Handbag or Garbage Bag?

Hello my esteemed blogeress',

Today was lovely. I was off from work, got a decent nap this morning, had lunch with my sister and son, then went to Marshall's and splurged on a funky handbag I never thought I would carry. The colors are outrageous. I'll have to post a pic.

Also, while shopping in CVS, they had a sale on Maybelline Lash Stiletto Mascara (pictured above)....buy one get one free. Who can resist that? Not I. I must testify, that this stuff is the BUSINESS! It smells too floral, but hey. The lashes look fab. No curling needed. No clumps. I am already hooked. Go get some today.

I have also come to the conclusion that I am my own Kryptonite sometimes. I hold myself to ridiculous standards, and when I can't meet them, I go insane. At least I can admit it. Now to change it? That's the real challenge. I thought if I attempted to rectify big things in my life, that all the little things would fall into place. Not so, at least not for me. I have learned over the past few weeks, that if I address the little things, I have less big things to tackle. How's that for a wisdom nugget?

This may seem odd, but last week I took a night off from work to collect myself. I was feeling very overwhelmed and disorganized. Now- I'm sure some of you can identify that when your handbag looks like the county dump inside, it is a red flag that you are approaching wicked, emotional heifer status. Every time I looked, it seemed to be getting fatter and fatter. I had so many receipts and snippets of paper that I couldn't find my money or other necessary things. I Couldn't even get the bag to close. I must have looked like a travelling pack rat. It dawned on me, that I was in dire need of help when I went to the bank with my husband. When the banker asked for my ID, I had to unload my trunk on his desk, whilst things like pantyliners, and crumpled up tissues, and empty on-the-go baby formula packets popped out onto his desk. I know my husband was mortified.

How did it get this bad? Not allowing myself enough time to do anything. Not caring. Sleep deprivation. Stress. Ironically, the worse it got, the more stressed I became.

So, anyway (yes there is more)-

On my special night off, I spent THREE HOURS cleaning my trough of a handbag. I organized everything in it, then determined what got trashed and what was needed. I found about $10 worth of coin on the bottom, about $20 in singles all wrinkled up. After I was done, I tackled my wallet. What a task that was. I didn't realize how many unnecessary things were jammed in there.

I am happy to report, that my beautiful, favorite handbag has gone back to it's normal size, my wallet has assumed it's slim silhouette, and I can locate everything with ease. It has to be at least 5 lbs lighter. My whole world seems more organized. Everything has order; home, car, work.

I now see that my handbag, is life central for me. It's the nerve center of my daily activities. Since I am constantly on the go, it is always in use for one thing or another. It never occurred to me that it was so critical to my own well-being.


Assalamu alaykum one and all.

Inspired by the most humble and honest thoughts by Sister Fuzzy http://asks-muslimah.blogspot.com/2009/03/age-old-debate_26.html , I have the urge to share my own thoughts and feelings about being Muslim, observing hijab, and the impact it has on my daily life....

I am a revert to Islam since August 2005. I was born in and have lived in the USA my whole life. While there is no doubt that there is a lasting western influence in my lifestyle, I was pretty much modestly fashionable. Being a fuller figure/well nourished woman, I was more than aware of my body type and always wanted to look feminine, yet appropriate. I enjoyed getting my hair done, wearing nail polish, and generally took pride in my appearance. I felt lovely and soft.

Since wearing hijab, many blessings have come into my life; a thriving relationship with my husband, a beautiful little boy, a promotion at work, and people accepting for who I am and what I believe in, rather than what I look like. This is the ultimate freedom. Will life always be this easy? Inshaallah- but if not, my hijab will remind me that my faith is more important than anything, and like all things, doing them with GOD in my life will certainly make them worthwhile and ultimately to my benefit, whether it be in this life or the next.

Since wearing hijab, I've noticed that I do not like my appearance at home, when I am not wearing it. My hair is matted to my head to the point where I can't even style it without washing it all over again. I look like a pathetic drowned water rat. There is no recovery from a look this bad. Honestly, by the end of a day off ( I am only home 2 nights a week, working full-time evenings)- the last thing I feel like doing is re-styling my locks or putting on make-up to spice things up. I know in my heart, in the recesses of my soul, that my husband, unquestionably loves me and is indeed attracted to me. The problem is that I am not attracted to me. It has gotten worse since the birth of my 11 month son. Now, I truly do not have a minute to spare without sacrificing something else that needs to be done. Ive manage to carve out about an hour at the end of my night (1 to 2am) where I just do "me" things....read the news, pluck the brows, take a long shower or blog a bit. That's it.

