Hope you all are having a rocking 2014 and acting upon all your New Year resolutions 😉
I recently received an email to sell advertising space on Cheeni Thoughts from Media Discovery. Like always, a bit of digging up on good old Google led to some fascinating ‘discoveries’.
Media Discovery – What is it?
It is a scam company trying to lure bloggers into sponsored writings without informing the readers, that it is in fact a sponsored post!
Please see emails below for reference
What do they ask you?
They agree to pay influential bloggers an upfront annual sum of $100 to publish articles on a blog/website with a link to their client’s website. As a result, you will receive yearly payment (which is not a lot at all) until one of you decides to terminate the contract.
Where is the catch?
Selling space on blogs in such a manner is termed as Black Hat SEO. This in layman’s terms is using unethical means to boost a website’s ranking on search engines especially Google. It takes on average five to ten of these articles/posts before search engines catch them. Sometimes it can even be more than that but yes, there is no running away from it! Once caught, Google demotes the website and blacklists it. As a result, 80-90% of traffic is lost straightaway and the website in penalized. Media Discovery can easily terminate the contract with your website once Google spots this unethical advertising and move on to target fresh bloggers to splash up their websites.
Media discovery does not inform you about the risks associated with this sort of advertising on your blog. They are only using your website till it benefits them and their clients and then conveniently spotting other new blogs once search engines catch up with this activity. Media Discovery (New Web Ltd) is encouraging blogs to run paid for advertorials redirected to their clients website, without disclosing to followers that the content is an advert. This is in breach of the advertising industry’s code of practice.
Always research! Think! Don’t be fooled into a couple of $$$
Halloween is amongst the oldest festivals of this world, dating back to the ancient pagan times. As per legend, it originated with Celtic Festival of Samhain where people lit bonfires and wore terrifying attires to scare of roaming ghosts.
Centuries later, Halloween today, has evolved into an event of celebration. People dress up in all sorts of characters, children indulge in trick or treating and the whole community comes together to participate in the festivities with great fervor!
LETS ALL CHEER FOR SOME CLEAN, HARMLESS AND SPOOKY FUN TIMES! :p
Here, I am sharing some Halloween-ish memories from my friend’s party!!!
We had quiet an eclectic mix of frightening characters: Devils, Cats, Zombies, Black Angle, Witch on a broom stick, Dead Red Riding Hood and many many more! And yes, this is not the end – the decor and food fully complimented the spook-tacular theme! 😉
Whenever somebody would say macron, a rainbow of colours would flash in my head. It wasn’t until recently that I decided to set on my voyage of macron discovery – all thanks to a stranger that I bumped into…Cheers Macron Man! 🙂
Macrons have been around since 1533 – introduced by Chef Catherine on the time of her marriage to King of France. They are made of sugar, egg whites and almond flavour – very little has changed in this basic mixture throughout the years. It wasn’t until quite recently i.e beginning of 20th century that a chef, Pierre Desfontaines experimented with the colours and added flavouring in the middle of both the cookies. His idea of filling the cookies with chocolate ganache popularized macrons immensely. God Bless Him!!!
Now, I am sure after all this sweet talk you would be wondering where to get a flavour of this tempting and succulent goodie?! I knew it!
Here is a list of the best macron places in London – let me have your feedback if you have been to any of them already!
Laduree at Harrods
With only 12 tea places around the world, Laduree at Harrods is the safest bet to indulge in the authentic Parisian macrons. Flavours include: vanilla, chocolate, pistachio, rose, raspberry, coffee, salted caramel, liquorice and orange blossom. They have special flavours for Christmas & Easter: passion fruit and dark chocolate, raspberry, dark chocolate and lime, and dark chocolate.
