If you know me, you know that I have a fascination with India and Indian culture, and dream of one day traveling to India. While in high school and college I dated a few Indian boys and I was an officer of the Indian Cultural Association in college (first white officer – maybe only!). While in college I started celebrating Diwali and Holi, two Indian holidays, and also observing Ramadan. Until I got pregnant, I was still observing Ramadan, and Chris and I made it one of our family traditions to throw a Diwali party every fall. Even last year with a six week old baby, we had an elaborate spread in a spic and span house strewn with diyas.It was magical.
This year, Chris had to work, but we still celebrated, if separately. He made a fabulous prix fixe menu for the weekend at the Brotherhood, which sold really well. Nora and I went in Friday night to have some and it was amazing!
Of course he made me my favorite thing, Malai Kofta. Ohhh…my…I love my husband.
Then, Saturday, Nora and I had our Diwali party at the house. We invited a bunch of our friends from LLL and play group, and jammed them all into our little house.
Which reminded me how much I love having babies underfoot. Lots and lots of babies.
The party was a big success, although it was not the restuarant-style feast in a spotless and decorated house that we had last year. I definitely learned how ridiculously hard it is to throw a party on your own with a one year old (especially one who did not nap at all the day before). I really, really missed my better-cooking other half. I never got around to sweeping the floors, candles were lit and food was finished about an hour after people arrived, I definitely failed at my version of Malai Kofta (which was the last thing I made), and there were dirty dishes in the sink…and the bathtub…and behind the laundry curtain in my kitchen. Some hostess I am. My mom definitely would not have approved.
We had a ton of delicious food, because on top of my palaak paneer, malai kofta, dal, rice, raita, chutney, naan and kheer, everyone who came brought something, too. Indian cauliflowers and potatoes, curried chick peas, samosas, more naan (you can never have too much!), pie, cranberry bread, wine, and chai. It was a feast, as all Diwali celebrations should be.And I did manage to get a few diyas going at the last minute.
The best part about the evening, believe it or not, was probably the fact that I didn’t get everything in it’s “fake house” company place and that I was running behind. Because that stress, just melted away when I realized that it didn’t matter. Everyone had a good time, even if my floors had been swept two days before and not that day. No one minded that I rushed through cooking the last dishes as they were arrived. And besides not minding, they all helped! Helped take pictures, helped watch Nora, helped cook and helped clean. And, yes, even helped to hide dishes in the bathtub. That’s when you know you have good friends.