I also feel frumpy. I don't feel that my current wardrobe is very fashionable, because I believe I should keep things simple. Is that an excuse? Sound like one. Do I have the energy to put something together that is cuter? Not really. I don't wear an abaya; I am just not comfortable with it. I do own a few beautiful ones, and wear them on special occasions. Maybe someday I will be willing to wear abays, but for now it takes me deep into the discomfot zone. Every spring and summer I painfully hunt mainstream clothing stores for items that are appropriate for hijab. Sometimes I get lucky, and sometimes I don't. I get frustrated and depressed. I feel like I wear the same things over and over again, just in different colors! I have found a few lovely, long tunics at Shukr, and I have a plethora of long skirts. This spring I should have a greater variety of things to wear.

Going to work is a breeze- I wear scrubs and a lab coat down to my knees. I don't have to worry about coverage, as it is madatory for us to wear these things. They are actually quite comfy, and very loose fitting. I like to match my Al Amira undercaps to my scrubs LOL. Now that I am verbalizing these things, it has dawned on me that A) I am perpetually exahusted and nothing is appealing when you're tired B) I work five nights per week, and really only worry about weekend wardrobes which might be part of the reason I am lacking in this department. I dont get dressed up often enough.

How do I get to any resemblance of my former self? Is it even possible? I suppose someday inshaallah my work schedule will ease, and there will be time. For now- these days.......there are only two things I can guarantee when it comes to self caring; #1 showering #2 good oral hygiene and a basic skin care regimen. That's what gets my free time!

After writing this, I don't feel so bad.....

Oh yeah, I have a wedding to go to in July. This should send me in a wicked fit trying to find something appropriate and nice. Wish me luck. Better yet, wish my husband luck. Poor unsuspecting soul of the "I have nothing to wear" wilderbeast that is about to rear it's ugly head.

Mother's Day: To Celebrate or Not?

Whilst commenting on Umm Salihah's blog, I realized it was too long and that it would be more appropriate to just continue my thoughts here- so welcome, and thanks for reading.

Regarding Mothering Day/Mother's Day:
It is a personal and emotional controversy with me. With Islamic evidence presented, part of me still doesn't see a problem with this celebration, since my intention is not to honor a Greek or oman goddess or take part in a religious ceremony, however being Muslim and visually (hijabi) Muslim, I feel i have a certain responsibility to set an example and to be consistent.

I appreciate my Mom on a daily basis. In the past I have adored celebrating her life on Mother's Day, and I relished in the joy she exuded when she was treated like an absolute queen by our family on this day! Waiting an entire year to pull out the stops made it special and exciting.

Regardless of why I was brought up to celebrate Mother's Day, and it's origins; despite fatwas, and scholarly opinions on whether it's viewed as a shirk innovation- my feelings haven't changed. A month before Mother's Day, my siblings and I would secretly start growing our Marigold and African Violet flower seeds in empty coffee cans. Painted macaroni necklaces were in progress, our hand prints in plaster were a right of passage, and of course, one of us made a pig sty out of the kitchen trying to bake a cake. Let's not forget the original poem chock full of misspellings and atrocious grammar. My father would give her rose garden extra special attention and even add new buds. He did his best to please her within their means. All this, for the love of Mommy. I still want to burst into confetti on Mother's day for all the memories and love she gave us. For all the pain and sacrifice she endured for us. For all the penniless moments, multiple-jobs-with-no-day-off moments, and scary moments. For holding her head up high during the darkest hour moments, and all of her successful and and accomplished moments.

Not partaking in this day does not mean I love her less than I did yesterday. It does not mean that she is not a phenomenal woman. Not celebrating would mean my faith is stronger than I previously thought. Not observing would mean that I truly believe any sacrifice or hardship in this life will be rewarded in Jannah. I imagine that my mother would agree that faith in God is more important than anything else in this life.

So- you ask, what does iMuslimah want from us? I'll tell you and then some. I want your deepest internal wisdom on the subject (pretty please), especially if you are a recovering (Muslim) Mother's Day or Birthday junkie. I want to know, stated as simply as possible, what motivated you to give up non-religious holidays and how you changed your feelings. If you are somewhere int he middle like me, I would like to hear about that too.

Jazzakullah Khair,


Yes, You Are Seeing This Correctly

Yes, Ladies- it's real.

This sign is posted on a state owned beach upon which a national landmark is built. How is this fair? The attraction in the background received hundreds of tourists weekly during spring and summer. Unsuspecting visitors (such as myself) may walk the entire boardwalk to the ocean front not realizing what awaits them; people. Yes, lots and lots of men and women who like to tan their bits, frolic in the sea, and play volleyball- completely naked. And I have news for you- they aren't all spring chickens in their prime.

