Happy birthday Batool

6 years ! Wow! I remember the time when Batool was born, her tiny preemie body and I used to pacify myself with thoughts that one day she will go to school and be big and healthy.


The dreams never end, but as she grows older the only dream I have for her is to be a great human being, who is just , patient and responsible. Just want her to be the best version of herself so that more than anyone else in the world she should be proud of herself.

As her mother all I can do is pray, and work towards this goal with every hopeful opportunity I get, and hustle.

I got her three presents this year, a book (Fun on the farm) , a puzzle ( All the 7 days) and a framed pic of me and her so every time she misses me she can simply see the pic.




Patience and tests of human beings require the most endurance. I have realised that a relationship with God is the only relationship that is needed to save any relationship on earth. Been a mother for six years and am proud to be one for the rest of my life to this amazing girl who has served as a means for me to get closer to Allah swt. And continues to do so with patience and inspiration.

An update in pictures

I have ideas, and think ‘oh I should blog about this!’ and then that mental note remains just that-a mental note.

Days have been flying by, and I have not changed, keep piling up more things to my schedule. It will take me a lot of time to truly make my mind stop rationalising a mad schedule for myself.

Anyway, I was taking pics, and while they may not be super interesting, it will make up a decent enough blog post for you guys. Some thing is better than nothing, isn’t it?

Took quite a few selfies;






Captured some moments of the daughter enjoying at the play area at school;


Got her a haircut on Guru Nanak Jayanti holiday on Wed! Oh how this one enjoys them….

Admired her sleeping…..It’s actually therapeutic, I always imagine what she must be dreaming about. When she was little she would smile in her sleep…


Admired the greenery at school…I spend so much time in my room with students counseling all day, I didn’t notice the lovely green plants all over the entrance. Had to take pics!

Did some colouring, trying to find things to relax me, getting out of the house is not a ready option. Plus my busy schedule doesn’t allow me to be able to do that. My HAP course ends in a week, I shall be having more time after that!



I had ordered The Story of Psychology, after being reommendation by Dr.Diana Monteiro (My teacher at HAP), waiting to finish off with the David Sedaris book before I indulge into this.


On Thursday Mir Imran the scientist visited the school to interact with our students. It was not my working day, and I just wanted to sleep in, had a few things on the agenda (I must admit), I somehow got myself to school and well, was inspired. The preceding day I had a ginormous mood swing, and desperately needed some inspiration. Was glad I attended the session, came to realise something crucial that has given me insight.


Decorated Batools school binder. Feel like a proud mom! Loved using all the glitter, was so fun!


Distributed inter-madrasa competition certificates to students on Sunday, below I give one to my daughter!


Hmm, that’s about it….Probably will post a rambling post soon…..

What have you been upto?


Eid in pics

I am not a poser, I don’t even enjoy buying clothes and all those girlie things. Normal people get excited to shop, I do too, but not for Indian wear. But this year I was up for some excitement, and I had made it a point to buy something in white. You may already know that I like white from my previous post.

And not only did I pick a beautiful dress in white, I also happened to love a white and pink one for Batool. 🙂

This year I called up me cousin, and asked her to come prepared to click a tonne of pictures, because for the firts time I was feeling like enjoying a little, and just obsessing over myself 😉




The Eid day was not elaborate, I had stayed over at my paternal aunts place as my cousin is in town from London. I stayed home the whole day and Batool visited her paternal grandparents for a while. It was a good day, just felt refreshed.

What did you do for Eid?

I just need quiet

Days of low motivation. Very subjective these things even for me. I may have 10 things to do, but they’re all more or less the same. Actually they are the same. I’ve been studying, running the Sunday school, working at a school, being a mommy, freelance writing/blogging for years now. The type of work hasn’t changed, but motivational levels fluctuate.

I have always tried to figure out what comes in the middle of my motivated zeal, because there are days when the plan is to wait till the daughter falls asleep so I can pursue all my studying and writing. And when she does, for some very embarrassing reason I don’t do anything. I end up wasting time on Youtube, or watching a movie, or just whiling away time on the internet.

