1 Jun 2018

Dad, Me And The Camera

This is my father's camera and there are so many memories hanging around. Growing up with a dad who loves photography meant growing up with a camera. I used to be his subject and the result is now I have some 5 or 6 albums to rekindle my childhood. Even though cameras were within our reach, I failed to show interest in how it worked. I have always loved to stand in front of the lens, but was not keen enough to become the one who's behind it. Not until few years ago.

I'm still learning to see through the lens. While at it, I realize there's so much to see of what we usually throw a glimpse at.

#IMissYouVaapa #IamDaddysGirl #InTheMemoryOfMyFather

May Allah grant him magfirath and the highest rank in paradise. Aameen. Jumma Mubarak!


16 May 2018

Bedtime Sunnahs ~ Book Review

Another beautiful illustrative and educational Children's book I came across is Bedtime Sunnahs : Emulating the Prophet one night at a time from Prolance.

Author - Alia. G. Dada
Illustrator - Robert Boyer
Publishers - Prolance

To most of us, reading  becomes a habit before going to sleep. Nowadays, there are many bedtime story books available in the stores. While most are happy and imaginative, only a few teaches the children a moral and a lifestyle. And this is one such book that focuses on Islam.

Basically, it is essential that we follow a good routine, and with a purpose for the love of our Prophet. This book instills the faith and inspire the little ones with the affection towards family. I am inspired with this short and precise book of beautiful rhyme and vibrant illustrations. The book talks about night time practices for kids and even the grownups - fostering a love for the Prophet’s Sunnah. This religious routine is for the entire family.

My parents had taught me these simple recitals to do during bedtime when I was young and it has been a part of my lifestyle since then. The routine and prayers mentioned in this book are highly rewarding. Perhaps, we all know and religiously recite small surahs and duas daily. Still, I appreciate the author for her effort in bringing this night time Islamic practices as a form of Children's book. It was very thoughtful.

The rhymes are not only enchanting but also encourages the children to practice good deeds everyday. The book also has references to Hadiths which makes our daily routine towards the path of Sunnah.

As Ramadan approaches, this is a good time to motivate the kids to reflect and to do good deeds consistently while practicing it as the way of life.  Also I suggest this cute and colorful book to be in every Muslim household.

A wonderful read, this book would be a great addition to your collection and a Ramadan gift to your young ones, this year.

May Allah bless us all with strong Iman and Taqwa, peace and abundance, health and prosperity, purity of heart and goodness in this life and the next. May Allah accept our duas, fasting and grant forgivenes in this holy month. Ramadan Mubarak!

This book is available in Amazon.in

21 Apr 2018

Who is the Fool? : Calvin And Me - IV

 Featured post on IndiBlogger, the biggest community of Indian Bloggers

Previously ---> Calvin And Me

I return from the date, victorious - after beating Nusie in the game of bluff. Okay, it was a date for me, what she thinks, let’s not worry about it for now. As much as I hate, I have to give credits to Calvin for teaching me the game last night after I scouted for the monsters under his bed.

Me: Hiya Calvin! You know what happened?

Calvin: What. Did Nusie kiss you?

Me: Huh. No. I guess it’s time to re-enable the parental lock on the TV channels.

Calvin: Boy! Ask a simple question and get all your television privileges revoked.

Me: I put your bluff tips to work and won the game. She came out for a coffee with me, as per the condition. Yay!

Calvin: And your train of thoughts would have just whooped your entire happy life in front of your eyes, right?

Me: Yes… she is perfect and it was so beautiful.

Calvin: Beautiful duh, you fool.

Me: What do you know about love?

Calvin: The moment you see her, your heart falls into your stomach and splashes your innards.

Me: Then?

Calvin: All the moisture makes you sweat profusely, this condensation shorts the circuits to your brain and you get all woozy.

Me: And?!  *he seems to know so much about it*

Calvin: When your brain burns out altogether, your mouth disengages and you babble like a cretin until she leaves.

