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What is the purpose of my life?

This article was published in +977 (a Nepalese Lifestyle Magazine in Australia) in  Nov/Dec 2014 issue.

977 Purpose of my life

When I was young, I believed that we were all sent to earth for a reason and that we all have significance in the world. I also believed that I would find my true purpose one day but as I grow older, I am not too sure how to find the purpose of my life.

I am sure when we were created, we were not meant to be just be born, grow up, get married, reproduce and simply die. There must be a higher purpose in life for all human beings making us different from animals. However, at the same time, living every day for so long, I haven’t discovered my purpose. Does such a thing really exist? Why don’t I know my purpose in life yet?

Like many of you, my day starts with waking up early in the morning, getting ready to go to work, breakfast , work whole day, back home, cook dinner, eat , go back to bed and the next morning the whole cycle starts all over again. Weekends are spent cleaning the house, grocery shopping, sorting the bills and fulfilling the social aspect of our life. In fact, nothing much has changed since I was a baby and looks like nothing much will change until my last day in life.

My life is so ordinary and boring if I stand back and look at it. It’s not that I don’t have fun in life, I do. I manage to take holidays, meet new people, explore beautiful places, enjoy new foods and explore the unknown but these are things everyone is doing and everyone can do. Therefore, I feel I lack a specific purpose in life.

I know I am grateful that I am healthy and happy in my simple life. Life could be worse if you don’t have your health by your side but I am sure life is not meant to be just this. Every time I read about achievers, people who excel in sports, science, music, acting or any other field, I feel lost because I know I am not one of those brilliant human beings, I am just another ordinary person.

It makes me sad to think one day when I die, I will not leave behind anything that people will remember me by.

I am sure there are many self-help gurus and books that say they can help to guide us but how easy is it really to find the purpose in life.

Gautama Buddha said “Your purpose in life is to find your purpose and give your whole heart and soul to it” and that is exactly what I am searching for. I am not too sure how long it takes but hopefully one day I will know the answer and from that day I will dedicate my life to my purpose but until that day comes I have decided to be satisfied with what I have.

It is possible that I might die without knowing the purpose of my life so I have to live every day as if it can be the last day. Until my purpose catches up with me, I have decided to be happy because if I am happy, then I can make others happy.

I am definitely thankful for what I have, my health, my family and my ordinary life without problems. Happiness doesn’t require me to know the purpose of my life. Just appreciating what I have, being content doing the right thing and thanking everyone who made my life better will make me happy and thus everyone around me.

Even though I may not be the extra ordinary human being, I want to be, I could be ordinary one with happiness surrounding me every day and it will be the purpose of my life until I find another one.

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Prisoner of darkness

This article was published in +977 (a Nepalese Lifestyle Magazine in Australia) in  Nov/Dec 2014 issue.

977 prisoner of the darkness

When I opened my eyes, it was dark and I was in a bedroom but not in my own bedroom. I couldn’t keep my eyes open because there was light coming from the side of the blinds. It was not much light but for some reason my eyes seemed not to like any light at all.

I felt nausea and my head was spinning. I felt weak and I couldn’t move my body. I didn’t know what had happened so I screamed and even my scream was weak.

Suddenly a man came running to the room and asked,” Are you OK?”. For a second I couldn’t recognised the man but as he came closer I could see his face. It was my husband. Once he came closer, all I did was hug him and cry.

After I calmed down and gained my composure, I remembered what was happening. My headache was getting worse but I was not panicking as I was sleeping in our guest room. I was not in the main bedroom as it was too bright and my husband thought I would sleep better in a dark room.

The day before I came home early from work because I had a very bad headache and I couldn’t stand to look at the computer screen. When I closed my eyes for a while, I felt better but when I opened them again, the headache was back. I work on a computer so there was no point in staying at work any longer.

I went straight home. It was getting difficult to drive but somehow I managed and reached home. I took two Panadols and went straight to bed and slept. After 3 hours when I woke up, my headache had worsened. I felt like my head was going to explode so I decided to go to my local GP. I had to wait for 30 minutes before I could see him and it was the longest 30 minutes of my life.

Finally, I told the GP what had happened and expected him to perform a miracle so that my gruesome headache would disappear. Over the years, I have had lots of headaches but this one was supersized compare to what I had before.

The GP told me that I have a severe case of migraine and the best solution is to take medication and sleep. Following his advice, I took the medicine he prescribed and went to bed. By the time my husband came home, I was so sick that I was crying.

