What we did for Christmas!

I know many of my Muslim followers will have a go at me saying Muslims don’t celebrate Christmas as it’s not allowed. Firstly before I get into my blog let me explain, when we celebrate Eid or when it’s Ramadan there are many non Muslim whom wish us the very best. So I believe as a Muslim we should love our neighbours and return the love. I have non Muslim neighbours whom give us presents and cards and it’s a nice way to return the love. So we don’t celebrate Christmas but we spend the day as a family with lots of love and food.

So as we do we woke up in the morning and the kids got the presents. They were very excited to open it as they weren’t expecting presents. Mainly because I had a very good hiding place this year and managed to do the wrapping early. And I knew that the kids will be looking for clues but they couldn’t!!

And then of course we watched our Christmassy films and ate the most delicious food made by my mum. Christmas to us means love and family as my husband only has Christmas Day off so it’s nice to spend the day as a family!

What did you all do for Christmas?

xoxo

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Hand foot and mouth!

Every parents nightmare is when your little ones turn ill. During the Christmas holidays Adiy has caught hand foot and mouth from school. It’s like chicken pox but mainly on the foot hands and mouth. On the first day of holidays Adiy woke up with a temperature and little spots on the back of his foot. It was a Sunday so I rang 111 and they advised me to go to the local chemist and the gp the next day. When we went chemist they said it’s not chicken pox but hands foot and mouth. They gave us priton and camolie lotion to put on the affect areas. The next day Manha had caught it from Adiy as well. They recovered from it about a week and they were fine after that.

So if your child ends up with hands foot and mouth be warned it is contagious so it can spread amongst the little ones. Also when they get it it is advised not to give ibrophen but just paracetamol for the temperature and the pain. The lotion is the best way to keep them cool and not itch. And lastly keep them hydrated and give them ice lolly’s as it helps the ones in and around the mouth!

I was lucky that both of my little ones got it together as I have heard that normally if one gets it, the other one gets it weeks after. And I was lucky enough that they fully recovered just in time for school as school does advise parents to keep them in for a week or so!

Thanks for reading! xoxo

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Hello 2019

I’m really late in saying this but happy new year to you all. Now as every year we have a goal and ambition to lead us through the year. I have made realistic goals in order to be more positive and be more happy. Of course these can not be done just by saying it we have to work hard to gain a lot of happiness and success. For me the first and foremost is that I want to put myself first. To take care of my self. That means have a little breather, reading a book, eating and drinking well.

Another is an important one for me and that is to continue going to the gym. I want to find time and do what I’ve always wanted go to the gym and stick to it. I think I will be able to do this as my kids are both in school!

And last but not least to be a good mum, wife and daughter. I know I may have my ups and downs but I really want to be the best at being these. I know I am as I am loved by all!

Happy new year everyone!

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11 tips for bedtime routine (kids)

1. Get organized for bedtime right after dinner

If you have a partner or family member to help out, you can tag team to get everything ready. One person can clean up the supper dishes while the other gets everything ready for bed.

Having everything organized will help things feel less chaotic and prevent running around all over the house looking for that missing teddy or the last pair of clean underwear.

2. Let them finish what they’re doing

For us grownups, it’s so hard when we’re in the middle of something to stop and leave it unfinished to go do something else.

It works the same way for kids and their bedtime routine! If they’re in the middle of playing a game or building with blocks, be sure to give them enough advanced notice so they can wrap it up before getting ready for bed.

Example:

Instead of, “Okay, it’s time for bed! Come downstairs right now!” Try saying, “It’s time to wrap up for the day. In 20 minutes we’ll start our nighttime routine. What do you need to finish before you take your bath?”

Giving them enough time to wrap things up will help avoid a power struggle. It also helps them feel prepared for what comes next. Oftentimes my kids are so busy having fun that they don’t even realize it’s getting close to bedtime!

3. Validate their feelings

When rushing through bedtime routines it can be tempting to say, “I don’t care if you want to brush your teeth or not, you’re doing it anyway! You don’t want them to fall out, do you?!”

