Saving For Hajj

“Pilgrimage to the House is a duty unto Allah for mankind, or him who can find a way to perform it.” (The Holy Qur’an, 3:97)Hajj is the fifth pillar of Islam, and thus an obligation on all who are capable. Going on hajj, though, can seem cost-prohibitive for many. In browsing various hajj packages, I’ve seen prices ranging from $5000 to $8000 per person. That’s a lot of money! But by setting goals and implementing a budgeting system that includes saving monthly for the trip, this goal can be … [Read more...]

Daughters of Mine

You poor dears.Bored of meetings in spare office spaces instead of play dates. You sit on my knees while I type emails and I bribe you with Sunmaid raisin boxes and cheerios for a few more minutes to finish up this or that. You become resigned to my requests for "five more minutes," and so often I realize I take advantage of a toddler's patience.As a MAS Youth worker, I get fellow activists without children sometimes coming up to me and expressing admiration at how we moms manage to stay … [Read more...]

The Car Ride

The Quran is filled with many stories that teach us valuable morals. It’s nice when parents can be creative and diligent in connecting the lessons and beauty of the Quran to children. In our family, we look for “teachable” moments to share and explore Quranic lessons. A few weeks ago, I had an interesting car ride…I was driving my 5 year old son to school and he said to me, “Mom, I’m nervous about my presentation today.” I paused for a moment and wondered why he was nervous. He was excited ab … [Read more...]

Only A Sister

Who would bring meals through sunshine or rain,Who would bring meals through comfort or pain,When you’re down with something called morning sickness,You vomit so much you’re almost insane?Only a sister.You’re so heavy you can’t even walk,You can’t bend down to put on your sock,Doctor said you can’t leave the house,Just sit quiet as a little mouse,You know how hard that is, Doc?Who would cook for you in a state like this?Only a sister.Your new house is a total dis … [Read more...]

Mo’min

“Mama, you remember Mo’min don’t you?”  Zayd asks me with wide eyes one night before we pray ‘Isha.“Yeah,” I nod as I recall the image of the well-mannered, pleasant boy who was Zayd’s friend in elementary school.  He moved to another school after a couple of years and we only saw him and his family occasionally after that at local community events.“Well he goes to my high school now but Mama, he’s different now.  I mean really different.”I look at Zayd’s unusual facial expression.  I … [Read more...]

Who Made This?

My daughter often reminds me that sometimes adults think too much for their own good.“Prove that God exists.” This challenge is laid before those who believe in Allah. Many have, but no hard and fast proof exists. If it did exist, belief in, and acceptance of, Allah (swt) would not be rewarded and considered morally good. This is why belief is no longer accepted once the major signs of the Day of Judgment begin – when physical proof of the existence of Allah is made clear. And if there was “p … [Read more...]

Greeting Strangers on a Sunny Day

A few days ago the temperature was spring-like, so the girls and I decided to go biking. Well, that is not totally truthful. They rode their bikes while I hiked behind them. We chose a challenging route that required lots of energy and a positive attitude.Along the way, as our smiles began to turn into tears, a red minivan gave us a friendly honk, and the driver waved at us and kept on going. I waved back, wondering who the driver may be. Could he or she be someone I know or could they be a … [Read more...]

Breaking Life Into Little Pieces

I always thought I had to find my one thing, the pursuit or career through which I would make my contribution to Islam, society, or humanity. Taught by motivational lecturers and life-planning books that a jack-of-all-trades would never make a difference, I thought that to give my life meaning I had to excel phenomenally at one thing. I panicked in college as I looked for the perfect formula—the field that I liked, full of potential, filled with passion, that I could realistically do with kids a … [Read more...]

While You Are Not Watching

This was the title of an email I received few days ago. Basically, it mentioned that kids learn more from what they see you do than from what you instruct them to do. When I read this email, I remembered my 12 year old son's words, "Mama, when you grow old I'll take good care of you like you do with Geddo (grandfather)". My eyes filled with tears and I was thankful to Allah.SubhanAllah!!!! I have the honor to care for my 80 year old father after he suffered a stroke. After my son's words, I … [Read more...]

Rantings- One Mother’s Way Out

It’s rather bizarre how most of the thoughts that run through my head these days are like a rant. A long-winded rant. A rant that ranges from my latest obsession with schooling options, to philosophical thoughts about motherhood and sacrifice, to aging parents, and finally around to getting some brown colored shoes. What’s wrong with me? Why have I become so incoherent – in my own thoughts?! I feel the onset of dementia sometimes.It’s no doubt, motherhood has made me a worrywart, about everyt … [Read more...]