In this interview, Markus and Gely of Mirabai Ceiba share their experiences recording their magical children’s album Ojos Como Estrellas: Eyes like Stars, as well as the many lessons they learned about consciously and lovingly connecting with their two daughters. We hope you enjoy their wise and heartfelt words.
Gely: This album has been in our womb for some years now because we’ve had such a beautiful journey with our daughters, with the home school experience, to be so close to them and testify their development and their growth from such a close position has brought a lot of blessings and inspiration.
Based on these experiences, a lot of these songs were born. One of them was written to greet the day, to welcome the day, and then there’s another to say goodbye to the sun, and relate to life through music.
The kids have this world of theirs. For instance, this song that we sang that we wrote for greeting the day, we went for a period of time out with the guitar, the little guitar that we have, through the garden, singing this song to everything and saying, “Good morning ants. Good morning spiders. Good morning leaves.”
This album has been this journey, to go back to looking at these details of life with these eyes. It’s amazing how children bring us back to the present every moment. Because as adults, we have so many thoughts – so many thoughts about the future, the past, plans, logistics, and so on, but the kids are so much just with this little flower. And often times, we can’t even listen to them because we’re so busy.
This album has inspired us to allow ourselves to dive into these fantasy worlds, and it’s been a wonderful journey.
The journey of this music with our children has also been interesting because we wrote some of the songs based on experiences we’ve had with them or inspirations that they give us through their nature. Also, some of the songs are musicalized poems from our Waldorf curriculum, because in the Waldorf home school, you have to teach a lot of poems.
My kids have enjoyed learning poems, but sometimes not so much, and sometimes they are really deep and beautiful poems. So, we’ve put these poems into songs so that, instead of having the kids memorize a poem, we just sing it randomly. On a river trip, we were singing a lot of those poems and songs, and then we were rowing in the boat, and it makes it super fun.
A lot of the Waldorf curriculum connects very much with nature, so it was perfect. You are out there singing to the rainbows and the raindrops or the river or whatever, and then we create this connection with nature and with each other.
Also, when we travel with our kids, we have this repertoire. It’s fun because it’s something that bonds us, even if we are out in the world and feeling lonely or community-less, but then we have this very strong community amongst ourselves and these songs that we know that came from experiences.
We have felt inspired to share this experience that we have had with our children with song and nature and home school and learning. We tried to put some of this spirit of this into the CD, into the songs, and also into the booklet with all the text translated in English and Spanish, so that people can get the most of out it, and maybe even learn the songs, learn them in Spanish too for the people who don’t speak Spanish.
I find it’s very enriching, even for our kids, when we listen to children’s albums in other languages. It’s very fun to just look at the lyrics, even if you don’t understand a thing, to connect with that, to enrich the world of the children, and to allow parents and children have this little exploration together.
We feel very blessed that we have had so much time with our kids, but we know that there are many parents and children out there that don’t have so much time with each other – kids who go to school and parents who work until late. So, we’re hoping that this album can be a tool for connection. We can play it in the car. They can chant the songs together aloud, just opening this possibility of bonding.
So, there’s this story I want to share with you that I found really inspiring. There’s an African tribe who gives names to their children the day the mom has the thought to conceive. The day the mom has the thought to conceive, she creates a song for this being and calls it with a song and sings it until she finally gets pregnant and then teaches it to the community.
They sing it while the baby is growing in the womb, then the baby is born, and that’s the first thing they sing, this baby’s song. Then, as this child grows up, if it does something wrong, instead of punishing this child, they take it in the middle of the tribe. They put it in the middle, and they sing its song to remind him or her of who he or she is. I think that’s really beautiful.
I wanted to tell you this story because I would love to share with our album, and the songs we wrote for our kids, that children really want to be loved. Of course we love them, but we also have to do some work to find out when and how they really feel loved. We love them, but that doesn’t mean they feel loved. To do that, we need to really meet them in their nature, in their being, where they are. And one way to do this is to write a song or a poem for them on their birthday.
Markus: What I wanted to share from my own experience in creating this record with our children that I definitely learned that it’s very important to approach your children and not take it for granted that they are there. There is this very strong connection that you will have automatically with your children because you are the father or the mother, and you take this very much for granted, but this relationship needs time and space to be nourished, and to also really experience this time with your children in a profound way, because there is so much to learn for us as adults as well.
Many times we think we have to educate the children, and we have to give them guidance, but it’s also a wonderful thing to really tune into the souls of your children and see “What are they bringing to my life? What is the gift they bring to this relationship?”
This has been a wonderful experience for me through the homeschool process because Gely started to say, “Ok, I’ll teach them at home.” It’s a very creative process with life education. It’s a Waldorf curriculum, and it includes a lot of painting, arts, and stories. What I’ve learned through this is that this is such a precious time to see the flowers of your children really grow and blossom. It’s such an enrichment for your own life, if you find the space to open this relationship.
We are constantly on the get go — obviously, as a family father, as a family mother, two children. You have to make income. You have to move your projects forward. You have a lot of your own dreams you want to fulfill. It keeps you constantly on the run, busy, and having so much to do always. There is no time in the day. But, I think it’s very crucial, and I’m grateful, that I could take this out from this recording process or from this creating process, that it’s important to really have time with your children because the relationship will be so much more harmonious, and the family dynamic can be so much more blissful for everyone.
I was very happy to be with them in the recording studio and record with them. It’s so sweet to see them — how they approach a recording process, for instance.
I’m very happy with our art design for the CD, especially in times of digital download, Spotify, and Apple Music. I think it’s great to have something beautiful in your hands. We worked with Daniella Drescher from Germany. She is a well-known children’s book author and illustrator, and we are her fans. Our family has dove deep into her books, so we approached her for this record. I wrote her an email, and I was happy she responded so positively to it and that she painted this little fairy on our book, on our artwork.
I hope that this CD, this album, can be an invitation for children and parents to come together. Actually, it’s a children’s CD, but I think it’s more for adults, to open up to this magical world again, which we have sometimes forgotten in our busyness. I hope you enjoy it.
With hearts full of gratitude to their beloved children, Mirabai Ceiba delights with a tapestry of song that awakens innocence and the deep spirit of connection in listeners of all ages. Ojos Como Estrellas: Eyes Like Stars is born from the blessed experience of observing the growth of the young. Through joyful melodies and gentle lullabies, we are invited to journey through the magical world of childhood. Exquisitely composed and orchestrated, this album is sure to bring new youth to even the most mature of hearts. Experience it for yourself here!