C for Crisis Counselor #AtoZChallenge

Yess…you read it right! One of the first things I did when I decided to quit my job and move was to think about how “productive” I could be. Because quitting equaled uncertainty. I was moving to a new state, new home etc etc..all exciting yet the last thing I wanted was to regret or feel bored. So around the same time as I was planning my move I came across this opportunity to be a Crisis Counselor ..what does that mean? I help people facing/feeling crisis over text. Continue Reading

B for Baking #AtoZChallenge

BThe divine smell of sugar, butter, fresh cookies wafting.. I have read it so so many times and experienced it of course in bakeries, pastry shops and now at home..my home 🙂 Feels so good to say that! One of the new things I am learning is baking. I was bored one Sunday evening as R had to work and so I decided to browse through recipes and make something. Shortbread Cookies it was ..Flour, Butter and Sugar! What could go wrong I thought. The house smelled truly amazing. The cookies were ok-ok. I did not have any measuring tools, baking tray (I used foil) or even a whisk.So that was a learning 🙂

The next day I was so excited about baking, I printed a recipe and decided to buy every single item needed for it including mixing bowl, loaf pan, whisk, ingredients and made it to the dot. The result was superb! I decided to make Orange Pecan Tea Bread (that was just one of the first things that came up on google :P)

Following the success of a fluffy moist tea bread, baking has now become a pretty regular thing in my weekly chores and a great therapeutic hobby I should add (well..you get to eat what you bake right :D).

After my first trip to buy Baking 101 things, I ended up buying much more , one of which was a mini-muffin pan. Above are my experiments with the same.

Breakfast bites – Kale, eggs, cheese and bell pepper baked.

Zucchini and Strawberry mini muffins which turned to be pretty popular in my house.

Still a novice but I think baking is here to stay 🙂 You can follow me on Instagram to see my journey www.instagram.com/zanyajan.

Please do leave your comments on what I should try next and if you have them on your blog I would love to try your recipe !!

A for Asafoetida – #AtoZChallenge


Life of a Stay-at-Home-Wife (SAHW)- Yes, I have said it out loud and it took me 5 months to say it. I could say I am in between jobs or unemployed but the truth is at this point in time I am a SAHW. I am enjoying this phase and taking baby steps (in accepting it) yet it was something I never thought I would be ..ever..EVER! So, here you go.. 30 days of different elements of my life 🙂

Asafoetida – Perungayam in Tamil, Hing in Hindi and Inguva in Telugu

Asafoetida is a spice that intrigued me growing up. Unlike most other spices which my mom had in whole, dry and powdered form, this was only in powdered form and only from the white dabba (see picture below). And I use the same brand and box now 😀

It is the dried latex (gum oleoresin) exuded from the rhizome or tap root of several species of Ferula, a perennial herb that grows 1 to 1.5 m (3.3 to 4.9 ft) tall. It has an interesting flavor – it is pungent by itself and super-aromatic when added to a dish. I use it almost every day for all south Indian dishes I make. What I heard growing up was that it aids digestion and reduces flatulence.

So here ends the first day of #AtoZChallaenge. A spice used in the everyday life of this SAHW 🙂


A-Z Challenge 2017

Woohoo! I am back after three months and I am so excited to be back to my blog 🙂

I attempted NaBloPoMo and did not succeed so this time I am going to approach A-Z Challenge without expectations.

So what do I have in mind for the next 30 days? “Stay At Home” in 30 days.. I have been a stay at home wife for the last few months and I hope to write my experiences on the same. It could be about a new spice, a recipe, a new hobby, challenges, emotions, job interviews etc. Looking forward to blogging regularly and also read more blogs 🙂

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On gender, being domestic et al! 

I am at the airport again, now on my way back. I have five hours to kill ..

So I am just back from an all-girls weekend with a group of friends from grad-school. This was the first time I am away after moving together with R. It felt a little weird (in a good way) to say home during conversations all through the weekend. Because this time ‘home’ meant ‘my own’ – with a kitchen and a man n all!!

img_20170110_201608.jpgThis post ties to a few things that happened before and during the past weekend.

Conversation 1-  Before the trip 

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At the Airport.. 

As I was sitting at the airport texting my friends saying I am going to board soon, one of them texted back “Deadly shooting at X airport”

 I rushed to look at the news on the screen near me. 5 dead and 19 injured.

“Wasn’t that our one of our choices.” another texted. Yes, my brain said. It was infact one of our top choices and it didn’t happen only because the flights were cheaper to the other airport in the same area. Five of us from across the country could have been at or flying to the airport that had the deadly shooting incident. For the first time, I started panicking looking at the plane in front of me.

  Such things can happen anywhere, anytime and especially in the present world where we hear about such attacks so much more often.What do we do? Can we stop travelling or going to public places? Should we constantly be freaking out? 

I guess we should just calm ourselves down and move on with hope. With faith that we will be safe and if not, that we face whatever comes our way. 

My heart goes out to everyone who were killed or injured today for absolutely no reason. To their families who were either traveling with them or were waiting for their arrival or worse , just bid goodbye. 

Now I am off to board my flight! 

Do tell me if you have had such moments and how you have handled them. Thanks!

What in the world!

