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Club No: 03373392 Area 33 D ivision J      

District 20


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Editor’s Letter -Usha Mohan

  September  brings  with  it  all  things  new.  There  is  a  sense  of  purpose  in  the  air,  a   chance   to   achieve   goals   after   a   refreshing   break.   It   always   starts   in   a   frenzy   in   Dubai,   with   people   getting   back   to   the   Emirate   after   a   long   summer   holiday.   Schools  and  colleges  reopening,  traffic  woes,  office  deadlines…     In  a  nutshell,  it  is  getting  out  of  holiday  mode  and  back  to  the  daily  routine.  There   is   a   flurry   of   activity   in   the   Desert   Divas   club   too.   The   newly   elected   Excom   officers   are   getting   on   with   their   roles.   The   entire   club   is   gearing   up   for   club   meetings   after   the   long   hiatus.   The   Divas   are   now   confidently   striding   out   to   other  clubs  to  create  a  name  for  themselves.       We   are   all   of   two!   We   are   definitely   sure   footed   if   not   nimble   yet!   Two   of   our   Divas  have  completed  their  CC  and  CL  manuals.  Few  more  will  be  following  their   footsteps  shortly.       Humbly  I  embark  on  this  new  journey  as  editor  of  Reflections,  following  talented   predecessors   such   as   Deepa   Umashankar,   Vijaya   Sukumar   and   Sowmya   Rangarajan.  Will  I  leave  my  footprints  in  the  sand?  Only  time  will  tell.       Hope  you  enjoy  this  new  issue  and  embrace  that  September  feeling!          

       


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Table of Contents       President’s  Message  ..........................................................................................................  4   Mentors  and  Sponsors  .....................................................................................................  5   Excom  (2015-­‐2016)  ..........................................................................................................  6   Back  to  Nature  ....................................................................................................................  7   Succeeding  Together…  Supporting  Each  Other  ....................................................  10   Monsoon  Diary  .................................................................................................................  12   Recipes  ...............................................................................................................................  15   Challenge  ...........................................................................................................................  18   Picture  Gallery  .................................................................................................................  20    

   


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President’s Message -Padma Ramji

  Let’s  communicate  with  confidence     Have  you  ever  had  a  moment  in  life  when  you  had  something  to  say  but  could  not   get  the  right  message  across?  Obviously,  none  of  us  want  to  be  remembered  for   'faux  pas'  .  Fortunately  we  are  all  in  the  right  forum  to  hone  our  communication   and  leadership  skills.     Desert  Divas  was  launched  in  2013  with  the  sole  purpose  of  providing  a  platform   to  encourage  and  support  its  members  to  shed  their  inhibitions  towards  public   speaking.   This   journey,   in   itself,   has   milestones   of   learning   by   active   participation.   When   you   are   surrounded   by   like   minded   people   with   a   willingness  to  encourage  one  another,    learning  becomes  so  much  fun.  That  is  the   most  distinctive  aspect  of  Desert  Divas.       We,  at  Desert  divas,  are  fortunate  enough  to  have  gifted  speakers  who  come  up   with  a  variety  of  speech  topics  that  add  spice  to  our  meetings.     Toastmasters   International   is   a   world   leader   in   communication   and   leadership   development.  Being  a  part  of  Desert  Divas,  you  are  one  of  the  300,000  members   of  a  larger  international  organisation  spread  over  135  countries.  All  of  us  stand   united  in  our  goal  to  improve  our  personal  communication  and  leadership  skills.       The  way  we  communicate  with  others,  ultimately  determines  the  quality  of  our   lives..      


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CLUB MISSION

We provide a supportive and positive learning experience in which members are empowered to develop communication and leadership skills, resulting in greater self-confidence and personal growth.


