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Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Upcoming post! An Exciting one! Trust Me!



You would've already started guessing what this over exposed pic is about...right?

  If you are a Natural Beauty enthusiast from India, You would've already gotten super excited!

This is only half of what's gonna come up! Yes...there is something else too! And that 'something' is just as Exciting! :)

As for the product in the picture,

Clue 1: I told you that i will post about it at the end of last year but never did. 
Clue 2: I mentioned about it at the end of some of my posts dating from last year's last month to this year's first month.

Let's see how many of you can find it out! ;)

--------------------*--------------------
Love,
Siri.

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Saturday, January 14, 2017

Last forest Pebbles Soaps-Jasmine, Lemongrass and Basil review


Review of the Last forest's Pebbles Soap-'Jasmine' .

About the brand:

Last Forest Enterprises is a marketing initiative of Keystone Foundation – it aims to spread the message of:

*small indigenous farmers and gatherers.
*value added organic produce.
*biodiversity and food security.
*indigenous knowledge, traditions and crafts.
*sustainable harvesting & farming methods.
*local employment & markets.
*fair trade principles.


Last Forest also promotes products from other areas in the country, with similar values. It runs a chain of 3 stores in Tamil Nadu. It procures produce from over 60 groups across the country and supplies to over 40 retailers.

Last forest is now a World Fair Trade Certified Organisation bringing you fair trade goods to your doorstep.

Let's move on to the review of these aromatic soaps now...

Both Basil and Lemongrass look similar like this.



The Jasmine one looks like this.



My Experience:

I love collecting pebbles. I just love the word 'Pebbles'!. So, when i saw these on the shelves of 'Dhanyam organic store-chennai', i just grabbed them without any second thoughts. :P :D 

All three of them are really good SLS free natural soaps. They lather awesome and don't dry the skin. As for fragrance, the Jasmine one has the most beautiful scent of them all and leaves behind a beautifully fragant skin. It is also my personal favourite. Both Lemongrass and Basil smell mildly of their respective fragrances.

Pebbles did not disappoint afterall! :D

Pros:

*SLS free.
*Paraben and Petrochemical free.
*Leaves the skin moisturized and fragrant.
*Biodegradable and Eco-friendly.
*Made by a World Fair Trade Certified Organisation.

Cons:

*Lathers less in hard water.

Do i recommend? Yes, if you have soft water supply. The jasmine one especially. And also because of all their noble efforts towards preserving the planet and humanity. <3

This is a part of the "Soapathon" series.

So, Do you like pebbles too? Tell me about it! :)
--------------------*--------------------
Love,
Siri.

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Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Get ready for a "Soapathon"!



Hello doston :) Ya..felt like deviating from angrezi a li'l bit :P :D You must be wondering, where on earth is the "Product of the year" she was talking about? right? Sadly, due to some personal reasons, i couldn't edit and resize the pictures on time :(

So, for now, i thought i will talk about a giant bunch of Indian natural soaps that i've tried till now. Now, what do you call a marathon of soap reviews? 

A 'Soapathon'! ;)

But, don't worry..i will not load you up with soap reviews continuously. I will review them in every alternate post. I will talk about either a bunch of them together in a single post or individually.

So, if you are a fan of natural soaps, do not miss the 'Soapathon' that will start sometime this week itself. See ya. :)
--------------------*--------------------
Love,
Siri.

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Thursday, December 29, 2016

'Sukrishi Organic Farm/Food Forest', Bangalore Experience: Part 2 - Mud Cottage and Mudhol Canine.



Did the Previous post make you want to visit and stay at the 'Sukrishi Organic Farm/Food Forest', but left you wondering how and where? Here's the Answer:
(Pricing and other details are at the end of this post)

"The Eco-friendly Bamboo-Mud cottage":
My love for Mud houses is Eternal. I would do anything to stay in one. Because, for nearly 26 years, I have witnessed it's worth in the form of my naani ma's/Grandmother's home. It used to be cold in summer and warm in winters. Not just that, but we used to have a sense of overall well being for as along as we used to stay in that home. However, after my grandmother passed away, it had to be demolished due to various reasons. It breaks my heart whenever i see a cement home in the place of my grandmother's beautifully alive mud home. :( So, my wish is to build one someday.

