16 May 2016

My Ideal Yatra to Kerala- God’s Own Country !

Posted by Shravan
Someone has very well said- To travel is to take a journey into yourself.” Travelling teaches you a lot of things. Regular readers of this blog already know that I am a travel bluff . I love travelling to new places and destinations and I have always got hold of every opportunity that comes my way.

I had one week break from my regular work. So I thought of utilising this time in a better way (instead of just lazing around) and doing a short trip to any of the states which I had not visited before. After a brief thought,I short listed with Kerala. Kerala had been on my mind since long. Kerala, as we all know, is said to be God’s Own Country. The Kerala backwaters, beaches and the seafood were a major attraction for me. So having decided the destination, I started planning my journey.

Image Source: Pixabay

First thing was booking the flight tickets. I always book air tickets online. It’s much convenient than visiting travel agents/airline offices and you save considerable amount of money as well. I found the cheapest air fare at Yatra. It always has the best offers and lowest prices. I booked Indigo Airlines flight to Kerala. My friend (a popular travel blogger) helped me prepare a plan for my trip and on his recommendation, I even booked hotel rooms online.

On the particular day. I boarded Indigo airlines flight from Mumbai and reached Kerala. I had already prepared a list of places which I intended to visit. These included a combination of everything- the beautiful beaches of Kovalam and Varkala, the hill station ‘Munnar’ , backwaters of Alleppey and Kochi etc and a few other places. I visited these places one by one and it was really a treat to the mind and the soul. I also indulged in a bit of shopping. I bought some souvenirs to take back with me as well as some fresh spices.

The best part was the food which was just awesome. I tried a variety of seafood and other non-vegetarian dishes prawns curry, fish wrapped and fried in banana leaf, fish molee, chicken stir fry and a lot more. If you love seafood lover like me, I’ll say Kerala is heaven for you! Seafood is available here at reasonable prices and you can enjoy to the fullest.

There are hundreds of places worth visiting in Kerala. Due to time constraint, I had to drop my plans of visiting a few more places which were worth visiting. All I can say is, if you haven’t visited Kerala yet, you are missing a lot. Just visit Kerala and you will learn yourself why people call it God’s own country. Also, make sure you plan the trip properly and try to cover as many new places as possible.

My visit to Kerala was a very special and memorable one. I travelled to a new state, enjoyed to the fullest and most importantly, at very low budget. This is indeed my ideal yatra !!!!

Have you travelled to Kerala? How was your experience? How would you like to define your ideal yatra? Share with us by posting your valuable comments.

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24 Jan 2016

3 Fantastico People Who Changed My Life

Posted by Shravan
I have been lucky enough to meet several people throughout my life who have changed my life in some way or the other. Meeting them was a life changing experience. Some have changed my life drastically whereas some have had minor effects comparatively. In this post I will be telling you about 3 Fantastico People Who Changed My Life.

My Father

My father has always been an inspiration to me. He is my guide, mentor, philosopher and a dear friend. I really admire him a lot. Born and brought up in a low income family, he has established himself strongly without compromising on ethics. He had to face a lot of troubles during his life. However, he faced all the hurdles successfully and today he is a self made man. He has provided me with a lot of care and love. I can always expect him to be on my side whenever I face any problems or difficulties. He has had a really positive impact on my life. He is one of the fantastic people who have changed my life.

Mr. Mohan (My Maths Teacher in School)

Like many others, I hated maths throughout my school. This was until I met Mr.Mohan who was my maths teacher as well as my class teacher. He was the person who changed my perception about maths. I always thought of maths as a very complex and tough subject. I was childish & even foolish to think why at all the subject was included in the curriculum. However, when Mr.Mohan came as a teacher, things changed. He though maths in an extremely simple and lucid way. He provided personal attention to students as well. Today, I can safely claim that I have above average mathematical skills, all thanks to Mr.Mohan!

Azim Premji

There is a lot to be learnt from this gentle man. He is one of the richest people in India yet very humble and down to earth. He flies economy class and is known to eat at roadside restaurants. He is also one of the largest philanthropists in India. He is a very ethical person as well. His son was made to go through the routine process of interviews when he was about to join Wipro. I have learnt a lot of things like simplicity, humbleness, staying down to earth and a lot many other things from this wonderful person. I really owe you a lot sir!