He looked after me for the rest of the evening and I was glad it was night, as I didn’t have to worry about the light. And I was hoping the next morning when I wake up, there would be no headache and I would be able to go to work as normal.

But to my dismay, I work up with a stronger headache and I couldn’t open my eyes again. My husband had to take time off from work to look after me as I was not able to get out of the bed. When we talked to GP regarding about my condition, all he could suggest is to keep taking medicine and rest like the day before.

Even with a whole day in bed, I was nowhere near better. I couldn’t open my eyes long enough to talk to my husband or watch TV or do anything else. All I could do was lie on the bed and wish I was doing something more productive.

The next morning I was more hopeful and was so happy when there was no headache when I woke up. Hubby had to go to work so I was contemplating if I should go to work as well or just rest.

However, it took only 10 minutes for my headache to answer all my questions. Even though the headache was not as bad as the previous days and I was not in severe pain, I couldn’t think straight and for sure was going to be useless for the rest of the day again.

Whenever I could and my eye permitted, I Googled many times to find a cure for my migraine but my effort was in vain, as everyone suggested staying in a dark room with eyes closed and it would be all good. My question was how long I could stay indoors like that.

Being a very active person, it was impossible for my mind to shut down but my body needed the rest.

One of the websites suggested lying down and putting an ice pack or cold compress on my head and it did help with the pain but it was just reducing the pain, not curing it and I really was looking for cure.

Even though I tried my best, I couldn’t sleep the whole day and I was very glad when hubby was home after work. At least when he is around me I have someone to talk to.

It took full 6 days to get rid of the headache. It was not sever most of the time but I was constantly in pain. First time, in my life I felt the severe pain and realised how worst pain can go. I am praying that it will never happen again and I will never want to be prisoner of darkness again.

10 Benefits of lemon

This article was published in +977 (a Nepalese Lifestyle Magazine in Australia) in  July 2014 issue.

lemon 977

As the cold and flu season is here, it is a good idea to take preventive measures to make sure we don’t get sick. There are many home remedies that we could use to strengthen out immune system and today I am sharing the benefits of one of them: the lemon.

Lemon is easily available throughout the year, has strong antibacterial, antiviral, and immune-boosting powers and contains citric acid, calcium, magnesium, vitamin C, bioflavonoids, pectin, and limonene that promote immunity and fight infection.

Here are 10 benefits which have been attributed to lemons:

  1. Lemon gives immune system a boost with Vitamin C, an essential nutrient that protects the body against immune system deficiencies.
  2. Lemon is an excellent source of potassium, which is good for heart, brain and nerve function.
  3. Lemon juice not only encourages healthy digestion by loosening toxins in your digestive tract, it helps to relieve symptoms of indigestion such as heartburn, burping, and bloating maintaining the pH levels in the body.
  4. Having warm lemon juice early in the morning helps flush out toxins by enhancing enzyme function and stimulating your liver.
  5. Lemon juice helps replenish body salts especially after a strenuous workout session
  6. Lemon contains citric acid, which can be effective in treating acne. The vitamin C found in citrus fruits is vital for that healthy glowing skin while its alkaline nature kills some types of bacteria known to cause acne.
  7. Lemons contain pectin fiber, which assists in fighting hunger cravings.
  8. Warm lemon water is the most effective way to diminish viral infections and sore throats. If you have a sore throat, add the juice of 1 lemon and 1 teaspoon (5ml) of sea salt to 1 cup lukewarm water and gargle three times a day to diminish the burning sensation.
  9. A little lemon juice sprinkled on freshly cut apples, bananas, or avocados will keep them from turning brown
  10. Lemon strengthens the liver by providing energy to the liver enzymes when they are too dilute.

Take care everyone ,

M from nepaliaustralian

XOXO

Impressions of a first time cruiser

This article was published in +977 (a Nepalese Lifestyle Magazine in Australia) in  July 2014 issue.   

977

I have always had cursing on my bucket list but never thought it would happen soon.

During Christmas 2013, I was desperately looking for places to go for our holiday. After evaluating our list and considering our finances, we booked our first cruise on Carnival Spirit to New Caledonia and thus our journey began.

Once we booked and paid for the trip, it was time to do our research and I have to admit there were so many different opinions on the internet that it was hard for us to make up our mind on what to expect. We both decided that no matter what happened, we would try our best to make the cruise holiday memorable.

