Wednesday, December 22, 2010

have you got all your gifts?

Is your shopping done? Are you completely sure you've got something for everyone on your list? What about your grand uncle who is coming for Christmas dinner along with your cousins? Hmmm, forgot about him right? How about some good old cigars with some free cigars as well. Cigars always seem to be a popular gift to receive and this year the trend looks like it will continue. There's just a couple of days left, so get going and finish off your shopping once and for all, right!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

photo: gainda phool

gainda phool

I'm back after being away for a month. It's been a really hectic time and I think I need another vacation to recover from the last one. Well, actually the last one wasn't technically a vacation, just a trip home for a wedding. And weddings are too busy a place for any kind of relaxation. But it was important for us to be there and I'm glad we did make the trip. Little E was great, charming everyone she met, even total strangers she saw at the bank while I waited to take out some jewelry to wear at the wedding. Such a joy she is!

Why suffer any more from chronic fatigue?

Did you know that over half the population of the US is fatigued at all times? The more people push themselves to 'do it all', the closer they get to being tired and worn out at all times. With the over use of drugs as anti-depressants, it is worthwhile to check out some natural remedies, that treat chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia within 5-7 days, without causing any side effects. When used for 3-6 months, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and fibromyalgia can even be completely cured and reversed.

Temp vs Humidity

Ever since E was born, I've had the baby monitor on in her room, which displays the temperature and humidity. I've never really noticed how humid it can become here till I kept track of the humidity levels and since it's important to keep the humidity in control at a certain level, I think getting a dehumidifier might be a good idea. I find that humidity is what controls the comfort level, too much and you're uncomfortable and sticky and too little, your skin starts to feel dry and tight. So, besides controlling the temperature, it's essential to control the humidity as well.

It's cardi time!

Winter is here and one of the best things about it is to take out the winter clothes and go shopping for a new sweater or two. I'm really fond of cardigan sweaters, since they are just so convenient to put on and take off, and nothing better than cuddling into a soft and slouchy cardi to chase away the winter blues, right. I looked at my closet and I found that I already have several cardigans, but still want to get a new updated look. Our winter here is so short and well, not very cold at all, but the few days or weeks that it gets cold and windy, it's really handy to have a comfy cardi to snuggle into.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

photo: sweets and ices

sweets and ices

A photo from several months back, when I was at my parents place and had time to explore the bookshelves, I found a cupboard dedicated to recipe and gardening books belonging to my grandmother, and wow, it was such a find. Some of the books were gifts and are inscribed with the name of the giver, names of people I've never heard of, of a time when she was my age or maybe even younger.

Managing performance

A new breed of companies that provide services other companies are gaining in prominence lately. These companies are raising the standard and quality of work that is being done. Firms that are in the area of management and performance evaluation of firms are especially being noticed. Longview Solutions, a business performance management firm and one of the leading providers of strategic finance software for financial institutions has been selected as one of the Top Business Performance Management (BPM) vendors for 2007 by analyst and consulting firm BPM Partners. Longview has also received 4.4 out of 5 in the annual BPM Pulse Survey, for its customer support and price/value ROI of the company's performance management platform.

adjusting to the new

Since moving to the new apt, we're getting used to the new grocery store. At first it just seemed so different than our old one, the one that I had got so accustomed to, that I used to make my shopping list according to the aisles, so I didn't have to go back and forth. Yes, I could and can picture each aisle in my mind. At our new store, it's a little different, actually a lot different. For one, I still haven't figured out if they have a pharmacy inside, I don't think they do, but then I've seen ads for phentermine which is usually found in the pharmacy section. Another difference, is that there are two central aisles instead of one, which makes it really confusing to find stuff and figure out what is where. Still I've found lots of really interesting stuff that wasn't available at the old store, so that's always nice.

to believe or not

Some things you believe right away and others you doubt no matter how much people try to convince you. Where do you sit on things like diet pills that work? With all those experts advice and research that these do work, do you believe them and would you use them or are you still doubting the experts. Often the problem is that the "expert opinion" cannot really be verified, and that's a huge holdup for a lot of people who rely on reviews to make decisions, but what about all the others who verge on the gullible and believe anyone and anything.

the joy of cards

I love sending eCards since it's just so much more convenient and the range of cards is much more exciting than a regular store, especially the animated cards. I love that you can be sure to find something innovative and interesting for all occasions. I especially like the funny cards that one sees now and the animated ones too, since they are the real reason behind the success of eCards. There are many sites that have annual memberships so that you can send unlimited cards, but I think it's better to vary the cards from different sites, since sometimes they can be quite similar. Even though it's fun to send an eCard, there is nothing like getting an actual card in the mail. And I have waiting for me to open....just a few days more though, so I can open it on the right occasion.

finding the right gift

The holiday season is almost here and with it comes the responsibility and the dread of buying gifts, not just buying gifts, but matching the right gift to the right person. Buying the right gift for the right person is an art, when you get it right, it's the simplest thing in the world to buy a present, but otherwise it's a mess. When you're looking for Personal Creations xmas gifts for him then it's best to be specific in your search, instead of buying generic ties for every male on your list. Being more specific according to someone's personal taste is the way to do it right, and to personalize a gift is the best way to create the perfect gift.

vintage or just plain old

Clothing has always been a way of expressing oneself hasn't it, and with T-shirts the concept has been far ahead of all other forms of 'expression'. These days vintage t shirts are all the rage, where ever you go and online sites are buzzing with the latest find. Best of all are new T-shirts that are designed like vintage ones, and these are the ones that sell best in the retail stores as well. Looking for vintage items will get you lots of raggedy ones as well, so watch out for the odd pieces.

