Baby Fat

I was listening to the radio the other day and there was a guest speaking about a Fat Acceptance Movement.  She spoke about how diets don’t work, how society judges fat people (she rejects the term ‘overweight’) as lazy and disgusting, and how people are afraid of and feel terrible if they’re not sporting a rock-hard body. Although I didn’t agree with everything she said, there was one point that resonated with me: it was her mantra to stop fighting your body and start accepting it.  This rem … [Read more...]

Running Shoes

The first thing I noticed were the white running shoes, propped up on the pillow. As I lugged my own luggage onto the train, grabbed the four seater so as to secure space for my computer, binder and thinking, I quickly glanced at the scene to my right. Four seniors on a road trip it seemed, enjoying snacks, scenery and each other.Turning to the task before me, I was determined to make use of the 2 hour train ride ahead.The second time I turned to my right, I couldn’t look away. Nothing r … [Read more...]

Soccer Mama

I’m a soccer mom, I admit it. It’s ironic really, since I hated soccer in high school. I remember playing defense and feeling so bored with the game.Now, thanks to my boys I not only cheer them on from the sidelines of their games, I also enjoy professional soccer on television. I’ve become a great fan of the game.Zayd started learning soccer skills at age 4 and Muneeb joined in the fun when he was just a toddler. My husband, Yusuf, grew up loving soccer so the three of them would kick th … [Read more...]

Investing in Ourselves

Laws of nature and our common sense tell us that if one constantly takes from a particular source without replenishing it, the source would eventually dry up, becoming empty and hollow. As mothers, though, we rarely apply this law to ourselves, probably because we don’t have the time or the luxury to do so.We are overwhelmed and preoccupied with the tarbiyah of children; tending to our everyday duties and errands; managing our homes; handling the unexpected circumstances that arise; and for m … [Read more...]

American Feminism

Give me a break. Sometimes I get so infuriated as an American Muslim woman. I am constantly bombarded with notions that I am oppressed because my religion asks me to behave and appear modestly. And it is not just that these notions are wrong – because Muslim men are asked the same thing and it is people and culture, not Islam, that oppresses women (something here isn’t fully clear).But what really irks me is how the “modern American woman” is flaunted in my face as the example of women’s libe … [Read more...]

No Regrets

My husband has a wonderful trait-once he decides on something and goes through with it, he never regrets it. No matter how nagging I can get, asking him if perhaps we should have looked around for a better deal, perhaps we should have waited, perhaps.... He tells me, 'Khalass, it's over and I don't regret it.' And I love this trait about him, because it helps me feel better about some decisions I feel I may have forced him into!But a few months ago, I did something different. Something that … [Read more...]

Losing the First Tooth

It was just after lunch yesterday when the announcement came…..”Mum look my tooth is moving!” Acting like a typical ‘mother in denial’ I asked….”did you hit your mouth anywhere?” Of course the answer was no and I should have been prepared for this, after all just a couple months before, at his dental checkup, we stared in disbelief at the x-ray revealing new teeth hidden beneath his gums, waiting to make their debut.My 6 ½ year old son was losing the first of his baby teeth. He was excited, a … [Read more...]

Swimming Reflections

Goggles on, goggles off.  Close the life jacket, now open it - we don't need it.  Uh oh, potty!  Baby's cold, take her out of the water and wrap her up.  "Mama!  Look at me!"Ahhh, a nice relaxing trip to the pool.Did you ever notice how many bags we moms carry at one time?  Aside from jackets, strollers and snacks, that is.  How many arms and eyes do we actually have at our disposal?  How do we really manage so many things all at once?What will we do when the craziness of caring for o … [Read more...]

Calm Me Down

I came across a tip in Screamfree Parenting by Hal Runkel that really clicked with my often-defunct brain (I lost a mixing bowl for 20 minutes last night—with the beaten eggs, sugar, and baking soda inside). Anyway, I'm hoping it will resound with you as it did for me.When we yell at our kids, it doesn’t matter what we say. What we are really saying is, “CALM ME DOWN!” Your child will then rush to oblige—or not!—in order to stop you from throwing a fit, not because she wants to do the right t … [Read more...]

The List

Abu Said Al-Khudri narrated, "Once Allah's prophet went out to the Musalla (to offer the prayer) on Eid-al-Adha or Al-Fitr prayer. He passed by the women and said, "O women! Give charity, as I have seen that the majority of the dwellers of Hell-fire were from you." They asked, "Why is it so, Oh Allah's prophet?" He replied, "You curse frequently and are ungrateful to your husbands." (Al Bukhari Book 6, Hadith 301)When I first heard this hadith I freaked out. It’s easy to get trapped in the u … [Read more...]