Honey, I’m Home!

After what I’m going to call a 6 month hiatus for this blog (and not just laziness and a lack of time), I’ve decided that it’s time to pull up my socks, put on my big girl pants etc. etc. and give it a big ol’ smooch to wake it from it’s slumber.

I’ve had time to think about what I want out of this blog and why I lost the motivation to write, and it turns out that it was that I had forgotten this was and is my blog. Madame Macaron’s little space on the  internet to post about whatever catches my fancy and not to conform to what I thought was expected.

So, there will still be all of my favourites like the Blogger Recipe Series and The Macaron Files included, but expect a few more  posts about places I’ve been, things that I’m doing and stuff that I love.

I hope that you enjoy all the new content, and if you do, that you take a minute to leave a comment and let me know.

So belated Happy New Year. Let’s do this 🙂

xxx Viveshni

 

Photo Credit: http://www.marklerouxphotography.co.za

 

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Hello Monday : Eat All The Cake

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Hello Monday!

After a 500 3 week long school holiday the kids are back to school today and life will return to somewhat normal programming.

I have to say that although I did endeavour to take some time off and enjoy the holidays with my girls, it was a very busy period for me filled with many, many cakes, so I don’t really think that that they minded at all.

This Wednesday I will be posting Tip # 2/20 in my Macaron Files series (Know Your Almonds). If you missed the first tip you can find it here.

Then on Friday will be a healthy but delicious recipe from GI Jane in the Blogger Recipe series and somewhere in between I will be sharing my recipe for Gluhwein and my Chocolate Gluhwein Cake. So, stay tuned for an awesome week ahead!

Here are a few photos of my favourite bakes from the past few weeks.

If you’ve seen something that you like, you can always head over to our contact page and send us an enquiry or just leave a comment here to let us know which one you loved the most 🙂

xxx Viveshni

Monday Me

So I watched the most beautiful movie on Mnet last night called About Time. It was about a guy who discovers that, like his father, he can travel back in time. He uses this ability to relive days and moments to recreate his life ,and get the girl and his happily ever after. There were a few tears from me and I was genuinely touched by the movie and connected with the characters. The movie was gentle, if you understand what I mean. In the midst of a line up of fast paced modern romances with gratuitous nudity and sex, this was a love story between a man and all the people in his life. If you haven’t watched it yet, best you get pvr’ing.

My takeaway was that we should be enjoying the beauty in each day and the moments that fill it rather than rushing through. That has been one of my objectives for the year and maybe that’s why it resonated with me.

That’s past 2 weeks have been crazy for me and I thinks it’s time I slow my roll and enjoy life. As you know I’m participating in the Fat 2 Fit challenge and every Monday is the official weigh and measure day. I missed last week’s Monday Me post but to catch you up, my loss last week was 0.5kgs and 12.5cm.

This week it’s 1.2kgs and 6cm. So in total, after 3 full weeks, it is 3.8kgs and 41cm! Slow and steady wins the race but this is one time I don’t mind being a loser 🙂

Valentines Day is less than a week away and I’ll be sharing a recipe on how to make delicious red velvet brownies as well as how to make a cupcake bouquet. For those of you who are not into DIY gifts you can also take your honey out for a night on the town and I have the scoop on some great Valentine specials.

I hope you all have a wonderful week and always remember that you don’t have to wait until Valentines Day to show the people in your life that you care.

Monday (Wednesday) Me : A New School, A New Weigh & A New Me

So, this past week my 2 babies girls started Grade R. I’m still a little in denial that they are growing so quickly before my eyes and soon won’t be needing me as much as they do now. While my holiday officially ended the previous Monday, I was on a bit of a go-slow with them being at home and still in holiday mode, but this week was full steam ahead. I think that it will take them a bit of time to adjust from the Montessori way of teaching to a completely scheduled day, but if the 1st week is anything to go by, I think that that they will be just fine.

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In keeping with my New year resolution to be the best version of myself, I’ve started the A New Weigh –  Fat To Fit Challenge. It is a programme and challenge created by Gaelyn Cokayne, who, working with a medical doctor, personal trainer, psychologist and nutritionist, put together an eating plan and workout schedule to help people finally reach and maintain their goal weight by eating real food and without the use of pills and shakes.

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The great thing is that during the 12 weeks of the challenge there is a small community of people supporting and encouraging each other on a dedicated Whatsapp group and Facebook page. Having completed a week in the challenge I think that this support from the other participants and from Gaelyn, who herself has lost an incredible 35kgs, is one of the key factors that make this such a great programme to follow. There is someone to answer your questions and provide support and encouragement when you feel yourself slipping. It’s different people, leading different lives, but with the same goal and experiencing the same difficulties.

