Sunday, March 20, 2011

Valentine's Day

Nothing is more disastrous than a valentine's day falling on Monday. While you were thinking of a romantic breakfast in bed,your boss was thinking of getting you to office early. So instead of making heart shaped toasts and eggs I spent my Valentines day morning in office. ..sigh....But... I somehow managed to wrap up my work by afternoon and rushed home.

Inspired by the success of our anniversary dinner at home,I now conduct every celebration here at our the breakfast in bed changed its form and became dinner on table...:) I haven't heard anyone eating toasts for dinner, but who cares, it's my life and I make the rules. I hardly had 3 hours, not much time to decor the place,but what is valentines day without a little decoration...a little red color.. In fact what is any celebration without some decor .(Nowadays I have this tendency to make everything mushy mushy).

A few balloons, tissue paper pompom balls, heart shaped rose wreath etc did the trick. Of course as always I managed to screw up things, after blowing up the balloons, I realized that Its air inside those golden beauties not hydrogen, yeah I completely forgot about the hydrogen tanks, so instead of floating balloons I made a balloon Garland.(So don't forget to add hydrogen tank in your shopping list along with balloons). It wasn't as beautiful as I planned.. :( And the rest you can imagine. We had toast, eggs, bananas, coffee, chocolates, brownies and some wine.. weird menu, huh???. But I can assure you it wasn't a disaster at all..

Here is some pictures to explain the whole story of decorations.

Chocolate dipped fruits and Brownies

Tissue paper Pom-poms. I did it my own way, But they explained it well in Martha stewards.
  Heart shaped Roses Wreath.
Wired Crystals for champagne stem
Heart Shaped Napkins, though they are actually origami book marks, I couldn't resist the idea of using it for napkins.


Sunday, January 23, 2011

A "Turn Down Service" @Home

Its been crazy busy last couple of days!!! skiing,hiking, shopping,... what not..People take vacations to refuel themselves,ironically I was left with no energy after mine...But no complaints. I enjoyed to the core and at the end that is what matters.Right?

Last week we were excited to welcome back our good friends AJ and CM,who got married recently. we had this plan of spending the first day together at our place..It was their first visit after getting married...So I wanted to give them a surprise.

So I spiced up their bedroom a little. :)

Making  the bed was the first and most important thing to take care of..keeping it neat and tidy..  I am sure I don't have to explain how to make a bed with pillows and bed spread. .forget about the blanket. Instead I used a smooth thin bed linen/spread. the thinner the better.. I have seen hotels doing the turn down services very elegantly ...But I never got a chance to find out how they are doing it. and even though I spend hours and days in front of my lap top, nothing came out,everyone has a picture of a beautiful bed, but no one has an idea how they did it. So at last I thought I would try to figure it out myself. and to be honest it wasn't easy,..After fiddling with the sheets for hours I  finally was able to recreate a pattern.

1) I folded the sheet into two along the breadth. and placed it on the foot side of the bed..

2,)Now without disturbing the lower side I started folding the upper portion in accordion fashion.

3,4)I did the folding till the middle of the sheet and started doing the same from the other side.

5)then I pulled the folds downwards together.

6,7) Take the two end of the tails side ways and tucked them under the sheet where the tail can make it look like a heart, circle....

(the sheet in the picture is not wide enough, you should use a wider one to create a beautiful design.)

Then I put some rose petals on the boundary, to pop out the design..

I made two swans out of their bath towels. You can find the instructions here. I also placed a bunch or roses with the swans.

On the side table I placed some fresh roses. two glasses of wine, some chocolate dipped strawberries and a candle center piece.I used three cylindrical glass bud vases for this,(I got it from dollar tree),poured some water in it, and floated tea light candles..

I also placed some tea light candles on the floor in 3 separate heart shapes..

The Result... ;)


Tuesday, January 11, 2011

A magical Evening

Now that I have created a blog, what I am gonna talk about?? huuuu.. I haven't really given a thought about that... Politics?.. Health?.. History?..Food?..Romance?..Travel?..Gosh, my imagination folder is running out of items.. Wait, Romance? what a better topic, a person so in love can talk about..sigh.. huh??I too used to feel the same towards this romance thing..I mean being romantic is OK. but romantic this, romantic that,cliche, isn't it? But things change when you have a boyfriend and an anniversary to come..And, none of these attitude really helped me with that..I have already bought him some Blu-Ray discs, a shirt, cards..But I wanted to do something different, something special....not the "usual dinner+film+walk thing".

There was only one month left for our anniversary, and i was brushing my memory to find some clues about the things he need, things he would love to have.Good lord, there was none.!!!I started to prod and pry him for info without him knowing..Nothing..Men are so bad at giving clues. Why can't he be just like me,you know, who indirectly mentions what she needs, every other week for the past three months.. :D .. .So finally I gave up and moved to my Plan B. I searched " anniversary gifts for him" in Google a zillion times,Nothing..the savior of all time "Google" really didn't save me this time.. I was at the end of my rope...So I finally decided to do the "Usual Thing".I tried to convince myself that this isn't that bad..that wasn't much of a problem as I was left with no choice..but the real problem was, our anniversary falls on Christmas day, and there is not going to be many restaurants open on that day, not to mention good ones, with a nice view of the rocky mountains. After making some calls, I accepted the fact that I have to do it myself. No one else is going cook for us that day. But its fine.I can cook.. and that way I can make it even more special, more romantic...yeah, that is actually a better idea..OMG!! That was a moment of truth..and my mind began to fill with these amazing ideas.