But tonight I realized, that it’s because I function in quiet. Uninterrupted concentrated time. And hence I have decided to find myself more quiet time, and scenarios where I can work without being interrupted. Because studying requires concentration and while I have learned for the most part to be able to perform with auditory interference, I still need that solid 2 hours time to accomplish what needs to be accomplished.

As mommies we are forced to multi-task, and I have become really good at writing and listening, and typing and listening. I can engage in both activities with ease now. And sometimes I am amazed at how I am able to do that. The coffee helps in that, but when you have a toddler and an exam together, you will learn to manage.

So at-least the mystery is solved, studying can take place only in a peaceful quiet environment, doesn’t matter how exhausted I get I still have the enthusiasm to continue and finish off whatever assignment I have started., it’s because even my mind values peace and quiet. Will hit the library for this, at least on my Thursdays.

Do you have any studying tips mommies?

Low IQ days

So today was Thursday, the only day I have off. And well I had an agenda, a very productive one. Didn’t do squat!

Dropped the daughter at school, came back up, and thought I’d take a nap. Now I blame the Hyderabad world for this, nothing really start till 11AM here, so I thought I’ll put an alarm for 10 and will go about with my day. But guess what? I didn’t! I slept till 12, shamelessly got up, counted the number of hours left before I embark on picking the daughter up from school, called me friend, spoke to her, called another friend, spoke to her. And then I thought maybe a cup of coffee will raise some shame.

So I went into the kitchen, ate breakfast standing, didn’t bother with the coffee. I thought After such a long time I am having a full day to myself and I like that I am chilling. Caffeine plan cancelled.

Switched on the lappy, checked e-mail, and by that I mean just checked didn’t open any mail. Maybe ‘viewed’ would be the right adjective. And wasted hours on FB, doing nothing, just nothing, reading this and sharing that. All the while my Super Ego kept saying “Do something!!!”. But I didn’t bother.

I wasted so much time online, that I got exhausted, switched off the lappy and lazed around till 3PM. Went to pick up the daughter from school, and basically did not do anything productive the whole day. And you know what! I have made the conscious decision to just not do anything today. Cos I am human, and living in this typa stress is just not right.

The daughter is watching Peppa Pig, and now I sit blogging, cos let’s face it I have done everything else there is to do in order to waste time!

You know you’ve really been up to nothing, when you message a friend and say ‘I am bored’…The only productive thing maybe that happened today was a load of laundry, which BTW i just dumped into the machine and the machine worked its magic.

Lazy days are okay. Today reminded me that I truly didn’t have one Thursday off since I came back from Dubai in May. While I was browsing FB, my brain told me, ‘you’ve been upto some proper low IQ shit today’ and that was an insight for me!, I thought Hmm, let’s blog about that!

Batools Birthday Part 2 of 2

Continuing the Birthday fun from Part 1, I shall briefly review the presents she received on her birthday.

1.EduScience Globe. This was from me, I had a very clear idea of what I wanted to get for Batool. We’re been traveling quite a bit in the recent past, and I thought it’s the best time to introduce the world to her so she can understand countries and things like that. This is actually for 6yrs+ but I bought it anyway for the reason I just mentioned.

So, this is a huge globe, and is meant to introduce geographical content at the pace of the child. It has nothing labeled, there are erasable markers, and a list of contents and information for parents to refer. You can basically introduce whatever part of the world you want to the child, and move further as and when needed. This is the best feature about the globe, the child won’t feel overwhelmed by the many countries, continents, oceans etc. already marked on the globe. It has a loop on top, so that it can be suspended from the wall. Batool was excited about getting the “earth” for her birthday and she loved it.



2. Educa: The Human body puzzle. Batool knows the basic human body parts, we are familiar with the ‘head, shoulders, knees and toes’ rhymes. But this puzzle has three layers of human body parts; the upper body,  the muscles and the bones. It’s for4-7yr olds, In terms of relevance and understanding, Batool can only comprehend the bones and the upper body. We sat together and made the puzzle the first time. And they have separate puzzles for boy and girl in the top layer as you can see. The puzzle pieces aren’t to many or too small, they’re a good size and all fit into the same body outline stencil.



