Friday, August 31, 2012

Toddler Activity: Build a hut

I have been dreaming of teepees and cardboard castles and reading nooks for Anya’s room thanks to Pinterest! But still haven’t been able to make it yet.

However, one day we were trying to get rid of this broken IKEA dresser from Anya’s room and disassembled it somewhat. While I was at it though, I realized it would make an adorable little temporary play hut for Anya.

So for one afternoon or two, this little guy sat in our living area and then our kitchen. We put a cushion in it and some toys/pillows etc. so she could sit in it and read.

Take a peak!

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Cute right? I had plans for wallpapering the insides to cover up the holes from where the drawers etc. were. And then maybe make a little sloping cardboard roof on the top! Are you imagining what I was? lol.

Sadly, we realized it wouldn’t probably work because it was too big for Anya’s room and she kept bumping into it! Sigh! Anyways it made a fun little nook for her for the few days that it stayed. Meanwhile I’m still dreaming of the perfect DIY hut/teepee/nook for her room!

Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Natasha & Asher: A love session

Hey lovelies,

Just wanted to share some sessions I’ve done recently. This is a little picture heavy, I hope you wont mind.

Here is a love session I did for a friend’s sister. Loved taking their pictures. It is so nice to see a couple that has such genuine respect for each other in these times. Enjoy the pictures!



















Thanks for stopping by!


Toddler Activity: Outdoor Sensory Tub

Hey lovelies,

The weather has been lovely here. Nice and sunny and kind of hot too most days, which is great, because yes, I like summers to feel a bit like summers. Because hot summer days remind me of back home. And it also gives us a chance to make some hot summer day traditions for our little family.

We make a water based sensory tub for Anya on hot days and she enjoys it while I sit on the deck and catch up on some reading:)

Would you like a glimpse? Check it out!



I'm sure you can tell. She loves it!

Thanks for stopping by!


Monday, August 27, 2012

Of picnics and making memories

I have a thing for picnics!

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Maybe it’s the many many happy memories I have of picnics with my parents and our family. We’ve had picnics all over Pakistan, some with only our family, some with loved ones. So many memories from so many little picnics.

From various Karachi beaches, river-sides, farms, road-sides, road trips, lake-sides, parks and whatever place my parents could find. I remember my mom’s food, I remember the heat and the cold, I remember the sunshine, I remember the planning and my dad’s driving and the effort to find the best spot. I remember how the same food tasted so different. I remember the ice cold drinks. I remember the relaxing after, my dad lying on our blanket with his sunglasses on, my mom sketching or painting and the three of us just loitering around. I remember the memories. I remember it all.

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Some days our breakfasts, our lunches, our snacks need to be celebrated, and we don’t need an occasion for that. I say grab a pretty blanket, and whatever food you can find, dress up in some fun colors and make the most of the sunshine. Find a pretty place and if you’re lazy like me, let it be a corner of your backyard or your patio or even your living room, for that matter! I learnt this from my mother. Lets not wait for the perfect, lets make every day an occasion, lets make memories!

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Pictures from a random backyard picnic with my little girl!

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Celebrating Eid

It is very strange, the things motherhood and parenthood does to you! Our Eid celebrations used to be pretty random and low key till Anya entered our lives. Suddenly we felt a responsibility to celebrate it in better ways, to decorate for it, to make it a memorable occasion for her as she grows up!

This Eid we threw a little Eid Potluck at our house and celebrated with our close friends and their families. Since our families are not nearby to celebrate with us on such occasions, our friends here become the closest thing we have to family.

Thought I’d share a little glimpse into our little Eid celebration!

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Thanks for stopping by!

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Note: For those not familiar with the concept, Eid is to us Muslims what Christmas is to Christians. Eid-ul-Fitr comes after Ramadan, the month of fasting and marks the end of fasting. We all celebrate in our own ways but most involve dressing up in our best, lots of eating, and enjoying the day with friends and family:)

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Long Distance Celebrations!

When you live so far away from loved ones, most often than not, you miss occasions like birthdays, anniversaries, eids, holidays etc and sometimes it breaks your heart not to be able to celebrate together. There is absolutely no alternative to being together in person, being able to plan a special day, being able to hug your special ones, eating together, laughing together and just celebrating.

And even though its hard when you live so far way, we cant let a little distance spoil these special days for us. Special occasions need to be celebrated. And near or far, that is exactly what we got to do. We have finally embraced the distance (only somewhat), and figured out a way to celebrate together. The video-conferring way!

