Each Breath A Smile

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Author: Sister Thuc Nghiem
Illustrations by: Nguyen Thi Hop
Softcover ~ 32 pages

Each Breath a Smile
 introduces children to mindful breathing. Through beautiful color illustrations, children learn to connect with their breathing to help them experience calmness and enjoy a deeper relationship with their friends and family. Illustrations of trees, frogs, crickets, and birds remind them of the many simple joys available in the world around them.

"Breathing in, I see myself as a mountain. Breathing out, I feel solid. Mountain, sold. / Breathing in, I see myself as space. Breathing out, I feel free. Space, free." 

Although this book introduces children to mindful breathing and awareness, it steers clear of any explicit religious teachings. The text uses simple, repetitive phrases to create a sense of calm, and the pictures are in soothing pastel colors. Reading the book is a meditation in itself and can serve as a springboard for introducing children to spiritual contemplation of any type.

About the Author: Sister Thuc Nghiem (Susan Swan), a grandmother and former teacher, is a nun in the tradition of Thich Nhat Hanh. She lives and works at Green Mountain Dharma Center in Vermont; this is her first book.