Sunday, 11 October 2015

Seventh birthday of my princess!

Recently we celebrated seventh birthday of our daughter. Arranging birthday is difficult when you have to accommodate both relatives and your child's friends in a party and that too if it is summer time as you cannot arrange it outdoors.

So we came to conclusion that we will have two birthdays: one at home for some of my daughter's friends and the other at restaraurant for our family. It became less tiring and more enjoyable for our daughter as she got to spend her birthday both with her friends and cousins.

This time I made goody bags myself as my daughter wanted Sofia the first 's goody bags and those goody bags available in the market were not of good quality. We bought sofia the first diaries, glitter pens, balloons , biscuits and candies for the filling of goody bags. Everyone appreciated them and I also loved making the goody bags with my daughter.

Thursday, 10 September 2015

Back to school ... New grade, New stuff and School lunch!

Schools have opened after a long summer break and my little one has just stepped into grade 2.  This year the settling into new class and with new teacher seemed much easier as compared to last year. The transition from preschool to grade 1 is a big moment for a child as the whole set up of toy classrooms changes and kids have to behave responsibly as they are no more preschool kids now.At each and every step they are told that you are now in grade one so be responsible . Once grade one is over, kids settle down and then it becomes easier for them to settle in new classes as they already know the rules.

The school routine has started with all the new stuff and of course that too all related to Frozen . One problem which every mother faces everyday is giving unique lunch which has to be  healthy and yummy too. My daughter asks from me every night as what I am going to give her for school lunch tomorrow. Though recipes on websites make it easy for today's mothers to look at the options yet preparing something different everyday that also attracts your kids apart from being healthy is a herculean task .

I would be posting some school lunch  recipes as I try them! Best of luck to every kid for a happy and successful school year ahead :)

Saturday, 22 August 2015

August...a month of independence celebrations


As 14th august draws near , excitement of every Pakistani increases especially the kids. Markets are inundated with national flags, green badges , hair bands, headbands, green shirts and what not. If you have a kid at home, then there is no chance that he is going to spare you without buying these items.

My daughter ( by the grace of Allah Almighty) just turned seven and the first thing she wanted to do this august was buying clothes and badges for herself; and flag and other adornments for our home.Another thing that really inspires her is watching independence parade on tv. As your kids grow up, they make you realize that you should celebrate events with fervour while spreading happiness all around. Loving your country not only makes you patriotic but it does make you a better human; you start caring about little things which infact do matter a lot. Taking pride in yourself and your country is a thing which every child should be taught.

The festivity which 14 th August brings is also one of its kind. My daughter was getting sad as the day was ending because she wanted to celebrate 14th august to the fullest. She completed her celebrations by forcing us to show her illumination in the market and then going with her grandparents for a family dinner.The illumination at the buildings is one thing that is also a feature of Independence Day. Then you find Pakistani flag on almost every home all around your neighbourhood.Then there is famous Independence Day parade on Wagah border(border between India and Pakistani) where thousands of people gather to watch highly exuberant ceremony.The highly emotionally charged ceremony is also shown live on  television .

August marks Independence Day and also opening of schools after a long summer break.That makes it even more exciting for kids as new year of school means new school supplies for kids!So far August has been a busy busy month.

Wednesday, 15 July 2015

Father

This is something I intended to post on Father's Day but was busy lately so saved the draft.

Where mother is a symbol of love, father is a source of inspiration and solution of all problems for kids. Especially in homes where role of a mother is determined as a housewife, a father stand as a successful person who has excelled in his career. For kids, father is a strong individual who earns for them and fights for their rights in the society.

For daughters, a father is a perfect person who makes them stand tall in the world. A father is a shade that protects you from the scorching heat of the world. A father is a person who makes sure that you get all the comfort in the world. This is all what I have seen in my father and I am sure this is all what my daughter sees in her father and my husband. Every daughter is a princess to her father and that is what makes this relation so special!

Saturday, 9 May 2015

Happy Mother's Day!.... Love, Sacrifice and Technology

Hello!
Today is Mother's Day : the much awaited day for mothers and also for kids. For mothers, obviously because if their kids utter one word of thank you , it elates the moms as mothers are devoid of selfishness and materialism ; they only know how to love their kids and I know this because my mother has been such a lady. From waking up in the wee hours of the morning to taking care of all of us ; she has been always there for all of us. No matter how circumstances were and are, she always supports us and not to say, gives the best piece of advice whenever you need to know one. I remember once I was in deep pain and only holding the hand of my mom lessened my pain: such is the connection between a mother and a child. My mother is one person in the world who won't judge us for our gifts; whether you gift her a small thing , she would cherish it as a token of our love.I love you mom!