That’s it. This is one of the 3 most fantastic guys who have changed my life drastically. Apart from these, there are several other people who have helped me and guided me throughout my life.

Share stories of fantastic people who inspired you and changed your life via comment box below. If you like this article, feel free to share it in your social circles.

This blog post is inspired by the blogging marathon hosted on IndiBlogger for the launch of the #Fantastico Zica from Tata Motors. You can apply for a test drive of the hatchback Zica today.

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My Peppy Paneer Pizza Recipe

Posted by Shravan
Pizza is one of my favourite dishes. I can eat a pizza anytime. Pizzas are filling, heavy and taste awesome as well. Everyone likes to have a pizza- right from kids to older generation. One of the favourite pizza which I like is the one having Paneer as topping. In this post, I am sharing my recipe of Paneer pizza which I am calling as Peppy Paneer Pizza. I prepare this regularly at home from time to time. It’s easy to make and is relished by everyone.

Paneer - 1 Packet (200gms)
Pizza Bases- 3 (You can buy readymade pizza bases from bakery chains. I buy them from Monginis)
Black Pepper (Powdered)- 1/2 tbsp
Salt- to taste
Pizza Sauce - 1 cup
Cheese (Mozarella is preferred) - 3/4 cup grated
Yogurt - 1 cup
Tandoori Masala -1 Packet
Capsicum - 1/2 cup cubed
Onion - 1/2 cup cubed
Oregano - 1/2 tbsp
Chilli Flakes - 1/2 tbsp


Preparing the Paneer

First, let us prepare and cook the Paneer. Mix Tandoori Masala and yogurt in a big bowl. Add Paneer cubes and mix well. Add 1 tbsp pepper powder. Add salt if required. Make sure all Paneer cubes are coated with the mixture. Avoid mixing vigorously so as to keep the Paneer cubes intact. Keep it for around 30 minutes and then gently fry the Paneer pieces on a non stick tawa till the Paneer is cooked. Take care not to cook them too much or burn them.

Making the Pizza

1. Take a pizza base. Apply pizza sauce on it generously. You can buy pizza sauce of any good brands from supermarkets. You can also make homemade pizza sauce, if you prefer.
2. Put a few Paneer cubes which have been cooked (as explained earlier) on the pizza bases coated with sauce.
3. Add a few capsicum and onion cubes on each of the pizza bases.
4. Cover the pizza with grated cheese.
5. Preheat the oven at around 180OC for 8-10mins. Place the pizzas on a rack and put them in the oven. When the cheese completely melts, take them out.
6. Sprinkle oregano powder and chilli flakes on each of the pizzas.
7. Serve with additional separate tomato ketchup, oregano, chilli flakes and a glass of juice or cold coffee, as your prefer :)

That’s it guys. This is the recipe of my special peppy Paneer pizza. Its quick, easy to make and tastes awesome. When my friends come over at my house, they ask me to always prepare this Paneer pizza. Do try it out at home and make modifications or improvisation as you feel. Don't forget to tell me whether you liked this recipe or not via your comments using the comment box below.

This blog post is inspired by the blogging marathon hosted on IndiBlogger for the launch of the #Fantastico Zica from Tata Motors. You can apply for a test drive of the hatchback Zica today.

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3 books that had an impact on my life

Posted by Shravan
The readers of this blog who know me personally are aware of the fact that I am a voracious reader. I just love reading books especially books on investing & management, self help, autobiographies and other non –fiction work. The habit of reading caught me very early in life, when I was around 9 or 10 years old. While I was in college, I used to spend as much as half of my pocket money on buying new books J

The habit of reading has been extremely beneficial to me. Books have had a very positive effect on my life. Books have opened new horizons for me, given me new ideas and taught me a lot. In this post, I will mention the top 3 books that had an impact on my life. So without wasting much time, below is the list. Note that the books are not listed in any particular order.

