Monday, December 11, 2017

5 Websites I frequent for their Jewelry collection

I have listed 5 websites I like to frequent to check out their jewelry collection:
Though most of these sites sell apparel and other things, it is their jewelry collection that makes me keep going back for more. There are many contemporary pieces they sell which go well with any kind of outfit. Like any Indian girl, I especially like Jhumkis, Chandbalis, Temple jewelry and the like, which go well with traditional Indian outfits.

I never buy gold jewelry online. Considering how expensive they are, I like to go to the shops and choose from the collection presented before my eyes (sans digital media) and definitely after trying it on me, which I guess is true for most people. What I normally buy from these websites are mostly silver jewelry, brass jewelry or gold-plated silver or brass jewelry. I read somewhere that gold-plated silver or brass jewelry can be re-plated multiple times periodically to keep them in good condition; and that these metals withstand corrosion and tend to be long lasting, though I haven't re-plated any of my jewelry yet.

Sometimes I buy metal alloy gold-plated stuff but normally I try to avoid them. I especially like jewelry which have some semi-precious gemstones such as Rose Quartz (more on that later), Amethyst, Oynx and such in them.

I also found that these websites seem a tad bit overpriced, but then they sell good quality, one-of-a-kind sort of pieces that are difficult for me to find together in such numbers in local stores and it saves time to browse a huge collection put together in a single place (I have spent hours going around a single website though, but that is an altogether different kind of hassle). What is more important to me than accessibility is the fact that I like to invest in good pieces which are durable and so I overlooked the pricing aspect. I decided to be prudent and as seldom as possible with my purchases to compensate.

There have been times when I found the same piece across many of these sites, because the jewelry makers probably sell them via multiple sites. Also, I have felt disappointed occasionally that a piece didn't turn out how I imagined it would be based on what I saw online. I guess this happens at one point or the other when shopping online. These days I don't splurge as much as I used to. My shopping urges are under much better control than before which is definitely a good thing in my books.

P.S. The websites listed are to my liking as a Shopper out of several I have come across, based on my experiences. I don't have any association with any of these websites since my Blog doesn't generate that kind of traffic. I have listed them out of my own volition, since I believe finding nice things could be a delight to anyone. I am sure there are many more cool ones out there and I will probably find more exciting ones, but for now, this list holds true.

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Korean Entertainment

I have become a fan of Korean entertainment over the years. Which is hardly a wonder, considering their popularity worldwide now. It all started off some 5 years ago when a friend recommended the K-drama series Boys Over Flowers. Though I found it a little kiddish, there was something like-able about it and it was, well, entertaining!

Some other K series I have watched are Uncontrollably Fond, The Heirs, City Hunter, and Playful Kiss. Even though these were a little kiddish for my taste too, it didn't put me off completely and I was able to watch it till the very end. My most favorite ones till date are the dramas Man from the Star and Legend of the Blue Sea (these two are not kiddish according to moi and I highly recommend them) and I hear these were huge hits across China and Japan as well.

One recurring theme I find in their entertainment, be it in TV series or movies is that in their romance the boy is always smart, rich, composed and sophisticated, as opposed to the girl who is almost always portrayed as noisy, clumsy, not so good looking (they often call a perfectly good looking girl as not good looking!) and usually not rich. In fact, in most cases the girl is poor and struggles to make ends meet.

I have also found myself listening to a lot of K-pop even though I don’t understand the language. The music videos are good and the tunes are catchy. Tara, Miss A, Sistah and Sunmi are some of the artists I have listened to. My favorite Korean stars are Bae Suzy and Jun Ji-hyun.

I haven't watched many Korean movies though. I have only watched My Sassy Girl, Seducing Mr. Perfect and Windstruck. Speaking of movies, my appetite comprises of popular Tamil films and Hollywood movies. I go to the cinemas now and then based on word of mouth reviews from those around me and sometimes read reviews online. The last movie I went to the cinemas and saw was the Tamil movie Mersal and I quite enjoyed it.

When it comes to TV series, I absolutely don't watch Tamil serials. I used to watch them some years ago because my mom used to watch them. Even if a series starts in such a promising way and the premise is so interesting, as the series progresses, the female protagonist was always scripted to do something so stupid and annoying that I lost interest for all Tamil TV series since then.

