Friday, April 30, 2010

Sisters Who Blog Magazine

Sisters Who Blog has now started a new feature; an online magazine. For their first edition I am featured or I should say my book review is. Please check it out here. She has also added a nice youtube video to compliment the article. Thanks Amber for highlighting my blog book review this week.

Monday, April 26, 2010

The Faith Club

May is almost here and if you are having trouble finding The Faith Club at your library then why not order it from Amazon? This book is about a Muslim, a Christian and a Jew searching for understanding. There's also a section about how to start your own faith club.

You can contact me!

I finally created a new email that you can use to contact me. Perhaps you have some questions you'd like to ask or if there are any advertisers out there who would like to have ads on my blogs or offer giveaways then you can also query me. Just check out my profile. Better late than never eh? Hope you are all enjoying the blog so far!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Earth Day -School vs Homeschool

On Thursday my kids who go to school told me they cleaned up the schoolyard. It was really no surprise because they do this every year. As for my daughter and I and the 2 preschoolers we went to Walmart and bought some potting soil and a new pot and went outside and repotted our houseplant that was outgrowing its little home after 3 yrs. We also picked up some seeds for the garden we plan to plant this year. Dd picked out flower seeds and I picked out some too and made sure they were the cut flower types. We also got carrot,radish,cucumber,watermelon,cantaloupe,lettuce and pea seeds. I also explained to my daughter that most people start planting outdoors on the Victoria weekend to avoid frost or otherwise you can start seedlings in your home. With our space problems and large family though we will be waiting. How was your earth day?

Monday, April 19, 2010

Mommy, read to me!

If you have little kids you probably read to them every night before bed but what about older kids? Of course they are old enough to read to themselves but even big kids benefit from a tale told aloud. The last thing I read aloud to my older kids and they actually love it is, Signs before the day of Judgement. Kids want to know what they might have to deal with in the future. Another great choice is The Muslim Family Reader. Looking for more titles I turned to the expert to get suggestions. Some books on her list are already in my home or have been borrowed from the library before but many were new to me and will be ordered in the future, insha Allah. So here is her list. Insha Allah you will find something to read to your own child or something they would like to read to themselves. Jazakullah Saara for taking the time to compile this list for me.

Books recommended for Reading Aloud (ages 9 – 13)

Compiled by Saara, Editor – Guide to Muslim Children’s Books and Media

April 2010

The Meat Eating Vegetarian by Caroline Maryam Ward.

The Islamic Foundation, 2001. 44 pages. ISBN 0860373061.

Tasneem is a Muslim girl who has just moved to a new school. She quickly becomes firm friends with two girls in her class. They are puzzled by the fact that she doesn’t ever take any meat in her school lunches. They believe Tasneem is vegetarian until they are invited for dinner at her house and they all eat lamb burgers. And why wasn’t she wearing her hijab at home? In this book the issues of Halal meat and Islamic dress requirements are explored in the relationship between Tasneem and her two non-Muslim friends.

Type: Fiction

Age: 8 – 11 years

Rashid and the Missing Body by Hassan Radwan.

The Islamic Foundation, 2001. 80 pages. ISBN 0860373959.

Rashid and his friends find themselves unexpectedly caught in the middle of a scam. When they stumble upon a body at the park they embark on a detective hunt to find who the person is. In the process we learn of how Rashid and his family live an Islamic life, the value of truth and good morals.

Type: Fiction - Mystery

Age: 10 – 15 years

The BFF Sisters. Jennah’s New Friends by Suzy Ismail

Amana Publications, 2001. 64 pages.

Jennah makes friends with girls her age but whose families come from different parts of the world. Can they get along together? Deciding to stop assuming things and being jealous, Jennah forms a girls club called the BFF Sisters. Through this club the girls share and develop their personal experiences while exchanging their knowledge of Islam. A short novel that would appeal to all girls who know what forming new friends is all about.

Type: Fiction

Age: 9 – 11 years

Umar and the Bully by Shabana Mir.

The Islamic Foundation, 1998. 44 pages. ISBN 0860372960.

