There was absolutely no way I could have done a post on Diwali Day, therefor the delay in getting the final post for Diwali Countdown done.
Diwali 2012 is here and it is 13 November 2012. The day starts early with everyone clambering for the shower and then putting on their finest outfits and settling down for the Morning Prayer. My sons do not believe in all of these rituals and traditions, therefore my home is calm on the morning of Diwali as I am the only that goes about performing them.
The above is a picture of my shrine at home
Fortunately my younger son has the day of so he will be around for the day, but my eldest son has not taken the day off and he is in Cape Town on business. My sisters and I have made a point of teaching my nieces the rituals and traditions we will continue with that and hopefully when they are older they will carry on the tradition. They were dressed in their finest Indian outfits with all of the finery that goes with it
The above is a picture sourced from the internet
The above picture is of lamps at the entrance to my home
The above picture is also at the entrance to my home and it a clay lamp in the shape of a coconut
I start the day of by lighting lamps at the entrance of each doorway in my home that leads out, and then I light the lamp in my shrine and offer sweets and milk to be blessed before we have our morning breakfast, and generally Diwali morning breakfast comprises of a milk drink (milk boiled with almonds, pistachios, saffron and cardamom) and light snacks, and since it is just the 2 of us at home it is very relaxed. I had a few friends and family pop over bearing Diwali gifts and greetings.
I also have to make up my little goody boxes that I will be distributing to friends and family. My nieces, nephew, sons, daughter in law and sisters get special presents as well as their goody boxes. Fortunately for me I just have to make a dozen boxes, when I was a little girl growing up in Stanger, we made 35-45 parcels and with a much bigger variety of goodies as well.
This what my breakfast nook looked like on Diwali morning
Another angle of the same breakfst nook
The whole family, us sisters, cousins, my sisters in laws and their families are all had lunch together and there were about 45 of us, but I can assure you that it was such a wonderful atmosphere and this year there were few more kids and babies in the family, and all the kids got extra goodies and they all had so much of meeting, greeting and opening presents. My brother in law is an excellent photographer and he has been going around with the camera in your face catching all those moments that you do not want to be caught on camera, all in all it has been a wonderful day and all leave by about 5.30 so that we can be home in time to light our lamps to dispel the darkness that comes with sunset. We also leave with little Tiffin boxes full of all the leftover food, mitais, goodies and gifts.
Some of us will go to the nearby mandir (temple), to offer prayers and sweets and partake in the evening prayer, and the atmosphere at the mandir is just electrifying. There is a pond at the mandir and all guests on Diwali day light a diya and set it afloat on the pond.
Another Diwali comes and goes and we welcome the New Year with renewed energy and commitment to make it a better year and become better people.