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Back to Nature Project 10 Speech, Delivered at the Club Let us   briefly   step   back   in   time   and   look   over   our   shoulders   at   an   era   gone   by.   Let’s   take   a   glimpse   at   that   period   when   life   was   simple,   when   gadgets   were   fewer  and  people  more  active,  when  home  cooked  meals  were  the  order  of  the   day,   when   foods,   cosmetics   or   medicines,   had   more   natural   ingredients   than   artificial   additives,   when   a   lot   more   came   directly   from   natural   sources   than   from  bottles  and  tubes.     Good  morning  dear  mentors,  fellow  toastmasters  and  friends………….   That   was   a   time   when   our   parents   and   grandparents   appreciated   nature,   recognized  its  generosity  and  knew  what  to  do  with  the  ample  treasures  it  held.         Every   household   had   an   all-­‐knowing,   resourceful   grandma   who   had   a   quick   fix   home   remedy   for   every   common   ailment.   A   persistent   cough?   Turmeric   and   pepper   in   hot   milk   did   the   trick,   a   nasty   stomach   pain   or   menstrual   cramps   –   fenugreek  seeds  soaked  in  curd  or  castor  oil  came  to  the  rescue,  ear  pain  in  the   middle  of  the  night  –  in  went  a  few  drops  of  warm  oil  heated  with  garlic.      It   was   not   all   about   cures;   grandmas   had   a   lot   of   preventive   measures   too   up   their   sleeve.   Has   any   of   you   ever   had   that   bitter   concoction   made   with   neem   leaves  that  was  given  periodically  to  keep  the  digestive  system  going  strong?       Oh,   there   were   a   lot   of   remedies-­‐   simple,   natural   and   very   effective.   Today   the   pepper  and  turmeric  are  still  there  but  at  the  first  sneeze  we  rush  to  the  doctor   and  get  drugged  with  medicines  prepared  in  a  lab.       Scientific   research   and   technology   has   found   cures   for   several   diseases   and   we   have  easy  access  to  the  best  medical  facilities  but  are  we  really  healthier  than  our   forefathers?       I  wonder  –  maybe  we  need  to  get  closer  to  nature.     My  father  who  is  88  has  a  disciplined  lifestyle  even  today.    He  has  always  been  an   active  person  and  would  only  walk  to  get  his  errands  done.  Even  today  he  does   not  miss  out  on  his  morning  walk.    He  eats  everything,  but  in  moderation.  There   is   a   salad   of   fresh   green   vegetables   with   every   lunch.   He   slices   them   himself   without  waiting  for  anyone  to  do  it  for  him.    There  is  no  fancy  salad  dressing,  just   a  pinch  of  salt  and  a  dash  of  lemon  to  enhance  the  taste.    Despite  belonging  to  a   community  and  generation  where  certain  vegetables  are  taboo,  he  has  no  qualms   about   including   a   few   cloves   of   garlic   with   his   meal.     His   drinking   water  


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flavoured with  a  few  herbs  is  stored  in  a  copper  vessel.  At  home  it  is  my  father   who  meticulously  cuts  fresh  fruits  every  day  and  serves  everyone  in  the  family.     To  sum  it  up  he  believes  in  simple  natural  measures  for  a  healthier  life.     In  our  fast  paced  life  today,  everything  is  about  convenience.  Instead  of  peeling   fruits   we’d   rather   pour   them   out   of   a   bottle!     Farm   vegetables   come   from   the   freezer.    It’s  so  much  easier  to  buy  bottled  water  than  boiling  it  at  home.  We  look   for   exotic   recipes   with   rich   ingredients   but   are   lethargic   to   prepare   a   simple   salad.     And   then   suddenly   one   day   we   hear   of   someone   falling   sick   and   in   a   moment  of  panic  we  decide  to  look  for  organic  natural  foods.     Cinnamon  powder,  ginger  extracts,  lemon,  fresh  basil,  mint…………..they  are  filled   with  so  many  nutritional  and  medicinal  qualities.  All  we  need  to  do  it  is  identify   them  and  use  them  effectively  and  consistently.       Can  we  not  get  closer  to  nature?   Gooseberry   or   amla,   hibiscus   flowers,   fenugreek,   henna,……………..   Any   guesses   what   our   mothers   did   with   these?   Hair   Oil   of   course.     Oil   was   processed   at   home   with  all  these  nutrients;  it  was  massaged  into  the  scalp  and  washed  off  with  the   fruit  of  the  acacia  plant  (shikakai).  That  was  a  time  when  many  of  us  could  have   competed  with  those  models  who  flaunt  their  long  thick  bouncing  hair.  Now  we   have   a   variety   of   scented   oils   enriched   with   almonds,   aloe   vera   and   olives   and   to   wash   that   scented   oil   off   our   beautiful   tresses   we   have   protein   rich   egg   shampoos  in  different  colors.  What  is  the  result  may  I  ask  –  most  of  us  can  now   act  as  models  for  hair  replacement  therapies.       Often  times  we  need  to  choose  between  cumbersome  and  natural  or  convenient   and   artificial.   What   do   you   think?   Is   it   too   late   to   go   back   to   nature?     Is   it   impractical   to   adopt   those   age-­‐old   methods   now?   Is   it   foolish   to   follow   unscientific  practices?     I  have  a  friend,  an  educated  person  of  this  generation,  a  woman  who  is  as  busy  as   you  or  me.  She  has  made  informed  choices  and  believes  in  going  natural  as  far  as   possible.    When  her  son  suffers  from  bouts  of  wheezing  and  bronchial  congestion   her  remedy  is  not  nebulization  but  steam  inhalation  with  carom  seeds.    To  keep   her  husband’s  sugar  levels  under  control,  she  has  been  giving  him  lady’s  finger   soaked   water   every   morning.   My   friend   has   thick   hair   and   is   one   of   the   few   people  who  does  not  complain  of  hair  fall  –  reason  she  uses  simple  coconut  oil   treated  with  herbs.  She  has  complete  faith  and  vouches  by  the  efficacy  of  every   one  of  her  methods.     Friends,  the  person  I  am  talking  about  is  right  here  amidst  us.  In  fact  she  is  our   TMOD  Bindu  Krishnan.        