This is a short novel that tackles the problem of bullying among children in schools. The book presents a perfect opportunity for parents and teachers to read and discuss what bullying is, why it is wrong and how to go about dealing with it. Another theme worth discussing is the way in which Umar turns to Allah for help each step of the way. This coupled with his common sense results in a resolution to the bullying problem.

Type: Fiction

Age: 8 – 12 years

The Visitors (Book one of the Islamic Rose series) by Linda Delgado.

Muslim Writers Publishing, 2005. 172 pages. ISBN 9780976786115

The Visitors by Linda D. Delgado is the first book in the Islamic Rose Book series. This is a unique novel for it looks at Islam and Muslims from the non Muslims point of view. In this novel we meet the delightful Rose, an eager, quick thinking, nine-year-old girl. She is being brought up by her father with the benefit of the support and company of her grandparents who live next door.

Set in Arizona, U.S.A., the book opens with Rose who is excited to meet her grandmother’s guest, a police officer from Saudi Arabia. Her father isn’t very keen on Rose’s involvement in the preparations her grandmother is making or in getting to know the newcomer. One of the themes of the book is cultural appreciation and as such we see the contrast in Rose’s openness to learn about the Arab and Muslim culture of the visitor and her father’s reluctance to make acquaintance with them.

Throughout the book, Rose’s entries in her journal are shared with readers. She writes about what she learning about Islam as well as about her relationship with her father. We sense Rose’s confusion as she plots and makes many plans to get her father to know the police officers but to no avail. That is until she comes up with a unique plan that works, bringing the book to a very touching end.

Type: Fiction

Age: 10-13 years

Muslim Poems for Children by Mymona Hendricks

The Islamic Foundation, 1996. 48 pages. ISBN 0860372189

Muslim Poems for Children by Mymona Hendricks is a collection of twenty poems for children between the ages seven and thirteen. The poems are about a variety of Islamic topics including the pillars of Islam (e.g. salah (prayer), hajj and fasting); Islamic identity, the Quran, brotherhood and parents.

The poems are written in a very simple form and rhyme. They are especially good for reading aloud. Children will find the rhymes easy to memorise. In the classroom or home, the poems could form part of an Islamic studies lesson plan.

The collection features short excerpts from Quran or hadeeth at the end of several poems. Photographs of children engaged in various daily routines and Islamic duties are interspersed throughout the collection. A glossary of Islamic terminology is included at the end.

Type: Poetry

Age: 7 – 12 years

The Poor woman and the Bread (Upright Series 1) by Umar Salim.

Al-Hidaayah Publishing & Distribution, 2001. 13 pages. ISBN 1898649448.

This book is one of eight in the Upright Series 1 collection of stories by Al-Hidaayah Publishing & Distribution. Each book in the series is an illustrated translation of an authentic hadeeth (saying of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). Other titles in the series include: Al-Khadir and the Begger; The Kind Man and the Thirsty Dog; Safeena; The Story of the Leper, the Bald and the Blind; The King, the Boy and the Sorcerer; The Monkey and the Wine Merchant; and The Story of 1000 Dinars & The Man and the Gold.

Type: Non Fiction

Age: 7 – 12 years

The Mothers of three Prophets by Jameelah Jones.

Ta-Ha Publishers Ltd., 1994 (reprint 2001). ISBN 189794022X

The Mothers of three Prophets contain stories that narrate the lives of three phenomenal women. They are: Hajar, the mother of Ibrahim (alyahis salam); the mother of Musa (alyahis salam) and Maryam, the mother of Isa (alyahis salam).

These women are showcased not only because they were the mothers of three of Allah’s prophets but also because they were outstanding individuals. They possessed personalities, attitudes and approaches to life that we could all learn from.

The stories are told in a way that a child of eight should be able to read on his/her own. But I think the significance of the stories may be better understood by children who are a bit older (possibly 10 and up). The concepts of sacrifice, obeying and submitting ones will to Allah are conveyed throughout the book. Ayat (verses) of the Quran are woven seamlessly into the narration while emphasizing the importance of the situations described.

Apart from telling us the history of the prophets, this book is a tribute to all mothers and it teaches us how obedient we must be to Allah, despite hardship, fear of loss or being ashamed of ridicule.