The first thing we noticed when we went to Circular Quay to board the ship was how massive it was. We joined other excited holidaymakers clearing the customs and boarded the ship. Our luggage was checked in and would be taken directly to our room.

Embarkation was as easy as giving them our credit card and getting a Sail & Sign card (Sail & Sign is Carnival’s on board cashless credit program, which allows you to charge all your services and purchases during your cruise to your room.) We were told to wait on the top deck where drinks and lunch was waiting for us until our rooms are ready and the luggage is delivered.

As we walked in, we noticed that the ship was huge and amazing with Christmas decoration everywhere. I was excited to see so many different bars, lounges and restaurants on the map. It was as if I was in a different city and it was going to be our home for the next 2 weeks.

Once we finished lunch, we were told that our room was ready. We got a room with a window and it was just perfect. It was not very big but enough for two with en suite, a big wardrobe, TV and mini bar. By the time we went to our room our luggage had already arrived. While unpacking, I was really glad that I didn’t need to re-pack until the end of the trip. I also didn’t need to learn a new culture, to speak a different language or to stick to transport schedules but could just relax and enjoy our time on board and look forward to an awesome time in New Caledonia.

The first impression for both of us was really good, starting from the nice lunch to the room, we were assigned and the things we learned. I was quite surprised by how much there is to do on a cruise ship. It is your choice, if you like to have a day full of nonstop activities or simply relax on one of the deck chairs or hammocks and read a book. Every day there is an enthusiastic voice through the loud speaker system, telling us what is happening that day, where we can go, what we can eat and what we can buy on an hourly basis so you are always informed.

We utilise all the facilities on board and were always busy doing one thing or another. My best place to relax was definitely the Serenity area and it was always fun to go and ride in the Green Thunder.

Food was always available no matter the time of day or night. We had most of our breakfast and lunch on the Lido deck and dinner in the Empire dining room. The few times we had afternoon tea, we were very impressed by the selections of cakes and fruits. We saw kids running around with pizzas and ice cream all the time. We had no complains about the food at all.

The one thing I really loved on board the Carnival Spirit was the entertainment. There was always something happening especially during the night that we had no time to be bored. Most nights we were going from one event to another fully enjoying each performance. From stand up comedian to hypnotist, juggler, Vegas style show they had everyone covered. If you are into trivia and games, you could always find one area hosting the event.

They tried their best to make the sea days more entertaining and full of activates to every kind of travellers. Apart from kids club for the young ones, they could be entertained in many other ways. They will definitely enjoy the rides in Water Park so just get wet. They will love the Chocolate extravaganza day and they will never worry you regarding food.

Port days were fun and well managed. If you want to know the details on what to do, please research before you board so you can Google the images and read reviews of the things to do in each island.

Disembarkation at all ports was easy and no stress at all. We really enjoyed different ports in New Caledonia but we were glad to come back to the ship and carry on with our holiday with awesome food waiting for us each time.

I might sound vain but I also enjoyed the fact they made our room twice a day. Every time we came back to our room, it was clean and the bed was made :).

After reading, my experience if you are wondering if cruise is your cup of tea, here is the list of pros and cons I experienced which I hope will help you make up your mind.

Pros

  • The most important pro of cursing is that it is definitely value for money. Your cruise package includes room, dining, most entertainment and many extras. Except alcohol and soft drinks, you don’t need to buy anything unless you are shopping. This gives you a clear picture on how much you are going to spend in advance.
  • Less hassle as everything is planned for you.
  • If you are a social person, it’s a great way to meet new friends. We made a few friends while on board.
  • No need to worry about food. It is always there and always changing. No matter what kind of taste you have, they cater for you.
  • I felt more relaxed during the whole trip as there was not much to plan and no running around. There are fewer unexpected problems to solve.
  • Pack and unpack only once.

Cons

  • Less exploration time as you are in one port for a day only. (May be multiple days depending on cruise but still less than if you go to one place only.)
  • Fewer destination options as your destination will be the coastal areas only
  • If you are after a quiet, relaxing getaway, then cruise may not be your cup of tea.
  • Motion Sickness can be a problem for many people. Do not forget to take some medicines of it.

I hope this has given you some useful insights and helps you make up your mind if Cruising is for you.

Happy Cruising!!!

Take care everyone ,

M from nepaliaustralian

XOXO

Confessions of a Shoeholic

This article was published in +977 (a Nepalese Lifestyle Magazine in Australia) in June – July 2013 issue.

