The “Pink City” is the name given the magical city of Jaipur, India. Anyone who has been lucky enough to travel to Jaipur can attest, the city truly glows shades of pink. But, why pink? In 1876, the Prince of Wales and Queen Victoria were to be visiting India on a tour. In India, pink denotes the color of hospitality so, the Maharaja Ram Singh of Jaipur painted the whole city pink to welcome his guests. The pink still stands and Jaipur residents, by law, are asked to maintain the pink color of their residences.
To help everyone at Tea “go there,” we make a yearly contribution to each employee for international travel and exploration. Upon their return, our Tea travelers write a blog post to share their adventures with all of us (and the world)! We’ve been waiting for this post from Tori, one of our graphic designers, from the moment we heard this trip was booked!
After realizing we had caught a serious case of wanderlust, my friend Ganesha and I decided we had to go explore somewhere new. Since we both share a love of adventure and photography, we decided Iceland was the place for us and spontaneously booked our flight!
Saying the words, Ghee Happy, makes us happy. We assume the same goes for anyone who stumbles upon Sanjay Patel, illustrator extraordinaire and the owner of the Ghee Happy brand. Patel has produced four books under Ghee Happy, and his day job? He also happens to be an animator and story board artist for Pixar Animation Studios! When we were in India, we came across Patel’s illustrations and immediately bought his incredible book, The Little Book of Hindu Deities on Amazon. We were drawn to the colorful animations and sweet (informative) stories behind the Hindu myths. The book is amusing to children and adults alike; our copy director brought the book home to her 4-year-old and it has quickly become a favorite. Read on to learn about all of the animals, gods and goddesses, monsters, demons, noble warriors and divine divas, and don’t forget about Ganesha the elephant!
Bonding with baby during storytime can be one of the most beneficial bonds at this stage in their life. Reading books to your infant helps them identify the rhythm and cadence of your voice and helps with early brain development. We’ve rounded up a few of our favorites to add to your littlest citizen’s collection!
This season as we celebrate the color and culture of India, we also want to give back and make a difference in the lives of some of the children who live there.
Recently, two Tea employees traveled to Jaipur to meet the staff of Gram Bharati Samiti, or the Society for Rural Development. This non-profit organization partners with rural villages in the state of Rajasthan to educate women and girls about their right to information, education and healthcare.
They also restore ancient stepwells so more villages have access to clean and safe drinking water. And they teach girls a craft like how to weave carpets and dhurrie rugs, to embroider saris and sew cholis (the blouses worn beneath saris). When young girls have the ability to earn their own money, they are free from the threat of child marriage and have more opportunity for education and independence.
We recently visited three of the 17 villages that Gram Bharati Samiti works with, and met many of the young girls who have been educated and empowered. (Read more about the girls we met here and here.)
We have been so inspired by the work of this non-profit organization, we asked The Global Fund for Children if all the money donated through our site could go directly to Gram Bharati Samiti.
So this spring, when you donate on a Global Giving Thursday or any day of the month, your funds will be helping Rekha, Buja, Prinka and other girls like them in rural villages near Jaipur.
The unique and rich music of India spans many genres from fusion to classical with a varied range of instruments. The striking sounds of the sitar have influenced many musicians – even all the way into popular Western music rock & roll music. Check out our playlist to see why the Beatles and The Rolling Stones were so drawn to the mystical sounds of the sitar. Don’t forget to listen to “The Sun Won’t Set” by Norah Jones and Anoushka Shankar – sitar virtuoso Ravi Shankar’s daughters.
The word chutney derives from the Sanskrit word caṭnī, meaning ‘to lick’. Associated with South Asian cuisine, these “condiments” vary greatly in flavor. Some chutney’s are fruit based while others are vegetable based. Some are chunky and some are smooth. The one thing in common with all chutneys? They’re all originally made by grinding fresh ingredients together. Popular chutneys, just as other Indian foods, vary from region to region as so much depends on the local ingredients. Chutneys are a vital combination to most Indian dishes and you’ll find they always pair well with Indian breads like chapati, naan, papadum, paratha and more!