Me: That’s Love?! OMG that happened to me quite a lot with her, but I thought it was cooties.

Calvin: Medically speaking, that’s love for you, my friend. Girls want boys to do their work and show their superiority over you. Fall in love and you will end up.. well, I don’t wanna say that, you know.

Me: By what you are saying, it seems that there is an inverse relationship between how good a guy is and how much fun it is to fall in love.

Calvin: Well, put on this cap and let's go find out.

Calvin and me put on our summer caps to beat the heat. Like two brave warriors at heart and nervous faces, we head to meet Nusie. I know I was walking into the moment that I’ve waited for,  hoping Susie will not be around so that Calvin does not bail out on me, again.

Nusie: Hey Guys, are you here to meet Susie?

Calvin: Pretty smart, eh? Let’s go back and rendezvous later.

Me: No. Wait *Grabs Calvin by his tee* We are here to meet you. Er, I mean, I am here to meet you.

Nusie: Anyways, Susie is taking her power nap.

Calvin: *phew* Okay, I’m gonna sit here and read the magazines while you both have your moment of truth.

Nusie: Moment of truth? what is he talking about?

Me: Nusie…

Nusie: Yes,

Me: I love you!

I just said it along with her Yes, so that it resonates in my ears as an Yes for my proposal

Nusie: What.. Noo.. How did this happen.. Why.. But…. *she is having a ruckus moment*

Meanwhile, Calvin is done turning pages of five magazines and back.

Calvin: Man, this is so boring. I wish there was a movie theatre someplace. Do you guys know any?

Me : *grits my teeth and signalled him to move away* Calviinn…. We are having a moment here.

Calvin: Oh, it’s a sunny day out and let me go catch some bugs.

Calvin walks out swiftly and trust me he is gonna come back with a bag of bugs. After all, his insect collection project is due this week.

Nusie: Are you playing a prank on me?

Me: No way. I would be a fool to do so.

A scream comes from inside followed by Susie with her hair full of bugs. She was holding a paper bag which had a label ‘Open for a surprise gift’.

Susie: Calvin, I’m gonna kill you!!!

We lean into Susie’s room to see Calvin jumping out of the window back to the garden, with a smile of satisfaction on his face and shouting back.

Will continue…

30 Mar 2018

Simple As That ~ Book Review

Simple As That - The Muslimah’s Practical Guide To Building Strong Family Ties by Nafla Salahudeen, is another good book I read lately on family bonding and relationships. It is a complete guide for every woman who wants to lead a happy life with her family and maintain good relationships with her kin. The book says it is not difficult but it is as simple as that.

We are living in the era of feminism where we talk about equal rights for women and that becomes one of the hottest topics of discussion everywhere. We have a natural tendency to forget responsibilities while we keep thinking all the time about our rights. When we get reminded about our responsibilities, we say to ourselves ‘Well, I don’t get my rights, why should I think about my responsibilities?’. As much as it sounds hard, Rights and Responsibilities are two different things. In such conditions, this book comes as a reminder.

Each girl is unique but they need to be nurtured well and taught with the basics to meet their future with confidence and understanding. Being born a lovely daughter, she is expected to fulfill certain important roles in her life. The stability of these roles and her happiness in them is largely determined by how she was brought up. While academic education doesn’t shape her into a good human being, but what she learns from her parents, build her a strong personality, to become an all-rounder, and a winner among her loved ones.

To begin with, the way the topics in the books are arranged are simply fitting to the significant stages of relationships in every woman's life. From the Mother Daughter relationship, to being a Spouse, then daughter-in-law and finally becoming the mother-in-law, this quick guide talks about the important phases of every woman’s lives where we need to be aware of our responsibilities and be sure that we act selfless. In the chapter of Am I bringing the poison - You and Your heart, the story of Li-Li titled ‘How to poison your mother in law’ was very interesting and a quirky lesson on being free of expectations by giving our best.

