Full Circle

They say it is almost impossible to escape your past, no matter where you go, you’ll always return to where it all began. This full circle was realized a month ago when I went back to Los Angeles for spring break after eight long years. Going back to LA, made me realize how much of a Cali girl I really am! Don’t get me wrong New York and Mumbai have their own ubiquitous charm, but their binding characteristic is in their sheer clutter and bustle of city life; which can be unnerving for a person like myself! LA was the prefect antidote to escape that chaos and it only got better once I realized I was on vacation with zero responsibilities, great sunshine and a bathing suit I was dying to get into!

With that being said, I would like to add a small caveat to this discussion. I realized in my time in LA and subsequently my amazing road trip to Vegas, that the enjoyment I was feeling was less a result of my setting but rather thinking relatively to the responsibilities and life I had temporarily left behind in NY. This also made me realize how true the statement “Grass is always greener on the other side” is. When I was in Mumbai, all I wanted to do was go back to America and study in NY. But after the new car smell wore off in the Big Apple, I couldn’t wait to escape and go to LA.

So I guess what I am trying to say is, live in the moment and be grateful for your current situation. It could always be worse, things are not as they seem and what you are longing for (happiness perhaps) is right there in your backyard!

NOW enjoy my photos from Vegas!!

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-XOXO Kreena

 

Tryst with spontaneity

We tend to label some people as spontaneous, others as planners, sometimes both, and I am fine to such classifications as long as the comparison is not a hard line through the middle. In my estimation, spontaneity is partly characteristic, but is also situational. I tend to overthink and plan on a daily basis. That is my character. But that night, as I sat in my room reminiscing of the 20-hour journey from New York to Mumbai, and how it came about in a matter of a days, it was something I could not comprehend. This ladies and gentlemen is my tryst with spontaneity.

To take it back, I have to explain how this came about. It was my parents 25th anniversary celebration earlier this month. All my cousins, aunts and uncles (all millions of them) were going to show up to this big event. For obvious reasons, I could not attend the event because I was over 3000 miles away, just started my spring semester and the wheels were already in motion to start the year with a bang. My future lack of presence at the event was obviously scrutinized and to a certain degree there was a somber sense, that this party would not be right without me attending. My mom would say things “This is the last function in our family until your wedding” or “We won’t be able to enjoy the party without you.”

In my mind, it did not make sense for me to spend all that money, time and energy just to attend an event and leave the next day. So when my dad gave me a call asking if I could afford to miss a few days of college I said yes, not realizing his intentions. Ten minutes later, I get another call from him, this time letting me know that he has found a last minute ticket to India and that I should take the next flight out.

Now I must admit, that conversation didn’t go as well as my dad planned. I vehemently opposed coming to India, just for a few days and I wasn’t about to drop everything on a phone call.

My decision was clearly a reflection of my character, but as the day progressed, and I sat in my dorm room showing my friends a video montage of my parents’ anniversary, my family had put together, I broke down in tears. It occurred to me that, everything I had previously thought about i.e. the money, time, energy, missing a few days of college were inconsequential to the larger picture which is family, togetherness and being there in that moment!

By midnight I booked my plane ticket to India and except for my dad, nobody in the family knew I was coming. Picture me entering the house with a cake in one hand trying to surprise my mom and my brother. The whole experience, in that one moment where my mom and I were balling our eyes out, and my brother (a man of many words) frozen to see didi in the living room. After the shock wore off, he gave me a big hug and said; “Didi, after you left for New York, I realized, you are all I need in my life.” I was absolutely floored. My emotions were through the roof, and I understood how special this was for us all.

The party was a great success and I am glad I had the opportunity to attend this major event in my parents lives. This spontaneous trip to India was the best thing I had done in a very long time. It also didn’t hurt that I was pampered, and taken care of; something I used to take for granted until I started living on my own.

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So to all my readers, I urge you to try breaking out of character from time to time.  I understand that we are preoccupied in our own world, and our daily routine can become monotonous. But from time-to-time, try surprising yourself, you’ll be glad you did.

Until next time,
Kreena Desai.

What I Wore

This Diwali break I had gone on a pilgrimage in the north of India with 100 other people from my family (that is only my close family :P). As with my family and probably yours, there’s always some that are more judgmental of what you wear, how you talk, etc. So you have to tread carefully to not offend any sentiments. For that reason I had to dress a little more “appropriately” on all the days I was with them. This is what I wore:


I know the picture quality isn’t that great and pictures are not exactly how I wanted them to be, but this was the best I could do with so many gazing looks! As you can tell I only carried two pairs of footwear since I could carry limited items with me and I couldn’t wear any make up due to weather conditions. But you get the picture.
Tell me how you spent your Diwali this year and send me pictures of what you wore this Diwali break, I would love to feature you on my blog.

