Monday, July 28, 2008

Disturbing things...

No, not the picture. Last night was a delightful night as I curled up in bed, ready to watch the last few minutes of 'Chelsea Lately' and 'Good Eats' on different channels respectively. And then, all the delightfulness died. I stumbled upon show on MSNBC called 'The Longest Night: Secrets of the Austrian Cellar'. I wasn't able to sleep through the night due to the awful nature of the story. Real story that is. A father kept his daughter captive for 24 years in a cellar built in his own house and the rest is so gory... Read it here
What weird things happen in this world. Today was spent pretty much applying to places and stuff. I spoke to a good old friend, Kawsar, for a bit and it was great catching up. I went out for a walk and came back home within half an hour to avoid any sudden downpours. I whipped up a quick stir fry with zucchini, green beans, spinach, broccoli and ground beef. I know thats a weird combination but you know how everything tastes better with ground beef. Plus, I don't eat red meat that often but I was really craving it. I mean its better than having a burger right? Had more of the cheesecake bars and as a tribute, I even took a picture of it. Yay for food.

Sunday, July 27, 2008


Yeah, I am watching the digitally-enhanced Wizard of Oz on TNT. Such a cute movie. Especially the people of Munchkinland. I also love all the songs in the movie viz. 'follow the yellow brick road' I went to Wegmans today...again. I had to buy some whole wheat flour and while I was there I had to get something for my notorious sweet tooth and who can resist Wegman's desserts. I bought four pieces of walnut cheesecake bars. They are so good. They are like a cheesecake baked with walnuts and they also have a chewy caramely crust on the bottom with more walnuts. It's really good. I also bought some snacking items, as you can see from the picture, roasted green peas and rice crackers. The rice crackers I tasted on my way back home. I got the seaweed flavor. For a person who enjoys most things 'whole' and 'full cream' and so forth, things with no fat taste a bit boring and yucky to me. I am so sleepy right now. I stayed up so so late last night watching X-Files. *yawn* maybe I'll go lay down for a bit. Mmm I already finished two of the four cheescake bars.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

The revised post

So guess what I did just now, I wrote a mighty long post about being muslim and all the responsibilities it bears and erased most of it. Here's a bit: Heard about the blast in Ahmedabad? Devastating is an understatement whenever such things happen. The Indian Mujahedeen claimed responsibility according to BBC News. Obviously, everyone thinks of Mujahedeen and thinks Muslim. Well, they really aren't. They are fanatics, impostors in the name of God and just straight out meanies. They have soiled the reputation of Muslims to such an extent around the world that sometimes, I can't help but pity myself.
I never was one of those outspoken, overly-opinionated and pigheaded type of people. Although I appear to be a gal who just likes to dabble in the latest collection of makeup, showbiz news, and facebooking, I am very much aware about what is going on around the world. I just choose not to talk much about it and pretend that everything is okay. I think there are enough political bloggers out there so I guess I will stick to keeping this blog about the more easier things in life. Only one thing, not all terrorists are muslim, and most importantly, not all muslims are terrorists.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Summertime me

I decided to put on some makeup, wear a nice top and go outside. I took the mall/market shuttle and went to the mall (where I found uber-cute tees at JCPenney's for like $2.98-- I really need them when I go running or walking.) After the mall I walked over to Wegmans and spent an hour and a half looking for Witch hazel there. I don't have a toner and wanted to get one and have read a lot about using witch hazel as a toner (on oily to combination skin). I looked in the organic section, cosmetics section and every other possible section to no avail. Anyways, instead I bought this toner from Avalon Organics called Vitamin C balancing toner. It was $7.99 and from the ingredients it sounds pretty good. Will give it a try and see what it does to my as-of-now blemishy skin. I came home and ate too much food. They're showing 'Save the Last Dance' on tbs. What a surprise right? (not) I am watching it anyways although I've seen it many times. I am feeling a little under the weather...was supposed to go to Vinny's party tonight. I am so sorry Vinny, I just don't fare very well when the weather changes so much. Okay, calling it an early night~

