It is your first day after marriage and you are feeling nervous. On top of it, your mother-in-law wants you to cook dal, chawal, sabzi and definitely a sweet dish for lunch. You are panicking, because the pallu of your saree or your poor cooking skills are adding to your nervousness of pleasing your in-laws. Sounds like a newlywed's nightmare, right?
All soon-to-be brides, who are right now busy with selecting their perfect wedding outfit, making guest lists and booking the best makeup artist, you must read this to make a flawless entry into your new home. It is time you learn a few important lessons to impress your in-laws from the very moment you step in their family. So, we have prepared a short guide that will tell you all the things you need to learn before you enter your new household.
#1. Ashirwad (blessings)
Whenever you are introduced to an elderly person in the family, you must touch their feet to take their ashirwad (blessings). If you are wearing a saree, then be careful of your pallu. You should tie it firmly in place with safety pins, to save yourself from the embarrassment of it falling off.
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Some elders expect the newly-wedded bride to cover her head while taking ashirwad. While you may not believe in this custom; you still would not hurt their sentiments. So, just cover your head for a while to make them happy.
#2. Griha Pravesh (entering the new home)
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During your griha pravesh, you will be welcomed into your new house by your mom-in-law, with an aarti. You will have to enter the house with your right foot first. Remember, this is an important part of the custom. Whether you are stepping in a tray of kumkum (vermillion) or toppling the kalash (pot) filled with rice, right foot comes first.
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Image Courtesy: Robin Saini Photography
Also, if you want this entire ceremony to go smoothly, take off your heels beforehand and wear some comfortable slip-ons. You will have to remove your footwear for these ceremonies, and you would not want to struggle with removing your sandals at the doorsteps as your mom-in-laws awaits with the puja ki thali.
#3. Morning prayers and routine
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In most Indian homes, morning prayers are a daily ritual. Well, even if you are not too religious, you still would not want to offend your elders with your aloofness. So, brush your memory of a few basic aartis. Also in few Indian homes, there is a custom of eating only after performing the morning prayers. Hence, check with your husband about the traditions of your new home beforehand.
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Other than this, it is generally a good idea to get up early in the morning, take a bath, and then help your mom-in-law with the day’s preparations.
#4. Draping a saree
During your wedding, a bunch of people will be helping you to get dressed up. But in your new house, you will be alone. So, learn how to drape a saree properly. Before you start draping your saree, always wear your sandals to determine the overall height. Your pleats should be neat and firmly in place.
Use safety pins to fasten them well. For a puja, place the pallu on the head and opt for a simple blouse. For other occasions, do not hesitate to experiment with the draping style and the blouse.
Well, if you are not too used to wearing a saree, then make sure you read this first before you step out: 7 Mistakes You Should Never Make While Wearing a Saree
#5. The customary meetha (sweet dish)
Maybe your in-laws would not expect you to be an expert cook, but as a part of the custom, you will be required to make one sweet dish on your first day after marriage. Kheer is one of the easiest desserts to make. All you need to do is boil milk till it becomes thick and then add sugar, rice and dry fruits. Stir it on a low temperature.
If you are looking for more easy and quick recipe ideas for your first dish, then Read: 3 Easy Ideas for Your First Dish as a Bride
Before your wedding, practice how to make a good kheer or any other meetha (bake some cupcakes or a cake if you think your in-laws might like that!). Your first mouth-watering sweet dish will help you to get in your mother-in-law’s good books.
#6. Expand your cooking knowledge
Well, it is not necessary that your in-laws will want you to stay in the kitchen at all times. But, basic cooking skills will come handy to make a good impression. So, familiarise yourself with different vegetables, lentils and spices. Take a crash course in cooking with a simple dal and a couple of simple vegetables like aloo jeera, bhindi and so on.
We are sure, you would like to amaze your mom-in-law with your skills of making round chapattis and pooris at the first go; so practice daily.
If you are a tech-savvy bride with a smartphone in hand, then Read: 5 Best and Easy Cooking Apps for Tech-Savvy Indian Brides
#7. Basic makeup
Brush up your basic knowledge of makeup before you get married. Kohl, mascara, lip gloss, foundation, makeup remover, moisturiser, eye shadow, blushes, and brushes are the product you require in your makeup kit. Before you apply makeup, always clean your face, dab it dry and apply a moisturiser. Next, start applying a foundation on your face and follow it up with an eye shadow and kajal, and blush. Apply your lip gloss and you are good to go!
We got so many emails from our female readers asking us about things that are "traditionally" expected from a newlywed Indian bahu, and that they should keep in mind while entering their new home. So, this one is for all those readers. We feel that some of the above points may seem outdated in the 21st century. But, the sad reality is that still there is a major section of our society that expects not just these but many more such things from married women. Well, what is your take on this? Do share with us in the comment section below.