The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho

This book was one of the best books which shaped my life significantly. One of my very good friend (a voracious reader) recommended this book to me while I was in first year of my college. The book contains story of a shepherd boy named Santiago who has always dreams of travelling the world looking for treasure.The book has sold more than 30 million copies all over the world. If you have not read this book, I would request you to grab a copy soon and start reading it. There are a lot of lessons to be learnt from this book. On a side note, this book was my first purchase online. I bought it from Rediff Shopping J

The Story of My Experiments with Truth by Mahatma Gandhi

This is another excellent book which I have read.  I bought it from a book fair hosted in my city. I really loved the book. The book traces Mr.Gandhi’s journey right from childhood onwards. Great pains have been taken to draft the book. It’s possible to learn a lot of things from each and every chapter mentioned in this book.

MegaLiving by Robin Sharma

This is another exceptional book in personality development & self development niche. This book has excellent tips and tricks to make your life full of positivity and achieve your goals. At the end of the book, there is a life changing program eternity. The program lists a few things that everyone is supposed to do every day. I am quite confident that anyone who follows this program religiously and makes it a habit, he is bound to be successful. I have personally learnt a lot of things from this book and I can safely claim that this book has changed my life.

That’s it guys. Apart from these 3 books, there are many other books which have had an impact on my life. Share the books which changed your life via your comments.

This blog post is inspired by the blogging marathon hosted on IndiBlogger for the launch of the #Fantastico Zica from Tata Motors. You can apply for a test drive of the hatchback Zica today.

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3 Fantastico Tips to Save Extra Money Every Month

Posted by Shravan
We all know how important it is in today’s world to have adequate money and savings. It’s important to save as much as possible and invest the saved amount at the right places so that your savings grow at a healthy rate. In this article, I’ll be mentioning 3 fantasctico tips which will help you save some extra money every month.

Start Recurring Deposit Account
This is a very good way to save some fixed amount of money every month compulsorily. Once you open a recurring deposit account in your bank, you can give standing instructions to directly deduct the fixed monthly instalment from your savings account and add it to your RD account. RD helps you to save money compulsorily every month as well as get some interest on your savings. You can start a RD account in any reputed banks, co-operative societies or even post offices. Make sure you check and compare their interest rates and then make a decision.

Buy Monthly Groceries at One Go
This tip will save you considerable amount of money. You need to make a plan of all the groceries and daily essential items you require for a week or a month and buy it at one go. Advantages are many for this. Firstly, when you buy items at one go you stop spending on unnecessary things. You will also save time and money since your trips to supermarkets/malls will be reduced significantly. Best part, make use of cashback offers provided by credit card companies, mobile wallets etc. For example- Mobikwik is currently giving around 10% cashback on making payments at Big Bazaar via your mobikwik wallet. Check out such offers. This will help you save lot of money.

Reduce Electricity Expenses
All of us tend to ignore this important aspect. Electricity bills consumer a lot of money every month. Try reducing your electricity expenses. Turn off devices when not in use. Replace existing devices with energy saving ones if possible. Use LED bulbs wherever possible. They consume very less energy as compared to normal bulbs or even CFL bulbs. You can also get discounts and cashback if you pay your electricity bills online using mobile wallets like Paytm & Freecharge. Even if you save say Rs.1000-2000 every month on your electricity bills that would be great. Remember two things- drops make an ocean & every penny counts!

That’s it guys. You will already know the conventional tips to save extra money every month. I am not repeating those. However, I am 100% confident that using the 3 fantastico tips I mentioned in this post will definitely help you save money. If you are aware of any not-so-common tips to save extra money every month, share it via comment box below.

This blog post is inspired by the blogging marathon hosted on IndiBlogger for the launch of the #Fantastico Zica from Tata Motors. You can apply for a test drive of the hatchback Zica today.

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The Impact of Social Networking on Our Lives

Posted by Shravan
If we look back a few years back, we realize that there are quite a few things which things which changed the world.  It would be practically impossible to list out all these things in this post. However, one thing which has changed the world in definitely social media or social networking. There are hundreds and probably even thousands of small and big social networking sites, mobile apps etc. Some famous ones are Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Instagram etc. The list is endless. We are able to network, communicate and chat with people who miles and miles away from us. In this post we will have a look at the impact of social networking on our lives.

