Tuesday, 26 March 2013

Attention Please!!

Friends may I have your attention please? I want to inform you that tomorrow (27th March) is a special day in India. It's Holi - the Color Festival! We have been waiting for the day since a year! So, I couldn't post in the next week. I promise you that in next post, I will share all the fun and pictures with you. My next blog post will publish on 3rd April, 2013. Till then, good bye. Take care of yourself and your family!

Happy Holi

Tips from the kitchen of an Indian homemaker


Today’s Tips

  1. Clean your oven with 5 teaspoon baking soda, 5 drops dawn dish soap and 4 teaspoon vinegar; mix altogether and spread all over. Let it sit for 15 minutes then wipe off.
  2. Cover your refrigerator shelf with Saran's Press and Seal Wrap to avoid dirt; when it gets dirty you just peel it off and apply a new piece!
Beauty Tips:
  1. If your eyes are stinging; place some slices of cool cucumber over them for five minutes. You will instantly feel refreshed.
  2. Full of lactic acid, full-fat Greek yogurt can help moisturize skin and soothe sunburns. It can also work like a clay mask to improve skin’s overall texture. Apply it liberally to clean skin and wait until it dries before rinsing off.


Flavors of India

Gourd with Prawn


  • Prawn: -                                                                                250gm.
  • Gourd (small size):-                                                            1 piece
  • Potato(medium size) (cut into small pieces):-                2 piece 
  • Ginger paste: -                                                                    1tablespoon
  • Tomato(slice in four pieces):-                                           1 piece
  • Green chillies:-                                                                    2 pieces
  • Red Chili Powder (if you want):-                                      1/2teaspoon
  • Cumin Powder:-                                                                  1/2teaspoon
  • Coriander Powder:-                                                            1teaspoon
  • Turmeric Powder:-                                                             1/2teaspoon
  • Bay leaves:-                                                                         2 pieces
  • Cumin seeds:_                                                                     ½ teaspoon
  • Mustard / Refined Oil:-                                                    1Cup(150gm)
  • Sugar:-                                                                                 1teaspoon
  • Salt:-                                                                                     to tast


  1. Finely chopped the g0urd, wash and take aside.
  2. Wash the prawns and marinate with salt and turmeric powder before cooking.
  3. Full heat the oil in a pan & fry the prawns for 1min. and set aside.
  4. In the same oil, add the bay leaves and cumin seeds, fry for 30-40 seconds.
  5. Now, pour in the potato, salt, turmeric powder and fry for 3-4min till it should take up a bit of brownish.
  6. Now, add the chopped Gourd and mix well.
  7. Add ¼ cup water, ginger pest, tomatos, all the powders of ingredients, and sugar in it & cook for 2-3 min.
  8. Again add ¼ cup water and fried prawns and mix well.
  9. Cover and let it cook for 10 minutes on low flame.
  10. Take it off the flame when the potato well cooked.
  11. Serve hot with Rice or Indian plain Roti.

Sunday, 24 March 2013

‘Celebrating Girls, Celebrating Women’

My Life, My Womanhood

Friends, today I want to share something new, something different! On the occasion of the Women’s Day, I told you about my thoughts on womanhood and in the end of the March, the month for women, I am going to tell you my story! Some sweet moments, some bitter moments of my life and of course, how I have been celebrating my womanhood since my childhood days! Hope you will enjoy it!
My story starts on a rainy day in August, 1980; when my mother came to know that after two sons, she was pregnant again. Hearing the news, my grandmother warned her jokingly that she wants a girl child with dark complexion, otherwise she would be punished!  Sounds incredible? But, this is the truth! In our family you rarely find girl child and in my grandma’s opinion, girl child brings honor and prosperity! And because of untimely death of her two very beautiful and fair daughters, my grandmother developed such a prejudice! So,
on 23rd June, 1981, I was born like a princess with dark complexion! I was the third girl in my family and was pampered by all! But for my father’s transfer, we had to shift from our ancestral house to a flat at Burdwan in West Bengal after one year. 

