Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Ramadan 2016-What's new in the shoe.

So as you all know by now I have MS. Alhumdullilah though, I've been able to fast. I recently read an article about a woman who couldn't. MS is a tricky disease it presents differently in different people and it fluctuates in different ways too. Everyone needs to take their own situation into consideration and of course consult their doctor if necessary. Lots of non-Muslim doctors have a knee-jerk reaction to fasting in general so you might want to consider asking a Muslim doctor.

Another great piece of news is that I have started a new dawah initiative; spreading Islam through my Little Free Library. I got this idea 2 years ago and then commissioned a carpenter to do it last year but it took a year for it to get done due to his unforeseen complications. Alhumdullilah its done in time for Ramadan this year and I am so grateful and just tickled pink. Yes its pink :)

A few years ago I gave out boxes for Ramadan in order to do dawah and this year my teenage daughter wanted to do it again so from her own funds she has gone out and purchased more supplies to make it happen again insha Allah.

I've also set up a convert iftar again for the 3rd year in a row. May this help the converts to feel included and helped with our new welcome boxes. (New Muslim Care). 

What's new for you this Ramadan?

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Nobody Cares?

So the other day we got to talking about me and what I want to do with my life and I said writing of course and they said you should have a blog, and I told them I already have one. Then they said I can't just write about my life, nobody cares! What???!!! Harsh! Ok, I guess if you want to make money you have to pander to the majority, the trends etc. I'm not the kind of person to follow the lowest common denominator. I could care less about what most people care about lately like hijab tutorials or recipes (I have a few but certainly not obsessed). They were not impressed with my opinion. You see the reason I studied Advertising instead of Journalism is because I wanted to be creative. I didn't want people dictating what I could and could not write about. I like to be free to choose my own topics and present them the way I see fit, regardless if anyone is interested on a large scale. Even if I have to find a niche group that is fine. So I won't make millions I guess but I want to be true to myself in the end. I don't want to be a sellout. Not even for sales. So where does that leave me? Right here, I guess. But my intention is to write books because I love to and because so many people have told me I should, people from all walks of life. I'm sure there are people out there who are looking for a fresh voice and will CARE!

Thursday, March 31, 2016

Old Grandma in the shoe for the 5th time!

Last night my son, my oldest, had a daughter (well my daughter-in-law did). This is their second daughter. For me its my fifth granddaughter. Good thing I don't have to fit them in the shoe too,lol. One day I will have more grandchildren than children which is an obvious thought but still mind-blowing to me. Alhumdullilah, masha Allah. May she grow up to be a righteous Muslimah and be the coolness of her parents eyes and be granted Jannah. Amin.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Nothing But Love - Book Review

Zaneefa Zaneer is the author of this new soon-to-be released title. Previously she was the author of Let Me Bloom and Rhythm of Love published in Sinhalese. Her new book is published in English.

Nothing But Love is set in Sri Lanka and follows the story of A.B. as she deals with her past and with her new future as a wife by name only. What has brought her to this point in her life? And what about her new husband, why is he settling for a sham marriage? This book will take you on a roller coaster of emotions dealing with topics like being an orphan,widowhood, wearing niqab,secrets, missed communication and misunderstandings.

This author's style is reminiscent of Umm Zakiyyah's. If you've ever read her books you will understand what I mean. Her books are good,clean,Islamic fiction but try to focus on real life problems.

I really felt the emotions of the characters in this book and enjoyed reading it. The only advice I gave to Zaneefa, was to include more information about Sri Lanka for readers who are not familiar with the country, such as myself. These updates may be in the final release.

If you are looking for a new, Muslimah author to read, then consider the book Nothing But Love, soon to be released on Amazon.com.

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

SEO or no?

