to the long weekend if it’s on Friday.

Preparing for Eid is so much fun, I already shopped for Eid dresses and jewellery. Along with that, I do some extra to make the day more special.

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I always decorate my home with fairy lights, banners and garland but this time I wanted to make a wreath for my front door and I am happy to share this DIY with you. I made it under $15 and mostly dollar store items.

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SUPPLIES:

Any basic Wreath I bought this from Wal-Mart for $5.(dollar store has some similar ones and also wire/foam)

Artificial Flowers (of your choice)

Ribbon.

Scissors.

Alphabet Stickers and poster board.

(I bought some stuff as shown in the picture that I didn’t use at all )

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I didn’t follow any rule, just start from the right side, I used the floral twines and then start inserting the orange and white flowers. I simply twisted the flower wire and make it secure at the back. I didn’t use any extra cord or wire, you may need if you use the wire ones.

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Fill up the empty space with more flowers and finish it with some branches of orchid and Snapdragon. Try different combination according to your taste and decor.

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I made an Eid greeting sign and hang with ribbon, I used my E-6000 to secure it with the wreath.  I had countless ideas in my mind but I love the simple Eid greeting. I Just cut the card and paste the alphabet stickers.

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I  use a suction hook to hang it with my front door. You can hang an Eid card or wooden sign, or even make any welcome note to greet your guest.

Isn’t it so pretty and affordable…I fall in love with this…I will add fairy lights a night before to make it more festive.

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Lots of things going on here, I am going to send Eid gifts/goodies to my kid’s school friends to share the joy and make our Eid occasion more special, will try to share ya…! More posts are hopefully on their way.

so, how you guys doing on your Eid ? have you bought your eid dress etc, do share if you make anything extra to make it more special….share some with me…Happy Eid everyone!!

 

 

 

life style

Five Things I Miss The Most About Ramadan When Fasting Abroad!

When I say I miss Pakistan so much, I really mean it. It’s not easy to live far away from your country and family when you are missing everything badly almost every other day. Ramadan and Eid are the days when we missed the most. My husband and I always talk about our childhood days and share our Ramadan and Eid stories with kids.

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Let’s share with you guys too…here are some most missed things!!

Azaan and Siren:

Yes, I can install all the apps and reminders on my phone but hearing an actual Azan on a loudspeaker five times is such a blessing. I used to live in a neighbourhood where the mosque was just a minute away, That Azaan sound still echoing me since then, it was the most beautiful voice I had ever heard.

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Do you remember, the warnings that issued right before the sehri end was something I simply missed. I remember they used to say”Hazrat sehri ka time khtam honye wala hay,khana peena FORAN bandh krdein warna apka roza nahi hoga”.

That Dhool Walas:

If you are a girl who really annoyed with that drum sound that used to wake up 1 hour before sehri and you really don’t have to make as such anything just because you’re the youngest and you have a super sweet mom than high-five(I used to help in Iftar).I am sure they probably un-aware our love-hate relationship and we only see them in person when they come to get their Eidi(money) again with drumming at the door. I didn’t know one day I would be missing that thing too, but I literally do.

That AfterNoon Nap:

Living in a non-muslim country is not easy, you don’t get half days off during Ramadan. My kids have same school timings so that my husband work hours too but in Pakistan, I remember we get half days and that nap I simply missed that was taken right after zuhar prayers for a couple of hours.

Exchange of Iftar on daily basis:

I used to live in a lovely neighbourhood and we often exchange dishes but during Ramadan, it was done on daily basis. My mom used to make extra Iftar and share with our neighbours and I just love to go and hand out those iftar trays full of yummy iftar to my friend’s house and getting back from them was even more fun.

Rush In markets and food street:

Oh God….this is the most missed memory I always have…the lineups to get samosa and other fried item and after iftar the rush in shopping malls and markets to get eid stuff is I missed the most.

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Traffic Jam:

Yes!! its funny but I do miss that traffic Jam when everyone was in rush to get home before iftar. I myself had broken my fast on the road a couple of time and I remember we used to keep ” dates ” with us to break the fast just in case.

I know it’s a long list that goes on…I can write a lot on this but… Hey..why don’t you guys add some if you are living in Pakistan or abroad like me which is the most favourite or missed thing of the blessed month of Ramadan?.

 

Food & Recipes

Mango and Chikoo Shake

Mangoes are everyone’s first love, I do like it but not go crazy. It’s so true we hardly get them here at expensive rates and it gives a tiny heart attack if they are not up to the expectations.

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During Ramadan, a chilled glass of Roh-Afza is a must but I always make some shakes and lassi to have some of our calories back. Mango shake is family favourite drink but also try different fruits with it.

It’s so much fun to try different smoothies and shakes. I change ingredients every other day. Yesterday, I tried them with Chikoo fruit or Mud-Apples and it turned out great.

It’s very yummy and healthy let ‘s make it!!

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Chikoo Fruit: 3-4 ripped (peeled/de-seeded)

Sugar:4 Tbs (according to your taste)

Milk :3 cups

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Put everything in a blender and blend it for about 2-3 minutes.

Served chilled and enjoy!

life style · Mid Week Fave!

Mid-Week Fave!!

20180521_123323I am rocking in my backyard chair and having some sunlight to get my vitamin D that we get here after ages…after 8 months…. Yes, summer is in full swing and so am I…love this Me-time while my kids at school. We are fasting almost 17 hours this year and pretty good this time.No complaint at all…just some lack of sleep issues.

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May is always been busy for us to spend some time in our yard cleaning and gardening. My husband does all the major work, I only help him like a Chota ..lol..we went to local nursery on Victoria Monday and got some vegetables/fruit plants along with roses and other flowers for our back and front yards.

