Kitchen Adventures

Yesterday  I  removed the idli steamer from the cabinet to give it a rinse and pulled out the plates when, shocker of shocks, what do I see but a decomposing banana peel. It was properly disgusting.

Then, when I was making pakodas I got an egg fro the fridge and rapped it on the counter to crack it open and shocker of shocks, what do I see but a fridge-cold, boiled egg. It was properly ridiculous.

Cooking is full of (sometimes unsavoury) surprises with toddlers and deceptive looking eggs in the house.

The end.



It is morning. In the quiet stillness of dawn, the discernible ticking of the clock goes solemnly on and on as light begins to trickle through the windows. One is conscious of every second with every somber tick. There is a gravity in commonplace things when the day is still new. It is as though the house itself, with all its elements, is slumbering alongside its occupants; any slight movement to wake it while moving a chair or opening a door sounds too much like a jarring rebuke contrasting the peace of reticent daybreak. Presently, the birds begin to chirp and the wheels begin to creak as the day is set into motion with the troop of early-risers commencing their day. As the hammer on the construction site gets louder and one becomes conscious of the sounds of footsteps and the muffled morning traffic, the ticking of the clock sounds less solemn. The winter sun has risen with a mild, golden glow and there is a thrill in breathing the chill, morning air and in the earnestness of filling what is to come, with goodness and kindness, inshaAllah.

“We have reached the morning, and at this very time unto Allah belongs all sovereignty, Lord of the worlds. O Allah, I ask You for the good of this day, its triumphs, its victories, its light, its blessings, and its guidance. And I take refuge in You from the evil of this day and the evil that follows it.” [Abu Dawud]

Three Beautiful Things


  1. Since the past few months Ali has developed this heart-warming habit of placing his hand on my cheek as he falls asleep. After he is done with his routine of climbing me and falling off in giggles as I try to put him to sleep and the drowsiness overcomes him, with an adorable, ‘Mamma, yhari come’ he pulls my face towards him and putting his warm, little palm on my cheek falls off to sleep in 3.5 seconds. And this is from the sweetness of motherhood. =)
  2. Winters in Oman are really the best time of the year here. After months of dehydrating heat, the weather mellows down beautifully, not getting too chilly or cloudy. The mornings are so hopeful and fresh that it is immensely quieting to the soul to take a walk in any of the numerous parks here with the sun shining down upon you. The other day we had taken our lunch for a picnic to a nearby park by the corniche and we were one of only a handful families there. Under the shade of the green trees in the solitary park, Asma and I turned the wheel of the merry go round, her squealing with joy. It was a nice afternoon, alhumdulillah.
  3.  Ever since I was a teenager I’ve loved wearing socks. Bright, snug, warm socks for chilly toes after baths. And at the end of the day, its still nice to remove the socks to slip them between the quilt and the cool sheets. So all in all, socks are like comfort food for the feet in winters.


It has come to my attention, after reading my sister’s post, that this here blog has shown a distinct lack of lists in recent years. This is unacceptable considering my love for list-making and therefore, in true H-copying-S-in-‘most-everything fashion, I am also going to be making lists on current goals I have for a healthier body, heart and mind. This reminds me of the time S convinced me to start a diary saying we’ll both keep diaries, then exchange and read when we reach the ripe old age of 20. Well, let’s just say she had a growth spurt and turned 20 a few days later. 😀

Back to the lists!

Everything Goals

  • Drink more water. Drink more water. Drink more water and then you won’t have to cry about dehydration induced headaches and fatigue.
  • Eat well and get in good shape.
  • Stop and recognize what leads you to that stressful frenzy, then avoid doing that the next time.
  • Relax, take your time and enjoy simple tasks. It’s okay to let some things just be. When you have a 4 and 2 year old in the house, things have a tendency to not stay put in right angles and that is alright.
  • Be more consistent with learning the Qur’an.
  • Stay offline more often.
  • Every once in a while, visit a neighbour or call a grandparent.
  • Write.
  • Be kinder.

There, that ought to be a decent start.


