~Attention~

This blog is intended for women or sisters of Islam only! Any comments, emails, or messages from men will be disregarded, deleted, or blocked.

Fear Allah and treat your fellow sisters of Islam as you would want your mother, sisters, or wife to be treated.

Saturday, March 31, 2012

The Benefits of Sujood- Prostration


To be close to Allah, you have to go into sujood. 
The Prophet (sallallahu alahi wa salam) said:


أَقْرَبُ مَا يَكُونُ الْعَبْدُ مِنْ رَبِّهِ وَهُوَ سَاجِدٌ
“The closest that a servant is to his Lord is when he is in prostration.” 


(Muslim) 


The more you humble yourself and go into sujood, the closer you are getting to Allah; and indeed, He elevates you. 
The Prophet (sallallahu alahi wa salam) said:

من تواضع لله رفعه
“Whoever humbles himself before Allah, Allah will elevate him.” 


(Muslim) 


“Prostrate much because there is no Muslim that prostrates to God except that God raises him one degree in Paradise by it and forgives for him a sin.” 


(Ahmad) 


“My ummah on that day will surely have bright faces because of sujood, and bright arms and feet because of ablution.” 

(Ahmad) 


Thursday, March 29, 2012

Arabic Lamb Stew

This lamb stew/soup can also be replaced with chicken or beef.

1 lb of thawed or fresh lamb
2 TBS Olive Oil
1 Onion
3 Garlic cloves
2 Tomatoes
5-6 Mushrooms
2 Carrots
1 Zuchinni peeled
3-4 Cloves
1/4 tsp pepper
2 tsp of chicken boullian
Depending on how salty your boullian is, it's your preference rather  you need salt or not.
Water to cover
Directions:

If meat is frozen set out to thaw.


 


Take your one onion and 3 cloves of garlic and chop roughly.





 Take Olive Oil and put in a large pan.





Heat Olive Oil and brown the meat.
                                   

                                        


Once browned like so add onions and garlic.






Chop and slice all vegetables shown as below or to your preference.










Once onions begin to soften add vegetables and seasonings.









Add just enough water to cover vegetables and meat.





Bring to a boil and cover. Once the meat is beginning to be tender remove the lid and let boil to evaporate 
some of the liquid to make the soup thicker.





Serve with white rice or you can serve it just as soup with pita bread.




Tuesday, March 27, 2012

2 Months 3 Weeks and 4 Days!

This morning we had a doctors appointment at 9:15. Ahmad now weighs 12 pounds 5 ozs and is 22 3/4 inches long! Our doctor said that I am doing a great job with the baby because now he looks his age! He also said we no longer have to have the heart monitor on him during the day only during the night while my husband and I sleep. We will be able to return the monitor after Ahmad is 6 months old. Can't wait!

Saturday, March 24, 2012

A Low Moment


Today, as I was on facebook, a friend of mine- who was suppose to be having her baby 1 week before me but then my little guy decided to come out 6 weeks early- posted new pictures. Pictures of her and her family that went to the beach or going to the park and flying kites- her family co-shares the house. So there are like 4 families in one big house.

I will admit I was jealous for a moment- astfirguallah. Neither my husband and I have family here, we can't go to the beach with our family, or go to the park and have a picnic. We don't even spend much time together because my husband works 12 hours a day 6 days a week. The only day off he does get we try to squeeze in everything in one day. Washing the laundry, grocery shopping, family time, etc. Made me hit a low point today when I saw those pictures. Don't get me wrong, I thank God everyday for my wonderful husband and lovely son, but sometimes I wish we had more family time together. Sometimes I do not see it as fair, but life isn't always how you want it, is it?

Friday, March 23, 2012

Arabic White Rice

Someone anonymous asked me to make a few posts of my recipes that I use when I cook. Do bear in mind that I don't just go by one recipe, I look at several and combine them- taking the things that I think will make the best outcome. In the end, I end up with my own recipe. So I will be posting a simple recipe today, my favorite rice. :) Every Arab loves good rice and my husband and his friends love mine and I hope that all of you will as well!

