Thursday, August 19, 2010

Ramadan Mubarak!


Belated Ramadan Mubarak to all. May Allah accept your fasting and answer your Duas! May you reap all the blessings of this wonderful month and may it strengthen your Iman and bring you closer to Allah! Ameen

It has been a really long time since I posted. Alhamdulillah I made it back from Kuwait and had a wonderful trip. Sadly the computer at my inlaws was acting up so I had no access to the net. But that actually turned out to be a blessing in disguise since I was able to concentrate on enjoying my time there instead of spending hours infront of the computer as I have a habit of doing. :))

Well since it is Ramadan and I am trying to get the most out of it, I have decided not to post until after Eid. I want to try and keep my mind occupied with worshipping activities as much as possible. So inshallah my stories from my trip and the pics from there will come after Ramadan.

Take care everyone and have a great Ramadan!

Salaams for now :))

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Leavin on a Jet Plane :)

"The world is a book, and those who do not travel, read only one page. "

Snt Augustine

I am so very very excited! My plans got finalized today to inshallah travel to Kuwait this Saturday :)

My in laws live there, so I am going to spend some quality family time with them and one of my sister in laws. I love the country and have had many great stays there. The shopping is great, the restaurants are really yummy, and I love being near the sea. My in laws are the most loving and wonderful people you could imagine, and I love spending time with them.

Another great thing about Kuwait is that it is of course a country that caters to Muslims, so there are all kinds of women only amenities. Gyms, water parks, salons and so on. And as an added extra bonus, even the malls have little prayer areas for shoppers to hop into if prayer time arrives as they are shopping. I have wanted to go to a gym for such a long time, and to go swimming!

The only downside to all of this is that currently the weather there is between 115-119 degrees Fahrenheit!! That is HOTTTT ! Not that it’s very cold down here in Texas, but it’s defiantly not that hot. But it’s worth it so I won’t complain.

I love travelling! Anywhere will do. I just love being in motion and heading to a new place. I always get such an uplifting rush to just be in new surroundings. I love interacting with different people and getting to know more about their countries foods and customs. Alhamdulillah I have had the opportunity to travel quite a bit, but it is never enough and there are still so many places I’d love to visit, Inshallah.

One of the things I love about travel is airports. I know it sounds strange, but I actually don’t mind layovers that much. In fact I enjoy the time to roam around the airports and watch the other travelers as they make their way.

When you find yourself sitting at an airport, any airport in the world, cast a gaze around and you will see joy & pain, ecstasy & agony, affliction & absolution unfolding within the unrelenting aura of arrivals & departures.

Where else can two people be experiencing love's immense ecstasy ten feet from two others experiencing love's crushing agony? The airport is one of the great paradoxical locations on this planet.

Imagine the number of love's transactions that occur on any given day at any given airport in any given city; it must be staggering. And think of all of the chapters of all love's novellas that are written within the boundaries of airports. Private and personal love stories, some more amazing than anything ever conceived in any Hollywood studio.

Imagine all of the different people, each with a different story, heading to different places, yet at a brief moment in time all find themselves under one roof. The hellos, the goodbyes, the happiness and sadness. And all of that is unfolding on a constant basis in these great intersection points of people’s paths.

Amazing really! I love being a traveler; I love being in airports and just observing all the people around me. Watching how they interact, and sometimes filling in their stories with my own imagination. I imagine where they came from and where they might be going, who they have left behind and who they will meet.

Travelling makes the world appear a smaller place and all of us people as more alike than not. You see that at the basis of it all, we all pretty much want the same things, feel the same emotions, and go thru similar trials. Yet when travelling you also get a chance to see firsthand the beautiful differences that also exist and make us all quite special. ..

Cant wait….

(I'll be posting from tere too and I'll be sure to post interesting pics! )

Salaam all :)

Monday, July 5, 2010

Take it Easy...

