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Bedoor Bluemoon

Everyday writing to expose the soul

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Shimmer- Makeup Trends

Shimmer

I remember back in middle school when over the summer holidays we were blessed with oily skin and growth spurts.  Sadly, my name didn’t come up in the “Growth Spurt” list but I was compensated with the oily skin three times.  It was crazy.  The amount of care you need to put to dab the oil from your skin was ridiculous.  The magazines we read had information on how to find out what your skin type was, like it wasn’t obvious.  Wash your face and take a piece of tissue/cotton/can’t remember what we needed, and place it on your face 20 minutes afterwards to see if there is any oily residue.  The problem was we were all a bunch of teenagers with hormones that can drown you and skin that makes you cringe so we were all (combination skin).  Powder paper from the Body Shop was our best friend even though it keeps running out of stock.

Learning how to beautify yourself was very difficult given the minimum media available.  Besides magazines, there were only books, TV shows, and advertisements you see in shops.  Nowadays, beautifying yourself is a way of life for some fashionistas who, in addition to makeup artists, promote products like primers and matifying BB creams for those who have a problem with oily skin.

Then someone decided the “shimmer” was a good thing (hence the vampire gif) and EVERYONE wanted to shine.

Shine- Aswad

Apparently if you go through media nowadays, there are specific areas which need to shine for you to have a good glow.  Call me outdated but I was surprised when I saw people adding shine on their nose.  I’VE BEEN DABBING MY NOSE FOR SO LONG, WHEN DID THIS TURN TO FASHION???

Now I believe that beauty is in the eyes of the beholder and lo and behold I hope being fat becomes a fashion statement 🙂

Afternoon Tea- Repost

Tea

Repost- Afternoon Tea

image

The first memory she had of her grandmother’s house was the scent of freshly baked blueberry muffins.  She loved how the aroma filled the entrance and loved the traces of flour on the surface of the working area.  She would draw little hearts and her grandmother would tease and ask if the hearts were meant for her or the muffins, and she would answer the muffins.  She loved her grandmother who introduced her to this wonderful world of baking.

She remembered the sweet lemon pies they would make in the summer to accompany the swimming trips and the warm apple cinnamon crumble that would accompany the winter winds.  She was her grandmother’s little helper.  The person who would hold the rolling pin and the person who would garnish the cake tops with chocolate shavings.  She was the person who would cut the two day old bread to cover with the custard, raisins, and nuts and turn it into warm home-made pudding.  She would always choose the floral tablecloth and tea set for their days together and would help serve afternoon tea to her family and enjoy every second of their tea time together.

All her free time was spent in the kitchen with her grandmother.  she learned everything in regards to the temperatures, recipes, and baking tips. She asked her father for a set of baking pans for her tenth birthday and was ecstatic when she unwrapped the pink wrapping paper and saw them in the box.  Her first baking pans.

She always wanted to settle down and start a family of her own.  She met Owen once she started college in orientation and  things just clicked between them.  Her short dark hair and warm hazel eyes penetrated his heart and he knew that she was the woman of his dreams.

They had some joined classes and Owen was so happy to help Catherine with her work.  They spent so much time preparing for projects and presentations.  After two years of college, Catherine told Owen that she will not be continuing her education and a Diploma was enough.  Her grandmother have passed away and she had to go back and spend her summer in the old kitchen.  He understood her passion and wished her well but didn’t want to lose her so he promised to take some time to visit her for a week during the spring break.

She walked into the old kitchen and ran her fingers across the top of the working area. Dust in place of flour.  She opened the cupboards that once held the dried cranberries and vegetable oil and they were empty.  She sighed.  She opened the fridge that was once packed with eggs and cream to have an empty space stare back.  She took the rolling pin in her hand and started to think of a way to bring life back into her grandmother’s  house.