Type: Non Fiction

Age: 7 – 13 years

In the Prophet’s Garden: A Selection of Ahadith for the Young complied by Fatima M D’Oyen and AbdelKader Chachi.

The Islamic Foundation, 2002. 118 pages. ISBN 086037372X.

This is a beautiful collection of ahadeeth on various Islamic topics including eman (faith), repentance, respect for elders, friendship, knowledge and good manners. The book includes stunning photos of nature and decorative borders that compliment the text.

Type: Non Fiction

Age: 9 – 16+ years

Tell Me About Prophet Musa by Saniyasnain Khan.

Goodword Books, 2003. 56 pages ISBN: 8187570482

This book is a fascinating look at the life of Prophet Musa using photos, maps, pictures of relics and captivating narration. It is great for Islamic studies lesson or just for general reading and discussion. A list of ayat of Quranic references is included at the end.

Other titles in the series are Tell Me about Prophet Yusuf, Tell me About Prophet Muhammad, Tell Me About the Hajj, and Tell Me about the Creation.

Type: Non Fiction

Age: 8+ years

Other books that might be good for reading aloud but which I have not personally read or reviewed include:

Ibrahim Khan and the Mystery of the Roaring Lion by Farheen Khan.

The Islamic Foundation, 2009. 51 pages. ISBN 9780860374671.

Type: Fiction - Mystery

Age: 7 – 10 years

A School Girls Hero by Umm Amina

The Islamic Foundation, 2009. 51 pages. ISBN 9780860374213

Type: Fiction

Age: 7 – 10 years

Ahmad Deen and the Curse of the Aztec Warrior by Yahiya Emerick.

Type: Fiction - Mystery

Age: 9-12 years

Ahmad Deen and the Jinn at Shaolin by Yahiya Emerick.

Type: Fiction - Mystery

Age: 9-12 years

Layla Deen and the Case of the Ramadan Rogue by Yahiya Emerick.

Type: Fiction - Mystery

Age: 8 – 12 years

Layla Deen and the Popularity Contest by Yahiya Emerick.

Type: Fiction

Age: 8 – 12 years

Isabella: a Girl of Muslim Spain by Yahiya Emerick.

Type: Fiction

Age: 9– 13 years

The Four Daughters of Yusuf the Dairy Farmer by Juwairiah J. L. Simpson

American Trust Publications, 1984. 40 pages. ISBN 0892590564.

Type: Fiction

Age: 10 – 15 years

The Princess who wanted to be Poor by Juwairiah J. L. Simpson

American Trust Publications, 1986. 52 pages.

Type: Fiction

Age: 10 – 15 years

A Great Friend of Children by M. S. Kayani

The Islamic Foundation, 2008. 45 pages. ISBN 978086037329.

Type: Fiction (stories based on hadeeth of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him)

Age: 7 – 13 years

Friday, April 16, 2010

Nursing Friendly Jilbabs

In case you didn't catch my comment on my dream jilbab post then check out this company's selection of nursing friendly jilbabs. I have my eye on the purple one, quelle suprise eh? But why oh why are all the nice nursing jilbabs only available in England? These English sisters really rock when it comes to islamic fashion. Which one do you like?

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Halal Products in Canada from Malaysia

I missed this flyer from RIS and just dug it out today. Its an online business that promises to deliver halal products to your door(in Canada) from Malaysia. Check it out here. The prices look super cheap but with added shipping it would be a lot different I'm sure. Malaysia is on the other side of the world after all. But it is a neat option considering we have so few halal items here in Canada. This is great for homesick Malaysians too (cough, cough, dh). You do have to become a member though. Need an incentive to join? How about a free trip? Saya nak balik kampung :)

Book Club Choice - May

To help you get ready for May's book choice I will post it now so that you can order it from your library or favourite bookstore. Next month's choice will be The Faith Club. This book is available at my library so I'm going to assume its as yours as well. Its not a brand new book either so it should be easy for you to get your hands on it. This is a great book because its not only about Muslims but also Christians and Jews. So I hope to see some non-muslim readers next month!

PS How do you like the new Book Of the Month button my daughter made for my blog? Thanks, honey!

