School. Homeschool. Unschool.

Every time we come back from a vacation, for weeks we are basking in the memories that were created. Endless discussions about the places that we visited, food that we ate, incidents that happened and even about our trips to Sainsburys and Seven Eleven. Then slowly, almost at the tortoise speed the vacation starts to seem like a far away memory. Everyday happenings. Homework. Nano house visits. Cousins playtime. A trip to the mall. And more bring us back into the routine. And we start mentally preparing for our next time out.

This time around though, for some odd reason getting out of the vacation mode just seems so tiresome. Even though the routine is back with a vengeance. But us 4 are still daydreaming and night dreaming about the holiday. I think alot also has to do with the fact that the girls are now acquainted with terms like Campervan and Caravan (thanks to Peppe Pig). Every evening we NEED to have a discussion about why school is important and why we cant just go buy a van and go globetrotting. Its difficult to explain to them that with our green passport we will barely get anywhere. But it is harder to explain why going to school is important.

Suddenly, there is quite a bit of discussion on homeschooling. On the whatsapp groups. The facebook closed groups and also between me and the hubby. Hubby is totally convinced on homeschooling front, but lets be honest he’s a dreamer and a half. I will admit that the idea of homeschooling sometimes is very very enticing. The thought that our school can start at 10 am and we can lie on the colorful hammock and learn about insects makes me very  happy but on the flip side there is some contentment in knowing that the girls will learn algebra (though they might never use it) and have a structured routine (which I know will never happen on my end). But I am very very curious to know how homeschooling works. And how do homeschooling mamas function. I mean I love my kids to the moon and back but I also love the fact that I have a few hours to myself. To work. To sip coffee with friends. Or just to stare into space. But those are my few hours. And I think one of the biggest reasons the idea of homeschooling scares me is that I will loose out on my time. And that I will not be able to teach them all that needs to be taught. And that they might not have enough friends or extra curricular activities. Or maybe I am a chicken. I dont exactly know.

But homeschooling is very fascinating. Especially the school starting at 9 am bit. 10 am would be even better.

Ps: If it was not the green passport, the campervan idea I am absolutely convinced about!

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Once upon a words

So last year, was a year of its kind. Well all years are….but last year was different. More testing. More strengthening. More taxing. And in some bizarre way, more healing. And in that year I wrote. Endlessly. I wrote to relive. I wrote to help myself understand the twists and turns of life. I wrote because one day I want see myself published and then I wrote some more because I wanted to heal.

And then one day. after having written so much, I put a fullstop to a story that really hasnt ended. But I was tired. And it had started looking monotonous. And I needed feedback. So, I shared the word file with a few people whose opinion mattered and a few whose opinion really didnt matter but its always good to get feedback.

And feedback I got. I was amazed with the varied emails, whatsapp and phones conversations that happened after the people had given it a read. I felt ligher, more at peace and more ambitious.

And then I forgot about it. All my dreams of being published and signing my books for people at the reading sessions just dissolved into thin air. Well, not literally. But yea. A publisher suggested I publish it as an ebook. Another acquaintance said it has no potential right now, but after some reworking maybe it will make it to a press. A friend very strongly emphasized that it should be given a blog format. But all this required time. And as usual life happened on my end. School runs, photography, selling cars. Everyday stuff caught up.

Today, while cleaning the computer, I came across the word document. And I started reading. I am amazed at my ability. As a human being. How pouring the words out there give me peace. Restrengthen my faith and make me miss blogging/writing so much. I dont think that the document will ever be anything more than a document, but hey, I tried, I dreamt. Even though the words didnt manage to change the world, but it changed my world for me.

That tugging feeling

The last school year ended with alot of mixed emotions for Zoey. And for me. Kindergarten was ending. Classes were going to shuffle. Summer school was starting. Plans for vacations were being finalized. Eid clothes were under discussion. There were just too many things to look forward to. Actually, it was all quite overwhelming.

Fast forward to two months later. The vacation has ended. Eid long gone. Countdown happening to going back to school. Again too much happening. The excitement of the new school bag and the new black shoes is brimming. The parents are called for an orientation two days before the school starts for the students. And that was when it all hit me. The fact that Zoey is now a Junior school student. No more wearing white PE shoes everyday. New aspirations. Bigger dreams. New friends. Lots more to learn and explore. As I sat there, during the presentation, I just kept on going back to the day this 1.3 kg child was born. When exactly did she become so big? And where exactly did all the time in between go by?