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Nature is  generous  and  there  are  a  lot  of  benefits  that  can  be  reaped  from  it.  We   need   not   adopt   all   but   can   sift   through   the   old   practices,   and   make   prudent   choices.   We   can   exploit   the   goodness   of   nature   and   enhance   the   quality   of   our   lives   with   simple   easy   measures.   Blood   pressure,   diabetes,   cholesterol,.   ………………There   are   natural   methods   that   can   help   in   controlling   even   if   not   curing.     Let  us  get  closer  to  nature.   To   start   with   I   have   adopted   a   practice   -­‐   I   prepare   my   drinking   water   every   morning  with  a  few  slices  of  lemon,  cucumber  and  a  few  mint  leaves.  Perfect  for   summer  this  keeps  the  body  hydrated  and  energized,  reduces  toxins  and  keeps   the  blood  pressure  under  check.     Friends   step   back   in   time   once   again,   glance   over   your   shoulders   and   bring   back   with  you  some  of  those  natural  remedies,  habits,  and  processes  and  move  into  a   future  that  will  take  you  closer  to  nature.                        

          Sowmya  Rangarajan  is  our  club  VP  Education  and  the  first  diva  to  complete  the  CC   and  CL  manuals.  She  is  a  teacher  par  excellence  and  an  inspiration  to  our  members.     Heartiest  Congratulations!        