Salaams :))

Me and my husband were invited to a Pakistani families house for dinner this Friday. There were about 6-7 families there and many little kiddos. Even though some Pakistanis I have known are a bit liberal thinking and sometimes have mixed gatherings, this time I was pleasantly surprised that us women were in the living room and kitchen and the men had their own separate dining area. I love when the ladies have a comfortable space all to themselves away from the men, since then women tend to relax and good girly chatting follows :)) The house was large and had a second story which made the situation even more comfortable because the kids had their own huge play area with tv and toys upstairs and away from us, so the moms could actually carry a conversation without being jumped on or otherwise distracted by the little ones. As usually is the case with Pakistani gatherings the hostess had made many delicious dishes and yummy chai!

As the evening wore on, and we all went thru discussing the normal topics of clothes, weddings, kid's schools, etc- the conversation headed into Islamic territory...

I was the only woman wearing full hijab there ( Everything covered except the face, hands, and feet, with a properly covering scarf with no hair, neck, or ears showing).

So one of the women asked me why I dress the way I do ,"to that extent" when we are in the States and in her opinion hijab and many of the other laws of Islam were for another time.

Now I'm not going to get into evidences and such, but in summery, my belief is that Islam is the Truth, for all time and that the laws of Islam do not expire and do not change based on where in the world you find yourself.

She went into explaining how in "those times" people dressed like that in general so it wasn't a big change, plus she said she couldn't understand why alot of Muslims "just make religion hard on themselves". In her opinion you are not supposed to make it hard on yourself and if you keep it easy then you will be Religious in the moderate and correct way. In her eyes anything else is extreme. She went as far as to say that Fiqh is man made so not necessary to follow. Many of the other women nodded in agreement since I guess to them her words sounded easy and pleasant.

Wow, did I have alot to say. ( I didn't take it personally that her comments were in a way telling me she thinks me wearing proper hijab is extreme, I saw it as a chance for dawah to a fellow Muslimah. I calmly explained my view that you can not pick and choose in Islam as to what you would like to practise and how. And also only when it is convenient for you. Islam is very complete and Alhamdulillah very straightforward as to the basic requirements. And if we start to knock things off because they are making it difficult on us then I guess fasting should go, and then keeping up with 5 prayers everyday isn't easy eighter so scratch that, and so on. Then we would be left with nothing, and wouldn't be praising Allah in any way or showing that we are thankful for all of his bounty. If we strip away our Islamic practices because they inconvenience us, or like in the case of wearing hijab in the States, because they displease people and make us feel self conscious- then what would separate us from disbelievers? If we are disobeying Allah's laws, and not praising him in any way than what would be left of Islam?

Inshallah some of what I said to the lady made sense to her and maybe got her thinking about rethinking how she practises her Islam. It is difficult when living in Un-Islamic environments to keep our religion, values, and morals intact, but it is a struggle worthy of aLL OF OUR STRENGTH. We as sisters in Islam should really try to keep open communication between all of us, even if there are differences in our practises. We should listen to and support each other and be open to learn from one another in the hopes of staying strong and on the right path. All of us will be tested and will have our weak moments, but if we have good sisters around us for support the path will be much easier, insha allah :))

Friday, July 2, 2010


When was the last time you told someone you would do something, but then did not do it?

Or you did it so poorly that everyone would have been better off if you had said "No" to begin with?

Lately I have been thinking a lot about this, and about how important it is to be a reliable person in every situation in our lives. From being reliable when it comes to promises we make to family and friends, to our responsibilities at work. If we are not, and if people get used to the idea of us as unreliable people they will stop trusting us and relying on us and we might in the end lose important friendships or possibilities at work.
If you make a habit of breaking your promises, you will soon develop a reputation as an unreliable person. If you do not care what people think of you, then maybe there is no reason to worry about it. Nevertheless, if you are a Muslim, reliability should be a strong part of your character. It is a strongly emphasized trait in our Islamic texts! Even one reason our Prophet Mohammad was trusted by his followers when he came to them with the truth is that he already had a reputation as a trustworthy person and was known as "Al-Amin"!