Since the last two years or so, it has been an almost daily routine to talk on Skype. We have managed to find a time that works for all of us (most days) and now we cant imagine what we did without it. Since we're in three different continents, Skype would only let us do audio calls three-way. Many times we thought about paying for a premium account so we'd be able to do video calls. And then we found out about a service that let us do that for free. Have you heard of Oovoo? It is awesome because my mom and sister in Pakistan, my sister in London, and myself and Anya here, can all see each other.

Here are some ways we have celebrated on video calls this past year!

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It is very important for me that Anya sees the presence of our families in our world even if has to be over the computer. A friend of mine has a tradition that every Eid, after namaz, she dresses up her kids and together they Skype with the kids' dada dadi, nana nani. Sometimes we friends plan to have breakfast somewhere outside but she refuses saying they have to talk to the grandparents. I always loved this dedication of hers and wanted it for us too when we had a baby.

So last year for Anya's first eid, we planned the same. We skyped with her dadi and her phupos first thing in the morning after we got dressed up. Seeing the excitement in their voices and the twinkle in their eyes as they loved this little piece of us, was lovely.

This eid too we Oovoo'd with my sister in London and my family in Pakistan, including my grandparents, Anya's great-grandparents MA!

These little online celebrations are the perfect start to our Eid mornings!

Mother's Day

This past Mother's Day, we really wanted to celebrate our mom. She has been the sole source of strength for our family since the day Papa got sick and even more so after he left us. Without her, I cannot begin to imagine where we'd be (May Allah bless her in every way always, Ameen).

So we planned an Oovoo party for her. Waliya set up a corner beautifully and brought Mama, while we waited on Oovoo. It was a surprise for mama that all three of us could video-conference together and she loved it!

Photos and Collage by my sister, Waliya Najib

Birthday Party

For Mama and Waliya's birthday, we decided to spend the exact moment the clock struck 12, together. Nadiya and I had put up simple birthday decorations even. And when the clock struck twelve, we all sang Happy Birthday, and Anya danced some. Then they opened their gifts infront of us. And it felt like in a small way we were a part of their day.

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Have you ever celebrated the video-conferencing way? Would love to hear your experiences. And yes its not the least bit close to being there in person. But for us, living oceans apart, its the next best thing.

Thanks for stopping by!

Eid Mubarak!

Hey lovelies, Wishing you and yours a very happy Eid. So sorry for the unannounced disappearance. We’ve been busy with some things since the end of ramazan and then Eid.

Despite the MIA, lots of fun ideas have been brewing in my head, and I’ll be back very soon with lots of fun posts!

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Keep stopping by!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Guest Post: DIY frame decor

Another guest post with my lovely sister Waliya. She recently shared a frame she made for her room on her fb page which got quite a response. And since I love DIYs and sharing them, I asked her to tell us about that project of hers.

Here’s what she had to say!


My mom had a very old rusty blue frame lying around the house, And all I knew is that I HAD to use it somehow for my room. So I thought of a few ideas for it. Didn't end up doing any of those though, but I can always save those for next time. So what I ended up doing was spray the frame yellow to give it a new look, wrote down some inspirational words on card-paper, attached them together from all four ends, and here it is. Did this very randomly but it makes my room look happy, I love it!

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Hope this inspires you in making something fun. Happy crafting ♥


all photos by Waliya Najib

Isn’t it just super gorgeous! I specially love the contrast of the yellow against the blue wall. Waliya, thanks for sharing love. We are all waiting for you to send us a room tour now ;)

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

To hope. To a brighter future

Sharing some more collages today!





Thanks for stopping by!

DIY: onesies for my girl

I believe in the power of the handmade. I have grown up wearing knits and clothes hand knitted and sewn by my granny and my mom. And when I knew I was going to have a daughter, I wanted to make things for her too. Except, I cant knit and though I do own a sewing machine, I definitely cannot sew much! So when I saw some decorating onesies games at baby showers, I thought that would be something I could do:)

So a couple months before she was born, I sat down and decorated some onesies for her.

The one little bird onesie:

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I cut out this bird from a fabric I had, and attached it to onesie using the ‘Heat n Bond’ iron-on adhesive. And then added the words using regular stamps and fabric paint.

The yellow bird onesie:

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the elephant applique onesie:

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the boat applique onesie:

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My friends used these onesies as decorations at my baby shower too. Isn’t it sweet?

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These pictures from my baby shower by Muqu Javed, my talented photographer friend.

Hope this post gets you in a bit of a DIY mood;)

Thanks for stopping by!

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