Home   |  Issues  |  The Daily Star Home | Volume 2, Issue 11, Tuesday September 7, 2004







Floral magic

Let's face it…nothing beats the magic of flowers! Flowers have a magical ability to create ambience and mood. With so many artificial things making appearances in life, plastic potted plants and even artificial flowers have entered our life a long time before. 'Artificial' stuff do have certain advantages; for instances, you don't have to devote your time or energy to maintain them, water them, or even check for weeds. An occasional dusting, by the maid, relieves them of dust and they're as good as new, and none's the wiser. That's what you think. Truth is, these artificial flowers have become so common they're probably available at 20 taka a bunch and seen almost everywhere.

Now, now… obviously you don't want your home looking like any other home; everyone likes to be unique and if there are no floral trends going around at the moment, why not take a step and make one? Start off, and you could be the next person setting the trend of 'fresh floral arrangements' instead of the dull plastic ones, which have started to hurt our eyes. You know all that time you actually spend agonising about how the dinner party/ casual lunch decorations should be? The theme you should follow; whether to keep it simple or go formal? Well, use flowers anyway you like, and you can achieve the perfect mood that you're looking for. For a formal dinner create a centrepiece for your table using blood red, long stemmed roses arranged tastefully in a dark coloured vase.

Ceramic vases are considered all right for casual lunches, but for a more formal dinner look, I'd recommend dark brass vases. Take care with the lighting, and arrangement of flowers. Tastefully arranging them in a vase, or around the room is a good idea, but make sure you take at least some time off to do it yourself. That way you can ensure that the flowers are handled with care, and also be satisfied with the end results. For lunches, bright flowers set a cheerful mood, while dark flowers (like blood red roses) do add an atmosphere of mystique at dinner parties. Don't create centrepieces for lunches…instead leave small floral arrangements all over the room. Take care that you use flowers that complement each other, in case of both colour and smell. Leave windows open during lunches, and dim the lights during dinners.

Another thing, before I end. Flowers don't always have to be necessarily associated with parties. Flowers around the house, with their beauty and aroma, help in a general feeling of 'well-being'. Even a half bloomed rose, kept in a glass of water in your room one night, can overwhelm you with its fully bloomed beauty the next morning. Even working on a simple flower display can be considered as a form of art. With so many hartals coming up, and so much free time on your hands, get a mixed bunch of flowers; get your cases and scissors out. Snip, snip…and get to work on those floral displays!

By Jennifer Ashraf

Check it out

Diet counselling centre

Balanced menu is rarely a part of Bengali lifestyle, which is probably why diet counselling is not something we hear very often in Bangladesh. As we all know undue attachments for food leads to certain ailments. Maintaining a simple diet chart prepared by the experts can be a good way to stay fit. Diet Counselling Centre is one such place in the city that provides this facility.

It is an effort of nutritionist Shermin Akhter. "I used to do nutrition related research. All my researches were field based. After a while I realised that people in Bangladesh are not at all conscious about their diet", Akhter tells us. Having special expertise on the area she decided to open a centre where counselling on diets will be provided. The centre started its operation in this June. Currently they have 6 experts all having nutrition background.

Obesity, food allergy, anaemia, cardiac problem, or diabetics, are diseases that requires strict maintenance of diet. At the centre counselling are provide to the people with these problems. In some cases children suffer from growth failure. Diet counselling centre seek the causes behind the problem and provide advises and medication for its remedy. In the adolescent period boys and girls needs extra nutrition and in the old age there should be something less in the menu. Diet charts are provided for all these problems if necessary.

Currently they are offering individual counselling but in the future the centre is planning group-counselling sessions.

Entry fee for counselling is Tk200. For diet charts and other advises and prescription you will have to spend some more. Charges depend on the nature of the problem.

Diet Counselling Centre is situated in the 6th floor of TMC building at Eskaton.

By Shahnaz Parveen


Eyes on etiquette

Bonding with bindi by Farzana Shakil

Never underestimate the power of the lovely bindi! It may be small in size, hardly of any cost, and is available by the million, so much so, as to be considered almost inconsequential, in the greater scheme of all that constitute makeover prerequisites. To put it simply (ignore the pun) the simple bindi, is an important cosmetic item, and should be chosen properly and with care. It not only makes you look attractive, it has bearing on your personality as well.

