What’s your definition of family? Although the dictionary has different definitions of family, the meaning of the word is special to the individual. The Orchard Families Project was designed as a way to build connections and celebrate the families we have in our Orchard community. The project is very simple, what does family mean to you? We asked some families to answer very simple and fun questions that explain what makes their family unique. We hope you will take the time to get to learn more about the families that make up our community. After all, we are all a part of the Orchard family!
THE MANTRAVADI FAMILY
The Mantravadi family consists of Manasa, Avinash, Aarya, Adhya, and Medha. This is their second year as an Orchard family. When asked what family means to them, they shared a concept that was given by a teacher who educates families. The teacher related family to Redwood trees and the concept has stuck with them. “The California Redwoods are the tallest trees in the world, and they grow to such heights because their roots grow widely to interconnect with the roots of its neighboring trees. This provides them with incredible strength and makes them capable of withstanding even the strongest of winds without falling over.” Therefore, for the Mantravadi family, “Family is made from meaningful interconnections between people that nourish individual growth, leading to incredible strength of the entire unit, even in the face of obstacles. This can come from direct relatives, classmates, colleagues and neighbors. We have been blessed to be surrounded by supportive relationships such as these over the years.”
The Mantravadi family traditions include family game nights and after-dinner dance parties. They enjoy spending time together, having fun, and being silly. These are at the core of most of their traditions. One family tradition they have is rooted in genuine love of exploration and appreciation for different cultures. At least once per year, the Mantravadi family explores a new place and immerses themselves in the experience to gain a full appreciation of the world around them. Their favorite holiday is Halloween, as they love working together as a team to find the perfect family costume. Their favorite Indian tradition is Raksha Bandhan. This tradition celebrates the bond between a sister and brother. While they say their kids love each other, “they may also love the exchange of sweets and gifts during the tradition just as much!”
The Mantravadi favorite family memories include taking their first family hike together in Arizona, their first family ride by the canal and cultural trail downtown (without training wheels!), and the first (of many) spontaneous, self-directed and self-produced puppet/magid/dance shows. These are put on by Adhya, Aarya, and Medha.
What makes the Mantravadi family the Mantravadi family is, “The desire to always maintain a positive outlook and find the humor in any situation, no matter how challenging.” They believe “Family provides us with unwavering confidence in truly being ourselves and always feeling supported and accepted as we are by each other.”