Jan 30

Catch-Up Over Coffee #2 (Blog Birthday, Shanaya Tales ‘Birth Story’ + #ChattyBlogs Linky)

Hola folks!

As you may have figured out from the overly long post title, this is the very first #ChattyBlogs linky, which just happens to be on the two year anniversary (or is it the birthday? 2nd birthday?) of Shanaya Tales.

Speaking of which, I feel like this (the blog birthday) would be the perfect time/occasion for the ‘birth story’ post, which in this case, is essentially the backstory of Shanaya Tales, and my today’s ramble of choice. So, here goes..

Shanaya Tales – The ‘Birth Story’, or more accurately – the Backstory.

Some years back, I got into the habit of regularly watching YouTube videos. Now for folks who don’t really watch YouTube, outside of the occasional shared/viral video, you might find this difficult to understand, but trust me – it’s a whole different universe out there.

It started with the usual – hunting for recipes (because I was a relatively novice cook back then), and then I found these beauty vloggers, whom I found very interesting to watch, which by the way was pretty strange, because on an average day, my idea of getting reading doesn’t extend beyond taking a bath & washing my face. Moisturizer is a bonus. Anyway I digress.

So like I was saying – watching beauty vloggers was like watching TV – just entertainment, no action, but I did develop a real interest in cooking, though I always needed to adapt the recipe to suit my taste. Which is why & how I got into the habit of writing down/documenting my version of the recipe.

Over the years, as I became a more experienced cook, my version no longer resembled the original, because I had developed my own style/comfort zone, and system of experimenting.

It was at this time that I started  toying with the idea of starting my own Food channel on YouTube,  but honestly I was far too chicken (and camera shy) to actually follow through & implement.

Which is why a food blog seemed like an acceptable compromise – I could still share my love of food with everyone, without ever having to be on camera. Win -Win!


In that initial burst of enthusiasm, I went ahead & registered the food blog … on 1st June…2014. Yes 2014. And that was it. Nothing ever happened on that front. No, the idea never left my mind, nor did the desire, but the pointless pursuit of perfection stalled my plans.

However towards the end of 2014, I realized the direction this was going in, and felt the need to do something about it. And this need was what gave birth to another ingenious (?!) idea – of starting a ‘practice’ blog before I start The blog. I know it sounds stupid now. Admittedly, my methods were convoluted , but since this was what eventually led to me starting Shanaya Tales, I will never ever regret it. But I am getting ahead of myself here.

Let’s back up a bit. Like I said, I had decided to start a practice blog. And since this was the practice version, I did not obsess over it as much.

The dominant thought in my mind was that I wanted it to be effortless, something that would be like second nature to me. Which is why, I decided to write about my very first love – books. I read books all the time. Writing about them would be as simple as reading them, I thought. I was wrong, but thank God I had no idea about this tiny detail at that time.

Also, this thing got moving very quickly. The idea of a practice blog had only come to my mind during the very end of December 2014, and within a month, I was able to decide on a name, register it, buy a theme, buy hosting, and even write the first post. A relatively quick turnaround for my usual procrastinating self.

From there, the blog took a life and structure of its own, and it was just one amazing milestone after the other. The supposed practice blog, which was also the only real existing blog (outside of my head), became a source of constant joy and positivity.

And that is something I will be eternally grateful to you guys for. Thank you for being there for me through this ‘practice’ journey, and for all the love, encouragement & unconditional support that you guys have showered on me. I can’t even begin to explain how much that means to me, but it’s something I will always cherish.

That’s all from my end folks. I would love to hear from you guys. Do you have a blog ‘birth story’ to share too? I would love to hear it in the comments. Or better still, you can write a post, and link it here!

In other news – I am currently reading The Lunar Chronicles series (which is quite interesting so far), and I am binge-watching Friday Night Lights on Netflix. And boy oh boy, this sport-centric series is so addictive! In-spite of the fact I am not particularly knowledgeable about or extremely interested in American Football, I just can’t stop watching. Fun times! 

What are you guys currently reading/binge watching?


The Linky: As promised, I have created a linky for #ChattyBlogs at the bottom of this post.

Here’s how it works:

  1. Write a chatty/rambly post – it could be a deep, thought-provoking one or even a random ramble. No judgement here.
  2. At the bottom of your post – add the #ChattyBlogs badge, and link to this post (which hosts the linky) to encourage other bloggers to join in.
  3. Add your link to the #ChattyBlogs linky.
  4. Visit and comment on the fellow bloggers’ post in the Linky
  5. Enjoy!