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These fragrance sachets are Dollar Tree find, You can use it around the house especially under your wardrobe and closets or hang them in your washroom. I am using them and just love the fragrance they have.

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This is one of the most missed Pakistani fruits after mangoes here. Falsay is tropical fruit and available for short period of time and you get once in awhile. Thanks to hubby, he bought a basket full of falsay from a local desi grocery shop. You may check your local grocery shop right now otherwise won’t get it after.

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Last but not least, I got these Islamic bookmarks and paper lanterns along with zakat calculator in the mail from Islamic Relief Fund a week ago. Currently, they are accepting Sadqa and zakat funds online for Muslims in Syria and Palestine.

So how you doing ? do share some of your happenings…till then,

Have a great weekend!

 

 

 

life style

Some Updates!!

Ramadan Mubarak!

Life is the most unpredictable thing ever, it really gives you surprises and goosebumps. I had so many plans for this month and wanted to write some posts/DIY related to Mothers day and Ramadan.

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A few weeks ago I shared my post related to cancer here. Although I was requested to write more about it but had zero courage just because of my dear friend was fighting with it. A friend I always used to admire because of the positivity, hope and courage she had and like an elder sister to me. It’s always hard to see her in pain and go through all the medications and series of chemotherapy she had in past 3-4 years.

She passed away last week in this blessed month of Ramadan. May Allah rest her soul in peace (Ameen). I really don’t know what to write or share. Please remember her (and all other deceased) in your prayers.

Surely, time heals the wound but it always gives a scar that never filled. She has a special place and always will be missed. We all need to move on and so am I …that’s how life goes on!!

Thanks, everyone who missed my posts and asked. I will try to be more regular here on the blog and break the hiatus. I want to do some changes in blog layout and maybe start some new blog series.

Let me know what type of posts you want to see in coming weeks. How all you doing?

 

life style

Fine Motor Skills(Part 2)…!!

I shared some activities that help your kids to improve his fine motor skills, You can check here. Today, I am sharing some more activities you can do at home.

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If you don’t find a grip,(I know its a hassle to get it easily) there are some easy techniques you may try. Get a pom-pom and ask your child to hide it under his last two fingers.

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If you don’t find a pom-pom you can use any small item like a cotton ball or tissue paper. It helps your child to understand and make a  pencil hold easily.

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Playing with play dough/ putty is a great way to strengthen your child’s hand and finger muscles.

Putty is harder than play dough, it helps to strengthen the hand and finger muscles. Hide some small animals or his favourite sea creatures or dinosaurs inside the putty and ask him to find them. Putty is actually harder than play dough and needs a little bit force to stretch.

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You can use “play dough”, try different techniques and allow him to make different shapes. Play dough is easily available and cheap as compared to Putty.

Let me know how do you work with your kid’s Fine notor skills and share your concerns.

You can find all stuff at local book/craft stores, or online.

 

life style

Let’s Talk:Your Child’s Fine Motor Skills

Fine motor skill (dexterity) is the coordination of muscles to perform the basic movement that helps a kid perform his everyday task. From holding a pencil to spoon or opening the lunch box, these muscles help the child to use and grasp the objects.

31206205_10156022484250791_2214706767528432107_nI am sharing some techniques that can help you to improve your child’s fine motor skills especially under age of 6 year.

My little one has some difficulties in holding a pencil, I am working on his grasp and writing skills(that’s prescribed by an Occupational specialist and his teachers ) nowadays and it works.I thought I should share some easy techniques that can be done easily at home.

Let’s discuss!!

Working with Scissors:

If I say this is the best purchase I have made so far, it’s so true.I know it’s quite expensive but If you have just a kid craft scissor, it really helps.

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Get some printouts or draw the shapes, like a square or round and ask your child to follow the line.I bought this revolving scissor caddy, I shared Here.Bilal loves using them so much and it helps him strengthening his muscles.

Pencil Grips:

I bought these pencil grips from ” wish.com”. My order came pretty early than expected.It comes in a set of three.You can also find some pencil grips at Scholar’s Choice or Chapters or even Daraz.pk.

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It is made of the rubber/silicon, these grips give support to hold a pencil.You need to put pencil and child’s index finger to the attached rings.It gives support to hold it firm and ease of writing or drawing.

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You can find a different type of grips but I like this one is the best.I will share some more techniques that help to improve child’s fine motor skills in a couple of days.

Let me know if you have any tips/concern to share,sooner we work on this it will helps the child to perform better.

 

 

 

Mid Week Fave!

Mid Week Fave!!

After a long time, I am back with some of the happenings here.I wanted to write favourites but the weather is not so my favourite.20180414_150453.jpg

Life is pretty much same here, we had an ice storm over the weekend.Its been a week since we are having freezing rain and ice pellets. I am literally done with winter this year.Hopefully, we will be having some bright and sunny days soon.

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I bought these stones from “Organic & Glass” and I love that store. They have very cute and unique handmade items like jewelry, home decor, and other fun stuff.

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Sorry for the bad picture but I will show you what will I be doing with these felted wool balls.So stay tuned for a little DIY.

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I was looking for embroidered patches for long.Flowers and roses are quite In nowadays.I am gonna do something creative with this soon…I know, I have a pile of pending projects.

I would love to hear what you guys doing…Please Do Share!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Food & Recipes

Banana Bread

20180411_183145If You like plain cakes with your tea or coffee like me then you would love this easy Banana Bread for sure.It’s easy to make and literally hard to resist.I added nuts and chocolate chips to attract my kids to have this healthy treat.20180411_172922.jpg

Banana is very healthy fruit and often get over ripped soon.I normally collect them and keep in the fridge, or even stored it in the freezer.You can easily make different shakes and banana bread after.

20180411_183021I am sharing a very easy recipe and I am sure you will love it.You can make it at high tea or even take it with you as a sweet gift to visit someone.

