Monday, April 30, 2007

Have you ever thought of writing those lovely 'Thank You' notes? It almost happens that as children grow up, they apt to forget the small beginnings that led them to climb ladders of success. I have seen children remember their teachers and the memories are very live but very few reciprocate their gratitude and revive the broken links with them.

Recently, an ex student visited the library and she was too happy to talk to the present students. She explained the importance of forming Reading habits and her journey from Swagat Library to what she has achieved today. She had attended my library for almost 4 years. Literally reading was geek for her but the guidance for reading from Swagat, helped her to pick up the right books. Step-to-step reading, from beginners stories, fairy tales to classics and later fiction reading made a big difference in her life and career as well. She thanked me for being her mentor and my heart is filled with joy.

Saying or Writing thank-you notes is a habit, and habits are not formed out of the blue. In school, we are taught to say 'Please, sorry and Thank You' but mostly, children do not adhere to the rules of gratitude. The habit sometimes is influenced by teachers and parents who guide the children. However, many children come out with a unique card - they draw me with specks and say Thank You while some draw and color a card with wishes. Sometimes gifts are not remembered but thoughtfully spoken or written words of gratitude and courteous note makes a big difference.

I remember visiting my school Library (Mt. Carmel school) a year ago and met the Library Sister. Though I met her for the first time, she was so happy to see an ex student of the school running a children's Library and she was proud of it and happily showed me the new arrival books. I can remember all time I spent there and thank my teachers for such wonderful books. As such, 18th April was marked for "Thanking school Librarian" and you will find e-cards here on 123greetings to thank your Librarian for encouraging you to read. You can even 'Thank' your mom or teacher (even!) for encouraging you to read - all that is good and nice. Why, you can even thank Google to show you such beautiful sites you surf and read. Enjoy!

- ilaxi

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Chaitra month, Neem & Palm treeThe first of April, some do say,

Is set apart for All Fool's day;
But why the people call it so
Nor I, nor they themselves, do know.
But on this day are people sent
On purpose for pure merriment.

Americans do their fooling on 1st April because the early Scotch, English and French settlers brought the custom with them. The occassion provides pranksters of every description an opportunity to play a wide variety of jokes upon their friends and neighbors.

This year April 1st is Palm Sunday too. Palm tree is sacred since branches of palm tree were significant at the time of birth of Jesus. The bible scriptures mention Palm as characteristics of Palestine - the land of palms. The people of Jerusalem took the Palm branches and greeted Jesus when he entered Jerusalem and said, "Hosanna: Blessed is the King of Israel that cometh in the name of the Lord" (Matthew 21:8; John 12:13). Here are Annie's Pages if you like to know more on this. Christmas pages on kidsfreesouls are here with some info too.

As such, we have the month of Chaitra (as per gujarati calendar) and this month, people drink the juice made of the leaves of bitter Neem tree. It is believed that if this juice is taken, a person will not fall sick for the whole year as it is very good for health. We also eat the flower of Neem tree with sugar if neem juice is too bitter to drink. Here is the Trees Page on Neem and Palm trees.

- ilaxi