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

photo: simple things

simple things

Simple things are the best, aren't they. I love noticing things like this, or sometimes creating them. I find that if I keep things simple in my photos, they come out much stronger and are more memorable. Clutter is draining in photos and in real life as well.

Hosting podcasts

Have you come across this site called that offers free podcast hosting? Podcast episodes usually take close to 30 megabytes for approximately a one hour podcast, and if it popular, you could have thousands of downloads per episode. The kind of bandwidth required for these number of downloads could generate close to a terabyte of bandwidth on a monthly basis. It's a better idea to use a hosting service to handle your downloads instead. With advantages such as unlimited bandwidth, unlimited storage, free podcast templates, and a free membership, it's a good idea to use a professional service to host your podcasts.

Share files anywhere

In this age to connecting and communicating with everyone, including people you don't personally know, I came across a site called which has come up with a software that creates a box widget for you that you can upload and share on your blog, Myspace or elsewhere. also has a flash player that streams podcasts, music, photos, videos and other types of files. The Widget comes with unlimited bandwidth and the company will also host up to 1gb of your files for free. I think its a great way to connect and share information. In the age of information and speed, it seems like a great way to get and share information.

the plumber, my new best friend

Settling into a new place is always a bit of joy as well as madness. Our old apt was in an older building and as is the case with older buildings, it had it's quirks and oddities. I thought that moving to a brand new building would solve it all, but no, we've had a good amount of visits from the plumber to fix things that shouldn't be needing fixing so soon. The problems are so silly and small, but they end up irritating me so much that I crave the simplicity of old fashioned pedestal sinks. I'm waiting for the day I see our building's resident plumber in the lift or down in the lobby, and I can tell him that I have no new problems!

is it time for new traditions?

The festival season is here already, can you believe it! Have you done all your shopping? With the way gold prices have been lately, a lot of people are getting really creative about gifts and instead of traditional gold purchases, many are opting for silver instead. Would you consider buying a couple of silver bars or is that just too different? I like the idea of adapting to the times and being open to changes or maybe even starting a new tradition, but a part of me still wants to do things the old fashioned way. Maybe starting off with silver earrings and bracelets will be a better transition!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Creative niches

I came across an interesting concept this morning. A networking and dating site specifically for artists. Now that is getting really segmented and niche, but it makes sense. Why waste time networking on a general site where you really have to hunt to find people with similar interests? It just makes sense to have a specific site like this. The Whole9 was created to give a meeting ground for all creative souls, a place where they could interact with other artists, promote their work, collaborate on projects and much more. The Whole9 differentiates itself by being a hip and upscale boutique style dating site for creative people rather than a generic run of the mill meeting ground. Users are able to create a space to display their art work and connect with other artists, giving them a new place to display their talents.

Last chance emails for event registrations

As we rely more on the web for business and recreational activities, the ways to connect are increasingly becoming more streamlined. Take registration forms for example, they used to be cumbersome and complicated at one time, but as newer systems are being created these processes are becoming not only simpler but also better managed. I find that when I'm interesting in registering for an online event which has a registration process that is too long or asks too many details, I just lose interest.

The main things I look for when registering for events on the Internet, is that the process is quick and that I receive a confirmation letter immediately, giving me all the details of the event, such as the date, time, cost due or cost paid etc. I also like having a 'remind me' option which sends an email reminding you of the event a day earlier.

A new feature on registering for events is being offered by Regonline who specializes in event organization software, that consumers who do not complete the registration process, can still be sent a sort of a 'last chance' email with special promotional deals such as price discounts or specialized customer service help. I'm not so sure I would like to receive one of these though. If I haven't completed the form, it means that I have changed my mind. Although, price is a factor is a lot of these decisions and if a discount was offered, it could tilt the balance. I think overall registration could be increased from 15-25% by sending such a letter out.

settling in

Since moving to our new home, I have been busy looking for all the basics one needs, a mini-mart that does home delivery, a post office, a laundry, a pharmacy and a beauty salon. I was quite intrigued that one of the local salons offers a body acne treatment, which is something I'd never heard off before, but quite impressed that even a small neighborhood place would offer such a specialized or niche service. I've been reading reviews of the different places on the boards, and it looks like I have a great option for hair styling and many great options for nails. If only I had the time to indulge.

different personalities

Have you ever wondered how some men go all out to be their best, while others just tend to let things be. And then there are some men who are the super achievers who are not able to let run the natural and logical course, and end up going to all lengths to be number one. Which one are you? And which do you think are most likely to go in for something like a male enhancement product and not feel even a little bit of embarrassment about it. They treat it just like any other vitamin or exercise and that's about it.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

photo: in the light

in the light

A photo from a few months back. I remember, it was taken in the afternoon, when I was desperate for some sleep, but of course little E (who was 2 and a half-3 months old then) had other ideas. But, thanks to her waking up, I got so see some lovely afternoon light streaming in between the curtains, as well as noticed the warmth of the light from this lamp.

how soon is too soon?

