Redeeming My Pizzazz

I have been on a blogging hiatus after Ramadan concluded. To be honest, I’ve been craving to write but my listlessness has gotten better of me. I was going through my earlier write-ups and it struck me how much I enjoyed blogging, writing content and articles for the e-mag. The lazy stupor seemed to have hit me hard. For reasons I can’t fathom, I have been feeling unproductive. Which has led me to shun eating healthy, write less and be tardy overall, even though I have tried so much to wave it off. I guess you just have to let phases like these pass and get over the cloudiness that mars your good thoughts and efficiency.

My sister is on a visit to India. It’s pathetic how less we get to see each other since she has gone to U.A.E. I plan to ask her to co-ordinate her office leaves around my visits to Mumbai to our parents. At least this way we can be with each other for longer times during her stays to India. 

This time she came for just a few hours to my place for lunch yesterday and rushed back to Mumbai to spend time with mum. She and bro-in-law have come to India to attend a wedding in their family. It was so thoughtful of them to bring goodies for kids, hubster and me.



Some luxury shower gel, warm oil, body mist, those adorable mugs, a small diary with pen, some innerwear (not in the pic) and colorful measurement cups for baking.

Chocolate-covered dates with almonds for hubster.

 A haul of chocolate for kids (half of this has been gobbled up already๐Ÿ˜’)

Along with some stationary to keep them busy for a few days.

I have been hunting for my mojo back and though I still feel befuddled, I am going to let the pending works, product reviews and article writing jolt me back into doing my best, in sha Allah.

Do you have days such as these that make you want to give up doing stuff that you love? How do you cope with them?

I’m excited about a guest post that I’ve been offered to write. It’s for one of my favourite bloggers. Alhamdulilah for opportunities like these โ˜บ

Leaving now just to see you very soon, in sha Allah.

Au revoir ๐Ÿ’Ÿ

Blogger turned E-authorย 

Pure serendipity led me towards affiliating with Allarsh, a women’s e-mag. I couldn’t share a better rapport with it’s founder. A sweet and brilliant mum of a baby daughter, we clicked instantly and she graciously welcomed me into the fraternity of her e-mag authors.

For the write-up, I have brainstormed to find ideas that would benefit mums to keep their kids entertained indoors since the weather is drenching outside now. It led me to write on a gleeful game – Treasure Hunting. Hoping that it helps the readers enjoy the present weather with their kids even staying indoors โ˜บ

Tap here to float towards my write-up. Remember, your feedback is precious to me ๐Ÿ’–

Fancy Shopping at an Online Hijab Boutique?

I have not always been a hijabi. To cover my head was an option kept open to me by my parents. They never forced me and when I grew into my teens, I willingly chose to cover my hair with headscarves whenever I went out. This was moreso because my best friend was a hijabi and we had an Islamic environment in schools in U.A.E. How fondly I remember those days!

Later, when I came to Pune to recieve graduation, the environment here did little to remind me of covering my head and I dismissed wearing hijab. For me, it was just what Muslimahs had to do and I didn’t feel I was ‘there’ yet. The beautiful and important concept of donning hijab was lost on me.

It was immediately after our wedding that hubster expressed he’d like to see me wear burkha. And though, I wasn’t too keen, comfortable or prepared to cover up with a complete black garment, I agreed to adapt to it. (The things you do in the just-married phase! *eye roll*)

To put it all briefly though, today I can speak of myself as a hijab-lover. (I’m reserving a detailed post on my hijab story for later, in sha Allah). I see hijab in a positive light. Most importantly, I love the peace that comes with knowing that I am obeying Allah and living the way that is loved by Him. When you go against Allah’s commandment, you go against nature or innate disposition towards virtue and that unease penetrates every part of your life.

I am moving towards reviewing now. I just felt it important to write a small background on my journey with wearing hijabs and covering up.

Hubster relented and clicked a few snaps for me to post with this write-up. He finds it funny when I pose for a click. I agree with him, I am not a good poser ๐Ÿ™ˆ. However, I’m hoping this video gives a clear image of the modish abaya that I received from My Batua

When I was sent an abaya by the online store My Batua, I was pleased because:

๐Ÿ”ผThis is the first time I’d wear a non-black abaya.

๐Ÿ”ผI love the color blocks of monochrome in the abaya. It lends it a mimimalist and stylish look.

๐Ÿ”ผThe fabric is soft and falls well on the body.

๐Ÿ”ผ The neckline is round and the front opens easily with tick buttons sewn.

๐Ÿ”ผ The sleeves are bell-shaped. I love that in an abaya. Gives it a kimono kind of look.

๐Ÿ”ผ There are pockets on both sides. (Important storage place for a mum when outdoors!)

๐Ÿ”ผ The delivery of the abaya was quick.

๐Ÿ”ผ The size fit well according to the measurements I had provided.

I was displeased with:

๐Ÿ”ผ The fabric of the hijab. I found it too thick for head covering. Within a few minutes I started feeling stuffy. I guess I’m going to pair the abaya with another lighter hijab whenever I decide to wear it.

Nevertheless, I surfed through their website and found that you can be spoilt for choices! They offer jilbabs, burqinis, cardigans, salwar suits and hijab accessories for women’s wear and also have a grand collection for men’s wear.

My Batua is a must check out online store for all your modest wear necessities.

Two Of A Kind (Recipes!)