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Succeeding Together… Supporting Each Other DTAC 2015   was   a   memorable   event   of   my   life.   Why?   It   was   because   of   the   knowledge  that  I  gained  and  for  the  fun  that  I  had  with  the  Divas.  May  28,  29  and   30   was   the   DTAC   weekend.   Nine   of   us   from   Desert   Divas   Toastmasters   club   attended   and   enjoyed   every   bit   of   it.   There   was   a   feeling   of   nostalgia   as   it   reminded   us   of   our   maiden   days   where   we   would   huddle   around   rubbing   shoulders  with  our  friends.  Now  you  must  be  wondering  what  DTAC  is?  Well,  it   is   the   District   Toastmasters   Annual   Conference.   It   is   the   event   and   conference   where   the   Division   winners   in   the   various   categories   compete   for   the   District   title.   The   categories   are:  International   Speech,   Humorous   speech,   Evaluation   and   Table  Topics.    Generally  contests  begin  as  early  as  February  at  the  club  level.  The   Toastmasters   who   win   at   this   level   move   on   to   the   Area   level;   the   winners   at   the   Area  level  move  on  to  compete  at  the  Division  level.  Then  the  winners  from  the   different   Divisions   get   an   opportunity   to   contest   at   DTAC.   In   DTAC   there   are   Semi   finals   and   Finals.   The   winner   of   the   International   speech   contest   gets   to   represent  the   District  at  the  Annual  Toastmasters  International  Conference.    The   Conference  was  held  in  Las  Vegas  this  year.  With  the  filtering  that  takes  place,  I   am  sure  you  can  guess  the  quality  of  speakers  we  get  to  hear  at  DTAC.     It  was  not  only  the  speeches  that  we  got  to  hear,  we  also  enriched  our  knowledge   with   the   Educational   sessions   that   were   held.   ‘Theatre   in   Public   Speaking’   by   Shanker   Ramachandran   and   ‘   The   life   in   your   speech’   by   TM   Mohamed   Al   Shukri   won   our   hearts.   Both   speakers   left   us   spell   bound   and   gave   beautiful   insights   into   Public   Speaking.   Coming   to   contests,   we   enjoyed   a   handful   of   evaluations   and   Table   topics.   TM   Vinod   Raman   Wariath   and   TM   N.   T.   Arasan   were   very   good   in   the   humorous   category.   Their   speeches   fascinated   us,   as   they   chose   general   topics   that   people   could   laugh   at,   rather   than   wife   bashing   which   most   other   speakers  resorted  to.     Coming   to   International   Category,   TM   Sam   Kodeih   from   Division   F   and   TM   Ali   Al   Farai  from  Division  D  were  fantastic.  The  icing  on  the  cake  was  hearing  District   Champion  TM  Koka  Prasad  from  Division  Q.  He  had  a  fantastic  topic  that  all  of  us   could   connect   to.   All   these   3   speakers   were   a   feast   to   watch,   as   their   body   language,  voices  and  messages  were  fabulous.   After  two  days  of  learning  we  attended  a  gala  dinner.  As  mentioned  earlier  it  was   beautiful  way  to  spend  time  with  our  buddies,  as  we  generally  miss  out  on  such   things   as   we   grow   into   our   family.   Each   and   every   Diva   was   enjoying   the   ‘me   time’  that  we  had  got.    


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It would  be  wrong  if  I  fail  to  appreciate  the  DTAC  team  headed  by  DTM  Ramesh   Anantaraman.   The   whole   team   had   done   a   flawless   job   by   putting   in   a   lot   of   effort.  Kudos!   I  would  like  to  conclude  by  mentioning  that  DTAC  2015  held  at  Dubai  Women’s   College  was  one  of  the  most  beautiful  experiences  of  my  life.  The  tag  line  of  this   event   was   ‘SUCCEEDING   TOGETHER…   SUPPORTING   EACH   OTHER!’   This   was   truly  lived  up  to.      

  Sujatha  is  a  devoted  mother  and  a  keen  Toastmaster.      


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Monsoon Diary Like all   of   us   ‘Gulfies’,   I   too   feel   scorched   by   the   time   it   is   July.     I   start   keeping   track   of   the   Monsoon   in   my   home   country   India.     This   year   the   meteorological   department   warned   of   a   lackluster   monsoon.     Those   predictions   made   me   wonder  if  I  would  see  enough  rain  during  my  annual  trip  home.    Fortunately,  the   rain  gods  did  not  disappoint  me  one  bit.   As  my  flight  neared  picturesque  Mangalore,  I  could  see  an  oasis  of  emerald  green   amid  an  abundance  of  water  from  the  Arabian  Sea.  Literally  hundreds  of  rivers   rushed  to  become  one  with  the  sea,  as  the  plane  entered  a  thick  cover  of  clouds.   A  light  drizzle  welcomed  me  as  I  set  foot  on  my  motherland.  It  was  as  if  a  mother   was   soothing   her   child   by   saying,   “Here   here   my   child,   don’t   stress   over   small   things.”   The   safe   landing,   sight   of   near   and   dear   ones,   green   pristine   surroundings,   pleasant  weather  and  light  rain;  as  always,  visiting  home  felt  like  heaven.   My  monsoon  vacation  started  right  away  and  I  set  off  on  a  road  trip  to  Mysore   via  Madikeri.   For  those  who  are  not  aware  about  the  topography  of  that  region,  the  entire  road   traverses   through   mountains.     These   Mandalpatti   Mountains   in   Coorg   district,   with   their   thick   forest   cover,   are   always   shrouded   in   mist   and   fog   even   during   the  day.    I  felt  as  if  I  was  living  a  dream  rather  than  being  on  a  road  trip.  