Ok, so while we are discussing it, lets really get to it. You've tried out some of those anti-aging creams, haven't you? And you're still in your twenties, right? Well, that's the way marketers want you to go, to start using all these products that were originally marketed for older consumers are now targeted at twenty-somethings, who are scared into thinking they are aging at warp speed and are gobbling up everything from anti-aging face washes to wrinkle eye creams. How early do you have to really start with these products? I would have thought that the later you can go without them the better you are, emotionally at least, but it's the opposite based on market research. I think very soon, you'll have acne treatment and anti-aging treatments combined in one!

What all do you insure?

Besides health and car insurance do you have any other insurance currently? These two are the most common kinds of insurance in the US, although there are lots of additional insurance segment available. Since we travel quite often, we usually get travel insurance each time we travel for the duration of our trips, which is a great way to ensure that you don't have to worry about anything that goes wrong while you're traveling. Car insurance depends on your driving record, age, type of vehicle being insured and your location. Insurance rates vary from state to state so if you live in exclusive are of Connecticut you will likely be paying higher rates for car insurance than in other areas of the state. In the same way, consumers in Maryland, need to find automobile insurance agents based on where they live which will determine their insurance rates. I had a basic Ford Escort in college with quite nominal insurance, but as soon as I got a new car I had to suddenly pay a much larger amount.

A long busy day

Today has been a super hectic day. I did everything from our weekly groceries, to shopping for socks, leggings, caps, winter dresses etc for Elisha for our upcoming trip back home, which took me from one end of Ibn Batuta mall to the other, looking for our so-hard-to-find SoundDock speaker battery which has been on our list for the past two months and refuses to be available, and of course, a little time at Starbucks in Borders looking through some magazines while sipping a hot chocolate. On the home front, I did the laundry, found that box of green tea that I brought back from Kerala, scanned some documents for my hubby, which ended up taking 40 minutes since some of the pages kept getting chopped off on the sides and I had to keep redoing them. Whew, I feel like I've got a lot done today, with my cross country mall trek, that I don't need to secretly start looking for a fat burner or any such thing to lose any weight, right!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

have you seen my led lamp?

Moving to a new house makes it really fun to search for decor ideas on the internet. It's when all the things I want to do to get a new look, well not all, but many at least, can be put into practice, and all that surfing decor sites comes in handy. The problem happens when I forget to bookmark a site and then just cannot find what I was looking for. I found a really great idea for a LED lamp and now I have no idea how I found it and where to find it again. I know all about led flashlights and how cool they are in consuming less energy and being more dependable, but I just wish I could find the page for the cool led lamp which would be perfect for my entry hallway. It wasn't the usual led desk lamp variety, but something quite creative and even magical. I hope I find the page soon....will share it here with you when I do.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

What I should have known about credit cards 10 years ago

I got my first credit card all too easily, when I was a junior in college. I never even applied for one, but there were lots of credit card offers and I was given a pre-approved application and got the card within a few days itself. While I knew I had to be careful about charging money on the card, it was just so easy to get pulled into buying things on sale and think about paying later on. Credit cards are something that we have to have but have to be cautious about. Credit cards are essential in today's world; you can't even rent a car without a credit card, so the only way to handle credit cards smartly is to have an agenda about them, to pay charged amounts as soon as possible, before even the interest is charged. I wish I had been able to read basic credit guidelines such as these before I got into the credit card cycle. It's also a good idea to understand what balance transfers are all about, so you can take advantage of better interest rates elsewhere.

how tech friendly is your corner shop?

The changes one sees is the small retail stores these days is quite interesting. Some time back most of the corner stores never bothered with any technological support but now all of them seem to have a host of retail tech support such as inventory control, audit support or a receipt printer and so on. With the investments that retailers have made into this part of their business, the results are definitely going to show an improvement once the cost of the software has been taken care of.

Do you go to

It's been a week since we moved into our new home and we've made really good progress on the unpacking and organizing, but once the initial rush wears off, I'm finding it hard to get excited about finishing off the work. For one thing, our new home is radically different from our old one, so it looks like we will need to change some of our furniture. Our desk is just wrong for this space and it needs to go, so I've been looking for deals online. I found a good deal on a Canon printer at, which will take up much less space than our current one and will look better in our more modern surroundings. I was quite impressed with the offerings at, especially at the variety of offerings on their weekly deals page, where one can really snap up some good stuff. It really doesn't seem like 3 years ago that I was setting up our old home and now it's time to do it again. How the time as gone by so fast it's hard to really understand at times. I like to make changes to our home and doing it in a new space is even more exciting.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

nothing like comfy shoes, right!

I'm still surprised at the number of brands available here. There is something from every part of the world it seems. Take shoe brands for instance, there is everything from the super luxurious to the thrifty and everything in between as well. I was happy to see that steve madden shoes were also available. These days, I can only look at and try on the super fancy shoes, I don't even consider buying anything with a heel and love coming home to wear my comfy chappals! I'm thinking of trying out some reflexology soles or shoes to see if they make my feet feel better after all the running around we've been doing these past few weeks.