I'm taking an SEO course now, mainly because its what everyone in my field (Advertising) is supposed to know. This is my only webpage and seeing as it doesn't generate an income, its kind of not important for me to take this course right now, but if I ever get around to writing a book and having a website for it, then these techniques would be important for me to know. The course for me is a snore, but maybe because I just keep reading and not applying the knowledge really. At least I know I could never imagine myself doing this for a living, just like the Microsoft courses I took last year, although all knowledge is beneficial. I think I just basically want to write and leave all the technical stuff to the experts which isn't practical when you can't pay said experts. Hmm...there's always Go Fund Me right? Well, maybe I should just focus and buckle down and write. Yes, I said it before. Well, at least I am writing pieces for our local anthology, so I am not getting too rusty.

How about you? Have you taken SEO? Have you applied it to your webpage? Or do you do it for a
living?

Update :April 1st. Just completed the course. Its not my cup of tea, still can't see myself doing it for a living but I'm happy to be more knowledgeable now in this area. Its a lot of work that's for sure. 

Sunday, January 31, 2016

10 Things I Hate About Me-Mother-Daughter book review.

Years ago I read this book and shared my review with you and now my teenage daughter has read it and written a review on her blog. Please read both and let us know your thoughts. Have you read it? Would you read it? Do you agree with either of us? Have you ever read the same book as your child?



Swimming in words.

I've taken 4 online writing courses now and am feeling overwhelmed. I need to take a breather. But maybe I can't ; still books to read about writing ie memoir writing. Phew.

 Suddenly, also, there are writing courses for Muslims, but at a price. I watched some webinars for Zarinah's course; she wrote Jihad of the Soul which looked interesting and had lots of free tidbits. Ribaat is offering one also which has already started.

 I need to finish off these how-to books and review my courses and then buckle down and actually write something. But wait! I'm supposed to have an intention, oh,whoops? You mean cathartic exercise is not a sufficient goal? I have a lot of self-reflection to do and probably istikharah prayers. Writing is a very serious endeavour and lives on long after you are gone. May Allah purify our intentions and lead us to create a masterpiece for the sake of Allah. Amin.

Have you written a book? What's your advice?

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Think outside the GTA box!

A little pet peeve I have which was resurrected once again at RIS (Reviving the Islamic Spirit) is, people from GTA (Greater Toronto Area) who are not aware of any cities outside their area! Where are you from they ask, which city are you coming from etc is the question and each time when I tell them their eyes glaze over. I try to help them by telling them how far south it is compared to Toronto and even that it is near the border which leads them to say oh, you live in United States! SubhanAllah can someone please buy a map for the people of the GTA? Or introduce them to Google Maps or get them a GPS or an atlas...anything! When I lived up north and I traveled to the GTA and told them where I was from, they would always say oh, north of Barrie? That was always their absolute cutoff. As for being south of the GTA, well you better not live any further than Kitchener and if you are super lucky then they might know London (Ontario of course!). Beyond that is no man's land, a veritable hinterland. Some of them know Windsor though because if they want to get to the States (where I don't live..sigh) then they have crossed the border there. I think all people in the GTA should be forced to take a geography course of at least Ontario, if not the rest of Canada. For sure I guess they know Ottawa (it is the capital of Canada after all and also right here in Ontario) and Montreal and Vancouver. Not much else exists though. What can we do for our lost sisters and brothers in the GTA? Oh and did I also mention that they think big cities are towns? Yes, you live in a mega city but that doesn't mean that smaller cities in comparison to you, are towns. I guess a town would be a village to them. I dare anyone from the GTA who is reading this or perhaps your friend who knows less than you ahem to take out a map of Ontario and gaze down BELOW Kitchener-Waterloo and then gaze ABOVE Barrie and discover new cities! For those really brave souls, you can also plan a trip somewhere new, outside the GTA box! I dare you!

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Finding My Voice

Tonight was the night I shared my writing with my writing club. It really was the first time I shared my writing out loud with anyone, besides speeches I gave in school so many eons ago.
I had no idea what they would think regarding my topic or my writing talent or lack thereof. All I could do was read and share my outlook on the world and wait and see how they would react to it. It was very silent and then I got to one part and found myself overcome and had to stop. I apologized, but they said that it happens to everyone when they read at one time or another. I felt validated and then the leader of the group finished off my piece for me as I quickly composed myself. In the end they said they liked it and the leader told me to keep writing and that this story was definitely going to be in the anthology. I felt like I had come home. Birds of a feather really do flock together, but sometimes, you just need to find them.