It’s Ramadan. And though it is a month of fasting and abstaining from feasting, I always find myself scrambling for recipes to make at Iftar (time when we break our fast). While I usually fix meals with less oil and more veggies and chicken for myself, I prepare fried food, desserts and gravies with rotis for hubster, mum-in-law and kids.

Not long ago, I’d cooked chicken and veggies using honey and mustard sauce (purely an inspiration that arose from the need of eating healthy). Also sometime later, when I was in Mumbai with my parents, I’d baked a choco-chip cake in honour of my brother-in-law who’d come home for the first time after my sister and he got wedlocked. Since I’d posted about both the delicacies on my Instagram page, I was requested to also write the recipes. I’d promised a blogpost and here goes the modus operandi of what I’d cooked up. โ˜บ


Chocolate-chips Cake

Ingredients:

โ–ถ2/3 cup butter or pure ghee

โ–ถ 1.5 cup sugar

โ–ถ 3 eggs

โ–ถ 1 and 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

โ–ถ 3/4 cup whole wheat flour

โ–ถ 2 and a 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

โ–ถ 1 cup milk

โ–ถ 1 and a 1/2 tsps vanilla essence

โ–ถ 1 cup chocolate chips

Method:

๐Ÿ”˜ Preheat the oven to 180ยฐC.

๐Ÿ”˜ Grease the cake pan.

๐Ÿ”˜ In a large mixing bowl, cream together butter and sugar.

๐Ÿ”˜ Beat in the eggs.

๐Ÿ”˜ In another bowl, sift together the flours and baking powder. Add this alternately with the milk to the creamed mixture.

๐Ÿ”˜ Stir in the vanilla essence.

๐Ÿ”˜ Chop the chocolate-chips coarsely, and add to the batter.

๐Ÿ”˜ Pour the batter into prepared pan and bake for 30 minutes or until knife inserted in the middle comes out clean.

๐Ÿ”˜ I served the cake with butterscotch icecream (store bought). It took the deliciousness to another level โ˜บ

Chicken in Honey and Mustard Sauce

Ingredients:

โ–ถOne breast piece of chicken, chopped into cubes

โ–ถ Veggies, diced (I used capsicum, tomatoes, onions and mushrooms)

โ–ถ Salt 1/2 tsp

โ–ถ Pepper 1/4 tsp

โ–ถ Mustard Sauce – 1 tblspn

โ–ถ Honey – 1 tblspn

โ–ถ Garlic Paste – 2 tsp

โ–ถ Dry Basil – 1 tsp

โ–ถ Coconut Oil – 1 tblspn

Method:

๐Ÿ”˜ Marinate chicken in salt, pepper, mustard sauce, dry basil, honey and garlic paste.

๐Ÿ”˜ In a pan, heat coconut oil.

๐Ÿ”˜ Stir fry the veggies, adding a pinch each of salt & pepper.

๐Ÿ”˜ Add the chicken pieces. Mix everything well and cook till done.

๐Ÿ”˜ Sprinkle chopped spring onion leaves or coriander before serving.

๐Ÿ”˜ Serve with rotis or brown bread.


Happy baking and cooking. Remember me and my family in your exclusive prayers.

Prends soin โš˜


My Friend Takes The Entrepreneurial Plunge

Few people in life connect to us instantly – sans time, sans words, san many rendezvous. I have known Hilarious (I love keeping pseudo-names and this friend of mine is terribly witty!) since more than two years now and can count on one hand the number of times I have met her but whenever we catch up it feels like we just met yesterday. She is a beautiful soul and I was overjoyed when she told me about the launch of her boutique this year. I still remember the time when the idea of an abaya boutique was a baby concept in her mind. And, today, she runs it like a boss โ˜บ Ma sha Allah.

Ramadan was soon to begin this year and I wished to see her inaugurated business before it became my pipe dream. Hence I took my mum along to visit Hilarious’ abaya store. To be bluntly honest, I least expected the boutique to be so posh. For explainable reasons, of course. One, because I was expecting work to be still in progress and two, because in my mind I didn’t think you could recreate an international sort of ambience while in India. I was proven wrong because as soon as we stepped in, my mind said, “Wow, Ma sha Allah!”. Feeling instantly at ease as we entered, I could see that a lot of hardwork and research had been put into composing and organising a chรฌc and stylish emsemble of abayas, jilbabs, hijabs, attars (non-alcoholic perfumes) and hijab accessories. I felt reminded of boutiques I have been to when we stayed in UAE.

I was impressed to see how staunchly Hilarious is supported by her family and husband. I can’t help but mention that her mum is one of my favourite people in the world – a modest, intellectual and noble lady (attributes that are so rare to find these days.)

It was generous and thoughtful of Hilarious to gift me a set of two beauteous stoles, hijab cap, brooch and sleeves (in case my abayas are short-sleeved), wishing me a happy Ramadan. I have never worn shades such as these and was pleased to see the fabrics feel luxurious to my touch.

Some of my favourite cover-ups from the store are:

You can find some useful videos uploaded on YouTube, some exhibiting tutorials on styling hijabs and a few about the abaya studio.

You can view the videos here:

Al Amira Abaya Studio 

Al Amira Abaya Studio 2

Al Amira Abaya Studio 3

This one by ‘HungryZeen’

If you reside in Pune and are looking out for Hijabwear, you can avail Ramadan offers that are up fo grab at Al Amira Abaya Studio. They also ship all over India and abroad. You can get in touch with them for more information, of course.

I pray that Allah blesses Hilarious with immense ease and success in her chosen endeavour. Ameen ๐Ÿ˜Š