Navaratri Golu in America

Importance of Navaratri

Navaratri, as the word defines itself –nine (Nava) nights (ratri) is a Hindu festival. During these nine days (and nights) Goddess Durga or Shakti-The goddess of Power is worshiped and it culminates with Vijayadashami, the tenth day when the goddess kills the Demon Mahishasur and protects the humanity .In South India, there is a tradition of keeping golu at homes. Navarathri golu is display of dolls in many tiers or steps (padis) mainly in odd numbers of 5, 7, 9 or 11.

Much about the importance of it has been vividly explained by my fellow bloggers .The following are some of the links that explain much about the great festival :-


Golu at my Place

It’s this time of the year which I always look forward to.

It’s been three years since I started keeping Golu. I had a great time this Navratri too and I have tried to be better each year. Since not many festivals can be celebrated with the same fervor as in India, Golu helps me and my friends to have a feel of at least one of them (the navarthri) .Also our kids have a taste of Indian traditions& rituals and we ladies get a chance to get adorned in Indian attire.

I would say that procuring the golu padis for Golu in America is pretty easy. As most of us are always on a move from one city to another empty cartons of milk and other stuff (cabinets and its drawers) can be turned into Golu padis.I keep collecting the empty cartons near the time of September each year and recycle it( no much space to store them at home).


Golu-2009

The first year I kept Golu, I had all the stuffed toy of my little one .I wasn’t actually prepared for it. I did purchase some Indian Gods & Goddesses’ idols from Indian Stores nearby but could not get as much to fill all the Golu Padis. My favorite are the dollar stores where you can get more dolls for less money . I spent $20 for the toys.And Spring is the season when you can see colors in America .It holds good for the 99c stores too. Navratri generally comes in the fall season and I feel I am restricted to only some Halloween stuff at that time.so start collecting in spring .

Ultimately I feel it’s the devotion and bhakti is what matters most and I felt we could worship and find god in anything we see.


Golu 2009
Golu 2009
Mario is my chettiar bommai
Mario is my chettiar bommai

Golu-2010

Later the next year(2010) ,I had gathered some more ideas from the internet and I have seen some very pretty Golus In America . I have seen many bloggers who have put pictures on about how they have new ways of crafting these dolls and other decorations .These bloggers are my inspiration and they help me improve myself. I made a Durga‘s photo for last year’s Golu which I used this year too .I made it using paper quelling.

These are some of the websites for paper Quelling:-



durga made of paper quelling
durga made of paper quelling
Golu 2010
Golu 2010
park
park

Golu-2011

This navratri I had a better collection of golu dolls as I had been to India for visiting my family .I got a good amount of them from my mom & mother-in-law .Mainly my Mother-in -law as she has been keeping golu all this years .I got many of her golu Bommai whichever were light in weight ….

My hubby enhanced the beauty Golu Padis by adding serial lights of orange color (the Halloween effect) this year. I had set up 5 padis which i decorated with gods in 1& 2 steps. In the third i arranged it with people .In the fourth i kept animals of all kinds and on the fifth i kept vegetables.


The complete Golu 2011
The complete Golu 2011
rangoli
rangoli
Rail symbolizing trichy junction, tamilnadu
Rail symbolizing trichy junction, tamilnadu
Pillayar kovil
Pillayar kovil
trichy teppakulam
trichy teppakulam
The whole park with Ganesh temple ,huts ,water tank ,trees,Rail track ,Parking Lot,Airport
The whole park with Ganesh temple ,huts ,water tank ,trees,Rail track ,Parking Lot,Airport

For the Park


  • I designed a Kovil (temple) on a hill (I imagine it that way) made of paper with steps.
  • One coconut tree.
  • 2 orange trees and two trees which signified the fall season (orange leaves).
  • I added an Engine on tracks from my son’s toy house.
  • One teppakulam (a water tank near a temple) with birds and animals around. Also I added some huts to show people inhabiting around.
  • I had two robots from my son’s toys which represented people in a park.
  • A rangoli which I made of rice powder and food color .

Here in America sand is easy available in nearby play areas. I used green food color to mix with the sand to represent the greenery around. My mother-in-law had asked me to sow some fenugreek seeds in the sand to represent the green plants. I wasn’t sure if any seedling would grow in sand but it sure did.