Early Birds

These days we have started a new tradition of sorts in our household. Some mornings after dropping Asma off at school, S drives us to the Corniche and Ali and I walk on the grassy turf while Ali, with such enthusiasm felt only by children, excitedly points at the hopping crows or the water spouting from the sprinklers. Excepting the few men tending to the grass in the distance, we are the only people sitting on the benches above the blue, blue sea, surrounded by the kind, old mountains behind us and in feeling the heat of the morning sun and listening to the quiet in the clear chirping of the birds, even as the cars whir past behind us-I feel so happy. =) Alhumdulillah. It requires a lot of buttering of husband but I pray it is a tradition that sticks awhile. Other days we just drive around and have cups of tea or eat south indian breakfast, complete with filter coffee and S much prefers this latter sort of tradition more. 😀

Well, then we get back into the car and drive back home to start laundry cycles, prep lunch, vacuum, dust, fold, read, feed, mop, and you know the drill. 😀

The end

To Remember

The other day Asma, Ali and I walked to K.M. for our little breather-outing. We crossed the road and walked past the pet fish shop where Asma had already run ahead of us looking at all the little, orange fish in their tanks. I hurried them on after a minute, and we entered the supermarket–I immediately realize it might have been too busy a day to get Ali here without a stroller.

We took the escalator upstairs and got Asma her whiteboard marker and as we finish up with the cashier, Asma runs to those coin rides by the elevator. All of a sudden I’m looking around wildly for Ali and see he’s run to the edge of the escalator. A frazzled moment of running and scooping him up and I’m sure this was much too busy a day to get Ali without a stroller.

Well, then we went downstairs, got a few groceries, successfully dodging most of the junk, and walked back home–stopping by the pet fish shop to look at all the little, orange fish in their tanks.

The End.

I realize that I have associated the soft, whirring of a ceiling fan as it turns overhead with summer mornings back in my hometown; I’d fall onto the bed and stare as the blades spun, round and round; mellowing in the sloth-like lethargy only summer holidays can produce in the bodies of procrastinating school-goers. I’d watch the moving fan and daydream, hearing from inside my bubble, indistinct sounds of people in the house getting through with their day. I’d roam the house; sometimes sitting by the lady-help, and watch as she washed clothes in the backyard, or picked out wrinkled red chillies for drying. I’d observe with a fascination so natural in a child, as she ground the chillies, working the heavy grinding stones in rhythmic motions. I’d make my way through the dingy kitchen, out through the backdoor and put on the rubber slippers lying on the steps; and if I was feeling adventurous, gingerly walk on the moss covered strip between the front porch and the back yard. I would sing to my grandmothers plants in the garden up front, or if it was sunny take a nervous seat on the large, rusting swing by the house, expecting every minute for a monkey to come swinging down from the trees behind.

Then in later years, I would lie on the bed in our room upstairs in Noor, watching the sun flow through the coloured window panes, painting the ceiling with orange and blue; reading and rereading The Hollow as the fan spun on; hiding on the self -named ‘Steps of Despair‘ on the rare mornings I woke up early, sitting with my chin resting on my knees, soaking all the sunshine beaming in through the skylights, all quiet. Not even the sound of the fan up there. And now, so many years later, on the rare afternoons when the kids are sleeping, and everything seems to be resting still within, even as the birds chirp outside and the sun streams in through the open windows, I feel the breeze of the fan on the nape of my neck and hear it spin and my heart remembers something of that old, quiet, peace.


Indeed, the righteous will be in pleasure


On adorned couches, observing.

You will recognize in their faces the radiance of pleasure.

Surah Mutaffifin (22-24)

May Allah have  mercy on us and forgive us our mistakes and bless us with pleasure in Jannah!

Notes about Walking and Miscellaneous Matters


There’s something about walking that I have always thoroughly enjoyed; walking briskly through the drizzle, skipping over the cracks in the pavement as we clambered onto wet taxis while shopping in Mumbai, or  walking around our drab school grounds, ‘chatting like grandmas’ with friends, and now, strolling through parks, pushing a stroller and a chatter box 4 year old in tow 😀 There’s something about walking, especially in quiet places, that brings out your pensive mood and starts off a whole station’s worth of trains of thought. This love of walking probably grew out of all those Ladies Market strolls we used to go with Ammi. Those walks, however, were not stimuli to pensive thoughts; teenage ansgt was the most pervading emotion then, but all that meandering through those lanes did lead on to a love for the exercise.


The other day we were at a McDonalds when the lady behind the counter had to tell S that the ‘blue’ balloon he was pointing to was, in fact, purple. :l Also, while we were getting to the car in the parking lot in front of our house, what do i see? A ridiculous concert (of sorts) in the middle of the street; large crowds of people filming a man onstage who was singing and trying to get them to sing with him. Their reaction was mildness personified. Is it possible to completely disapprove of someone doing something and still feel sorry for them? It is. :E


Notes to self: Why be apprehensive when you can be hopeful? It will get past. Act in a way that will please Allah subhanahu wa ta’aala and things will fall in place so astoundingly that you’ll be wondering why on earth you were apprehensive instead of hopeful in the first place.