22 patisseries across London / 277-278 Regent Street, W1
Yauatcha in Soho has been in demand for devising their menus on the lines of Wagamama and Busaba Ethai. It focuses upon Asian cuisines such as dim sum, tea, cocktails and customised Asian macrons. The flavours include: hazelnut, passion fruit, milk chocolate, yuzu chocolate, blackcurrant, earl grey, coconut, raspberry and lemon
Women are obsessed with great butts. A beautiful behind to serve as a hunk-magnet! When I was young, I always prayed for a small and flat ass so that I could wear jeans without attracting much attention from males around, especially in a conservative country like Pakistan. Even in this day and age, in many parts of the country where a woman’s behind is not covered she is either the subject of judgmental ‘what-a-whore’ looks or desperate wide-eyed and drooling males staring like a hungry wolf.
Thank God! Nobody in London has ever done that. Its a place where I can celebrate my natural ass-ET and as the Beatles put it ‘Let it Be!’ Happy, swinging, care-free and voluptuously exposed in figure hugging skirts,bodycons, peplum dresses, maxis and the best cut jeans!
Asses come in all shapes and sizes. And trust me as much as I believe in being naturally endowed, there is always room for improvement! No shortcuts for hard work bro! 😛
No matter, what your ass shape and size is, exercising is the best thing for your butt. Yes, BEST 🙂 Above everything else!
Take the 30 day squat challenge and let me know about the results! DO it religiously because HIPS DONT LIE!!!
This challenge seems to work amazing if complemented with a healthy in take of fruits and vegetables in our every day meals.
We all want a firm butt! Firm, taut and spank-able. Too much 50 shades of Grey! Just kidding 😉
Best of luck in getting a step closer to being wooed in Eminem Style!
The way you shake it, I can’t believe it I ain’t never seen an ass like that The way you move it, you make my pee pee go Doing, doing, doing
When I was 13, I had big dreams. Every time I looked at my Doll’s House, I would think of myself getting married by the time I was 21 and a mother of 2 blue eyes babies before I was 25. I held onto this thought for a while and then I grew up.
Now, I am 26 and looking back I wonder…what the hell were you thinking woman?! Enjoy life as a single jingle for as long as possible! Lately, I have felt I have turned 13 again…perhaps its a woman thing. No matter how perfect and smooth your life is, there is one thing that always tries to derail you, piss you off and frustrate you beyond any reasonable and rational comprehension. Again, a woman thing I guess…
I am getting a bit carried away in the flow of my thoughts.
Snapping back, I cant help but notice the growing amount of pregnant women out there. I often wonder is it the K syndrome? Ever since Kate Middleton and Kim Kardashian have announced they are expecting, pregnancy seems to be in ‘fashion’. The next big thing, just like neon colors this summer, chunky necklaces or fishtail braids.
Personally, I do not approve at all. I believe being pregnant is the most amazing thing that can happen to a woman and no lesser than a miracle. A blessing where you are facilitating and giving birth to new life – giving a part of you to this world. It is the best thing in this world for me after travelling of course 😉
Pregnancy needs to be celebrated and not excessively commercialized. From expecting celebrities to marketing companies targeting mothers-to-be, everything involves making money. Increasing revenues. Earning profits.
Be it mama blogs, specially packaged holidays for couples, specific magazines, celebrity endorsements – they all heavily try to target mothers-to-be in an attempt to flourish their businesses.
Companies are going to all ends to exploit the pregnancy market. Many brands hand-out free samples to mothers in maternity wards. Hospitals around the world give out formula milk samples which have attracted fierce criticism from Breastfeeding advocates as it indirectly encourages bottle-feeding.
Pregnant women consciously and subconsciously are looking for products to take care of themselves and the baby. In my opinion, they are a soft target for big companies and strategies are devised to lure them into excessive buying by doing the following:
Showing Beautiful Images
A woman wants to feel beautiful. Always! And if you make her believe she is beautiful or could be then BINGO! The trophy is yours. Companies selling maternity clothes, workout DVDs for pregnant women fully use this to their advantage. Maternity clothes are up-to date, in line with latest trends and what celebrity mummies-to-be are wearing, conveying an image that a pregnant body needs to be enhanced by specific cuts and styles.Fitness DVDs on the other hand are designed to make a pregnant woman feel fit and in shape when she is gaining kilos every month.