So before choosing any bindi, pay heed to the following. The bindi is essentially a Subcontinental accessory, so take care of the following:

Consider the type of dress and colour. If wearing jeans or midis, the bindi can be ignored. If at all necessary, wear a very small

If you have a small forehead, use a small geometrical bindi and for a big forehead a big bindi. Similarly a round face would require a long bindi, and a longish face, a round bindi.

3. Fair complexioned ladies should opt for any bright coloured bindi, while dark complexions would do well to avoid bindis of dull shades, such as gray or rust.

4. If you have big eyes, use big sized bindis, and smaller ones for small eyes.

5. Opt for lighter colours in bindis in the summer, and darker colours for the winter.

6. For daytime purposes use bindis of simple design and colour, but go for bright and bigger designs at night.

7. Your physique plays a part as well in the choice of bindi; tall ladies should use round bindis, while long bindis look good on the petite madams.

8. Use fancy big bindis for parties in your own house, and medium sized ones for parties outside.

9. Age matters too. Teenagers should go for simple geometrical designs, while college or university goers could fancy colourful bindis. But if you have pushed beyond 40, stick to simple discreet ones in red or maroon.

Remember, anything that a lady wears serves its own purpose, The bindi is no different, it can attract, if communicates, it connects. Wear it with elan, the results are obvious!

By Farzana Shakil




Friday planner

Get organised
Since last week seemed like a rather stagnated time due to the political problems crippling the country, this weekend we suggest that one should avoid taking a trip to the great outdoors. This weekend try to get everything up-to-date and make up for all the lost work if possible.

Making advancements in your career is normally never hurts and working a bit extra after all those hartals can definitely add to the good records of your boss. Although he/she may seem to be dragging too much out of you, this time try to impress with something extra.

Organise yourself and your room, and remember that household-help can't take care of everything around the house. Sort out the documents from the office and the personal documents. Buy folders and try to mark each of them with stickers and then stack them at safe places. Losing documents or paperwork can definitely be a 'pain in the neck' and organising everything shall almost certainly pay off in the not so distant future.

Try to take the books off the shelf and dust them, if weather permits put them under the sun to get rid of those unwanted termites. In the cleaning process you are bound to come across that book that you didn't read or one that you would want to read again. Try to find some of the pictures of yesteryears and if you have enough time try to put them into photo-albums and also relive the good old times with loved ones. If they were already in albums then take them out and put them under the sun to avoid dampness. Checking out old photographs can really help refresh your memory and some of the photographs are bound to bring a few smiles, and we all know a smile never hurts. If you come across people in the photographs who you have lost touch with over the years then arrange small get-togethers and try to enjoy the moments.

Once done with documents, try to personalise your room, and the old photographs may come in handy for this activity. Pick out some pictures and try to make a wall-magazine or even pick up a few pictures and frame them to add that personal touch to your room. Shops that frame pictures can be found at New Market and almost all around the city. You could surprise your partner or loved ones with one of them and this could definitely add a bit of spice.

If you are already a neat-freak, then no need for anyone to state all this. For others, this Friday may not be the best time to do all this, but due to all the day-offs last week we suggest this week could be a bit different than the usual.

By Mishel Ali Khan


Remedies for sore throat

The ache is unbearable, and every time I tend to gulp down something the pain reaches as far as my brain cells- anyone who has experienced the infliction of sore throat knows how much it hurts. Let's see today if there are any easy treatments to this.

The most common thing that our mothers advise us to do is gargling with salt water. Mind you that the water must be lukewarm; it's really soothing and reduces pain into half if done several times a day.

You can also resort to another effective remedy- in a cup of warm water, mix a portion of ginger, a pinch of cinnamon and sugar and a small quantity of honey. The ginger will act as a healing agent, and will therefore, comfort your aching throat.

Honey acts as a magic potion during a sore throat. Take a spoonful of honey and lemon juice and heat it over a stove. Let the hot mix cool down and consume it. People say that it tastes real good. You can also take equal amount of vinegar and honey and drink it. The honey will ease the pain and the vinegar will act as an antiseptic as it can kill bacteria.

The following cure might not sound pleasant but many say that it works well -chew a slice of raw onion during times of bad cold and sore throat. Onions are capable of destroying germs inside your mouth within a matter of few minutes.

Still a friend of mine believes that drinking or gargling with Coca-Cola helps in the fast relief of a sore throat. So readers, you can also try taking this interesting medicine at home and see if colas can really heal a sore throat.

By Penelope






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