Monday, September 20, 2010

photo: in the evening.

in the evening

Nothing like a relaxed afternoon or evening, isn't it! although this looks like it was a relaxed time, I was probably rushing around to cut the fruit, to grab my camera from the bedroom, to take some pics and then gobble up the guava before little E called out for me. Life's like that!

gift giving options

I'm always looking for great gift ideas for different family members, so when the time comes, I already have an idea on what to buy, instead of getting something generic and hurried at the last minute. One of the things that has been on my list for a while is a pair of Nikon binoculars that will be good for bird watching, since 'someones' old ones are a bit bulky to carry around and need an overhaul. The 'someone' I am talking about never sees my blog so it's ok to write about it out here, but I still don't want to mention the name :-)

thanks to my over enthusiasm

For a lot of people, knee and joint pains start once they hit middle age, but I've had knee problems for a while already. In fact, it started out right after college, when I worked endless and thankless hours at my first job. I suppose I was so kicked at getting such a great job, and the highest salary of my class, that I wanted to really excel. That I did, but I also messed up my knees for a lifetime. According to the docs, what happened was that the cartilage between the knee caps is wearing out, the technical name for it is something like Chondromylacia or some such thing, and one of the key things that helps reduce the damage is the right mix of vitamins glucosamine chondroitin msm. The dosage has to be right, but also the combination of glucosamine and chondroitin in the same capsule, so make it doubly effective. Most of the time I have no daily problem with my knees, but coming down steps bothers me as well as getting up after a 3 hour movie at the theatres.

Keep track of your health

The techniques of getting fit have moved far beyond just eating healthy and exercising. With the kind of lifestyles we lead and the kind of food we eat, we need to keep track of each and everything we eat, how much we work out and how many calories we have burnt. It's hard to keep track of all this data and that's where a calorie counter comes in handy. Where to get one? Go online and search for them and you'll find a lot of interesting products, such as food calorie counters, which looks pretty much like a regular calculator but does a whole lot more, like calculating calories, fat, carbs intake. Besides home-cooked food, the calorie counter can also has food items from restaurants like McDonald's, Wendy's and many more.

the right ads in the right place

Have you ever noticed that marketers have been using social media for pushing their products? All social networking sites, especially popular ones like Facebook have a host of advertisements on the side, all fine tuned to your local area, so that you can click away for getting the safest acne treatment or getting class photos printed on T-shirts for your reunion and so on. I only noticed these ads quite recently. Well, since I don't go on to Facebook much, I'm not likely to notice them earlier, am I? The thing is that I was quite impressed at the reach of their local ads. I mean, some were of places that I'd actually go to, but hadn't known where to find them. So it's a job well done for the marketers and SEO chaps.

not quite so batty yet

Reading what I wrote some time back on a blog post might worry some people that I'm getting too impatient at losing the baby weight, but it's really not as if I'm going around asking everyone can i buy apidexin in stores or some such thing. No way, I'm quite sane, still. And I hope to remain that way! Maybe it's just too late at night to be up and blogging. And you look at the time I posted this and say, wait, 9pm isn't too late at all, but for me it might as well be 3am, since my little baby decided not to sleep at all today and bypassed all her naps. Well, she takes two of them in a day. All of them makes it seem like so many....ah, I remember the early days, when all she wanted was milk and sleep. I could get to sleep in the day time too, but now I can't remember the last time I took a nap during the day. And so I'm back to rambling....Ooops.

Simplifying medical processes

The health care industry is one of the most dynamic industries at the moment. With the number of patients rising, the kind of systems that are required to make the process efficient are increasingly coming onto the market. With products like Timeline-MD physicians, nurses and medical students can use to create, modify, delete or make other changes to your record so that all information is available for use at a later time. Symptoms are noted on a patient's record, so that a doctor can get a better idea of the history of the medical issue. The system does not require any download and you can be signed up in just 10 seconds.

the last 2 that won't budge

I'm in a bit of a odd situation these days. I've always been a skinny to slim girl but now after the baby, it feels weird to have a different body. I've got just the last 2 kilos to go but they don't seem to want to budge at all, and I'm so tempted to go in for something radical like searching for how to burn belly fat and taking the plunge. Well, actually, I'm not going to do anything like that but at times the frustration gets to me and I'm so tempted to go take a look at them when I go past the pharmacies. Got to get my mind to a different direction I think!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

as life goes on...