Pregnancy takes its toll on a woman’s body. Many women complain about tiredness, swollen and achy hands and feet and sometimes even back and tummy aches. This is what many wellness and spa brands exploit – Imagine selling comfort to a woman and communicating physical relief when she is going through these draining pregnancy pains.
Playing with the Nesting Instinct
Women by nature like to see things arranged in a nice order (most of them ;)). During pregnancy (as depicted by studies), this urge reaches a higher level to get everything perfect before the baby’s arrival…
House needs to be baby friendly, nursery needs to be set and everything that the baby would need, has to be present! AT ALL COST!
Many cleaning products can be marketed with tag lines ‘safe for use when pregnant’ complemented by showing images of houses and rooms that are safe for a baby.
The Hubby Card
Woman are notorious for their mood swings. And sometimes even a genuine reaction is said to be a PMS symptom. Sigh 😀
During pregnancy, women are exhausted and physically drained. They often feel annoyed and grumpy and yes rightfully so 😉
Husbands are willing to spend a bit more to facilitate darling wifey. Companies often market to men falling in the 25-40 age range with key words such as ‘comfort’, ‘stress-free’, ‘peaceful’, ‘relaxing’ to trigger and influence a man to buy something extra for his pregnant wife.
Everybody around me is pregnant or getting married. I had been wanting to write about the pregnancy market for a while, hope you enjoyed. Wishing you a blessed motherhood! Lots of love and prayers! xxx
I had boycotted bananas for a long time before I began training. On the strict orders of my instructor I started having a banana between lunch and training. Frankly speaking, I love them now owing to their numerous health benefits and NO! I am not even a monkey. Not yet…
Here is quick look at how beneficial bananas are for the human body and otherwise:
Source of Fibre
A single banana has about 3 grams of fibre. Dietary fibre helps in feeling fuller longer and also keep digestive processes running efficiently.
Satisfy your sweet tooth
An average banana has 110 calories and can fulfill your sweet tooth cravings without ruining your diet and training.
As per a research by Colorado State University, potassium is essential for a smooth nerve and muscle function. It also facilitates the balance of fluids in the body along with preventing painful cramps after rigorous exercise.
An average banana has approximately 400 mg potassium packed in it!
Fat & Cholesterol
Bananas are completely free from any fat and cholesterol and are a great natural and healthy diet!
Mashed bananas are one of the most widely used baby foods especially when they are introduced to solid foods. They are easy to digest and a source of important nutrients when suffering from indigestion or a virus without straining the stomach too much.
Manganese aids in bone health and speedy metabolism. Bananas are a great source of manganese, as one medium banana provides about 3 mg. Adults on average need 1.8 and 2.3 mg of manganese daily.
Carbs are instant energy. Eating a bananas before or after a workout is the best way to feel energized!
Vitamin C & Vitamin B-6
An average banana has 10 mg of vitamin C which boosts immune system, cell health and improves and facilitates the absorption of other nutrients.
Our body needs vitamin B-6 to grow new cells. An average banana supplies 35% of daily B-6 requirement
Overcomes Depression & helps in reducing PMS symptoms
Bananas help combat depression due high levels of tryptophan, which is converted into serotonin ( the happy-mood brain neurotransmitter).
Moreover, it not only lifts your mood but also reduce PMS symptoms, as it regulates blood sugar and produces stress-relieving relaxation. You listening ladies? 😉
Banana skin relieves against itching as a result of insect bites.
Bananas aid in lowering body temperature and can be eaten when running a fever or just to cool down on a hot day! 😉
It helps in quitting smoking as it contains high levels of potassium and magnesium which helps in quitting.
Helps in removing a wart by putting the inside of a banana peel on the wart and tapping it.
Rubbing the inside of banana peel on leather shoes and handbags makes them shine instantly!