With my two brothers

I have two brothers who love me so much. I brought up with them and with most caring parents. Before I went to school, I never thought about my complexion or anything else! But, after joining school, I had to think about it! I noticed that the ‘bubbly-looking’ girls were not only getting more attention in the class but they were also ruling over the students! They used to either bully me or just ignored! I was little shy then and being unable to cope up with such crudity, I felt like dejected & forlorn. My parents noticed my sudden psychological changes & changes in my behavioral patterns. Consulting a child psychologist, they admitted me to a Karate school to make me happy, smart and of course confident.

When I was in class III

In the Karate school, I had gotten my self-confidence. My teachers taught me to use the power within me; I came to realize that being a woman, I am a very part of the “Mother Nature” & never have I felt inferior to anybody since then! The regular exercises, Yuga and Meditation (which is an essential part of learning Karate) transformed me completely & I became a fearless girl beaming with self confidence & self respect, always celebrating girlhood!

With my one of trainers

I completed my schooling in the year 2000 and then went to college. A new world started unveiling itself! (In the mean time with my growing age, I became very friendly!) In that period, I came to know that there exists a difference in boys and girls! My parents never forced me to choose only girls as friends as they believe in equality between boys and girls; but, when I choose some boys as my friends and they used to visit my house for some reasons or other, our neighbors became so curios! They started making gossips about me! I ignored them and thanks to my parents; they did it too. I was celebrating womanhood with all my friends, boys or girls whoever he or she may be! 

When I was in college

During that period, I have fallen in love! He was a friend of my elder brother and came to our house On the occasion of Vasant Panchami means Swaraswati Puja. It was not a love at first sight affair but I felt something within me. We became close friends after some day and our friendship turned into love! Life had not been the same monotonous affair as it was used to be before! After few years, he has gotten a job and we decided to get married! In this period, I came to know about casteism! My fiancĂ© is Brahmin but I’m not and that was a big issue in the society! Can you believe that? In this twenty first century, a very large section of our society shouts for their castes! However a determined couple can overcome any hindrance if they are true to their hearts! My fiancĂ© has been standing beside me always! We were fighting together and won the battle! I got a lesson that there are more things to fight against in heaven and earth other than complexion or gender!

With my husband
After my marriage, I just have forgotten everything except my husband and our families. We built a nest with two of us and I always make myself busy in it. It is my husband, who taught me that I too have an identity as a woman except being a wife, or a homemaker! I have started to think about myself! Now I’m a blogger, have started exercising daily, running a tutorial class for the students of X-XII. It is a well known saying, “there is always a woman behind a successful man”, but I want to say, it is also possible that a man can lift a woman to the road of success if he wants. My husband does this job perfectly! Now, I have been celebrating every Woman’s Day and every day as a Women’s Day together!  

“The true test of your manhood is how you treat a woman. All woman, Any woman, Every woman”.

This is the page, that is celebrating womanhood everyday: http://www.womensweb.in/articles/celebrating-girls-celebrating-women/

Saturday, 23 March 2013

Festivals of India in the month of March

Sri Sri Ramakrishna Paramhansa Jayanti


Swami Ramakrishna Paramhansa was an incomparable spiritual saint, whose teachings influenced many lives across the globe and continues to do so till date, becoming more and more distinct as the effects of his God-centered life marked in our contemporary human culture. Swami-ji himself practiced all the different religions and worshipped Goddess Kali, Jesus Christ and Allah throughout his life. He did so in order to experience and teach that all religions lead to one common, supreme power of Almighty!

Swami ji were born in 1836 at Kamarpukur in West Bengal, which is about 70 miles away from Kolkata. During the short life span of 50 years, Swamiji exercised a profound spiritual influence and encouraged people towards secularism. He taught that there is one supreme power of Almighty whether he is Bhagwan (the God) of Hindus or Allah of Muslims, or Jesus of Christians or Guru Nanak of Sikhs. That absolute power remains one and only one, only the name differs from religion to religion.

Sri Ramakrishna Paramahansa’s Jayanti is celebrated with great ecstasy and happiness in India, especially at all the headquarters of the Ramakrishna mission. The birthday of this great guru is considered as one of the religious festival and is celebrated across the nation. Large number of people belonging to different religions converge together to pay their homage to this unsurpassed saint and an ecstatic holy man, whose teachings remains in the heart of people.