I liked the way the author quotes beautiful Hadees and Quranic verses, in every chapter. These references make it easier for the Muslimahs to connect to the ways of Prophet Muhammed (PBUH). The book emphasizes on each aspect of the responsibilities and the rewards promised by Allah.

Abdullah ibn Amr(may Allah be pleased with him) reported that it was said to the Messenger of Allah, ‘Which of the people is best?” The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said, ‘Everyone who is pure of heart and truthful in speech.’ They said, ‘Truthful in speech we know, but what is a pure heart?’ The Prophet said, ‘It is a heart that fears Allah and is clean. There is no sin in it and neither aggression, malice, nor envy.’

This book is very relatable and many situations we, as a woman, may have encountered. There are practical situations and the kind of mistakes, we usually do. This book gives us the tips to overcome the same. It all looks more like a common sense but that’s where many of us fail succumbing to the situation and end up turning it unpleasant.

Insha Allah, the Holy Quran and the Prophet’s (PBUH) Sunnah will guide us to practice these guidelines and find peace in our life.

Author, Nafla Salahudeen's dream of sharing a beneficial message to the Islamic community and her passion towards writing has led her towards this book.

Life and circumstances are not that difficult to handle. It is as simple as that. Well, if only we know how to handle the situations. I appreciate the author for pointing out the reality and the part what a woman plays in both family and the society, to give the best to the people in her life to build strong ties and lead a happy life.

This book is available in both English and Tamil. And you can purchase this book by ordering via WhatsApp at +94773799198. Tamil book costs 3 USD and English version costs 4 USD.

Simple as That, is targeted to Muslim women but I would recommend this book to women of all community and ages to read and get enlightened. After all, it is about our relationships and responsibilities.

26 Mar 2018

Nutrilite - Exclusively from Amway

Last weekend, I attended a blogger meet organized by Amway India, in Bangalore. I was looking forward because Amway, as we know, is the pioneer in healthcare and home products for the past 20 years. But what interested me more was the purpose of the event - New age Ayurveda and its advantages. It was also a launch event of their new age ayurvedic products.

With low immunity and improper sleep cycle, my health was taking a toll for the past few weeks. Just when I needed a boost, Amway India brings Nutrilite For Health. With right choice of supplements, it's high time to care my body and mind, as much as possible, and I hope to stay fit and stress free.

We are in the world where fresh fruits replaced by bottle juices, vegetables are served as boxed salads, our evening outdoor activities have changed to video games and TV shows, healthy lifestyle seems a bit far to reach. With growing technology, the ever busy life and the flood of junk food that follows wherever we go, it is also unfair to blame ourselves, for being derailed from our ancient tradition. However, in the pursuit of wellness, I was all geared up for the meet.

Having strong belief in reaching their consumers through experience and not just by advertising, Amway conducted the event at their first Digital Experience Store. And it did excite us with a wonderful experience.

Amway India welcomed us warmly for the launch of their new range of Herbal products. These Ayurvedic products are developed for the indigenous Indian consumers.

        Dr. C.A.Kishore,       Mr.Ajay Khanna,       Ms.Simrat Bishnoi
Ayurvedic Physician       Category Head        Corporate Head

‘Care before cure’ - with that as core, Amway India launched the ‘Nutrilite Traditional Herbs Range’ . Nutrilite, exclusively from Amway, is known for its Vitamins & Dietary ayurvedic supplements. These Traditional herbal range consists of 4 daily health supplements - Ashwagandha, Tulsi,  Brahmi and Amalaki, Vibhitaki & Haritiaki.

Each bottle has 60 tablets and it costs Rs. 649/-

Being a rejuvenator, Ashwagandha is known to help in supporting vitality and easing stress. Brahmi is known to support mental agility and improving attention. Having laxative properties, Amalaki, Vibhitaki & Haritiaki are known to help in digestion and improve appetite. The blend of these three herbal extracts helps in detoxifying the body systems. And the Tulsi, as we all know, helps in supporting immunity and it is an antioxidant.