How I wish this wasn't so. How I wish there was a beach for religiously modest or just very conservative families; where clothing is not optional, thongs and speedos are a no-no, and our children could enjoy God's splendor without being subjected to haram habits. I know that in life, my son will be faced with many choices and decision, and that I cannot completely shield him from indecency, but this is where I draw the line. It's a painful one. I miss the beach. I want to build sand castles with my son and husband. I want to teach him to body surf someday. I want him to splash around in the surf and collect seashells. I suppose these joyful activities will wait until we go to my husband's home in N. Africa, where hijab is observed. I am looking forward to this inshaAllah.

I know that what awaits us in paradise inshaAllah, will be far more spectacular than anything we can experience on earth..........


Stick a fork in me, I am finished. I cannot find a template that really suits me. This is the last attempt for now. I loved the blue jeans, but it was a little hard to read. This one is much easier.

That said, I'm about to do some more baby proofing. We need to move some furniture around to make a better play area for my little Huggles. Hopefully I will be able to get to the toy store today, and get him safe toy chest for all his things. He loves to dig through his things, it keeps him busy for hours. For now, his toys are in a basket, and he takes them out, then puts them back in- over and over again. It's too cute.

My PC that I use soley for editing and storing photos took a dirt nap last night. I went out and bought a portable hard drive to back up my photos (all 14,000+ of them), and when I went to actually do it, my computer would not start. I think the power supply in the tower died. I'm totally annoyed, because now I will have to pay someone to back up my hard drive.

Lets not even talk about the fact that I have my photoshop proggie on the dead puter that is only for XP- and this laptop is vista. That was a dowload also. Currently I'm downloading trials of newer photoshop products to try on vista. They are super expensive. CS4 is about $700 USD. Im thinking of buying an older version of CS2 on e-bay for $150 USD. I'm so bummed out. I just took a bunch of new photos of Huggles with my new lens, and now I cant upload them and process them!

Moving on- I hope to get my hair done tonight. HijabiApprentice I know you will be appalled, but I have not had my hair cut since huggles was born, nor have I colored it. Four inches of grey roots (attractive). My sister is a hairdresser/make up artist, so inshAllah she will cut, color and highlight tonight. I need a pick me up. Feeling like dirty spittied up dish rag.

That's all for now. More later.

Ciao Bellas.


I'm about to loose my MIND with this bloggy template XML crap.

What do you think? Should I keep it? Is it easy to read? I hate busy blogs that make my eyes bug out. I love blue jeans. I love my baby boy in blue jeans. Too cute.

Having trouble customizing. I'll have to ponder this tomorrow. Feel free to leave advice.

Shukran ;)

I've Been Tagged!

Thanks http://hijabiapprentice.blogspot.com/ :) Back atcha bewty!

The rules:

1. Admit one thing you feel awful about (involving being a mom). Once you have written it down, you are no longer allowed to feel bad. Remember you are a good mom!

2. Remind yourself that you ARE a good mom, list 7 things you love about your kids, you love doing with your kids, or that your kids love about you.

3. Send this to 5 other moms of the year that deserve a reminder that they too are the best moms that they can be. Remember to send them a note letting them know you have selected them, and also add a link to your post that directs people back to the person who nominated you!


One thing I feel awful about: Working full-time. It is not a choice. Alhamdulillah I have a good career that is rewarding. We are saving to buy a home inshaAllah. We are also both working on our education, and also saving for iBaby's education. I know that in time, I will be able to slow down. When my little man looks at me with his big liquid brown eyes, it slays me to walk away. I don't know that writing this down will make me feel better, but it's worth a shot.

Seven things I love about my son: This is tough, I have more than seven. I'll try to keep it brief.

1) the thighs, THE THIGHS! Oh they are sublime and chubby.

2) I love watching my son when he is *busy*. It is the cutest thing ever. He becomes
engrossed in something (i.e. toy phone, stackable cups, etc...) and won't look at me.

3)I adore watching my son and my husband interact with each other. They have such a
unique and beautiful relationship.

4)When he is excited, instead of screaming while exhaling......he screams while inhaling. It
is the most hilarious sound. Especially in the middle of the night when he thinks it's play
time. The minute he lays eyes on my husband, he starts making this noise, because
he knows he is going to have fun.

5)I love feeding him his bottle. He just turns in to a super-mush-love-angel-baby and
stares at me intently. When he drifts off to sleep, he fights it, as if he is checking to see
if I am still there.

6)I love playing peek-a-boo with him. He cracks up every time. He loves any kind of
7)I adore shopping for him. I find joy in purchasing even the most mundane things like diapers, wipes, bath prodcuts, clothing and shoes. It helps me realize that together, my husband and I can provide everything he needs, through the grace and mercy of Allah swt.
Overall, I love the joy and happiness he brings our families. He is loved infinitely, and cared for more than he will ever comprehend until inshallah he is father someday.
I would like to tag HijabiApprentice & UmmSalihah but they have already been tagged. In addition, I will tag: http://americanmuslimawriter.blogspot.com/ and http://motherofabdu.blogspot.com/ !