She smiled and started to work on cleaning up the house.  She started with the kitchen, then the rooms, and finally the living area.  She made sure the place was warm and welcoming as it always was when her grandmother was around.  She left the house and came back with bags of groceries.

She started by making a basic vanilla cake. She sliced the vanilla bean and used half in the custard she was cooking on the stove.  Her heart skipped a beat when she thought the eggs curdled but was satisfied to see that it all went well.  Her grandmother taught her well.

she was expecting her father, mother, and sisters to arrive soon and Owen also confirmed he would be coming over for tea.  He had a different plan in mind and coordinated with Catherine’s mom to propose.  She was ecstatic to hear and gave her blessings.

Catherine chose the floral table spread and got her grandmother’s floral cups and saucers.   She started boiling the water for the tea and was piping creme patisserie in her eclairs when the doorbell rang.

It was nobody.  She felt a bit of wind across her face so she had to make sure the draft was managed by closing the windows.  Catherine arranged the eclairs, vanilla cake, mini sandwiches, scones, and oatmeal cookies on the table and took a seat next to her grandmother’s chair.  She placed a plate with one piece of each baked good and a cup of warm tea as tribute to her grandmother.  She was content with the outcome of four hours of baking and felt her grandmother would be proud.

The guests walked in and were impressed.  Her sister beamed and Owen didn’t believe she didn’t buy the cakes.  She smiled and sat down, making sure every one had a taste of her cakes.

Owen proposed.  He went down on one knee and told her how she filled his life with happiness and what an honor it would be if she accepts to be his wife.  He slipped the ring on her finger.  Her family congratulated them and soon the get together was over.

Catherine was alone in the house, cleaning up and putting things back.  It was the perfect day in her grandma’s little home.  She was wiping the working area and unconsciously started drawing little hearts.  She was exactly where she wanted to be.

“These are for you, grandma,”

When on Vacation- Buy Lollipops

Lollipop

 

lollipop
I love traveling.  Who doesn’t, right?  There are many ways in which you can turn your travel experience to better or worse.  Obviously, you must research where you are going, what you’re going to do, and what your budget is.  Who you’re traveling with is very important too because you don’t want to end up stuck with that person you can’t handle for ten days straight, right?

Well, this is the first time I travel with both of my children.  One is three and a half years old and the other is almost a year old.  Things were great, I didn’t expect to have some alone time, nor did I expect to have any free time to shower but, all in all, we created good memories.

Things I learned in this trip could be written in a book but this is a post about lollipops.  Let’s go back to 2009 when I visited Scotland (swoon, sigh, and nostalgic music). I loved every second in Edinburgh and my husband and I would go to St. Giles cathedral and order from their great selection of tarts. I would walk by everyday and see these big pieces of fudge staring at me. I mean, they would look at me walk by, like the Mona Lisa, I tell you!  There was a specific light brown piece which would practically beg to be bought but I never did thinking I’d come back for it.

I never did. (Heartbreaking, tears flowing down my face)

Do you understand, I never did.  I never got that piece of fudge and since 2009 and I regret it everyday!  I never knew what it tasted like, never knew how it would or wouldn’t crumble on my tongue, and I would never know its flavor.

And why’s that? Because I postponed buying it until the day I would travel and to my surprise St. Giles was closed.

Fast forward to 2017. My husband and I were pushing our children in their strollers in the airport and my three year old passes by a big lollipop and says he wants it.

We were running late and my husband refused so we went on.  The light brown fudge popped into my mind and gave me a knowing look, I knew what I had to do.

I held my ground and told my husband that we must buy it or else (OK, not really, I just offered to pay for the overpriced candy) and he lovingly obliged.

We were very late, my husband was very angry, but I got my little boy his candy so it doesn’t haunt him (and me) for the next ten years.

When on vacation, buy your lollipop.