As   darkness   fell,   this   dream   started   getting   a   bit   scary.     The   light   drizzle   had   turned  into  heavy  rain  and  we  could  see  huge  lightning  and  thunder  bolts  every   few   minutes.       The   same   green   foliage   that   had   mesmerized   me   earlier   started   appearing  like  a  congregation  of  wicked  witches,  with  spidery  hands  coming  to   grab  me  at  every  turn.      


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When we   reached   our   destination   in   the   middle   of   the   night,   my   children,   also   taken   in   by   the   scary   side   of   nature,   were   eager   to   rush   into   the   safety   of   their   beds.   Mysore   showed   me   the   royal   splendor   of   the   Vijaynagar   Empire   and   Wodiyar   Dynasty.    Besides  the  opulence  of  a  royal  palace,  I  also  enjoyed  a  grand  exhibition   of   Raja   Ravi   Varma   paintings   at   display   in   the   Mysore   Palace,   depicting   the   grandeur  of  an  era  bygone.   Next  stop  in  my  journey  was  Pune.    In  Pune,  the  rains  don’t  lash  at  you  or  scare   you;   instead   you   can   enjoy   their   gentle   caress.     So,   going   out   and   about   during   the  rain  is  quite  customary  in  Pune.   I   did   not   lose   the   opportunity   to   enjoy   a   small   mountain   trek   to   visit   a   fort   called   Sinhagad.     It   is   a   very   well   known   historical   place   in   Pune   and   is   a   favorite   weekend  getaway.    The  Sinhagad  scale  of  fitness  goes  like  this:  the  fittest  Army   jawans   are   asked   to   climb   up   in   half   an   hour,   and   regulars   do   it   in   one   hour.     ‘Gulfies’  like  us,  who  do  it  once  a  while,  are  excused  even  if  we  take  a  couple  of   hours.    Never  mind  the  time,  I  was  glad  I  could  do  it  at  all.   This  year  I  got  a  bit  greedy  and  wanted  another  vacation  in  the  mountains  before   returning  back  to  my  desert.   So  we  made  a  plan  to  visit  a  place  called  Shivthar  Ghal,  a  ledge  in  the  mountains   where  a  sage  wrote  words  of  wisdom  a  few  hundred  years  ago.    We  reached  the   spot  after  a  three-­‐hour  arduous  drive  through  the  steep  Varandha  Ghats,  which   are  dreaded  for  their  narrow  hairpin  bends.  As  we  stepped  out  of  our  car,  all  our   efforts  of  travelling  paid  off  the  instant  we  saw  the  spectacular  sight.  

I  saw  floating  mountains,  with  gushing  waterfalls  everywhere!!!    I  was  standing   at   a   high   altitude,   with   mountains   all   around   me.   White   fluffy   clouds   were   meandering   across   the   peaks.       The   monoliths   appeared   to   be   swaying,   as   you   couldn’t  see  the  base.    Gazing  at  the  cliffs,  swathed  in  mist  and  fluff,  I  wondered  if   I  had  stepped  foot  in  heaven.  So  I  pinched  myself  as  well  as  people  around  me,   just  to  be  sure.    The  chorus  of  shrieks  came  as  a  relief,  whoa!  It  was  so  good  to  be  


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alive, to  be  at  the  top  of  the  mountains.  We  were  inhaling  moist  monsoon  air  and   watching  clouds  play  with  the  wind.    I  was  truly  in  heaven.   So   my   friends,   I   have   come   back   with   a   treasure   of   mist,   mountain   air   and   monsoon   in   my   heart   to   last   me   until   my   next   escapade.     Until   then   I   have   to   make  do  with  memories.        

  Anita   has   recently   gone   back   to   work   as   an   Auditor   and   is   a   committed   Toastmaster.    

           


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Recipes -Usha Mohan Try these  delicious  and  simple  recipes  during  the  Eid  Holidays!      