3. Educa First words– This particular one is great because I am venturing into spelling land with her. And anything that motivates or helps her is fantastic for me. There are three, four and five letter words in the puzzle box, and it’s kind of like picture scrabble. In fact this game can be made with scrabble tiles and printed images. This helps in building vocabulary and boosting confidence. I played this with Batool only after I came back to Hyderabad, and I started off with three letter words, and some simple 4 letter words. The good thing was that she was familiar with all of these words, and was looking forward to learning the spellings. To promote independent play there’s a magic loupe in the contents, which helps children correct their own spelling mistakes.





4. The Hueys in ‘None the number and ‘The new sweater’  by Oliver Jeffers





I am a big Oliver Jeffers fan, and this trip got only the above two books. They both have humor in them and teach good concepts. ‘None the number’ introduces the value of and number zero. It’s beautifully written and it helped me make Batool understand too. Because sometimes, zero can be a difficult thing to explain!, the introduction of “none” to the vocabulary is an added bonus.

‘The new sweater’ is a book about finding your own uniqueness, and not being afraid to embrace your own personality. It’s written in a simple story form, and is a great concept to introduce at the childhood level, tolerance, acceptance etc are some concepts that the child can grab from this book. I think it’s a beautiful book that even adults can learn from. And all Oliver Jeffers books make great gifts.

That’s all for now. I need to become more prompt with my posts, if you have any suggestions please leave them in the comments below….

Happy reading mommies!

Batools Birthday Part 1 of 2

May 19th! Batool turned 5 years old!. I can’t believe it, I don’t feel as though the 5 years just “flew by”, however I do feel like her getting older is making her less controllable hehe. I have to beg for hugs and kisses, and I know soon she will be too heavy for me to lift and grab and squeeze….IMG_2693

It’s an accomplishing feeling, we are so career driven and women in general especially younger women, my age group tend to weigh their accomplishments in terms of educational qualifications and jobs. There’s nothing wrong in that, whoever for me no matter what the most significant thing in my life would be that I am a mother. It’s the most satisfying thing.

Stopping my random ramble, I am dividing her birthday post into two parts, the first part is going to be about what we did, and second part about her presents. I will review and discuss them. So here’s what happened…..

The day started off with a visit to Dubai Festival city play area, which she enjoys a lot.






Then came the cake cutting….



Next post coming soon…

What do I do? Introducing 'The 24 hour hussle'

I have always been a keen observer, and try to draw as many lessons as I can from not just my own experiences in life but also from those of others. There’s always a phase where certain wisdom is relevant over other. I call my recent discovery ‘the 24 hour hustle’. The interesting aspect of this theory is that it can be used in an humorous sence, it’s a multifaceted.

I have a very busy life, like any other mother on the planet. I however have been told by several people on several occasions “how do you manage so many things, especially with a child”. And while ‘where there is a will, there is a way’ applies here 100%, it is also the realisation that there are only 24 hours in a day, and this fact can be viewed with ‘glass half full, half empty’ perspective.

‘The 24 hour husstle’ is a way to keep myself motivated, the more I am able to accomplish in a day the more I learn

about the audacity of those 24 hours. There will be lazy days no doubt, but a recent introspection has helped me conclude that I have a tendency to work like crazy, and then just want to not even get out of the house. I don’t know if it’s the healthiest way to function, but it works for me. I shall clear at this point that I don’t usually have the luxury to take a break as often as I want or need. The more work you have on hand, the more productive you are and the more exhausted you will get. And that’s a fact, and with people like me the amount of work only increases. I have to admit though, I wasn’t as open initially. Around 5 years ago, I didn’t know I had this capacity. It’s only after having Batool that I realised that I needed to have more in my life to prove to myself and also to be a good role model to Batool and all other young moms out there. Being a mother shouldn’t and doesn’t stop you from achieving any goals, if anything it will motivate you. This is subject to how driven you are and your personality. The bottom line being; you are a human being before you are anyones anything.

