Being an Indian-born American, raising her family in America can be difficult at times. There has to be a balance of making your children aware of their own culture and heritage, while also making sure they are assimilating as you did.
In our home, we celebrate many holidays, including Christmas, Thanksgiving, Diwali, Eid, Mother’s/Father’s Day, National Coffee Day. We especially love celebrating National Do Dishes For Your Wife Day! Haha! Jokes aside, we start celebrating in October and the party goes on every month until January! October starts with Diwali, the festival of lights.
When I was younger, my parents would put up Christmas lights on our porch and living room window, half white lights and half multi-colored; always crooked. It’s one of the things that I fondly think about when I think about celebrating Diwali with my family. When the lights went up, that’s when I knew the food, family, and laughter was just around the corner. IT WAS LIT.
We’d celebrate with cleansing the whole house, performing a Lakshmi pooja, going to the mandir, eating lots of food, and doing fireworks.
It ends with Bhau Beej. This is when a sister invites her brother over to her house and serves him his favorite food. Enter laughter and food: the ladoos, the Sukhadia’s sweets, the random guacamole that some aunty would bring by.
But now that I’m old, my mom ain’t hosting huge dinners and doing poojas. That kind of leaves the ball in my court. Sanj and I have talked about religion and culture in depth and we’ve kind of come to a common ground. To us, it’s very important to make sure that our children are at least aware of their background. And not just our background, but also that different people come from different paths and it’s okay to take the time out to understand what they believe and how they live. Basically, we want our kids to be well-aware and not assholes.
I’ll just put it out there that I don’t make ladoos from scratch. I probably won’t even cook a huge spread; we’ll keep it simple and basic. Mainly because I’M JUST BASIC. But we have our lights up.
And we are doing some fun activities with our kids, including fireworks and fun arts and crafts.
That’s why I’ve created a complete 10-page workbook on Diwali. It not only tells a short story of how we celebrate it, but it has great activities for kids like coloring pages, a word search, and a cool maze!
It’s a great workbook for kids that are learning to read, recognize patterns, and color. You can find it here: Diwali Workbook
We had a lot of fun doing it together and we hope you do, too! Please leave some love and let us know how you enjoyed it!