Sometimes in life, you come across some people who leave a mark in your life. Today in our women’s day special feature, we are featuring an inspirational woman who is a teacher, social worker, master chef fame and a mom.
She is also a food blogger at Indian Food Express which covers food, love, and recipes, in-short anything that interests in food. Cooking is her passion or simply a thing that binds her together and according to her, her popular food blogging website – Indian Food Express makes that possible.
She is associated with a lot of social causes and is always present at any social event promoting a good cause. She has two lovely daughters and recently she also adopted 28 orphaned kids who are suffering from some form of cancer. You can read about it here.
I have never met Geeta maa, as she is lovingly called, but when I see her doing exceptional work in many different fields, it makes me proud and happy to know her.
She started her volunteering journey from TATA cancer institute where she used to cook for 30-40 people. She is also attached to TATA India foundation to teach kids and also teaches mentally challenged kids at Chembur Sulbha school. I recently asked her few questions and here are her answers for all our readers –
As the founder of Indian food express, you are popular as someone who launched it and made a difference. Tell us more about how the idea came up? What were the key factors to starting it?
I always found my calling in cooking. Little did I know that my passion would take me places. As fate had it, I found myself on national television and appeared as a runner’s up on, ‘Master Chef India’. Just after the show, my daughters encouraged me to key down all my recipes on a blog for people to follow. I started really small. I aimed at enlisting simple recipes for starters who really didn’t know how to cook.
Later I was getting invited to restaurants in and around the city. As the following grew I found myself taking trips outside the city too. I grew organically and soon found myself purchasing my very own website. It might interest you to know, that I was also invited by Singapore Tourism Board, to the beautiful country of Singapore to cover their culture and foods. I haven’t quite looked back since. I enjoy blogging!
Being a married woman with children and being a mompreneur at the same time, can sometimes be taxing. How do you strike a balance between your personal and professional life?
I sincerely believe in the goodness of destiny. In fact, everything happened at an opportune moment. My daughters were all grown up. My mother-in-law, husband, and daughters were extremely supportive of my passion. They were the ones who encouraged me most. I didn’t quite notch up to many challenges at that time, especially on the home -front. We were a little overwhelmed, as from time to time, our entire family gets invited to some of the most prestigious locales around the city, to try out the most sumptuous cuisines from around the world.
Having a multi-dimensional lifestyle like being an entrepreneur, mentor, ambassador, social activist, and mother, introduce us to a day in your life.
I wake up in the morning and sip on a hot cuppa of green tea. After that, I take some Yoga and get involved in my favourite activity of cooking for my family. We ensure that we have our breakfast and dinner together. I do attend various events in the course of the day. I also ensure I invoke Lord Siddhivinayak’s blessings twice a week. His blessings keep my family and me going.
You are an inspiration to everyone around you as you work relentlessly for social causes. Where do you get inspiration as a volunteer?
I was inspired to help people when I saw my own father suffer in pain owing to cancer. I could feel the discomfort he was sending at that time. After he passed away, I took to making food for the patients at the Tata Memorial Cancer Hospital. This gave me the impetus to marry my emotions with my passion and help people around me. Even today I like to serve food to as many mouths I can feed. It gives me a lot of pleasure when people, especially patients have a smile on their face after consuming a hearty meal. It is indeed very difficult for patients to consume food, and I stir up a little flavour, to encourage their intake, enabling them the required dosage of the prescribed medication. I believe, if the patient eats well, he/she medicates well, and then well get well soon too.
Tell us about your journey as a food blogger. How and when you thought of food blogging?
As I mentioned earlier, my journey as a food blogger started just a little after my stint on national television. The journey as a blogger has been a commendable one indeed! I haven’t always witnessed the ups, but there have been down times too. But as a food blogger, I have learnt to handle myself better, and take things at face value rather than taking it to heart. People (especially younger bloggers) think that life should slow down or stop at 50, but the same doesn’t quite apply to me.
I believe that one should start living to the fullest post fifty, as that is the time that you are totally free of all your moral responsibilities as a wife or a mother. In fact, it is the ideal time to keep oneself occupied and going. Also, I firmly believe that your attitude attracts love, and being down to earth won’t only get you more friends, but it will also get you a name and fame. There is no stipulated time to come up, and rise and shine in life. Life just happens and one should embrace the happenings gracefully and positively.
What are your future plans or where do you see yourself in 5 years from now?
Indeed the future is bright; I hope to make Indian Food Express bigger and better, covering a lot more. I also hope to promote some other social initiatives like, ‘Don’t waste food’, ‘Save water’, and many more.
Please extend 5 suggestions for working mothers or other mompreneurs who find it hard to manage their home, family, and work sometimes?
I think all mompreneurs seem to find themselves stuck. But I think-
- They should believe in themselves and believe that they can solve any problem.
They should be bold. They shouldn’t forget they are women and are armed with the fire of good will and determination.
A smile will get them a long way, even longer than they can think.
They are the Empress and have the ability to win over one and all. Last but not the least, most women think they are challenged because they are women. But they are not! They are the more superior gender, and above all GIFTED! She is a Devi, and a Diva at the same time!
These are some lovely pointers from Geeta maa for all women today on #Womensday. I am honoured and privileged to feature her on my website today. Also, a big thanks to her for taking out time from her busy schedule for this interview. Hope to meet her someday!
Wishing you all a very happy women’s day!