What you will need is:

1/4 cup olive oil
3-4 peppercorns
1/4 tsp coriander seeds
About 1 tsp- 1 1/2 tsp of Salt (whatever to your taste)
1/4 cup vermicelli noodles (the inch long ones)
1 cup of rice (I use parboiled Sela rice)
2 cups of water 



Take the olive oil and put in a medium sized sauce pan



Put the coriander seeds, salt, peppercorns, and vermicelli noodles in the pan.





Mix thoroughly and start heating at medium heat.


Prepare your 1 cup of rice.


Once your noodles are as brown as these add the rice.


Mix the rice and the noodles together so everything gets coated with the oil.


Then add the 2 cups of water.


Once the water begins to boil, turn down to low heat, cover and let cook for 20-30 minutes or until rice is tender.


Once done, serve with a soup of any kind and a salad. 
*Warning* be careful of the peppercorns. If you eat one your mouth will be on fire, if you like you can use ground pepper just your rice won't be white it will have a dirty tinge to it.


The soup in this picture is an Arabic lamb stew that can be used with any meat. Chicken, beef or lamb. Simple and super delicious. Insha'allah I will be posting how to cook this soup soon. :)

Enjoy! 



Thursday, March 22, 2012

Cradle Cap


So my baby Ahmad got cradle cap about a week ago. At first I had noticed his scalp- he has tons of hair- was beginning to look dandruffy. I looked up cradle cap under google images and saw horrifying pictures of it when it wasn't tended to. I did a little research and found that the best way to treat it was with any kind of oil, olive oil, baby oil, coconut oil, etc. I used baby oil since it smells much better then olive oil and a fine tooth comb- you know the kind that comes along with the baby hair brush.

All you do is put the oil generously on the babies scalp and let it set for a few hours, then you take the comb and comb against the grain of the hair, or if your baby doesn't have hair, you just comb it against the scaly dandruff. I would comb his hair like this while breast feeding him since he HAS to hold still while eating. Afterwards I gave him a bath to wash out the oil and extra dandruff that the comb couldn't get. I did this 2 times in 4 days and Ahmad is cradle cap free. Just be sure you catch it ahead of time before it gets out of control!

Monday, March 12, 2012

Hobbies of Mine


I have been kind of lost at what to write lately. I don't always want to fill my blog posts with my husband and I's social lives- being that they tend to get repetitive. We visit the same people and basically do the same things. So I thought that maybe writing about what I enjoy would be something fun for me, and at the same time giving all of my new and old acquaintances a chance to know me better.

A first hobby of mine is sewing! I absolutely love to sew and create my own patterns. I can take about any store bought item, lay it out, cut a pattern from it, and sew it up. I can also take a basic pattern and create my own styles. There are a few things that I have not mastered and am terrified to even attempt. For instance, I have never figured those invisible zippers or cuffs of a man's shirt. I am completely intimidated on sewing new couch covers- you know the kind that are fitted and sewed on the couch. Other then these 3 things I can do about everything else. 

I also LOVE to cook. I remember when I lived with my mother, that I asked her and my step-father to teach me to cook. So my step dad handed me this potato along with a humongous knife- at least it was huge in my little hands- and said once I learned how to peel a potato they would teach me. That day I raised the flag of defeat and gave up.

When I went to live with my father, my step mother was a kitchen hog and didn't like anyone cooking in there except for herself. Even though I got the "privilege" of being the dish washer. It was when I was 14 I started to learn to cook. I had dropped out of school and started working on a Mennonite farm. When 12 o'clock rolled around, I would help the ladies prepare lunch and this relit the passion of mine. It was like that knowledge was always there it just needed a little push. I learned everything so quickly and it seemed that no matter what I put my hands to it always turned out good.