Let’s start.

Ingredients:

Banana:3-4 very ripe

Butter softened:1/2 cup

All Purposed Flour:2 1/2 Cups

Eggs : 2

Butter Milk: 1/2 cup

Sugar: 1.5 Cup

Baking Powder: 1 Tsp

Baking Soda: 1/2 Tsp

Vanilla Essence: 1 Tsp

Nuts(Almonds & Walnuts)

Chocolate Chips.

Method:

In a medium bowl, mash bananas with a masher or a fork to measure approx 1.5 cups.

In a large bowl, mix together sugar and butter with an electric beater at medium to high speed.Stir in eggs until well mixed.

Add bananas, buttermilk, and vanilla until smooth.

Add and stir in flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt just until it moistened.Add nuts and chocolate chips. 20180411_155945.jpg

Preheat oven to 350° F and Bake the mixture in a loaf pan for about 1 hour or until golden brown and toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

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Cool in pan for 15 minutes.Enjoy it with little butter on top!!

[You can make buttermilk(Available at stores as well) at home by adding 1 tsp lemon juice or vinegar in 1/2 cup of cold milk.Wait for 10 minutes and use it.]

 

 

Food & Recipes

Baigan Ka Bhurta

Baigan Ka Bhurta is one of my favorite dish(es) and me love-making it with different versions.Sometimes I  Roast eggplant in the oven and sometimes over the flame or even in the microwave.I don’t boil it but if you like you certainly do it too.

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Let’s make a quick 30 min recipe and I am sure you will love it as much I do!!!!

Ingredients

  • Egg Plant(Baingan):1-2 big round
  • Tomatoes:3-4 chopped
  • Onion: 2  medium sliced
  • Crushed Chilli pepper:1 Tsp
  • Turmeric powder:1 Tsp
  • Zeera (Cumin):1 Tsp (Roasted and Crushed)
  • Whole coriander:1 Tsp(Roasted and Crushed)
  • Salt: to taste
  • Tamarind paste:2 Tbs

Method:

I usually roast eggplant over the flame as I have Gas Stove but if you have electric or glass top stove you can bake foil wrapped Eggplant at 375 F for 15-20 min or microwave it for 3-4 minutes.29595474_10155970091985791_6112200868491305466_n

  • Heat oil and fry onion in a pot.
  • After onion becomes golden put in salt, red chilies, coriander and cumin, fry together.
  • Add chopped Tomatoes, cook until it becomes a paste.
  • Now add Mashed and peeled eggplant and let it cook for 15 minutes.
  • Add tamarind paste and leave for 10 minutes on low flame until oil separates.
  • Garnish with Green chilies and Cilantro, serve hot with Roti or boiled rice.bhurta.jpg

It is so easy and yummy recipe that takes hardly 30 minutes.Do you love eggplants as much I do?

 

 

 

 

 

Food & Recipes

Onion Chilies!

Personally, I don’t like meat dishes much, I love eating simple vegetarian food but detailed (with salad/chutni/achar) etc etc. It was a great feedback when I posted  Achari Green chillies recipe a few weeks ago.As I promised, I will share another recipe with you guys, Remember?so here you go!!

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My mom used to make another recipe with these green chillies and I love making it.A very simple recipe literally ready in 10-15 minutes and doubles the taste of your simple food (Daal Chawal).

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Ingredients:

Green Chillies: 8-10

Onion: 1 medium sliced

Zeera(cumin): 1tbsp

Salt: to taste

Tamarind paste: 2-3 tbsp

Oil: 2 tbsp

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Method:

 

  • Cut green chillies.
  • Heat oil and saute onion.
  • Now add zeera and fry it until both onion and zeera change colour.
  • Add green chillies and fry together.Season with salt and tamarind paste.
  • Cover it with lid and cook it on medium low for 5-10 minutes.
  • Serve and store in the refrigerator up to 3 weeks.

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You can serve it with any vegetarian food, daal, or even I love it with plain Paratha. Do let me know what type of food you like and is there any specific detail you are required before you serve?please share!

life style

Get Motivated!

20180309_144024Like everyone, I do have some low-key days when I just don’t want to do anything.Sometimes there is a reason but most of the time its nothing.It’s perfectly normal to feel down but it’s YOU who has to lift your self up.It doesn’t matter how much busy you are, get at least 1 hour for yourself.

Here things I love to do for myself.

Start Your Day Positively: Try to wake up as early as possible, I don’t know about other people but if I wake up late like after 9 Am it would be one of my least productive day for sure.Start your day with prayers and be Thankful for the life.

Have a Positive Start: If you think positive it will surely move on you positively.As someone said you can not live a positive life with a negative mind, I totally agreed.

Plan Your Day: Do your chores done as soon as possible, It makes you stress-free  trust me.For example,Making my bed as soon I am off to bed, automatically makes my home clean.

Take a Bath and Dressed up: If I am feeling down, I try to get my basic chores done as soon as possible. I mostly  sprinkle my bath salt and have a long spa bath.Bath salt relaxes and takes my stress out.Dress up myself nicely and put some makeup on.By doing this, my day surely productive and better than being a couch potato in my PJs whole day.

Get Some ME Time: As home stayed mom I don’t have much social life.My life revolves around my kids.It’s very important for everyone including myself to get some ME time to get the sh*t out.I love to go for window shopping alone, mostly Home goods / Thrift stores and get inspired. If I don’t have time to go out ,I just put my favorite face mask on and relax.

Give Yourself a Gift: I live for flowers and I can die as well, it automatically lift your mood on at least mine.I get my flowers whenever I go for grocery, it’s cheaper than buying from a flower shop.I am not asking to buy brand named expensive stuff and break your bank. For me ,buying an ice cream is a treat to yourself to enjoy.

