Anyone remember the children’s artist named Raffi? I was first introduced to him when I was fresh out of college and eagerly putting my knowledge into action as an in-home support person providing early intervention services for kiddos with special needs. The kiddos I worked with loved music. It was soothing to them and his bright and airy tunes were some of their favorites. And they stuck with me too… long after I was married and had children of my own. I retreated to his collection as a parent to bring sunshine into our days and a collective positive energy that radiated from his simple songs. Raffi was such an endearing part of our babes early years and he was a steadfast companion to my husband and I during our “new” parenting struggles and triumphs.
Years had gone by though and I hadn’t given his music another thought…. you see, our kids had outgrown it and it had been lying dormant and tucked (not so carefully) away in the side of my mini-van door, for more years than I care to count. But, recently, on the long drive home from Pittsburgh, the kids had finished all of their “work” and were getting a bit rammy. Since technology was off limits, they were getting rowdier as each mile passed. Then, my ingenious husband had the grand idea to resurrect this old soul via a CD hanging on for dear life on the side of the interior door. I was skeptical, but open to being amused, so he proceeded to load it and blare it nevertheless!
With the first note of “Five little Ducks” the kids were in shock, sporting glaring eyes and appalled grimaces and they did not hold back their vehement protesting. Yet, just a few verses in and everyone was singing. Everyone!! What’s more, we didn’t sing just that one song but most of selections on that antiquated and well- loved CD. We belted along for miles through the twists and turns of Amish country. What a special moment in time! Truly unexpected and oh so beautiful. For just a moment we were transported back in time…. when life was a bit simpler (well actually A LOT simpler- we just didn’t know it at the time). So much joy, connection and pure adoration emanated from our mini-van that day. I wish I could have captured it and bottled it up.
If you have very young children and you haven’t discovered the wonder of this beautiful soul, you must. Raffi is the best. However; if he too is in your parenting rear view mirror, I hope his melodies evoke the happiest of memories for you as they do for us.
Here are my BIG FIVE all time Raffi favorites if you’re interested….Mr. Sun, Apples & Bananas, Shake My Sillies Out, Robin in the Rain & Down by the Bay.
With Big Much Love,