When I was 16 I started living or taking care of myself. I was boarding with the same Mennonite family I had been working for and we had days where each of us ladies would cook.  But before long my I got antsy and wanted to do something new, so I moved to another domestic farm and helped out an elderly couple. There I cooked all their meals for them, they were vegan so I tried my hand at that and had great success. I was with them for about 6 months until I got the opportunity to go to Puerto Rico. Originally I was only going to stay there for 3 weeks but then the mother of the family had to return to the states to take care of her mother and asked me if I could stay with her family of 4 and care for them and the house. I agreed and this is when my cooking was challenged.

There were 3 grown men- one was the father 2 were the sons- and an 11 year old girl. The men did construction and had fierce appetites- plus they too were vegan. Lets just say, every week I had to bake 7 loaves of bread...

After spending about 3 months in Puerto Rico, I went to Georgia to a Seventh-Day Adventist health institute/medical missionary college. Yes, before I was a proud Seventh-Day Adventist. There of course I learned even more about vegan cooking after being the supervisor in the student cafeteria for morning shift and the only worker/cook for the hospital kitchen in the evenings. (During the day time I was the supervisor in the hospital laundry department).

Later, after I came to know about Islam and embraced it, I went down to Florida to start everything new. I worked in a Pakistani/ Indian store/restaurant, for 3 months- after 2 months of searching for a job. It was there I met my husband who is from Iraq. So now I have learned so many Arabic dishes, that I would say that my cooking abilities are very wide ranged. From the traditional mid-western dishes, to the Mennonites, from Puerto Rico, to vegan and from vegan to Arab.

I have so many more hobbies that I could go on about but I just realized how long this blog post has gotten so I will end it now.

Monday, March 5, 2012

My Nightmare of a Night


Last night when my husband came home from work, he told me that we were invited to the families house for dinner- the family that I had over for dinner last week. Do bear in mind we co-shared their house with them for about 4 months and I knew exactly what to expect. At first I said no. Then my husband reassured me that the wife wasn't doing any cooking, her brother in-law T was cooking for all the company. So I got me and the baby ready while my husband showered and shaved. When we got there, there was H cooking fried fish, fried mushrooms, mashed potatoes, and macaroni and cheese. Talk about a heart attack ready to happen.

G and H children were all excited about the baby. But I noticed the little girl had a cough so I tried to keep her distant from Ahmad. I for sure didn't want my little man to get sick!

Finally the rest of the company came and the last person to come was T. He had rice, bamia, chicken, and salad. H came to me and asked if what I wanted from her food, I was stuck at what to say. You see, before when we co-shared the house- really my husband and I were in their "guest house" but we co-shared the kitchen- I would go in the kitchen and there would be her families dishes, in the beginning I thought, 'she just must be busy with the children, let me clean things up for her.' But every time I would come back, everything would be messed up and dirty again. Every time I went in their part of the house, she would just be at the computer while her kids were destroying the house. EVERY TIME I cleaned the kitchen there would be a gazillion cockroaches.

I admit, in Florida it is nearly impossible to keep bugs out of your house unless you get it sprayed every month, but there is a way to keep them at bay, by keeping your house tidy and things cleaned up. So when she offered me her food, the only thing flashing through my head was bugs crawling all over her dishes, pans, utensils, and that artery clogging dinner. So I declined and said I needed to change and feed the baby. I asked her where I could go. She said that I could go in her sons room as it was the cleanest.

When I went in the room it had the strangest smell. I was afraid to sit on his bed, as the son is a toddler and who knows if he had wet it. I put the babies blanket on the rug and started to change him when all I could see on the black rug were tiny little cockroaches . I got terrified, grabbed my baby and went on the bed. I started to feed him when there was a 1 inch long cockroach in the boys bed, so I jumped up and just was standing while feeding the baby. I was really close to tears until my husband came. I told him everything that had happened, and he went and got me food from what T brought. By then Ahmad was finished eating, so he took the baby and I went back to eat. 

Finally we were going home. I told my husband that I never wanted to go there again. That if he wanted to see his friends, they can come over to our little apartment. Thankfully there was no argument about it and he agreed. Maybe some of you won't understand my feelings about this, but I really can't stand a place that is dirty. Perhaps its a disorder of some sort, but when I see things like that my skin crawls and I feel like I can lose everything that is on my stomach. 