-XOXO Kreena

THE NETWORK

What is it?

The Network is an exhibition focused on start ups created by a start up. Most of the brands showcased here are unique and different from one another as the talent and creativity is fresh. The stuff that will be seen at the Network is such that you would have never seen in any street or store

Where is it?

Venue: Sunderbhai Hall, Marine Lines, Mumbai
Date: 1st-2nd December, 2012.
Timing: 11am to 8pm

What can we see there?

Other than the usual stalls with bags, accessories, jewelry, shoes, & clothes created and put together by creative young minds – The Network also features:

  • Workshops. (Entry to workshop is free, however prior registration is needed, email to thenetworkreach@gmail.com)
  • Photobooth sessions.  Shopping with girlfriends, acting silly and getting photo proof!!
  • Hand made handicrafts
  • FOOD FOOD FOOD! – cupcake & cake booths
  • DIY workshop – 1st December 5pm
  • 7 minute fast hair styles and make up tricks – 2nd December 5pm
  • Tarot Card readers & Cyrstal Ball gazers

RSVP for the event at THE NETWORK and make sure you are there, because there honestly couldn’t be a better way to spend the weekend with your friends doing the things you love.

-XOXO Kreena.

Detoxification

Photographer: Pooja Dedhia

As a follower of Lord Krishna, Janmashthami, was a special day for me and my family, and as per the customs the holy day gave me the opportunity to fast. My fast would enable me to only consume fruits and dairy products. Unlike other Gujju people (not naming anyone specific) who have tons of potatoes and Sabu Danna, and say “I’m fasting”.

Fasting once a month has shown to cleanse the body. Detoxification is about resting, cleaning and nourishing the body from the inside out. This is how I did it:

My day began early in the morning at which point I only consumed two warm glasses of water. I had a cup of coffee at noon, followed by an apple for lunch. Then had a pear late in the afternoon followed by a glass of milk in the evening. In between all those meals I drank tonnes of water as it keeps the body hydrated and replenished.

Health alert; Keep snacking on dry fruits throughout the day to keep your metabolism going. If dry fruits aren’t your thing try having the ABC juice. It’s a mixture of an Apple, Beetroot and Carrot…Doesn’t that sound delicious?

In my estimations a great detox wouldn’t be complete without taking care of your body externally.

Cleansing of the face is a great way of looking good and returning that glow you desperately missed. I put myself through a facial sauna for a good five minutes. At home, I have one of those facial sauna machines but for the people who don’t have one, simply boiling water will do the trick.

  1. Boil around half a liter of water on the stove.
  2. Tilt your head down so the vapour is evaporating up to your face.
  3. Put a towel over your head so the vapour doesn’t escape.

(I opted for a facial sauna which opens up the pores on my face, but it is essential to clean your face prior to undergoing the facial sauna, as it makes it easier for the pores to open).

After my refreshing facial sauna, I applied a mixture of tomato and lemon on my face. If you have oily skin, opt for fruits like orange, papaya, pineapple, or tomatoes. Conversely if you have dry skin you can opt for fruits like banana, papaya, or chickoo.

  • The mixture of tomato and lemon sat on my face for two minutes, which was followed by a rinse shortly thereafter, due to the lemon which was beginning to sting my face.
  • I did a quick two minute facial sauna again so my pores cleared out and washed my face with cold water to close the pores.

Moving on to my hair, it seemed to have gotten a little dry and frizzy due to the monsoon weather and the increase in humidity.

So I prepared a mixture of yogurt and lemon, which I applied directly onto my scalp. Yogurt conditions the hair, and the lemon makes the hair stronger. Apply the mixture to the scalp, and let it sit for a minimum of 20 minutes. You can pass that time by reading a book, watching TV or simply stalking people on Facebook…What!? “I know you all do it”.

Instead of wasting those 20 minutes by doing absolutely nothing but staring at the clock, I decided to give myself a mini pedicure. All you need to do is:

  • Soak your feet in a bucket of warm/hot water and some salt for 10 minutes.
  • Apply a moisturizer.
  • You can go further with cutting or filling your nails followed by painting them with a pretty nail paint. (P.S. neons are in this season)

As you can tell, I’m not a fan of spending thousands of rupees on fruity facials, hair washes, pedicures, or even using high end products. All of this can be done directly in the comfort of your home without breaking the bank at high end salons. I hope you try this out one day, and treat yourself to a nice dessert from all the money you just saved.

-XOXO Kreena