One of the important pending jobs we had we I got back home was to add on insurance. Having basic health insurance is important, but nothing makes you realize the importance of having backups than having a baby. Sometimes it is as simple as getting some insurance quotes and getting started on a more all rounded package for the whole family, instead of the basic package. Life's priorities go for a six, when you add a little bundle of joy in the mix. What you think are the important things aren't worth much at all and so on.

back to blogging

I'm back after ages and ages it seems. Well, actually it really has been ages since I blogged here. So much has been happening in our lives in the past year, such exciting times but also exhausting times, since it leaves me with little energy to do anything but the basic. Well, anyhow, lately I've been feeling that it's time to get back to some of the things I used to do, and so I thought blogging is a good start to get back some of the old stuff, and when my neighbor asked me about where to find some groomsmen gifts for the wedding she is helping to organize, I could not resist going online, and finding some local companies who do stuff like this. And then, of course, I blogged about it :-)

Friday, May 21, 2010

photo: safe in her father's arms

I've been away for a very special reason. Our daughter Elisha was born on April 26th 2010 and she has filled our world with joy. Here's a shot I took of her asleep in her father's arms. So precious.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Protecting online documents

For anyone who works on a computer, which is the majority of the people, it is essential to have a reliable data security setup, so you don't need to worry about loss or theft of sensitive data. There's been a buzz on the Internet the last few days about an online data security system by, who is giving free downloads of its software for a limited time. Better still, it's not a trial version that they are giving, but the real deal. Their system is reportedly the best way to protect email and attachments, store data on hard drives, laptops and portable media. SecureZIP integrates with Microsoft Outlook and automatically encrypts, digitally signs and zips email messages and attachments. SecureZIP - The next generation of ZIP is what one needs to get set up, to have peace of mind and assurance that one's data is secure. It's the way of the future, so get your completely free download today!

corporate gifting

Corporate gifting has become a big deal lately and with each passing day, it seems to gain more importance. Whether it is some office item like personalized stationary or pens or something more personal like cigars, the popularity is rather amazing. With some companies, it doesn't matter what you gift, but how expensive and exclusive the gift is. In other words, a good gift is one that is hard to find, due to its price or just its exclusivity and if you get something like this, you're sure to gain some points.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

more jobs on the horizon

A lot of people are talking about how the rise of job sites is making a difference in ending the drought of jobs. I do think many companies are being more aggressive when it comes to marketing their services, but also many of them are changing their tactics and not playing hardball as they were inclined to do earlier, when they held all the cards. Now, many companies are looking for people, and often are using their internal hiring departments instead of using outside companies, which are feeling the pinch, hence the rethinking of the strategy.

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Tomksoft's Techblog: a valuable find

As a blogger, one tends to read a lot of blogs to learn something new, a new product, a new perspective or a new trend. Those are my top three reasons for looking for interesting sites and lately my interest has been shifting towards reading more and more technology related blogs. I am a retail analyst, but I have a curious mind and like reading about the ways that technology has adapted and woven it's way into pretty much all aspects of our lives. While my main focus is on reading about retail related technologies, I am fascinated by the subject as a whole.

My latest find was a techblog called Tomksoft's Techblog, which is written by Tomasz Klekot, a 14 year old living in Poland. While the blog is for the most part quite technical and highfalutin, I found myself reading post after post, as Tomasz is able to elaborate on his subjects rather well. The main focus of the blog is of course programming, software languages, delphi and Google Adsense, which I found I had to bookmark immediately, so that I could come back and re-read it. Do read how he wrote some code to get 7000 emails off the Internet in just 10 minutes.

must have jackets that keep changing

Before I went to college in the States, I really wanted one of those letter jackets that football players wore. I didn't know that you couldn't just buy them, players had to earn them, but I kept telling my sister that's what I wanted and she must get it for me! Nowadays, it seems that these Nascar jackets are more popular than the old style letter jackets worn by football players. What's the next craze going to be?

everyday jewelry?

Who doesn't love diamonds? Everyone right! I'm not one for wearing too much jewelry, actually any real jewelry at all, but even I love to look online at diamonds in my free time! The other day my mother asked me why I don't wear any gold at all, no chain, no bangle etc, and I said I just couldn't be bothered wearing the same thing day in and day out...I love to play with my casual jewelery, changing it on a daily basis. But she has a point, I think it's high time I get some nice gold bracelet, something modern that I would like to wear everyday, something that would fit my lifestyle.

The viability of reseller programs

The Internet is a source of income for a lot of people who earn large amounts of money from it. One of the ways that people make money online is by domain name registration and Internet businesses. There are thousands of inactive websites out there, some with good SEO keywords in it that can be resold for a profit and there are lots of reseller program companies that will help you get started. To earn money from this business, you need to be able to resell domain names and hosting in bulk. The way to go about it is to do your research on what niche you want to focus on.

With some kind of a local resellers program, all you have to do is select the products you want to sell and activate the list. Pricing is up to you, so you can determine just how much profit you want to make. The entire website can be set up in under an hour and you can customize the images, font etc to what you prefer. Having a reseller program is a great way to earn a secondary income. I think one of the major concerns would be regarding how much knowledge was required to do something like this successfully, but a good amount of research can set that right.

limits of meanness

When one goes to the Chemist or doctor's office one has to be prepared for anything and everything. I hate it when the receptionist at a doctor's office is not proper about being quiet about patient's complaints. I mean, no one really wants to know that the pretty lady in the pink skirt was here for treatment for hemorrhoids and see her turn into all shades of pink herself. That's just plain mean on the part of anyone. Chemists seem to do it too, often yelling across the store when the prescription is ready, with the complaint, only to find someone quietly slink to the counter, grab the medication and then rush back out head down. I sometimes think they do it on purpose.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

an easier way to handle projects

Business software is a field that has become rather competitive lately, and rightly so, as the scope is amazing. Initially, there used to be only the simple types of software available for business, such as accounting and data entry, but now you have assistance in everything from project management software to appraisal reviews, which I think is one of the really cool ones. I did a trial on one of them and I was really impressed at how it worked. With project management software too, there is a lot of coordination involved and so having a software to deal with all the technicalities of time and money allotment and of course deadlines, makes it much easier.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Small business phone systems

Ever since I started working from home, I've been using a VoIP phone system for all my work related calls, especially my international calls. Voice over Internet Protocol or VoIP as it is more commonly known as, is an especially great option for small to medium businesses as it saves on time and money. There are lots of small business phone system services available, of which Virtual Office has one of the most powerful hosted PBX systems. Perfect for both long distance and local calling, once you start using the Virtual Office, you'll wonder why you didn't switch earlier.

