me Life and Times of the Fireflies: December 2014

Thursday, 25 December 2014

Turning 40!

I love stories of beginnings... and even though I was not part of your beginnings, I like the story anyway. For that was the beginning of your journey, a journey that would one day lead to me, lead to now... I think stories of beginnings are very significant of who we are and that's what makes me very sentimental about yours!

I don't think it's coincidence that your first breathes and the early morning rays arrived simultaneously. Your presence to me is exactly like the warmth of the rays embracing the dark sky, your personality exactly like the sunrise! Your smile and laughter and witty sense of humour, your wisdom and positive outlook on life, your overall positive energy and demeanour makes me feel like I'm basking in a constant dawn!
As a young girl, I always had a vision of what my Prince Charming would look and be like. My naivety had an unrealistic destiny mapped out with someone who only ever came to life in my imagination. Needless to say, I was unprepared for love when I met you and I was even less prepared for real life. But falling in love with you came easy, almost automatic. As if my soul knew that in you I had met my destiny. I had no idea what our forever would look like, all I knew was that I wanted to spend my forever with you.

And now, here you are already at 40! They say "Life begins at 40" but we've been celebrating life together since we met! Every moment with you has been an adventure. From young love, to becoming parents, to our own personal successes. 40 is just another milestone we are seeing in together and I couldn't be more proud to be standing by your side. I couldn't be more proud to be the mother of your kids...or more proud of the magical bond you have with our children. In a future that is so uncertain, I choose to celebrate not just this moment...but every single moment with you!
Fate and Destiny have taken us down a winding road together and I have loved you each step of the way. I have loved you since I was 17. Blindly. Madly. Unconditionally.  I have loved you through my tumultuous twenties while discovering the wonders of Motherhood and the mysteries of real life. I have loved you through heartache and disappointment... and even on my darkest days, when my world felt like it was crumbling around me! And I love you still now, in my thirties. A calm, quiet kind of love. A dependable love. An independent kind of love that thrives on our individuality. And I will love you till my 40's, 50's....forever.

Happy 40th  Birthday my Beloved!
Forever & Always,

Thursday, 18 December 2014

Time Well Spent

I'm not sure if I was pleasantly surprised, but surprised I was when I read the finer print of the kids' reports. I wasn't quite prepared for the longer than usual Summer vacation and although it's a welcomed change from our normal rat race and routine, I am struggling to find a balance between having the kids home full time and squeezing in some time for myself.
Sometimes, when we resist our present moments, we set ourselves up for more internal conflict and despair. It's true that my gym and writing schedules are slightly off sync, that alone time and quiet time is virtually non existent, that I've thought about secretly changing my name so that I don't have to respond to 'Mom' ....but in my longing for bits of my normal routine, I am losing out on my present moment, my moments with my kids.
I'm losing out on jumping into the pool and swimming all afternoon, I'm losing out on walks on the beach and trips to the park, I'm losing out on doing art and collective cooking and the random conversations (which is quite hilarious with the tweens!). I'm losing out on discovering who they are and how the year has changed them. How much will time still change them, I wonder, while I'm trying to steal moments for myself instead of actually BEING in the moment.
So, for the next month or so, I will be living in the moment. Which might mean less time for myself, but will mean a lot more time spent where it is needed. Where it is wanted. Which might, in turn, relieve me from the struggle of wanting to do it all...

Happy Holidays Everyone!

Friday, 12 December 2014

Fashion Friday

When it comes to Summer, one simply can't go wrong with the faithful maxi...dress or skirt. Maxi dresses are definitely my "Go to" items in my closet, mainly because of it's simplicity, elegance and versatility. It's that one item that is easy to style, never outdates and camouflages a multitude of flaws!

With countless ways to style this trend and endless styles and prints to choose from, this simple little wardrobe staple has the ability to transport us through the hot Summer days in style. From beach and lunch dates in pretty flats, to dinner dates and cocktail parties in a pair of killer heels, the maxi dress is definitely here to stay...and I certainly am not complaining :-)

What's great about our little blogging community is that there is always a set of hands ready to help propel us along this creative journey. Amina from A Girl With A Camera was kind enough to offer her photography skills for an afternoon of food photography fun and I'm excited to share more of those images here soon.

