Friday, February 19, 2016

Purisima creek hiking

The previous night Mr. Man had been continuously reminding me to set the alarm. We had a long drive to reach the hiking trail head where we should reach before eight o’clock in the morning. I didn’t even know how long and the difficulty level of the hike. I didn’t check the weather. In Bay Area, weather changes every moments, even 15-20 miles from home the whether could be drastically different. 

Anyway, we could get up early that Saturday morning.  We able to start early with my extremely unwilling son, who didn’t want to walk at all early in the morning. Keeping behind the freeway, when we entered the mountain road, I couldn’t make out how was the road. I didn’t understand whether the road was narrow or not, whether the cliff was gaping or not. Only thing I could see the dense white fog and the heads of the enormous conical trees through the cloud. 

Somewhere, the fog was so dense that it was difficult to understand the exact path to drive. Anyway, as I’m too expert to tell the direction even with Google map in my hand, I always completely rely on Mr. Man for that. While he was driving, I saw the board of Purisima creek trailhead. 

I didn’t tell him anything as he better knows the route. Since beginning he took care of checking the route, and he told that we are going to park our car at the trail head. We reached somewhere, which looked like turnout area, and he told that, that was the South parking area. However, we couldn’t see any of our hiking mates there. Though, we knew that they already reached the trailhead. Thankfully, the cell phone network was available , so he called other fellow hikers, and we came to know that we just missed the trailhead. Anyway, again turnaround and came to meet our fellow hiker. 
After exchanging greetings to each other we started our journey according to the map. The weather was very pleasant , not at all hot, rather a littler cooler than the our area. We started walking amid big redwood trees. Soon, the trail became so narrow, that no two person can walk side by side. One of our fellow hiker showed a distant place where we could see a little sunny area, and he told that we have to reach there to finish the very trail. There were numerous number of trails, we decided to go on one trail, while coming back we would take a different route.
First we started down the slope. As we were going down the hike was easy. I understood that while coming it was going to tough, and we would be too tired to take any picture of the magnificent redwoods preserve. The trail was sometimes narrow, sometimes full of dirt, sometime little steep mound along with lush greenery on both sides. Redwoods provide shade and habitat for many banana slugs, as well as redwood sorrel, thimbleberry, huckleberry, hazelnut, stream violet, trillium, ferns, starflower, and many more. 

The whether usually remained  cool, still we started feeling hot as we were walking. The dense forest is the home of rattle snakes, mountain lions, rabbits and other creatures. We were unfortunate (rather fortunate) as we didn’t meet any of those creatures, only my son could see some little rabbits. As he shouted “bunny, bunny”,we lost the opportunity see those cute animals. Only we heard the rustle of their escape. As we were going down, one place we saw some redwood tree had grown in a circle and inside a circle there was a big hole. That made a nice view. Through the woods we could see a little creek and water was flowing ,who’s splashing sound came in a resonance in our ears. Almost at the end we cross a wooden bridge and reached the parking lot on the other side.

Then the real challenge began, when we started  climbing up 4 miles with an elevation of 2000 ft. We took a different path, which was a narrow winding trail unlike the down road which was almost straight. Just in the beginning we rode a steep mound,which made me almost breathless, and the challenge began. The trail was so much twisted, that we had to finish a big ‘U’ to climb up a little every now and then. There we first met with the ‘Banana peel’, Those leeches were so big and so uncouth I felt like throwing up. 

While we went down, we didn’t see a single leech.The trail we took while climbing down was the outside route, from where we could see the mystical fog drenched Half moon bay. But while climbing up we took a route, through the dense forest, and all those banana peels showed up their faces. Sometime those really gave me goose bump, specially when I thought about my kid, who was in shorts. After sometime my son became so tired, that he refused to move. We had been telling him that only one mile was left. But climbing up even one mile was way more hard. Lastly he was so tired and pissed off, he started crying loudly. Then my husband took him on his back and walked few steps, which boosted his energy. Then he started walking. We were so tired that, I felt that we couldn’t  make it to the car park, when it was just few steps away. 