Residential plans start at just $24.99 a month, which gives unlimited local and long distance calling in the US and Canada and fax only plans at $9.99 a month. Maintenance with VoIP phones is non-existent to minimal, so it's perfect system to install and just forget about it. Business plans start at $14.99 a month for the Virtual Attendant plan; with a wide range of plans, it is easy to customize the kind of service you require.

search goof ups

Surfing on the Internet, one can be sure to come across all sorts of sites, regardless of if one was actually searching for something similar or not. The advertisements on the right bar are especially irritating as they keep coming up with mis-matched results. So you might be searching for a "extended family vacation" and getting something like extenze on the result page. Very odd and definitely not what I was thinking will show up on the page. Quite often it happens with the smaller search engines, but even Yahoo and Google turn up with such results every once in a while. If you see the stat reports for your blog, you will see the way people end up on your blog and often it's through a word that you might have mentioned somewhere deep in the blog, but have nothing at all to do with the subject per se.

magazine ads

Open any magazine and you are sure to find a ton of advertisement for everything from gorgeous hair extensions to getting the perfect tan to weight loss programs such as quick trim burn and cleanse reviews. It all makes me curious as to how many people actually go through the back of the mags for these advertisements? Have you ever bought or used anything that was marketed, advertised or promoted by celebrities on these pages? I haven't found anything that I really must try so far, but one never knows, does one!

no quick fixes in life

I keep writing about it, but it seems to make no difference to those who have already decided to take this course of action. The thing is that there are no short cuts in life, you have to do the work to make things right for the long haul. Even though you might be successful at something like a quick weight loss plan, there are no guarantees that it can be applied to the rest of your life. Some things and even the one I mentioned might not really work at all in the short run. Try if you'd like, but it just make sense to go slow and steady.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

photo: one morning

one morning

A photo from my winter trip to India. I visited north India in the winter after many, many years and although enjoyed a bit of the chill, after a week, I was ready to head back to the warmth of, I sure will not get to say that very often! This was taken in the park close to home where I really enjoy going for my walks.

as a resource tool

Did you know that prospective brides use the internet for research and ideas more than magazines these days? Did you use the internet as a source of information and ideas for your own wedding? I confess that I did not, but I do like to spend time now looking through these sites for the amazing ideas they have. From wedding accessories to photo specials, these sites can be a great help if you're planning your own wedding, or have definite ideas that you want to pass on to your wedding planner. A little bit of everything works well in these situations.

gizmo' or nuisance

When it comes to technology, do you really think there is a point where one can stop and say enough is enough? I don't think so. As new things keep coming onto the market, we get convinced that we do really need them, to work better, to be more efficient and of course to multi-task, where something like a Bluetooth headset would really come in handy. I do like to keep up with new technology and fun gizmo's but sometimes it feels like they are a lot more work than the help they promise to provide.

Monday, March 01, 2010

photo: indulgence


Indulging in a teeny-tiny piece of the most delicious and decadent chocolate cake. It's from a bakery called Baker and Spice, located in Souk Al Bahar, overlooking the Burj Khalifa in Dubai and I just cannot get enough of it. I wish I could have a slice or two every day. I don't think I could ever get tired of it.

printing away

I find that having a 4-in-one printer, scanner, copier and fax machine is a real boon. I would have ended up wasting so much time if I didn't have this at home, and the printer cartridges last for a good amount of time, so it's really worthwhile. While some retail oriented printers such as the epson receipt printer are said to be also a good option, I like my basic version which has been a great buy.The small grocery down the street is always complaining about how his receipt printer is packing up, so I think I should recommend this one to him.

a sleek look

The past couple of weeks, we've been busy doing some rearranging of furniture etc at home. We is a general term, actually it's just been me! He comes and nods in approval though every once in a while :-) I've always like a more un-fussy style and so having some contemporary sofas in our house was a given. I don't care for anything too modern, things that look like they came from the Star Trek set and all that, but I like it to have clean lines and nothing gaudy or jarring at all. The one we have is a nice sleek one, but is really comfortable too...especially for taking afternoon naps!

Monday, February 15, 2010

TheNewsRoom: embed news on your site

Today's surfing found a very interesting site that allows you to earn money from video clips that you embed on your site. The News Room is a completely free service and signing up just takes a couple of minutes. Once you have your account set up, you can upload video clips of your choice on your site and get paid each time someone watches it. It's a great way to make money via advertising share, with CPM staring at $1. Besides cash, members can also earn prizes, including big ones such as cars and vacations. Embedding a video is as simple as copying and pasting a code and that's is.

