Saturday, March 31, 2012

Yoga for life . Blog marathon post 9.



Recently, when I went to  the Delhi International airport, the mesmerizing sculpture (figures sculpted by Nikhil Bhandari)  of the twelve poses in 'Surya namaskar', caught my eye. I stood and stared at it for some time.  It was brilliant!

Yoga and I go back a long way. It was a subject taught in my school and I am now grateful for this treasure of a foundation, laid in my early years. I was in Class seven when I was first chosen to be a part of the team for 'Yoga demonstrations' at various locations and associations, which my 'Yoga sir' was associated with.  I was probably chosen as I was pencil thin as a kid, with an extremely flexible body and could master the poses quite perfectly in no time.

Today 28 years later, my love affair with Yoga still continues. I swear by yoga. It is truly the best gift you can give your body. I am proud that I can still do all the asanas (the yoga poses) which I could do when I was 12! That is the magic of yoga. It is better than any anti-aging cream. It is also better than any magic pill that promises to make you slim or cure all your illnesses.

The thing is it is very important to find a good, qualified instructor first. I see all kinds of exorbitant amounts charged in the name of  various fancy tags attached with the word 'yoga'. Let me tell you, just practising simple yoga will give you the same benefits, provided you do it right. There are a few yoga institutes in India where accommodation is very basic and the ashrams follow certain patterns and rules. There is no 'luxury' and meals are simple sattvic food. If you are keen to do a proper course in yoga, I would highly recommend learning in one of these institutes. (Svyasa in Bangalore, Kaivalyadham near Pune and Swami sivananda's yoga ashram in Kerala are some of the names that come immediately to the mind). In the last one, you can even take a 'yoga vacation' to get a feel of it.

Many people ask me what poses I do when I practise my yoga. I do the surya namaskars (at least a minimum of ten), Paschimottrasana, Halasan, Sarvangasa, Chakrasana, Sethu bandasan, Ushtrasana, Bhujangasana to name a few.(Please forgive the spelling. I am typing from memory)

But the thing is, what works for me might be different from what your body needs. An excellent book I would recommend is Payal Tiwari's 'From XL to XS' which gives you a good idea on what it is all about. I read today that one round of surya-namskar can give same effects as a 30 minute cardio.
I do not know how much the above statement has been verified, but I do know that they burn calories a lot.

"Embrace and love your body. It is the most amazing thing you will ever own." said a quote I found on the net.

I can't agree more!
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If you like my blog, you might enjoy my books :) Grab them here. (You don't need a credit card. You can pay cash on delivery) or if you are an Amazon Fan, you can grab them here
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Friday, March 30, 2012

Pictures from a wonderful trip. Blog marathon post 8

Place: Bentota and Colombo, Srilanka.
Year: 2011
Month: December
Occasion: My birthday

Discovered the beauty of mangroves for the first time in my life.


And the wonderfully colourful masks.


A kitten which  was smitten.








So smitten that it even followed me everywhere as soon as it woke up. I was so tempted to smuggle it back to India!




And beautiful baby turtles in a turtle hatchery.


Lots of happy memories like the Buddhist temple we visited, the thousands of fish which nibbled at my feet, the beaches, the shopping and the really chilled out feeling.


A beautiful place for a vacation (although I must say it was a LOT like Kerala)

For Information about Srilanka and holidays there click here.
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If you like my blog, you might enjoy my books :) Grab them here. (You don't need a credit card. You can pay cash on delivery) or if you are an Amazon Fan, you can grab them here
 And you can interact with me on my FB page. I almost always reply :)




Thursday, March 29, 2012

A few more cards I made. Blog marathon post 7

A big thank you to all of you who left comments on the previous posts, especially the post about mothers and daughters. Each and every comment is read and cherished and appreciated.
Apologies, I have not been able to reply individually, because of the blog-marathon i am currently doing.
(Forgivable, right, considering you get a new post every single day? thank you--I know you're sweet that way :) )

Today I am sharing with you pictures of cards I made. You can check out the whole album here.
I had made so many and now they are all sold! A lot of people messaged me on FB asking if I would sell the cards. Handmade cards sell anywhere between Rs.100--Rs.250/- I think handmade cards are anyday better than the usual ready-made, mass produced, run of the mill cards.

There is a LOT of effort which goes into making cards. For the cards I make, the accessories are  all sourced from my various travels. Whenever I see a nice thing which I can use for card making, I buy it and add it to my supplies.