But the food shoot took a brief turn off course when Moon arrived (as always) camera ready and naturally took advantage of the opportunity to add a few new pictures to the archives! When 'Girl with a Camera' and 'Girl who is photo ready' collide, the results are worth a little fashion friendly blog post ;-) Sadly, I wasn't as photo ready...only my food was! hahaha Here, Moon shows us how a fun print and interesting style makes the maxi dress the perfect choice for a Garden Tea Party with friends!

Dress by Nazir
Thanks for reading!

Tuesday, 9 December 2014

Summer Mocktails

Summer is here and after a month (if not more) of non-stop slogging, I feel in desperate need of a holiday! Tranquil, turquoise waters would be an ideal escape right now.... Preferably a Tropical Island, where all I can do is lounge around on a secluded beach sipping fancy cocktails while working on a tan. Now more than ever, I feel the need to slow down and release (ever so slightly) the hold on my responsibilities, kick of my shoes and just RELAX!
But, with  just a day barely a few hours between me and the school holidays, it will be a long six weeks before I see even a glimpse of a quiet moment for myself (SIGH)! Stuck in the middle of year end festivities and school Summer Vacation, it's an all round defeat for me! Home certainly is the lesser of the two evils and I will be living out this summer with the mantra "If you can't go to the Island....then bring the Island to you!"
So, in just a few hours, I will be driving out of the school parking lot; holiday destination, home. Living my tropical island dreams in my own backyard, lounging by the poolside with a colourful drink in my hand while the kids have a swim...the only time I dare brave the silly season outdoors will be to restock the ingredients of my favourite Mocktails...Now, if only the universe hears my plea and plays it out exactly the way I picture it in my head ;-)
Berry Spritzer:  This drink was introduced to me by my oldest sister and is the perfect Summer cooler! Super easy to make, a pretty accompaniment to a Summer barbecue  and extremely refreshing...
  • Cherries and Berries Juice
  • Sprite Zero
  • Frozen or fresh berries (I used frozen)
  • Mint leaves
Add about a cup of berry juice, add mint and allow to infuse for a bit. Top up with sprite zero. Add the frozen berries and ice blocks if desired and your perfect poolside mocktail is ready to drink!
Pina Colada : This is a little (ok... a lot) calorie heavy, but oh so delicious! A real treat on those days where the days are heavy and the taste and smell of tropical island is in desperate need!
  • 4 tblsp chopped pineapple (fresh or canned)
  • 1 cup pineapple juice
  • 2 cups coconut cream or milk
  • 4 scoops vanilla ice-cream
  • crushed ice
Blend all the ingredients together thoroughly. Pour into glassware of choice and serve! Best enjoyed chilled. This quantity is enough for a few people.
Food Styling and Photography : Amina Ebrahim
Glassware from : Mambo's Plastics Warehouse

 Have a fantastic festive season and stay safe!
Thanks for reading.


Friday, 5 December 2014

Endings and Beginnings...

She stood there silently. A lone, solitary figure standing still, facing the torment of a violent storm. Where the howling wind hurls towards her, lashing her frail frame, whipping up against her weakening silhouette; where the pelting rain is her only embrace. Feet shackled to the ground, bound by sentiment and memories, unable to move. Her only escape are the steps she is too afraid to take...
Dwarfed by the shadow of falsities that looms around her. Held behind a prison wall cast of lies and deceit. A prisoner of her own fears, she hangs on to the blanket of the night; however dark and gloomy it may be; because that is what is familiar, that is what she knows. She cannot see the horizon and therefore she fears it, preferring to languish in perpetual darkness rather than embrace the inevitable change.... Until one day, desperation propels her forward and she takes a slow and steady step towards a destiny unknown.

Legs heavy, weighed down by the burdens of her past, of the life she so desperately wants to leave behind. With each step, she conquers the fears that have held her back for so long. With each step, she moves further away from the storm that has enveloped her existence and the further away she moves, the more swift her steps become until eventually, the distance between past and the pending horizon, is an equal measure and she stands at the cusp of the very change she had always longed for...the hilly horizon in clear view, ready for the climb!

The end and the beginning starting with the same single step, the delicate colours of sunrise and sunset interwoven, the fragrance of midnight still lingering in the air...embracing change like a suit of armour, she rises like a phoenix against the storm!

Thanks for reading!