chocolateisfromheaven

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I. Cannot. Sleep.

In Uncategorized on November 29, 2012 at 4:00 am

It’s been a while since I last blogged, and I have missed it! Was planning on writing about the recent changes in my life but today I just want to say this:

I. Cannot. Sleep.

And it is driving me insane! I used to have a very stable, boring sleep cycle. Early to bed, early to rise. Clockwork. In the past month, I have found myself increasingly tossing and turning, struggling to fall asleep and then waking up to the shrill, annoying sound of my alarm. I am very close to smashing my phone. The next groggy 20 minutes are spent trying to drag myself out of bed and then race to get ready and rush out the door. Oh and I am quite often hungry, or gulping down a half prepared meal. Because I am late. Because I am tired. Because I couldn’t sleep. And I am giving anyone cheerful in the morning, lunch or evening, an angry jealous hateful glare. Is my frustration showing?

The up part is that I am responding in real time to my friends in different time zones all over the world, many of whom get quite confused about where I am currently residing, because regular people would not be awake at this time on a weekday.

As I type this, I have 2 hours remaining before my alarm goes off for the new day. And I haven’t slept a wink. New record. And I am hungry. Oh well, I think I will drag my tired self out of bed and cook me a large, heavy breakfast and then prepare an extra large caffeine shot which hopefully will somehow power me through the day. And I will attempt to be civil. And, by the power of positive thinking, will crash into bed, at night, and fall into peaceful slumber!

Now that’s a plan!

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The month of giving

In Social Entrepreneurship, Uncategorized on August 11, 2012 at 10:42 am

The month of Ramadhan is when Muslims all over the world fast. It is a month of meditation, spirituality and a greater focus on doing good. In Dubai, I have witnessed, and been inspired by, many ordinary individuals who go out of their way to help others and specially those less fortunate. Some have made it their personal goal to change the lives of others for the better and work for that all year round. In Ramadhan though, there is always a spike in the generosity of people giving to those less fortunate. Here are some of my favourite places to volunteer and also a couple of new ones that I have spotted in the city:

  1. Saher Shaikh is truly an inspirational woman. She founded AdoptACamp which was born out of 1 act of kindness and is now helping over 32,000 men!
    AdoptACamp Care Package Night

    AdoptACamp Care Package Night. Awesome!

     AdoptaCamp hold an annual Care Package night in which volunteers help pack boxes filled with daily essentials, such as soap, toothpaste, tooth brush, etc, for laborers working in Dubai. The vibe there is very positive, high in energy and what I like the most is that everyone is smiling while working! It’s a proper event with entire families participating and groups of friends attending. This year I went with some friends and five kids who were volunteering for the first time. They thought the whole place was in their words ‘awesome!’. 🙂

    2. A new find of mine on the streets of Dubai has been MotiRoti! They have a wrap stand and have decided to feed around 175 laborers working in the area, every day, starting the ‘Feed a Blue Belly’ campaign. Have not volunteered there yet as I help out at another place at the same time but love what they do and the way they have generated a lot of enthusiasm and support, and they seem to have a knack with coming up with creative names!

    3. The Barsha Boys. Well this technically has no name but a friend of mine gives out food every evening in Ramadhan to low income workers in the Barsha area. It’s a small effort with only a few involved and I had decided to be more hands on this year and it has been very rewarding. The men are so grateful to receive the food packages and are always greeting us with smiles and we started to call them our Barsha boys. It is a very humbling and rewarding experience to serve those who have it less easy than you. We are truly blessed to have food on our plates, a good place to sleep and the every day comforts that we take for granted. We might have our problems, but there are always those who are worse off than us.

    The smile says it all...