Here are the pictures of the recent ones I made. (all sold)

 This card seemed apt for that friend who loves cats!


 I have used a shiny blue sparkling paper as a background to set off the red and white quilled roses.

 A student bought this card as a gift for her teacher.


Another student bought this for his friend. He was very keen to have this one.

I like the fairy in this one. Adds magic to the card, don't you think?


 And I like the quilled roses in this one. Once you learn how to quill those roses, it becomes addictive! I can't seem to stop making them now!


 This was a card made fairly quickly--just a cheerful peppy card which one can send for no occasion.

For me making cards is a great way to de-stress. Usually I make one card a day. A portrait I make takes many hours and is spread over days. But with cards, there is instant gratification!

Any of you make cards as well?
If so leave me links, would love to see them!
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If you like my blog, you might enjoy my books :) Grab them here. (You don't need a credit card. You can pay cash on delivery) or if you are an Amazon Fan, you can grab them here
 And you can interact with me on my FB page. I almost always reply :)





Wednesday, March 28, 2012

On mothers and daughters and BFFs. Blog marathon post 6.

My daughter is at an age which is wonderful. (She will be eleven soon). She is at a stage where she is not a baby anymore and does not need her mother all the time. Yet she is not old enough to not need me at all. That feels good, actually.

She is my hair stylist and fashion consultant. These days we go out together,just she and me--Girlie time. We really have a ball. We check out clothes, shoes and people. We joke and laugh. I love her chuckles, her little snippets of wise observation, her crystal clear logic and her fantastic sense of humour. I see a lot of myself in her, yet she is so different from me.


 She loves her art, just like me, and this is a picture she recently made. Her individuality and style is so darn different from mine, and yet I see in her that same angst I felt as a child, when a picture I created did not match up to the expectations inside my head.

 Her BEEEEEEESSST friend is Nikita.
The other day she came upto me and said she wants to gift Nikita something really unique, something that "you do not get anywhere, even if you pay a million rupees."

We put our head together and finally decided to create a fridge  magnet. My daughter wanted roses on it.  "Maaa Nikita will looooooove the roses," she said with great  joy and longing, her eyes shining at the prospect of making something so beautiful for her best friend.

We tried many times, to make roses out of polymer clay. We made beautiful roses but when we tried to stick them on the base, they went out of shape. We tried many times but were unsuccessful each time.
My daughter's face fell.  I tried suggesting that we could make something else instead of a rose. But no, said my daughter. Roses it had to be and nothing else.

Of course, I could not disappoint her.  So I quilled a paper rose. And then added some satin ones as well. She wanted  to write 'Purvi Nikita BFF' (best friends forever) on the magnet.

When my daughter went for her shower, I quickly created this little magnet. And  I made a little bag to put it in and gift it to her friend.



When she saw it she let out a ear-shattering scream in pure delight. She was overjoyed.
"Ooooh mummy, you are the BESTEST mom in the world," she said and hugged me real tight.

Her friend Nikita was over the moon, to receive such a gift.

If only my daughter knew--I would make a million more magnets for her.
I really would.

After all, she is my BFF but it will take a while for her to know it yet :)

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If you like my blog, you might enjoy my books :) Grab them here. (You don't need a credit card. You can pay cash on delivery) or if you are an Amazon Fan, you can grab them here
 And you can interact with me on my FB page. I almost always reply :)




Tuesday, March 27, 2012

On fickle friendships and people who walk away. Blog marathon post 5

Madhuri and me

A friend of mine and fellow Author Madhuri Banerjee (who wrote 'Losing my virginity and other dumb ideas') wrote this very thought provoking post on friendships in her blog. Interestingly, I had the exact same experience as Madhuri, for almost all of my book launches.

A lot of my fans and readers attended my launches (and I was very happy they did). But the people I considered 'my  very good friends' did not. And it wasn't as though I had not communicated to them how much having them there means to me, and it wasn't as though they had an extremely pressing reason for not attending. There were absolutely no excuses given too nor a call or a text asking how the launches went. They were at home, they chose not to attend as they felt it was 'too much of a bother'.

Mayank and me at the Pune launch




Some of my good friends did make an extra effort to attend and I felt grateful for their presence. (One friend came all the way from Chennai to attend my Bangalore launch, and another drove all the way from Mumbai to attend my Pune Launch).





