As our families grow we try and find ways to make sure our children stay connected to their roots. We draw from our own childhood experiences and build new traditions with our partners, children and the friends we make along the way. In our Then and Now series we talk to moms and dads about how they channel these rich customs, that have been passed down through the generations, in their parenting today.We're so excited to introduce you to Michelle Ranavat, the founder of Ranavat Botanics. Ranavat has quickly developed a cult following not only due to the incredible products but thanks to the the authenticity of Michelle. You can learn more about the products and #claimyourcrown on the Website or on Instagram.
Tell us a little about yourself.
I grew up in a suburb of Milwaukee, Wisconsin – my parents came from India in the 70s. Growing up in a small town in Wisconsin, being Indian was considered "different." These days high school kids probably compare their organic chai recipes, but the 80's in Wisconsin were a completely different story. I pretty much spent my youth living 2 lives: at school I was eating peanut butter jelly sandwiches pretending they were samosas and at home I'd practice Indian dance for hours and learn every word to the newest Bollywood songs. I ended up spending so many years of my life not thinking my two worlds could ever coexist. Ranavat Botanics is my way of sharing who I am with the world. I am thankful to finally have the confidence to share my story: not only for myself, but for my sons and future generations too.
What was an important aspect of your culture your parents wanted to ensure they passed down through the generations?
As vegetarians, Indian food is such a great way to get all the nutrition we need and its something I grew up on. We love having Indian food for dinner a few times a week – not only because it tastes good and is part of our culture, but its incredibly balanced and healthy.
Are there any special pieces that have been passed down to you or you want to pass down?
My mom loves passing down her saris- and I truly love having them as part of my collection. While I may not always wear them, they are a time capsule that preserve a special event in our family but also the incredible local artistry and ancient techniques that we want to preserve.
What are your kids' favorite traditions?
My kids love cooking – we spend time together as a family baking desserts and cooking Indian food. At first it was a way for them to get interested in food, but eventually we all just fell in love with working together on a recipe.
What would they like to learn more about?
They love learning about different cultures! We took a trip to Italy this past summer and they are now so curious about other cultures, cuisines and traditions!