There are thousands or licensed news stories that members can publish or 'mash' on your site. By combining content from a number of sites such as Associated Press (AP), Reuters and many more, TheNewsRoom has given access to some of the best sources of news to its members. I decided to search for some interesting news to embed and found that I had a hard time choosing just one item. With news from across the world and from all sphere's there is something for everyone at TheNewsRoom.

a new way to send wishes

Well, this is something that I've not come across too often. There was a time that people would send Christmas and other holiday cards to each other, the post offices would be inundated with bags and bags of mail, and everyone would proudly display their cards on the mantle. Now days the way to go about it apparently, is to write a post about it on your blog and email that link to your friends and family. I've not done it, but I think richard willich has. It's a new way of doing things, but not sure when I'm going to go in that direction.

never to young to.....

When is it time to start using beauty products that promise to turn back the clock? Is it in one's 40's when the lines really start showing up? Or is it in one's 30s when the lines first appear, but look more like signs of happiness than wrinkles, or is it in one's 20s when one should try to prevent them from even occurring? Well, if the manufacturers and marketers of many wrinkle crème brands are to be believed, it's the last scenario. Really, I'm not kidding, they actually think that the best time is to start using them when one is in one's mid-twenties, so that you can partly stall the damage and partly get used to the idea of applying 20,000 different things onto your face. I'm not impressed. It's all a marketing gambit obviously. Wrinkles are not "damages" as they put it, they're signs of a life well lived. Deal with it and be happy with it.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

its not just for old people

I'm too young to start having joint pain, but the fact is that I do. It seems that the cartilage in my knees is worn knee is worse than the other, so it's not just something that happens to old people. I even went out and bought a bottle of joint pain supplements but then never got around to taking it till it was almost expired. Oh well! I think I was in a bit of denial myself. What has helped is moderate but regular exercise, such as walks and even going up and down stairs, which I thought would make it worse, but it has actually made it better. Hope my enthusiasm for keeping it at bay continues!

caught up in reading

I have to confess, I've barely been sleeping lately. I'm hooked onto a new series of books that is just not letting me sleep until it's late, late, late into the night, and if I don's let up a bit I'm soon going to be the one searching for things like cream for deark circles under eyes and so on. Oh dear, that can be dreary, can it not! With the days been so busy, I've just not had the time to read much during the day, although I've started taking the book with me and reading in the car...yes, it's the only time I get to read in the day time, but it has given me a head start!

photo: by the flowers

Remembering the masses of winter flowers at home when I visited in December. The weather was great at that time, bright sunny days and cool nights, hardly winter at all, and so the flowers all bloomed a bit earlier than their usual January time line.

the trend for teen spending to continue

According to research by a leading retail management group, the focus on teenagers and adolescents will continue in the coming year thanks to the huge spending potential of this segment. Despite the cash crunch, this section of the population is not cutting back its spending on what it considers as the essentials, such as treatment for blackheads or acne or for any other kind of beauty treatment that can be purchased over the counter. Marketers have noted this trend and are even bringing out newer products that will reach a wider audience.

the push to looking better at any cost

Back from all my errands and chores that pile up to be done over the weekend. Wait a minute, isn't the weekend meant to be about relaxing and enjoying the time off from work? I try to keep one day completely free of any kind of "work" so that one gets some time away from it all, but sometimes it's just not possible. This morning I'd gone to the pharmacy to stock up on vitamins and saw the largest section of the store dedicated to diets for quick weight loss programs and so on. I visit my local pharmacy every month or so to stock up, but this is the first time I've seen such a strong push towards these products, and the local neighborhood is quite conservative, so I was surprised to see it all.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

photo: clarity..


Don't you love looking up into the sky and watching the trees and leaves quiver in the wind. It's my favorite kind of daydreaming along with dreaming about my dream home of course, of art to hang here, of a sofa to place there, of just the right console table and so on. Anyway, I've gone off be out in nature is a wonderful feeling for me and I love the peacefulness of this picture.

of kits of all kinds

The other day I was at the market and came across a huge variety of kits, everything ranging from pond kits to herb kits that grew in water in a little rectangular fish tank kind of glass. I was quite intrigued by it and read the instructions. It seems easy enough and even worthwhile enough to buy, especially since it wasn't too expensive. All it requires is some time and attention at the initial germination stage and then one just has to keep it watered. If only I wasn't going to be away for some time, I would go for it now. I think I will get it once I'm back. Seems like a good experiment if nothing else.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

the confusion of it all

We've been running around getting some new health insurance lately. Well, "getting" is the wrong word, I suppose, since we haven't finalized with the new company, thanks to the confusing way they work. It turns out that if I am out of the country for over 2 months, my insurance gets invalidated and since I would have to pay for the full year up in advance, I don't get any refund or any such thing. I mean, hello...the whole insurance business is already so confusing with annuities and a whole bunch of other legalese, but the complicate the matter more, seems pointless. For customers at least!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

photo: on the creek

on the creek

Remembering our trip to the Creek last year when the weather was fabulous. Well, it's that time of the year again and we're planning to head that way again, hope to find some new interesting nooks and crannies in the area as we usually do. A new cafe, a hidden juice bar, a local pastry shop and so on.

