26 April 2018

preschool graduation

at five, the twins have now officially finished with preschool, and will start grade one in june! wow. how time flies. when i think of them starting playgroup, so many milestones ago, they seem so grown up now.

attending their preschool graduation was fun. all the kids were so happy to wear their tiny caps and gowns, waving their rolled up certificates!

the twins have learnt and grown a lot, especially this past year. i am particularly happy with a's progress; he has become so much more confident and open since being separated from his twin. i hope their next school year is just as rewarding and fun for them, inshallah!

reading challenge

for the past few years, i have been using goodreads to record my reading activity. i have also been taking the goodreads reading challenge of reading a certain number of books annually. 

today i came across this different kind of reading challenge, which totally piqued my interest. several years ago i had decided to read only books by authors of color, to broaden my horizons, as well as do my tiny bit in supporting their work. that was definitely a good experience, and i think this reading challenge of choosing particular books will also be fun and interesting. i haven't decided yet which prompts i will choose, but here are some that i like:

-a book set in a country that fascinates you
-a book published the year you graduated
-a book by two authors
-a book set at sea
-a book with alliteration in the title

for more prompts, and a group to join, visit popsugar.

05 April 2018

still me

i have just finished reading two lovely books, which makes me so happy. not just that the books were good, but that i was able to read two books in a row, that were just what i wanted to read. in fact, this is probably what makes the experience even sweeter; it is not always easy to find the perfect book to read for a particular moment!

first i read 'the one in a million boy' by monica wood, and i totally wondered why i had never heard of it before, or seen it on any goodreads/amazon recommendation lists! i loved reading about the boy, who is not named throughout the novel, as well as the 104-year-old woman he was helping. it reminded me a lot of britt-marie was here (without backman's humour). these days i find myself enjoying reading about old people.. (enough said).

immediately afterwards i started reading still me by jojo moyes, the third in the louisa clark series. i enjoyed it far more than after you, which i found a little sad and wallowing. me before you is still the best, but perhaps that is simply because it was the introduction of louisa and will, two fascinating characters. aside from the novel itself, i like the name: still me. the themes of immigrants, of not belonging, of always being torn between different homes, identities and cultures, fluctuating between different selves; these are all aspects that i have felt pretty much most of the past decade, in varying degrees. most recently, i have lamented to friends that my kids will never know the me that they knew, the me of cairo, the me of ahrc. for the twins, i am just mumma, which is an identity built recently, and devoid of so much of my past lives..

their response, and louisa's in 'still me', reminds me that i will always be 'me', made up of many different facets. and that i can be whichever me i want!

15 March 2018

twins' first school picnic and my ferrero rocher shake

the twins went on their first school picnic/outing yesterday, and they had a ball, alhumdolillah. they were excited and looking forward to it for days, and they were up instantly yesterday morning, all ready to go (if only they would wake up like that everyday). it was their first time to be out without us for most of the day, but i am sure they hardly noticed. m said he had a great 'adventure' :) may they continue to find adventure in all of life's moments. 

a left his water bottle somewhere, and he came and told me that 'please pray i get it back'. i love the fact that he thought of prayer. i encourage them to give thanks for their day before they sleep.. i will try tweaking this now by getting them to find one specific thing they are thankful for each night..

their day-long outing meant that i was able to have a leisurely and scrumptious lunch (the highlight being a super rich ferrero rocher shake- i am still drooling!) with two lovely friends; alhumdolillah! it was a lovely time, and will most likely be my highlight of the month :)

goodbye, vitamin

i finished reading rachel khong's goodbye, vitamin. it was nice, a light, short read. the writing style was very stream-of-consciousness, which was a refreshing difference from the usual beginning-middle-end novels. also, i was particularly heartened to read about a 30-something character who is as clueless as a 20-something. she does not have a marriage, home, career and two kids. as someone who is forever bemused that i am no longer 23, and constantly wondering what i have accomplished in my twenties and thirties, it was nice to read about someone smart and good, but who doesn't have life all figured out and wrapped up in shiny paper.

09 March 2018

twins catch up

i am not sure when this happened exactly, but the twins are little people now, with distinct personalities. a few months ago, m told me he did not want to dress like a anymore. i was heartbroken. together with the emergence of distinct personalities comes severe sibling rivalry. one twin is clearly more dominating and assertive, which works in his favour. as a parent, i am left reeling, wondering how to protect and empower the more passive sibling. oh, the curve keeps getting steeper!

i am very thankful that i separated them in school this year; i can see so much improvement in a. according to m's teacher, his academic development is progressing in proportion to his mischief! 

they started madressah this year, and they seem to be enjoying it and doing well. when i went to pick them up on their first day, their teacher said their english was excellent; still not sure if that was a compliment or not! now of course they speak in ld there. they have many friends in the masjid now, which makes going there a little daunting for me! until last ramadan, people were still telling me how good and quiet the twins were at the masjid.. unfortunately, all good things come to an end. now, everyone is surprised at how much masti (mischief) they get up to, sigh. 

their hifz (memorizing the quran) progress is also outstanding, mashallah. 

overall, they are healthy, happy and energetic boys. i wish for quiet at times, and wonder at their selective hearing, but otherwise, alhumdolillah. my next target: making them eat on their own, inshallah!

08 March 2018

time in!

several months ago, i was shocked that i hadn't blogged in over a year! i went through all my posts on the twins, and i was so happy that i had some record of their growing up and my parenting journey. i immediately resolved to start posting again, so that i could read and reminisce as they grew older. 

and of course, months passed and i still didn't get around to blogging.

today is a new day however, and hopefully, i will be able to periodically keep up with the posts. there are so many things i want to say, to record, so that i can look them up later, so that the twins will have some notion of their early years.

i am currently reading goodbye, vitamin, which includes diary remnants a dad kept of his daughter growing up, which he shares with her when she is an adult:
Today, while I was trying to teach you to swim, you asked how deep the pool was. When I said four feet, you looked incredulous, and said, Whose feet!
...We'd asked you to be polite, so you said, "No more please, it's horrible thank you."
i want to be able to do that too. (i hope this blog is still around at that time!!) the things the twins say are simply marvelous, and i wish i could record all of them!