“Winter is an etching, spring a watercolor, summer an oil painting, and autumn a mosaic of them all.” – by poet Stanley Horowitz.
An art metaphor to describe the seasons, how fitting!! Autumn has finally arrived here in the Bay Area, which means for our gardens it’s time to plant spring-flowering seeds, bulbs, and plants. I’ve written a few articles about the best bulbs and seeds to plant in the fall for amazing out of this world color in the spring. Let me share a few of those along with some photos. Continue reading “Winter is an etching, spring a watercolor, summer an oil painting, …→
One of my twins Rani takes cello lessons and she informed me a few weeks ago that she is ready for an adult or rather a big cello instrument. “What’s wrong with the one you have? I asked her. It looked pretty big to me already.
We recently celebrated the Indian autumn festival of Navratri – a ten-day, nine-night festival celebrated every year between September – October. Navratri is observed in various ways depending on what region of India one is from and is the most important Indian festival only second to Diwali. Navratri symbolizes the victory of positive energy over negativity
What is Navratri?
Navratri means ‘nine nights’ in Sanskrit; Nav meaning Nine and Ratri meaning nights. During these nine nights and ten days, the three forms of the goddess are invoked — Durga (the goddess of strength/ Mother earth/positive energy), Lakshmi (goddess of wealth and purity) and Saraswathi (goddess of wisdom, music, arts and knowledge). Navratri is at its core an art festival that celebrates the victory of good over evil. Women and girls take a central stage at this festival, as this is a celebration of famine qualities such as dance, music, arts, nature and nurture.
What is it about art and nature that go hand in hand? Nature in it’s endless character inspires all artists. I thought what better place to have an art show than in nature? An art show in the garden to showcase my eldest daughter Sridevi’s art.
Over the last month we have received many deliveries of organic heirloom tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, eggplants, peppers, and squash from our neighbor Jim. Every summer Jim drops off bags and bags of homegrown vegetables. Hundreds of heirloom tomatoes, tons of squash, eggplant, and peppers in odd shapes, colors and sizes. See a pattern in the vegetables? Very Italian they are – that’s because Jim’s family is from Italy. During one of our conversations he mentioned that he has been growing beans from 100-year old seeds that his grandfather brought with him from Italy.
My dear friend Roli invited the twins and I for afternoon tea over the summer to see her new home that she had just moved into. I was very happy for Roli and her family’s new dwelling and looked forward to spending an afternoon with her. The joy, the pride, the excitement of new beginnings, and memories to come in a new home is a feeling that is truly special.
I had a very eventful few days. Over this past Labor Day weekend I was in Houston, Texas. I know you are probably wondering why would I go there with all the flooding and damage and relief efforts going on from the devastation that Hurricane Harvey has caused. I wasn’t there on a fun excursion believe me, my dear cousin Shawn passed away, literally a couple days after the storm hit Houston.
I flew to Dallas where my brother lives as the Houston airport hadn’t opened yet for incoming flights. I flew out Friday night, and my brother and I drove Saturday morning from Dallas to Houston, a 3- hour drive to attend Shawn’s memorial service Saturday afternoon. The waters had receded on the roads we took to Houston and in the areas around where the service was held in Sugarland, Texas. However driving around the city we could see everywhere the debris left behind by Hurricane Harvey.
My cousin Shawn was 56 years young, a warm and kind-hearted man. I grew up with Shawn and his three brothers Nando, Prem and Pradeep in Houston, Texas. Our two homes were just a few miles from each other, we spent practically every weekend at each other’s homes. That’s the beauty of having family close by, it’s easy to build life-long bonds.
When I got married and moved away from Texas, Shawn and I still saw each other over the years for special occasions such as birthdays and weddings, and sometimes when Shawn was in California on business trips he would stop by and say hello.
Speaking to Shawn’s brothers I found out that Shawn had been really sick for a few months now – suffering very badly as they explained. Shawn had severe diabetes and had been on dialysis for a few years but the disease was taking a toll on his body. He eventually passed away after several months of health related complications. Continue reading Shawn. The Most Kind-Hearted Man We Called Our Cousin→
Driving around the neighborhood I always notice signs for garage sales, real estate signs, open houses, and For Rent signs. I usually overlook all these signs as I’m on a mission to get somewhere and to get things done. Some of these signs do intrigue me. Signs like Apricots for Sale, Dried Fruits for Sale, Persimmons Self Serve, Local Honey, and Artist Open Studio. I tend to drive right past these signs as well and think, “I will stop by next time.” But next time never seems to happen.
My dear friend Rose came over for lunch to celebrate my birthday back in July and since my birthday is during the summer break that meant at least one child was home from school. On this afternoon it was Anjali who joined us for our super light, fresh, and healthy lunch soiree. Here is a look at our birthday lunch menu.
We had just picked over 30 apples from our apple tree, after picking over 20 apples just a few days earlier, and even more few days before that. These apples were taking over my counter and the refrigerator drawers.
Mind you we have just one apple tree and its not that big, but that little tree has over 300 apples this year. I told Hitesh we need to stop picking the apples as we can’t go through them fast enough and I don’t have space for my other vegetables and fruits, but he said he doesn’t want them eaten by the critters, so he goes out and picks a bunch of apples every few days. He wants me to make a couple of apple pies or as he put it “Get creative, you can do it!”Continue reading Swimming in Summertime Apples from the Garden→