But one key to avoiding power struggles and helping your child feel heard is to validate their feelings and show them you understand.

Example:

“You feel frustrated when it’s time to put away your toys.”  “I know brushing your teeth isn’t your favorite thing to do.”

Related reading: How to Say “No” To Your Strong-Willed Child (Without using the word “no”!)

4. Do the hard stuff first

Where do you usually get the most pushback? Teeth brushing? If so, try putting that first on your bedtime to-do list.

You can say, “As soon as you brush your teeth, we’ll (take a bath/read a story). This will get the dreaded thing done and over with first so the rest of the night can be smooth sailing.

5. Offer a choice

If your child is resistant to doing the hard stuff first, you can offer a choice.

Example:

“Would you like to brush your teeth first or take a bath?”

This helps them feel more in control and less likely to initiate a power struggle.

6. Consider a routine vs. a schedule

What’s the difference between a routine and a schedule? A routine is something that you do consistently, without a specific time set in stone. For example, our family usually starts getting the kids ready for bed after homework is wrapped up. It never happens at the exact same time every day.

On the other hand, a schedule is something that you do at a specific time every day. For example, you might specify that at 6:30 pm every day, you will start your bedtime routine.

Personally, I find that a schedule can be too challenging for us to stick to. We have things that come up. Sometimes we go out or run errands in the evenings.

Some people really thrive on having a schedule, but if you don’t, that’s okay!! A routine might be a better option for you to allow for more flexibility. You may try experimenting with both to see what works better for your kiddos.

7. Provide visual cues

I’m not an artist whatsoever, but I drew this simple chart for my kids to follow. We put it in our kitchen and our kids can visually see what needs to be done before bed.

Of course, as I mentioned before, I do offer choices, so as long as everything gets checked off the list, I don’t mind if this happens out of order.

Many kids are visual learners, so having it right in front of them where they can see it really helps! You can make a simple chart like this one with cardstock and sticky notes. Kids can move their sticky note to “check off” each item on their bedtime to do list.

8. Make it fun

Usually, my babies love choosing their favourite pjs and their favourite book. So you can try and make them chose their favourite book remember make it fun!

9.  Set the timer

Sometimes getting a child in the bath is a challenge. Other times, getting a child OUT of the bath is a challenge. When I know we don’t have time for leisurely baths, I’ll use the timer on my phone and set a clear expectation.

Example:

“Okay, the timer is set for 15 minutes. When you hear the timer ring, you’ll know it’s time to get out and dry off.”

You can also get a visual timer like this one, which is great for kids!

10.  Give them something to look forward to

Whether it’s a devotional, a favorite book, or a special song, save the best for last.

You can gently remind them, “As soon as you’re in bed we can sing our special song!”  Or, “I’m looking forward to reading our mystery book tonight! I can’t wait to see what happens next!”

11.  Remember why it’s important to end the day on a positive note

Trust me, I know you’re exhausted at the end of the day. You’ve been pulled in every direction. You’re frazzled. But hang in there, mama!

Gently remind yourself how you want your child to feel at the end of the day. When they reflect on the last few hours, how do they remember the family dynamic? Stressful? Agitated? One of my goals each night is to make sure that when I tuck my kiddos into bed they can feel secure, safe, loved, and wanted.

Keeping this goal in mind helps me to dig deep to power through the end-of-day stress.

Let me know if any of these have worked for you! xoxo.

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40 things to do with your baby

1. Tummy time

Even doing this for just 10 minutes here and there makes a big difference to your baby’s development. Plus you can make it really fun by holding out toys for them, dangling ribbons in don’t of them, anything that will catch their interest and encourage them to reach out.

2. Scent exploration

Get some fresh herbs such as rosemary, basil and parsley and hold them under your baby’s nose while explaining to them what each one is. This is a brilliant sensory activity.

3. Have a splash

Get a shallow tray or bowl and fill It with water. Get your baby’s legs out of their baby grow or trousers then kick their legs in the water. They will be fascinated by the noises and movement of the water.

