Tuesday, March 18, 2014

DIY - word family house.

This year our main lessons have revolved around writing and reading year (not reading and writing).  We approached literacy this way because  this is how AR liked and enjoyed it. Plus that is how language evolved, through storytelling, writing and then reading. Alhumdulillah, AR has gotten good at writing (still learning) and now reading... He has written many of his own small books and really enjoys reading them. 

Recently  I introduced word families in an interactive way to see if he would be interested in them.  He totally loved them. I just leave them out in a bin on the table and he just picks them up randomly and tries to play and read the words.

Here is the link to these great interactive word family houses. And the second picture is from a book I just had to cut and color them.

How and when did you introduce literacy to your little ones? Please share in comments.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Why we love everything coconut

Coconut is a staple in our home, we love it "in" and "on" our bodies.  Hope this inspires you to include this wholesome superfood in your lives too.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Prioritizing & Reconnecting at deeper level with the Quran

Starting  each day with the recitation of the Quran puts ones heart at peace and in a state of calmness. This helps one to take on the challenges of the day and stay focused on the important things. The most beautiful part is every time one opens the Quran there are lessons and reminders for one to hold on to and work on for the day. 

The goal should be quality not quantity. Reading half a page, a page or two, but reading with understanding is important. If one doesn't understand Arabic then reading a translation can be useful. Trying and testing different amounts and seeing what works best can be helpful. 

As Muslims parents everyday we strive to instill in our kids the love of Quran and the Sunnah. What we forget is... If they don't see us loving Quran - by spending "one on one time" with it (I am sure we as parents are very familiar with this phrase) how exactly  do we expect them to love it.  If they don't see us turning to the Quran when we are overcome by negative emotions so we can return to our normal states. How will they learn to channel their emotions in a positive manner, or control them. To function at our optimal level we have to first and foremost connect ourselves with Allah and Quran. Having this spiritual connection can help us see this world and the people around us from a whole new lens.

I just have too much on my plate and that is the case of most moms. So I have set a goal to read one double  sided  page a day no matter where I am and how busy the day ahead might seem. I feel so dependent on it that if I miss it I feel out of place in all my roles as a woman, Or more like everything feels out of place. 

Every time before sitting with the Quran I just remind the kids that it Mama's time for what Allah created us for, if they need something I will listen to them after I am done. Of course, it took them some practice but now Alhumdulillah it so amazing,  while iI recite they quietly listen Mashaa-Allah. Before I use to explain in simple words to them that "Allah SWT created us only to worship Him, pray to Him and to read understand and implement the Quran. There are other important  things that we have to do but before all that comes Allah. And when pleasing Allah is our goal then Allah SWT helps us with everything " 

Here is a glimpse of the reminder I got from my time with Quran today. 

He said, "I only complain of my suffering and my grief to Allah , and I know from Allah that which you do not know. {Yusuf:86}

How is that you spend time with the Quran and make it an important of your day?

Life with a baby

Alhumdulillah  for older siblings and their tiny helpful hands.  Mashaa-Allah every  morning AR volunteers to feed baby S while I do some kitchen work.  And for some odd reason S is always more excited to eat with bhiya then Mama anyways.

I wanted to share some nutritious quick and easy baby food recipes ideas and tips. I puree fruits and veggies weekly and freeze them in ice cubes trays. I don't freeze any grains or seeds. Baby food is a great way to involve kids, they love blenders and pouring.

Every morning first thing I do is in a small pot I put 2 tablespoons of either organic brown rice, hulled millet (I use hulled because it's a lot quick and easier to cook), quinoa or brown rice flakes. While I prepare breakfast for the rest of the family the seeds are fully cooked. I just add a cube from the freezer of the puree while it's still warm, and it's ready to be served to our little man.

As he is getting older he is not interested in puree foods, he wants more texture and boiling fresh grains  and seeds adds that.  Sometimes I toss fresh fruit or veggies while the seeds still boiling and just mashed it slightly with a potato  masher.

I have done this all three of my kids and all of them have different reactions and tastes. So it important  to change things around depending  on individual  child's needs. These are no just easy to make but frugal too.

Here's our fresh pear and organic millet breakfast with a dash of organic cinnamon powder from this morning.