Around Town / India

A Chai and Frankenstein Fueled Weekend

I hate being sick, which is why I opt not to be. Ever. Especially not on the weekend. Not when I could be taking my 15 month old through a terrifyingly dark and under-inflated bouncy castle with 3 dozen kids all high on too many brownies. Not when I could be up at the crack of dawn decorating cookies before going to shoot a morning market, changing out of my chicken-feather covered clothes and then heading to a baby Halloween party. Not when we could be exploring new parts of town, going to a mela, going out to dinner and hanging out in the backyard.

Minus the bit of feeling like hell and Will still refusing to sleep through the night (I think we might have to cry it out after Chris’ dad leaves town) it was a good weekend.

Friday night was an Embassy-wide BBQ.  Things I would like to do again: hang out with our neighbors on the big green lawn.  Things I probably won’t do again: eat a “pulled chicken” sandwich or take my toddler through a blood-streaked bouncy castle.  It was so hard to stay on my feet in there with Will in my arms!  That I let Will convince me to take him through the maze of screaming and careening kids not once but twice is probably testament to either how much I love him or how out-of-my-mind tired I was.

The next morning I squeezed in some cookie-decorating and then headed to INA market in the early morning:

INA Early Morning_MG_1783October 26, 2012

Halloween cookies for our baby group Halloween party (where Will accidentally pulled a ceramic pumpkin off a coffee table and we had to watch it shatter into a million tiny pieces all over the play mat):

Creepy Halloween Cookies_MG_1849October 26, 2012

I realized too late that I didn’t have any Halloween cookie cutters or any meringue powder and so improvised with creepy looking gingerbread men shapes and neon green milk/powdered sugar icing. I used my mom’s recipe (slightly salty cookies with a hit of nutmeg and slightly too sweet frosting with a hit of almond) but have yet to figure out how to decorate my cookies as beautifully and perfectly as she does hers).

Saturday afternoon we found a turkish cafe at Mehar Chand, an upscale but still local-ish market over by Lodhi Gardens. The backlava was fantastic.  Next time we’re hoping Will will let us sit down long enough to order some Turkish coffee.

At the AWA mela on Sunday, we stopped by an artist’s booth and found this pair of peacocks painted on some old Jaipur property bills from 1942.  There’s a big trend now it seems to buy up old and antique legal papers here in India and cover them in artwork.  The artist we bought this piece from said he paid 1 lakh for a box full of hundreds and hundreds of sheets of old documents and papers.  This piece was one of the best we saw at the mela.  We loved the different textures and the bright blue stamps, the spidery old script and the way the chemicals in the paint and the paper reacted in interesting ways along the birds’ necks.  The price was right so we, somewhat unexpectedly, took it home.

Art on old Jaipur Property Documents_MG_1985October 27, 2012

Art on old Jaipur Property Documents_MG_1986October 27, 2012

After the mela on Sunday we took it mostly easy while Will played outside pretending to water the flowers and pick the basil for us and then stripped down to splash around with his water table.  Later in the afternoon, he took a nap while his dad and I enjoyed a stay-at-home date over a 2pm batch of blueberry buttermilk pancakes (1 cup milk + 3 T lemon juice = buttermilk).  I think it had been over a year since we’d made real, American-style pancakes at home, but it certainly won’t be a year before we make them again.

Will 15 Months_MG_1932October 26, 2012

Will 15 Months_MG_1943October 26, 2012

How was your weekend? What did you get up to?

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8 thoughts on “A Chai and Frankenstein Fueled Weekend

  1. I adore the peacocks on the legal papers. Definitely the style of art we like as well. The colors are so lovely too!! I LOVE your green Halloween gingerbread men cookies. I love all the black stitches!

    • I also love how neat it is to look at up close, lots of texture. The guy said not to put it behind glass which I completely understand–it’s something that should be seen and touched but…we live in India and I woke up with grey something caked around my nostrils after sleeping indoors. I think the peacocks will have to go under glass!

  2. I love Will’s mischievous little grin in the last photo! There is an embassy Halloween party tomorrow with a “creepy buffet.” I found a recipe for spider cupcakes and have tried in vain to locate chocolate sprinkles and black licorice (what was I thinking? I don’t know) all over the city, but to no avail. I had thought about ordering them online early last week but didn’t know if they’d get here on time. All of our baking supplies are in our HHE, which is supposed to arrive Thursday! One day after I need everything of course.

  3. I want the peacock art to go with my peacock-themed bedroom! I must have been missing India myself this weekend — I bought an overpriced but beautiful photo of the Varanasi silk weaving center while stocking up on Sandy provisions at Eastern Market. (Translation: buying 6 kinds of charcuterie, a free range duck, and Merguez sausage.)

    • You have a peacock-themed bedroom?? THis I have to see next time we are in DC. SO glad Sandy didn’t totally knock you guys out! (but love your “provisions!”)

  4. I still can’t believe anyne or anything could make me nostalgic about India and here you are 🙂 btw – we have a lovely lotus-flower-over-property-bill hanging in our kitchen.

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