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Miss Gross

Yup thats me, at 1:50am, sitting with a gross tub of Perry's Maple Walnut Ice-cream. Well, its not gross, the timing I am eating at is gross and what effects it will have on me is grosser. Anyway, got this at Budweys for $1.99-- this huge, obnoxious thing for $1.99. Come on now thats a steal. I went for a 2 hour walk today, power walk and then came home and did some weights and topped it all with this. Oh well, I am one of those people who actually gives into cravings and actually lives a little. I was just sending some emails to Dad about some information he wanted. Also, watching some Bizarre Foods on the side, yeah he is in Ecuador eating ants. I am always in a fix about who I like more, Anthony Bourdain or Andrew Zimmern. They both have very different styles. I love the way Zimmern describes food using metaphors (eg: He once ate some durian and went like 'it tastes like stinky shoes with rotten onions in it' and this other time he was like 'you could deep-fry a tire and put some ranch on it and it'd taste good', emphasizing the combo of deep-fried food with ranch) and Bourdain is really good at describing circumstances in a story-telling sort of way. Okay, I am off to the bed for some magazine know lately, I have been waking up at like 5am (after going to sleep at 3am) for drawing...I am gross and weird. Okay, later gator.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Jobs Shmobs

Argh, getting so impatient with job applications. My wrist hurts from all the typing, clicking, scrolling, etc. I have close to 20 versions of cover letters for all kinds of position. Oh well, there has been a few phone calls. Let's just hope something good falls through soon. What else? Nothing really...just annoyed with the muggy, sticky, humid weather. Can fall come already?
Congratulations to my dear friend on joining the NYPD. Atta boy! So proud of you.
Alright, calling it a night, no actually going to curl up on bed and read the dozen Fitness, People, Cosmogirl, etc. magazines that the roomie has lent me. Sweet!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Spinach-Ricotta Bake

Notice a trend? I have been in the kitchen a lot lately. My newest creation, a tantalizing spinach ricotta bake. I couldn't think of any other name. I actually went grocery shopping yesterday with the intention of purchasing everything needed for a white veggie lasagna. Today, I somehow was feeling a bit lazy and instead I just whipped up a casserole kind of dish.

1 small onion
3 cloves garlic
1 zucchini
3 large mushrooms
1 (10 oz) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed
1 cup cooked, chopped chicken breast
1 cup ricotta cheese
2 eggs
1 /2 cup whole milk
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 tsp italian herb mix
salt/pepper to taste
2 tbsp olive oil

I sauteed finely chopped onion and garlic in some olive oil. Next, I chopped the zucchini and mushrooms and put those in. Seasoned with some salt and pepper and then browned that for sometime. Next, I added the thawed spinach. Lastly I added the cooked pieces of chicken breast. I preheated the oven to 350F and greased a square pyrex dish. I then took another bowl and put in the bowl the ricotta cheese, eggs, milk, parmesan cheese, mozzarella cheese and salt and pepper. I then transferred the semi-cooled spinach mixture into the bowl and mixed everything thoroughly. I then poured this mixture onto the pyrex dish and then on top sprinkled some mozzarella cheese and grated parmesan cheese generously. 40 minutes later, the top was golden brown and all the cheeses were oozing and bubbling from the sides. I let it cool and then took a bite. I like.