Confessions of a Shoeholic blogI am sure most women are crazy about shoes and I am not an exception. I am crazy about shoes or should I say addicted to buying them. Owning countless pairs of shoes has not stopped me from looking for more. You always find a nice pair of shoes and how can a girl walk past the shops.

If there were a group call “Shoeholic Anonymous”, I am sure I would need to attend one of their meetings. This is how I would be introducing myself.

Hi, I am M and I am a Shoeholic. I love shoes more than anything in this world and when I see shoes in a shop’s window, I feel like they are calling me with soft voices saying “Wear me”. I am 4 weeks sober because I have promised my husband that I will not buy another pair of shoes for three months if I was allowed to buy a Prabal Gurung shoes from the USA. I am doing OK so far but it is getting very hard. The worst part is that I can purchase shoes without feeling any guilt.

Or I can be in denial and never attend these meetings :).

I justify myself that my collection of shoes didn’t happen overnight as I don’t have money like Tamara Ecclestone. It is my collection of over a decade now. And they are from all over the world. Wherever I travel; I try to get at least a pair to add to my collection. I was quite surprised that when we were in Europe, the shoes were cheaper there than in Australian so I had to buy a few pairs for sure. And how can I not mention America where everything is so cheap especially the shoes. I bought so many shoes there because,  when bought one pair, another was just a penny. Can you imagine my reaction when I learned that I was getting the second pair literally for nothing?

Buying a pair of shoes has always had some supernatural effects on me, making me super happy and super confident when I wear them. I believe that shoes also tell a story about the kind of person you are. Feet are our feelings and a good pair of shoes that are well-made, attractive to look at, and comfortable to wear tell the world what you think of yourself all day long.

I might be highly inspired by characters like Carrie Bradshaw from Sex and the City or Rebecca Bloomwood from Confessions of a Shopaholic but I know I live in the real world. I don’t have 100s of pairs of Jimmy Choos or Manolo-Blahniks. Neither will I buy the latest issue of Vogue instead of buying dinner, max out my credit card while shopping or become a shoe lady. But I just love shoes.

I have to tell you a funny incident regarding my shoes. A while ago I was lunching with my friend in a café. That day I was wearing my favourite suede shoes as there was no sign of rain when I left home.

But while we were having lunch, it started to rain cats and dogs. We waited for a while for the rain to stop but it didn’t let up and there was no sign that it was going to stop anytime soon. We were less than 10 minutes away from work and we were getting late so we decided to run from the café to work.

Instead of saving myself from getting wet, I took my jacket out and put it on my head to save my hair and took off my shoes and hide it under the jacket. Then we both ran all the way to work. I was really hoping that no one I knew would recognise me in the street. It was quite embarrassing to run shoeless on the streets but my brand new shoes were made out of suede. If they got wet, I was not sure what would happen to them. When I finally got to the office, my dress was wet but my shoes were dry, not a drop of water on them. I was really happy with myself.

If you really want to start a shoes collection just remember quality over quantity. A quality shoes with quality maintenance should last for years and that is how you build your big shoes collection. As an adult, if you look after your shoes, you can keep them for years.

I am hoping to keep adding new and lovely shoes to my collection and one day will have this lovely collection which I can pass on to my daughter.

If you have watched the movie Sex and the City and remember the scene where Mr Big takes Carrie to their new penthouse and shows her the new walk-in wardrobe, that’s the moment my heart nearly stopped because that is exactly what I want; a walk-in wardrobe with one whole wall just for my lovely shoes.

 I hope one day my dream will come true.

Till then – “If the shoe fits… buy it in every colour.”

P.S: I wrote this article few months ago when I had no idea that I will own my walk in wardrobe soon 🙂

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Lace in Fashion

This article was published in +977 (a Nepalese Lifestyle Magazine in Australia) in May-June 2013 issue.

977 Lace in Fashion

Lace detailing is absolutely beautiful and undeniably feminine and it has always had a particular allure in fashion and now it’s sexy, skin-tight & best worn with ample attitude. It was a textile that signified all that was luxurious, highly desirable and new.

‘Lace’ is a category that includes a number of detailed techniques, from embroidery, macramé, knitting, knotting and crochet, to guipure, Chantilly, Valenciennes and Venetian.

The LBD gets an even sexier tilt when you add a little lace. And don’t forget all the sexy accessories you can get in lace like stocking, bags, belts, shoes, scarfs, headbands, gloves and even umbrellas.

How to wear lace dress?