I did notice that our conversations have taken a different route. We discuss about why we should pray and how can one make a difference. We discuss about bikini vs a diver suit costume. We discuss about why education is important when all one needs in life is to own a caravan and roam about the world. But the enormous-ity of it all was felt on the orientation day. I am very excited about the new things she will learn, new friends that she will make and the new dreams that she will be able to see. But I am also very sad to let go. Let go of her childishness. The innocent conversations that once used to happen. The liberty of me going and picking up clothes without her approval.  And so many more things.

But here’s to wishing her and all the kids the best of luck for all the dreams that they want to make true, for all the skies that they want to fly to and all the new places that they want to explore and wander off to.

Walking down the memory lane

I love going through old stuff. Photographs, blogs, text messages, journal entries. Everything. And it was during this stumbling that I came across an old blog of mine which has made me realize how I am no longer the person I used to be. My priorities, my experiences, my lifestyle choices, all have made me into a person I might not necessarily like to be. But the good thing is that I can still go back to being who I was. Maybe, all I needed was this reminder – 25 randomings about me…

1~ Till before my shaadi, everynight I would open my cupboard, take out a piece of jewellery that would hold my fancy and wear it to bed.

2~ I really really aim to be a part of “The amazing Race” one day inshallah.

3~ I have saved all the sent and recieved sms’es from U man from the day I proposed till 4 months after the shaadi.

4~ I am a total tea person, though sometimes I wish the tea would smell like coffee.

5~ Since kindergarden my parents had to face the complain from my teachers that I was the most talkative student in class. In 6th grade as a punishment, my teachers made me sit next to this girl who was perpetually on mute mode. 2 weeks later her parents were called in by the teachers. The complain was that she was the second most talkative kid in class. Thats how I found my best friend.

6~ I can very very easily become friends with strangers.  Striking conversations with random faces is something that I actually enjoy.

7~ Before leaving for Hajj in 2006, I left a letter for my best friend with another friend, to be delievered if I died there. To date I have that letter saved and everyday I think if I should give the letter to my best friend or not.

8~ I talk to myself…in my head alot.

9~ I cant dance or cook to save my life. I started taking singing lessons back in college but the ustad politely threw me out saying I should just participate in cricket matches and shout slogans there.

10~ People find it hard to believe that I am a scorpio….maybe in a lot of terms I am not one. But even though I forgive I am not the one to forget.

11~ Give me a book and I can stay awake the entire night….switch on a movie and hear me snoring in the first 15 mins.

12~ I have watched DDLJ 127 times and I have cried with the same passion in the end all those times.

13~ I cannot wear heels. For the mere fact that I feel very tall. On my valima, I was shoelessly greeting people and by the end of the function I had lost my shoes.

14~ I am a very very very light sleeper. Change of pillows, change of beds, hubby turning sides, all mean that I am lying wide awake….I really hope and pray to god that My kids dont inherit this from me.

15~ I think Allah Mian planned  marriage in my life so I would know and realise the worth of my parents and siblings, I think I took them for granted before…

16~ Unlike the rest of my generation people  and the generation younger, i am not a late night person at all.

17~ I dream of owning a pent house overlooking the golden gate bridge one day, inshallah.

18~ I absolutely do not like ketchup…extra, by the side type.

19~ I dream of getting a book published one day, which will make me rich and famous.

20~ Flying gives me a high. Once I am over with my immediate responsibilities, I want to learn how to fly.

21~ No matter how much I like a book, I just cant read it twice.

22~ Investments plans, gold, dollars are not exactly my cup of tea. I still save up my money in the “matti ki gullak” or “boogie” as we call it in punjabi.

23~ As much as I used to be anti marriage, I think by far it is the best thing that could have happened to me, alhumdulillah.

24~ I love surprises……even if its just a hug.

25~ I love driving – yes even in a city like Karachi!

 

Going the wazifa way

So, I am surrounded by people who are very big believers of wazifas. They have wazifas for everything, no matter how big or small it is.

Me, on the other hand, if I manage to say the five daily prayers, it’s a reason to celebrate. I love the concept of wazifa’s though. Reciting stuff that will help you achieve your wishes. But recently, it has also started to scare me. What if what I am asking for is not something that is best for me? Also, if God has already ordained something, do I want it to get changed? But then God has also mentioned that ask, and I will respond.

This is an ongoing battle in my head. Something that needs to get resolved. Pray for what I want? Or accept what’s already written.

How do I want to be remembered?

#week 4 #oprahblogchallenge

I saw this blog title on Jammie’s blog day before yesterday and since then I have been thinking about this question. I opened my blog to write about this quite a few times but nothing was conclusive enough to be shared. Till last evening. When my newsfeed started being flooded with the news of Dame Zaha Hadid passing away.