When we say "Yes," but we are consistently unreliable and really mean “No”, we do more than damage our own reputation--we damage Islam’s reputation in the eyes of those who see it through us.
I have never met anyone who really wanted to be known as unreliable. But I have known many people who have too often said "Yes" when they meant and should have said "No." Or they have said "Yes," but then did not perform as they promised.
Now don’t get me wrong. I am not talking about the person who just occasionally does not live up to commitments. We have all experienced that from time to time. No, I am talking about the person who acquires a reputation for not being reliable. And who consistently promises something and does not follow thru.
I have a friend who, on a weekly basis makes plans with me, just to break them at the last moment. The interesting thing is that usually she is the one who suggests the plans. Then calls on the day that we are supposed to meet, sometimes only 30 mins before the meeting time, and runs me thru her excuse. In the beginning I would make all kinds of excuses for her, like she is busy, things came up, she didn’t mean to. But then when it happened 10 times in a row (yes I counted), her making and braking plans with me last minute, I just stopped being able to trust her and believe what she is saying, or that our friendship is important to her. So sadly in my mind she has been written off as a reliable person and someone I can count on or as someone who appreciates my friendship. So now when she suggests something, I just say sure, ok, and then I continue to make my other plans regardless, and without fail she cancels.
There are several reasons people become known as unreliable. Sometimes just recognizing the problem and simply making a conscious effort to do what you say you will do will change your reputation. Or perhaps you need to improve poor personal organization or develop your ability to say "No" to ensure that you can keep your commitments.
If your struggle involves knowing when or how to say "No," that is what you should address and learn how to be more assertive, instead of just saying “Yes”, misleading people that you want to do something, and then not following thru with it in the end.
A reliable person has a track record of keeping promises. An unreliable person shows he or she doesn't really care about others. You can't count on such a person. The benefits of being reliable include promotions at work, better personal relationships, and increased self-esteem.
Being considered reliable means that you are conscientious and keep your promises. A reliable person does not make excuses. People began to trust you and feel comfortable to make plans with you
Certainly, you would want to associate with a person you can count on. Supervisors want to keep employees that are reliable and who they can count on to come to work on time and to complete assigned tasks. Such a person is trusted to do as promised.
The benefits of being reliable are that people trust you and feel they can count on you. A reliable person will get and keep friends much easier than someone who is careless in personal relationships and can't be counted on to keep his or her word. A reliable worker will be trusted to do the job as promised and can reap the rewards of raises and promotions.
Being reliable is an admirable trait. We all dislike dealing with people who are unreliable, so being reliable is a character trait for which we should strive especially in building a strong Muslim character and a very important trait to mirror for our children.
People thank you for it. You get a good reputation. You also feel good about yourself when you do as promised. It is a good feeling to be "a man/woman of your word!"

Assalaamu Aleikum and hello . . .

Wow, I have been meaning to start blogging for quite some time now, and for some reason or another I never did until today.
Just spent 40 mins, getting it set up and just going thru getting to know Blogger. So many little editing options but I think I got it to a place I like. So where to begin...

Well I guess I'll start with a little info about me- I'm 26 as of a week ago, I'm married to a great guy, no kiddos yet, though we would love to have them, but Allah hasn't blessed us yet. Insha allah soon. I was born in the small European country of Bulgaria that is located on the Northern border of Turkey, on the Black Sea. Me and my parents moved to the States when I was 5, and I grew up here. I have gone back and forth between Europe and the States quite a bit, not being able to decide where I want to live. But for now I am in the States. I came to islam about 6 years ago, Alhamdulillah, and have had ups and downs since, in my striving to be a good muslimah. I have worn the hijab since I converted, so 6 years aswell, and though I have to admit it has been a struggle at times I have grown to think of it as a part of me and to accept it with all my heart.

Thats not to say that it is easy wearing it here in the US, but it has gotten easier to handle people's reactions, or rather, to not pay as much attention to people and their reactions, since as I have become more confident in my Islamic identity, I have also become stronger in dealing with negativity from the outside world. (More on that in later posts, though)

I love reading, writing, hijab fashion, and I am a psychology nut. This blog will be a random compilation of many things and subject of interest to me. I'd love for other bloggers to leave comments if they have any, and to share their blogs with me aswell. I think blogging is a great tool for people to share ideas and get to know other peoples point of view. Plus its is a great tool for meeting people from all over the world and exchanging ideas.

Welcome :))