Celebrating Diwali with Family & Friends

Last weekend we celebrated Diwali with family and friends and had an outstanding time with all!  Saris, Food, Sparklers, & Great Company. This turned out to be an awesome fun evening filled with laughter, delicious food, sparklers, and gorgeous saris.

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Every year, we host a Diwali party for our close family and friends to celebrate the most important Indian festival Diwali – Festival of Lights. This is the equivalent of Christmas for Indians. In India, the entire country celebrates Diwali with every home decked with lights and diyas (clay oil lamps) and fireworks and sparklers. A huge feast is had on Diwali with plenty of sweets and treats and a celebration where not just families, but entire neighborhoods gather together on the streets with sparklers and fireworks.

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While here in America it’s hard for us to go this elaborate with our Diwali celebrations we do try to make it as festive as we can. For us that involves getting together with family and friends to enjoy a scrumptious feast and light a few sparklers. And for the ladies, a chance to get decked in our finest saris!

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Here are a bunch of pictures from this year’s Diwali party at our home in Northern California. For more information on Diwali, take a look at a brief description at the end of this post.

Getting ready for our Diwali Party:

 Family Pics:

Let’s get this party started!

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A feast worthy of royalty:
Thank you to all the ladies who brought the most delicious food for the celebration.

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Saris, Saris, and More Saris!


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California Cousins:

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Hanging with close friends:

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Guys & Gals:

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Time for Sparklers!
A special thanks to our friends Radhika and Michael for supplying us with sparklers.

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What is Diwali:  Diwali, also known as the Festival of Lights in India, is a celebration that is at its core the observance of the triumph of good over evil. National Geographic has a great description of Diwali and I thought it best to just quote them here. Diwali. Festival of Lights

From National Geographic:  “Diwali or Dipawali, is India’s biggest and most important holiday of the year. The festival gets its name from the row of clay lamps (deepa) that Indians light outside their homes to symbolize the inner light that protects us from spiritual darkness. This festival is as important to Hindus as the Christmas holiday is to Christians.

Diwali, celebrated in October or November each year, originated as a harvest festival that marked the last harvest of the year before winter. India was an agricultural society where people would seek the divine blessing of Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth, as they closed their accounting books and prayed for success at the outset of a new financial year. Today this practice extends to businesses all over the Indian subcontinent, which mark the day after Diwali as the first day of the new financial year.

Indians celebrate with family gatherings, glittering clay lamps, festive fireworks, strings of electric lights, bonfires, flowers, sharing of sweets, and worship to Lakshmi. Some believe that Lakshmi wanders the Earth looking for homes where she will be welcomed. People open their doors and windows and light lamps to invite Lakshmi in.

Hindus interpret the Diwali story based upon where they live in India. In all interpretations, one common thread rings true—the festival marks the victory of good over evil.

  • In northern India they celebrate the story of King Rama’s return to Ayodhya by lighting rows of clay lamps after he defeated Ravana.
  • Southern India celebrates it as the day that Lord Krishna defeated the demon Narakasura.
  • In western India the festival marks the day that Lord Vishnu, the Preserver, sent the demon King Bali away to rule the nether world.

Over the centuries, Diwali has become a national festival that is enjoyed by most Indians regardless of faith.”

Happy Diwali!
Wishing you a Prosperous and Happy New Year! 

 

19 thoughts on “Celebrating Diwali with Family & Friends”

  1. Hi Dolly and Hitesh,

    Our thanks to you and the family for a super Diwali 2016! It is an annual event we look forward to greatly. We so appreciate the wonderful planning and festive celebration – amazing company and delicious fare Thanks for hosting us!

    We’re glad to have been able to add to the festivities with sparklers for all. We had so much fun as always. Hope Kishan and Kieren will join us next year.

    Love and best wishes to you!

    Radhika & Michael

    Like

  2. Hi Kalpana,

    Thank you for hosting us at your Diwali dinner. We all had a good time and as always the food and the décor was outstanding. You put a lot of effort in every detail. It was nice to meet everyone and catch up with all.

    Like

  3. Kalpana and Hitesh,

    Thank you, for being gracious and attentive hosts and for making this Diwali celebration special. We had an amazing evening filled with wonderful company and delicious food.

    Always a pleasure to attend your soirees,
    G, divya & Megha

    Like

  4. Dear Dolly,

    We had a wonderful time on Diwali! So festive and colorful – such beautiful clothes/ jewelry and delicious (and healthy) food! Feast for ones eyes and stomach! 😊 Thank you for hosting and bringing us all together every year. It is so nice to catch up with friends.

    Read your interesting post and saw the pictures.. you really have great talent – love it!!

    Like

  5. Thanks to you and your family for the beautiful evening. Felt very good to celebrate Diwali in your beautiful home. Enjoyed the food and the company. Thanks for posting the pictures. And thanks for the history of Diwali. God bless your family.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Outstanding Diwali party with delicious food and ladies in georgeous saries. Thanks for hosting and posting the amazing photos with the meaning of Diwali.Wishing you and your family a very happy,
    healthy and prosperous New Year!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Spectacular!! What a gala of an evening – lively company, scrumptious food, beautiful saris – truly a feast for the heart, stomach and the eyes!!

    Kalpana and Hitesh, you really outdid yourselves. What a gorgeous evening – one to be remembered for ages! Another outstanding post, Kalpana! Thank you for the Diwali history; I now have a greater appreciation of this special event. Oh, and the photos are amazing!🤗

    Happy Diwali, one and all!🎉🎉

    Liked by 1 person

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