It made me wonder for a long time, if I am judging a friendship based on one particular incident of attending or not attending an event, that meant the world to me.

I thought a lot,  drew some conclusions, made some decisions and moved on. Honestly that is all one can do.

You cannot predict how a person will behave tomorrow. My rock-solid dependable pals are truly very few--ones I can count on my finger tips.

That is why when Madhuri says
"It’s a strange universe of fickle friendships."
and

"  Friends moved on. New people through twitter came into my life. They were tweeple. They weren’t friends. Old friends found new friends. Then I was alone. I wondered if I had “invested” enough? Hadn’t I done what was needed to rely on them? Or was it another expectation from life that was being tested for me to understand that one cannot have ANY expectation. That maybe “friends” are like the weather. You can’t predict when they’ll be sunny and when they’ll be moody."
I tend to agree one hundred percent.


Strangely, one of my earliest posts  written in 2006, was about friends walking away when I needed them the most.  I was not a published author then. I was merely a hurt, shattered soul, trying to find some solace. (read the said post for a brilliant  piece of writing on people in your lives for a reason, season or lifetime, by Brian Chalker)

Today I seek the same answers, when I am at a great point in my career. (three books behind me, all best-sellers, working on fourth)

Why do people behave the way they do? It is because they have their reasons which make sense and seem fair to them, inside their heads.

You cannot change that. You cannot make someone stay in a friendship if they want to leave.

And today I can say with confidence (and perhaps a certain amount of pride)  that life is really too short to bother about the ones that left. What matters are the ones that are in your life, at this moment.

You can do nothing if people change.

All you can do is make new friendships, or hope like hell that your old rock-solid dependable ones, stay just so.

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If you like my blog, you might enjoy my books :) Grab them here. (You don't need a credit card. You can pay cash on delivery) or if you are an Amazon Fan, you can grab them here
 And you can interact with me on my FB page. I almost always reply :)

Monday, March 26, 2012

5 instant pick-me-ups. Blog marathon post 4

It isn't easy, this modern life.
Deadlines, E-mail messages that have to be replied to immediately, meetings, travel, work-pressure, things on the home-front, kids, daily chores and a fifty things that are unaccounted for.
It is only natural to feel bogged down, exhausted and unfocussed.

How does one keep one's spirits high in this daily hustle and bustle? Here are five instant pick-me-ups that work for me every single time. And they aren't too hard to do either.


1. Music

 Billy Joel had said "I think music in itself is healing. It's an explosive expression of humanity. It's something we are all touched by. No matter what culture we're from, everyone loves music." I can't agree more. I think what happens is that we listen to music as a 'background' track. What we should instead do is take five minutes out. Go to a place where you will not be disturbed. Plug in your ear-phones and close your eyes and  LISTEN to that one song that speaks to your soul.
I did that this morning and it worked for me. Here is the song I listened to:

(It is pure magic, the violin at the beginning. Do hear)





2. Breathe deeply

 Most of us in our daily lives do not breathe right. Each of the cells in our body require more oxygen than we are currently providing them. So breathe deeply. To the count of ten. You will be surprised how much this very simple thing works as a 'pick-me-up'. Try it!

3. Drink green tea

For me, green tea works as a huge de-stressing thing. I like to sip my green tea (you just have to dunk in the tea bag in a cup of hot water. You can do it even if you are working. You just need to keep some green tea-bags in your desk). Do not add sugar or milk. It may feel odd in the beginning if you are not used to it, but it will grow on you. And it is a great anti-oxidant and good for losing weight too! In ancient china, a book was written more than 4000 years ago which extolled the use of green tea for " positive effect on the five vital organs, especially the heart. The book discusses tea's medicinal qualities, which include easing the effects of alcohol , curing blotchiness, quenching thirst, eliminating indigestion, preventing fatigue, and improving brain function. "( quoted from the wiki). If it worked then, it works now! I do not know about modern claims and tests, but I know for a fact that green tea does help me calm down.

4. Go for a short walk:

 If your office has a landscaped space, take a break. Go for a short walk. Notice the greenery, Notice things around you. Try to find three beautiful things. Take a picture of them! Capture the moment. This little break tricks your brain into activating that part of it, not used when you are at work. This can work if you work from home too.