Spicy Bean  Burrito  

Ingredients:       1. Kidney  Beans-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐  2  cans  drained  &  washed.   2. Sweet  Corn  Kernels-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐1  can,  drained  &  washed.   3. Tomato  Paste/  Puree-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐1  can  140gms   4. Tomato  Ketchup-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐  2  tblsp   5. Jalapenos  -­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐  chopped  2  tblsp   6. Red  Chili  Powder-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐  1  tsp   7. Coriander  Powder-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐  2  tsp   8. Cumin  Powder-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐1/2  tsp   9. Tortillas-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐8   10. Fresh  Lettuce-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐  4-­‐6  leaves  washed  &  shredded     11. Tomato-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐2-­‐3  washed,  halved  &  sliced   12. Sour  Cream-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐  2-­‐4  tblsp   13. Cheddar  Cheese-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐  grated  2  tblsp     14. Salt  &  black  pepper-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐to  taste     Method:          In   a   saucepan,   place   the   kidney   beans,   tomato   paste,   tomato   ketchup,   chili   powder,   coriander   powder,   cumin   powder,   salt   and   black   pepper   powder   and   gently   heat.   Mix   well   and   bring   to   a   boil.   Reduce   heat   and   bring   to   a   simmer.   Remove  from  heat  and  keep  aside.       Warm  the  tortillas  on  a  skillet  or  in  the  microwave  oven.  Place  a  warm  tortilla  on   a  plate,  put  2  tblsp  of  the  bean  mixture  along  the  center  of  the  tortilla.  Now  top  it   with  the  sweet  corn  kernels  and  jalapenos,  and  then  add  a  layer  of  tomato  slices.     Now   arrange   the   shredded   lettuce   over   it.   Sprinkle   with   the   grated   cheddar   cheese.   Add   a   dollop   of   sour   cream   in   the   center   and   fold   the   burrito   from   the   bottom  and  then  the  sides  to  form  a  wrap.                                


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Vegetable and  Pasta  au  Gratin  

Ingredients:     1. Mixed  Vegetables  i.e.  potatoes,  cauliflower,  green  beans,  broccoli,  carrots,   baby  corn,  spinach,  zucchini  (vegetables  of  your  choice)  -­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐  3  cups,   washed,  cubed,  cut,  diced  etc.   2. Elbow  Macaroni  -­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐  1  cup  cooked  &  reserve  1  cup  of  the  water  you   cooked  the  pasta  in.   3. Olive  oil-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐  3  tblsp   4. Butter  -­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐  3  tblsp   5. All  purpose  flour  -­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐  3  tblsp   6. Milk  -­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐  3  cups   7. Capsicum  green  &  red  -­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐  1  of  each  finely  chopped   8. Onion  -­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐  2  finely  chopped   9. Garlic  -­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐  3-­‐4  cloves  finely  chopped   10. Cheese  grated  -­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐  1  1/2  cups  (Cheddar,  Edam  or  even  Amul  )   11. Salt  &  freshly  ground  black  pepper  to  taste   12. Red  Chilli  flakes  to  taste.     Method:         Heat  oil  in  a  pan.  Fry  the  garlic  for  a  minute,  then  add  the  chopped  onions  and  fry   till  the  onions  are  soft.  Now  add  the  capsicum  &  sauté  for  3  minutes,  add  all  the   remaining  vegetables  and  sauté  till  done.  Keep  aside.     In  a  saucepan,  melt  the  butter  and  add  the  flour.  Keep  stirring  till  it  is  well  mixed.   Little   by   little   add   the   milk,   constantly   whisking   the   mixture.   Season   with   salt   and  freshly  ground  pepper.  Keep  stirring  till  it  thickens.  Remove  from  heat  and   stir  in  1/2  cup  of  cheese.     In   a   large   baking   dish   mix   together   the   cooked   veggies   and   pasta.   Pour   the   cheese   sauce   over   it   and   mix   well.   If   it   feels   very   thick,   add   some   of   the   pasta   water   and   mix.   Sprinkle   the   remaining   grated   cheese,   dot   with   some   butter   or   olive  oil  on  top  and  sprinkle  the  red  chili  flakes.  Bake  in  a  hot  oven  and  grill  till   the  top  is  golden  brown  and  the  cheese  is  bubbling.     Serve  hot  with  a  fresh  green  salad  and  crusty  bread.    