Recipe Request (Tiga!) - Pandan Chiffon Cake

Kueh Pandan (Recipe taken from Easy Malaysian Style Cookery)

8 Eggs , separated
1 1/4 cups caster sugar (superfine sugar)
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 tsp vanilla essence (make sure to buy halal to avoid alcohol)
3/4 cup(180 ml) coconut milk
1/4 tsp pandan extract
1 cup self-raising flour
1 egg white
1 tsp cream of tartar

1. Beat the egg yolks, sugar,oil and essence ins a small bowl with electric mixer until combined. Beat in combined coconut milk and pandan extract.

2. Sift flour 3 times into large bowl, make well in centre, whisk egg mixture into flour.

3. Beat all egg whites in large bowl with electric mixer until frothy, add cream of tartar, beat until firm peaks from.

4. Fold egg whites into flour mixture in 2 batches using balloon whisk.

5. Carefully pour mixture into 21 cm ungreased tube pan; pull skewer through mixture to disperse bubbles. Bake in moderately hot oven (we did 350 F) about 45 minutes or until cake feels springy to touch ( we did it for one hour). Gently invert pan on bench. Do not move or bump pan until cake is completely cold (hide cake from kids!). Run a spatula around the side of the pan to release cake.

Serves 10
Recipe can be made a day ahead.
Storage: Airtight container.
Freeze: not suitable
Microwave: not suitable

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Requested Recipe- Jemput Pisang-Banana puffs

Jemput Pisang (recipe taken from Delicious Local Cakes and Kuih)

350 g plain flour (sifted)
200 g brown sugar
800 g ripe bananas (mashed)
oil for deep frying

1. Mix sifted flour with brown sugar and mashed bananas.

2. Heat up oil in a wok.

3. When oil is hot, drop tablespoons of banana mixture into it. Deep fry till kuih turns golden brown.

4. Remove from wok. Drain well on a paper towel.

5. Arrange kuih on a serving plate. Serve with palm sugar and grated white coconut. (we don't do this and I have no idea why you should..could be for dipping or something.)

Monday, April 12, 2010

Dream Jilbab

Alhumdullilah I'm slowly trying to wear jilbab. Problem is I only own 3 and besides the denim one I'm not so crazy about the other two. I've been looking on the net for my dream jilbab. Number one it has to be nursing friendly (like looking for a needle in a haystack). 2. It has to be in a nice colour, please no black or olive. Number one choice would be purple. Other pastel colours will do too. 3. It should have a hood. 4. It should be available from Canada. 5. It should be a-line so its easy to walk in. 6. It should be lightweight for the summer.

The choices available usually are black, black and more black. Or then there are the urban jilbabs which must be designed for teens because there are never any maternity or nursing ones. (by the way there are teen muslim moms so these should be revamped as well!) There are also jilbabs that are too tight to walk in. There are also too many polyester jilbabs although cotton is finally coming on to the scene. And why are all the button down or zipper jilbabs in dark dreary colours. The pretty colours are only for non-mothers I guess. Once you have a kid you have to dress in depressing colours. Who comes up with these rules? It reminds me of Malaysia when I was trying to find size 10 shoes; the biggest I could find was size 8 or 9 and they were all ugly. No cute colours, styles or flower decorations. So moms with big feet have to dress frumpy ok, got that?

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Recipe Request - Cari Pap (Curry Puffs)

Here is a recipe from Chef Wan's book Flavours Of Malaysia. This is not exactly how dh (Curry Puff Daddy) made them but it will give you a good idea.

600 gm all purpose flour
200 gm margarine or butter
1 tsp salt, dissolved in warm water
4 tbsp ghee
4 tbsp neat curry powder
200 gm minced chicken (you can use beef too or leave out for vegetarians)
500 gm potatoes,peeled and cubed
4 tbsp chapped coriander leaves (dh doesn't use this)
3 tbsp chopped spring onions (dh doesn't use this either)
salt to taste

3 shallots
2 cloves garlic
1/2 chopped onion
1 cm fresh ginger
Mince these last 4 ingredients finely.