I must admit though that with a silky bechamel sauce and lasagna sheets in between, it would probably taste more sinful.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Ricotta Raspberry Dip

Once again I went on a culinary my kitchen. You know how they always have the 2 for $5 raspberry pints. I always get those and I always, always successfully finish the first box within first 10 minutes of purchase. Theres only like 10 raspberries in there anyways. So the other box I devour the next day but usually they get a little soft and mushy just within the next day. So today, I came up with this:

1 pint raspberries
1 cup ricotta cheese
4 tbsp honey

I chopped the raspberrys really well (mulled them) and then I put them in a bowl and then dumped in a cup of ricotta cheese and added generous dollops of honey (how much ever sweet you want it) and mixed everything really well. I let it sit in the refrigerator for about 2 hours. I tasted some and it was delish. Although I ate it just by itself as a dessert, I think this would taste really nice as a spread on a plain bagel or inside a crepe. My food photography skills suck royally, but some illustration is better than none :)

Funny forum post

So I was on this random messageboard on and I stumbled upon this person's (their name on the forum was eZero G) posting, below his or her posting was their sign off message which was this:

If acne was a person, I would grab both of his ear, pull each one as hard as I can until he cries in pain as brittle cartilages pop like pocorn. Then, I would force him to chew the torn flesh as I laugh in disgust and revenge. After, I would slice narrow holes on his stomach, chop all his fingers and force them inside the stomach holes, and with a hammer, I would smack the tip of his toes, and slice long, narrow, and deep stripes starting from his thigh to his toenails. Then just as he thinks everything is over, I would pour a bottle of BP to each of his eyes, stuff worthless Proactiv products to his mouth, and sprinkle Epsom salts, and vinegar to all open wounds. Finally, to humor myself, I would stab his face with a fork ten times to form ice-pick scars, then pour hot, then cold water over him, and over dry his face with a hair dryer to irritate his skin. And to conclude my revenge, I would hammer his balls, then leave him in the sun without sunscreen or moisturizer.

~Funny funny thing.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008


Joy! I made home-made sort of granola bars and they remind of some kind of a nut brittle hence the name. I kind of altered Alton Brown's recipe of homemade granola bar and made my own using the ingredients that I had on hand, here they are:

2 cups instant oats (his recipe called for old-fashioned rolled oats but didn't have any)
1 cup slivered almonds
1 cup dessicated coconut
1/2 cup honey
1/4 cup brown sugar
1-ounce unsalted butter, plus extra for pan
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup dried currants (sun maid)

First I greased a pan and toasted the oats, coconut and almonds for like 5 minutes at 300F. It started to burn pretty quick so you gotto be careful and remove it quickly and then add the dried fruit to it. Meanwhile, I prepared the syrup with the sugar, honey, butter, vanilla extract and salt. This syrup is so annoying, it doesn't move much (like toffee) and sets real quickly and ooh be careful not to get any on your fingers, very very hot and melting skin-sticky. So I mixed everything together, its kind of hard because the syrup starting settling in goops here and there. A spatula works best I think. I put it in the oven again for 15 mins. I removed the pan and cooled it thoroughly. As I tried to cut it, irregular shaped brittle like pieces flew here and there. I tried some and they are good and you get that little hint of butter and vanilla and that coconut just does it...mmmm. Definitely better than having something from the store that has tons of corn syrup and other unnatural stuff. Try it!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Happy Birthday Atanu!

Its my dear, dear, awesome, awesome friend Atanu's birthday. The chap who is always doing so much for others. Dude, I feel miserable that I can't be there in New York to take you for some great frozzen hot chocolate. I am sure the mommy's cooking up a storm for the birthday boy. I am making a couple of wishes for your birthday and just in general for your life:
~Hope you achieve academically and professionally what you deserve.
~Hope you and your family are always in good health.
~Hope you find a wonderful girl/life-partner who has as beautiful a heart as her face.
~Hope you start becoming surrealistically real instead of realistically surreal.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

My wishlist skincare products

These are items I have either used as samples, or borrowed from my mommy (she is a Lancome junkie). They are all divine, gets the job done and really cha-ching for someone with my budget (until I get a job).