I also used to watch some US TV series like RevengeThe Vampire Diaries and its spin off The OriginalsHomeland and Marvels Agents of SHIELD.  I am sure there are a lot more (and even K drama for that matter) that I have watched but these are the ones I can think of as I am writing this post. I am also a huge fan of the Masterchef Australia series, which I think has a good editing team. I am not following the current season though. Actually I am not watching any TV series now. In fact, except for Revenge which ran to completion, I am not up to date with any of the other series. I am seasons behind in most of these because I am into reading at the moment. I am sort of addicted to reading right now. Sigh!

I came across some awesome cover songs for some of the most popular, recent music videos in the US. The videos are by artists from all over the world and some are even by artists from China and I was quite impressed by them. I will write another post later containing some of my recommendations for these cover songs and mention some of the TV series and movies I liked as well. I think I will also include some Ice Skating videos I liked too (like Yuna Kim 'Imagine').

P.S. Needless to say, when I say Korean entertainment I only mean the work coming from Seoul, South Korea. As we all know, North Korea has a political climate which doesn't exactly seem to promote art.

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Job Switch

I have recently switched jobs. The decision to quit my old job and join a new one was not easy. It took a lot of consideration.

What made me go out there and update my resume in a job portal site to look for new job opportunities is that I had not really learnt anything new for quite some time with my previous job and in an industry like mine, that is a sure way of your skills becoming obsolete in a few years' time. Initially when I joined my previous job the learning was good. Along with the product that I was working on, I learnt a lot of new things of the industry standard technologies I was working on. I also learnt some of the industry best practices and the process in place seemed good too. But in recent times, things just got stagnant and it felt like I was doing the same thing over and over. There was something new now and then, when some new feature came my way, but mostly the learning was minimal and felt insufficient. I lost the kind of excitement to work that I had initially and I felt that I was not as productive as before.

But then my old job provided me with good work-life balance which is important to me as well. During the Interview with the new company, they kept repeating that it was a challenging role. It excited me and scared me a little bit at the same time that my work-life balance will go for a toss. Some of the technologies that I was going to work on were relatively new to the industry and also completely new to me so I would have to learn them from scratch.  But then there were already training sessions in progress for these technologies in my old job since they were going to transition to this new technology in the distant future, if not in the near future, albeit slowly. From what I understood they would perhaps start work on this new technology in a year's time.

Another major factor which got me thinking hard was commute. My new job location was twice as far as that of my old one from my home. Earlier my travel time was half an hour and my new job location takes around an hour to reach. So that is roughly two hours a day gone in commute. Although I enjoy driving my car to and fro work and have mentioned that it is one of the best parts of my day, driving in this kind of crazy traffic made me skeptical whether it will remain the best part of my day anymore. In fact I had a strong feeling it would become a nightmare on days when I get caught in some traffic jam, more so when I have to be on time to attend some important meeting or if I have to get back home on time. These new routes of my everyday commute are very congestion prone and totally unpredictable.

And then there was work from home option available in my old job which was immensely useful to me before. There were times when I worked from home for periods of several weeks at a time. Obviously when I start in the new place, I will not be able to work from home for a long time since initially there will be training sessions to attend which has to be done according to the convenience of those who would give Knowledge Transfer to me and then later on when I begin work on something, I would need a lot of support from the team that I would be working with. The transition to when I would be able to completely work independently will take a long time.

The job switch also marks my transition from a Service based company to a Product based company. As anyone in my industry could tell you, it is considered a good thing. Though not always the case, mostly it means more learning with more ownership, lesser working hours, better compensation benefits, etc. Needless to say, this new job offered me better compensation than my old one.

All these things left me in a confused state of mind. Even after I got the offer letter, I was a bit reluctant to join the new company due to these reasons. I guess everyone goes through this kind of thing when they switch jobs. There are various parameters to consider and it is difficult to guess whether the trade off would be worth it in the end and also to know for sure that you could hold your own in a new job. What about you? What are the factors that you considered when you switched jobs? Did it work out better than you hoped for in the end?

