Why the weekday meals?!

I was talking to my neighbor while our kids were playing, and we spoke about our weekday meals. She asked me why it was so very important for me to cook everyday, particularly when I can relax and use takeaway, instant pot, store frozen food etc. and make my life routine simpler.

I pondered a bit about why I’m working myself into a frenzy in the kitchen when I could get away with taking it easy, by planning big batch meals, freezing them and microwaving them for consumption! Why should I cook? What was behind it all?

Well, I grew up in a home where my mom used to make fresh meals three times of the day. Breakfast, lunch and dinner. I remember eating hot piping fresh food everyday. Our refrigerator was very small first of all, so there was no place to store anything but the basic supply of perishables. All veggies were off a cart from a street vendor every morning.

Most of Amma’s time was spent in the kitchen. She managed to keep herself occupied and happy by being completely at home, with her sewing classes, chit fund kitties, community service besides caring for our family and additional pets, feeding grooming and keeping us mentally and physically healthy. Same was the case with my maternal grandmother!

Like many Indian households, we had a maid to come clean the home and do the dishes everyday. She was given hot piping South Indian filter coffee with breakfast of the day, a reasonable allowance, bonus money for her family needs occasionally, festival bonuses, unlimited holidays and all our hands me down clothes for her adolescent daughters and leftover food. That was the norm. She would pack away all the food in boxes to take home to edit and fix them, only to feed her family.

Here in the US, if I made a big batch of anything outside of one meal, it goes into an airtight glass box and slowly makes it way to the back of the refrigerator. It goes into a box first only because I do not have the heart to thrash good food and I don’t have a maid who will eat the leftovers. At the end of the week (or month) it will only be forgotten, not to mention rotten, and cringingly thrashed.

It basically comes down to the fact that I do not eat leftovers, and that’s how I grew up. HP also does not eat leftovers. That’s his preference. According to him, a good chef should learn to make the right amount of one meal, not too much, not too little! Yep! I know! So I’m learning, and getting better. My meal proportions are usually 1.5 for one meal, so I now end up carrying it for my lunch the next day. I can’t spend my energy and money thinking about where to go for lunch and what to eat, so I’m happily eating last night’s dinner for lunch the next day.

If you see the food habits and patterns, it arises early in our childhood. Like most of us have read, everything starts from home. If I did not grow up seeing my mom balance her interests and that of the family, I would not be able to do what I do today.

Both HP and I want to make sure that we inculcate this to our son. We want him to see us cook a meal, feed him, provide for him and put together a contented and happy life.

So no matter how tired I am, I am finding ways to keep myself motivated on weekdays to create and spend quality time by cooking at home, to get my son interested and learn about his food. So this Instagram weekday meals is mostly to keep me going, a way to inspire others in the process and enjoy cooking and create memories!

Carpe Diem my friends!

Washington High School Ceramics feature, Fremont Arts and Wine Festival 2018.

The one beautiful stall I was in awe of from yesterday’s visit was the Washington High school ceramic studio at the Downtown Fremont Wine and Arts Festival. It was a quaint and pretty stall with lots of action and plenty of cute and interesting things. I was drawn to it instantly.

I picked up pair of pretty pink small bowls and printed ceramic coffee mugs for the win. For $10 and $8 each, it was a steal, not to mention a good addition to our home collection.
I read that all sales go to improving the ceramic studio at the high school! Score! The famous pottery teacher and his students were the highlight of the stall, jovial, burned out in the sun, but still working on their ceramics as we shopped, fifth year in a row at the festival.That kind of passion and dedication is inspiring. Such a treasure!

I spoke to Mr.Rodenkirk about my project and he gave me a budget to work with and handed me a card to take the idea forward. The studio is a mile from downtown Fremont and I will be visiting soon and will keep you all posted.

My project.
I wanted to make custom paella dishes for rice and biryani for home. I was told that the budget for that might be around $50-60, depending on the type and complexity of design! I might get a 12″ and an 8″ one.

Want some of these ceramics? The festival is still on today in downtown. Go find them else they are going to be at the Mountain View festival of arts on September 8-9th.

If any of you want any custom ceramics, write to me, I can coordinate the project for you too. And I’ll definitely write about the studio visit here. Am super excited!!
#HPRMH #radindiscity #RMstories #downtownfremont #downtownwineandarts #artsfestival #ceramics #crockery #hprmhome #hprmhomeprojects #downtownarts #fremont #mountainview #bayarea

Day 4/7 of nostalgia week. Sitting amongst stacks of files in my office, I crave for chaat, and I remember April 2008. I went on this solo trip to Ahmedabad, and gorged on all that mouthwatering Chaat while walking to Le Corbusier’s Millowners Association building. I was spending precious solo time in rickshaws that took me from Correa’s Gandhi Smarak Sangrahalaya to the ancient Step Wells.The Step Wells are a thing of beauty and peace, it’s a must visit for Ahmedabad. The hot and bustling NID campus had some peacocks strolling around, maybe to add an element of royalty?! The Gufha was definitely overrated, It should have a function to it rather than just an artsy cave.
I did go back to Ahmedabad solo again in the later half of 2011, @nishu_sheth_ was throwing such a big wedding then! 😁 Me, I was almost hooked on to the phone and synching up with HP. Good times. The city was cooler, better microclimates, thanks to the gorgeous rehabilitation of the Sabarmati river, the locals seemed to enjoy the evenings strolls too. .
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#RMstories #ahmedabad #nostalgia #architecture #stepwells #stepwellsofindia #summersinindia #architectureofIndia #designgeek #architecturegeek (at Ahmedabad, India)