So what is it that I do on a regular basis? The following are a regular part of my life apart from being a mother:

1. Studying

2. Blogging (my blog and other freelance blogging)

3. Job

4. Teaching at my Sunday school

5. Running my Sunday school

6. Volunteering and doing community service (this is rather random in terms of institution and type of work)

And this schedule is about to get crazy after my present holiday. Starting June I am going to have a 6 day working week. By that I don’t been I will be at my job for 6 days, but that the many things I do will take up 6 days of the week, and that one day “off” will be to get organised and catch up on left over work. This is me looking at the glass half full with my 24hours.

This way of life really helps you become productive, and automatically omits things that you don’t truly value. Your mind will make you conscious of the number of hours left, and you will prioritise, organise accordingly and realise that many things you held as “important” aren’t really that significant to you.

There will always be people who will demotivate you, or make you feel like you’re wasting time or are not that interesting anymore. Most of these people are lazy 😉 Trust me on that. They can’t understand the ‘why’ behind working hard. And there’s absolutely nothing to be ashamed of. I do come across days where the physical, emotional and mental exhaustion takes a toll, and I just want to hide somewhere, be surrounded by white and silence, but that’s all part of the hassle and is a tiny phase, if anything it will increase your strength.

It is important to surround yourself by people who appreciate you, and your work. This is a very important factor, you have to also know what helps you unwind, it would be a day out with friends, a book, a chill movie, a quiet few minutes, writing a diary etc. could be anything, but it has to be time efficient. You can’t spend more hours unwinding than being productive.

I have decided to work on a new agenda, ie to sleep less, I want to gradually bring it to 5 hours, and maybe a power nap of 15 mins (if needed) and eating less. This will be a simultaneous work on self-control that I am looking forward to, plus the reduced hours of sleep will “increase” the number of hours for being productive.

In the past three years, I have experienced a great sense of accomplishment and confidence from my multitasking routine. I have discovered my love for hardwork, not just for myself but in others. I admire people with a ‘no nonsense’ attitude, who have a focus each and everyday. I aspire to be that person, there’s only 24 hours that we get each day, precious 24 hours and how dare we waste them?

I have a new sense of appreciation for people with drive. Those who aspire to do something with the skills they have been gifted, and I don’t mean this in the career aspect, just as human beings. Only those who have discovered the potential in their personalities can truly be productive on a regular basis. We come across so many talented people who are not contributing to the world in anyway. If that person is you, wake up, and do what you need to, because it’s your right. With all this appreciation comes low tolerance for laziness. An aversion to those who spread the vibe of nothingness. It comes with the mind-set I guess.

What are your thoughts? (Comment, share, like)

25 Facts about me

The last time I did the 25 facts about me post it was July 2013! So I thought of doing it again…Let’s get started:

1. I am border line obsessed with the “colour” white.

2. Big fan of Gordon Ramsay. His passion and drive is inspiring. Read his autobiography too and highly recommend it.

3. I don’t like wearing slippers/sandals outside the house. I prefer shoes.

4.My daughter is partially sighted

5. Money doesn’t motivate me to perform better at work

6. I don’t have the patience to watch a movie that is more than 90mins long. It would have to be gripping, and super interesting. I can’t stand Bollywood movies.

7. I do not like and never will spend precious hours of my life watching Sci-fi movies.

8. I have found new love in board games, and games in general provided there is some level of intellectual stimulation involved.

9.My favourite perfume is Echo by Davidoff, it’s an ultimate mood lifter for me, and I sometimes just spritz it only for that purpose.

10. I like long quiet drives, but don’t know how to drive

11. In my ideal world I would never work, I prefer studying and doing volunteer work and being a homemaker.

12. I enjoy going on walks

13. Mirinda is my favourite soft drink and Maltesers are my favourite candy

14.I am an extrovert who likes to have a lot of friends. I avoid extended family.

15. I hate Hyderabad. The people in Hyderabad have sick, low IQ, conformist, hypocritical mentalities

16. I have forgotten how to swim and want to learn it.

17. I can spend hours watching beauty related youtube videos

18. I have finally started fitting into Medium sized clothes, weigh 63 kilos, and want to hit my 55kilo target by end the of 2015.