4. Dance

Put on your favourite tunes and have a good boogie. Carry your baby around with you or let them watch you. Baby’s absolutely love the rhythm of music and this is a fabulous bonding activity, plus a good chance for a cuddle.

5. Tour of the house

Carry your baby from room to room and tell them what each room is for. The more you talk to them on a regular basis, the more you’re contributing to their language development.

6. Create a sensory box

Get a small box and fill it with all kinds of household and outdoor objects. Things like wooden spoons, sponges, scarves, a pine cone, feather, artificial flowers and stones are perfect. Think about different textures and weights.

7. Different sounds

Talk to your baby about the different sounds that things make and imitate them. You could talk them through the different sounds farm animals make, or the noises you hear coming from outside.

8. Nursery rhymes

The sound of nursery rhymes is very appealing for small babies because they’re just fascinated by rhythm and music. Get a small book of nursery rhymes if you’re not sure of all the words. My toddler still loves reading her nursery rhymes book now.

9. Sing your favourite songs

Sit on the sofa or floor and have a little sing along together. Pick your all-time favourite songs to make it fun for you as well.

10. Have a chat

Nope they won’t talk back but babies are good listeners. Tell them about your pregnancy, your job, your family, your friends. Tell them whatever you want, without fear of judgement.

They will love the sound of your voice and you can get a few things off your chest.

11. Rustling paper

Get some tissue paper and put it in your baby’s hands or near their feet so they can shake and kick it to make it rustle. The noise will fascinate them and it teaches them about cause and effect.

12. Balloon kicking

Get a balloon or two filled with helium and tie them to your baby’s feet. They will love being able to make the balloons move. This is another good cause and effect lesson.

13. Mirror mirror

You could combine this one with tummy time by putting a mirror on the floor by your baby’s head in their line of vision or hold it up in front of them. Babies are fascinated by their reflection.

14. Shake a rattle

Rattles are so perfect for babies as they appeal to several of their senses – touch, sound, sight and taste when they stuff it in their mouth.

15. Baby massage

If you research groups in your area you may be able to find a local course for this. But you don’t have to take an entire course to be able to do this for your baby. Grab some baby oil and massage their tummy gently before spreading to their arms and legs, giving their hands and feet a good run too. It’s a fab thing to do before bedtime or nap time to get them relaxed.

16. Making faces

Lie down on the sofa with your legs bent and pop your baby onto your tummy with their head resting on your knees. Then pull faces and see if you can find one that makes your baby laugh.

17. Grabbing baskets

Get three or four small boxes or baskets and fill them with similar things. One might have large beads, another chunks of paper or cardboard, and another may have bits of pasta. Let your baby explore each one either on their tummy or by showing them everything in the baskets. Of course do supervise your child to make sure they don’t eat any of the items in the baskets.

18. Rattle socks

These are great fun and are sold quite widely in the shops. Some have little bells in too. Pop them on and let your baby have a kick about with them.

19. String of beads

Get a string of play beads or decorative ones and hand them to your baby. Run the beads through their hands and dangle them in front of their line of vision.

20. Finger puppets

You can either make some or buy them. Create a fun puppet show or simply invent different voices for each of the characters and have them chat to your baby. This is great visual stimulation for your little one.

21. Fly away

Lie down on the floor and lift your baby up above your head. Try adding a verbal cue like “three, two, one blast off!” as well. This is one to do with a baby who can hold their head up, so not suitable for a newborn.

22. Curl up and cuddle up

Skin to skin contact is a brilliant way of bonding with your baby. It feels great for both your baby and you. But if it’s chilly it doesn’t have to be skin to skin. Find a comfy spot and just enjoy having a cuddle, they won’t be this small forever. You could even pop your favourite box set on the telly.

23. Hiding toys

Get some of your baby’s favourite toys and hide them under a cloth or blanket. Make a big drama out of asking where they have gone. Then lift the cloth to reveal them saying “ta da”. This is a great learning experience for babies, as it can teach them that things still exist when they can’t see them.

24. Blowing raspberries

At around six months your baby should be able to return raspberries and they will love exchanging them with you. But before then they will find the noise interesting, and funny.