Day 2/7 of nostalgia week. This one is from June 2012, when the domestically challenged, newly-wed wife like me enjoyed a quiet afternoon building some models and developing stop motion videos of my jewellery boxes.
Combined joy of modular boxes and architectural imagination from @thecontainerstore that has been with our organized life for the past six years. .
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#RMstories #nostagiaweek #sanjosedays #containerstore #modulorboxes #architecturalmodels #colorandlife #acrylicboxes (at San Jose, California)

Day 5/7 of nostalgia week. This was my life for half a decade since 2000! Five solid years of hand drawn beauties on that drafting table, rest assured, I did save my back! And five more years of literally non-stop work. On man, highly productive decade. This picture might have been 2004-early 2005. Thankfully, there is only one picture of that desk with a slight hint of my model-making table to the left. And that’s that, the rest is a memory! The messy rooms, the fun, the long nights, the craziness and everything that was part of becoming an architect! Cheers! .
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#RMstories #architecturegeek #architect #modelmaker #draftingtable #handdrawing #handdrafting #architectureschool #adecadeofarchitecture (at J. P. Nagar)

Day 6/7 of nostalgia week! It was a Saturday evening in 2010, just before I was ready to take on the world by myself, when I rightfully started to fear my decision to go our on a solo venture. I feared that home and life as I knew it would change unrecognizably when I returned. And I desperately needed something to remind me of my preciousness, so I pulled out a camera to take lots of pictures.
Look at it! This picture is dated at the top right and developed, only to be scanned later and preserved in my phone archive now! Featured is our good old ‘kine,’ the coolest moped in town that we’ve ever owned, carefully tucked away into our building setback with tact and precision so as to allow our dogs to slip by the edges.
I’m oozing with warm memories looking at this picture…….and that’s what this whole week is about! A beautiful reminder of the good old days, on the two wheeler, buzzing around every nook and corner of the city, and amongst greenery at home and all over the city of Bangalore! Happy Friday folks!
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#RMstories #bangaloredays #adulthood #twentiesinindia #Indianlife #kinetichonda #twowheelers #mopeds #gardencity #greencity (at J. P. Nagar)

Day 3/7 of nostalgia week. Back to our first living room setup for #HPRMhome, way back to July 2012. I still love this, and I have (some) pieces with us today. Also, thank you @purplehazerads who gave me good advice about American home design. Thanks for telling me that @ikeausa is perhaps the best place to start your first home, given that there’s no access to good quality craftsmanship that I was used to in India.
Kindly note: the painting sat on top of the futon, till the time we used push pins to hang them up. 😐
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#RMstories #radindiscity #designandcolor #rentals #apartmentlife #apartmentdesign #colortexture #colorandlife #ikeastarterhome #renterlifestyle (at San Jose, California)

Day 1/7 of Nostalgia week begins today. With no particular order, I’m hashing out many pictures from the past, only to remind me that life is filled with these fond memories, and I’m taking this week to cherish them all!
Featured is one frame from 2006. This view was part of my everyday life in my early career as an architect. It is important to celebrate the everyday, especially at work. This one is a good reminder of that!
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#RMstories #contemporaryarchitecture #bangaloredays #nostagiaweek #radindiscity #colortexture (at 14, Langford Road Banglore)

It’s not a break, it’s a vacation…..for a mom to have few peaceful minutes to herself for chai and store bought samosas. It’s is the season for crazy flu and fevers…..so I got myself a flu shot to nurse my baby and hubby back to normal! Oh man! Let’s hope your having a better Friday than me! I’m hoping that the weekend turns into a milestone that’s healthier and a better next week.
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#RMstories #HPRMhome #HPRM #chai&samosas #indiansnack #breaktime #metime #adraktea #masalachai #potatosamosas #souvenierCollesium #italyfinds #breakfasttablescenes #homesweethome #thisweekisdone #onedayatatime #momentsToReflect

Day 6/7 of Italy finds!
After avoiding local vendors we walked to the other end of San Lorenzo market to feed ourselves in the well stocked Za Za restaurant. Just outside of this place we for a small store called “La Botega di Fiorenza.” Go right in and surround yourself in a sea of delights. It is home to these exquisitely crafted ceramic boxes, now part of my growing box collection. The detail photo simply does not do justice to the real deal of running your hand across the lid! We went back there twice, brilliant find! Totally recommended.
Happy Saturday people!
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#RMstories #HPRM #HPRMvacation #ceramicboxes #boxcollector #boxcollection #roundboxes #blueceramic #blueboxes #patternlover #patternlids #whiteandblueboxes #italyfinds #italianhandmade #wheninitaly #florence #florenceartisanceramics #LaBotegaDiFiorenza (at Trattoria Zà Zà Firenze)

1/7 week of Italian finds.
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This is a ceramic RAKU clock. Scroll right for the address and location.
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The description says “Ceramic Raku is an interesting and unique exhibit to the ancient RAKU technique. Each item is taken out of the oven while red-hot and quickly places in a metallic pot filled with combustible material (saw dust, hay, dry leaves…( Once the pot has been covered, flames deprive items of oxygen allowing oxides to turn into metals. This is what makes our products shimmer with marvelous metallic effects.”
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Well, CARPE DIEM! my dear friends!
This clock is at our entrance door, just as we get out for our day!
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#RMstories #HPRMhome #HPRM #HPRMvacation #Italianhandmade #italianfinds #rakuclocks #instablogger #productreview #ceramicsfromItaly #handmade #exclusivedesign #designiseverything #radindiscity #ceramicraku #ancienttraditions #italianculture #travelfinds #bringbackhome #clocks #raku.it