Today, it has become really easy to connect with our college or school batch mates or classmates which are spread across the country or rather across the globe. Without social networking, it wouldn’t be that easy. We can also get to know about various happenings across the world. Social media has also helped people put down their views and opinion publicly and share it with others. We also get to know what’s happening in our friend or family circle.
However, when we look around we see some people especially youngsters spend too much time on social sites. If we look around, we see people constantly checking out social networking sites. One the road, at the bus stops, at the dining table, everywhere. My personal opinion is that social networking sites should be used in moderation.

Brands and companies are using social media to reach out to masses. The fact that advertisement spends on social media of leading brands is a testimony to this. Also there is an exponential rise of social media marketing agencies. Social media helps people reach out to masses at fraction of cost compared to print or TV media. Due to social media it’s possible for brands to  engage in a two way conversation with the client or customer.

It’s possible to educate yourself using social networking as well. There are specialised pages, groups etc of likeminded people having interest in particular subject. You can ask questions; get your queries answered etc. You can also browse through tutorial videos; pictures etc. shared over social media which will help you enhance your knowledge.

Social media is a great source of entertainment. You can get to variety of pictures, watch movies, amazing happenings across the world etc. You can engage in a chat with your friends, relatives, colleagues etc.

Apart from these there are various other uses of social media. Indeed, Social media has created a huge impact on our lives. There are hundreds of social networking sites and apps. You just need to find your favourite site and use it for your betterment.

What’s your opinion? How do you think social networking sites have impacted you? Share via your comments.

This blog post is inspired by the blogging marathon hosted on IndiBlogger for the launch of the #Fantastico Zica from Tata Motors. You can apply for a test drive of the hatchback Zica today.

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23 Jan 2016

5 Fantastico Tips to Stay Healthy

Posted by Shravan
We all know the popular saying- “Health is Wealth”. It’s extremely necessary that we remain healthy. However, many a times it happens that we tend to ignore our health while chasing our life goals and dreams. Today our lifestyles have become pretty much unhealthy. In this post, I’ll be telling you 5 fantastico tips which will help you to stay healthy.

Stop Eating When Your Stomach Is Almost Full
This is the most important point. Human beings always tend to have too much food which in turn causes lots of strain on our stomach and in turn on our digestion system. It’s said that many diseases trace their origin to the stomach. So it’s important to keep stomach clean and as healthy as possible. Try having reasonably small portions of food and stop eating when your stomach is about 80% full
Don’t Sleep Too Much (But Have Adequate Sleep)
Adequate sleep is necessary. Most people don’t need more than 5-6 hours of sleep for healthy lifestyle. A very popular saying goes that ‘Early to bed, early to rise, makes a man, healthy, wealthy & wise’. Having too much sleep (more than what is required) makes the body lazy. Apart from this, there are several other benefits of getting up early in the morning. You make an early start of the day. You can give time for doing yoga, meditation, jogging etc. You also don’t need to hurry while going to office in the morning. Do make it a habit to get up to rise early.

Eat a Healthy Breakfast
It’s important to have a full and healthy breakfast. It’s important to have breakfast like a king. Try including all sorts of healthy stuff like milk, cereals, eggs, whole grain bread etc. Having a breakfast plan also helps. If possible, get healthy breakfast plans made by expert dietician or nutritionist so that you your breakfast provides you with all the required nutrition.

Brush and Floss Daily
It’s important to brush your teeth at least twice a day, ideally, in the mornings and at night after dinner. Also, make an effort to floss at least once a day. Use good quality toothbrush and toothpaste. Make sure you replace your old toothbrush when it becomes old and when the bristles get spoiled. Oral hygiene is an integral part of healthy lifestyle. So make sure you pay you don’t ignore it.

Do Periodic Health Checkups
It’s important to visit the doctor and get complete body checkups done at regular intervals. With these checkups, you get to know the exact status update about your health and body condition so that you can take precautions at an early stage. If there are any problems, consult a specialist so that the condition doesn’t worsen and you can start treatment at an early stage.

That's it guys. I hope you will be benefited from these tips. Share your experiences via comment box below.

This blog post is inspired by the blogging marathon hosted on IndiBlogger for the launch of the #Fantastico Zica from Tata Motors. You can apply for a test drive of the hatchback Zica today.
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