This year, Akshara decided to try out something different. I took a printout of a Ganesha image and she stuck different couloured grains on top of the image. This resulted in a multigrain ganapati. I am sure Ganapati should have been happy with this healthier option. By the top this photo was taken, many grains (along with feviquik) were consumed!
Nowadays Akshara wants to do whatever Vidhya does, started with the diya painting upto the traditional “kolam” outside the house. So, Vidhya gave her the colour and a free hand! After some time, Akshara calls us to have a look at the rangoli. We look at it and comment, “what have you scribbled”? She replied “Oh, it is a Ganesha!”
The influence of modern Ganeshas!
Ganesha Rangoli Kolam
Akshara had a very long Diwali vacation. So, the build up to Diwali was quite slow. But, with Navratri very close to Diwali, she was kept occupied by Vidhya. Akshara even painted her own diyas wihout making much of a mess.
Diwali day itself was fun with lot of sweets and the bursting of crackers with friends. She was a bit apprehensive about the sparklers at the start, but later started enjoying it and couldn’t have enough of them.
After many months of deliberations based on the dates suggested by Georgian, Victorian, Tamilian, Google, Flight and What-Not Calendars, we finally ended up at Tirupati for Akshara’s first mottai/Tonsure of head/Mundan/haircut. We were in for some royal treatment, thanks to some high-profile connections. So, the barber came over to our room rather than we going to the common area for the mottai. Akshara had witnessed Laya’s (her cousin) mottai and after having seen what Laya went through, she was very clearly not interested in the whole thing. But, after explaining her the benefits of a haircut (e.g. you get loooooong hair) and many such fictional stories, she was “ok” with the idea and was eager (presumably) for her first mottai.
But, it was much smoother than expected, thanks to modern technology. We showed a video of Laya speaking/singing a rhyme and Akshara thought that she was having a video conversation with her and got distracted. The mottai was done and Akshara was happy about it to the extent that she didn’t want to have a head-bath as she felt that the “mottai” would go away!
Her hairless condition meant that she could get ready at a moment’s notice to go out 🙂
Couple of weeks back, orbis school had organised a fancy dress event with the theme being “A community helper”, which incidentally was one of the themes in Tree House last year, when she went dressed up as a police woman/security guard. This year, she dressed up as a Dhobi/Laundry Wala, which kind of blended with her current hairstyle (or the lack of it).
Last year, it was Krishna (See her for Akshara dressed up as Krishna). This year, the plan was for Radha. Also, her playschool had asked all girls to be dressed up as Radha and the guys as Krishna for their Janmashtami celebrations. Akshara wore a demo-version to school as it would have been too much to expect her to keep everything on during the 2 hours at school.
So, in the evening, before the official puja/snack time, Radha was up and ready! Akshara is now very comfortable before the camera and very accommodating with her poses, but she is on a world of her own when it comes to her expressions! The matka, which was given to each student in her playschool, was her favourite prop for the day.
Akshara wanted to take part in the Puja. My uncle was also here and he was the one doing the pooja. if you see the photo below, you will notice the change in times. The sloka was being read out from a downloaded text file on the laptop 🙂
With lot of snacks like Murukku, Cheedai, Mysore Pak etc being prepared and kept right in front of our eyes, it turned out to be too tempting for Akshara. But, mom said that kids are exempted from the naivedhyam-ritual for god and are allowed to bite-in anytime and this is particularly applicable for naivedhyams to Krishna! I will never grasp the complexity of the rules of all the rituals.
With mama, mami and my mom also in Pune, the traditional as well as the culinary aspects of Krishna Jayanti were experienced to the fullest.