    The smile says it all…

     

Earth Hour and Plastic

In Social Entrepreneurship, Uncategorized on April 2, 2012 at 10:03 am

In an empty lot I came across this which speaks for itself:

20120402-155518.jpg

The lot was between Dubai Internet City and Knowledge Village, which happens to be a very clean and well maintained area so this took me by surprise. It wasn’t a big lot but there easily could have been a hundred or so plastic bottles littering the place! Just a couple of days back we had Earth Hour and seeing this made me think ‘what are we doing to our planet?!’ I use plastic bottles daily without a thought. This will make me think twice.

Chicken, tomatoes and an indoor BBQ

In Uncategorized on February 18, 2012 at 4:31 am

cherry tomatoes

My cooking skill level could be described as this: Less than Nigella Lawson, less than Jamie Oliver (not that he is any less skilled than Nigella), less than someone-who-can-burn-water. Yes, that’s about right. That’s where I stand. So when I have to cook/bake something I end up scouring the internet for recipes which have the key words of ‘easy’, ‘simple’, ‘one pot’… What is becoming one of my favorite scouring grounds is the BBC Good Food site and it was here that I came across this summery chicken kebabs recipe that I decided to shoot for.

Now when I cook, I google, zoom, pinch, then look up and compare my own creation in the making. Siri needs to have eyes so I can ask: ‘Siri, does what I am cooking look remotely close to what it is supposed to?’ It is not a pretty process.

My culinary endeavor didn’t turn out too bad though. I think the colorful veggies were a saving grace, the orange zest gave it a fresh tinge, the spring onions a beautiful green color and I ended up enjoying these light summery kebabs with a glass of blue lemonade. Now this would be perfect for summer.

Ingredients pulsed

Skewers in the making

Power of the crowd

In Uncategorized on February 16, 2012 at 5:03 am

Came across this yesterday: on.ted.com/Engelen It’s a 6 min (about) talk about an example of a crowdsourced tool for healthcare. People power is amazing and the benefits that could be derived from an amalgamation of people plus technology are mind boggling. Such simple ideas can have so many potential applications. Isn’t it kind of like foursquare but ‘scientific’? Am I making any sense?? I think I better stop writing now…

My get-fit status for the week: Total 5 km walk completed so far. It’s a start!

Today’s thought: get fit!

In Uncategorized on February 14, 2012 at 10:56 am

I want to get fit; or fittish :). I need to get fit. I keep repeating that in my read but there is a stronger voice that tends to dominate: Laziness. I am lazy. There, I admit it. I am lazy! *sigh* 

So since I have started to blog (let’s see how long this lasts), I thought why not use the blog to help myself stick to a fitness routine. I don’t want to do anything fancy, just want to keep it simple enough so that I actually follow through with it. My mind wanders easily and has an annoying knack of dumping thoughts of doing useful things in the ‘forgotten’ compartment. Too lazy even to remember to go for a walk, get some cold fresh air, breathe. Ok, not so bad…

Now on to the planning of my fitness routine! I do have a membership at the gym but can’t remember the last time I actually went there. This is embarrassing and what a waste of hard earned cash. Let me start with this:

1. Walk for 3km thrice a week

2. Visit gym once a week and use those fancy machines. Ermm.. I need help! 

I will probably play around with this and improvize as I go along. Don’t have a specific plan. Let me start by just moving! 

Oh and I want to incorporate use of the Nike Training Club (NTC) app! The app is cool and the workouts are easy to watch but difficult to replicate 😀  That’s the challenge for me: Get into a fitness routine, stick with it, and get fit enough to complete a beginner level workout on NTC!

Pathetic, but it’s a start!

Food!

In Uncategorized on February 13, 2012 at 4:45 am

Came across this beautiful site: http://eatfitdubai.tumblr.com/

Those gorgeous pictures make me want to cook! The colors are so vibrant and in comparison, my breakfast looks so bland and heavy now 😦 How do people maintain a healthy eating habit? I can never seem to stick with it.

fruit

Hello world!

In Uncategorized on February 12, 2012 at 7:10 am

And a newbie decides to blog! Let’s see how long this spur of the moment decision will last…

English: Newbie Cottages

Image via Wikipedia

 

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