Colourful Lace

Colour is always good mood enhancer and it is same with a colourful lace dress.  Colours such as bright red or pink will give a sufficient statement to your appearance. Make sure you accessorise in neutral colours .

Casual Lace

For a casual look, you can choose to wear a longer dress with neutral colours. Choose minimal accessories to keep it simple, fun yet elegant.

Metallic lace

If you want something a little more contemporary, choose metallic lace for parties or formal occasions. Metallic lace goes best with black accessories.

Lace for evening

Lace goes perfectly for evening wear or formal events. From long gowns to elegant short dresses, lace will definitely make you look more feminine. Match the accessories and keep it minimal to highlight the dress.

Do you like lace?

Till next post, take care.

M from nepaliaustralian

XOXO

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Loving Nepali Culture and traditions

This article was published in +977 (a Nepalese Lifestyle Magazine in Australia) in June 2013 issue.

plus977

I have lived in Australian for over a decade and I have to admit, I love Nepal, its culture and traditions more than the day I left her.

It is funny to remember how relived I was when I received the visa to come here. It was like; finally, I was going to be out of Nepal, far from all the stupid traditions and cultures to a new land where I could start all over again. Even though I was very sad leaving my family behind, I was really excited for the possible future. The preparation to leave the country was done with high spirit and positive attitude.

Finally the big day came. Before I left the house, in a traditional manner, my grand ma put a red tika on my forehead, and blessed me with sagun. I still remember the time I spent at the airport in Kathmandu. I was a bit teary eyed while bidding good bye to all the people who came to see me off. I realised that day that I had so many people around me who loved me. I had my parents, my brother, my relatives, my cousins, my school friends and my college friends, more than 30 people there wishing me well and saying their good byes.

Travelling in a plane to Sydney for the first time, I knew I was blessed with loved one but still at the back of my mind, I was happy about my decision about leaving Nepal and coming here.

The first few weeks in Sydney were really exciting as it was a new place, so much to see and explore. I got my first mobile phone and it surely felt like my dream country. But then reality hit me. For the first time in life, I needed to find a job. It was quite an effort to work, to cook meals and study at the same time. I was missing Nepal and home a lot. I convinced myself that the hardship was just temporary and once I got settled, things would change.

Things did change for the better after I got a job and started making friends but I still missed my family and Nepal a lot. I was surprised that I was missing my morning ritual in Nepal, going to the temples with my dad. I was missing my mum’s puja in the morning, the noise of the chaotic traffic of Kathmandu, the vegetables and fruits vendors’ calls selling their stuffs door to door, the sound of temple bells, and missing all the festivals. Being far from home, I realised and slowly started to value the culture and tradition of Nepal which I used not to like.

The first Dashain and Tihar away from home were really hard ones. Even though holidays were the best part of Dashain and Tihar in Nepal, I missed the tika and other religious aspects of these festivals. I also missed celebrating my birthday in a traditional way, tika with sagun in the morning and visiting many temples during the day.

As time passed by, I started embracing Nepali culture and tradition and started following it as much as possible. I started taking down notes of what happens in our culture and it was a joy to explain to people from other countries the different aspects of Nepali tradition. It felt so good to see their reaction when I explained what we do during our festivals, wedding, birth and death. I realise that our culture is so unique and old that it is worth all the effort to preserve it

I started celebrating Dashain and Tihar in full swing and having more family and friends here definitely helped to make it better. Even though I am from a Newar background, I joined my friends when they celebrate Teej and love every minute of it. Living abroad definitely has made me appreciate Nepal and its culture lot more than before.

I went to Nepal and had a very traditional wedding and I was happy to participate in a very elaborate ceremony over many days. Recently, my brother and sister in law were blessed with a baby boy and we made sure we followed all the traditional rituals here even though we are so far away from home. He had his Chhaithi and Nwaran here and we all went to Nepal to celebrate his Pasni with our loved ones.

These days instead of getting annoyed by the tradition and culture in Nepal, I feel inquisitive. I always want to know more why we do Ihi, Gufa , Bartamanda, Saradha, Pasni, Nwaran or any other ritual. I want to learn the legends behind our every festival and one day wish to pass this knowledge on to my kids. I want them to be proud of Nepal and Nepali culture. Even though I am not in Nepal, Nepal and its culture and tradition will always be in me and I hope to spread this love to the next generation so they can be proud of our heritage, tradition and culture.

Do you still follow your cultures and traditions?

Till next post, take care.

M from nepaliaustralia

XOXO

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