This is the first year of our marriage and everything is special, every festival is special, every occasion is special...... Its Ganesh Chaturthi and my husband said he always used to get together with friends, do the pooja and do the nimarjam on the 5th or 7th day in one of the close by lakes. That made me think, where do we do nimarjanam this year, since we cannot go very far in the lake the idol will be touching people's feet who play and swim at the lake. That thought made me very uncomfortable. All the Indian stores around here had either paper mesh ones, or the hard kind, that you know will not melt. Well, then I started browsing for options. I wanted to make sure that the Ganesh I use for Chaturdhi is suitable for eco-friendly nimarjanam - can be immersed in water where it melts away easily and does not contain anything harmful. I read on some site that "The immersion symbolizes his return from the earth after removing the obstacles and unhappiness of his devotees". I also ran into this site e-coexist, an org in India making biodegradable eco-friendly Ganesh. Then I thought why not I try to make one on my own.
Turned out, I am not too bad.
Here is my eco-friendly Ganesh
I made the umbrella using a plastic salsa cup from Walmart, it was the right shape I wanted, but it had legs that I found hard to remove. I had to heat up a knife and cut them off, the plastic was very hard, be very careful. I pasted some red cloth I had and decorated it.
Here are some "making of" eco-friendly Ganesh pics: