Tuesday, 21 April 2015

Family - The Greatest Gift

Online real estate platform housing.com has been creating quite a buzz recently, thanks to its heart-warming Look Up series of advertisement campaigns. The campaigns are heart-warming for they talk about family and togetherness, and underline the importance of inclusiveness and optimism. Most importantly, these campaigns are focussing on the significant role a positive attitude can play in making this world a better place to live. And it is interesting to see that these campaigns are inspiring people to share their Look Up stories – stories of grit and determination, tales of love and laughter, and accounts of family bonding. Housing.com’s most recent Look Up theme is togetherness, and the stories of togetherness that people are sharing are not just tugging at my heartstrings, but are also inspiring me to share my story of togetherness.

I celebrated my birthday in the second week of this month, and for the first time in last so many years, everyone in the family was together to celebrate my special day. Not that birthday celebrations excite me at this age, but the fact that my husband and all my children were with me after so long, filled my heart with immense happiness and gratitude. More often than not I am bogged down by some sundry pain or the other. Joint pains, backache, exhaustion - some ailment or the other keeps demoralising me, as a result of which I am hugely dependent on medicines. But the birthday week was different; I could feel spring in my steps and went about the household chores as if my body had never known any pain. Such was the effect of the pleasant vibes at home.

The easy banter at the dining table, with everyone sharing jokes and random experiences, the silly family jokes - everything was music to my ears that had become extremely fed up of the monotonous silence that reigned inside the house when the kids were away. It was as if their presence was now breathing life back into the boring four walls. Everything seemed aglow with love and warmth, and rings of laughter decked up every corner of the house. Later in the evening, extended family members' surprise visit to wish me turned out to be the icing on my marvellous birthday cake. Everyone came bearing good wishes, gifts and flowers and the birthday revelry went on till late in the night.

Presence of my family, all my loved ones, together with me on my special day, what else could I have asked for from God. I hope and pray that he keeps making all our birthdays similarly beautiful and fulfilling. May there always be love and laughter in our lives. May the presence of our loved ones keep filling our homes with happiness, for it's our loved ones, our families that fill our lives with love and warmth and give us the strength and motivation to face life's challenges head-on.

Photo courtesy: All Things Family

Sunday, 12 April 2015

Shri Mangeshi Temple, Goa

Hello dear readers, I am back with some more Goa photos. And featured here today is yet another iconic temple - the very popular Shri Mangeshi temple, located in Mangeshi village in, Ponda, Goa. This temple is dedicated to Lord Mangesh, an incarnation of Lord Shiva and is one of the most visited temples in Goa.

The Shri Mangeshi Temple complex also has shrines dedicated to Goddess Parvati. During big Hindu festivals like Dusshera and Diwali, the temple is all decked up and special pujas are conducted. So the next time you are in Goa, make sure you visit this beautiful temple and seek the blessings of Shri Mangesh.

Saturday, 11 April 2015

Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception Church

Today I am back with photos of yet another iconic monument - Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception Church, located in Goa's capital Panaji. The bright white colour of this church dazzles in the sunlight, making it a sight to behold. 

This church was built by the Portuguese in 1541, as a chapel for the Portuguese sailors. Later as the population of the area grew, in 1609 the chapel was replaced by this larger church. Every year of the 8th of March, Festival of Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception is celebrated here, during which the church is decked up in colourful lights.

The Dancing Stars!

Dear friends and readers, I am back with some photos from the Kila Raipur games, also known as the Rural Olympics. During the games, every nook and corner of the stadium that hosts the games was full of sights to capture. From sportsmen to incredibly talented village simpletons, everyone was out there displaying their special skills on the ground.

And amidst this all were these delightfully dressed animals, entertaining the crowds with their dancing skills. It was fun to stand there in the crowd and watch both the horse and the camel do their masters bidding, not missing even a single drum beat. 

