I usually like to involve the kids in activities that I find mundane, especially on a weekend. They spice up such activities with their energy and enthusiasm and also learn to be responsible. I get them to clean their room, put their things back where they belong etc...
Often I have had cake baking sessions that have involved not just my own two tots, but the neighbourhood children as well.
And it is a lot of fun.
Every child participates, breaking eggs, whipping the mixture, adding butter, milk etc...later, watching the cake rise in the oven. Their excitement is totally infectious! And when the cake is done, their pride is unmistakable.
Now I understand why community cooking especially during festivals was such a common and acceptable form of life in many Northern villages. It took the burden off one woman to churn up a celebratory meal, and the fun these women had, gossiping, cracking jokes, sharing secrets and bonding while working together made it worth their while.
This afternoon, I brought home a few plant cuttings from a friendly neighbour and decided to get my children to help me weed the pots in the balcony and plant each one of them.
As we planted them, we said, "Dear God please bless this plant. Let it grow to be healthy and strong." (That's also because I don't trust my 'green' thumb... They would need divine grace to survive...)
Soon we were done and 8 freshly planted saplings were ready to brave it out on their own.
As we washed our hands and feet clean, Abhir, my six year old asked me, "Mama, does God understand all languages? Even English?"