1- Lancome Galateis Clarte $30 (Milky Cleanser)
2- Lancome Exfoliance Clarte $24 (Exfoliating Gel)
3- Lancome Tonique Clarte $21. (Hyrdating Toner)
4- Clinique Turnaround Concentrate Skin Renewer $36.50 for 1ml (Leave-on serum but called exfoliator)
5- LUSH Goregous Cream $85.45 for 1.5oz, go figure. (Moisturizer with all kinds of cold-pressed oils)
6- LUSH Oceans Salt $18.55 for 4.2 oz. (Exfoliator with coarse sea salt, avocado, coconut, etc.)
7-LUSH Mask of Magnanimity $20.45 for 11.1oz (Mask, Deep cleans breakout-prone skin with a luscious vanilla-mint scent)

My favorite moisturizers. lotions, oils, etc.

1- Oil of Olay Complete SPF 15 for Normal Skin ($5 something): Not too oily, not too dry, does the job in places that doesn't get much harsh sun throughout the year.
2- Aveeno Continuous Protection Sunblock Lotion sPF 45 ($9.99): Just got this not too long ago, a little thick since its a hardcore sunblock but the fragrance is wonderful. I slather it on before running outside...the sun here is very strong this time of year.
3- Oil of Olay Natural White Night Cream ($4 something): Got this in Oman. It is more of a brightening cream than whitening. Been using it for about 7 months now. Not too bad.
4- Desert Essence Tea Tree Oil ($20 but I got it cheaper at some online store) Pimples be gone. Amazing life-saver.
5- Aura Cacia Grapeseed Oil ($4): Use it for undereye and places that feel like they need extra moisturizing.
6- Desert Essence Jojoba Oil ($10 but cheaper online): Very good for dry skin and dry hair. Gives skin a dewy, glowy, after-spa feel. Multi-purpose liquid gold.

My favorite cleansers

1. LUSH Coalface soap $10.95 for 3.5oz (I however bought it at the store and asked the nice lady to cut a real tiny pieace for me, something like 0.1lb and it came up to $6.35 for it). Its only been about a month since I have been using this soap. It smells like licorice as it contains that and charcoal and stuff. I like it so far as it gets my oily/combination skin squeaky clean and also removes remnant make-up (after using a wipe-off cleanser). Its important to follow up with moisturizer though.
2. Olay Deep Cleansing Face Wash for Combination skin with Witch Hazel ($2.94 at Wal Mart). I started using following in the footsteps of Gowri, who gorgeous sand like shimmery skin. I like this one too. Its velvetty in texture and a little goes a long way.
3. Biore's Pore Unclogging Scrub ($5.94 at Wal Mart). I like this one. The granules in this are big enough to scrub my blackheady skin but small enough not to hurt my skin. It leaves this minty fresh feeling after you've used this. Skin feels cool and refreshed. Love it.
4. Freemans Facial Clay Mask with Avocado and Oatmeal ($3.27 at Wal Mart). Beware, using this on your face may yield you clear, large-pores free skin, however it does hurt your eyes a lot. I don't know if it is just me, but this thing makes me cry. I don't know if it is the fragrance or the what. Maybe won't repurchase. First one and last one.
5. Johnson's 3 in 1 Facial Cleanser (Not available in the US but around $4 in Oman). I usually remove all my make-up with a cotton pad using this cleanser. It gets every thing off, kohl, mascara, blush, etc. After this I wash my face with a rinse-off cleanser. This was suggested to me by a Lancome skin-expert. She said to remove all make up with a cotton pad soaked in any cleanser (or even baby oil) and then to wash it off. Works for me. This formulation is very light, non-oily and does the job.
6. Ponds Deep Cleansing Cucumber Cleanser ($4 something in Wal Mart). I bought this is yet another wipe-off cleanser. This one is also very effective in removing makeup, however due to the high-mineral oil content, I follow up with a towel soaked in lukewarm water to get all the residue off. After which I use my rinse-off cleanser.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Miss chatterbox is here

There is no one to talk to. No one. No one. No one.