      Chatty Blogs Badge


Note: I have also created a twitter handle for ChattyBlogs & registered the actual hashtag #ChattyBlogs. So, when you do write and link up your posts, please do use the hashtag & I will be sure to RT & share it.

Let me know if you have any questions.




  1. Nice, following chatty blogs on twitter. Congrats on completing 2 years of blogging! You should totally start your food blog too. That way we will get some great recipes from you. 🙂 I started blogging in 2005 I think and have been scribbling something ever since.
    Avada Kedavra recently posted…First Disneyland tripMy Profile

  2. Hi Shantala, love the chatty blog and great to see you continue it. I did my first one in November (linked into the hashtag) but couldn’t find other chatty blogs. Anyway, I look forward to finding other bloggers too. I like that you wanted to start a practice blog before the real one. But the practice one turned out to be the one. I started in October 2011. Can’t believe it’s been that long.

    I haven’t binge watched anything for a while. Last one was Stranger Things and Better Call Saul. Friday Night Lights was filmed in my home city. 🙂

  3. That’s interesting. So, what happened to the food blog? Is it not “birthed” yet? I also have these “practice” blogs used for testing new plugins or layout changes. Happy birthday to the blog!

    Will the chatty blog be weekly feature?
    Lata Sunil recently posted…These circuses … Teaser Tuesday 1My Profile

  4. Very cool, Shanaya! Lovely idea. You know you could sneak in a prompt here around what you wrote. Always nice to go back and reflect on why we did something.

    All the best– the linky is a great idea! I enjoyed reading your story. <3
    Vidya Sury recently posted…Smiling in GratitudeMy Profile

  5. Hey, Shantala, I liked this idea of the Chatty Blog and am already thinking of something to write here. It was fun reading about the birth of your blog. I, too, had begun a fiction-practice blog, but soon realised how pitiful an attempt it was! So I just scrapped it off and decided to concentrate on ‘feelings’, only.
    All the very best for Chattyblogs! <3

  6. Congratulations Shantala for completing 2 years of blogging. I found the birth story of Shanaya Tales and the idea of a practice blog becoming a mainstream success both interesting and exciting 🙂 For the chatty blog linkups, I believe I can join you every month since most of my posts are the chatty types.
    What I am reading these days? I have picked up To kill a Mockingbird once again. The last time I read it was 4 years ago. The next in my TBR list is The Time Traveller’s Wife, encouraged by one of your posts. I have already watched the movie once and loved it.
    Anamika Agnihotri recently posted…5 favourite online shopping sites #MMMMy Profile

  7. Happy Birthday to the blog and lots of love. #ChattyBlog sounds like us getting together over a cup of coffee and just chatting and that sounds like a great idea!
    Every blog has its own story of coming to life isn’t it? Loved reading the story behind Shanaya Tales. Whatever the path yo took, it has led to the creation of this awesome space, that we love. (Though I am guilty of not showing up here often! Sorry!Promise to change that.)
    As for the linky once a month would be the best, on a Monday or Wednesday.
    Jaibala Rao recently posted…The Page TurnedMy Profile

  8. Well, this was news to me Shantala that you had originally planned to do a food blog! But whaddya know, Shanaya Tales had other plans for you!! Kismet Konnection or what? One ends up doing what one is destined for. That said I am so glad the blogging world found you and it is all the more better because of you and your wonderful blog! Cheers and kudos to you. Looking forward to this series. And I seem to be on a writing hiatus for some unknown reason, so don’t know when I will be able to jump on to ChattyBlogs 🙁
    Kala Ravi recently posted…Sale TaleMy Profile

  9. Friday night lights is awesome. I’m going to watch How I met your mother. Will share how I find it.
    All the best for yoyr blogging journey! Keep sharing and inspiring.

