Friday, May 16, 2014

Friday Feature- Book Review:Marriage and children four book series

Asalamu alaikum,

This is a four book set that I had picked up at the book store in the Masjid I used to attend in Florida.

  • The Quest for Love and Mercy
  • Closer than a Garment
  • The Fragile Vessels
  • Our Precious Sprouts 

As a new Muslim and at that time being newly married I found these incredibly helpful. Learning the rights responsibilities of each spouse according to Islam can be confusing at times, this laid out everything in a very easy to follow manner. There are translations of each hadith /ayat used and detailed explanations.

The fourth, Our Precious Sprouts has been useful with each of my children. I sometimes have problems with cultural traditions that go against Islam, so it is good to have on a hand a reference book to be able to sort out what is allowed and what I should keep away from my children.

This book set seems to be geared towards slightly to the right of moderate Muslims. I would still recommend it even if you follow a more progressive branch of Islam, it is an excellent reference.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Pinterest Projects: Chocolate chip cookies

Asalamu Alaikum,

After avoiding it for so long, I finally joined pinterest, and quickly got addicted. I don't pin that much, mostly just ohhh and ahhh over the brilliant ideas. I have managed to tear myself away for a bit and actually do some of the stuff I pinned. As an encouragement to myself to keep going(rather than just waste my time drooling and never doing) I wanted to post some of the stuff and do a bit of review, keep track of any mods, etc. To see other projects in this little series, click on the "Pinterest projects" label at the end of this post.
Original Pin here

My version-
Delicious. That's it, just delicious. The recipe made a bunch, but they didn't last long!

Monday, May 12, 2014

Friday, May 9, 2014

Friday Feature: Life's little coincidences and crossovers.

Asalamu alaikum,

I love the little things in life that just seem to pull it all together. Sometimes it is just something small, like I am thinking of something, a particular fruit or snack food that I want and Tariq will bring it when I haven't said anything yet. Mostly it is just small things that make me smile, but sometimes it is bigger.

Remember this from soooo long ago? A crochet rectangle made by my MIL. not really having a purpose and left behind when she left after visiting the states. Who knew she would have a DIL that crocheted, that Tariq's cousin's wife would hold onto this seemingly purposeless piece for so long, and that it would end up with me for finishing?

Saad about 2 years old snuggled under Dadi Amma and mama's joint handiwork.

I did finally finish it(Oct. 2009 according to my Ravelry projects notebooks, so useful!) but couldn't find a post of it on the blog(Odd). So Saad used it for a while and it has been packed up and was waiting for the next little person. When Saif was born in November 2014 out it came.

Another similar thing has happened. Last year while cleaning out the storage room during SIL#3's wedding prep, SIL#2 found a partially completed sweater. the front and half of the back had been done, so they asked me to complete it. It sat around in my WIP pile for some time, while I worked on other more urgent projects.

Almost exactly the way Ammi had left it, I picked it up and knit from mid-way thru the last wide stripe of white.

Getting a rush of energy to finish up a bunch of WIPs and get everything in order(well, slightly less chaotic would be nice ;-)  I took this one out and just got it done. When I had almost finished, I looked at it and thought, "Hmmm, this is kind of big, it wouldn't fit FIL or BIL, I wonder who it was for?" Then I had that ah, if it was a snake it would have bit me moments, my husband is much larger than his father and brother (taller and wider in the shoulders). I thought well that must be who it was for then. So from curiosity I got out a sweater that I had knitted for Tariq while we were still in the States. EXACTLY THE SAME SIZE! Chest measurement, length, armhole, neck. Everything matched. Bit of a color difference, mine was done in maroon and black and hers in maroon and white.

It is just so interesting that we both knitted a sweater that was the same size, while living on opposite sides of the world, for the same person, (though I don't know when she started it). It is like a little thread of connection that we have. 

I really like to think that MIL and I( and maybe MIL and my Mom) would have gotten along very well. She seems, from what I have been told to be similar to my own mother. Crafty, loving, big heart. It is sometimes unnerving that people here that knew MIL, family, friends, neighbors, all tell me how many similarities we have. I really do regret that we never got to meet in this life.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Pinterest Projects: Maternity dress/kameez

Asalamu alaikum,

After avoiding it for so long, I finally joined pinterest, and quickly got addicted. I don't pin that much, mostly just ohhh and ahhh over the brilliant ideas. I have managed to tear myself away for a bit and actually do some of the stuff I pinned. As an encouragement to myself to keep going(rather than just waste my time drooling and never doing) I wanted to post some of the stuff and do a bit of review, keep track of any mods, etc. To see other projects in this little series, click on the "Pinterest projects" label at the end of this post.

Here is the original pin,  and here is my version-

This is a kameez inspired by a vintage maternity sewing pattern. It is a princess cut, with a bit of gathering across the front just under the bust. I sewed up a pair of simple trousers in the same pink as the sleeves to go with it.

Mods-I didn't do the rolled collar, instead I made a regular square neckline with a zipper down the front, to allow for easier breast feeding. I also opted for full sleeves.

I do love the pattern but it would have benefited from a better fabric choice. This one doesn't have enough drape, so on an already fluffy pregnant woman it just made me look a bit more tent like. I might consider doing another version in the future in a different fabric.

Friday, May 2, 2014

Friday Feature- Book Review: Two Islamic children's books

Asalamu alaikum,

As Saad gets older I wanted to get him some books of Prophets stories or stories with Islamic themes that we can  read together.


These are part of a set that I got on a trip to Saddar's Urdu Bazar. I was able to pick up two- Stories of the Ambiya for Children and Stories of the Qur'an for Youth both by Sheikh Hamid Ahmed Tahir. There is a third(Stories of the Sahabah for Children) which was not in stock at that time, inshAllah I can pick up another time.

Though they are too advanced for Saad to read alone still, we read them together and he enjoys them, generally choosing them over his other story books. The language is somewhat simple and at the end of each section there is a list of beneficial lessons, some simple questions and answers, and fill in the blanks to reinforce what he has heard.

I am working on some lesson plans for Saad (I want to supplement his formal education, which is kind of lacking in many ways), and am using these as one of our resources for Islamiat lessons.

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Wednesday Mini Tutorial: Bell Shaped Sleeves

Asalamu alaikum,

Bell sleeves are another simple modification that you can add to change they style to suit your own taste. I find that this style is better for fancy suits that do not get worn to do chores around the house. Because they hang down, they will get dirty quickly if you are doing things like making bread or doing dishes.

Step 1-Fold the sleeve in half, and at the ver end of your sleeve you will measure out from the fold the desired width of the sleeve. In the example I want a sleeve as wide as I can it so my mark is at 7.5" with one inch left for the seam.
Step 2-Five inches away  from the cuff towards the upper part of the sleeve you will put your second mark, this should be just enough to be snug on your arm. I have used five inches from the fold line.
Step 3-Connect the two marks.
Step 4-Draw a connecting line from the second mark to the top of the underside of your sleeve. You want the point at the upper side to be on inch away from the cut edge to give you a one inch seam at that point.
Step 5-Draw another line one inch away from the first, this will be your cutting line.
Step 6-Sew along the upper line, and attach to your kameez using set in sleeve method. If you are uncomfortable using this method, the procedure is the same when you have already attached the sleeve to the kameez, and then start from step 1 of this tutorial.