Bananas can be eaten and used in multiple forms! A banana on its own, mixed in a fruit salad, as an ingredient in muffins (when you are not watching your calories as such), frozen yogurt, smoothies and the list is never ending!!! 🙂
They makes a great, healthy and a nutritious snack. Apart from this, from alleviating the mood to making your handbags/shoes shine! Bananas are awesome! And oh! who doesn’t like witnessing banana peel falls? 😛 Its been a while since I have been a spectator to one..
That’s it folks! Hope you are now looking at bananas in a different light!
Remember! a banana day is surely enough to keep the doctor away…xxx
I had been planning to go to Istanbul for ages. Finally, my dream shaped into reality as I landed in Istanbul with 4 other girl friends from all over the globe.
Istanbul is the largest city of Turkey and often referred to as the historic, cultural and economic hub which connects Europe to Asia. The city is mesmerizing.
Here is a list of my favourite places in Istanbul that you definitely should include in your ‘things to do in Istanbul’ list!
Blue Mosque or Sultan Ahmed Mosque
The mosque was built from 1609 – 1616 under the regime of Ahmed I. It is famously referred to as Blue Mosque because of the blue tiles on the walls of its interior. It is a popular tourist destination for both Muslims and non-muslims. It is open 24 hours a day there is no entry ticket. The magnificent architecture brings back memories of past glories and empires – the design is a combination of Ottoman and Byzantine eras.
Hagia Sophia is a gorgeous Church from the Byzantine regime. It was constructed in 5 years from 532 till 537. After the Turks conquered Constantinople (Istanbul) in 1453, it was converted into a Mosque from a Church.
In 1935, it was converted into a museum – carpets from floor and white plaster from walls was removed thereby showing off the opulent mosaics and decorations.
The Sultans (Royal Turkish Family) lived in Topkapi Palace for around 400 years, before moving to the grand Dolmabache Palace in 1853. It is one of the oldest Palaces and enjoys views of Bosphorous, Marmara Sea and Golden Horn. Topaki was not just a royal residence but also the hub of all state functions and entertainment for the elite royals.
Topkapi was converted into a museum in 1924. It was listed as a UNESCO world heritage site in 1985. Presently, Topkapi Palace is an eminent tourist attraction and contains holy relics such Prophet Muhammad’s (P.B.U.H) sword and cloak.
Grand Bazaar or Covered Bazaar is one of the largest covered markets of the world. With over 5000 shops, 60 streets – it is the focus of every tourist visiting Istanbul. It is populated with a wide variety of carpets, jewellery, antiques, hand-painted ceramics, painted glass lamps and fake branded hand-bags shops. The Bazaar was enlarged in 16th century and went a major restoration following an earthquake in 1894. Today, it still stands with a wide variety of stalls where all you hear is the loud roar of bargains….
Bosphorus Trip by Ferry
A brilliant sight-seeing tour where you see the connection between Europe and Asia. It is an experience that you can’t afford to miss if in Istanbul ever! You get to admire splendid views of European Side, Dolmabache Palace, Rumeli Fortress, the Bosphorus Bridge, Asian Side and more.
Taksim is a major tourist district and is located in the centre of European part of Istanbul. It is renowned for its restaurants, hotels, cafes, shopping outlets and night clubs. The street never sleeps! It is always bustling and is more active and vibrant after sunset.
This is the largest of the hundreds of cisterns that lie beneath Istanbul. It was built in 6th century during the reign of Byzantine Emperor Justanian I.Cistern stored water for the royal palace and surrounding builidings.It was ignored and forgotten after the Ottoman conquest and it became a dumping store for corpses and other sorts of useless junk. It has been restored 3 times till date.
The cistern was used as a location for the 1963, James Bond film From Russia with Love . In the film, it is referred to as being constructed by the Emperor Constantine, with no reference to Justinian.
It is one of the most stunning Palaces in the world. It was the royal residence and administrative ground for the Sultans during the last years of Ottoman Empire. When the Turkish Republic was found, Mustafa Kamal Ataturk transferred all government functions to the youthful capital but on his visits to Istanbul Ataturk occupied only a small room at Dolmabahce Palace as his own. He entertained various state guests at the palace.
