Month: December 2021

Lotus pond with pink water lillies

My Top 3: A List of my Favourites in 2021

My Top 3: A List of my Favourites in 2021 – top books of 2021, Top movies and TV shows of 2021, top things to do at home or locally, and top self-care tips. What are your top favourites of 2021?

Cover of the book Call me by your name on a Kindle in a beach setting

Book Review: Call me by your name by André Aciman

Call Me by Your Name is a highly sensual, somewhat nostalgic and sweet novel by André Aciman about the longings of young forbidden love. The main character, Elio, is struggling with his sexual identity. He is 17 and falls in love with Oliver, his father’s new research assistant.

It is a coming of age story about a young boy’s first love told from his perspective as a grown man reflecting on the summer that changed his life. You can feel the longing, love, and passion throughout the book. 


Call Me by Your Name has been adapted into a film starring Armie Hammer and Timothée Chalamet. The smooth voice of Armie Hammer narrates the Audible version of the book.

Book Review: The One by John Marrs

The One by John Marrs is a science fiction book that seems all too real. It is based on the concept of finding your soulmate through genetic mapping. We follow the lives of five people from different walks of life and whose lives are changed considerably because of this technology. There is a little romance and some sci-fi, but this is a suspense thriller to the very end.
Overall, I found the book to be interesting. The subject matter was good food for thought, and the underlying suspense of it all kept me hooked till the end. If you’re looking for a quick, fast-paced book for the holidays, The One by John Marrs is a good recommendation!

Spine of hardcover books from the Gilded wolves trilogy series next to a coffee mug and glasses

A Book Review: Roshani Chokshi’s Gilded Wolves trilogy

I came upon The Gilded Wolves series by Roshani Chokshi by pure coincidence. The series includes three books, namely The Gilded Wolves, The Silvered Serpents, and The Bronzed Beasts.

It is a series that mixes fantasy and history in a way that had me hooked right from the first page. It is set in Paris during the late 19th century, which in itself evokes a kind of romance that’s hard to parallel. It follows the story of a group of pariahs led by Séverin Montagnet-Alarie as they get thrown into a world of magic, myth, and political conspiracy. 

child in santa hat looking in wonder at christmas decorations

Christmas gift ideas for kids that are not toys

Christmas time is one of the most wonderful times of the year. Unfortunately, it can also be a time when we spoil our kids with toys that they do not need. Don’t get me wrong—I love toys; I think they’re necessary for a child’s physical and mental growth. But look for toys that are not just a fad and can genuinely be used to expand their creativity and imagination. However, there are other alternative gift ideas that kids will genuinely love and want to use.
It is crucial as a parent to teach our children that no matter what gift we give them is not the purpose of the holiday. It is about the meaning of Christmas and the child’s interaction with their family. Gifting should be more about the time spent and quality time than about the gift itself.

DIY Christmas tree made with cardboard packaging, lit up with a string light and decorated with toys

DIY Christmas Trees that are Eco-friendly and Plastic-free

It’s that time of the year again when we see Christmas decorations start to fill the streets. Most of these decorations sold in your regular stores are made from materials that typically get thrown out and end up in landfills (like plastic). Everywhere you look, it stares back at you in the form of trees, decorations, gifts, and wrapping paper. Here are some ideas that allow you to lead a low-waste lifestyle and conform to the true meaning of Christmas.

Pearl Barley salad with BBQ spiced cottage cheese

Quick and Healthy Lunch Options: Barley salad with BBQ Paneer

Try out this healthy lunch option with pearl barley. With so many meals being cooked at home in the last two years of quarantine, it can be pretty challenging to keep coming up with exciting meal ideas. I mean, how many ways can you cook rice? Healthy meal options that are not too heavy on the tummy can be difficult to plan when you don’t have access to exotic ingredients.

A Book Review: Blue-Skinned Gods by SJ Sindu

Blue-Skinned Gods by SJ Sindu is one of the most underrated books I’ve read this year. I picked it up only because THE Roxane Gay highly rated it, and it’s one of the best books of 2021 for me. The book blurb doesn’t do it justice. A poignant journey of emotions and relationships makes this a must-read book.
I listened to the Audible version of this book, which was beautifully narrated by Varun Sathi.

hawa mahal Jaipur facade

Colourful Jaipur in 2 Days: Best spots for photo ops

Jaipur is one of the favourite cities in India for destination weddings. No wonder—with all its palaces and lavish hospitality, you’re made to feel like royalty. Even the locals cannot resist all the photo ops the city offers. Every landmark, even the streets in Jaipur, were filled with people and couples with a camera crew trying to get a shot to last a lifetime!
Check out this itinerary for Jaipur in 2 days

pen and ink drawing of a raven done for inktober 2021 prompt

The Inktober 2021 Challenge: Completed

If you spend any time on social media, you’re probably bombarded with hundreds of different challenges, big and small. It seems everyone is hopping onto the challenge bandwagon. Whether it was the ice bucket challenge a few years ago, a fitness challenge, or a TikTok dance challenge, someone is challenging you to do something whatever your area of interest.  If you’re an artist, you might have heard of the Inktober challenge. It is one of the more popular art challenges and has participants worldwide. This challenge takes place in October every year (virtually, of course). A list of one-word prompts is released, one prompt for each day of the month, and artists have to draw how they interpret that word. There’s no particular style you need to stick to—heck, you don’t even need to stick to the official list—just make your own list for the month. Inktober Art Challenge According to his website, Jake Parker created Inktober in 2009 as a challenge to improve his inking skills and develop positive drawing habits. It has since …