Since I am also a mother of a little girl, I also received gifts and cards from her. She enthusiastically went with her aunt to the market to buy me some gifts. I do feel I am really lucky to have a doting mother as well as adorable and loving daughter in my life. My daughter makes sure to make me feel happy everyday. When I am angry at her, she quietly goes to the kitchen and picks up a tray and then bring a glass of water for me; all my anger vanishes at such cute acts.This Mother's Day, along with the gifts, she has made cute cards with heart melting words! I know she is the best daughter better than I was as I was not an expressive child . But the thing I don't know is that whether I am and would be as great mother my mom is  because matching the sacrifice level of mothers changes with every generation.

Sacrifice is a must for motherhood; infact it is a symbol of motherhood. I have seen my mom sacrificing her professional career for us . We, the present day moms, belong to such an era where technology has overpowered everything. We have our smartphones for browsing, whats app and facebook; we have put our kids in a perplex situation by getting too involved in technology. My daughter one day said to me , " Please mom, put your phone away" . It was indeed a reality check for me. Little kids get annoyed as what they want is a firsthand attention from their moms!. I really try to give her time but I know I won't be best as your grandmother as she is the best ever mom!Love you mom always:)

Saturday, 11 April 2015

Cinderella... Review ... Part 2

Now coming to the main film, Cinderella; for kids it's absolutely charming. As an adult, I didn't find that amazing;may be it was because we knew the end. But one thing was certain;we were there at the cinema for our six year old as we hardly take her to cinema with us and it was probably her third visit to cinema and she enjoyed the most!
                                                            Image courtesy:Disney
Cinderella according to a six year old:
I asked my daughter after the movie that which part you loved the most : her answer was Cinderella as Frozen Fever was too short. According to her , the story was good because it was different as  they showed her parents but the best part was only before her parents died. Of course for small kids, digesting the concept of death and that too of one's parents is very difficult.
Moreover, she told me that the fairy godmother was not that pretty! That was also shocking for me but from a six year old, you can expect anything as children at this age are innocent and pretty clear about their thoughts .I guess it was because the fairy god mother before her transformation was shown as an old lady in rags and that image is of course unacceptable to kids mainly because they want the sparkling fairy god mother to be gorgeous while doing Abra ca Dabra. She said that fairy godmother in the story book was more beautiful.
One thing my daughter absolutely loved about the movie was its song i.e Lavender's blue , dilly dilly.
I also loved listening to the melodious song.


                                                        Image courtesy: Disney
My thoughts:
I enjoyed the movie but not as much as I had thought I would. Cinderella's connection with her parents was a beautiful aspect of the movie. Her mother's advice, her  father's love and her strong
bonding with both of them is impeccably captured.
One thing which I must say is that costumes in the movie are ravishing. Cinderella's looks resplendent in her bewitching blue ball gown. The costumes of the step mother and step sisters are equally dazzling.Step mother looks elegant yet cruel and that is due to the brilliant acting of Cate Blanchett. I really loved her acting and so did my six year old.

Though my husband accompanied us to the movie but he was indifferent as Cinderella is all about girls but thankfully, he chose to come with us and watch the entire movie with us instead of going for Furious 6.

Wednesday, 8 April 2015

Review: Cinderella and Frozen Fever... Part one

Last week we went to watch Cinderella and it was on mere insistance of my daughter according to whom all her friends had watched Cinderella and Frozen fever except her.So my daughter all set on her recliner to watch the movie kept on asking me when will the movie start as we went 10 minutes before the movie time.
                                                        Image courtesy: Disney

Finally the movie started with the birthday celebrations of Anna. Frozen's Fever's main topic is Anna's Birthday and Disney has utilised the idea perfectly as  all kids are crazy about birthdays.Then the new dresses of Elsa and Anna are sure to make your little girls demand those dresses as my daughter has already made her request to buy her the new Elsa dress. Since the time Frozen was released, almost every little girl wanted Elsa's dress and accessories for her birthday.Frozen's cakes also became very popular.This of course would be another bonus for Disney as little girls would be buying more of Anna and Elsa's new dresses plus dolls with new dresses.
                                                         Image courtesy: Disney

The animation no doubt is beautiful!The snowballs that were formed after every sneeze of Elsa looked so cute. The song,"Making today a perfect today" is also sweet to listen. In short, it is short in length, probably not as long as kids wanted but it's enough for the film makers to draw profits as many girls only went to watch Cinderella due to Frozen Fever.Albeit Cinderella has it's own charm but for little girls aged 3-10, everything has to have a "Frozen"aspect in it. Although I felt while watching  it that what was the use of making such a short film but for little girls, even a shorter version is more than welcome.

Thursday, 2 April 2015

Do the buildings, age and area of institutions matter?

