Saturday, February 25, 2017

On Donald Trump, Crunchy Bananas and our Children... A "How To" on keeping up Spirits and Sanity

The other morning at breakfast, my four year old looked, yet again somberly, at the breakfast before her.  Despite having enthusiastically selected a hodgepodge of liberally salted hard boiled egg whites on the side of toasted hamburger buns, strawberries and vanilla yogurt and a cup of milk, she still could not bring herself to enjoy her breakfast.  Her face was wrinkled, as was mine with exasperation from yet another failed attempt at assembling a palatable breakfast for my picky eater.

This one, she is quite the philosopher.  And before I could ask her why she wasn't eating, she said: "Two Things!"  Holding up two tiny fingers.  "The smells of these foods I picked, don't go with each other! And I wish Donald Trump would magically become Hillary Clinton, and the word (world) would be GREAT again".    


Despite our best efforts to protect our children from the anxiety of these times, they are alert and picking up on the mood (and the lingo) in the world today.  And even though, both at home and at school, my children are discouraged from playing games that label some as good guys and some as bad, the culture they have experienced through cartoons, books, images around them, and hanging out with their little friends, has taught them that they live in a world of good guys vs bad guys...    And the story of Donal Trump plays like a mesmerizing episode of Pokemon cartoon, so much so that my child who refuses to remember words in Farsi as simple as Yes, No,  and Thank you, seems to remember the First and Last name of the characters and can correctly affiliate them with what they stand for, if quizzed. 

Although that morning, I humorously wrote off the Donal Trump comment,  I knew that I had to make more of an effort to tend to my kids' spirits these days.  Luckily, I was a child who has lived through a revolution, a war, and immigration, all under the tutelage of a wise grandmother and loving parents, who believed that good food and fun family time can silence the ugly sound that fear, worry, and stress makes in your mind. 

I was so grateful the next day when my friend Anne had left a kind package at our door,  which included a puzzle with a beautiful image of Hindu deity (Sri Krishna), which no doubt she had picked up on one of her museum jaunts around the US...  I was doubly grateful when both girls got super excited about the puzzle, and could identify with the similarities in the image that reminded them of old Persian drawings.  After a long week and dinner at our favorite Mexican restaurant, it was so nice to relax with the puzzle on Friday night, talk about the richness of Hindu culture, and what we enjoy about all the other cultures in our community....


This morning, after weeks of my 4 year old talking about a recipe that one of her beloved teachers had taught her, we finally got around to making it.  It was so simple and delicious that I wish we had made it weeks ago, and every day since.  My girl calls it Crunchy Banana and it is a ripe yellow banana shaken in a bag of Graham Cracker Crumbs (we actually used Trader Joe's Speculous Cookies which is delicious).  She did the entire process by herself, allowing her big sister a turn at pressing a cup on the cookies in the bag to finely crush them, and half of the 10 shakes of the bag necessary to cover the banana.  The first batch we made were with cut up bananas, which were delectable, but as per my older daughter needed some styling.  I think she was much more impressed with the look of the second batch which were put on a bamboo stick...  and so it was that the morning went on with more laughter and less Trump. 


Today I remember my grandmother who lived through unimaginable ordeals and came out the other side as a kind, wise, calm, and strong matriarch, who was adamant about home cooked meals and a family gathered together for tea, as The Way to goodness.
My Grandmother - 1987 Tehran, On the eve of leaving Iran to immigrate to Canada

No comments:

Post a Comment