Purity, Safety, Potency (PSP) are assured in every product of Nutrilite to bring out the best of nature, science and Indian traditional wisdom. The process of inventing these small wonders built a firm bridge between the ancient Indian traditions and the latest technology in the field of nutrition and health care. It was great to know the journey of these products #SeedtoSupplement.

When asked about why it took so long for them to launch these Ayurvedic products, Mr. Ajay Khanna, Category Head of Nutrition and Wellness, replied 'We wanted to make it absolutely right for the consumers for India', which was very promising to hear.

In the #GuruSpeaks segment, they clearly emphasised on the value of healthy Indian lifestyle, and that reminded me of ‘Paati vaithiyam’/’Daadi me ke nuske’ which we hear from our elders all the time.

Nowadays, the intake of multi vitamins and other supplements becomes a daily dose, ensuring we get the necessary nutrients that are missing from our diet. But today, the market has many other Ayurvedic products as well. Especially, when all of them claim to contain the same natural herbs, it becomes a real challenge for us to make the right choice.

So we clarified our doubts about other market players, affordability, shelf life, personalized immunity and the do’s and don’ts of Ayurveda during the Q&A. The panel answered all our questions patiently and in detail. The Q&A session was interesting and informative. There was a Quiz Buzz segment as well, where they questioned us about the #NutriliteForHealth facts and we won some cool prizes.

After the launch, we explored the Amway’s Digital Store. It has a wide display of their products including beauty and health care, cookware, home care products and also Kids products. There was a Virtual Make Up Zone where we get to find out how we look with the makeup on and also suggestions the right color tone suits your skin tone and facial features, without trying on the real product.

A unique feature which I liked the most was, the QR code on every certified product container that takes you on a visual tour to Amway website. Where we get more detailed description of the items. This digital store is definitely not less than an exciting experience for shoppers.

Overall the launch event was fun and interactive. And Amway India’s Nutrilite Traditional Herbs Range is all set to revive the ever useful traditional herbs to bring a better health for its consumers.

#AmwayIndia #NutriliteForHealth
Location - Amway Digital Store, 100ft Road, Indra Nagar. Bangalore.

PS - This is a sponsored post about the launch event. I received these ayurvedic products to try, and I am looking forward to see the effects.

16 Mar 2018

Fujifilm X-H1 : The Launch

Recently I was invited to attend a launch event in Bangalore. It was basically a meet and greet session. Still, I
was very excited especially because the launch product was a Camera. Being a photography enthusiast, I did go,
try and experience the digital device.

FujiFilm India has launched a new camera, in addition to its X series. In the midst of the X series range, this
is first of its kind.

The Managing Director of Fujifilm India Mr. Haruto Iwata & his team welcomed the guests and launched their
premium flagship product Fujifilm XH1. Mr. Ashwin Joshi, Manager of Image Capture Division, explained the
technical capabilities of the XH1. There was also a brief Q&A session with the audience.

The First Impression - I was attracted to its sturdy look and ergonomic design. However, it looks slightly bigger
than other X series cameras, like XT-2.

The XH1 is Fujifilm’s first mirrorless camera featuring 5 axis In-Body Image Stabilization (IBIS).
Integrated with high precision laser measuring instrument, it has a capability of holding lenses from 14mm
to 400mm.

At the event, they had setup a 'Touch & Try Corner’. There, I got a chance to handle the camera and mounting
it with a wide variety of lenses.

There was a 'Shooting Corner' in the arena, where few models stood posing for the photographers, who wanted
to test the performance of the new camera. When I captured the dancing one, I was surprised to see the
clarity. With my shaky hands and moving image, I did achieve a sharp photo. The image quality was stunning and so were the color tones of the subject.

Being the first Fujifilm camera to feature IBIS, which offers a maximum of 5.5 stops of compensation
depending on the lens that you're using. This was one of the features that catches everyone's attention. It
provides high quality image stabilization which processes the moving video and makes corrections ~10000
times every second, to give a steady image on the screen. This is the only camera in the segment to feature
‘Dual dedicated processor’ too.