Be Creative: Do whatever you like, I normally motivate my self by doing a DIY or some crafting even making a new recipe lift my mood up.

Be Gentle: For yourself and for others, do not take things to your heart.Trust me I used to be a very sensitive person(still I am), I had been taken things to my heart without saying and being hurt for several days.It did nothing just hurting my own self, shattered and depressed. I have learned that Just Forget and Move on.Mistakes can happen and it’s you who has to learn, you can’t teach/force anyone.

If you don’t have something to say positive, it’s better to say nothing.Encourage people around you and motivate them as well.

Happy Friday guys..its last day of March break, hope you have a good one!!

 

Mid Week Fave!

Mid-Week Fave!!

 

After a super wild winter ,finally we are having nice and bright days.Today is last day of February and officially spring is few weeks away.Count down has already begun…lol!!

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This weekend we went to see “Sesame Street” live show at Hershey’s Center  .Bilal loves this show so watching live with him was so much fun.

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I ordered these hand stamped necklaces for my self and my daughter Aleeza, she loves twinning with me now adays and so do I….aren’t they cute?

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I bought this handmade  Boho basket from Winner’s, I don’t know why but I love handmade and embroidered stuff.

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If you are book lover like me (well I used to be) than library always your To-Go destination.Whitby Public Library has a huge collection of all types of books even I always borrow Urdu novels from here.

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I just love the interior( and exterior )design of this Main branch.You can find a wide selection of all type of books and DVDs.I am looking forward to attend Spring /March Break programs with kids at the library.

What your favorite places to go…mine are always library and Thrift stores.😊

 

 

 

 

Food & Recipes

Home Made Sugar Free Gummies(Halal)

20180222_124524Who doesn’t like gummies, my mom always sends me halal Chili Mili whenever someone come from Pakistan. It’s hard for us to find halal gummies other than Halal grocery stores and whenever we find they are mostly sugar coated.I tried sugar-free gummies at home with 100% juice and Its super easy and healthy treats for kids.

 

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You will need

Any Juice (I used 100 % orange juice)

Natural Sweetener: Honey or Maple syrup

Any Halal Flavored Jello:100 gm (1/2 pkg)

Unsweetened Gelatin  (Halal):3 Tsp

Lemon Juice:1 Tsp

Mold or an ice cube tray.

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  • Warm 2 cups of juice and before it reaches to a boil add 3 Tsp of gelatin powder.Simmer it until the gelatin dissolves.
  • Add any regular flavored jello, I used strawberry flavor.
  • Mix it well, now add maple syrup or honey according to your taste.I used about 2 Tbs of Honey.
  • Add lemon juice
  • Carefully pour the hot mixture into the mold, refrigerate for an hour.
  • Store in fridge for 1 month.

You can use fresh fruit and vegetable juice like orange, carrots or kiwi fruit.Isn’t so easy to make your very own sugar-free gummies.You can even coat it with sugar if you like.

life style · Mid Week Fave!

Mid-Week Fave!!

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Life is so precious yet unpredictable, you never know how it surprises you.I know people who are suffering from life-threatening disease and causes are still unknown.It’s really hard to see your loved ones in pain.Every single day I always thankful and feel blessed to have a happy and healthy family.(Allhumdillah)

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I got this Betty Crocker’s cookbook from Dollarama a few days ago, it is specifically written by cancer survivors for cancer patients. They shared their experiences throughout their recovery. They also shared tips to boost energy and spirit during illness and chemotherapy. How to recover and start routine along with some quick and healthy recipes with doctor’s Notes. There is some bonus section on Breast cancer. In short, it’s a complete book I have ever seen so far!

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I bought this book to get to know how I can start a healthy lifestyle and also how to help if someone is fighting this battle. There is always a hope and support to defeat cancer( or any illness) is possible. Great book, I am thinking to share some quick tip from this book as soon as I finish it(comment if you want me asap). Please Pray for my friend who is fighting with cancer nowadays…please pray for her and for everyone!!

(This is NOT a sponsored post).y for

 

 

Home Decor / DIY

Eucalyptus Pink Bath Salt

received_10155808341005791I was running out of DIY  Bath Salt that I made a couple of weeks ago. My whole family  love it, especially during this cold and flu season.This time I tried the Combo of Pink Himalaya Salt and Eucalyptus essential oil.Eucalyptus essential oil is the main ingredient of Vick’s and has exact same Vick’s smell.If you have Flu or sinus than give this DIY Bath salt a try.

Let’s discuss the recipe!!

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Pink Himalayan Salt: 1 cup

Epsom Salt: 1 cup

Sea Salt: 1/4 cup

Baking soda:1/2 cup(optional)

Eucalyptus Essential Oil: 10-12 drops

Olive Oil: 2 Tsp

Red Food color: Few drops (optional)

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Mix  Pink Himalayan Salt, Epsom salt, Sea Salt and Baking soda together.I hand mixed it or use any spoon.

Add  Eucalyptus essential oil and Olive oil.If you like add few drops of red food color.Mix everything  Well.Store in airtight glass jar or container.

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Sprinkle a generous amount of bath salt into warm running water and allow to dissolve.I just love using this recipe especially when I am tired or have back/body pain. It works like a charm and relaxes my muscles and also helps and give a relief in the sinus or flu.

Home Decor / DIY

Homemade Toilet Cleaning Fizzies

blog.jpgIt’s really hard to keep my home clean and tidy all the time with a busy family. I do enjoy cleaning up messes and cooking but toilet cleaning is one of my least favorite chores.I saw many tutorials on Pinterest and online and end up making toilet cleaning tablets with 3 natural ingredients without any harsh chemicals.

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Baking soda:1 cup

Citric Acid:1/2 Cup

Dishwashing Detergent: 2 Tbs

20180127_163707Mix baking soda and citric acid together and remove lumps.

