Wishing all you lovely people, my dear readers, my friends and family A Very Happy Diwali and a Happy New Year.
No no, don't worry, its not January '16 yet.
I haven't been time travelling (as much as I wish to) nor have I lost track of time.
Let me explain. In Gujarat, India, the people follow the old traditional calendar known as the Vikram Samvat. According to the calendar we just started with our 2072 year. So there are 3 primary new years that I get to celebrate each year - the Baisakhi or the Sikh New year, the Gujarati New year and the good ol' 31st Dec new year. Plus there are others as well which I won't get into details as of now.
More chances of fresh beginnings, more chances for making new resolutions, more chances for me to decide going to the gym (and dropping it the next day ofcourse) and last but not the least, more celebrations!
A week prior to Diwali was crazy hectic like I presume it must be during Christmas time outside India. Lady luck was kind to me around this time. I was featured in a national magazine as the Top Food Blogger of the state. They were kind enough to publish my Diwali Special recipe too. Check out the recipe here! Here's a glimpse of the article
Following that I had a couple of radio interviews where I shared some of my recipes.
And then I was invited as a judge for a Rangoli competition at the biggest clubs in the city. (Does this sound like I'm tooting my own horn? Cause I totally am!)
Diwali is a time that I like to follow indulging in my own little traditions. I like to be involved in DIY projects that make each Diwali special. Everyone is in the holiday mood. Work takes a back seat and so does going in the kitchen and cooking. Quite reasonably so since majority of the time is spent out shopping and chilling out with family and friends and dining out.
Which brings me to notify you that this post is not going to be food related. I wanted to share the joyous occasion of Diwali with all of you.
I took tons of pics, one of my aunt's was visiting us after a gap of over 3 years so it made our diwali all the more special. I don't prefer bursting crackers on Diwali but after about a gap of 13-15 years, we lit a few crackers. So it was a proper diwali with family, loads of good food, tons of sweets, oodles of weight gain, fun and traditions.
I did sorely miss my grandpa who left us all in 2013. I thought of him and I could almost hear his voice during the paath(prayers).
If you're wondering what I did as my DIY, here's a glimpse.
I painted my own Diyas or earthen lamps. I do this every year.
I then went on to make my own lanterns by recycling old glass jars- this took me some time since the drying process takes pretty long.
They sure look pretty, don't they?! I couldn't take my eyes off of them!
I couldn't get my eyes off of them when I was done and they were lit.
The day before Diwali, I put mehendi on my hand. Its a tradition I follow since I was a kid. This was the only time mom would allow me to put mehendi/ henna since it was festival time.
On the day of Diwali, after waking up at 5 in the morning- which a mean task especially if you've slept at 3 the previous night, I made this Rangoli. A rangoli is a design made with coloured sand. It beautifies the entrance of a house and it is believed to invite good luck. As always I favoured a peacock themed rangoli.
Then was the Puja ki thaali,
And some more, cause one can't brighten up the house enough! The little flickering lights and the decorative flower pots transport me to an era forgotten when everything was so simple, when a festival would be grand if you had the light of a lamp illuminating the house and a few flowers strewn around to make the air fragrant.
And some more
As I oscillate between consumerism during the festivities and the old traditions, the only words echoing in my head on this festival are, if you light the path for others, you light up the path for yourself too. Shine bright my Happy people! Wishing you a splendid holiday season and loads of love and luck. Keep spreading the joy!