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Summer Trifle  

Ingredients:           1. Jelly  Crystals-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐  1  packet  85  gms.(flavour  of  your  choice)   2. Store  bought  Swiss  Jam  Rolls  or  sponge  or  pound  cake-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐2  packets   3. Fresh  Strawberries  -­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐  1  1/2  cup  washed,  hulled  &  halved  (you  can  use   fruit  of  your  choice,  i.e.  orange  segments,  pineapple  chunks,  peach  slices,   apple  slices,  seedless  grape,  blueberries  &  raspberries)   4. Homemade  Vanilla  flavoured  custard-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐  2  cups  (made  from  custard  mix)   5. Orange  juice  or  apple  juice  -­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐  1/2  cup   6. Whipping  Cream-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐  1  cup  chilled  (can  also  use  Dream  Whip)   7. Sugar  -­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐-­‐  1  tblsp.(optional  )       Method:           Make  the  jelly  as  per  the  instruction  on  the  packet.  Cube  the  jelly  when  set,  keep   aside.       Slice  the  Swiss  jam  rolls  into  1  inch  slices  or  cube  the  pound  cake  into  bite  sized   cubes.  Now  take  a  large  glass  bowl  and  layer  the  bottom  with  half  the  jam  rolls  or   pound  cake.       Sprinkle  half  the  orange  or  apple  juice  over  them.  Scatter  half  the  jelly  cubes  over   this,  and  then  place  the  prepared  fruit  over  the  jelly  cubes.  Now  pour  half  the   thick  custard  over  the  fruit.  Repeat  the  layering  up  to  the  jelly  cubes.  Now  pour   the  remaining  custard  over  the  jelly.       Whip  the  chilled  cream  with  the  sugar  till  soft  peaks  form  (if  using  Dream  Whip   follow  the  instruction  on  the  packet).  Now  spread  the  cream  over  the  custard,   sprinkle  with  remaining  fruit  and  refrigerate  till  required.        


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Challenge

Toastmasters Blockbusters     ‘Titanic’,   ‘Avatar’,   ‘Jurassic   Park’  were  some  of  the  blockbuster  movies  which   kept   us   on   the   edge   of   our   seats!!!   Similarly,   the   ‘Blockbusters’   game   is   an   interesting  quiz,  suitable  for  all  ages.  It  is  the  perfect  game  for  those  of  us  who   get   intimidated   by   the   very   word   “Quiz”.     A   complete   entertainer,   Blockbusters   needs  presence  of  mind  more  than  anything  else.    So,  presenting  before  you  –       ‘An  all-­‐exclusive  ‘Toastmasters  Blockbusters’!       So,  let  us  test  our  knowledge  about  Toastmasters!!!     1. Which  ‘S’  founded  the  Toastmasters?   2. What  ‘I’  is  the  first  project  of  any  Toastmaster?   3. What  ‘G’  does  a  President  hit  to  open  and  conclude  a  meeting?   4. Which  ‘E’  gives  a  feedback  of  your  speech?     5. Which  ‘S’  is  the  first  one  to  speak  in  every  Toastmasters  meeting?     6. In  which  ‘L’  was  the  2015  Toastmasters  International  Convention  held?     7. What  ‘S’  method  does  an  Evaluator  use  during  the  evaluation?     8. All  toastmaster  meetings  are  held  once  every  ‘F’?  What  ‘F’  is  this?      


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9. Which  ‘W’  helps  the  members  to  increase  their  vocabulary  in  every   meeting?     10. Which  ‘D’  is  the  only  all  women’s  club  in  the  UAE?     11. A  contestant  may  be  disqualified  from  a  speech  contest  if  he/she  delivers   a  ‘P’  speech.  What  ‘P’  is  this?   12. Which  ‘Q’  is  the  2015  World  Champion  of  Public  Speaking?        

  Radha  is  a  loving  mother  of  two  sons  and  an  enthusiastic  quizmaster.               Please  send  your  feedback  and  answers  for  the  blockbuster  quiz  to   mohanusha@hotmail.com             Contact:  desertdivastm@gmail.com               WEBSITE:  http://3373392.toastmastersclubs.org/  


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Desert Divas' Reflections (Sept 2015)  

Toastmasters Club Newsletter

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