DIY Honey Basil Tea Shampoo

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To have a clean dirt and odour-free scalp and hair, it’s very healthy to switch to a home-made cleanser at least every alternate days for best results. For a person like me who works-out everyday (except weekends, due to kids being home), using a regular marketed shampoo daily strips my hair of the shine plus natural oils and makes my hair dry, frizzy and duller looking. And with any physical activity of 45 mins, by the end of it we do feel smelly and sticky all over. So as our body needs a bath to freshen up, it’s just advisable to wash your hair with a natural cleanser than suds-based all the time.

Here’s WHAT I do (and guilt-free plus pleasurably):

  1. ¼ cup filtered water (if you do not have a filter, boiled water would do)
  2. A small pinch of tea leaves
  3. 1 tbsp Honey
  4. Few leaves of Tulsi or Basil (omit this if you do not have at home, generally all Indian homes do have this plant. You can use dried version of the leaves too.)
  5. A few drops of any Essential Oil (EO) you please – optional

Preparation:

Start heating water, once it starts boiling near the sides of the pan; add in the Basil and a pinch of Tea. Let it come to a boil and switch off the heat. The Tea will lend a golden hue as well as its distinct aroma. Strain this concoction. Add Honey and leave it to cool. Once warm, add the EO. Wet hair and scalp thoroughly first, then use this directly on your scalp. Yes, this is a runny cleanser. It’s meant to be like that. This portion is enough to cover the scalp. Massage well for a few minutes and rinse thoroughly. Follow it up with Lemon Hair Rinse (recipe here).

Here are the WHYs:

Honey’s PH balance is around 4 and our scalp’s is between 4 and 7. So being acidic in nature, honey maintains equilibrium of scalp’s oil ratio as well as fights dandruff. Honey is anti-bacterial, anti-fungal plus a great humectant. Thus, it moisturises the hair beautifully. All things we need in our shampoo for our lovely hair.

  • Black Tea on the other hand has a PH of 4.9. Again very suitable for maintaining acidic levels and pulling down bacteria formations. It also soothes any irritations on the scalp and reduces hair fall.
  • Basil is widely known for its disinfectant, germicidal and fungicidal properties. It’s a great stress buster so helps scalp in relaxing, thus more production of healthy hair. It contains Vitamin C, Vitamin A and Phytonutrients and the essential oils in it are excellent antioxidants to protect from any damages caused by free radicals.

Phew!! I’ve given you enough reasons to switch to natural and home-made cleansers. Not to mention the expense we pay to buy full of chemical shampoos.

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Question your Sons!

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Honourable Prime Minister Narendra Modi did aptly say in his historic Independence Day speech (2014) to question your sons about their whereabouts, where they are going, when will they get back home etc to reduce the crime level against the women in our country. These disciplinary acts need to be taken up by women and for women. There is a twisted view in the way these crimes have suddenly shot up in the country. Its saddening to say that we women have brought this upon ourselves, little by little, over a long period of time. It has been a gradual bending and pushing of ourselves down in such a slow manner, over millenniums, that it has taken a toll in the recent decades.

Women were an equal and respected part of our society, similar to men. Till we had the caste system and then gender inequalities and finally female foeticide. Inch by inch, we have been giving way to these so called ‘upper hands’ to deal us in the way they please.

Moral of the story remains same: take back the power which we have so trustingly and dutifully given away as alms. Whatever said and done, a child is raised by his mother primarily. So if she instils respect, care, equality for the opposite sex, we’d never be facing this today. She should teach her son/s to be respectful and to share(mind you! not give) an equal stage with women. But NO, she being a woman first adheres to the patriarchal format brought down by traditions and does not attempt to make the men in her family face what they have wronged against. Its beyond her, you see.    

A lot has been said and done about this. Its time to take the reins and act for it. Teach sons humility and daughters strength and courage to deal with adverse situations.

BRING A CHANGE IN YOUR BRINGING UP! and you will see a huge difference in the society we live in.

The Fairer Sex, really? Showtime then!

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We’ve always been called the fairer sex and being taken advantage of too, almost all the time.  Be it the lower strata of society, where they end up penalizing women for not being docile or middle to higher sections where they expect a lot of yielding and easily accommodating to all superior and male behests. Men simply can’t stand equal or stronger women, especially in a few countries. I shall restrain myself to talking about India here. The male sentiments and patriarchy has not changes much since ages, although you will see slight moderations and maneuvers here and there. The moment she takes two steps instead of one (more allowed like a huge favor), she invites trouble.