19. I don’t understand the logic behind celebrating birthdays.

20. I prefer writing in black ink.

21. I am extremely moody, and that pisses me off too, which makes me even more moody 😉

22. I watched all 15 seasons of ER back to back

23. I believe that people without a religion can’t be humans to their potential and humans who can’t be humans shouldn’t call themselves as being part of any religion.

24. I have developed very low tolerance to BS since Feb 2015.

25. I describe myself as a life-long learner, and one man army.

Scholastic Haul book review 1

I had blogged just few days ago about the 9 book purchases I made. And it’s time for some reviewing!

1. Who wears Glasses? by Ana Galan, Illustrated by Seb Burnett

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Batool simply loved this book, being a spectacles wearer herself she was happy to see animals wearing them just like her. The book itself is well written, the content rhymes, and is funny too. Batool understood the humor in the book, and one would think that it’s going to be a book that won’t provide any substance to the reader beyond the satisfaction of others wearing specks, but it has depth. The specks are animal appropriate, relating to their physical features, interests, environment, activities etc. Each animal has it’s own personality, which can be understood by their specks.

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CAM03053 This is a great book for children who like animals, have siblings or friends who wear specks, they can learn to respect them instead of bully. And obviously for the child who wears specks this is going to be confidence build up.

2. Clifford goes to the Doctor by Norman Bridwall

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As mentioned, I was looking forward to introducing Clifford to Batool. She enjoyed reading this, found it incredibly funny how the whole check-up with grown up Clifford went. This was a good first book for her, she’s already asking me to start reading the other two! so that’s a great response.This book is about not rejecting, and solving a problem. In the beginning Clifford is a tiny puppy, and has his first appointment, and by the next one he’s a giant healthy dog, but the Dr. doesn’t ask him to leave because he can’t fit through the door, she instead transports him on a truck, weighs him on an industrial weighing machine and does the whole check-up. This is a lesson for kids to not give up, and try to find creative solutions to problems.

She could relate her doctor appointments with Cliffords, one of the reasons why I picked up this particular doctor visit book is because she’s having vaccinations lined up this year. And it’s been quite a while since she’s experienced one of those. Will be reading this book again, before her vaccinations next month, just to ease her into it. I liked also that the Clifford book didn’t have any inappropriate illustrations, the doctor was not wearing unreasonably weird clothes, and the colours in the book are vibrant and illustrations easy to visualise for her.

Observations and tips:

1. Batools picking up books and trying to reach phonically on her own now.

2. Introduce sight words to your child, and initially let them read a word or two on their own while reading with them. Praise them when they try also, this will make them feel proud, and motivate them

3. Make reading an enjoyable experience, books are not to make yourself feel lonely, they’re to make sure you can enjoy your own company. Take pics, make memories.

4. Batool laughed heartily while reading the Clifford book, the Dr. having to climb on his tummy, and entering his whole mouth to check it. She laughed out even later remembering it all.

5. Reading a tiny book with children is a great way to bond with them, they won”t judge you so make it fun for yourself, change your voice when delivering dialogues of different characters, re-read funny names, spend time exploring the illustrations, ask the child ‘imagine if your dr. entered your mouth’, they would relate everything.

6. Answer questions when the child asks while reading, they are visual and so will have questions about the illustrations more. And while that may seem to us like they’re distracted, they’re actually trying to relate the image to the story. The illustrators of childrens books are no ordinary people, they spend endless hours trying to make it the most stimulating experience for the child. Let them absorb the vibrant colours, shapes and scenes. Let the child visit the vet, the doctor, the market etc. through the illustration.

7. As parents we should read the book alone first, try to derive hidden lessons in them, and then give a full experience to the child. Childrens books are meant for educational entertainment. Because they’re at the peak of learning and absorbing, it’s a great way to give them exposure to long term wisdom through tiny books, with funny stories and endless illustrations.

Have you read any of these books? What are your tips on reading to your child?