5.Look into the mirror and give a WIDE smile to yourself:

Make sure no-one is around when you do it! Look into the mirror and meet your own eyes. Tell yourself that you are awesome! Long time back I had watched the video of a little girl do this exercise. It was amazing what she did without the slightest bit of hesitation or self-consciousness! (I do not remember where I saw it.(I tried searching for it but could not find it. If any of you know what I am talking about, please do share the link with me). Yes, you ARE awesome and you deserve a smile!Go ahead and reward yourself--give an extra large smile..Like this:



There---you are smiling too aren't you?
trust me when I say that smiling is infectious :).
Whatever it is that is bothering you, this too shall pass!

So here you have it--my five instant pick-me-ups. Simple but really effective.They always work for me.
Try them and tell me if they work for you too.

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If you like my blog, you might enjoy my books :) Grab them here. (You don't need a credit card. You can pay cash on delivery) or if you are an Amazon Fan, you can grab them here
 And you can interact with me on my FB page. I almost always reply :)



Sunday, March 25, 2012

Snapshost from my Garden. Blog marathon Post 3.

If you have joined me just now, this is a series of a blog marathon that I am doing. the first post was about making a portrait and what goes into it.
The second asked "Are you in a drift mode?"

This is the third. I am sharing some snap shots from my garden. Gardening is something that gives me immense joy. It is indeed amazing to grow something so magnificent and watch it bloom. Such beauty in flowers! I can spend hours in my garden.

To grow any plant, you really need just good soil, a container, some manure and daily watering. Even if you live in a flat or an apartment, you can grow them in pots. They instantly transform the place and add magic to it. If you live in India, all you have to do is drive to the local nursery, get a few plants and then call your local 'maali' who will happily re-pot them for you. Make an arrangement with him to add manure and loosen the soil, once in fifteen days or so. All you will have to do is water the plants on a daily basis. Not too hard really, is it?

Here are pictures of my favourite blooms from my garden.

 This is a creeper that goes up my white picket fence. White and yellow. Tranquility!


 I really like this one too.

 And this :) There are about 10-12 of them right now in my garden.


 Pretty, isn't it?


And this one here seems to be telling me, "come on and dance and enjoy life!" So colourful!

The thing about plants--you love them and they love you back.
The best part--they bloom! :)
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If you like my blog, you might enjoy my books :) Grab them here. or if you are an Amazon Fan, you can grab them here
 And you can interact with me on my FB page. I almost always reply :)





Saturday, March 24, 2012

Are you in 'drift mode'? Post 2. Blog marathon.




Apologies if you have come here looking for a post to read. This will soon appear in my book  which will be like a sequel to  '34 Bubblegums and Candies'. I had to remove it as making it available online would be very unfair to my publishers who have placed so much trust in me. A heartfelt thanks for your support and understanding. Thanks for continuing to read what I write.

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If you like my blog, you might enjoy my books :) Grab them here. or if you are an Amazon Fan, you can grab them here
 And you can interact with me on my FB page. I almost always reply :)

Friday, March 23, 2012

Blog marathon once more. Post 1--a portrait of a good friend.

Okay folks--Going by the huge encouragement  I have got on FB as well as twitter, where I asked if I should do a blog marathon again (have done it for three consecutive years now--2009, 2010 and once  and  2011), I have decided to take the plunge and do my fourth now, starting today.
Wheeeeeeeeee :)

So starting today, for the next 30 days, this blog will be updated daily! :) On some days, when I am too tired to write a new post, or if I (or you!) feel bored hearing the sound of my own words,there might be guest posts by some interesting people. Some days, there might be just a picture that I might want to share with you and sometimes maybe even an interesting video I found or a dish I cooked.

Either ways I promise you  all good stuff :) Not 'filler stuff' written to just make a post. (Readers who have followed my blog marathons do know that).

It would be great if you could join me on this journey by leaving me a comment, just so I know you hear me. I might not be able to reply individually like I do for all my posts, but I will try. And definitely will be looking forward to reading what you have to say as comments do matter to a blogger.

My first post is a portrait of a very good friend Ajay, that I completed yesterday. He was so pleased with it, that he has made it his display picture on his FB as well as BBM :)

The portrait took me about 14 hours to complete.(I did it over three days, not at a stretch)


When I put this up on FB, a few people  who do not know that I do portraits,commented asking which software I use! Some asked how I do it. So I thought would put up these early pictures, which explain how this portrait developed.