Zaha Hadid is a very familiar name for anyone who has anything to do with design.  A woman, who was an inspiration for millions, A feminist who believed in the power of other women, and a visionary who believed in changing the landscape of the metropolis, Hadid has some great architecture to her name.

And it was yesterday, that it hit home and I realized that’s how I wanted to be remembered, as an inspiration. Whether it is to my daughters, my friends, my co workers, my clients (who usually end up becoming friends) or people I just randomly exchange a smile with, I want to be remembered as an inspiration. As someone who makes them smile even when  they are long gone. Yes, thats exactly how I want to be remembered. Now I just need some sexy photographs of myself to be taken so they can be shared with my famous words once I am gone.

What is next?

#week2 #oprahblogchallenge

A new career.

Summer vacations.

Travel.

Birthdays.

Getting published. (fingers crossed).

Photographs. Lots and lots of them.

Losing weight. (wishful thinking).

Laughter.

New beginnings. (Books. Movies. Relationships. Thoughts. Concepts. writings).

Some more travel.

Coffee sessions with friends.

Plans.

Back up plans.

And some more wonderful things!

 

 

The miracle called Zoey-ness

7 years ago, today, a very swollen me had gone for my regular pregnancy check up not knowing that I would become a mom at a days notice. Two months earlier than expected.

I remember lying in that beautiful sunny room, praying for a miracle to happen. A miracle that would make my blood pressure go down and would let me resume my pregnancy for the next two months. But god had other plans. Better ones. Zoey came in this world surrounded by family, extended family and friends who are family.

2555 days, and life has just not been the same. There have been moments of utter and sheer joy, moments when I was so overwhelmed I cried, moments when I sat in the locked bathroom just because I wanted 2 mins of alone time and moments when I had it all planned out on how I will leave it all behind and run away. But in all honesty, the moments of love have preceded all else. And here I am writing down 7 points that I have learnt in these past 7 years.

~ People say life changes when you get married. Maybe they are right. But really, change is what happens once you have a kid!

~ Nothing is a biggie. Really. Zoey was 7 months old when she had bad flu. Cough. Stuffy nose and congestion. Vicks and nebuliser were my best friends. And then came along the nasal aspirator.A mother care one. Where one end was put in the baby’s nose and the other end was used by a parent to suck. Yes. That’s what I did regularly. Till one time the boggers came into my mouth. I sucked too hard. But that too didnt make me stop. Yes. very gross. Very very gross.

~ Zoey was a born fussy eater. I was supposed to feed her every two hours. But her feed would last one hour and 42 mins. After roughly 20 mins, the cycle would start all over again. Once she was older, I would strap her down and feed her spoonsful of baby food. Only for her to spit it all out. After almost 4 years of frustration I had learnt that she will only eat what she wants and when she wants. I can only try and introduce different food options to her.

~ Sometimes persistence is not the key. Zoey started to learn french and piano some years back. Initially she loved going for her classes. But slowly, she lost interest. There were tantrums, blackmails, scoldings, but nothing worked. She would go, because she wasn’t given a choice, but she was miserable. We continued week after week, but then we stopped. Our afternoons were spent more happily, reading, painting, crafting and sometimes doing nothing…knowing that there was no piano or french class to go to.

~ Travelling should be a priority. After paying the school fee, the installment for the car and the monthly expenses, anything that is left behind should be saved for travels. Big or small. Travelling with zoey has always been a pleasure. Somehow I feel that after every trip she grows up some more. Yes, mentally and physically.

~ The last two years, post Noor’s birth, me and Zoey had become the best enemies. She thought I was the most horrible mama and I assumed that suddenly she should start acting like shes 12 instead of 5. But then one day it hit me how wrong I was. And I learnt that even though she was older, she was still a child and needed her alone time with me. We both are on better terms now. We use our words to express our feelings. And communicate . Rather than shutting each other out.

~ Lying should be a complete no no. I learnt this the hard way. Zoey had severe constipation issues when she was 3. And sometimes only suppositories would help. And she hated those. Once, only once I told her I was checking something and shoved up a suppository. She’s going to be 7 in a day inshallah and she still remembers that. Everytime she’s doubtful about something she turns to me to ask if I am lying. Its very very hurtful to hear that from her. But I learnt. I use my words more discreetly, but I make it a point to not lie.

Life has been amazing since zoey come around. For everyone reading please say a little prayer for her!

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Somewhat broken me

I have written and rewritten and then erased and then tried to write once more but words have failed me. This is so so true. It’s hit me in such a positive way, I want to cry!

Have a lovely rest of the week.

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