His room is still in the same way as it was when he passed away. Ataturk spent most of his illness period in the palace . After his death, on 10th of November 1938 at 9:05 AM, all the clocks in the palace are stopped at this time. It is now a museum and is symbol of great respect and reverence for Turkish people.
Spice Bazar was built in 1664 and is located at the south of Galata Bridge. It is a delicate reminder of the flavor of the east with fragrant spices adding a unique flavor to the ambiance around the area.
Apart from spices, nuts, jams, dried fruits are amongst the other edibles present in the market.
Turkish Hamam or Turkish Bath is a form of ancient Turkish ritual. It is a variant of sauna, Russian bath and steam bath.
It is a mode of cleansing and scrubbing the body and became extremely popular in the Victorian time. A Turkish bath is similar to a sauna but is more related to ancient Roman and Greek bathing practices The person taking the bath, relaxes in a warm room which is heated by hot air where he undergoes scrubbing and massage followed by a cooler room where the person is splashed with cold water. It is a highly relaxing experience and truly one of its kind…
And now something about the people of Istanbul…
People of Istanbul are extremely hard to categorize. If on one side we had people yelling at us in Trams in Turkish (literally) for just having a normal conversation then on the other hand, women were defending us and standing up for us by saying ‘they are on a holiday, let them enjoy!’
Another story that I would never forget is a random guy standing up for us and telling 2 teenage boys off when they started bumping into my friend in an extremely packed train. One more incident that I definitely have to mention is our visit to Cistern where at the end of the tour, you can dress up in traditional Turkish attire and get your photograph taken. We got the professional photographs taken. On request of one of my friends, I was about to take a photograph of her from her camera when suddenly a middle-aged person started yelling at me and held his arm high up in the air, in an attempt to scare me that he is about to slap me. This was the worst part of our trip. Obviously the threat had the complete opposite reaction and he got retaliation from 5 girls, almost his grand-daughters age doing the same.
Overall, it was extremely endearing to see strangers stand up for us in front of annoyed Turks.
Before going, we were told Turkish people are extremely vociferous. Little did we know, phrases like: ‘Cindrella, welcome to paradise!’ , ‘Annn-gelll’ , ‘Angelina’ , ‘You like flower’ would be the highlight of our trip.
Thats it folks! Pack your bags and head out to terrific turkey! It is awesome.Hope you enjoyed the post and definitely hoping you enjoy your trip as well 😉 xxx
Green tea originated in China and is extremely popular in the contemporary world. Chinese have been drinking Green Tea for thousands of years due to the drink’s innumerable healing and health benefits.
So what does green tea do?
Ever since I can remember I have been hearing stories about how green tea burns fats and slims you down. It affected me so much that I started drinking 2 cups until I was told, 1 cup has the same effect has multiple!
A study of overweight men in US reported that men with same diet routines and exercise regimes burnt 200 more calories per day after they started consuming green day and also increased their energy levels.
Oxidation damages healthy cells of the body and have been associated to illnesses like cancer, heart disease, and strokes.The antioxidants present in green tea help fight against cancerous cells.
Scientists at the University of Strathclyde found that, delivered to skin cancer tumours in concentrated doses in a laboratory test, EGCG (antioxidant present in green tea) eradicated 40 per cent of them, while an additional 30 per cent were reduced in size.
Green tea helps clean the teeth because of the presence of fluoride. Fluroide kills bacteria in the mouth that causes plaque and cavities. As a result, green tea is beneficial in maintaining healthy teeth and oral hygiene. It also helps in curing bad breath as it has high levels of an antioxidant, called polyphenols. Polyphenols attack bad breath by deactivating sulphur compounds produced by the bacteria.
Cholesterol is a fatty substance called a lipid, made in the liver. High cholesterol leads to a lot of other illnesses. Drinking green tea frequently can benefit people with high cholesterol levels as it lowers the bad cholesterol (LDL) levels and prevent the accumulation of blood clots in the body.
