Saturday, April 28, 2012

Macleod Ganj

Out and about in Macleod Ganj is a fun experience, small streets lined with shops and stands selling all sorts of good. But the fun part for me was seeing all the signs:

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Norbulingka Museum

The Norbulingka museum near Dharamsala is a beautifully peaceful space both indoors and outside. The lush garden complete with stream and highlighted with prayer flags was a total sanctuary. The outdoor area is surrounded by colorfully painted buildings that house artist workshops, lodging, a cafe, temple and shop. Their mission is the preserve and encourage Tibetan arts. You can read about it here: norbulingka

Sunday, April 22, 2012


From Macleod Ganj we took three walks. During the first two it was overcast and rained a bit or a lot. The third was gorgeous. We were even treated to thousands of white butterflies fluttering above our heads as we walked on the grassy paths. It's too bad I could capture them in my photos. But, here are some others:

The first glimpse of the snow-capped mountains as we drove towards Macleod Ganj:

Red sari so bright in the green field:
Loved the blue sky:

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Mani stones and prayer flags...

Last week, I went to Macleod Ganj, near Dharamshala, in the state of Himachal Pradesh in northern India. It was quite a trip! After the long journey from Delhi, our first outing was a walk on the path that takes you around the base of the hill that holds the residence of the Dalai Lama. No, we did not see him but supposedly he was at home. It was a beautiful, sunny afternoon and the hillside was covered in color--mani stones and prayer flags.

Since I found the mani stones and prayer flags so beautiful and I realized that I really knew nothing about them, when I got home I looked them up. Here's what I found: mani stones are rocks that have the Tibetan mantra, om mani padme hum, which translates to "hail to the jewel in the lotus" (at least that's what wikipedia tells me). They are placed along roads, paths or rivers as an offering to the spirits of place. Then I found out from the British Museum website (museum) that saying the mantra is "an invocation of Mahavidya, the great goddess of knowledge. This magical sound is believed to reverberate throughout the entire universe as the triumphant power of freedom." The triumphant power of freedom, that sounds so nice.

And as for the prayer flags, they are decorated with auspicious symbols, mantras and prayers. They are supposed to bring happiness and prosperity to the person who hangs it and are placed outside so that the wind can carry the prayers across the countryside.

Near the end of the walk, there was a small wooden structure with this sign above:
The door was closed but I would have loved to see the mani stone carver at work.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Yoga time

We've spent some time recently at Lodi Garden, one of our favorites spots in Delhi. We must get there early before it gets too hot. But, it's great to walk around, people watch or just sit and have a snack. The other day, we met our good friend who did some yoga with Dorian:

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Easter at Lodi Garden

I took the boys out Sunday morning for an egg hunt, stories and crafts at Lodi Garden. It was so well-organized and the boys had such fun!

The boys help decorate the trees with carrots:

 My little bunnies:

 Egg dyeing:

Arthur patiently waits for his eggs to dry:

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Dorian's 6th...

At the beginning of April, we celebrated Dorian's 6th birthday. He knew exactly what he wanted from balloons to mehendi to puppets to the special cake. It was a fun morning spent with good friends. And, I just can't believe my sweet baby is six years old!

Patiently awaiting the arrival of his guests, D has mehendi done:

The back outside area of our place is all dressed up:

Front side for the Rajastani puppets:
Rocket ship birthday cake:

Birthday dinner out at Hard Rock:

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Sunday Outing

It's been a few weeks since our beach vacation to Thailand and the heat is really starting to settle in Delhi, so what is the polar opposite?

Yes, today we joined some friends and took our boys ice skating for the very first time ever. Dorian loved his penguin helper:

 X just whizzed by...
 Arthur would not go on the ice but he enjoyed watching everyone:
And, I had fun skating around. What I found really nice were the "skate marshals", dressed in blue and yellow, that would skate around helping out when needed:
A fun Sunday outing...and great way to stay out of the heat. We'll be back!
For those of you visiting or living in Delhi, the ice rink is at the Ambience Mall in Gurgaon. It opens at 10am and it's worth getting there right at opening before the crowd comes. You pay for a time slot i.e. 10-11:15, 11:30-12:45, etc. Enjoy!