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FOOD & LIFESTYLE

FOOD  & LIFESTYLE
FOOD & LIFESTYLE
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MUST TRY PLACES FOR BRUNCH IN DC - SAUMYA IN THE CITY

Outsiders might think of DC as a city of stodgy politics with historical museums and all touristy things, but there is so much more beyond the aforementioned. While DC boasts of it's cultural diversity, the food scene here is next level. The variety of International cuisine that can be found here in DC and it's suburbs is staggering. One will never run out of options even after breakfast, lunch and dinner has been savored out.

As part of an awesome PR team I work with, I've had the pleasure to try out quite a handful of local restaurants. It was really hard to narrow down to my top favorites for brunch in particular, cuz each one was an experience in it's own respect. 

BUENA VIDA SOCIAL CLUB 

Located on the third floor of the newly opened La Esquina de Clarendon, a three-level concept which houses TTT Mexican Diner & Buena Vida Clarendon, Buena Vida social club debuted a weekend brunch buffet past August. Not exactly in DC but for all practical purposes in DC, Buena Vida was an experience.  Traditionally an all-you-can-eat Mexican  buffet where in addition to all the gazpachos, salads, build-your-own taco bar, guests can also enjoy freshly baked pastries and scrumptious desserts, this place should definitely be on your list. Think of rooftop brunch with a panoramic view and colorful decor- both of which make awesome photo opps. 

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TRAVEL GUIDE- YOUR TRAVEL ITINERARY FOR KOLKATA

Kolkata the City of Joy and home to my alma mater brings me so much euphoria and nostalgia every time I am there. Formerly known as Calcutta, Kolkata was a British colony for a very long time and you'll witness a lot of Victorian vibe across the city. I was in Kolkata for three years pursuing my bachelor's degree and I have such fond memories from those days. During this recent trip to India I managed to squeeze in a brief trip to Kolkata. It was a little over 36 hours and I did so much sightseeing that I hadn't even done in the three years of my college life. It was an amazing chic-a-blocked thirty six hours and I loved the hustle and the rain too. Yes, it rained pretty much the entire time and my team and I had the hardest time taking photos but we managed.

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HOW TO MAINTAIN YOUR MOM SWAG - STYLE SWAP TUESDAYS

"Werk it Momma, you got the swag"- it was such an exciting second when I had the passersby hollering and complimenting me on my outfit. To get noticed and have strangers acknowledge your presence is so exhilarating. It makes all your efforts worth. But this swag doesn't come easy and cheap. We need to stay abreast of pretty much everything- be it looks, skin, body, time management and everything in between. All this juggling can take a toll on your overall health. It becomes mundane and can leave you drained both mentally and physically. I am sharing some of the hacks that help me keep myself grounded, feeling energized and focused to keeping the cool mommy swag going. 

1) Meditate- nothing gets your pumped up stress levels down better than meditation. Concentrating on your breath, it's rhythm or following a rhythmic inhaling-exhaling pattern of breathing can shift focus from the monotony. It could be harder to concentrate at first, but with prolonged practice it will surely get easier. 

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J CREW dress ( shop same, shop mini version ) // MADDEN GIRL heels ( shop same ) // CHLOE sunglasses ( shop same



DUTY FREE SHOPPING - ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW

DUTY FREE shopping - a ritual that every traveler diligently follows. No matter how hard you resist, the flashy red logo is sure to lure you in to spend even the last change of the local currency. I am always tempted by the bright stores, neatly laid product on the shelves and the red tags with promotional discounts is always the cherry on top. 

While the idea of shopping duty free always gives me an adrenaline rush and why not- who doesn't like to save while shopping? I am the person who always likes to pre-plan my duty free shopping but a recent incident changed my entire perception of duty free and the money-saving notion I had for all these years. Fast forward to last week- I picked up a bottle of Lagavulin 16 years at Abu Dhabi airport for 110 USD. I felt like one happy thoughtful wife picking out a reunion gift for husband. Little did I know that this reunion gift would lead me to a " bury my head in the sand " moment. Should you ask me why?? - so the bottle I bought for 110 USD at Duty Free Abu Dhabi retails for 70 USD all tax included in US......bam!! Hubs has been buying the same bottle of Lagavulin 16 years for 70 USD for years and I had no idea. I guess it's time to keep a tab of where and how he spends his money....lol!

Well, that is just my story but this kind of led me to delve into the truth of Duty Free shopping, all the underlying facts and misconceptions that we I thought of otherwise all these years. 





