Tag Archives: culture

Happy Holidays

Happy Holidays

I wanted to take this opportunity to wish all my readers and wonderful supporters, and everyone who celebrates something around this time of the year, a very Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays followed by an amazing New Year full of health, laughter, and love. I am absolutely exhilarated when I hear from you, whether it’s for the feedback and suggestions you provide, our sense of unity when we can relate to one another through our experiences, or just your outright words of encouragement. Thank you!

Xmas2014

Here I have posted our humble little Christmas tree mainly decorated with trinkets and ornaments that the kids have made at school. To be honest, deciding on whether to celebrate Christmas was a bit of a cultural struggle for my husband and I initially. While we both love festive holidays, beautiful Christmas lights, the sight of Santa Claus with his white fluffy beard, and the feel of everything Christmas, we felt a bit hypocritical in celebrating it. It was almost like by giving into this celebration we may be losing a bit of our Persian identity. So we questioned ourselves, challenged one another, and eventually came to the conclusion that we would indeed be putting up a little tree to culturally connect us with the rest of America. However we were very clear to our children we did not celebrate Christmas as most others do. We were not going to be buying presents for one another. We often don’t have the luxury of visiting our parents and having a big feast with them at this time either. Instead, we will put up our festive tree, and spread the holiday cheer by donating toys to kids who didn’t have them. I feel like we have found our balance and SO FAR, we have had no complaints from the kids. We reserve the present giving and big fuss for our Persian New Year, Norooz, to make the kids extra excited about it.

It once came up during a cultural leadership seminar that I went to (specifically a PAAIA NexGen conference) , that for immigrants, it is natural to lose a part of their culture as they migrate to another country. If they didn’t, they would become a museum, rather than an integrated part of their new society. It’s true. As immigrants, we are morphed into something new, what can be a beautiful amalgam of two or more cultures. But the challenge remains; what aspects of our Persian culture do we want to leave behind, and what are essential in the keeping. Only YOU can answer this for yourself and decide what kind of amalgam you choose to be. But if we are representing the Persian culture abroad, and as we pick up new habits and traditions, I hope you will remember this for our future generation:

“He said that if culture is a house, then language was the key to the front door; to all the rooms inside. Without it, he said, you ended up wayward, without a proper home or a legitimate identity.” ― Khaled HosseiniAnd the Mountains Echoed

Wishing you all the best,

 PMSignature

Empowering Our Children to Avoid the Point of No Return

Empowering Our Children to Avoid the Point of No Return

I am beyond thrilled to bring you this helpful and constructive article written by Yalda Modabber, Golestan’s Executive Director, upon my request (and perhaps pestering) on how we can help our children learn their mother tongue, and do it before it’s too late. It’s not easy, but it can be done and Yalda and her sons are proof of that. Through her persistence and accepting the sacrifices it takes, she has empowered her own children to speak Persian, despite them being a multicultural family. I admire Yalda, not only for succeeding in her own personal mission, but her willingness to always help others with theirs. Thank you for being such a gem in our community!

Empowering Our Children to Avoid the Point of No Return

I wanted to emphasize a few points from the article that really stood out to me, but honestly ALL the recommendations are on point! I hope you found it useful, and if so, please share with your friends.