The first step to a portrait is an accurate line drawing. You should not start shading until you are absolutely convinced that the line drawing is correct. Even the smallest millimeter can make a huge difference in the final look of the portrait. So you have to take measurements and see that the outline is PERFECT--only then can you hope for a good resemblance. A mistake many beginners make is that they start shading straight away even when the proportions are wrong.Then they wonder why there is no resemblance to the subject in the finished portrait.

 When I make the line drawing I also mark the light and dark areas. I use a very very light pencil (2H) so that the lines do not show in the final portrait. I also use masking tape in the side to hold my work in place, on to the drawing board.


Some people like to do the eyes first. I started with the hair. The hair took a LOT of work, as it has to be built up layer by layer. I prefer doing the hair and eyes first, because these two areas are my 'darkest darks'. All other tones will be in comparison to these darks. In pencil portraits, there are many shades of gray and you have to very observant to see which shade of gray brings out the light, and how dark a shading should be for a realistic effect.

As you can see, there is beginning to be a likeness in the picture above, but still there is a long way to go.

I usually play music when I do my art. When I was making this one, the music that was playing was maula mere maula, Snow patrol's Chasing cars and Aerosmith's "I don't wanna miss a thing"
(click on links to listen to the songs)

After I made the eyes and hair, I went on to the lips and other parts. I had to lift off, smudge, blend, lift off , smudge, blend (techniques in pencil portraits) endlessly till I was satisfied.

Making a portrait as you can see is a lot of hard work.

But oh the joy!! :)

So there--for the first post of this blog marathon, you got three nice songs to listen to, apart from knowing how a pencil portrait is developed. Wasn't that interesting?

Good night folks! See you tomorrow.  :)

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If you like my blog, you might enjoy my books :) Grab them here. or if you are an Amazon Fan, you can grab them here
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Wednesday, March 21, 2012

A gift for someone you love :)



This is a pencil portrait (it is different from a sketch) I completed on Sunday. It took me about twelve hours of work. I am surprised when people who have read my books, tell me that they did not know I  also paint and make portraits.I do indeed accept portrait commissions, and am currently working on a commission, apart from writing my fourth ninth book.

Most people who receive a portrait of a loved one as a gift are indeed delighted beyond measure, and the picture becomes a treasured possession.
This is what Swati (one of my first portrait commissions) had said

" Hey Preeti
Once again thanks so much for making this the best birthday gift I've ever given my husband. The look of pure joy on his face when he unwrapped the portrait will be one of my most treasured memories :).
Hoping you get lots more commissions :).
I really liked the way you were so involved in the whole process, even messaging me on his birthday and asking how he liked the gift. It's so good to see someone put so much into something they do - not take it as just another job.

-Swati "




For me, art is a passion apart from my writing. I can paint and write poems only when something has deeply moved me. My art, like for most artists, is an expression of my innermost emotions. That is the reason I never explain my pictures. The viewer is free to interpret it as they like.

Some months back I had written this post where Suma(who blogs at aalochaney)  had said about my portriats:


"I love it!!!!! all three of them for different reasons :)  unrelated, but just got reminded of this:
  I have an artist friend here and she was cribbing that she gets upset because people think that they can get freebies from her, or shortchange her, they don't realise how much (emotionally sometimes) has gone into each and every artwork."

I want to add that this is exactly how I feel too. There is a LOT which has gone into my pictures emotionally. No amount of money can  really compensate that.  For me, my paintings are like bits of my soul, really. That is how strongly I feel about my pictures (no matter what others think of them). I too, like Suma's friend, used to  feel very upset and irritated when people ask me for freebies and ask me to 'make a painting for me na' so casually.
 Most people do not understand that for an artist or an artistic soul, a painting is a gift from the heart. If you  really and badly want a picture then please honour that artist by acknowledging that and  paying the price they demand.

And yes,  I do accept pencil portrait commissions.  A lot of people ask  about my Portraits. With the kind of questions I have been asked, I realised that many have doubts as to what portrait commissioning is. (It simply means you are paying an artist to create a work of art, as specified by you) Also, many are confused between a quick sketch, a caricature and a hand drawn pencil portrait.

You find sketching booths in malls which give you 'portraits' within a few minutes. It is basically a photograph clicked and digitally altered by a program to make it appear like a portrait. (There is no talent, no time and no art involved here). You could easily do this with something like Picassa or photoshop.