I used my favorite  Dawn detergent and mix it well .combine everything together.

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Use an ice-cube tray and press the mixture firmly to make a shape of tablet.leave it overnight at room temperature.

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I used these tablets mostly at night-time to fizz and disinfect my toilet bowl.Just drop a tablet, let it fizz and flush.It cleans and removes odors.

 

 

 

Home Decor / DIY

DIY Fridge Magnets

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If you remember I showed this super cute table weights here.Honestly speaking I didn’t buy it for this purpose never intended to use them as table weights.  I just wanted to have them because these are super cute.I thought let be more practical and make a good use of these adorable clips.

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I bought magnets from a craft store and You may find it easily at dollar stores.I used my all-time favorite super glue E-6000. I glued the magnet to my table clips and waited 2 hours.That’s it…Isn’t so simple and easy …doesn’t need any advanced skills!!

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These are super cute and has a clip as well so I could use it on my fridge or magnetic board and hang my pictures with the clip.

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You can make your very own fridge magnet by using a craft magnet and glue.It’s really fun to have it….isn’t it? I still have some craft magnets left so wait and see what I am going to do with those left overs…yes I love leftover…;-)

Food & Recipes

Achari Chilies

My mom used to make green chilies and It compliments perfectly with vegetarian food especially all-time favorite Daal Chawal. We hardly find Pakistani green chilies here maybe once a year but whenever we bought I always make like my mom does(Two ways) !!

let’s make Achari Mirch first together.

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Achari Masala Green chilies

Green chilies: 10-12

Masala Ingredients:

Whole Red pepper: 3-5

coriander whole: 1TBS

Aniseed (Saunf): 1TBS

Black Seed(Kalonji ):1/2 tsp

Mustard seed (Rayee Dana): 1/2 tsp

Turmeric powder: 1 Tsp

Salt: To Taste

Tamarind paste: 1/4 cup20180110_174832

METHOD

  • Coarsely grind above ingredients in a coffee grinder, mixed it with tamarind paste.
  •  Take chili and put a cut on the center
  • Now fill the mixture inside the chilies.
  • Heat 2 tsp oil and fry it.
  • Add 2 tsp of remaining tamarind paste.
  • Put chilies on medium-low flame.

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Fry it and leave it on low heat with the lid on for few minutes.If you Cant find this Pakistani Chilies I often use Jalapeno Peppers as an alternative.

You can serve hot and also refrigerate it over two weeks in a dry container with a lid on.I also make Achari Bhindi(Okra) with the same method.This is the best thing you can serve along with simple food but unbeatable for sure…try it and ENJOY!!

 

 

 

Home Decor / DIY

DIY Stove Simmer

 

If you are a person like me who loves scents around your home, this DIY is something you will love for sure.I promised!This simmer is so good, just fill the pot with water and add some natural ingredients from your kitchen and it fills your home with a divine scent in few minute or at least no more strong masala smell of your desi cooking roam around, it will absorb everything.

 

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This is the best thing you could do for a quick and cheap from your kitchen.

You will need

  • Cranberries
  • Oranges
  • Apple
  • Rosemary
  • Cinnamon sticks
  • Cloves

Take 2 cups of water, add all above ingredients and keep the flame Medium high, bring it to boil. Leave it to medium-low and simmer it.
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You can use it for a couple of days, just add water and simmer it.I always have it, especially when my guest over.It smells sweet and natural.You may freeze these dry ingredients (I always make extra) in a zip lock for a quick and handy as I do always.Take it out, add water and simmer.ENJOY!!

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You may change or add other ingredients like Bay leaves,Lemon, grapefruit or even Mint Leaves.Simmer your favorite ingredients and enjoy your very own natural diffuser. If You like I have Shared  DIY pot Pourri, check this out Here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Home Decor / DIY

DIY PepperMint Bath Salt

I am obsessed with Bath Bombs and Bath salts nowadays.I love making them especially when my kids home and help.Its so easy and take only 15 mins to DIY.I used essential oil to make bath salt more soothing and relaxing.

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If you are following my blog and have plans to make Hand Made Bath Bombs than this DIY Bath salt recipe has almost same ingredients. Let’s start!

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Ingredients.

Epsom salt: 1 cup

Sea Salt: 1 cup

Baking soda : 1/4 cup

Olive oil (Any oil ): 1 Tbs

Peppermint Essential Oil: 15-20 drops

Food color and a glass jar.

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  • Mix Epsom salt and sea salt together, add baking soda.
  • Mix olive oil, whisk it to remove any lumps. Add essential oil and food color and mix well.
  • Use funnel and store in a glass jar, You can use it up to 6 months.

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You can transform your bathtub into a tranquil spa with these DIY PepperMint bath salts.soaking in these beautifully scented salt with the essential oil will leave your body feeling rejuvenated and skin soft and moisturized.

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If you are tired or have back pain.Sprinkle a generous amount of bath salt into warm running water and allow to dissolve.step into the bath and Enjoy!!

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This bath salt will give you a relief especially after postpartum and helps in healing if you have stitches.

Mid Week Fave!

Mid week Fave

After bone-chilling cold days, we are having few better days when no snow or even worst freezing rain.If you tired of this weather updates I am so sorry, can’t help!!

 

I bought this handmade Rafiki Bracelet from Sears liquidation, I just love the noble cause behind this.

26229916_10155739142350791_7867185654805628207_nIt’s handmade and you can either wear as a necklace or wrap around on your wrist as a bracelet.Each bracelet gives clean water to avoid waterborne diseases.

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Few month back I bought this hair oil but always too lazy to apply it.My hair used to be very healthy when I was back home.I had hair fall after(Change in climate/water etc) and that’s even worse after I had my babies.I have started using this oil and I would say it’s one of my favorite hair product I’d ever used.