School Life is Imaginary

Imaginary

We all know that dreams occur when we’re fast asleep.  So when we are expected to wake up at 5:00 a.m. to get ready for school, some of our dreams are still lingering in our heads.  We manage to pull the energy to get dressed and, in good days, style our hair in a bun other than a high ponytail and we’re off to go.
Life, as we know it, exists within the school premises.  Life, all of life, is what we see, what we learn, who we hang out with, and on weekends, who we go out with.  We spend at least eight hours a day with our fellow classmates (and thus our BFFs forever!) and never reconsider another way of life.
Why is that?
Because it is very rare that social circles are beyond our school life.  We get to meet children from other schools when we play against them in our Junior Varsity and Varsity teams but it usually never advances to friendships.  We are mostly lazy, sticking with our childhood friends because we forgot how to make new friends and thus end up with that girl who just so happened to be sitting next to us in grade one.
How convenient.
Or if our parents are social butterflies, we befriend their children who, surprise surprise, probably go to our school as well because it’s “the best school there is.”
Then we get into groups.  People who like sports hang around with each other, people who play music, people who are technologically advanced, people who are technologically illiterate, cool kids, bad kids, popular kids, it’s all the same across schools and countries.  So you hate certain people, and like certain people.  And that’s the way it goes until the big day.
Graduation day.
You’ve been preparing all your life for this moment (this is probably the most used sentence in graduation speeches, alongside “we’ve done it”), and you’ve looked forward towards wearing that graduation gown and walking down the aisle.  You’ve discussed it a million times with your friends and were so anxious that you didn’t realize the car crash afterwards.  (sadly, a group of girls who graduated with me had a car crash but fortunately we didn’t lose anyone.)
The car crash called life.
Your close friends met your parents and so it’s no surprise when they meet them again in the ceremony.  It’s the other kids who turn all weird.  All of a sudden, that mean boy has parents.  Huh.  He has parents who kinda look like him and who, surprisingly, are very proud of his achievements even though they’re not so impressive.  BAM… Life…
A close friend decides to ignore you and concentrate on her family.  BAM… Life…
A girl who totally ignored you for the past five years comes up and takes a picture with you.  BAM… Life…
A guy who had a crush on you decides to introduce you to his mother who looks at you knowingly. BAM… Life…
People who didn’t really deserve the high achievement reward gets it and you wonder if there’s any foul play related.  BAM… Life…
And you walk in a haze… everything you once knew is completely gone.  Everything you thought was life is imaginary… everyone who walked on the school grounds suddenly is connected to people… It’s like a mind map of who knows who and who knows what and what money is being transferred to pull strings…
Then you realize, your college application could have gone through if only you had the money to “donate” and get into the amazing college of your dreams.  BAM… Life…
Life as you know it does not end within the school premises, life is what your parents have been trying to shelter you from because it’s a cruel cruel world for kids like you…
So be prepared to swim with the sharks, little fish.

Infused With Love- Ramadan

Infuse

momِ

As we enter the Muslim’s holy month of Ramadan, we look forward to the great blessings that are bestowed upon us every year and which we thank the Lord for as we are reminded of them daily.  We are reminded of the poor’s feelings of starvation through our fasting and thus we thank the Lord for our financial status which enables us to purchase the basic foods, at least, that will allow us to sleep with full bellies.

We are thankful for our families who are happily gathering around the table at the time of breaking our fast and we are reminded of the many people who have lost their loved ones (may God bless and have mercy on their souls.)

We are thankful for not being at war.  For having shelter above our heads and peace in our minds before our bodies.

And also, we are thankful for our mothers.  Our mothers who look forward to this month to have us all sitting together as a family before we all got busy with our lives.  And I don’t know about you, but my mother shows her love through food.

 She infuses her dishes with love.  Every single dish coming out of her kitchen smells of her.  Every single dish has the sense of her soul.  She use all her senses combined to produce a vast array of dishes that are loved by us all.  She slaves away in the kitchen, replacing last year’s dish set with a brand new one as Ramadan’s blessings, just to make us smile.  And instead of resting while she fasts, she chooses to go the extra mile and make my brother his kebabs because he just loves them.