HOW TO STYLE A DHOTI JUMPSUIT THREE WAYS

Today's post is dedicated to my Indian audience that seldom complains of lack of more Indian outfits and style inspiration here on my blog. Truth be told, I don't have as many Indian outfits here in US as it really has no use for me. Whatever many I have, I just get to wear them on festivals or at least I try to wear them for Indian get togethers. But during this trip to India, I was determined to shoot more Indian looks and today's post is the upside of all my efforts. 

My sister picked up this dhoti jumpsuit that came with the jacket for me at an exhibition a couple weeks ago. I was thrilled cuz it is so wearable both here in US and in India. Considering most of you sail on the same " how to style an Indian outfit different ways" boat, I decided to put together a few different outfits to give you some perspective on the different looks you could create using the same piece as the base for each look. 

It is officially the festive season in India and with so many events and party invitations already lined up, this post couldn't have happened at any better time. So this festive season, I would like you to revisit your closet, look at all the options you have and approach each piece in a way so to get the most bang for your hard earned buck. And if you are still stuck in a rut, cue my outfits below for some fresh perspective towards what you already own in your closet. 

Look 1- wear it as is 

This is how the set came. I like the little embellished jacket without which the jumpsuit would have been boring otherwise. I chose to keep this look low-key with the jooties and a pair of silver jhumkas. You could wear heavier earrings if you like but a necklace wouldn't be a good fit as it will clash with the jacket. 



A LILAC DREAM - STYLE SWAP TUESDAYS

There is always a dress in your closet that you ' simply love '. You know that the dress is your sartorial ally and will never fail you, be it good body days or bad. This dress happens to be that sartorial buddy of mine. It was an impulse purchase, but I don't regret my impulsiveness in this case. The dress fits me like a glove, the color is a dream, it is a great length, the tiers hide all the muffin top and bottom and the deep back adds to it's sexiness. Wish I had more pictures to show you how classy the back of this dress was. All in all it is that dress that I think I will wear everywhere and every season. 

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SHOPBOP dress ( similar here ) // SCHUTZ heels ( shop same)  // CHLOE sunglasses 





PHOTOSHOOT IN USA VS PHOTOSHOOT IN INDIA

This last trip to India has been nothing short of fun and adventure and quite a bit of traveling. I traveled across my own city Ranchi scouting for photoshoot locations and then to Kolkata and Delhi for more travel blogging content. While the process of the photoshoot here in India is relatively same to that of USA, it is fairly comparable as well. While it could just be me, my perception and the way I like to work, this post is not meant to offend anyone. 

Photographer/photography

While the photographer  I work with in US is pretty punctual, the ones in India seemed to be great advocates of IST ( Indian standard time ) aka a couple hours late. In US there is complete professionalism and we believe it is one's responsibility to notify the other in the event you were running late. This timelines was a no show in the photographers back in India- but  no complains, their photography was equally good and the results were phenomenal. They were much more courteous and addressed me as Ma'am which I'm so not accustomed to hearing here in US- here I am Sammy. It was a bit awkward but I enjoyed that #GirlBoss feeling. 

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RANCHI LOVE- photoshoot at the Ruin House

Ever since Jharkhand became an independent state 18 years ago and Ranchi was identified as the capital, there has been a tremendous change both in infrastructure and economy in the capital. Ranchi is no more what I left it as thirteen years ago. Ranchi is much more cleaner and greener. The whole city has kind of undergone some kind of metamorphosis. While I'll leave the infrastructure and economy discussion for a later time, the social life in Ranchi is worth looking into. It is undeniably on a all time high. New restaurants, new malls, new sports and games arena have popped up all around the city, rendering Ranchi slightly more metro. 

One of the restaurants that caught my attention in particular was The Ruin House. Located in the heart of Morabadi, this place is sure to leave you mesmerized with it's mixed vibes. The second you step in you are transported to the sets of a Bollywood movie. Each corner has it's own theme and the way the entire set up flows, you are guaranteed to be left captivated. With the big barrels and exposed brick walls, the bar reminds somewhat of an Irish bar. The hay roof perched atop the outside seating is so reminiscent of a village house. Talk to me about the small blue and white nook that is so Greek. So if you can't go to Greece, bring Greece home with this little corner at the backside of the restaurant. This place is truly full of photo ops. So, next time you are heading to this place do bring your camera and your appetite, cuz their food is amazeballs too. 

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