As for the food. All I will say is that I’ve been on this weight loss road for most of my life and I have never had a menu as easy to follow as this. My meals have been filling, satiating and above all yummy. Because really… chicken, rice and potato  or even better pizza for dinner on diet! Yes please!!

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So with one week over and my first weigh in done…

My weight loss for the week is: 2.2kgs
Cm lost: 22.5cm ( I measured 3x to be sure)

Woohoo! I have been walking and sitting much like a geriatric since heading back to the gym but I’m focused and determined to make a positive and permanent change. Here’s to the next 11 weeks 🙂

This blog will also be undergoing a few changes. Now that the girls are older and I’m spending more time with other adults, doing things that adults do, I’m going to be including more than just food posts on the blog and rebranding to make it more of a lifestyle blog, so that it encompasses more of my interests apart from the goodies that I bake. The sales part of Madame Macaron will move to http://www.madamemacaron.co.za, but there will still be a link here.
It is a work in progress,so it will take a while for the changes to take full effect and I hope that you enjoy the new direction.

Please let me know what you think of the pending changes.

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Monday Me : #BigFatIndianWedding #ShaunWedsLerina

Our New Year was kicked off with a bang!This past weekend was filled with heaps of excitement as cousin Lerina got married! I love family weddings because they bring in family from far and wide to join in the celebrations and we get the feelings of togetherness that we shared as kids before we had our own kids to run after.

It all kicked off on Friday with the nelengu at 7am! Lerina looked beautiful, even covered in tumeric. The evening nelengu was more formal and  is traditionally more of a last celebration before the wedding day. Again, Lerina looked stunning. She was dressed by Durban duo Mark and Clint and they lived up to all the hype, but then again they had a beautiful canvas to work on.

The nelengu was lots of fun and the highlight was definitely the choreographed father-daughter dance to Desi Girl. It was awesome, and I had no idea that my uncle had those moves in his repertoire! With my Uncle’s band, Global Warming, and a DJ there to entertain us, we all danced away into the night.

The heat was crazy, but with airconditioners on full blast we got ourselves ready for the wedding. It was held at The MTSS Hall in Merebank. Everything was set up to perfection and everyone looked stunning. Everything went exceptionally well and both Shaun and Lerina looked amazing up on stage performing the rituals We took a few selfies while waiting to wish the bride and groom (obviously).

From the brides house, to the groom’s and then to the hotel, it was a whirlwind of an evening that ended with some shooters at around 12:30am. While we are all in need of a good rest, it was an amazing weekend spent with family and an abundance of love.

Well done to the Naidoos and the Rungens on all the hard work and planning coming to fruition. To Shaun and Lerina I wish you both all of the love and best wishes for your many many many years together. Welcome officially to the family Shaun!

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You can see more of the photos from the celebrations if you use the #ShaunWedsLerina on Instagram

Monday Me 15/12/2014: My Birthday

The great part about my birthday being at the end of the year is that it gives me a chance to review the good and the bad from the past year. 32 has had its ups and downs, a lot of of blessings and an equal number of lessons. I have so much to be thankful for, and so to reflect on another year gone by here are the things and people in my life that I am thankful for.

  • My husband Justin, who despite my occasional nagging, extreme forgetfulness, sentimental hoarding and quirky character loves me unconditionally, supports and motivates me and is also the one who is the voice of sanity when life gets a bit cray cray 🙂
  • My 2 beautiful girls, Jasmin and Teyla. Never would I have dreamed of being blessed with twins and to see them grow into such loving, independent and beautiful little girls is an endless source of joy to me. I’m thankful that I can be the kind of parent that 2 spirited kids like them need and that they know how much I love them.
  • My parents, who when I was younger I didn’t completely understand, but as a parent now, I see the method behind their madness and appreciate even more all  that they have done and still do for me and my own family.
  • My sisters, Niresha and Saiyuri. I’ve read somewhere that sisters are the friends God chooses for you and it’s true. I have a different type of relationship with each of my sisters but the thing that is the same and is constant is my love for their and their love and support of me.
  • My grandmother is the last of my grandparents still with us and I am thankful every day that we still have her in  our lives and I can answer the phone and hear her on the other end saying ‘Hello my darling ‘. I’m guilty of not spending enough time with her, but 33 is going to be the year that that changes.
  • My old friends. These are the ones that know all my deepest darkest secrets. Even though we are spread out around the country, I’m thankful for having them in my life because I know that no matter what is going on in my life, good or bad, they are there without judgement to support or rejoice with me and they know that I am there for them as well.
  • My new friends. I’ve made so many new and wonderful friends this year who have shown me that you are never too old to create new friendships and connect with people. I’ve had so much fun with them and done so many new things and some old things that I haven’t done in a while too. It’s always something to be thankful for when we are able to meet a person with a good heart and a great personality as well.
  • My business. This past year has been amazing for my business and it has grown incredibly. I am thankful for each and every one of my customers that spend their hard earned money on my products, the people that talk about my business and the wonderful and even sometimes not so wonderful feedback that I get.
  • Time. I’m thankful that I control my own time. That I can choose when I want to work, so that I can spend time with my family.
  • I have my health, a wealth of love and hopefully some wisdom 🙂

 

 

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Monday Me 17/11/2014 : Better Late Than Never!

