I recently had an opportunity to photograph a very special family celebration, a Pasni or a Nepali Rice Feeding Ceremony. Many of you know that our son was born in Nepal. I have a great affection for Nepal and its people. It is a beautiful country and my husband and I found the people to be gentle and kind during our time there. But that's another story for another time.
Perhaps you don't know a lot, or anything, about this Nepali celebration. Because our son was almost 4 years old when we brought him home from Nepal, admittedly I had never heard of a Pasni celebration. Well, come along with me as I share what I learned and the joy that I witnessed.
Pasni is when a Nepali child is fed his or her first bite of food other than milk, which is rice. This celebration is held at five months old for daughters and six months old for sons. Relatives and friends are invited to witness and to celebrate with the parents. This particular Pasni celebration was unique in that three sets of parents, all with infant sons, cousins to one another, were celebrating their first bite of rice on the same day! A bit hectic, for sure, but also beautiful to witness. Traditionally, it is the baby's mother who feeds their child their first bite of rice. But because of the unique circumstances, the three mothers decided to give the honor to the babies' grandparents.
The babies were dressed in beautiful outfits made of red velvet and silk and embroidered with silver and gold thread. After the grandparents fed their grandsons their first bite of rice, they placed a tika, a mixture of red powder and rice, on each baby's forehead. This is a blessing for the baby.
Afterward, other family members including aunts and cousins were invited to feed the babies.
Gifts of gold bracelets and money envelopes for the children were also given by grandparents and aunts as a token of love, luck, and prosperity.
It was truly beautiful to watch the matriarch of the family as she blessed all of her grandchildren by placing a tika on their foreheads and bowing to their feet offering an additional good omen and as a sign of respect and honor.
After the rice feeding ceremony concluded, like all family reunions, there was a lot of great food to be eaten,
tired babies to care for,
and lots of love and laughter!
Thank you to my friends Jyotsana and Adam, and to all of the new friends that I made that day, for inviting me to be a part of your joyful Pasni celebration!
To see more images from this celebration, please visit my website www.katebuckleyphotography.com. There you will also find everything you need to know to book your session to capture special moments from your family celebrations or a day-in-the-life session.