Mama Lisa's World
International Music & Culture
A place for poems, songs, rhymes and traditions from around the world for both kids and grown-ups to enjoy!
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Articles about 'Holidays Around the World'
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This seasonal recipe for Takikomi Gohan (mixed rice) was sent by Ayako Egawa in Japan.  Takikomi Gohan is made with rice and seasonal ingredients and is made to celebrate the changing season. Here’s Ayako’s note on the dish, along with her recipe… "Lisa is very curious about our food in Japan. So I’d like to...
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In the Spring, people in Japan traditionally view the cherry blossoms and picnic under the trees.  This is called Hanami.  When people view the blossoms by night, it’s called Yozakura.  At this time of year it can be cool at night so some people bring blankets, warm saki and body warmers.  Sadao sent me the...
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It’s hanami time in Japan, when people view the cherry blossoms and picnic below their beautiful blooms. The photo above was sent by Ayako Egawa.  Ayako wrote, "I took a pic of white sakura (cherry trees) and pink sakura… that’s a really nice combination. White sakura is called ‘ooshimazakura’ and pink sakura is called ’someiyohino’." Thanks for...
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I recently posted a song about Mt. Fuji and a haiku poem about a snail climbing Mt. Fuji. While I was working on them, I came across mention of there being a tradition in Japan of people wanting to climb Mt. Fuji during their lifetime.  I asked Sadao Mazuka who’s from Japan about this tradition....
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Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Check out the song "I am the Wee Falorie Man" (with a recording) to get you in the mood… Today, I’m going to make a Guinness Stew since I had the traditional Corned Beef and Cabbage yesterday at my Mom’s house. You can check out some Irish recipes, songs and poems here. I’ll leave...
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Since Valentine’s Day is around the corner, I wanted to post this little love poem called "A Scrawl" by James Whitcomb Riley.  You can listen to a recording of it below and read along with the poem. MP3 Recording of A Scrawl A Scrawl By James Whitcomb Riley   I want to sing something–...
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Emanuela wrote from Italy about St. Nicholas of Bari… "We celebrate St. Nicholas of Bari on December 6th. Our St. Nicholas is the Nicholas who is celebrated in northern Europe. St. Nicholas was the Bishop of Myra (now part of Turkey), but now his body is in Bari, Italy. European immigrants brought this character to America....
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In parts of Italy, La Befana is the one who gives gifts to children instead of Santa Claus.  She does this on the night of the Epiphany on January 5th.  That’s when the 3 Wise Men are said to have given their gifts to Jesus.   La Befana goes around leaving presents for children, in imitation...
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"’Ainsi périssent les ennemis de la République!’ (Thus perish the enemies of the Republic), referring to how fictional character Mère Royaume poured boiling hot vegetable soup on soldiers climbing up the city walls of Geneva in a surprise attack on December 11-12, 1602. One of the ways the Genevois celebrate this defeat is by eating...
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Happy St. Nicolas’ Day! Here’s a link to info about the legend of St. Nick. Here’s a link to a Dutch St. Nick song with a recording:
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Check out Mama Lisa’s World’s New Christmas Carol App for $1.99! Featuring… -75 Beloved Carols from Around the World. -Each carol includes lyrics in the original language, with an English translation. -Each includes recordings, some by professional musicians, but many by ordinary people who have contributed them to us, to help preserve...
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I saw this pretty autumn tree craft at our local library’s children’s room.  Here’s how you make it… Supplies:  Medicine Dropper, Glossy Photo Paper, Watercolor Paint, Straw, Brown Construction Paper (for tree trunk). Drip watercolor paint onto the top half of the paper using the medicine dropper.  Use autumnal colors like yellow, orange, green and red.  Take...
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Saint Cecilia’s Day is on November 22nd.  St. Cecilia is very popular in Italy because Cecilia is the patron saint of music, musicians and singers.  Pettole of St. Cecelia are made on this day.  Pettole come from southern Italy in the municipality of Ariano Irpino (Avellino) near Naples.  Pettole are similar to zeppoles.  They’re made...
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Below is an interesting documentary about the Mexican Day of the Dead filmed in 1957. This quote from the video gives an idea of the feeling behind the Day of the Dead: "Tears are shed for the living. We never shed tears for the dead. We must be very careful that no tears drop on this day...
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On All Saints’ Day, Agnieszka Magnucka, who’s from Poland, wrote: "Light a candle for those who you love but who’ve passed away." ***** That started a correspondence between us about All Saints’ Day and All Souls’ Day in Poland… Lisa: Do you celebrate All Souls’ Day in Poland? Agnieszka: Yes, Lisa (November 1st is All Saints’ Day, November 2nd...
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Emanuela Marsura wrote about Italian traditions on All Saints’ Day and the Day of the Dead (festa Santi e Morti) that take place in Italy on November 1st and 2nd.  Here’s what she wrote: On All Saints’ Day (November 1st), we go to the Saints’ Mass in the morning. In the afternoon, we have a celebration...
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Mummy Franks are like Piggies in the Blanket except they look like little mummies.   All you need to make them is one package of your favorite frankfurters and one roll of Pillsbury Crescents (normally used to make croissants). Recipe for Mummy Frankfurters 1 Package Frankfurters 1 Package Pillbury Crescents Preheat oven to 375 F.  1....
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My daughter made these graveyard cupcakes for Halloween.  We used the packaged cupcake mix and premade icing because we were pressed for time.  Note: You can use the same idea with a sheet cake if you prefer. Recipe for Graveyard Cupcakes Chocolate Cupcake Mix (plus eggs, vegetable oil and water to make the mix) ...
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Here’s how to make spider and spider web cupcakes.  It’s easy! 1. Make cupcakes as you normally would and let them cool.  Then put white icing on them. 2. Free form decorate them using a toothpick and black writing gel making spiders and webs.  You can see designs in the photos below. It’s easy! Enjoy! Mama Lisa
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This past weekend we made a fun dessert called "Worms in Dirt".  It’s easy to make for Halloween or Earth Day. Here’s how… Recipe for Worms in Dirt 2 Packages of Instant Chocolate Pudding (our pudding recipe called for 4 cups of Milk) Gummy Worms Crumbled...

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