As I write 11 in the date for the title I actually find it hard to believe that this is where we are in the year already! It’s less than a month to my birthday ( woohoo) but I’m going to have to work through it ( not so woohoo ) but at least I’ll have some spending money for after (woohoo).

So here’s what’s been happening. We’ve gotten through Justin’s birthday, my mother’s birthday and yesterday was my nephew Tanishk’s birthday. He’s a big cupcake lover, in fact I think that all he sees when I walk in is cupcakes and macarons 🙂 So, I made this giant cupcake for him.

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Jasmin and Teyla’s first school concert was on last Wednesday as well. It was so well put together and our little girls made us so so proud. We took about a hundred photos, so I will share some of those soon.

We still have my niece Ascharya’s birthday coming up on the 25th and then the girls on the 30th. Party planning has begun and the girls are having a superhero themed party this year. Although my venue of choice closed its doors this year, we were lucky to get a booking at the Treehouse in Gateway.

Now if all of that didn’t sound like enough, the girl’s ballet showcase is on the 28th and 29th of November. This means extra lessons in the week and 2 nights for Justin and I watching the show. Not to mention their karate grading on the 26th. I’m tired already just thinking about it all! I will have to stock up on the Berocca for sure.

I’m happy to announce that I will have a table at the KZN Christmas Market, in Kloof, that runs from 16 – 21 December 2014 . I love the concept of the market. All the items will have barcodes and you can walk through and browse and choose at your leisure. There is no direct selling like a regular market so you can buy what you really want and need without any pressure. At the end take all your items to the till and make 1 payment for everything. Needless to say that’s going to take a lot of prep but I’m really looking forward to putting together the Christmas themed items.

Lets make the most of these last days of 2014.! Here’s what I’m looking forward to…

13 Days to Jasmin and Teyla’s Birthday

14 Days to December

19 Days to the #SpiceGoddessEvent

24 Days to My Birthday ( you can work out the date and wish me on the day 😉 )

38 Days to Christmas

45 Days to 2015!

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Monday Me : 03/11/2014

Last week I had decided not to take on any orders because I basically needed a break. There comes a time sometimes when you know that if you don’t take a time out you’re going to burn out.

I really enjoyed the time. I got up to date with all my admin i.e replied to all my emails and sent out all my invoices. Planned my schedule for November and blogged my booty off.( not literally, though I wish it worked like that! ) Ok, so I technically didn’t take a real break from work but I did get to just sit my Justin and the girls and do nothing in the evenings which is something I’ve missed, since my work brain is permanently switched on these days. Also the fact that I didn’t have a cellphone for the week may have helped also.

Justin and I celebrated our 6year anniversary on Friday & Saturday. You probably wonder why 2 days. Well… we had our marriage ceremonies ( yes 2, 1 Hindu and 1 Christian) on the 31 October and our reception was on 1 November. So we make the most of it and celebrate on both days. He are some pictures from 6 years ago.

We went to see Tumi Morake at Suncoast on Friday night with my sisters and their husbands. I absolutely love that woman and I cannot sing her praises enough! She is so uncensored and you feel like you’re sitting and listening to one of your friends when she’s on stage. She was worth every cent and if you haven’t had a chance to see her I recommend you go the next time she’s in your town. I recently went to see another very well known “daywalking” comedian ,and personally, if it was a battle, Tumi would come out on top.

On Saturday we had a lovely lunch at Havana Grill in Suncoast as well. The food and service were amazing and I’ve got a review post lined up all about it. I did feel dweeby taking pictures of our food before we ate but a girls gotta do what a girls gotta do 🙂

Justin’s birthday is this Wednesday and it kicks off the birthday season in our family. We have one party a weekend and 2 on the last weekend, one of which is Jasmin and Teyla’s. There are 8 birthdays in total in my immediate family so it’s a very busy and expensive month especially since it’s also the run-up to Christmas. It all ends with my birthday in December and I’ll be 33 this year. I feel like I’m owning my 30s so I’m looking forward to it!

October was a phenomenal month and I have higher hopes for these last 2 months of 2014. Let’s all support the guys doing the Movember challenge and have an awesome November!