Monday, February 15, 2016

Repurposing rice bags

I kept some of the rice bags without thinking anything. Just I thought that, I could up cycle in the future. One day, while cleaning my garage, I just about to throw them in the trash. Suddenly, it came in my mind whether I could make cross stitch on them. Actually, just before I went to craft store to buy some fabric for cross stitch. However, the price of the fabric pulled me back. I desperately wanted to do some cross stitches. I took one bag, and very meticulously I ripped the seam , and make long fabric. When I tried to stitch on it with the yarns from my stock, to my utter disappointment, I found that it was impossible to stitch. I put away everything in box, and didn't open for a long time. One day, while cleaning my craft supplies, I took out the bag again, and tried to stitch with different tread, and I found out it could be possible to stitch on the bags. I almost jumped in joy. Then I up cycle all the four bags which I kept in my garage. Now all of them are added to my home decor. Here are all of them. I'm also showing how I cut the seam and changed them in totally different thing. No one could recognize what material I used to make the wall hanging, the table runners until I told. :)

You need the bag, a big scissors, and small pointed scissors.

Cut the seam

You need the small scissors to cut the chain. You can keep the chain also. I usually keep the chain which I an use in making bags.

Table runner

The unfinished wall hanging

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Carrot spaghetti

After coming home from school junior demanded pasta. However, he usually only eat pasta with butter and cheeses. I wanted to add some healthy ingredients into it. If I add chopped vegetable he’ll not it. Moreover, putting broccoli in his mouth is challenge. But, I had only broccoli and carrot in my refrigerator. So, I boiled broccoli, carrot with a whole tomato, salt , and one teaspoon garlic powder. Make a fine paste and used that as the gravy. After eating the whole plate, he told “Mom it was tasty”. My effort paid off.
Two carrots

One big tomato

One chicken breast half

Two cups of cooked spaghetti

Two tsp. garlic powder (or 3 cloves of garlic)

salt to taste

One tbsp. olive oil

Peel the carrots and cut into big chunks. If you are using fresh garlic cloves, then peel them. Cut tomato into big chunk. Take a sauce pan. Add one and half cup water into it. Add the vegetables. If you are using fresh garlic cloves, then add them , otherwise don’t add the garlic powder. Add the chicken chunks. Add salt. Boil until chicken pieces are tender. Scoop out the chicken pieces. Make a paste with of vegetables in a mixer. Tear the chicken breast into small pieces.  Meanwhile cook the spaghetti according to the instruction on the package in a big sauce pan. Drain the water from the spaghetti, and bring back on the stove top. Add the vegetable paste, chicken pieces, and olive oil. Give a good stir, and bring into boil. If you are using garlic powder, add the powder, and give a stir. Boil until desired consistency. Pour into a dish. Sprinkle shredded cheese over, and serve hot.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

DIY bangle box

Some of my friends asked how I made my bangle box. When I was making the bangle, at that time only I thought of posting the tutorial of the same. However, it had been several months, probably almost an year, I yet to post the tutorial. I cannot understand why I didn't do it. May be my friends are thinking that I don't want to share. Before they prove themselves right I should put the tutorial now.

For this you need:

One box which will be perfect for bangle.

One salt container

One thin and bendable cardboard

One kitchen towel roll or any other roll which is perfect for holding bangle

Decorative papers



Duct tape

When I saw that bath soap box I wanted to turn in to bangle box. It was so perfect for my bangles.  I used the salt container as the cover the box

Tear off the top of the box. Then cut into two exactly same size pieces.

The salt container was little smaller than the length of the soap box. So I used one thin bendable board to adjust the soap box like the picture above.

Cut two cardboard pieces for the two sides for the box. Cut out half circle of both of the sides according to the size of the roll which is going to hold the bangle 

Take another  thin cardboard piece. Cover the piece according to the choose of the decorative paper. Cover the out side , as well as inside of the cover of the bangle box. To set everything with glue I need to use four clips. 

Cover the inside of the of the box. Cover the inside of the two small sides and attach with the box with tape from outside.

Attach the top of the box with duct tape from inside. The box will look like this.

After covering with decorative papers.

Inside the box

Add caption

The finished product