25. Family photo albums

Get out your favourite family photo albums and talk to your baby about who everyone is and where the photos were taken.

26. Bath

Make the bath lots of fun with toys, songs and bubbles.

27. Round and Round the Garden

Get your baby’s foot of hand and draw circles with your finger while singing “round and round the garden, like a teddy bear”. Then walk your fingers up their arm or tummy before tickling under their armpit while singing “one step, two step, tickley under there”.

28. Have a garden picnic

If the weather is warm enough put a blanket out and lay your baby on it. Enjoy your lunch outside while chatting to your baby about all the different plants and trees in the garden.

29. Rolling

Help your baby to roll from their back to their tummy and then return to their back again.

30. Get creative with their toys

Use your baby’s stuffed animals to tell a little story. You can put on different voices and create characters with each of them. The visual stimulation will be fab for your baby.

31. Blow bubbles

All children are fascinated by bubbles. You can get bubble machines that do all of the hard work for you or go for the traditional pots.

32. Activity mat

The baby gym or activity mat is a must-have piece of baby gear in my opinion. The ones with arches that dangle toys are fantastic as they can keep your baby hypnotised for ages. Lots of them have different textures of fabric too which is perfect for stimulating your baby’s sense of touch.

33. Holding

Hand your baby toys, rattles or other objects they can easily grasp. They can grip and hang on to things from a very early age.

34. Copy cat

Hold your baby up facing you or hold them facing outwards in front of a mirror so they can see their face and your face. Copy every facial expression and sound they make.

35. Texture play

Get some corrugated cardboard, tissue paper, rough drawing paper and anything else you can think of. Let your baby explore the different textures with their hands and feet.

36. Get moving

Pedal their legs and flap their arms gently. Move their limbs for them to help them stretch them out and see what they can do with them.

37. Read a book

There’s so many amazing books for babies. The choice is endless and reading from an early age is a fantastic thing to do for your baby. When they’re a few months old they will be able to help turn the pages too.

38. Make up a story

Invent a story involving your family or a different cast of characters and tell it to your baby. They just love hearing the sound of your voice.

39. Name the body parts

Lie your baby down on their play mat or changing mat and name their body parts while also pointing them out on yourself. So nose, mouth, ears, hair. You could even sing head, shoulders, knees and toes to them.

40. Drawing

No, your baby can’t draw yet of course! But they will love to watch you making marks on a piece of paper. You can always put a pencil or pen in their hand and help them draw lines on a piece of paper.

Xoxo

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Why I blog?

I have been blogging for years but my blog didn’t really have a niche. Then I had my first born Adiy and the whole game changed. Adiy was premature and I wanted to share my experience, so I did. And then Manha was born and I continued with the mummy theme. As a mother I am learning something new every single day so I thought why not share my experiences to other mums.

Don’t get me wrong I found it hard at first you know writing, proof reading and editing. And some days my mind was blank. I didn’t have the faintest clue what to write. But Allahumduliah (praise Allah) I got used to writing in a short space of time and as soon as I have an idea I write it down so when I get stuck I know I have a plan.

What I can advice is that blogging should not be forced. Just go with the flow. Don’t be upset that one month your posting and the other your not. As I know there will be ups and downs but you will soon pick up the pace. Also what you need is the right niche, so experiment write what you want to write about not what everyone else is writing about. Your blog will become perfect it may take time but it will!

Xoxo

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Dear Husband

One day we will miss all of this,

Waking up early in the morning with little voices saying good morning,

One day we will miss all of this,

The hectic ness of the morning breakfast,

One day we will miss all of this,

Taking random trips to the park and watching our little ones explore,

One day we will miss all of this,

The long goodbyes at the school gates, and the lovely hugs after school.

One day we will miss all of this,

The early mornings on Saturday and Sunday and jumping on the bed.

One day we will miss all of this,

Being a referee when they argue, the discipline, the tantrums.

One day we will miss all of this while we sit together alone at home, and missing their laughter ❤️

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