I have been a loner kind of a person for a good while now. While sometimes it may seem like the way of life, sometimes it just aches from inside out. And no I don't want to join any cult, clan, creed, faction, etc. to help support groups, counselors, therapists either. I would like to think I am not a depressed person because I really am not. I am alive, have a beautiful futon mattress to sleep on, great quality food to munch on and a slightly over-healthy body to dwell on. Not complaining about none of those (yeah I could totally picture some of my blog's frequent readers giving this peculiar stare thinking how I usually explain all clauses and conditions before I write something negative). Anyways, not having anyone to talk to-- It can be quite a bit sometimes. So let me give you a rundown of my daily schedule just so you know how my life goes...
~I wake up in the morning, make myself a nice tortilla filled with shredded cheese and also make some egg whites (yeah I know I like my breakfast big, thank you)
~Then I check my email, apply for jobs here and there. By now its time for some green tea, chug that and then slap on some SPF45 and go outside for a walk or go to the gym if I am feeling extra happy.
~Then come back home, by now I have slipped into 5pm/6pm slumberous mode, however, I hold it, everyday. I browse the internet yet again to overcome the soporific mode.
~Oh, in between I have duly made time for a soyjoy bar, some juice or gatorade and maybe some chips too (bad).
~Time to prep me some dindin...oh could be anything from rice and a modest curry to some salmon cooked with everything but the kitchen sink. Note, I enjoy spending copious amounts of time in the kitchen. Gives me mental clarity--especially when I use the ink-serator to grind gunk down the sink.
~I forgot to mention that the TV has been on all this while ever since I woke up, cept when I am not home (not a 100% green gal but I try). I am watching Food Network, E!, TBS, TNT, etc. all the time even the movies they repeat like 5 million times a week. I catch up on news online.
~Time to get some more of what I had for dinner followed by my fave green tea ice-cream. Always have two tubs in the fridge, sort of an insurance policy.
~Soon its 2am and I have been online browsing the umpteenth IT company, having just sent them my resume using their freakishly annoying automated system. Time for them chips.

So there you go...that's pretty much my day. I forgot to mention that I do talk to a few people here and there over the phone but have to do them much conservatively to save daytime minutes. I would say I have about 2-3 close friends with whom conversations exceed more than 10 minutes sometimes. They are great listeners and everything. Love them for being in my life.
So ya'll wondering what I'm exactly complaining about right? Don't have to wake up before dawn to some white-collared (or blue-colored) job in corporate america, Don't have to feed infants, Don't have infants, Don't have husband (Don't want husband).....yet so much to complain about?
Truly a wonder isn't it? Going back to the whole not being able to talk to someone. Maybe its talking about certain things. Things that live in me and have lived in me. New things that are growing in me. All these things that I sleep with every night in my mind and all these things that creep up in my dreams in the weirdest of ways. All these things are not told and I just hope the great Almighty gives me the strength to survive with so many untold things. Nuff blab for today, or tonight rather, its 2:06am.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Rantings and nice things...

Well, life is sometimes full of rantings. Can't help it. I finally doctored my resume a bit more and am getting more views on Monster and a few letters from some places. I am still ranting because this whole process is so hard. Waiting, waiting and waiting. Emailing resumes to ginormous corporations using their online employment system seems so, so useless. Do they even look? Anyhoo, this past Sunday, the nicest thing happened. Brita auntie and family were en route from Washington to Canada. They decided to stop by Buffalo and I actually got to meet up with them! It was an awesome feeling seeing them after a decade! I couldn't believe it and still can't believe it that Sadaf, the little kid who I used to play 'kitchen kitchen' with is now in college. Time doesn't wait for anyone does it. What I would do to go back to those days when I was a little kid. We had dinner at Fridays and chit chatted about the past, present and future. It was a fun night.
I have been drawing a lot lately using crayola markers. Yeah, I know it sounds very 5 year old but hey it has been a little stress relieving. What else? This summer heat in Buffalo is madness. The AC in our apartment does not work. I called the maintenance people so many times but to no avail. I have become this grizzly bear...haven't done eyebrows in about 2 months is a rat sack, skin is a Anyways, you get the gist.