I thought my first post of the year is going to be about domestic cohabitation or what I have learnt to cook. But, unfortnately no, I am here feeling appalled.

What happened you ask? Bangalore .. Mass molestation of women on New Year’s Eve in front of 1500 policemen happened. Women were grabbed, groped, touched, shoved around  during New Year Celebration in the city. As as they ran to the police asking for help nothing was done. It is claimed that the 1500 police were outnumbered.

A groups of males basically thought they were entitled enough to do anything to the females and nobody would hold them responsible (something happening all over the world right?).

As a Banaglore newspaper posted pictures, the police chief released a stament saying it  is concocted news by the journalists and a home minister stated that he blames the young people who were dressing up like westerners and copying them. And that “these things happen” .


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The few policemen who reacted just scared the men away and returned to their “positions”. Nobody thought of arresting them or calling for backup. They just scared them away.

As I read these articles and felt so hot and flustered, the next thing comes in, #NotAllMen hashtag. All the protectors of men and their rights declaring on social media that not all men are rapists , molestors etc etc. Seriously? *insert profanity* *more profanity*


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And after six days, the police have released a statement saying all this is true and that they are looking into CCTV footages and filing FIRs. And I know the end, they would arrest a couple of people and close the case. The men are all already roaming about scott-free gloating about how they got to grope women and never got caught.

And the women are scarred for life hesitating to go for a party each time from now, reliving this story for many many years to come.

What do I wish could be done? In the next post…




From 2016 to 2017! 

Hello everyone!!

How are you doing? It has been more than a  month since I even logged in to WordPress. Early November I was excited about NaBloPoMo, picked a topic ( a great one if I may say so) and the I went AWOL after Day 6. I picked up my phone a few times to continue but never did and the guilt added to no blog posts at all. I finally decided to log in and give y’all an update. 
First .. Happy New Year!

I don’t think anything much has changed/will change but it is always nice to have new beginnings. It will help us to relatively compare and associate events and decide if it was better or worse.

So….2016? I think it was an interesting year. Some top things of 2016.

On the blog:

I had a mixed year. I started off great with my wedding series and lots of guest posts.

I started a Travel tab and wrote about my solo trip to Hong Kong.

I had periods where I was active and periods I went AWOL. I started with NaBloPoMo but couldn’t keep up :-/ . I hope to start afresh and finish the challenge I took up.

Personal life:

Well.. I got married!!! The whole planning and experience was awesome! Stressful yes.. but good 🙂

I traveled a bit more than I have before. East Coast, Pacific Coast, India, HongKong and some weekend local trips.

I had some unexpected physical and mental ups and downs in the last few months (which is what life is all about right?).


wait for it..MY BIG MOVE!!

Yes.. if you have been following my blog you would have noticed my posts about my long distance relationship with R. I finally made up my mind and decided to quit everything and move!

Aren’t clean fresh starts great? I think so. New place, new people, new home.. the last month has been interesting. I sure miss my “woman cave” but (married) cohabitation seems to have its own benefits ( like how he collects my coffee mugs around the house and washes them 😛 or how I can get away with just doing laundry and leave the folding part to the other person). I hope to write more about all of it this year !

I hope all of you are doing well.. I am going to go and start reading your posts now. I hope to be more consistent and disciplined blogging-wise  this year*fingers-crossed*.

Happy New Year once again 🙂



The Light in Me

“The light in me honors the light in you ” says my yoga instructor.

Diwali 2016 : I ate  Magic beans and milk chocolate from Trader Joe’s instead of jalebi and adhirasam from Grand Sweets. I received seer from my family by choice who live near me instead of my parents who live far. My celebration was with people who share love instead of blood or language or culture. It wasn’t the taste of my grandmother’s homemade food that caused a lump in my throat but a tight hug from my friend wishing me well. 

Thala Diwali ( First Diwali after your wedding). In my culture, the first Diwali is considered special. The couple is given a lot of attention on this day by drowning them in calories, gifts and love. To me it was yet another festival far away from home and now my husband too.

When I sent out an invite to all my friends at work who have never celebrated Diwali..I didn’t think of it much. I reserved a table at a restaurant that promised a BIG BUFFET. Everyone were excited and started asking questions. I explained the celebration and about ‘Thala Diwali’  the previous day. 

As we sat down to dig into the buffet I received a bag filled with goodies. I was told this was my seer or the gift bag that parents would have given the couple. Though my family by blood couldn’t be there together to celebrate , my family by choice did. As I felt overwhelmed, thanking them over and over , all my friend said was “You deserve it” . I don’t know if I deserve it but I knew I wished for it. And this was the world fulfilling my wish in its own way. 

It definitely is going to be a very memorable thala Diwali 🙂 And I truly completely felt the festival of lights within me. 

“The light within me honors the light within all these people who made my day ” Happy happy Diwali to all of you from R and J 🙂 

On a Pedestal..

“Jan, I think you put me on a pedestal” said R during the early stages of our relationship. It was a moment where I was struggling to voice a disagreement between us. I was not angry but disappointed and couldn’t come to terms with the fact that he had said something wrong. Mulling over it for over a week, self doubting myself I finally decided to tell him I disagree with his opinion. But I struggled, choked and teared up.

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