The birthday of Sri Ramakrishna Paramahansa is another famous religious festival in India, which is celebrated every in early March at the Belur Math in Howrah district, West Bengal, the headquarter of the Ramakrishna mission. This festival draws attention from not only Hindus but also from the people of other religions and Non-Indians, and lakhs of people converge there to pay homage to the great saint.

Swami Ramakrishna Paramhans Jayanti is celebrated on the 2nd day of Phalgun Shukla Paksh every year. In 2013, Swami ji’s Jayanti was on 13th March.

Friday, 22 March 2013

Destination India

West Bengal (PART-V)

Cooch Behar (2)





This is a small sub-urban area of Coochbehar district. The name derived from a rivulet called "Jorai Nodi" which is a tributary of the river Sankosh. Danio rerio and Danio dangila species of fishes are available in Jorai Rivulet. Borealis spp., the rare fishes of Himalayan foothills are available here apart from Raidak and Sankosh river.This fish is locally called "Boirali maach".The small suburb is famous for Raas-mela (Fair based on Radha-Krishna's life). The railway station, named Jorai, has uniqueness in it. There are three railway stations, named Kamakhyaguri, Jorai and Srirampur, comes in a consecutive row which belong to three separate districts, named Jalpaiguri, Coochbehar (both are of West Bengal ) and Kokrajhar (of Assam), respectively.

Baneshwar Shiv Temple



Situated at a distance of about 10 km to the North of Cooch Behar town, the temple has a 'Shivalinga' (the symble of Lord Shiva) 10 feet below the plinth level. Also present in the temple is 'Gouripat'. By the side of the main temple is another temple which has the statute of 'Ardhanariswar' installed. 


On the occasions of Madan Chaturdashi and Dol Purnima this statue is carried temporarily to the Madan Mohan Temple of Cooch Behar town. This has given it the fame as ‘Movable Baneswar'.There is a big pond within the temple campus having a large number of tortoises. Some of the tortoises are very old and big in size. At Siva Chaturdashi a big mela is held here for a week.

Kamteswari Temple


This temple situated at a distance of about 35 km west of Cooch Behar Town, the original temple is now destroyed. The present temple has been established by Maharaja Pran Narayan in 1665 the throne of Devi is situated here. Beside the main temple 2 smaller temples also exist at the back-side of the temple courtyard. At the gate a Tarakeswar Sivalinga exists. A large number of festivals are observed here of which the Bath Festival of Debi in the month of Magh is worth mentioning.

Sagar Dighi


Situated in the Cooch Behar Town itself; the huge tank was excavated by Maharaja Hitendra Narayan. It is a popular rendezvous in the evening, surrounded by heritage buildings including Victor House and a War Memorial where a tank is kept. During winter months one can spot migratory birds on the water surface and the nearby trees.



It is a recognized bird sanctuary, situated about 42 km from Cooch Behar Town. It has a deer park and a recently built aquarium where fishes, turtles, seven nos. of leopards, Peafowl are kept. You may spot Chinese Fishing Nets on the way to Rasikbil. Rasikbil is a complex of wet land, the name of important water bodies are Bochamari bil, Rasik bil, Batikata Bil & raichangmari bil. In Bengali, ‘bil’ means large water body. 

Watch Tower at Rasikbil

The main migratory birds found in this wet land are Lesser Whistling Teal, Common Teal, Cotton Teal, Dapchick, Bronze winged Jacana, Pheasant Tailed Janacana, Shoveler, Barheaded goose, White Eyed Poacher etc. Except this a lot of other aquatic birds like small & large Cormorant, four spp. of Kingfisher, open bill storks etc. are found. The area of water dobby complex is 178 hec. The whole area comes under protected forest & managed by Coochbehar Forest Division. In January 2009, a beautiful watch tower of 70 feet height was constructed by Coochbehar Forest Division. 

Birds in Rasikbil
Spotted Deer

There is a mini zoo at Rasikbil; the zoo is recognised by Central Zoo Authority, Govt. of India. There are Tortoise, Gharial, Leopard, Spotted deer, Peafowl and other birds in the zoo. In 2009, Coochbehar Division in collaboration with Zoological Survey of India conducted bird census in the wetland complex, 66 species of birds were recorded.

Image courtesy:  https://www.google.co.in/search?q=cooch+behar+photos&hl