The Peking Union Medical College in Beijing analysed the results of 14 random trials in which participants drank green tea ranging from three to 12 months. The study found that on average, green tea was shown to reduce total cholesterol by 7.2 milligrams.
What are you waiting for? Want a cuppa green tea? GO ON THEN! xx
Last year I went to Kiev with my parents. No, you didnt get that right, it was not to watch the final of Euro Cup 2012! :p
It was a short and sweet trip to see family members living there and add a new place to my travelling portfolio.
Wizz Air flies directly from London to Ukraine and my ticket costed around a £100 – booked it a month before! Cheapest air ticket till date…
While checking in, my mother’s hand carry trolley was said to be higher than the allowed size…but how? we measured it at home! ‘Its the wheels!’ the guys at the counter snapped. Eventually, after paying £50 we were on our way to Kiev – my father ten seats behind me on the left, my mother fifteen side ahead of me on the right, Cheers budget airlines! Lets wizz through the air now.
Upon reaching the immigration counter in Kiev, three ‘green’ passports caused a high level alert in the least busy airport I have been to in my entire travelling history. And I have traveled quite a lot! The person at the counter took our passports to some room behind him. He stayed there for 2 hours while we waited…We were told they were being photo-copied (lazy machine I guess) as Pakistan was on the list of most dangerous countries in Kiev.
Finally we were allowed to enter Ukraine! Yayyy…
Kiev is a city of gardens, cathedrals, museums and and and beautiful women. Seriously, an average woman in Kiev is around 5’8 and watching their slender legs as they walked around was one of the highlights of my trip – in a very clean, non-sleazy way.
Below are some memories from Kiev and the places I highly recommend to visit
1.Kiev-Pechersk Lavra – Caves Monastery
This was built by Kiev monks back in 1051. It is considered as a holy place and many monks are buried in these caves.
2.Mykola Syadristy Microminiatures Museum
Something very unique and different. Art is depicted on strands of hair, needle, grain of rice etc. Microscopes help to see these novelties.
Unfortunately, I could not take any photos of miniature drawings and cravings done by Ukrainian artists! But here are some images of the museum that I found online
3. St. Michael’s Cathedral
A lovely, small church with a lot of history. There is no entry fee for this.
4.Great Patriotic War Museum
Depicts vast collections of world war 2 artifacts, photos and vehicles. If you do not speak Russian/Ukrainian try and take a language translator or some translation device with you. Entry is very cheap and this museum is definitely worth a visit! DO GO!
5. Khreshchatyk Street
It is refereed to as the Ukrainian version of ‘Shanzelize’ street in Paris, France. Surrounded by shopping centers, banks, restaurants, it serves as a great commercial hub for both tourists and locals. It just never sleeps…lights, people, cars keeping moving from one end to another – bustling with life!
6. Rodina Mat (Motherland)
Please do go to the top of the statue! Elevators, walks and after taking a couple of street laders, you finally get to the top. The view from here is spectacular!
Made available to the public on 7th May 1905 (constructed between 1902 and 1905), the Kyiv Funicular connects Uppertown and the lower commercial area of Kiev. The ticket is $0.20 one way!
8.National Taras Shevchenko University of Kyiv
Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv is among the oldest universities in kiev, Ukraine. Fuunded in 1834, the University has made a commendable contribution to the education in Ukraine.
9. Touristy Shops
There are plenty of touristy shops with lots of souvenir around the main city center. Loved them!
10. Founder’s Monument
The monument is sculptures of 4 siblings: 3 Princes and one Princess, who was founded city at 6th centuries AD. Many people believe it is more of a myth than reality.
11. Eternal Glory Park
This is dedicated to the soldiers of the nation in the “Great Patriotic War” and the actual complex is 9.5 hectares. The fire burns here, day and night…eternally!
Other than these, YOU’VE GOT TO SEE places, below are some sites and places I discovered while walking and driving around the historic city of Kiev! Some of favourite sights…
I would have taken more food photos if i knew I would blog about it one day! 😉