I never seriously pondered on this question unless I did my graduation and applied for post graduation program. I applied in almost 4 universities for MBA and also for Masters in English Literature as I had English Literature as one of the majors during my graduation. By the grace of Allah Almighty, I got admission in all 4 universities i.e Bahria university Islamabad,  Nust Rawalpindi, Punjab University Lahore and Government College University Lahore.

My parents and I sat together to discuss the best option and then after much pondering, I decided it had to be Government College University Lahore.Candidly, on my part, the main reason was its beautiful large campus , its reputation and lush green grounds. You really feel like you are in a university when you step inside its gate. Moreover, it has such a rich history.GCU was built in 1864 and it has produced some of the prominent names of our country like the great Allama Iqbal and nobel prize winner Dr Abdul Salam.


GCU tower and its building mesmerised me and I realized that I have to study there no matter what. The grandeur and the rich culture of the university infatuated me. Such is the impact of old and beautiful institutions that it is difficult for any modern new institution to surpass them.

Now when I had to select a suitable school for my six year old daughter ( having completed her preschool) , I knew I had to select a reliable well established school with a big building because kids apart from academics need playgrounds and swimming pools for excursion. I do believe that big schools give students a psychological edge too as they learn to thrive in greater competition as big schools usually have a large number of students plus large faculty in addition to a variety of extra curricular activities.

Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Everything becomes frozen!

For my six year old daughter, every toy and stationary item seems to have a frozen edition and it is evident  when you look at her room. From her erasers to her lunch box  and from her hair accessories to her party dresses, everything is under the influence of Frozen's Elsa and Anna.So much so that even her floor mat has Anna and Elsa on it.

Even the board games and puzzles should also have a frozen edition and I guess, this is story of every other home having a 3-10 year old daughter who is mesmerised by the Frozen characters.Even the walls and cupboards of my daughter's room are adorned with Frozen's stickers. Such is the impact of this movie that kids want everything of theirs to have some correlation with the movie. Recently we went to watch the movie ,"Cinderella" only because it had a small portion known as "Frozen Fever"!.

Now the next item on my daughter's wish list is a Frozen school bag and I have promised her that for new school year . That's why I have started looking for a good quality Frozen school bag from now onwards as my six year old wants a good quality spacious Frozen school bag!

Monday, 30 March 2015

In love with the cultural side of Lahore

This weekend, we went to dinner at Andaaz restaurant situated in old Lahore near Badshahi Mosque. (which is seventh largest mosque of the world).This is the second time we went there and we enjoyed as much as the first time we went there. The food is super delicious plus the view of the majestic Badshahi mosque is breathtaking.

What makes the whole place unique is its cultural touch. Lahore fort(also known as Shahi qila) which is also a famous historical place of Lahore is also located in the same area. Then there is the food street inundated with restaurants known for delectable traditional food.

Moreover, you get handicrafts here at relatively cheap prices.

Plus the music of flute played there adds to the flavour of food served.This whole area is a major tourist attraction of Lahore.




In an era, where Lahore is known for its beautiful roads and for its shopping centers, the old Lahore urges you to admire the cultural beauty of the city. The Badshahi mosque(built by sixth Mughal emperor Aurangzeb in 1671), Lahore fort , GPO (built in 1887 to commemorate Queen Victoria's Golden Jubilee)plus the beautiful Government College( which is also my college) adds beauty to the whole area. And if you on your way cross the canal which is beautifully decorated during spring, it is surely going to complete your trip.It is not only an entertainment trip for you and your kids but an educational trip too.

Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Success and Failure!

Photo courtesy: freedigitalphotos.net

World Cup fever came and is gone in just two games!We, Pakistanis, follow one sport keenly and that is cricket . No other game is as popular as cricket in our subcontinent region. World Cup 2015 glued everybody to their television screens here but the hope and the passion is all gone in the opening two games.

The first match against India even attracted the children. My six year old was as enthusiastic as any grown up to wake up at 7 am on Sunday to watch the match. But everyone's hopes were dashed to ground. But then it's just a game and failures teach you something that success can't . Infact failures pave the way towards your success but you have to stay steady in achieving your goal.

I always tell my daughter that sometimes rewards don't matter but effort matters. You always have to keep working hard to achieve your goal. I remember when I was in seventh grade and I was not selected in a debate competition that I so much wanted to participate in. I knew I had worked hard but I was not selected. I took it as a challenge and went straight to a teacher who was selected singers who could sing patriotic songs in the break. I got selected and went to the same debate competition ; obviously not for a debate but for a song. But the point is I thought of going to the contest and made it happen.Sometimes you do have to alter the path to achieve the same goal.