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We all know Ludo is all time favorite board game especially playing this “Snakes and Ladders” is always fun.I had an amazing time playing today with my kids.

What type of Board Games are your family favorite..Please Do share!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mid Week Fave!

Mid week Fave

I can’t  believe we already entered in 2018, time really flies.This post going to be my first post of the year 2018, what the great year 2017 we had.It was a super busy year with lots of family trips and gatherings.

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We are having extreme and record-breaking cold days.Its so good my kids are home and I am not doing much except watching random movies with kids and just relax in warm and cozy home sweet home.

20171230_165107.jpgMy baby is five-year old and we celebrated his birthday with close family.It’s always nice to have a family around you who can cheer us up!!….He loves “Thomas and friends” and we ordered this super Yummy   Thomas cake to surprise him.

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Some winter skin care products, I recently bought. Want to pamper myself a bit with Sheet Mask when my skin is so weird and dry. What more…. I feel the difference after using  Apricot Makeup cleansing wipes, gently removes all my makeup along with dirt and oil without drying my skin in this cold weather.

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Got this boxes of baked goodies by a sweet friend and her cookies are so yum…if you are looking for perfect cookie recipes follow her blog Here.

I am giving away Five Passes to ONE lucky winner to Ontario Science Center, Check and Enter Here on my Facebook page…. Good luck!!

 

 

 

 

life style

The Best Of 2017

Its been a year since I am writing this blog, literally had some Roller coaster days and other hand I was enjoying my Merry Go Rounds.Ups and Downs are part of life and it’s so good to have a Blessed life in my Nest. Allhumdillah for everything I have, I Cant be thankful enough.

This year is going to be over in few days and it would be fun to take a look back at top Five posts of the year 2017 together.

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My year started with the biggest Renovation so far, My kitchen renovation was one of the projects I still feel proud to share. It took almost 2 months to do my budget  Kitchen Make Over….Reveal!and got so many compliments and it definitely a turning point in my blog life.

received_10154705590515791An organized home is always been my dream home.I always want to have things organized, it means to de-clutter and makes a system to put things back where they belong in a fraction of the time.I made the Toys Organizer and I just love to have it because I don’t need a hand if I want to move around.

20171017_135309My blog is actually my DIY diary and I rarely post other than my DIY/ projects.I DIY Hairpin Legs Bench from scratch and I love, how it turns out.

20171019_135657If you have a passion to have indoor plants like me than this still one of easiest DIY Hanging Plant Shelf I have ever made so far.

20171005_191343I don’t post recipes much but trust me I love cooking.This Fruity Alaska Is one of my favorite and most popular post of 2017.

Just in case I missed any of Your favorites, feel free to leave a note in comments.Any suggestion, critics nice words/ bad words (huh…?)…I would love to hear all.Thanks for being here!

This year is going to end in few days, I wish you all A very Happy New Year.Hope You have a wonderful  Year ahead…..I have so many exciting projects and works are in for 2018…so Keep Reading!!

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Check out the best of 2017 from some of Muslimah Fellow Bloggers.

Home Decor / DIY

DIY Wall Hanging

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Yarn love continues….Yes, I admit, I wanted to knit like my mom and I tried and got failed. After, I thought( or should I say wanted )to make/ DIY a wall hanging or tapestry with the yarn I already have!!

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It’s cheap and easy but a time taking project.Let’s start!!

I used,

A Dowel(From any craft / Home Hardware store)

Yarn of your choice colors( I used off-white, Orange, and Green)

Brass Rings.

Scissors

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Start with the base color I used off-white and cut it to the desired size. Now fold 4 equal lengths in half and drape it over the dowel.Pull the knot and make it tighten /secured.I made almost 26 equal lengths of base colored yarn.

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Step 2 is little tricky, I used two gold ring and hang it with a string of yarn in the middle.I used orange yarn and tied the same four strings of (shorter ) length and make a knot with the same I did with base color.

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Make a side knot to attach both rings and continue till You fill the space.I used almost same 10 knots with same (4×2)method.

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I Finished the project by using Green yarn, cut the excess length. You can even cut diagonal, not a hard and fast measuring rule.

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Viola!!!love how it turns out.I used the yarn according to my decor, you can use colors of your choice.It easy and affordable but definitely a statement piece in my living room.

Mid Week Fave!

Mid Week Fave!!

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This year December starts with lots of snow.We went to Ontario Science center last weekend, its nice indoor place to go with kids to learn and explore science and nature that’s definitely different and better than Indoor game zones.

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I bought this 18 – piece Rotating craft scissors caddy online.Every scissor has a different design and Bilal loves using them.If You are concerned about your child Fine Motor Skills(Grasp and Holding) than encourage him/her to cut paper.Holding and cutting make his grasp stronger.

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I asked my sister to send me embroidered lace and look what pretty thing I got along with some other stuff.I love the traditional Pakistani stuff and let’s see how I will use this…I am open to ideas, share if you have any!!

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Oh Yes.Few days left for winter vacations, kids are having winter fun and concerts. I am making Teacher’s Gifts with kids along with a Thank you note.If you want to know here are some Teacher’s gift ideas I shared Here.

So Far no plans for holidays..just some family get-togethers and stay home activities with kids.what you guys are doing??

 

 

 

 


 

Food & Recipes

Cold Pasta Salad

I love salads and its easy way to get your daily fruits and vegetable intake in a single bowl.I am sharing an easy and healthy salad recipe that’s perfect for quick lunches, potlucks, and picnics but I do love to have it while we go for a long drive/route.It is so rich and creamy and fills you up without being into junk food.