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Postpartum Mood Swings


I never took to heart the things I heard about postpartum hormones, but now I am experiencing them. I don't know how "bad" I have gotten it but lets just say, sometimes I am so happy and other times I climb down this deep dark pit of sadness. Little things make me go down that black hole. For instance, we live in apartments and even though I keep my house clean, we still have a bug problem. Last night I went into the kitchen and saw little baby cockroaches, and I just started crying. I don't know why exactly. Its like I don't even know myself anymore. I just really hope that these hormonal kinks get straightened out soon. I want to be my bubbly, happy, carefree self again.

Friday, March 2, 2012

2 Months

Ahmad is 2 months old today! When I look at him I am just completely amazed, I remember how tiny he was when he was first born, and now I see this chubby little baby in my arms! He is 10 1/2 pounds and 21 inches long which is only 1lb and 2-3 inches behind a normal full term baby. Doctor said that he is doing good considering the fact that he was born 6 weeks early. He holds up his head now, makes noises other then crying, is noticing his hands and feet, and is drooling everywhere! I am just so thank to God for blessing my son and allowing him to have a life and giving me the privilege to raise this little boy.

Allah


A poem I wrote, I hope you all enjoy!


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


What Allah Is To Me


He is filled with kindness and sympathy,
Never to be found with a lack empathy.
And yet, overflowing with the love of a million mothers,
The One who answers our prayers and unites us as brothers.

The Forgiver of those who repent with sincerity,
The Owner of the key to all wisdom, power, and glory.
He does not beget neither is He begotten,
He is the Creator of all things and is not of His creation.

The path of His servants will never be concealed,
For He guides or leads astray of those whom He wills.
So let us strive to be among the rightly guided,
Submitting to Allah, who for His servants have always provided.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Just Because You're Poor...

Right now my husband and I are living in a one bedroom apartment. I don't mind small houses being that I lived in an one bedroom house with 5 other family members for 4 years. But I know that soon the day is coming when my baby will need his own room, so my husband and I are in search of a new house. 

My husbands boss T, who also happens to be from Iraq, has a out 5-6 rental houses. Before we moved into this apartment we were co-sharing a house with T's brother- not a pleasant experience! Then T offered us to rent from him in a house that his brother lived in before- that was the time when they only had 2 children, now that they have 4 they had to move to a bigger house to where they are now. The minute I walked in the house, I wanted to turn around and run! T hadn't fixed or changed anything since his brother's family left, and lets just say, dirty dishes still in the sink, 1-2 year old food still in the fridge, unfixed blankets still on the bed! I am a clean freak and my skin was crawling- a family saying of ours, "Just because your poor don't mean you have to be dirty." Well after we turned T's offer down, he fixed it up along with his other houses. So soon, we are going to pay some visits to them. 

There is this one my husband really likes that is a 2 bedroom and one bathroom. T is still in the process of getting it fixed up so I am not allowed to pass judgement on it YET! :D My husband said that it has a really big laundry room! Can't wait to have my own washer and dryer, very inconvenient to take clothes and a 2 month old baby to the laundry mat! 

This morning, when Ahmad woke up to eat, I fed him and he slept for about 1 1/2 hours. When he woke up again he so happy! Smiling, cooing, and grabbing his feet with his fat little hands. My husband was so happy to see this side of his son so he picked him up and was hugging him when the little guy decided to spit up all over his baba!

Today we have a Doctor's appointment. Hubby thinks Ahmad is for sure over 12lbs, I won't be surprised if he is. I will write an update on this same blog post with how much he weighs now when we return from the Doctors.

*Update* Ahmad is 10 1/2 pounds and 21 inches. They said that he is only 1 pound and 2-3 inches behind a full term baby. For those who do not know Ahmad was born 6 weeks early. 

Ahmad's Second Birthday!

Our Anniversary!