When you look at life, life is so full of stories that you only need to ponder on in order to make your children learn from your experience. So Happy thinking!:)

Friday, 20 February 2015

Lovely weather of Lahore

Nowadays Lahore is having a wonderful weather. February and March are probably the best months here in Lahore. As the winter season's intensity lessens , there comes a pleasant change in the whole atmosphere. Last week there was a hailstorm  here and when it happens, everyone associates it with snow and comes out to see it. Then there were two days of rain followed by a gentle breeze and everyone enjoyed the pleasant weather.Happiness is in these small things.The spring is coming ; infact it has come and everyone prepares for it by bringing flower pots from the plant nurseries. Then there are flower competitions, spring carnivals and summer lawn exhibitions. There is exuberance everywhere.

We also brought some flower pots to our home in order to welcome the advent of spring!:)

Saturday, 14 February 2015

Valentines day


Happy valentines day!
My husband and I don't believe much in celebrating valentines day while pouring out all your money from your pocket but wishing each other and celebrating a little don't do much harm. Life is incomplete without little happy moments.
My daughter has turned six year and so has started writing sentences . The sweetest gift we got from her today was a card with a note saying I love you mom and dad; you are my whole world. This is the cutest gift you can get as a parent.

On every valentines day since our daughter turned 3, we take her out with us on valentines day as this day is not only for couples but also for families as love has to be there in any family. This all comes from me while sitting in hospital's waiting area for my daughter's regular check up.
Wishing everyone a lovely day filled with all the happiness ,love and care.

Sunday, 8 February 2015

So the sales are on!

Pretty Girl Shopping Stock Image

As the winter season bades good bye and spring begins to spread its colours, the clothing and shoe brands also welcome the spring season with winter sales. The moment you come on any thoroughfare,the first thing you see is huge billboards announcing the season sales. The good thing about sales is that you get branded clothes at discounted prices but the bad thing is that, there are chances your friends have have worn the same designs before the sales began. But still, I like sales. You can always buy items like jeans, shoes and socks.

 Brands for Kids:
The sale I like the best is Next sale. Since I have become a mom, I have started spending more on my daughter and that this is what happens in sales too. I like the Next sale because it starts from 40 percent off and then goes till 70 percent. I love buying shirts and sweaters for my daughter from Next as their clothes are not only comfortable but also long lasting and trendy.

This year also as soon as I got their sms regarding sales, I rushed to the store. There were long queues inside the store and the kids' section was more crowded as everybody wanted to get kids' clothes and shoes at discounted prices.

Amongst the local brands for kids, I prefer buying jeans from Bareeze's Leisure Club for my
daughter. I also like kids' trousers and jeans at Outfitters ; they are comfortable and affordable too.Talking about kids' traditional dresses for wedding, Minnie Minors is the best. Their quality is good and the material also makes the child comfortable unlike the dresses that cause itchiness.

 Brands for Ladies: 
Amongst the brands for ladies there are so many : both local and international. Infact our local market for clothes and shoes has progressed so well that one really feels bewildered as what to buy and what to not. My favourite brands amongst the unstitched suits are Khaadi and Alkaram. Amongst the stitched ones, I prefer buying from Junaid Jamshed stores. Threads and Motifs is of course another name that ensures quality and comfort for customers: I  like their unstitched embroidered suits.
 Bags and Shoes:
Comings to bags, Charles and Keiths plus Mango are my favourites. For shoes, I think as far as my choice is concerned, nothing matches Charles and Keith.

Albeit sales look very attractive and you feel like buying everything, but one should hold money for the fresh arrivals too as you need not spend everything on the old designs.

Saturday, 31 January 2015

Making cake in 10 minutes!

I have never been a keen learner of art of cooking but the idea of making experimental food or something unique always attracts me. Recently I read a recipe of a microwave chocolate cake. At first, I thought it might not turn right as all my experiments regarding cooking food in microwave had failed. But then, I heard from one of my friends that she makes excellent cake in microwave and that too in only 5 minutes. After hearing this, I tried the recipe that I read while surfing on the net and to my amazement, the cake turned out great. It was soft plus the taste was also too good.
Freshly baked chocolate cake in microwave
Here is the recipe for this quick cake.

Prep time 5 min
Cooking time 5 min

Total time: 10 min

Ingredients:
100 grams or 1/2 cup butter
1 cup flour
1tsp baking powder
2tbsp cocoa powder
Milk 2 tbsp
Vanilla essence 1/2 tsp
Eggs 3
Sugar 1 cup

Method:
1. Sieve flour, cocoa powder plus baking powder and set aside.
2. Now blend sugar and butter. Add  eggs one by one and then add 1/2 tsp vanilla essence.
3. Now add the powder mixture in the no. 2 mixture. First add 1/2 of the mixture and then add remaining mixture. Add milk while blending thoroughly.
4. Take a greased microwave friendly pan and pour the mixture in the pan.
5. Put the mixture in microwave for 5 minutes and enjoy the cake.