Phewww.... enough ranting. Let's move on to My Mud Cottage Experience... (Pic heavy but worth every bit!)

The cottage is made of Bamboo with a Mud plastering. This picture shows the natural netted ventilation system of the cottage from outside.

(From inside)

A candle stand inside the cottage, made out of fallen tree branches. Brilliant!

Glass 'Skylight' panels in the roof are the natural light source inside the cottage. At night, you can use LED lights provided. 


Bamboo Shelves(upclose).

Cellphone images of the whole cottage sent by Asha. Because, i did not have a zoom lens with me.Click for larger image. It has one double bed and also a kitchen platform with a sink. The door in the third image to the right is of the attached bathroom.

The Clay water pot.

A small vintage looking glass window panel from inside the room. For a while, it transported me back in time! <3

The transparent Blue glass fittings in the wall which adds an interesting element to the interiors. You can even see through it. :) <3

After exploring the cottage, we got to relax in this rope swing which is in front of the cottage.

The gang set up a net and played Badminton!

You can even relax in this hammock like Jayaram sir in the pic, with beautiful backdrop which is near the main building after entrance.

Food! It was a yummy spread of Jowar roti, Chilli Peanut powder, Brinjal curry, Pulav, Plain tempered dal and Coconut chilli chutney which was the yummiest one i had till now! There were super tasty Papads, Chutney powders, Natural unadulterated Cow milk curd and a dessert too. All items were made with organic ingredients! Yum it was!

Another cellphone pic of me taken by a gang member while i was picking up an extra piece of the yummy papad. Ignore the ugly tied hoodie please. :P :D

And now....*Drumrolls* please.... The Majestic Indian Mudhol hound! Her name is 'Rani' (rightly named so). When i saw her from a distance, even though i am a doggy mom, my heart skipped a beat because i was alone and she looked ferocious! But, (see the next pic)

Once i called her name, She started wagging her tail and came towards me so lovingly that i fell in love with her in an instant! <3 <3 <3 Even though she hails from an aggressive hound breed, She was an absolute sweetheart! You can feel the majestic Aura she exudes. A Queen indeed. Total love!

Say hello to 'Rukma', the naughty, jumpy and artistic one of the lot. Artistic because, she is a camera enthusiast! She was so amused whenever she saw a camera that she tried to snatch both mine and the T.v cameraman's huge camera! :D

Meet 'Jaanu', a boy, the saintly one of the lot. (Picture a calm innocent saint in mind)

The Mighty Mudhol and the Mini Mutt! <3

While returning back, we saw these delicate medicinal plants being cultivated in a shaded setting.

They even made for us all an almost medicinal Bajji/Fritters with Ajwain leaf/Karpooravalli/Indian Borage for evening snack. Quite unique they tasted. (cellphone pic again :P)

And since the evening was getting really cold, we also had a mini Bonfire kind of set up made with dry coconut shells and coal.

The tall T.v anchor rode THE ROYAL ENFIELD!!! That was the moment i cursed my short height like anything! I seriously wish they made a 'Bajaj Avenger' type short motorcycles! I hope someday they will. :(

End of the day 'Gang Picture'. :)

This whole "Sukrishi Organic Farm/Food Forest" Experience has been the most Wonderful and unforgettable one i had in a very long time. I feel Rooted and Rejuvenated even after it has been weeks since my visit.

Do i Recommend? Yes Yes Yes. Totally worth it! Everyone needs to visit this place which reminds us of our roots and source. And also, since the chances of finding a Mud cottage surrounded by forest is awfully rare in/near a metropolitan city, you along with the next generation i.e., your kids can experience it at the 'Sukrishi Organic Farm/Food Forest'.