investing in an education

Getting a specialized degree is always going to be an asset, but it's also a good idea to consider it an investment, something that will pay you back over the course of your life. While most working individuals cannot take time off to go full-time to a regular university, an online university such as Western Governors Online University is a good option that will help you in the long run. Now, I know that there are lots and lots of online universities out there, but in the end what really makes an educational institute count is the results it can achieve for its students. Say, for example that you take an online nursing degree from then go on to work at one of the leading hospitals of your city, then the experience is surely worthwhile, right? Tied along with the learning one gathers from such an education is the hands-on practical training that goes alongside, which makes it more applicable than any other type of learning.

diversify your talents

In the time that the economy is slow, it's a good option to explore new areas of work. This is especially true for professions that allow you to freelance, such as business plan consultants where you could maybe do some extra work in your off time and see if you're suited for it. Getting another degree or some kind of qualification is another good option while things are slow, since it always pays to be more qualified. A specialized degree or a degree in a diversified field are both good options and are generally looked upon favorably by recruiters.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

photo: do you notice the light and shadows?

do you notice the light and the shadows?

A photo from our trip to the Bastakiya arts quarter in Dubai in Nov/Dec. I love this little's got character and atmosphere, even though most of it is not old and has been redone somewhat recently. But it's been done well and it's a wonderful place to sit back and imagine what life would have been in this city, a 100 years back.

when is the right time to start on anti-aging creams?

Again, in continuation with my last post, the other thing that teenagers obsess about constantly are skin care products, which is an obvious result of anyone having any kind of skin problem. The skin care segment is a gigantic sector, but the two areas that make the most money are the teenage segment and the mid to older segment to whom companies market the anti-wrinkle creams and so forth. Interestingly, the second segment used to target only 50+ women, but now all anti-aging creams focus on starting using these creams by the time you're in your late 20s itself. Is that really required? I doubt it, but fear is a good marketing gamble.

marketing to teenagers

What is one of the most popular topic for blog posts among teenage girls? Not really that hard to crack...its solutions for acne that hits the top spot. Not only is the most written about topic but it is also one of the most researched one, besides searching for their favorite singers and downloading their songs. Marketers are tapping into this insight and have been offering money to post advertisements on teenage blogs or others which have a teenage readership. It pays to keep up with the trends and nothing is more important than understanding or trying to understand how their mind works! Quite a tough task!

Computer games

For anyone who spends a lot of time working online, playing games is one of the best way to relax a bit. I have drastically reduced the amount of time I used to spend playing games, but still do manage a couple of hours each week. I found a site that has lots of pc computer games that can be played online, from puzzle, arcade, action, video, casino, adventure, cards and much more. With so many types of games, I am sure to be occupied going through all of the for quite some time. I am especially fond of puzzle games and there are lots of such games available including Jewel of Atlantis, Bejeweled, Treasure Island and much more. Among the word games, I love Bookworm.

to click or not to click

In continuation of my last post, about how one finds advertisements placed in a variety of sites, I came across an advertisement about fda approved diet pills on a well-known interior design magazine site and decided to do some investigation. It can often be risky business clicking onto unknown advertisements, but I thought let me at least see how authentic these advertisements actually are. Do they lead to a real site or just one of those sites that compile and collect another bunch of sites. Anyhow, it turned out that my wireless connection was lost right then, so I wasn't able to connect. I take that as a sign :-)

placing ads

One just cannot get away from self improvement ads of all kinds. No matter what kind of site you open up, well, not all sites, but the bulk of sites, there are advertisements on the side for a variety of weight loss programs such as, which I saw on a decor site. I didn't think they really went together, but as the readership of most decor sites is primarily women, it's the exact kind of audience that self improvement and weight loss sites are looking for. It would be interesting to find out the stats on how many people actually click through to these ads though.

Discounts on office supplies

I'm a office supply buff, simply love buying stuff for my home office and there's no place better than Office Depot. As much as I love going to the store and browsing to get ideas on new products and gizmo's, I've started buying stuff from them online since I get some sweet Office Depot coupons from an online store which is this really cool way to save money. I got a nice discount on some filing cabinets that I ordered from there and since I was getting such a nice discount, I ended up buying some additional stuff as well. And, that's what shopping is all about...finding a store that you love and getting great deals.

on the weather affecting one's health

One is always reading about how different climates affect ones bones, especially as one gets older. For people with more serious problems, many believe that arthritis pain treatment is much more effective if done in the right climate as well. Cold, misty and rainy places might seem wonderfully romantic, but apparently they are quite bad for anyone with any kind of bone problem, where the joints get stiff and the pain increases. Warmer climates are much more suited to those with these kinds of problems.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

somewhere warm and sunny

Winter is a great time to plan getaways right, especially to places where the weather is warm and sunny, the atmosphere relaxed and the breeze always blowing! Well, maybe it's time I started checking out some of these turks and caicos hotels for deals and specials, since we're just back from a vacation, and it only makes sense to go again if the price is right! Ha ha, yes the pun is definitely intended :-) Searching for vacations is fun, but only if one manages to go for them right!