And as if that’s not enough giving, she hand picks mint from her herb garden to infuse it in our tea, alongside love.

A big thank you to my mother who had a tiring day, you make Ramadan what it is. xoxo

 

No Verbal Confirmation, Please

Verbal Confirmation

 

With children, you sometimes question your sanity.  If you were an outsider looking in, you will see the many repeated questions and the many ignored requests.  Let’s assume you want to ask your child what he would like to have for dinner.  You start by asking like a normal human being.

“What would you like for dinner?”

No answer.

You decide that maybe he didn’t hear you, so you raise your voice a notch.

“Hey, what would you like for dinner?”

Still nothing.

This may go on a few times before you realize that your child isn’t even looking in your direction, so you remember that you should probably try to grab his attention by gently putting your hand on him.  Finally, eye contact.  So you ask again, repeating the question using a normal volume then raising your voice a little bit.  He squirms away, you walk behind him strong, thinking that you’re the mom, you are putting the rules.  He’s not the boss of me, you say to yourself.  He runs, you walk a bit faster.  A few more minutes of this and it turns to a full on game of chase.

Who’s the boss now?

You throw your hands up shouting that this is not a game so your kid says fine but nothing else.  You ask again and get nothing.

You wonder next whether you need to be facing your child when asking so you try that.  It takes some effort but you finally have eye contact.  You look into his eyes and suddenly all his childhood years fly by but no!  You will not succumb to his cuteness.

So you ask, slowly and making sure to articulate each letter: “What would you want to have for dinner.”

It’s happening.  You have eye contact, you see that your kid is listening to you, and then the dreaded answer comes: “anything”.

Scoff, because making “anything” means he will eat “anything,” isn’t it?

With children, looking at the many times I ran around like a headless chicken I salute myself.  I salute myself for closing the door on my finger and for knocking my head into the cupboard for no reason, all in the same morning.  I salute you, mothers, for being able to decipher your child so that no verbal confirmation is needed, you only need to be there to read the clues.

So you end up making some pasta, knowing that he’d eat it… and he does.

Verbal confirmation is not for mothers, they are telepathic,

 

Taking Control- Who’s Pulling Your Strings?

strings

Control

We like to think that we have “everything under control” and that the time spent doing things not on the top of our priority list is an actual choice we made.  Ha!  Wake up and smell the coffee.  Who is really pulling your strings?

Values and preconceptions have been embedded in out minds from a young age and seldom do we question their validity.  We do not question why our parents raised us a certain way and why they enrolled us in a certain school.  We take it as a given that they were and always will be looking out for our best interests.  Now let’s assume that somebody’s parents were selfish people who couldn’t care less what he did in school and who he’s hanging around with.  Does it mean that the strings they are supposed to hang on to and care for get thrown down for anyone to pick up?  Yes, that’s precisely what it means.

If parents are not there to “pull their children’s strings” before the children are all grown up and can pull their own strings, someone bigger and probably not wiser will be more than happy to control them.  Watch out for your kids.

Alright, back to you.  Now after we as children were being controlled by our parents’ values and limits, we quickly graduated to have the school teachers have some control.  This control doesn’t necessary mean it’s bad, on the contrary, it means that we still need some guidance before the time is right and we’re ready to fly from the best.-

The issue lies when we are introduced to a bigger circle.  Friends included in a bigger social circle, the society and its many different ideologies, sometimes religion and people who represent it, celebrities, people with big names, people with no names, your neighbor, your local milk man, anybody can hold your strings and control you when you least know it.  What can you do?  Don’t allow it.

Don’t allow anyone to take control.  Hold your own strings and stand your ground in regards to your beliefs.  You may be surprised that one day you will turn from being the puppet to being the puppet master.

Influence, do not let people influence you

Lead, do not be satisfied with being led.