Eventually I decided that this was a huge opportunity that I shouldn't pass up. The Interview went on for more than four hours and comprised of two rounds of face to face Technical Interviews. Three days later there was another round of Telephonic Interview, which was an informal Technical discussion bordering on HR with the Director of the company. He briefed me about the organization a bit more, things I didn't know even after reading a bit about the company from Wikipedia as part of my Interview preparation. He also briefed a bit about my job role at the end of the Interview, after telling me that he cleared me for the position in the span of the same call.

I prepared reasonably well for the Interviews. I was confident through out all the Interviews, even during the difficult parts when I couldn't answer well and I think I maintained a sunny disposition of sorts and a positive outlook at all times. But truth be told even I was surprised that I cleared all the rounds since I took up this Interview after a very long time with my previous organization (four years and four months). This is the second job switch in my career which means that this is the third company I am working for thus far.

I am working in the new company for about two months now. There is loads to learn and there are still some training sessions going on. Contrary to what I originally thought things like work-life balance and commute are okay and definitely way better than I feared it could be. It is still early days, so lets see. They have promised me additional responsibilities in a year if I prove myself. Here's hoping that my new job turns out to be everything that it promises to be!

Sunday, July 17, 2016


I have been an avid reader all my life for as long as I can remember. But for reasons I cant fully understand, I find that my reading habit is on the decline. Could be due to the lack of time, what with all the responsibilities coming your way and all the challenges that life keeps throwing at you. Still, I think a habit such a reading should not take a back seat no matter what.

The past few years for some reason, whichever book I started reading, I could not finish it at all. This coming from someone who cant keep a book down once she starts off was a bit shocking for me and I couldnt comprehend why this was so. I did read something now and then and finish it, but it is no where near how it once was.

However, the past few months I find that this is changing. I am reading more. I am always reading one book or the other, some magazine or the other, some blog or the other and it  makes me glad. At the moment, I am reading "Eat, Pray, Love" by Elizabeth Gilbert and I couldn't have chosen to read the book at a better time in my life. I love it because it is about travel and travel to pursue spiritual growth in that.

Hope this reading streak continues. I plan to transition from reading for pleasure and onto reading more content driven books about a wide array of subjects. So here's wishing Happy Reading to all the people in the World!

Monday, April 11, 2016

Gearing up for the Summer

It is a bitter-sweet feeling that Summer is here. While the scorching heat, extreme humidity, make for the bitter part of it (let me tell you that Chennai, must fall under the category of one-of-the-hottest-places-on-Earth every Summer), there are several other reasons that I really look forward to summer every year.

Reasons I love the summer:
  1. Vacations!- If its summer, one is officially eligible for a vacation!
  2. Watermelon (juice- lots of it)
  3. Mangoes (the whole fruit, the juice, the lassi, some dessert- whatever form, which ever variety)
  4. Tender coconut (Sure it is available all round the year, but I am always inclined to indulge in them more come summer and sure enough you find that shops make sure to sell them in more numbers this time of year too)
  5. Cucumber (same as before)

Now it must be weird that I have given a separate point for some of the seasonal fruits each but that is just how much I love them. It is a delight to watch the markets flooded with all the seasonal stuff (fruits I mentioned above and many other Summer things, which I wont mention here by virtue of being lazy; some other time maybe folks). Making a note to self to indulge in a whole range of Summer Smoothies too with all these seasonal fruits and such.

While we are not in the peak season of the glorious Indian Summer yet (that falls under mid- May in the calender), I believe that the best way to tide over the hot, hot Summer is by practising a few tips and tricks- staying hydrated by drinking as much water and juices as possible, and on that note never leaving your house without a bottle of water, always having a vibrant, colorful umbrella handy if leaving the house, wearing Sunglasses, wearing light and bright colored clothing, staying indoors during the peak hours of the Sun, making sure to leave doors and windows of living rooms wide open during the late evenings, taking bath twice a day- once in the morning and once in the evening coz you tend to perspire that much (remember what I said about humidity?), and wearing the Sunscreen (I wear a min. of SPF 50 during these hot months). And of course praying to God that your electricity supply is stable so that the Air Conditioner works all night.

If we manage to get these right, considering all the other things that the Summer season has to offer (aside from the above reasons, the golden sunshine for one), I think we can all rejoice that Summer is here!