Most of you might already know from the last post The story behind the edible Dandiyas that for the last few days we have been trying to introduce our kids to the Indian heritage. Our festivities, celebrations, food and culture. Today, we live in a diverse society and irrespective of our religion, cast, creed, geographies and culture we celebrate festivals from around the world in our homes and schools and workplaces. In today’s world it is important to understand and appreciate cultural dynamics. It is equally important for young children to understand their own cultural heritage, so that when they interact with children from other cultures, they understand why do we do, what we do? Why do we dress up the way we do? Why do we eat certain foods on certain days and practice certain traditions and rituals? Bringing about cultural awareness, helps the child realize that we are not all the same. Some are similar while others are different and it’s absolutely alright either ways.
So talking about Indian festivities, besides Navratri, we have also been talking to them about Dusshera. The festival that celebrates the victory of good over evil. Different states of India celebrate it differently. One of the stories from the Hindu epic, Ramayana is that Ravana (a demon with 10 heads) had abducted Rama’s wife Sita. Dussehra is the day that Rama killed Ravana and his end meant the end of bad and evil spirits. Back home the folk drama on the battle between Ram and Ranava called the Ramlila is recited and played in various parts of the country.
- Open Sandwich Ravana by Anvita
I made this for my 3 year old son A. Using some of his favorites like black beans, carrots, cucumbers,bell peppers ,red berries, cilantro and bread, this Ravana turned out to be a cute one. Feel free to spread some butter, cream cheese, nut butter or even a chutney or spread according to your child’s likes / dislikes. To make it healthier choose a brown bread. I baked some Amish White Bread at home, so I used that.
A helped me putting the raspberry crowns on the head. He is obsessed by the fact that a living being can have 10 ten heads. For him, Ravana misbehaved sohe had to deal with a consequence of being punished and he got a Time-Out.
- Pizza headed Ravana by Soniya
My kids R2 & R3 are older. 3 and 8 respectively. They love pizzas, specially on a Friday’s when they want to eat something different from the usual routine food. So last Friday I made them bite size Zucchini crust pizzas. Then the fun began. We used these bite size pizzas to make our 10 headed Ravana. I put together a dip for the kids which R2 decided to keep in between the pizzas and our Ravana had 10 pizza heads and 1 extra head from the dip :)
It was a great way to have some fun at the dinner table while the kids got to learn something new. Feeling accomplished.
Would love to hear what some of you other moms are doing for Dussehra with your kids and family.Wishing you all a Happy Dussehra.
Anvita & Soniya