Make your own mark, find your own voice, and speak.  Believe in yourself: you are your number one everything.  Do not allow yourself to be controlled

Control, who’s really holding your strings?

Asking SIRI- A Life Lesson

siri

We all know that sometimes it’s easier to talk to SIRI than actually going through the whole swish the finger across, swish it again, tap, and get what you want (we are a generhation who took the word lazy to a totally different level).  SIRI uses voice recognition to follow commands given by the owner of the IPhone/Ipad/Ipod and other I-related products.  For more information about what SIRI is, google SIRI wikipedia.

Last week, my five year old niece comes up to me and asks, “Can I talk to your phone?”  I didn’t quite understand her and was like huh?  She said, can I talk to your phone for a bit?  Her mom tells me from across the room that her daughter wants to talk to SIRI so I tell her to go ahead.  I was having a nice cup of tea and didn’t really need my phone so I didn’t think I would miss it.

A few minutes later, I hear my niece screaming, “I SAID SING A SONG!”  over and over again, louder and louder each time.  What she didn’t realize, though, was she wasn’t changing her command and when she does, it is very minimal.  I totally ignored her for the next ten minutes and then started worrying about my battery.  Luckily, she managed to get SIRI to “sing a song” which was basically just playing a random song from my music playlist.  She was beaming!  I took the phone away.

My three year old son wanted to, obviously, copy his “amazing older cousin” so he came and said, “mama can I use your phone?  I want it to sing for me.”  Which is very adorable because it sounded like he wanted someone to sing him a good night song.  I let him have my phone and he, come to think of it, knew how to get SIRI working.  Hmmm, I just realized this now.  Anyway, I told him, “Tell her play a song SIRI” and he did.  He was ecstatic and went to show his cousin who was surprised.

I got to hear how she doesn’t have a SIRI in her Ipad (it’s probably an older model) and how her mom’s SIRI isn’t working.  So today she comes up and asks to talk to SIRI again, please just for five minutes, ok three minutes, pleeeeease.  And I give in.  She picks the phone and before she says anything I say, “if you want her to play music don’t ask her to sing a song, ask her to play music.” and she did.  She didn’t have to scream, she didn’t have to waste her energy, she didn’t have to waste battery life, and she knew what she needed to ask to get her required result.

What we learn from this is

  1. when you want to ask for something, identify exactly what it is that you want and ask for it clearly and precisely.
  2. If you use the exact same words to ask for something, do not expect different outcomes at different times.  This expectation is known as insanity according to Einstein (doing the same thing over and over again expecting different results).
  3. You will not get different results when you shout, you will only get a headache.
  4. Kids will get what they want when adults are having a tea break
  5. Sometimes when copying a cousin, you still need to listen to your mom for directions

Pause and Forget

Pause

prison

All you need is one second.  A pause where you can regain your strength.  A pause to gather your nothingness into the empty shell of the person you once were.  All you need is a pause to stop your tears from flowing.  A pause to get out of the reality of darkness to the fantasy people call life.

A pause.

A pause to push back the monster eating your insides, to stop your knees from buckling under you, and to avert your eyes from the innocent eyes of the children who see all.  You smile in defiance of the energy building inside you.  The volcano of anger banging in your head anticipating a chance to erupt.  A pause is all it takes to put things into perspective, into the control you learned so long ago to master.

A pause.

To turn your inner shell into a happy smile.  A soulless puppet you always were, reluctant to move its limbs without the guidance of the puppeteer.  A pause to gather your wisdom and hide away the strings attached, no strings attached.

A pause is all it takes to stop yourself from crumbling.  From losing yourself into yourself and from seeing the true you.  A pause to put on the mask, to stop the tears and start the smile.  A pause to calm the tempest you so adore.  The tempest that makes you who you are: filled with anger, rage, passion.  A pause is all it takes to forget yourself and succumb to the chains of your imprisonment.

A pause.

 

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