XH-1 Click
Having many positive features, the price of the camera starts from Rs. 1,49900/- With its high quality photographic range, XH1 becomes a perfect choice for those looking to buy a high-end camera. This is ideal for Wedding, Fashion & Wildlife Photography.

I wish I get to try this newly launched XH-1 before I own one. ;)

FujiFilm : Shooting Moment, Making Stories

Check for detailed specifications -> Here

#FujifilmXIndia @FujifilmXIndia

NOTE : This is not a review. This post is about my camera handling experience at the launch event of Fujifilm XH1.

10 Mar 2018

The White Bird

Meet my adorable baby budgie, the first born. And witness her first glimpse of the world.

7 Mar 2018

Muslim Girl, Growing Up - A Guide To Puberty

I got a chance to read this insightful young adult book, which I think is a must for every girl who is in her preteen. As much as I was happy to read, I am happy to share it with you as well. Alhamdulillah!

Written by       -  Natalia Nabil
Illustrations by -  Melani Putri
Publishers  - Prolance

Back in the day, attaining puberty was a shy and awkward affair. My friends have spoken about periods but mostly in a teasing way. My mother gave subtle hints about it to educate me. Yet, I was not very comfortable and open to discuss about the changes I went through. I guess most of the girls were and still are in this mind set.

There comes a phase where we all go through changes in our body as we grow, and entering puberty is one
of the significant early changes that we experience. The transition is like a bridge between childhood and adulthood. Puberty is natural but it is an emotional and at times confusing for the child. So it becomes parents’ responsibility to keep them informed, at ease and prepare them to handle the adolescence. Especially, for a girl, if they are unaided and unaware, there is a possibility of developing fear and discomfort by the sight of their first spotting.
This book has detailed views and colorful illustrations, which makes the growing girls easily get along with the topic. The vivid pictures make the understanding better and easier.

Muslim Girl, Growing Up is ideal for the girls of 8 - 19 years. Actually, the author had her daughters in mind while writing this guide. It makes it easy to relate to and follow the guide. But still, it is best to discuss personally with your children about growing up.

I love this book, especially because it gives right and vital information. From the very basic definition of puberty to personal hygiene and privacy, the topics include How to change your pad, How to know when its over, How to take bath after your period, How to dispose the pad, How to keep your body parts clean, about the PMS (the hormonal changes) that happens during adolescence and much more elaborately. This book covers every aspect for the girls to know what is it they are going through and how to handle it. Not only that it helps to understand physically but also it gives the emotional support.

The author has written this guide for young Muslim girls to understand the basic things they should know about puberty, while the religious aspects come along with it. But still, I would say this book belongs to every girl out there, irrespective of their religion and customs. After all, it is about a natural phase every female experiences in her life.

The book is informative and illustrative, and can be a good gift for preteens and teens. However, this guide is just a starter to the beautiful journey ahead.

Now available at Amazon.in. Do buy this guide, if you have a young girl at home.

Happy Women's Day!

28 Feb 2018

When Words Become Stranger

I can’t seem to write, nowadays
I have become a stranger to words
Or perhaps, I am a stranger unto myself
I love to rhyme. I tell stories.
I have played with words.
Standing in my balcony,
Behind this glass window
Watching the early morning sky
It is a beautiful day, yet
Everything feels so distant to me
I blow my hot breath against the glass
Painting hearts on the foggy window
What do you write?, they ask.
Some seemingly sensible reasons, of course.
Mm, stuff like that, I said dismissively.
Still blowing on the misty window pane
Staring at the vanishing hearts
Carelessly watching over
The boys playing cricket
Hah, the ball hits the stump
And there goes a wicket.
Focused as they appear,
Sure footed players,
Knowing what to do.
While I stand aloof with uncertainty
Stuck with my unsaid words.
When thinking becomes philosophy,
This distraction feels strangely familiar
Leaving the vapors of my hot musings
I walk away with abstract thoughts
Preparing myself to muse
About being unable to write.
Of how I become a stranger.
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