Friday, 10 April 2015

Butter Sculpture at Gyuto Monastery

Friends and readers, here are a couple of photos of the butter sculptures I talked about in my last post - Prayers and Peace. Butter sculpture making is an ancient Tibetan Buddhist tradition and are made as an offering to Lord Buddha. Tibetan monks use yak butter and other pigments to create intricate butter sculptures depicting stories about Lord Buddha. Now-a-days sculptures based on important world issues are also made and displayed at Buddhist monasteries.

These sculptures are made by hand, and to prevent the butter from melting, the monks keep dipping their hands in cold water while modelling the butter. Isn't it incredible how religious devotion inspires and motivates us to ignore physical discomfiture for the love of God.

Thursday, 9 April 2015

Prayers and Peace

These photos are from the Gyuto Monastery in Sidhbari, Himachal Pradesh. Sidhbari is around 6 kms from Dharamshala and this monastery serves as the residence of Karmapa Ogyen Trinley Dorje. The Karmapa is the official title given to the head of the Karma Kagyu school, which is one of the four main schools of Tibetan Buddhism.

This beautiful monastery is situated right at the foothills of the mighty Dhauladhar range, and a place where peace prevails. Inside the sanctum sanctorum, there are religious relics and beautiful display of traditional Buddhist butter sculptures. In my next post, I will share some photos of the display in clicked inside. Hope you liked this post.

Wednesday, 8 April 2015

Batu Caves Temple, Kuala Lumpur

Dear friends and family, shared below are the images from the iconic Batu Caves Temple on the outskirts of the city of Kuala Lumpur, in Malaysia. The name Batu comes from the Batu river that flows past the hill on which the temple is built. The Batu Caves temple is dedicated to Lord Murugan (Lord Kartikeya) whose huge statue stands tall at the foot of the hill.

 With a height of 42.7m, this statue is said to be the world's tallest statue of Lord Murugan, There is a steep flight of steps leading to the sanctum sanctorum deep inside the caves. This cave temple is a must-see if you are visiting Kuala Lumpur. So the next time you are planning a trip to Malaysia, make sure you include this striking temple in your itinerary.

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Colours of Punjab

Hello friends, I am back here with a new photo. Came across this father-son duo at the Kila Raipur Games (the Rural Olympics) held at Kila Raipur in the month of January. This photo was taken inside the Grewal Sports Stadium and everything about this pair had a regal air.

Their dress and the accompanying paraphernalia and their body language, everything exuded strength and also had a hint of arrogance, but surprisingly when they posed for the camera, their shy smiles turned out to be the real winner.

Monday, 6 April 2015

Ruining Away

This is the palace I mentioned about in my last post - Colours and Carvings. Constructed by Raja Seetaram, it is located in a tiny village called Kotwan, around 100 kms from Delhi on the Delhi Agra highway. The palace is now in a dilapidated condition, but from the ruins one can make out that it must have been a lavish property in its heydays.

Some standing parts of this palace still look glorious and the intricate carvings on the pillars look captivating, but it was disappointing to see that the villagers had a very indifferent approach towards this heritage property right in the centre of their village.

Sunday, 5 April 2015

Colours and Carvings

Hello friends, today I am sharing a photo of a beautiful little house I came across in Kotwan village, near Agra. It is a small village on the Delhi-Agra highway and has ruins of a small palace built by Raja Seetaram. Will soon share a few photos of the palace ruins too.

I liked this house for its bright colours and the lovely carved door. Also despite the village being a bit of a mess, this house stood out for its neatly swept verandah. 
What do you think of this house?

Saturday, 4 April 2015

Hello World!

My name is Shashi and I am a home-maker. I am not much of a writer but sometimes I feel like sharing my life’s big and small happenings with the world. My daughter has been blogging for a long time now and many a times she has motivated me to write. So today I am finally here.

I like travelling and my favourite hobbies are cooking and gardening. On this blog I intend to share my favourite recipes and since I am vegetarian, the recipes are all going to be of vegetarian dishes. Also I have a tiny verandah dotted with my favourite plants; I will keep sharing photos of those too. Hope I get your love and appreciation to stick around here.

That’s all for now, hope to have a happy time here. Have a blessed day ahead.