The fragrance of jasmine was wafting through the air. I was sitting cross-legged in my favorite spot, savoring piping hot ginger chai and rocking the swing gently. The morning sun was shimmering through the trees and adding the pleasant warmth to a chilly spring morning. Leo was snoozing under my swing, probably too tired after a night FULL of sleep! These are the precious few minutes, when I have time to feel my breath, taste my tea, think my thoughts, and look at the blooming roses. 

I counted the little green tomatoes and made a mental note to show the kids when they are back from school. Spinach, mint, lemons, peaches,  strawberries, and blueberries were growing well and looking healthy.  The pumpkin seeds that we sowed just a few weeks ago were sprouting strong-looking leaves as well. My little one is particularly excited about this one, as we are growing pumpkins for the first time. A bunch of snails were busy chomping on my ghost-pepper plant. These days, they are feasting only on these super-spicy pepper leaves and leaving all other plants alone!  

      As I cupped my hands around the mug to feel the warmth, a decade-old memory of another beautiful morning came rushing. My then preschooler was sitting close to me singing ‘dohe’ while playing with Thomas Engine, and I was buried in a book with a cup of ginger tea. Then too, there was a fragrance of jasmine in the air. With this, also came memories of her and a wave of gratitude!

When I was a new mom, I used to follow a young and witty blogger, full of unconventional ideas and a refreshing outlook on life. Her every post was packed with wisdom, innocence, and humor.  I don’t think she writes anymore and I don’t remember if I thanked/commented on her posts often but I always looked forward to her blogs. The best way to repay someone’s kindness is to pay it forward, right? Once this blogger suggested,  that instead of teaching toddlers/preschoolers conventional nursery rhymes, which are often meaning-less and in some cases really inappropriate, why don’t we teach them something more sensible and engaging like couplets from renowned mystic Kabirdas? These nuggets of wisdom are packaged in two lines making them suitable for little ones to memorize and also easy enough for us to teach. 

I loved the idea and tried it at home. For a long time, it was part of our daily routine to learn a new couplet every day (or repeat) and discuss its meaning. It was always fascinating to get children’s perspectives/interpretations about the same. Often little kids are far wiser than we think they are.  

धीरे धीरे रे मना, धीरे सब कुछ होय।

माली सींचे सौ घडा, ऋतू आए फल होए।।

Dheere Dheere Re Mana, Dheere Sub Kutch Hoye,
Mali Seenche So Ghara, Ritu Aaye Phal Hoye!

Rough Translation: Have patience my mind, things happen when the time is right.
The Gardener works hard and waters a plant with 100 pots, fruit arrives when the season is right!

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जिन खोजा तिन पाइया, गहरे पानी पैठ।

मैं बपुरा बूडन डरा, रहा किनारे बैठ ।।

Jin Khoja Tin Paiya, Gahare Paanee Paith.

Main Bapura Boodan Dara, Raha Kinaare Baith.

Rough Translation: Those who have the courage to dive into deep water will definitely find something,

but those who have been sitting on the shore for fear of drowning will not benefit from it.

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Many years later, I doubt kids remember most of the words anymore, but I hope the meaning is ingrained at a much deeper level! In any case, I have a bucket full of lovely memories and a bunch of adorable videos 😉 

  If you have kids in the family, do try it. You will love it and so will the children 🙂  

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Deepali P

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