Monthly Archives: May 2014

spiritual retreat

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Greetings everyone! Hope all good! My girls and I have just returned from a 3 day spiritual retreat in the countryside, it’s been really memorable. This is the second time I’ve been to  such a retreat, however this one was for women only. With the holy month of Ramadan dawning upon us Muslims (end of June this year), I feel that the retreat was timely indeed. I was also at the point where I badly needed to recharge my batteries, it’s so easy to be consumed with worldly affairs and neglect your spiritual development. The retreat also included leisure activities ran by the centre where it was held, my 3 girls had a wonderful time having a go at archery, big bounce and the challenge course. Food and accommodation were also part of the package, we had a lovely view from our bedroom (with en-suite) of the surrounding scenic countryside.

As usual I’ve snapped several photos to share with you here, so that you can have a glimpse of my experience. I hope to continue to improve myself from the words of wisdom I’ve learnt at the retreat. I still have a long way to go yet to become a Muslim with admirable traits, like our Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), who was of tremendous character. In Islam, the person who is best in character is best in faith. Good character can raise a Muslim’s status to the highest level even though his religious deeds may not be much. I’ve also included a moving video clip at the end, of a simple example of  noble character, and how one good turn deserves another. The old man who’s always been kind and generous to the children was rewarded a trip to perform pilgrimage to Mecca/Medinah (once in a lifetime duty for a Muslim), something which he’d always aspired to but couldn’t attain due to insufficient means. Till next time folks, take good care okay! 🙂

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rapeseed field

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Life is not lived in the past, neither is it lived wandering in future. Life is for today, and it is today. Live it, love it, see it, and show how capable you are of everything you wish to achieve. Enjoy this beautiful day! Always thank God for life…the simple fact you’re still breathing and smiling!

Greetings everyone! How are you all? I’m currently enjoying the last day of our Spring heatwave before the rain pours down on us again. The weather’s been good, Alhamdulillah. We’ve been enjoying the garden (I’ve mowed our lawn twice!), we even managed a couple of barbeques already. As usual I’ve been taking lots of photos as I go about my daily life, but these days I just find it difficult to find the time to blog as often as I’d like to. Never mind, I do what I can! This post is actually about the rapeseed field I discovered not too far away from where a friend lives. I only see her once in a blue moon so I suppose the field wouldn’t have been noticeable during other seasons. But it is bright yellow in Spring, one can’t help but notice it!

I managed to get close enough to snap some photos, I couldn’t venture to the middle though for fear of trespassing. Nonetheless, I am quite satisfied with the few photos I managed to capture via my mobile phone, I don’t always carry my camera with me. I’ve always wanted to take photos of a rapeseed field, this one is the closest one to me and easily accessible. The rest are often seen as we drive along the countryside roads/dual carriageways/motorways at 50-80 miles per hour! Anyway, hope you will like them. It was a bright sunny day when I took the pictures, I remember feeling really happy, it certainly lifted my spirits up. Till next time then folks, take good care! 🙂

Somehow this song came to mind as I was admiring the beautiful landscape, hope you will enjoy it too!

mother’s love

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It was Mother’s Day in Malaysia yesterday, over here in the UK it was celebrated back in March. I don’t think I can ever blog enough about my mother, the woman who means the world to me. I have arrived at the stage in my life where I feel really close to my mother. Perhaps you might find that ironic considering the fact that she’s 6,500 miles away from me! I’m very much like my mother in many ways, therefore we clashed a lot whilst I was growing up. I was head strong and so was she, my late dad was the one I turned to at times when my mom failed to understand me. I realised now that she always had my best interest at heart, but because we were so much alike in character and personality, we found it hard to communicate effectively.

It’s rather different now, for the past 2 decades since I’ve become a wife and mother myself our relationship has improved in more ways than one. I think we’ve both changed as people as we age further, which leads to better understanding and acceptance of one another. I used to favour my late dad more as a parent; he was the sensitive, emotional and caring one, always there with a warm hug, the one I could talk to and vice versa. But I know now that it’s my mother who I needed most (especially now); I value her advice, wisdom and prayers more than ever. As I raise my 4 children I realised that my mom treated my 2 younger sisters and I differently because each child is unique, not because she favours one over the other. Being the eldest I used to resent how my mom paid more attention to my younger sisters as we were growing up. I know now it’s not because she loved me any less, but because she felt that I was very independent (I was at boarding school since 13). I could go on and on about my relationship with my mother, I could write on forever.

In a nutshell however, let’s just say that I’m truly glad that I’ve reached this point where I totally understand and accept my mother for who she is. And vice versa of course. I know she misses me and my family and wished we were geographically closer. But I also know it would break her heart if I was round the corner from her but depressed in my life. As reluctant as she was when she agreed to let me marry a ‘foreigner’ almost 2 decades ago, I know she is at peace when it comes to me because I am happy where I am, with my beloved husband and children. And that is what a loving mother wishes for her dear daughter, to be blessed and content in her life. Thank you Mama for your endless love and prayers, I will never be able to repay you for all that you’ve done for me, I am eternally grateful. You are the most wonderful woman I’ve ever met, I am proud to be your daughter forever. My family and I miss and love you so very much, may we meet again sometime soon, InshaAllah. Happy Mother’s Day to you and all other beautiful moms out there. ❤ ❤

my mother during her youth

my mother in her youth

my mother in her 7th decade

my mother in her 7th decade

 

 

spring pleasures

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 For happiness one needs security, but joy can spring like a flower even from the cliffs of despair.Anne Morrow Lindbergh

Expect to have hope rekindled. Expect your prayers to be answered in wondrous ways. The dry seasons in life do not last. The spring rains will come again.
Sarah Ban Breathnach

Below are several images that’s made me happy during this beautiful Spring season. It doesn’t matter how busy life is, or how tough, as long as you can find some peace in nature. Always steal a moment to enjoy the sunshine, listen to the birdsong, the rustling of leaves, smell the damp grass, have a rhythm in your heart! Relish in nature’s simple pleasures!! These days more often than not I find peace and happiness through nature, material things tend to bore me a little. Family love is paramount of course, my household however a rather chaotic one with 4 children to attend to! History has always fascinated me, there’s so much you can learn from the past. That’s me in a nutshell, halfway through my worldly life… 🙂

the secret garden

peace and tranquility

cherry blossoms special at this time

lovely being outdoors

landscape lovely after a spot of rain

building behind me over 300 years old!

 The 4 seasons reflected in this song!