When I make portraits, I use the materials of the highest professional quality. The portraits I make are  on  super smooth 100% acid free Bristol board  paper, sourced from UK and the finished picture,would be sprayed with an Artists fixative to prevent smudging.It would retain its freshness for centuries. It can be shipped anywhere in the world, please allow time for shipping.

I need  fifteen days time from date of placing the order for completion. My charges for a portrait start at 15K upwards. The shipping costs would be additional. You would need to pay 25% of the amount on placing the order, and the rest on completion, after which the picture will be shipped. The rates are non-negotiable. ( I specify this as some people mail me  and bargain with me, asking me to reduce the prices!  I guess they do not know that they are commissioning  a portrait, not buying vegetables!)


A hand drawn pencil portrait takes me at  the very  least a whole day to complete. The finished result is a lifelike resemblance and is very realistic. (Unlike a caricature or a 'cartoon' ). The portrait is entirely hand-drawn and more than 400 measurements are taken painstakingly to achieve a very good likeness.

I need high resolution photo (at least 1 MB) clicked in natural sunlight. Higher the resolution, better the portrait! The reference photo is very important, and I will help you choose a good reference photo. I would not be able to accept commissions from low quality photographs or photos clicked with a flash.

To see my portfolio, please go here.

If you like my work and want to gift a portrait to that someone special, then you can mail me on ps@preetishenoy.com to know whether or not I can currently  accept your commission.
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If you like my blog, you might enjoy my books :) Grab them here. or if you are an Amazon Fan, you can grab them here
 And you can interact with me on my FB page. I almost always reply :)



Tuesday, March 20, 2012

The candle and the flame

Painting by Preeti Shenoy. Acrylic on paper. size: 10"x7"



Come dance with me
Said the Candle to the flame
I so badly want to, but I can’t
And I am playing no game.

Why not, the candle wanted to know
Everybody should be able to dance if they wanted to.
Ah my friend, if only life was so simple
There are rules to be followed, through and through.

All you need is a bit of a will
A little imagination and lot of desire
I will make your wishes come true,
And you will fly, you will soar higher.

So the flame stepped out
Gingerly at first, not used to the candle
But oh he was such a gentleman
Her fears he knew how to handle.

She slowly let go
As he led her gently on
And as she learnt to trust
She found her fears were slowly gone.


And so they danced, a  dance of wild abandon,
Even the moonlight  seemed to fade
The whole night, ablaze with passion
They were inseparable and the flame now unafraid.

© 2012 Preeti Shenoy

For more poems click here. Some poems have already appeared in print. Kindly do not reproduce without permission.
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PS: I made the painting today and then wrote the poem, just now.

If you like my writing, you might enjoy my books :) Grab them here. or if you are an Amazon Fan, you can grab them here
 And you can interact with me on my FB page. I almost always reply :)


Friday, March 16, 2012

A nice Interview in Youth Diaries

Youth Diaries published an interview with me which I really enjoyed doing. It was fun! They asked me such nice questions!

Sunaina who interviewed me said  on her FB "A writer, a poet, an artist, a mother of two kids-she is an epitome of beauty with brains!! :-)
And I am so glad that I got to interview her!! :-D"


How sweet is that?! :)


Here is the link to the Interview:
http://youthdiaries.in/an-interview-with-preeti-shenoy/


And I am disabling comments on this post--so it saves you the trouble of commenting on two posts.


Do leave your comments there :)
Would love (as always) to hear what you have to say :)

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Pssst:

If you like my writing, you might enjoy my books :) Grab them here. or if you are an Amazon Fan, you can grab them here
 And you can interact with me on my FB page. I almost always reply :)

Thursday, March 15, 2012

A fun meme about a lot of stuff :)

Hi there,
Its a long time since I did a 'Fun meme'. I have been doing such a lot of 'serious' writing these days (have already started working on my fourth book!) that I wanted to just do something on my blog which was fun.

So here is a meme from Sunday Stealing which appealed to me..I am doing only one part of it (It was in three parts).

1) Do you tend to hold grudges against people who have done you wrong?
Sadly yes  but only if I was extremely hurt. I do want to let go. Holding a grudge is like harboring poison in your soul. It's truly horrible to hold a grudge.

2) What is your astrological sign?

Saggitarius

3) Do you save money for anything? What?
Used to save when I was a student. I don't consciously 'save' anymore. Thank Lord.