 

But the worse it can get is what is happening today with rapes and the fear that they will be murdered. It is high time that this country needs stricter laws with high amount of penalizing such as hanging to death if proven or castrating the offenders. The only way it looks now is the scare and fear option to bring back the balance on the streets.

 

Another thing which gets me is that why do we have to be so dependant, in distress, helpless and forlorn. We blame others easily – perpetrators, law enforcement agencies, and people we know who could have helped in the situation et al. Why don’t we take measures to safeguard and protect ourselves? Walk in groups(though it is not possible always, it can be done a fair amount of times), carry a weapon to attack(pepper spray, a small stick etc) Learn a skill – martial arts, karate, taekwondo, build muscle and most important – STAND UP FOR YOURSELVES in all situations. Charity begins at home and it will take a few in-the-face spats but it is ok to learn to stand and then to walk. It’s a step-by-step procedure.

 

Only if we BELIEVE, we will be able TO DO IT! So make yourself not only fairer but STRONGER as well. Leave no room for offenses.

The Devil Within…

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“The Devil” – “Lucifer” – “Satan” – “Old Nick” – “Beelzebub” – “The Prince of Darkness” – “The Tempter”…sounds synonymous doesn’t it? These are but the parallels of humans. And then we have:

 

  • “The Devil at large” by Erica Jong
  • “The Satanic Verses” by Salman Rushdie
  • “Demons and Angels” by Dan Brown     

 

All these most famous works, over a period of time, singularly point at one thing in particular – that innate urge to be wicked, selfish, to unleash the dark desires trapped within. There have been numerous such instances in the past wherein such emotions have magnified the temper of situation at hand thus causing a wee bit of upheaval. But this factor, causing a riot or not, can get the taker, its desirous object.

               What makes a man execute such acts that though it might temporarily satisfy the immediate want, cannot provide him with the assurance of its credibility? Therefore leading him to commit the forsaken deed over and over again. It can be anything from simplistic acts of thieving, lying through the teeth; to sadistic pleasures such as torture – mental or physical, acts of adultery or monogamy etcetera. There are always things which man craves for, either due to its quality of mystery so that he might try it and figure out for himself, or if it’s strictly prohibited for him. Either which ways, if the willpower and control get better of the sentiment in question, it can lead to havoc and imbalance.

             Not forgetting the ever so captivating works such as, “Paradise Lost” by John Milton and more recently “The Devil and Miss Prym” by Paulo Coelho, these pieces of art echo the basic human trait as perpetually unworthy of stability and definite character. Good values, morals and ethics are inculcated as a part and parcel of life, not forgetting that it’s the marked need for acceptance in the society in which we live.

 On the retrospective, there’s always a disparity that ethical and moral behavior, though imbibed with the quality of goodness, does not fetch one the required want of the moment. So better would be to indulge in the taboo once a while to get that kick. But the problem arises when man wants to repeatedly indulge and perform the forbidden.

                 The key lies in identifying the devil within us and if it’s docile and harmless, it can be pampered once in a while. On the other hand, if the behavior is diagnosed as detrimental, the best alternative would be to have it corrected through appropriate measures. 

The Mad Tea Parties…

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A Tea-Party always reminds me of the Mad Tea Party of the “Alice in Wonderland”…

There was a table set out under a tree in front of the house, and the March Hare and the Hatter were having tea at it: a Dormouse was sitting between them, fast asleep, and the other two were using it as a cushion, resting their elbows on it, and the talking over its head. `Very uncomfortable for the Dormouse,’ thought Alice; `only, as it’s asleep, I suppose it doesn’t mind.’

The table was a large one, but the three were all crowded together at one corner of it: `No room! No room!’ they cried out when they saw Alice coming. `There’s PLENTY of room!’ said Alice indignantly, and she sat down in a large arm-chair at one end of the table.

`Have some wine,’ the March Hare said in an encouraging tone.

Alice looked all round the table, but there was nothing on it but tea. `I don’t see any wine,’ she remarked.

`There isn’t any,’ said the March Hare.

`Then it wasn’t very civil of you to offer it,’ said Alice angrily.