*It is nearly 35-40 Kms from their 'Organic state Store/Restaurant' in Malleshwaram.

So, if you wish to take a break and celebrate life with nature, they They'll have it arranged for you!
......................................................................................................................
Here are the details:

*The tour starts with Breakfast at the Green Path Organic State- Malleshwaram.
*A Session on 'Celebration of life with Nature!'
*A Traditional welcoming at 'Sukrishi farm'.
*Welcome drink and relaxation 
*A tour in the farm. 
*Learn composting,Rain water harvesting & Organic farming techniques.
*Play Nostalgic games from childhood.
*Enjoy Organic Lunch. 
*Sunset watching followed by fire camp. 
*Bamboo-Mud House to relax and rejoice.

Pricing for Farm tour

Rs.1​2​00 Per person (Inclusive of Lunch, Snacks and Farm Tour)
Rs.​20​​00 Per person (Inclusive of Breakfast, Lunch, Snacks, Dinner, Farm Tour and Night accommodation at Farm house)
Arrangements will be made if you plan to stay for a night at Sukrishi Farm.

Address:
Sukrushi Farm, 
Marasara Halli, Nelamangala,
Bangalore - 562123, 

Karnataka.

For location on Map, Go HERE

Contact no. +91-9986784447

Email: asha@thegreenpath.in
......................................................................................................................

P.S: How about making the 'Sukrishi Organic Farm/Food Forest' your unique New Year celebration Destination? ;)

--------------------*--------------------
Love,
Siri.

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Tuesday, December 27, 2016

My experience at the 'Sukrishi Organic Farm/Food Forest', Bangalore. Part 1 - The Food Forest.



Ever heard of a Food forest? Few weeks ago, I've been to one. And that too in Bangalore!

Yes, I visited the Amazing "Sukrishi Organic Farm" in Nelamangala, Bangalore. Mr. Jayaram, the M.D of the 'Green path Organic state' chain and Ms. Asha, the Marketing manager and also a very good friend of mine, invited me to visit the farm.

At first, i thought 'ok... it would be just another Organic farm among many that already exist. But, i was proved totally Wrong!!!

Once i reached there, what i realised was that it is not a regular commercial farm by any means! but mainly a Primitive, Self sustaining and Biodiversity preserving "Food forest"!!!

As opposed to modern Monoculture, a Food forest needs very little human care and provisions for growth. Because, it houses the 'Biodiverse' environment which provides almost everything the plants/trees need. Awesome right!?

The Sukrishi organic Farm/Food forest which is spread across 40 acres was where the foundational stones of the Green path were laid in 1998. Back then, it was a total Barren Land which no one found useful except Mr. Jayaram sir. Because of his strong determination and efforts, this waste piece of land is now an Alive and Majestic Lush Green Food forest.

Scroll through the pictures for a tour of the Food Forest/Farm and witness the 
invaluable experience i had.
..................................................................................

First of all, Meet Mr. Jayaram, a Lawyer in the past by profession, the Man behind all of this. He is the Happiest Man i've ever met! Always smiling and always ready to celebrate even the tiniest thing life has to offer. Love love loooooved him to bits! (And he kept calling me 'Kid' the whole time! :D) 

Inspired by his Mother Smt. Nagamma, whom he calls 'Mother of Nature', He started several Eco initiatives in Karnataka. His Aim is to inspire people to adopt an Eco-friendly lifestyle through easily replicable models of sustainability. And after meeting him, I can say for sure that he will succeed. :)

Say Hello to Ms.Asha, the lady because of whom i got to live one whole amazing day in my life! <3 :* She is 'Fun, Energy and Compassion' all wrapped in one piece that anybody will easily fall in love with! <3 and look at those dimples! <3 <3

Aaaand Let's Start the Trip!

We were a bunch of people from different walks of life and we all had a happy colourful welcome with the bougainvillea garlands which i loved so much that i decided to wear it that whole day! :P Because, vivid hot pink bougainvilleas are one of my most favourite flowers ever! <3 :)

And they showered us with loose bougainvilleas too! The Best Welcome I ever had! oh! And we even had an aarthi given which made us feel almost like goddesses! :D But, most importantly, it shows how much they love and respect their guests. 