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Ingredients

Cream: 1 Pack

Mayonnaise: 1/2 cup

Yogurt: 1/2 cup

Sour Cream: 1/4 cup (optional )

Sugar: 3-4 Tbs

Boiled pasta:1 cup

Boiled Potato: 1 medium (cut into cubes )

Boiled Chick Pea:1/2 cup

Boiled Red beans:1/2 cup

Apple: 1 peeled and cut into cube

Walnut: 1/4 cup chopped

Salt and Pepper: To Taste

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Method:

Whip cream, yogurt, mayonnaise and sour cream together.

Now mix Boiled Potato, pasta, kidney beans, ChickPeas, and apples.Add walnut chunks(You may add pecans if you like).

Add sugar, salt, and pepper.Fold everything well, that’s it!..served cold.

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This the easiest thing I have ever made.You can add any fruit/vegetables but I love this recipe and so do my kids too …Try it and let me know …Enjoy!

life style

Deodorize Your Home!

Desi food is no doubt delicious but the strong smell of food even with kitchen exhaust on never welcome your guest to step in.Even  I don’t have party or guest invited  I always made some DIY or light up scented candles as soon as I finish cooking especially during winter when all windows need to be closed, zero ventilation because we have our heating on almost six months or over.

Let’s discuss, what I do!!

Method: 1

Home Made Stove Pot Pourri

Stovetop  Pot-pourri is my favorite DIY to deodorized my kitchen, Its absorb all the aroma of the strong smell of fish, spices/Turmeric etc.

I do make it often but need to change every week as fresh fruit gets rotten.It’s easy and budget-friendly, all you need following ingredients in Mason Jar.

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Lime and Lemon: 1 each

Cinnamon stick: 2

Bay Leaves: 1-2

Rosemary leaves: 3-4

Mint Leaves:1/2 Bunch

Star Anise ( Badiyan )

Cut all citrus fruits into thick slices.Take any mason/glass jar, Remove lid from the cap of the Mason jar with the ring on.


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Set All dry ingredient inside, Add fruit slices.Place this jar near the stove, you all set to go!!I love the aroma of citrus Rosemary near my stove, it helps eliminate the strong smell.

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If you don’t have Mason Jar, take any glass jar and drill small holes or even take the lid out.Change your potpourri every other week and enjoy Citrus  Rosemary while you cook.

Method: 2

Scented Candles:

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I love lightening up Candles, easy and affordable.If you remember I DIY one Here.

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It’s easy to make but if you don’t have ingredients, store-bought also a hit.I love to buy candles and I have them around my house.

 

 

 

life style

GET TO KNOW ME…!!

Its been a year since I am sharing stuff with you guys and I want to say a BIG thank you for all the support and encouragement I got after writing here on my blog.My blog followers are growing Allhumdillah and I am learning new things and explore myself every single day.

So it’s Anniversary time…I will be going to a recap later but the fact is I love to have you guys with me so its perfect time to let you guys know a bit about myself.People often ask me who am I, where do I live etc.

I thought to share some random fact or FAQs with you guys, as I am still too shy to post Pics /personal stuff.

Ten Random Facts About Me.

  1. I was born and raised in Karachi, Pakistan. I have completed my Master’s degree in Economics from the University of Karachi.
  2. I have 4 sisters and one elder brother and a set of loving and caring parents.
  3. I married a loving husband in 2004 and it was total arranged marriage.
  4. Currently living in Ontario, Canada and its been almost 13 years to be living as a permanent resident/Citizen in this awesome land.I hate Canadian Extreme cold winter but I do love this country A lot!
  5. I have three munchkins,1 girl who is going to be 12 and 2 boys(5&10).
  6. My kids are my strength and at the same time, they are my weakness.
  7. I am proud to be a junky, I love to shop cheap/ sale and believe To make it beautiful (customized).At my home, 60% stuff is either DIY or repainted.
  8. I learn every day no matter what but I learned a lot from my own mistakes.
  9. I love simple food and  I love to cook for people I love!!.
  10. I miss my country, my family, and friends, Pakistani street /Karachi University food, And yes Desi wedding vibes almost every other day.

So that’s all for me now If I skip something just leave a note…Thank You, guys…Love Ya!!

 

Home Decor / DIY · life style

From Drab to Fab!

Winter brings dry fruits, dry skin and sweaters.I don’t like Canadian winter much but  love sweaters,shawls and cardigans. I am OK to go for neutral and warm tones for myself but for kids, A Big NO!!!I always want bright and fun colors for them, but it’s really hard to find winter stuff if your kid is tween.

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This Turtle neck sweater was so boring and dull for a Tween girl..I thought to give it a quick lift and make it trendy.You can update your outdated boring outfit/ sweatshirt by adding some colorful pom-pom in just 10 minutes.so You can say its a “10 minute Challenge”…so Get ,set and GO!!

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If you remember I used these pom-pom here.I thought lets give this boring turtle neck sweater into fun and colorful make over.

 

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It’s so easy ,I would suggest you to stitch them.You may use glue but personally I don’t waste time that comes out after a use.Her sleeves were little bit bigger than her size so I folded and over lapped it.Now stitch a pompom with matching needle and thread.Make a pattern and that’s it!!

 

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Isn’t it so easy ,make a pattern of your choice .Use some funky or sober or even fluorescent pom-pom , make to love it more.

Mid Week Fave!

Mid-Week Fave!!

I want to write this post every week but don’t why I always skip weeks without any reason.Nothing much happening here and the weather is not cold as expected so Life is good Allhumdillah. Enjoying my morning tea and writing this post (since 2 days that’s why it’s not mid-week anymore)..sorry!

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Welcome to Nemo to our home!!..My little one wanted to have a pet and this is the only pet I can afford to take care of..lol…Bilal named it.. Nemo..its good to have and enjoy Nemo’s  less bothered company while my kids at school and I am home alone.

