Articles from October, 2010

Sunday, October 31st, 2010

Diwali Recipe: Kheer

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Diwali Recipe: Kheer
As much as Diwali is a festival of lights, it is also a festival of sweets. There are so many amazing sweet dishes made in celebration of Diwali. Here we present one of them, Kheer, an Indian rice pudding. Serves 4

Ingredients:
1/2 cup basmati rice, washed and drained
4-5 cups milk
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1 tablespoon rose water (optional but worth it)

 Read more »

Self Realization

I can remember as a small child thinking that every family was just like my own; I had no base of experience to think otherwise.  Read more »

Real Intercultural Family in Montenegro: German and Serbian

Welcome Thomas and Zagorka! Where are you from? Thomas: Germany Zaga: Montenegro Where do you currently live? Thomas: Montenegro but we also have an apartment in Germany How many different houses have you lived in since you've been together? Thomas: three (two in Montenegro and one in Germany) How did you meet? Thomas: Work.  Read more »

East Meets West Parenting

Buddhism began for me as it did for many converts in the West: I saw an inspiring TV show about Asian philosophy at the age of 16, read some books and began meditating.  Read more »

A Religion of Spring

The Baha'i Faith was born in the spring, in 1863, in a garden in Baghdad. During Ridvan, the festival that commemorates that beginning, Baha'is around the world celebrate the declaration of Baha'u'llah, whose claim to be the Promised One foretold by all the religions of the past was astonishing to some, incredible to others and to a few, the answer to long search and much prayer.  Read more »

No Common Mother Tongue

A lot of resources on the web talk about the two most successful approaches in multilingual parenting: "One Parent One Language" (OPOL) and "Minority Language at Home" (MLAH or ML@H). Both have advantages and both are tailored to pretty specific situations. MLAH works best in an expat environment for example, where both parents speak a common language but live abroad with their children.  Read more »

On Beauty and Adoption

A simple fact of adoption is the likelihood your child will not physically resemble you and your extended family. No well-meaning aunts at the holidays will observe how your son got Grandpa's nose (poor thing) or how it was lucky the children got their father's straight teeth, because it could've just as easily gone the other way. And in your own quiet moments, you may look at your little one, and although your gaze is full of love and wonder, you may have no existing frame of reference for his beauty because it is unfamiliar to you.  Read more »

A Real American Family

I have one of those families that turn heads. I usually don’t notice. I am too busy shooshing everyone because we are also very loud. But every now and then I notice people have no clue what to make of us and look at us quite perplexed. I am the mother of 6 kids. We are a family of 8. My husband was raised in NYC and is Jewish by culture.  Read more »

A Complicated Journey: Raising a Jewish-Chinese Daughter

Both my husband and myself are used to living our lives as members of minorities; being aliens in a land not of our birth nor of our culture phases neither of us. In fact it feels quite natural. Perhaps it allows us to be fitting parents to our daughter, who, like each of us, was born into a culture quite different than the one in which she resides.  Read more »

Parenting: A Horse of Many Colors

As a nanny, I get to watch parenting. Being in people's homes and caring for their children is necessarily intimate. Up close everyone's eccentricities are magnified, so I get a good view. Each job and new family brings a different set of expectations and assumptions about what ideal parenting should be. I also came into the field with my own set of ideas based on how I was raised.  Read more »

Myths of Multilingual Families

In some families, children become bilingual. When a child interacts with one or more caretakers in a language on a regular basis, he or she learns to use that language. The key to learning languages in the home—whether one, two, or even more—is interaction. Interaction involves speaking and listening. In many intercultural families, however, children do not become bilingual.  Read more »

A World Apart from my Mother-in-Law

It wasn't until we adopted our daughter Willow that the full scale of the communication gulf between my husband's parents and me became plain. Born in southern China, educated as engineers in Hong Kong, and having raised their two sons in suburbs of Boston and Houston, my parents-in-law had a range of life experiences I would never fully comprehend.  Read more »

Diwali: November 5th

Diwali, the Festival of Lights, is one of the most vibrant and exciting Hindu celebrations. It is full of color and reverie, representing the philosophy behind it. The festival celebrates the triumph of good over evil and awareness of one's own inner light against a backdrop of fireworks, sweets, new clothes, decorating and cleaning homes, lighting lanterns and diyas (small oil lamps made of clay), exchanging gifts and drawing henna designs on hands.  Read more »

Adventures in Raising Trilingual Kids

Welcome to my blog! I am bringing up my children, Schmoo and Pan-Pan, to speak three languages: English, Twi and French. I started learning French at school (age 11) and loved it so much I ended up studying it to MA level (age 26). So after all those years of struggling to learn another language I wanted to give my kids the easy option! As my husband grew up in Ghana, he speaks fluent Twi, so it was easy to add this third language into the mix.  Read more »

Circumcision Wars

Multicultural marriages are sometimes hard, sometimes war, sometimes sweet and sometimes exciting, but one thing is for sure—multicultural marriages are more tiring than marriages between people from one culture because you have to spend more energy understanding and sometimes adopting, or in my case fighting, a new set of customs and beliefs. What is more, when children come into the picture, multicultural marriages can become even more complicated in deciding whose set of beliefs the child will adopt.  Read more »
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