To make things short, I decided to put a gazebo on the lake side, (our apartment community have one) and to set a private candle light dinner there. A quiet romantic dinner in the open, under the star-lit sky by the moonlight..wooo..I am getting good at this. But problems weren't going to end there.. Its Colorado, and its December. there is no way you can sit outside,without proper heating, for a minute,not to mention a whole dinner.. sigh!!! In that case fixing it even in our patio was out of the question.. Now What??? I have never felt this disappointed.. Then this crazy idea got into my mind. why cant I do it inside my house, by the fire place. and make it look like an outdoor place.I can easily get a view of the Rocky Mountains by adjusting the blind on the sliding glass door.. hurray.. this is it. this is what I want, in that way I can even wore my favorite cocktail dress..

So guys this is what I did at the end..

Putting a gazebo inside our living room was not only impossible but was ridiculous. so I changed my plans and made a tent/ canopy with some red drapes instead. I used deep redwood polyester drapes normally use for windows. You can also use long scarf topper for windows instead or the celebration canopy. Using some cardboard pipes which usually comes with gift wrapping paper(any kind of pies will do, it should be strong enough to support your drape), laundry chord, and the drapes I made a tent.

I pulled the chord through the pipes as shown in the picture ( unfortunately i didn't take pictures while i was working)and made a hanging square shaped frame with the pipes by tying the ends of two pipes and nailed it to the ceiling/ walls.You can make which ever shapes you want, then you have to drop the drapes on the frame.

I pulled the drapes in the middle to the sides to give an entrance to the tent.I have covered only two sides of my tent as shown in the picture. if you want you can pull the drapes in different styles or on four sides.Let your imagination run wild..

Inside the tent on the ceiling you can hang some paper lanterns of different sizes.. I did the entire settings on a budget, so I made them myself. I have learned while in school, to make paper balls, I used the same idea, and put an  LED tea light inside the lantern .I found a great site where the making has explained in detail..

As I mentioned, at the time I did this, I didn't have any idea that I am going to blog this. and sometimes taking pictures will kill all those beautiful moments. you will be so immersed in picture taking that you will forget to enjoy the moment.. anyway we did enjoy the moment.. so no pictures.. :D..  I made 12 lanterns of different sizes. Instead of using red colored card stock(which I couldn't get in so many numbers), I used different colored card stocks and covered it with red gift wrapper (from dollar tree)..

I also put some Glow-in-The dark-stars(which I bought from dollar tree) in between these hanging  lanterns to give an open air feeling, it was a pretty sight.

On the floor I stacked two blankets and a matching Bed spread.. At the center I placed a low profile coffee table. I u don't have one you can even use a large TV box or so instead, cover it with a nice matching table cloth. I placed cushions on either side of the table.

Now you can decide on your center piece. I really didn't have one, or may be I had more than one. In a bowl pour  some water, place some cranberries and tea light candles. Floating candles are the best, but tea lights works just fine, and they are cheap too..I got 100 tea light candles for 6$ from party city. Then I put a chocolate cake at the center, which I baked myself, though the cake looks lousy( was my first attempt)it tasted fantastic :D. Also put a knife with red ribbon on the side. Then I placed two red candles on crystal stands on either side of the cake.You can put a champagne bottle by its side and a single red rose on the other side.Place a firework candle in a wine glass.Place plates in front of the cushions on the table..You can fold napkins in some cute ways.I did a bishop's hat this time. Place spoon, knife and fork by the plate side, and also put a champagne glass.

For the dinner I made him his favorite Chicken Biriyani, Mutton Roast and Meen Pollichathu. I hope I will post the recipes some time soon. Now the table is ready. I placed my gifts on one side of the entrance and on the other side I made an origami towel heart, and filled it with chocolates.

The tent is all done now. And it was time to put some lights..You may have seen those paper bag lanterns.. I made a little change in its make..I bought a gift wrap, white one with silver glitter on it (from Target for $5).. I made around 30-40 lanterns from it. all cylindrical ones.. yeah, not  square ones. It is easy to just have to cut few rectangles from the gift wrapper. Roll it so that it will become cylindrical.. Now put some glue on one end of the paper and press it to the other end.If u want you can put holes on it in different shapes..I couldn't do it due to time constrains..I made a path with satin rose petals to the door and on either side of the path I placed the paper lanterns with teal light candles inside. I also placed some scented candles in front of the tent.

I had also made a play-list of our favorite songs.which I played in the background..

I'm glad that I managed to do the "usual things" in an unusual way.And in spite of the goof-ups, gave him a surprise! Planing and executing this wasn't easy, but the look on his face, when he opened the door,was worth all the trouble.


The Beginning

I have been brooding over the idea of blogging for a long while now. Food  Blog, that was what in my mind all the time, though the credit of seeding that idea in my mind goes to my boyfriend MMG. According to him, I have grown from a foodaholic,cooking phobic girl to a not-so-bad cook and its time for me to impart my wisdom and blunders to the rest of world... I too agree on that to an extend, I still wonder how i can enjoy something i used to hate to the core. Necessity, that is the answer.. Being in a foreign land, where nadan food can only come from one's kitchen, forced me to enter that forbidden land, and of course there was no Mom, no boyfriend to cook for me.. That is  how to it all began.. starting from numerous ISD calls to home back in Kerala, surfing through internet, religiously following the recipes in various food blogs.. slowly i too managed to cook.

But this is'nt really about food. I know i have blabbered about it too much, and all of you got the idea that i am starting a food blog. This is a mixed blog . I don't know if there is any thing as "Mixed Blog",I couldn't find a better name..anyway this blog is about my endeavors.. my memories, my Life..

I hope this Blog will make someones life a little easier.