  10. Congratulations Shantala. Like I’d said when you first floated this idea – I love chatty blogs. Well all my posts are chatty so obviously. That birth story was interesting. The trial blog became THE blog. Heh heh! Life’s unpredictable to say the least.
    Beat About the Book recently posted…On self-esteem #Teaser Tuesday – 2My Profile

  11. Happy second anniversary to your blog, Shantala. I’ve heard your blog back story earlier and l found it quite interesting. I got that the food blog would see the light of the day someday. Chatty blogs is a good initiative and l wish you good luck with it.
    Rachna recently posted…The January That WasMy Profile

  12. A very happy birthday to you! I love reading stories of how every blog was born. Like you, I am also shy in nature and that’s where written words help. I do watch YouTube often but my interest is wildlife and short films. Here’s to many more successful years to Shanaya Tales. 🙂
    Rekha recently posted…It’s a Girl!My Profile

  13. Congratulations on the 2nd birthday! ?

    The hashtag #ChattyBlogs reminds me of my introverted awkward silence in any situation, and hence my ability to write really lengthy posts on the blog *hides face* I surely will be around to read the posts on the linky, and maybe one day when there’s a need to ramble, I will be super chatty 🙂

    I’m currently reading Thinking, Fast And Slow by Daniel Kahneman. Binge watching Criminal Minds!
    Mithila Menezes @fabulus1710 recently posted…The ExpeditorMy Profile

  14. Love the idea Shanaya and I am keen to add my #chattyblog to this series soonest. I think once a week posting sounds great – choose a tuesday or sat as I feel Monday, thursday and Fridays have too many prompts happeing in the blogosphere 😉

    I loved the story of your blog genesis – eager to see your cooking blog too, hope you do start with that soon too.

    BTW I also have 2 book contests on my blog for this month for the love of books in the month of love. Do check them out as I know you are a serious book lover too!
    SHALINI BAISIWALA recently posted…#BookSlutThursday – A new contest for the love of books in Feb 2017My Profile

  15. This is such a you post! Cute, heartwarming, friendly, self effacing a day yes, chatty! Love the story of the blog birth. Mine wasn’t anything this dramatic which makes me wonder if I should write mine soon. All the best for chatty blogs and I hope to be able to participate really soon once I’ve settled down.
    Shailaja Vishwanath recently posted…Winds of changeMy Profile

  16. Hey! Congratulations and Happy Birthday, Shanaya Tales!
    Chatty Blogs Linky idea seems interesting. Will write and link a post. 🙂
    Tarang Sinha recently posted…Book Review: Dilli Darbaar by Satya VyasMy Profile

  17. So many of us start blogs for so many different reasons. It’s great to hear your story and happy anniversary/birthday
    Susan Gourley recently posted…IWSG: February and So Much NewsMy Profile

  18. Congratulations Shantala on completing 2 years of blogging! I oved this idea of chatty blogs, I would really love to join in. However sharing personal stories a big no for me, may be I will come up with social rantings that I usually do, and do well actually! All the best for your third year and many more years to come
    Menaka Bharathi recently posted…Happy Sunday – The Link Up PartyMy Profile

  19. What a wonderful story .Congratulations on your blog birthday. Important to keep writing and learning.

  20. Congratulations Shanaya. That is so wonderful. Blogging is always wonderful. I’m able to add my url now. Thanks!

    Blog birthday sounds really cool! And the #ChattyBlogs idea.. I just loved it. Sounds so much like me! And this post was one of its kind.

    Blogging journey has been really different for me. I started my blog back in 2011, but wasn’t regular with it. I started writing on my blog in 2015, and this makes me wonder when should I actually celebrate the blog’s birthday? From the time it came into existence or the time when it actually got life!


  21. Congratulations Shanaya! I am the other extreme end of the spectrum wherein I just jump into stuff and then learn from my blunders :p he he he. My sister in law has a story so similar to yours. And her blog has been in making since the past 8 months. Maybe I could suggest thus idea of a practice blog so that she too gets into the mode of getting on the train. By the way, I will look forward to that food blog soon or even better the YouTube channel. All the best dear! !

  22. Congratulations on the blog anniversary, Shantala. It was heart warming to read your blogging journey. Loved the concept of chattyblogs too. I too,like you, tend to overthink and it delays my plans. But yes, good things shall come to you no matter how much you keep postponing them 🙂 Wishing you many more years of productive blogging!
    Maliny Mohan recently posted…Author Talk – Radhika TabrezMy Profile

  23. Ooooh! Happy birthday to the blog. This is what they say about writing books as well, that if you sit and wait for everything to be right and perfect, you’ll only keep waiting.

    Just noticed the chattyblogs linky. Added my overly rambly post of the day 😛 – Twitter’s dead at the moment for me so will bookmark this and share later, for sure!
    Sreesha recently posted…Mr. Heckles and IMy Profile

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