1. Rub the flour with the margarine or butter in a bowl.

2. Add the salt water a little at a time.

3. Knead the mixture to form a soft, pliable dough.

4. Wrap the dough in cling-film and set aside for an hour.

5. Meanwhile, heat the ghee in a wok and fry the minced mixture till golden.

6. Add the curry powder and stir till fragrant.

7. Add the chicken, potatoes and enough water to cover the mixture and simmer.

8. Add the salt and cook the filling till dry.

9. Add the coriander leaves and spring onions and dish out the filling. Set aside to cool.

10. Roll the dough about 1/4 cm thick.

11. Using a round 10 cm (4 inch) cookie cutter, cut as many circles as possible from the dough.

12. Put a tablespoon of the filling onto each circle.

13.Join the edges and pleat them with your fingers or press with the tip of a fork.

14. Deep-fry the kari pap till golden.


Stay tuned for the next recipe: Jemput-Jemput .

Friday, April 9, 2010

Purple Princess!

I'm in love with this purple princess number. My oldest daughter (what would I do without her?) found this blog and sent me the link. This woman's outfits are so unique and creative and fun. Where would you wear these outfits though? A girl's party? I feel like ordering some just to have a party! How about a grad? My second oldest is graduating from high school this year insha Allah. In Toronto they have alternative proms for muslim girls. That would be awesome.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Earth Day

April 22nd is Earth Day. Have you made any plans for that day? In the past when I was a Muslim Girl Guide leader I got my troop to clean up the land around the mosque. But one activity I am really partial to probably because my mom was a Beaver leader and I got to go with them when they planted Trees for Canada is tree planting.(why not sponsor a local scout?) Or here is a site that has trees for sale; you can give them as a gift to a home owner (great housewarming present) or plant some yourself. Alternatively you can check out if your municipality offers free trees for planting in the spring. My county did and I got a lovely Ivory Silk Lilac. Alhumdullilah last year it bloomed for the first time. Why not plan a garden this year? Start buying your seeds now. Find out if your local food bank accepts donations of fresh veggies or think of others in the community who would benefit. Apartment dwellers would love some. Take a walk with your kids or go for a bike ride and remember to make use of the bike lanes and then go to a park and do a clean up. So many ideas and these are just a few. Feel free to add your own here. Have a great Earth Day, everyday! We are Allah's viceregents after all.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Black Seed

Recently I received some products from Sweet Sunnah black seed herbal.

Shop @

I just love their different soaps, facial cleansers, shampoos, creams not to mention their actual black seed oil. Prophet Muhammad said that black seed (habbatul barakah) is a cure for everything except death. We personally have used it for asthma, colds and earaches. Their soaps are great to stop breakouts on the skin as well. Check out the website to read all the testimonials.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Book of the Month Club

I have added a new link on the left hand side of my blog called Book of the Month Club. Please refer to this link to see current and past book club choices. Please comment on any books you have read. If you have any recommendations for future book club choices, then post it here. Thanks and happy reading.

April Book Club Choice -Turning the Tide

This month we'll be reading Turning The Tide. This is a book about the different stages in a woman's life (sorry guys).

Is there anybody out there? Since I've started my book club, I've had no feedback. I'll continue though in my delusion that someone is actually going to start joining, reading and posting feedback. Which goes back to one of my old muslims read? One thing I've noticed is that there is a ton of traffic coming to my site regarding Stones into Schools. Since no one comments though I'm assuming they are just trying to get a synopsis of the book. Probably they are disappointed though since its an islamic perspective and my suspicion is that all those coming to read it are non-muslims. I could be wrong though. But I'll never know since no one comments!

UFO's in the Quran

Yesterday I read UFO's in the Quran; finished it in one day. Its an easy read that will leave you uneasy. If you are familiar with UFO reports and sightings and watch a lot of programs about it (especially if you grew up during the 70's) then the first part of the book won't be too shocking for you. Even so there were some things that were new to me as well. The next part of the book deals with Quranic ayats and hadeeth about UFO's and finally he ends with stuff you can find on The Arrivals. Although I knew most of this information (anecdotal and religious) the way he weaves it together really brings home his hypothesis. If you are not familiar with either or one of these subjects though prepare to be shocked. Even with my knowledge though I was very creeped out. My advice ; don't read this alone by yourself at night. This book proves even more that Islam is a religion with all the answers; you just need to look for them.