After the lovely welcome session, we walked through these lush green(almost romantic) pathways to enter the Forest.
*Romantic because, the day turned cloudy with thick 'monsoon'y black clouds that made the whole forest look like a movie type romantic setting. :)

The first thing that cought my eyes were a bunch of these lovely white Hibiscus plants. They were of our native Indian variant which, i you are a regular reader, would already know how much i love. <3
If you are New here, please Read: "D.I.Y Ancient Indian hair pack recipe" and "Healthifying and Beautifying Rose-Hibiscus syrup recipe" to know my love for native flowers.

Now, this should definitely remind you of your childhood! right!? Ha... the yum yum yummmmmy sweet and sour Chinna usirikaya/Ari nellikai/phyllanthus acidus, a much lighter and sweeter country variant of  Gooseberry sprinkled with some salt and chilli powder delighted my tastebuds every single day when in season! *drool* *drool*

Sapota/Chikkoo/Sapodilla tree. Not really a fan of this particular fruit because most of the times, i got to have only the hybrid variants which taste lifeless. But, these native Indian fruits looked so beautiful on tree, that they did tempt me a lot because i remember from my childhood memories, how yum they taste.

Press! Reporters from Suddi T.V. were also there to shoot and feature the Farm/Food forest in their channel. Aaaaand i will appear on T.V. for the first time! Yaaayyyy!! A really funny incident happened while shooting. I'll tell you what it was in another post because, then, this already long post will seem endless. :D  

The T.V. show anchors and the camera man in work.

What do you think both of them are so eagerly shooting?

THE COCOA FRUIT! Yes! There were Organic Cocoa trees! They use these beans in the Brownies that they serve at their 'Forgotten food' restaurant. I am a regular at this place and trust me, thay taste real good.(Planning to review the restaurant soon!) :)

Asha broke a ripe Cocoa fruit and showed us. Don't you think the inner white segments resemble a Custard apple?

We did not just see the fruit, we ate it too! It tasted like a tangier version of our regular custard apple. Loved it! But, the meat was really thin and less creamy when compared to custard apple's. It was an unique unforgettable taste we got to experience and it definitely leaves you craving for more.

After that, we walked through some more forest pathways and reached..(see the next picture)

This bit of land where they cultivated Non-hybrid, Non-G.M.O and Organic Beans.

Asha plucked a few of them and told us to taste it. I was skeptical at first because i never had it raw. But, oh my.. it was so fresh, juicy and crunchy that i wanted to have atleast 10 more. <3 And because it was Organic, we ate it directly from plant without even washing. :)

And then, all of us walked a little more to reach...(see next picture)

The Rain water Harvest pond which is the main water source that sustains the Oraganic cultivations of this farm.

The worn out mini Open theater/stadium kind of structure in front of the rain water harvest pond. May be we can do some bird watching there...i guess.

And then this Lovely Japanese lady 'Rie Goto' of 'Masala tours'-Bangalore visited the farm. After travelling 180 countries, she decided to settle permanently in Bangalore, India and also adopted an Indian girl who is nearly 25+ now. She even worked with Mother Teresa! She definitely was an amazing woman. <3
*The Masala-tours.com website is in Japanese but has an option to translate it in to english. :)
*Here's her Facebook link.

She bought a packet full of Organic Non-G.M.O Adzuki beans for Jayaram sir.

And also some saplings of the same for the farm.

If you want to learn Organic farming or want to start your own Food Forest, head on to this farm because, they provide training in both! :)
For more information, visit Thegreenpath.in

 Hope you all had the same invaluable experience through these pictures like i did on site. And wait, this post is just part 1. There is still part 2 where i show you the Bamboo and Mud cabin for stay and the Canines i met and fell in love with.
--------------------*--------------------
Love,
Siri.

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