Passport to Culture: An At-Home Travel Series
Raising Multiracial Children: Feeling Whole in Mixed Identity
I started De Su Mama out of a desire to ground my then 1 year old daughter in an identity that created wholeness. As a bicultural Latina, with divorced parents no less, I knew what it felt like to grow up feeling fragmented. Long before my children were born, I wanted so much more for them. I did my best at marrying a man of stability (and in my opinion, marrying D was the smartest thing I’ve ever done). As it turns out, I fell madly in love with a black man and had his beautiful mixed babies.
Raising multiracial children is the catapult of everything I do as a parent. From my values to opinions, it all has to do with creating a space of fullness in identity and solidarity in values – as a family, as an individual and as global citizens.
I want to raise my kids to know that, while they’re mixed, the world is way bigger than Latino and Black cultures. They can be, and should stand together with, whomever they wish.
Passport to Culture: An At-Home Travel Series
This project has been a year in the making and I cannot be more pleased to see it finally coming together. With the help of my party-mastermind sister, my aim is teach the kids about the traditions and cultures of foreign countries; to showcase the beauty of our differences, while reminding us that we’re all so much the same.
Passport to Culture is an at-home travel series that celebrates multiculturalism in parenting by the examination of food culture, cultural traditions and country facts through good ol’ fashioned dress-up and party! It’s fun, kid-friendly and supports inspired travel… even if at-home.
Cultural Activities for Kids
The first Passport to Culture Party was done this month last year, in celebration of Ireland and St. Patrick’s Day. I then followed the same agenda when celebrating Chinese New Year a few months back. My persistence inspired my sister, who helped us put together two more out of this world culture parties coming very soon. (If you follow me on Instagram, you already got a peak!)
Each Passport to Culture Party post will consist of various elements of the following from the featured country: food culture, understanding important symbols and traditions, crafts and DIY, language and learning simple words/phrases, what a kids’ life might be like in that country.
Also, each post will end with a stamp in the Passport to Culture. Alina is able to color the national flag and narrate what was her favorite thing she learned. In addition to having these posts to look back on, I can assure you that Alina remembers and is influenced by each country we learn about. She can’t wait for me to take her to Paris, where “the kids try any food at least once”. She knows the name of our favorite blogger in Morocco who sent us spices all the way from Marrakesh and wonders if her boys sit on the ground to eat. She loves her Good Luck Drums and had so much fun making Irish Soda Bread. Made at home, these experiences are real for her nonetheless.
Culture parties are more than just fun, they really do impact my little girl’s developing understanding of our world… and, thus, her identity. I’m happy she is learning that, while she might be the only brown girl in her preschool class, the world is so much bigger.
Travel Along With Us?
Below you will find a free printable for your own Passport to Culture cover (don’t forget to resize accordingly!). If there’s enough interest, I’ll do a tutorial on making your passport. They’re pretty easy to make though. At the end of each country post, you’ll also find a passport stamp printable for that country (resize that to your needs, too!). I’ll link all the resources we used to teach the kids about that particular country, including children’s books, resource sites and products. In some cases, I’ll do additional posts on recipes or crafts that helped us embrace multiculturalism. My hope is that these posts can be of a resource to those doing similar projects.
It Starts At Home
I want to show my kids the world while their ability to adsorb language is keen and their resistance to newness low. Everyday I think about selling everything, going rouge and off the grid to live a life of nomadic travel that will really change the identities of my kids. If Daddy D weren’t so stable (bless his wonderful heart), we would be gone right now….
International travel is in my babies’ futures, that I know for sure, but this make-shift passport is their first. And I’m proud of that. We can travel the world, but if lessons on acceptance and celebrations of multiculturalism is not done in the home, the expensive travels at grandeur resorts make little impact to the type of people I hope to raise.