 

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Monday Me 27/10/2014: Cuppa For Cansa {The Serious Stuff & The Grand Total }

My life has never really been directly touched by cancer. I have a dear friend whose mother has beaten it twice, an aunt who died of leukemia before I was born and distant family friends who have had to fight the battle against the disease. But there has never been anymore in my immediate family and for that, I am thankful every day.

So why then, did I choose the Cancer Association as my charity to support and why host a Cuppa For Cansa when cancer has clearly not been a significant part of my life.

In Hinduism it is called Seva or Sewa, where a service is performed without any expectation of reward for the person performing it. To me the Cuppa is my Seva. Planning and hosting the Cuppa has been a tremendous growing experience for me. I’ve learned how generous and selfless people can be. I’ve also learned how spiritually fulfilling helping others with no expectations can be.

Also, I have 2 daughters and it is a fact that 1 in every 26 women, irrespective of race or social status in South Africa, will get cancer. To me that number is astounding. The key to survival is education and early detection, as 70% of all breast cancers can be found by self examination. So, I think that it is my duty to be well informed and keep my daughters well informed as they grow into women.

I want to send out my sincerest thanks again to everyone that attended the Cuppa last week and contributed so generously, as well as those who helped set up.
A few of the ladies at the tea told me that I had inspired them to host their own Cuppas. I hope that they do follow through with that because every rand raised and every Cuppa held helps the Cancer Association.

How Your Donations Help Fight Cancer

R20 can help us give a newly diagnosed cancer patient important support and information resources to help them through their cancer journey.

R50 can help staff the CANSA Toll-free Information Service 0800 22 66 22 with expertly trained, multilingual counsellors.

R100 can help train a CANSA volunteer to provide one-to-one support for people diagnosed with cancer.

R250 can help disseminate our internationally acclaimed CancerCare Coping Kits to survivors all over South Africa.

R500 can help provide ‘a home from home’ for patients while they are undergoing cancer treatment in major centres. CANSA has various Care Homes, a hospitium based in Polokwane, as well as a CANSA-TLC Nicus Lodge in Pretoria and a CANSA TLC Paediatric Oncology Ward in Limpopo. Read more re CANSA’s Holistic Care & Support to those affected by cancer…

R1000 can help provide Mobile Health Units delivering services in resource poor communities like informal settlements, townships, farms and in remote rural areas.

Like I said at the tea and Marlene reiterated, a Cuppa For Cansa doesn’t only have to be held in October. They can be planned for any time of the year, so I challenge everyone that reads this to host their own Cuppa and help make a difference. If you have already hosted a Cuppa you also have until this Friday to enter the awesome competition held by Le Creuset for the most inspirational Cuppa.

So finally, I’m very proud to announce that with the help of all the amazing ladies that attending the Cuppa, the businesses that donated prizes for the raffle and auction and the private donations I was able to raise….

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Here are the posts by a few of the lovely ladies that attended the Cuppa

Megan Deane

Jane Tennet

Hazel Whitehead

Faeema Sader  

Verushka Ramasami

xxxViveshni

Monday Me : 5/10/2014

So, have you ever had one of those days when it seems like Murphy’s Law is in full effect?

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Well, the end of my week last week was kind of like that. From mixing up the colour scheme of an order and having to redo it, to not being able to find my baking powder at 9pm in the middle of baking a 3 tiered cake and finally, not being able to find ground almonds anywhere with an order of macarons to make. I was not a happy camper. Thankfully, even if it was at the very last minute, and with the help of my amazingly wonderful husband, each issue was sorted out and the weekend made up for the horrendous week.

We partied like old people at our nephew’s 21st on Saturday. There’s nothing like being around a whole bunch of 21 year olds to make you feel your age! It’s a good thing we’re still awesome 😄

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Sunday was the best, because I got to sleep in past 9am! We had a pretty chilled day with a visit to The Stables Lifestyle market and to my parents, and ended the night off watching Frozen together for the 20th time.

So basically all’s well that ends well 🙂 I have a huge order for over 1000 macarons that I’ll be working on for Thursday, so needless to say I’m going to be super busy. The girls are also on holiday for this week, so I’ll have to think up some fun stuff to keep them occupied.

I’m going to end this with some pictures from the past week of things I baked and I stuff I did.

Have an amazing week ahead and remember to find at least one thing that makes you smile every day.

Mickey and Minnie cake pops.

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IMG_8359.JPG The Minnie Mouse themed cake that went with the cake pops.

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The lovely Ms.Glossary Lauren celebrates her birthday tomorrow but had a pre-birthday tea party on Saturday. These are the macarons and mini cake that I made for her.

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Here are a couple of pictures that she posted to her Instagram account and you can read the post on her party here.

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