News from Root & Seed HQ!

This bonus episode includes a special announcement from Root & Seed, including the launch of physical conversation cards on Kickstarter on Tuesday, February 28th at 6:00AM PST/9:00AM EST.


Check out our Kickstarter Campaign Page for launch day discounts, visit our Conversation Cards page for more details, and check out our product video on YouTube.


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Episode Transcript



Hey there, Root & Seed community! Coming on here to tell you about a special announcement and offer for our closest supporters.

If you've been an avid follower of this podcast, you know that we ask each of our guests a special question at the end of each of their episodes. We select a question from our newly created conversation card game, a series of questions across four categories: food, traditions, celebrations, and family stories - designed to help families capture, collect, and document their precious stories for safekeeping for generations to come. We are excited to let you know that you too can get your hands on your own Root & Seed Conversation Card deck.

We are launching this gorgeous set of cards in a durable standup box with 68 of the most popular questions from our web app. We've worked with journalists and cognitive linguists to create the prompts plus the dig-deeper questions in our secure web app so that you will never have a lull and conversation. The best part is that you can record the audio and store it in your own private family library, kind of like a podcast series of your own.

Check this episode's notes for a link to sign up. And because we love our podcast listeners, we are opening the campaign a day early for you and for our VIPs. So mark your calendars for Tuesday, February 28th at 6:00 am PST, and 9:00 am EST.


Now if we got you curious about the idea of this, what better way for you to hear the game in action than with an exchange between us asking questions directly of our guests?


Here we go. First off, Lucky Budd. Lucky is a professional historian, documentarian, and tells stories for a living. In season four, episode two we wanted to hear the personal side of Lucky’s stories, so we asked him: What tradition do you want your family to keep forever?



We don't particularly practice. We realized when we got together and started having kids that we could make our own traditions.


So what means something to us is connecting, as I said, with the people who came before us. So one of the prized possessions that my great grandparents brought over from the old country, one of the only things that survived, was a set of candlesticks. I have those candlesticks, and when Jesse's grandma died she was given candlesticks.

So on Friday nights, we light the candles and we light the candles because it's something that's been happening in both of our families for generations and generations and our kids understand that. So we're not doing it in praised God kind of way, but we're doing it in more of like a cultural-let's-be-respectful kind of way.



Season three, episode seven. Guests, Serena Anthony is a proud East and West Indian and has dug her West Indian heritage as an adult. Loudly and proud. Food is such a huge part of both sides of her identity. So we asked her: Who are some of the best chefs in your family?



On my grandmother's side, she too was a phenomenal West Indian cook. She was known for her cooking. It's probably where my mother had got her touches from.

My grandmother used to make soup, a west Indian soup, and it was filled with very traditional Caribbean eats, which were ground provisions… so green bananas, cassava, um, potatoes dumplings, um, and then a meat of your choice. So sometimes she would do beef. Sometimes she would do chicken and she would make a massive pot of soup. And let everyone know that she was making it, and the entire family (my mom had four siblings) would race over for the soup that my grandmother was making.



Going from meal staples to sweet treats, season three, episode four, guest Asha Frost embellishes on the question: Are there any dishes that we don't have anymore but you miss?



I think it, I think for me, it's like, I would love to reclaim cooking some traditional foods. I think that's like a really big thing for me, like even cooking, like dear stew, like venison stew… or even this is like, it's so ridiculous, but Bannock is like one of my favorite things to eat.


It's like, so treat-like, but it really is one of my favorite things to eat. My mom makes the best Bannock. Um, but she rarely made it for us growing up, cuz it wasn't good for us. Right. So I would love to reclaim making Bannock.



If that doesn't make you want to recreate your family recipes, I'm not sure what will. In season four, episode four, singer and songwriter Marel Alemany makes you want to move to a beat in every part of his interview. We decided to put him on the spot, and knowing that he has a large family, we asked him: What game, hobby or sport brings out your family's competitive spirit?



Well I have a really high competitive spirit that I've tried to tame throughout the years. But I found an adoptive family in my wife's family, because it's a huge family compared to mine.


And one of the reasons I fell in love with her is we used to gather every Holy Week. So we get like four or five weeks vacation for Easter in the Dominican Republic to do this big treasure hunt in a place in the country surrounded by nature… and the clues of these treasure hunts all related to trees and fruits, and the flora and the fauna of the place, and it was really, really competitive. We divided into two groups and we had to rush and so all these accidents happen and then it's like a really exhausting challenge, but it's also a really great bonding experience for the family.


We laugh, we cry. Then finally, when we find the treasure, we get bragging rights over the rest of the members of the family for a year.



Interviewing our next guest was like going to a place of worship and hearing a sermon from a leader whose words penetrate and inspire. Season three, episode three. Guest Abdul-Rehman Malik is a lecturer at Yale and a podcast hosts himself shining a light on stories across the Muslim diaspora. His answer to: What tradition do you wish to reclaim? let us hear the more playful, heart-led side of Abdul-Rehman.



Dance. Would've been very much part of our Punjabi traditions, Bangarra in particular, you know. And I feel like I missed out on that growing up, until much later (until I think later into the nineties, early two thousands), we started getting married and then the nights, the nights became a little bit more alive and activated. And I think we became more, a little bit more comfortable in our own skin. It took a while…


I would definitely say that if it was a tradition I wanted to reclaim it would be the tradition of social dance, you know of. And I love watching it on YouTube. I love watching all the younger artists, right. So I feel like as a, as a Punjabi dad, it's kind of in me because I hear that music and it's like the light goes on, and it's like, get all ready for it.



Every single one of these answers demonstrates the individuality of families and what makes each of us special, unique, and who we are from stories to memories to recipes.


There's so much to be captured and we are so excited to be part of each family that chooses to use our tools. So sign up now with a link in the episode notes. We can't wait to hear what you think of our new Conversation Cards launching on February 28th on Kickstarter.


Bye for now.

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