`It wasn’t very civil of you to sit down without being invited,’ said the March Hare.

`I didn’t know it was YOUR table,’ said Alice; `it’s laid for a great many more than three.’  and so the story continues…

A bunch of us Super Moms here enjoy the tea-time get-together’s once a month, in either of our houses. Its real fun with letting down of hair, chitter-chatter, idling, setting up upcoming plans and of course latest gossip doing the rounds. All this in the quaint surroundings of our homes, with kids running helter-skelter into one room and the next. Teamed up with piping hot tea and small snack or two, its a quiet expression of familiarity and pleasant bonding between us.

We are 4 of us now but when we had originally started an year ago, there was one more who left for the US long-term. She is Mo and the rest of us abbreviated are De, Ha, Ma(for me) and Sv. Though we badly miss her, we’re trying to keep up the momentum and old charm and to make the do swell and refreshing.

We can have the –

                                   Image credit: www.food-4tots.com

the regular  – 

                        Image credit: www.garraways.co.uk

or the black – 

                              Image credit: www.wisegeek.com

Or even Coffees for sure and in that case, I’d have to rename this to Coffee-Time (;) )

A time-out with only girls can be really upbeat, energizing and invigorating. The giggles, poking, making fun of each other, all lift up to our spirits. At one point there is a round of naked truths about a snippet of our lives – it could be anything, hubby, kiddos, ourselves- anything we’d like to share among us or not is simply but a choice as it is in any friendship.

Now Ha has gone a bit busy with the tennis classes of her daughter most of the week plus me too with the skating class of my son. Yet, that shall not refrain us from meeting often. We will surely find time all can fit into and continue our reveries. What say Girls!!

Smell of the Earth!

Ever wondered what all the Earth goes through! So many trials and hardships, yet its ever so nurturing and providing to all. It has that space deep inside of her to transform all harshness into magnificent beauty. What it does is, deep within, it burns off all the inharmonious and converts them to all acceptable new with her undying love and support.

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So we too can borrow some of the Earthiness to change our patterns. It could be anything. Simple or tricky. At its simplest best you can try taking a walk, barefoot or sit on raw ground- smell the air, the fragrance of the mud, feel textures- graininess of the particles etc. See and feel how it changes you. Your thinking will take a shift by a big leap. If you are worried, you will calm down and come up with alternative ways to act. If you are searching for solutions, then too you will barge onto some excellent options. Or if you are feeling high and good, you will retain that and share it better with your surroundings for a long time to come.

This is also because we’re mostly cooped up inside our homes or offices that we fail to recognize nature’s bounty and ways it can benefit you. We get tensed, worried and wired at a drop of a hat! 

Give it a shot, you’ll definitely feel your spirits lift up!

 

Today is a new Day!

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Always focus on the present moment. Never in the past nor in the future. It takes away quality time either ways. While planning and wishing about the future certainly makes you ambitious and a great planner, but staying around too much into it can just make you dream of the possibilities rather than getting yourself into productive action to achieve what you actually want.

Again, thinking about the future should be more on the lines of the end result, such as, seeing yourself with a brand new Mercedes for instance. Give it minor details – silver colour, watch the logo, look at it standing parked at your doorstep – rather see yourself at its wheel. But instead what we do see about the approaching time is in this manner, somewhat :

  • First, the money should come in.
  • Fulfil existing needs and demands.
  • All of us should be keen to buy a Merc, not an Aston or a Volkswagen.
  • Oh God! he would never let me buy Silver. He’s always after the Black…
  • etc etc

See yourself where you want to. Don’t plan the road, the journey, the supplies for getting there. Those will be provided by the best way possible.

Now, delving too much into the past – why it happened, why me, did it have to, what good did it serve et al, too does no good. In fact it steals the remainder of the little positive energy you are left with. As you try making sense of the why’s, what’s, who’s, the real answer will always be elusive. Just get on with the fact that it did happen. Make a check list of how it helped you after it happened than if the events had never taken place. Must have made you stronger, courageous, calmer, patient, quieter, tolerant, not to trust easily – assess the strengths it gave you. And stop there. Hovering again and again into the bygones will only relive the pain, hurt, vengeful thinking, discriminating, anger, resentment and so on.

So, choose your thoughts wisely and focus correctly! More again later…