Saturday, November 7, 2015

STOP THE PRESSES: My third daughter has a new blog! Young Muslim Girl in the Shoe.

Nope, I didn't come up with the name. She did all this when I wasn't around. Love how it ties into my name choice. So if you want to read about how it feels to be the daughter of the Old Muslim Woman in the Shoe and how it feels to be a half Malay Canadian teen growing up in Canada then go to her blog now! Tell your teen daughters too! Then come back here and tell me what you think ;) Now I have 2 daughters blogging. Check out her blog here.

And if you want to read my other daughter's blog, the oldest one with the 3 kids then go here. In case you forgot, I have 5 daughters and 5 sons. Masha Allah.

Monday, November 2, 2015

Writing Club? Write on!

So remember when I told you about  the woman who told me she had no time for a book club because she was taking 4 Gale Writing courses? Well she also told me about a writing club, well actually two. One in a town about 20 minutes from me which I went to once but then she told me there was actually one in my town and gave me the email. But no one answered my email. So what to do? Then an article appeared in the local paper mentioning a writing club and the one running it was the one I emailed! So I got in contact with the place that runs the club and was told that they were meeting that very night! Did I just write 3 sos? Forgive me. I know that's wrong. Anyway, I grabbed my beautiful writing book that my daughter ; Handmade Beginnings made for me for Eid, and headed on down! I was a little late since I had to do my prayer first but when I arrived I saw that they had a special guest who was telling them how they could get their anthology published finally. I also have to submit a piece too for the book apparently,ahem,so nice of you to ask. Now I have to think about something to write about. You've been following my blog right? In your humble opinion, what would be the best topic for me to write on?

Sunday, October 18, 2015

His Book and My book.

Now that all of my kids are going to school, I have time to focus on myself. Before September came I signed myself up for an Arabic class. My sole reason for this was to learn the language of the Quran. It is really disappointing to not fully understand what is going on when you are reading Quran or saying your prayers and spending time in the mosque. For example I never know whether they are reciting Quran or saying a dua at the mosque. Feeling like a stranger in your own religion is a very painful thing to go through. So to rectify this I signed up for Arabic1a with Rabata. If you are unfamiliar with them, they are a group of sisters mainly a sister; Anse Tamara (a convert like me) who studied in Syria then started this online portal of Islamic learning. Arabic 101 was too easy for me as I already know my letters and basically how to read so I chose the next level. Its been a few weeks now and there are two classes per week including grammar and vocabulary. At first I was literally getting headaches and the teacher said its normal when learning a new language. It never happened to me before when learning other languages though. This is really intense for me I guess. Another strange thing is that sometimes now I think of random Arabic sentences. This is amazing to me since I only just started learning.

The second kind of learning I am doing kind of fell in my lap! I asked a woman from the mosque if she would be interested in starting a book club and she said she had no time! She said she had just signed up for 4 writing courses. I expressed an interest and she said I could sign up too and that they were free through the library website! My library doesn't offer these courses sadly, but, my old library does in the city I used to live in. I still have my card from that library and our town has privileges with theirs so I signed up. These courses are offered through Gale.  The course I am taking now is Writing for Children. I also signed up for 3 other courses. This course has homework just like my Arabic course so I am very busy now with that and like I mentioned in the last post, teaching the kiddies in the mosque. Sadly though we still have no book club at the mosque.

So insha Allah one day with Allah's help I will be able to understand the language of the Quran and also write a book of my own.

A little bonus for my hubby was that when I went to the library I saw a bookmark there advertising another Gale resource; CHILTON. If you are a car enthusiast you will know what I'm talking about but if not it refers to the repair manuals used for cars. He has already used it to fix the power locks in our van. Alhumdullilah.

My First Arabic PhrasesBook I borrowed from the library (not part of Rabata) which has proved useful.