Friday, December 25, 2009

MeRrY ChriStmAs!

Merry Christmas!!
We just finished Christmas here and are getting ready for bed. It's been a really fun Christmas :) I'll post more pictures tomorrow but I wanted to post our "Christmas Card" pic and a couple others ;)
This pic below is so fun :) We were at the mall with our awesome friends the Finns and ran into this rockin' Santa (thanks for the pics guys!) :) Not sure why he has a guitar, but he posed with it for all his pictures :) Aashini is TERRIFIED of Santa (but I would be too with the scary Santas we have here - see post below if you don't believe me!) - you can see how she's scared and clingy in this pic.
Here's our family Christmas picture - we took this a few weeks ago - it seems like Diya is so much bigger now!
We tried for a close-up :) haha!
Here's one of our blooper pictures :) haha!
Hope everyone has/had a Merry Christmas!!!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Funny Things - Santa?

Santa is a pretty foreign concept here. They don't totally understand Santa, so sometimes it can be quite humorous around Christmas... take this Santa (below) for example. They know that stockings are used at Christmas time, but I guess they're at a loss as to what they're used for... I think this guy thought they were fancy Santa gloves :)
Some Santas are just really scary though....
This was the Santa at Aashini's school's Christmas function...
He's just really scary!
haha! I love it :)

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Exploring!

We've been exploring a lot lately with my sis here. I haven't had many opportunities to go out and take pics and do things like this lately b/c I was super pregnant, so it's been fun :)
We went to a temple near our house yesterday and it had some really interesting things to take pictures of - like these bells!
This guy below is a pundit (Hindu priest) and he ties red strings on people's wrists. The strings are supposed to protect you among a few other things.
We went to a fun Minar that's in our city too. It's famous and really old!
For those of you that watch the TV show "Fringe", they mentioned this iron pillar (below) in an episode a couple of weeks ago. It's a really old Iron Pillar that's made of 98% pure iron and was said to have been built between 375 & 413!! It's said to be one of the world's foremost metallurgical curiosities (whatever that means :)). The language that's on it is a language that isn't used anymore.
Aashini had a blast running all around the complex. There was a lot of grass and some hills there and she LOVED it!
Here we are at the Minar :)
A few days ago we went to the Window Mosque. We were able to get on the roof this time :) The roof is really cool :)
We had lots of fun on the roof :)
... and I took a million pictures!
I've taken a ton of pictures :) You can see a lot more HERE!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

My Sister is Here!

My sister is here! She got in the day before yesterday. Yesterday we hung out...
She tried to learn how to make Poori (sp?) bread.... she wasn't very successful at it :) haha!
We took Aashini to school and then went and picked her up after school. It was the first time I had been to her school since having Diya, so we brought sweets for everyone :)
After Aashini's nap, we went to a fort that I love! You can read about the fort here!
This shepherd guy had his donkeys walking around inside of the fort. He had their ankles tied together, it was kinda funny :)
This fort is so cool looking! It's "wintertime" so it's super hazy and foggy looking some days!
There were a lot more monkeys there than the last time we were there! There were tons of them! (You can see a couple of them in the shadows in this picture).
So those are the pics from yesterday... but no pics from today - my sister is sick :(

Friday, December 04, 2009

GOATS!

I started writing this post the evening I went to the hospital, so needless to say, I never finished it or published it :) I thought I'd post it anyway, even though the holiday is over.
The day after Diya was born (Nov 27) was a Muslim holiday called Eid al-Adha (Festival of Sacrifice). In our country it's usually referred to as Baqra/Baqri/Bakr Eid (or the Goat Festival). Muslims that can afford to do so, will sacrifice their best animal. In our city/country, it's usually a goat (which is why it's typically called the Goat Festival). They sacrifice the animals in remembrance of the story of Abraham and God's command to sacrifice his son.

So, as you can imagine, they sell a lot of goats during this time!
This goat made me laugh!
This guy was selling his goats - He kept wanting his picture taken - he was funny :)
There are usually big areas that have lots of goats in the same place so that people have a lot of choices. The goat owners mark their goats so that there isn't any confusion as to which goats are theirs. Some are painted, some wear necklaces, etc...
This guy had his horns painted as a way of identification.
This guy was really proud of his huge goat and wanted his picture with it.
The goats at the bus stop made me laugh :)
This kid kept posing for my camera. He was a proud little shepherd boy :)
So for the first day of the holiday, the family will sacrifice the animal. That next morning, the men go to the mosque and have a prayer time. After this time then they distribute the meat. I've heard and read different things on this, but usually the family takes a 1/3 of the meat, they give 1/3 to their relatives and give the other 1/3 to the poor. Then they can cook and eat it.

The 2nd day of the holiday we were still in the hospital. The hospital we were in was right next to a mosque and a big field. For this holiday the mosque wasn't big enough for everyone, so they met in the field. It was really cool because we could see it from our hospital room!
There were TONS of people!!