4) What's the last thing you purchased?
Some superb DK books for my children from Pageturner Bangalore. (They have a good collection for kids)

5) Have you ever had a relationship that you realized was lust not love?
Of course! :) Don't tell satish ;-) :D

6) In a relationship?
Yes! :) Sweet Bliss! :)

7) How many relationships have you had?
Hahahaha.. Far too many to list :P Really!

8) What do you want to tell us about your day?

I learnt an important lesson today. To completely ignore those that attack you senselessly, out of jealousy mostly. Also learnt how important it is to not always take another person's advice and to listen to your gut feel.

9) Where were you yesterday?
Was at home. Did not step out yesterday.

10) Is there anything interesting within 10 feet of you?

Many things really. Books, a little wooden trinket box that my daughter made for me, my BB Bold 9900, My Ferrari cap, my silver ear rings, a bookmark I made, to name a few.

11) Are you wearing socks right now?
I am in India right now and it is summer. Need I say more?

12) What's your favorite animal?

My Dobe.



13) What is your secret weapon to get someone to like you?

Tell them I do realistic portraits and tell them a detail about themselves which I noticed. I also  slip in that I am a best-selling author. :P :D


14) Where is your best friend?
Norwich, UK


15) How did you end your last relationship end?

I did not end it. I dazzled him so much with my brilliance that he felt so inadequate and faded away. *shrug* what can I do?!  :D

16) What is your heritage?
This amazing country I am born into. Truly proud  to be Indian.

17) What were you doing last night at 12 AM?

Finishing some unfinished business. It's still unfinished. Sigh.

18) What's new?

I have been asked to write a serialised fiction by one of India's leading mags. Details soon!

19) What is the key to seduction?

Eye contact, Interesting conversation, Flirting, Wit, An awesomely intimate meal.
And if all of it does not work, try subliminal suggestions ;-)

20) What was the weirdest thing that happened to you this week?

My dog got invited to a doggie's birthday party! Not kidding. How weird is that?! :)
She did enjoy herself though. She even wore a bow! Not kidding :) Here is a pic:




21) You are walking down the street on your way to work. There is a dog drowning in the canal on the side of the street. Your boss has told you if you are late one more time you get fired. What do you do?

Of course I will save the dog. Jobs will come again. A dog's life will not. And if my boss objects when I turn up dripping wet in the office, I would push him/her into the canal as well..and tie a stone too around their neck so they can't emerge :D

22) You are at the doctor’s office and she has just informed you that you have approximately one month to live. a) Do you tell anyone/everyone you are going to die? b) What do you do with your remaining days? c) Would you be afraid?

a) Of course I would tell everyone.I would announce it on my blog, FB, Twitter, Tumblr, Pinterest--everywhere!  I would make the best of it, write a book about 'my last 30 days', get TV deals, sell movie rights etc :) Am anyway dying--might make the best of it.
b) Fulfill every wild fantasy I have ever had.
c) No--have never been afraid of dying.

23) You can only have one of these things: trust or love.
 Love ,always :) Who needs trust when you love with all your heart! :)

24) What's a song that always makes you happy when you hear it?

My English friends might want to watch this :) I always dance when I hear this :)




25) Who has your cell phone number (other than family)?

Many of my friends and a few people who I would rather have out of my life.

If you liked the meme, you can do it too! :) I had fun :)
Stay positive!
Love
Preeti
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Psst:

 If you like my writing, you might enjoy my books :) Grab them here. or if you are an Amazon Fan, you can grab them here
 And you can interact with me on my FB page. I almost always reply :)

Sunday, March 11, 2012

5 ways to find happiness



Photobucket
The other day a friend and I were talking.
She said "All I want is to be happy." 
"And what would make you really happy?" I asked.
She thought for two minutes and then discovered she really did not know!
"Shopping? Watching a movie? Partying? What is it?" I persisted. Ever since I have turned into a full time author, the motivation behind people's inclination  to do (or not do) certain things intrigue me more than ever before.

 She said that all of it was important, but the happiness those things gave her were only temporary. "But happiness indeed is a temporary emotion," I said, the quasi-philosophical streak in me, making its guest appearance, sensing an opportune moment. We concluded that we can be content even if we cannot be happy all the time. And a positive attitude really adds spark to life.