Golu 2012

Everybody would be equally busy setting up the Golu themes for this year(2013) .

Last year(2012) my mother in-law came to visit us around the golu time and she brought many golu toys for us .I was totally elated seeing the toys. Here i have my last years pics for all of you

Thanks for all your comments,encouragement and Interest ..That always helps me do better .

GOLU2012

MARAPACHI BOMMAI

The Marriage set

I made the mandapam using cardboard box and  decorated with Pompoms
I made the mandapam using cardboard box and decorated with Pompoms

I hope you all like my golu photos. Do send me you inputs.

Comments 19 comments

Trsmd profile image

Trsmd 5 years ago from India

Nice celebration with colorful gallery..instead of gods, toys were in the gallery looks different and liked enjoyment in foreign country...


jayshreerajakumar profile image

jayshreerajakumar 5 years ago Author

Thanks Trsmd for the comments !! Yes !! Its true that the Golu Steps are mostly decked with toys instead of God's Idol.I think with time i will have a good collection of Gods too ...

Thanks Again


raakachi profile image

raakachi 5 years ago from Madurai / Tamilnadu / India

First my hearty welcome to you to step in the 'Hubpages'. I think, from the golu decoration, you are from 'Trichy'. Is my guess o.k? The hub has been written in homely style, which is always inhabited by Tamilian culture. voted as beautifil! and also happy to follow you. Bye...


jayshreerajakumar profile image

jayshreerajakumar 5 years ago Author

Thanks Raakachi for your encouragement.My father is from Trichy.I started the park for golu by making a small Ganapathi temple since i had many Ganesha's idols . Later my husband gave an idea to convert it into a trichy junction .It was fun creating the park .


sankari.nayagam profile image

sankari.nayagam 5 years ago

Good photos Jayshree! You have added value to your golu by posting the photos and writing about it! Keep writing!


Anil and Honey profile image

Anil and Honey 4 years ago from Kerala

Jayasree your hub is grate,especially as an Indian i am very happy.You can increase our dignity.


jayshreerajakumar profile image

jayshreerajakumar 4 years ago Author

Thank you so much Anil & Honey .I appreciate your thoughts.I am elated :)


Anil and Honey profile image

Anil and Honey 4 years ago from Kerala

Thank you very much


Anil and Honey profile image

Anil and Honey 4 years ago from Kerala

Thank you very much


ritu 4 years ago

Hi... lovely everything looks... please can u tell me where u bought those kitchen sets and fruits from ... i am looking for places where i can find such things.. even a cricket set or so for my park .. this is my first yr in the us n my first yr after wedding... so want to make this really wonderful... appreciate ur time to reply

thanks


jayshreerajakumar profile image

jayshreerajakumar 4 years ago Author

Hi Ritu

You are sure to make wonderful Golu .I got the Fruits from India .But i am sure you get it here too at various kids store like Toys r us /Lakeshore ( which i found a bit costly ). Try a 99c store to start with.I bought the small kitchen set, car set,stones for decoration,magnetic fruits from there the first year .Friends with little kids always have these extra toys. Try these links :

1. http://www.etsy.com/listing/106415454/vintage-mini...

2. http://www.tts-group.co.uk/shops/tts/Products/PD17...

Good Luck

Jayshree


Shankar, New Delhi 3 years ago

Wonderful work. Keep up the spirit Jayshree Ma'm


jayshreerajakumar profile image

jayshreerajakumar 3 years ago Author

Thank you so much for the encouragement Mr Shankar...


shreelatha 3 years ago

It's a wonderful work keep it up.


Mamta 3 years ago

That is awesome!! Please don't mind as I am going to copy some ideas from you. I really appreciate your work.


jayshreerajakumar profile image

jayshreerajakumar 3 years ago Author

Thanks Shreelata and Mamta .... :)


priya 3 years ago

nice photo's of ur golu and i like it very very much :)


Es Vee 2 months ago

Lovely! Thanks for the ideas. What do you give as thumbulam? Hard to find vetthalai paaku.


jayshreerajakumar profile image

jayshreerajakumar 2 months ago Author

Thanks Es Vee

I try to find some Stainless steel bowls at the stores ...not too expensive ones .. If i have an India trip ..i find some there . else some plastic containers with lids does fine with fruits ,turmeric powder, kumkum etc

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