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I bought Nail art pen for Aleeza as a surprise, She has craze nowadays for nails.Sally Hansen “Neon Pink, kind of  Bubble Gum color.Its cute, just shake and easy to use.

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Can you leave this beauty at $2 (almost 90% off yes..I am not kidding)…if You haven’t stopped by my favorite store yet, Urban Planet having the great sale on nowadays.

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A good read at Reader’s Digest (an old edition) while I was at Dr appointment.A very close family friend, who is really close to my heart and like sister to me is battling with Cancer nowadays.Please Take a moment and pray for her complete and speedy recovery…Ameen!!

 

 

Food & Recipes

Fruity Alaska

I just love cooking and do enjoy creating new recipes.A couple of days ago I created a super easy recipe and everyone just loves it.Actually, I had some leftover and near to expired ingredients and I hate to waste anything especially food.Creating a new recipe is a risky fun but if Its a hit, I feel like Hit a Bingo!!

20171005_191343.jpg I sent pics and recipe to my younger sister, she named it “Fruity Alaska”…interesting name right? It’s very healthy and you can serve at any occasion.Birthday or potluck or any casual dinner even Its a hit at breakfast.Let’s Start!!

Ingredients:

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Cinnamon Bun Dough: 1 pkt

Eggs: 2-3r

Cream Cheese: 1 Pkt (8 oz)

Fresh Cream: 1 cup/can (Optional otherwise use Milk)

Condense milk / Sugar: according to Taste

Peaches: 3-4

Blue Berry: 1 hand full

Walnut: 1/2 cup

Method:

I used my hand blender and Blend Cream cheese and cream/milk at medium speed.Add eggs and condensed milk, I  used almost more than a can, blend everything on high speed. 20171005_180712.jpg

In a baking dish put pieces of cinnamon bun dough (You can Use any fruit bread instead), peach slices and blueberries. Carefully add the Cream cheese and egg mixture and settle it down for 10 mins.Add walnuts chunks.

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Bake at 375°F for 30-40 mins, check in between with toothpick as soon it comes clean take it out.Do not over bake it.

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I poured glaze that comes along with cinnamon bun dough.I served hot with ice cream and chocolate topping.  It’s very healthy and perfect for breakfast. Your kid will love it, I bet you…Enjoy!

 

Home Decor / DIY

Laundry Folder (DIY)

I always used to hate laundry when I  was back home.Here, we have automatic machines fortunately but still…I am lazy….. folding and ironing both are time taking tasks.A family with three active kids, My laundry basket is always full even a minute after I finished my last load.

I was looking for the laundry folder but couldn’t find in store anywhere affordable.I checked online and it’s almost $20 plus shipping. After watching some tutorials online, I made one…A simple and cheap…Let’s start!

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I got sink Mats from the dollar store and make one under 10 (Less).I bought 6 sink mats and duct tape.The size of the mat is approximately 9 inches x 12 inches.

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Place sink mats in order to 2×3, I attached the duct tape in order like the picture below.Make sure you tape individually so the mat can be foldable, follow the number and directions.

23905645_10155616280630791_4817123211244701827_nIt’s really easy to make, just use a strong tape and that’s it, your very own laundry folder is ready.

 

Place shirt in the middle of the mat, then fold right side first. Now flip the left side, and finally the 5th mat to complete the fold.Its so easy even your kids can do it.My 5-year-old Bilal love to help.

You can make with card boxes, you need 6 same sized cardboards.Cut the desired equal size and that’s it.

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See how easy to fold shirts in seconds, It took almost less than half time I normally spent without it.Make one and ask your kids to fold their own.20171121_133910.jpgI am sure you will love and have a huge relief after.Make one and Enjoy your most hated chores (Like me).

Home Decor / DIY

Tie & Dyed Tangerine Cushion

I admit It was one of my wish to have a “Tie and Dyed” custom piece in my home.I had so many Tie and Dyed dupattas even Saree in my Jehaz and I just love to have them.It was done by professional  Rungraz back home (sadly we don’t have such services here).I couldn’t wear plain Dupatay/ scarf, and no clue why I am like that!

I am so excited! I’ve made my very own Tie and Dyed cushion, and yes it is a great success!! Are you ready!!

20171118_130336.jpgI used powdered Dye in “Tangerine Orange”, it’s a small pack of 50 gm.Liquid dye is easy to use but it’s expensive so I thought let’s try this small packet first if it gets fail I will stop dreaming about it…make sense right!

let’s start!

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Fabric Dye (Liquid /powdered)

Fabric( cotton/canvas )

Stainless steel Bowl/Bucket

Rubber Bands

Gloves

Salt

Prepare your fabric first, I was making two 12×20 pillows so I cut the fabric accordingly.Fold the fabric and start tying it with a rubber band.Tie and until the end of the fabric.

20171116_112504.jpgwear your gloves and cover the surface.Boil water now pour the hottest water to any stainless(spare) steel bowl Since the dye is not food grade so you won’t be able to use it for food after. Mix hand full of salt, I would say about 3-4 Tbs and Dye powder to water mix well.

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Now Dip the tied fabric into the Dye and dip it with the help of a tong.Leave fabric about 40 mins, rotate fabric in meantime.

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Rinse fabric until the water clears out, now add salt to cold water and dip this fabric for 20 mins to fix the dye.Now untie the fabric and remove the rubber band.

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Let it air dry it, It was so cold outside that’s why I hang fabric in my laundry room overnight.I ironed it and made cushions similar to this one.Its simple and required basic sewing skills.

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This Tie and Dyed cushions are perfect for  Accent chairs I bought recently from Target USA for my living room.

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Isn’t look good? It’s so easy and so much fun DIY. Now I am more confident to try some new things/Projects… Stay tuned!!