 Later, when I thought about it, I felt that people by nature are either pooh-bears, Eeyores or Tiggers :) If you do not know who they are, I suggest you read winnie-the-pooh :P :)

And if you want to know which one you are, I suggest you take this personality quiz.

I was almost certain that I was a Tigger, but it turns out I am actually a pooh bear. (It's not that one is better than the other. It is just what your nature is)

Irrespective of whether you are a Tigger or a Pooh-bear, there are definitely a few things we can do to lead a more fulfilling, happy life.

1.Make time for your hobbies:
 Just as physical exercise is a tonic for the body, hobbies are indeed 'necessary medicine' for a stressed out mind. It clears fatigue, leaves you in a calmer state of mind and who knows it can even be an alternate career! Really.  Not kidding.


2.Surround yourself with happy, positive people:

Some people do leave us feeling great. It is wonderful to be around people whose outlook is cheery and upbeat. Almost all of us can think of that one person, talking to whom instantly lifts our spirits. Associate with more such people and seek their company.

 While at workplace, we cannot really control who we have to deal with, we can indeed focus on our reaction towards the 'grouches'. Give them a warm smile--especially if they do not deserve it. (Yeah, hard I know, when all you feel like doing is smashing that file on their heads).  But a smile truly helps.




3. Audit your physical surroundings:

Clutter is something that makes me unhappy. I like neat happy spaces. I love plants and flowers. I love books. I love Art. So I have done up my home accordingly.

I  also have a private sanctuary in my home (a small room) which is done up exactly the way I want. It has many paintings gifted by my friend Niall (who is an amazing Artist) 

 and I TREASURE one specific original piece of art which he gifted me, which took him more than 150 hours to make.
It also has a paintings by other artist friends who gifted me their original work , apart from a few other personal things which make me happy. Needless to say, this room also houses my beloved antique writing desk and all my art stuff, apart from a comfy couch which opens out to become a cozy bed. The entire room is done is calming shades of blue. This room is my sacred space and it is solely mine. Create a space for yourself which is your alone. It is an investment for your happiness.

4.Invest in your health:

Health is indeed wealth. Invest in it. Hard work, I know but it will pay rich dividends in later life. When I think about my friends in their sixties and seventies who have energy levels which is more than people half their age have, I am so motivated to be like them. A common thing they all have--they are very conscious of their physical health and are all really fit.
Your body is a temple which houses your soul. (sorry if that is profound). Take care of it and it will serve you well.




5.Let Go:

Friend walked away? Let go. (but analyse and see what went wrong)
Spouse picked a fight with your parents? Let go. (but talk it over when you are both calmer)
Children not listening to you? Let go. (Every battle need not be won)
Not recognised at work? Let go.  (but look at other options)

The basic thing I am trying to say is we can only do so much and there is only that much which is in our control really.
The faster we accept that and faster we let go, happier we will be.

Think about it!

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ps: My third book 'Tea for two and a piece of cake' is number two on Asian Age top selling fiction list.


Sunday, March 04, 2012

Paper quilled cards.

It was a few months ago that I discovered the art of paper quilling. I read up a lot about it on the Internet and  I have written a post about it and also posted some pictures of cards that I made here. and some more that I made here.  

Of course, one gets better with practice. I find  paper-quilling an excellent way to de-stress. When I sit down to quill, I forget everything!

What you need for paper quilling is just some quilling paper, glue, a quilling stick (not essential--you can just start off by rolling it around a tooth pick too) and loads of patience. It is extremely  addictive, once you get the hang of it.

 I can sit for hours, creating new designs. Here are some cards I made  over the last two days. (and I am quite pleased with them) .They are all my own designs.



I used foam sheets (you can buy them in a shop which sells craft supplies) for the Pig's face as well as for the grass and the butterfly. I think it has combined well with the paper quilling on the body.





I quite liked how this one turned out too. I used a dual colour quilling strip (pink and white) for the flower. I have a lot of craft supplies from UK (as I used to live there) . But I bought all my quilling stuff from India. You can but the quilling strips in varied colours and various thickness at a store like Staples or William Penn.




I  tried  paper quilled roses for the first time today, from a tutorial I found on the Internet. Am delighted with the results! :)



And I had to make one more. I tried a minimalist  approach when I made this one and I really like the  sense of calmness this one seems to give out.

So here I am--a  less stressed happy person--all thanks to a new hobby I took up.

Like my cards? :) 
Go ahead--use my comment box :)
Thank you!
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