Happy Birthday, Miss A!

So our little Miss A had a birthday!  I can hardly believe a year has come and gone!  Obviously things change a lot with a little one added to the mix…greater responsibility, less time (for things like blogging!) … but worth every second!  She is the sweetest baby and a huge joy in our lives.  We celebrated her special day with a party with about 50 of our closest friends…basically everyone we know – and that doesn’t count any family – since we live so far away from all of our relatives (well if you look closely at the photos above, you’ll see the grandparents in attendance – via twin laptops and skype!).  We’ve made great memories over these past 12 months and are looking forward to a lifetime more to come!

Chai Survival Kit

Click to download blank recipe card.
Click to download the chai recipe card.

I recently mailed a “Chai Kit” to my favorite aunt, back home in Texas.  We got to visit her while were were home for Christmas.  While we were there, I made chai for the whole family.  Out of necessity, I outfitted my mom with all the necessary ingredients for making proper Indian chai, long ago.  My aunt saw the spice dabba,  and really liked it, and liked the homemade chai even more.  So when I got home, I decided to assemble a “Chai Kit” and mail it to her.  I included the spice dabba (I had one on hand to use as a gift), loaded with the spices that I use in my chai recipe: cardamom, cloves, cinnamon sticks, sugar (I told her she’d have to buy the fresh ginger herself!).  I also included some tea leaves, straight from India (courtesy of my Mother-in-Law, on her last visit).  The last item I included was the tea strainer – I picked up several packs of these on our last trip to India, but they last for quite a while (even running them through the dishwasher!)  So I had extras to complete the chai kit.  I also designed and printed off a recipe card, so she would be able to have the recipe handy.  It turned out to be a great surprise gift for my aunt – she loved it & is perfecting her chai making skills!  Who knows, maybe I can turn over the chai making responsibility to her on our next visit!  She’s planning on accompanying us to India this year, so maybe her skills will come in handy, did I mention she’s single?  Maybe she can nab her own Indian man!  ;-)

Do you “do” homemade chai – or Starbucks “chai-tea lattes”?  

For your enjoyment, I’m making my chai recipe card available for free download as well as a blank version of the card, in case you have your own special recipes you’d like to use.  Enjoy!

Have you read about my first experiences making chai?  Or about our”chai-dates”?

A Belated Christmas Greeting!

Miss A & the rest of us hope that your holidays were filled with this much wonder & delight!  Needless to say we had a wonderful first Christmas as a family of three.  We have been traveling nonstop for the past several weeks, my apologies for the lack of updates.  Hopefully we will get back into a normal routine now that it is the new year! Miss A has now met ALL of our family members who live in the States, including my husband’s side of the family in the Chicago area.  Now we are looking forward to our big India trip this year!  Happy New Year everyone!!!

There is a first time for everything!

My top ten favorite “Firsts” that I experienced in India:

  1. Visiting the Taj Mahal
  2. Eating with my hands
  3. Trying ketchup on pizza (I didn’t say that I liked it… I said that I tried it!)
  4. Riding an overnight train & rickshaws
  5. Wearing a Saree
  6. Riding a motorcycle
  7. Meeting my in-laws
  8. Seeing Mt. Everest (technically this happened in Nepal, but it’s my list, and how can it not be included?!)
  9. Seeing Diwali and Holi and other Indian festivals
  10. Eating jackfruit

My husband’s top ten favorite “Firsts” that he’s experienced in North America:

  1. Getting married (all together now, “Awwww”)
  2. Welcoming Miss A into the world (again….)
  3. Going through a drive through window (yep, these aren’t that common in India!)
  4. Going through a drive through car-wash (again…)
  5. Using power tools
  6. Going to Walmart at 2 in the morning
  7. Learning how to fish
  8. Learning how to swim
  9. Overeating at American Thanksgiving
  10. Seeing the Grand Canyon and Mt. Rushmore

What about you? Any “intercultural-firsts” that you want to share – what’s on your list?

Join in on the fun – Link your blog to DesiLink Blog Ring!

I wanted to tell everyone about a new project I’ve been working on. See that new little banner in my sidebar?  Introducing… DesiLink Blogs!
I LOVE to read all of your blogs about your Desi intercultural relationships… but sometimes I come across a new blog that I wasn’t even aware was out there.  It is hard to keep up with all these great sites.  So I thought it would be great to have a central hub or blog list where we could all find each other!  Through the banner, visitors will be able to navigate directly from blog to blog with the “previous” and “next” buttons.  It will potentially increase traffic to everyone’s site as well as make us more visible.   I hope you guys like the idea too.  
DesiLink Blog Ring is open to bloggers who share stories and resources related to their cross-cultural relationship – where one partner is a “Desi” – from India, Pakistan, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh or other country in Southern Asia.  

Since “intercultural relationship” is a broad term, I’m also opening it up to  bloggers who are expats, living in one of the Southern Asian countries – who blog about living and relating to the “Desi” community you live in.
So it is pretty easy to get your blog listed… visit this link to sign up and find out all about the DesiLink blog ring – and spread the word!

Download Free English Fonts That Look Like Hindi and Urdu!

I’m a graphic designer, and I love great fonts (especially free font downloads!)  How about you? Do you collect fun fonts?  You never know when cool “Hinglish” fonts like these will come in handy!  Why not download them now so you’ll have them on hand for that party invitation or craft project you’ve been working on?

Click here for other Arabic/Urdu fonts.

Not sure how to install fonts on your system?  It’s not too hard at all!  Click here to install Windows fonts… and here to learn how to install Mac fonts.