Nazima. 21. UK. Postgraduate Student aspiring to be a Teacher.
I wish I had more time to cook. 
That’s the only disadvantage of being busy, not being able to do things you enjoy for yourself. So to kick off my half-term week, I made my first ever loaf of bread: Banana and date loaf.
My everyday hibernation hole
New in the Esty shop
Mustard & Blue
Mint & Blue
Orange & Beige

More variations will be arriving soon…

I received a notification from Etsy for a new order. I then went on to see where the purchase was made and it read Bermuda…what…really?
It’s just incomprehensible that somebody from an Island has bought a scarf from my little shop, it’s such an overwhelmingly mind-boggling feeling!

My recent creativity motivator for when you feel like you’re stuck in a rut
Wow, training to be a teacher is difficult, there I said it.

The sweet and rosy visions of wondrous teacher and student interactions are still there but are slightly overshadowed by the harsh realities and the hardships which children and teachers are subject to encounter. I’m tired of hearing “you’re training to be a primary school teacher, it’s not so bad, all you do is play!” Don’t get me wrong I’m not giving up or thinking of quitting my training. In fact, alhumdulilah I’m so pleased to be exposed to the complexities of this career path so early on. Although this realisation was quite terrifying at first and tough to digest it’s put things into perspective for me. There is still so much more to see and experience and having a slight awareness will hopefully prepare me for what could potentially be lurking round the corner ready to pounce. At least I can say without any hesitation that the rose tinted glasses are well and truly put down.

There is so much wrong with Captain Phillips, it is unbelievable yet believable

This beautiful boy welcomed us in at the mosque.
Suleiman was his name, he had a sand covered face and arms, a constant snotty nose and ripped, two-sizes-too-small t-shirt and a pair of shorts. 

After spending more than an hour searching for the Ibn Yusuf Mosque to pray afternoon salaah, an elderley, frail man with honest eyes interacted with us using facial features and bodily movements, he gave us a bag to put our shoes in, he took us to the female quaters, left us and returned to his prayer. 

We stepped inside and there came Suleiman storming in front of me, his face lit up and a smile beamed on his face, he stood there not asking for money, any sympathy, any pity, just being there blessing us a warm and vibrant smile. 

In my broken English/French/Arabic, I spoke to him: 
Me: Salaama (i wanted to take him in my arms)
Suleiman: “Waalaikum Salaam!”
Me: “What’s your name?”:
Suleiman: “Shhuleiman”
Me: “Suleiman?” 
Suleiman: “Oui, Oui, It’s Shhuleiman!” 

Then he suddenly ran to his mum, shyly pointing me out and hiding behind his mum and sister and sneakily glancing at me. 

We prayed afternoon salaah in a children’s classroom, it had a blackboard with yesterday’s sentences in Arabic half smudged half clear. It reminded me of being at mosque as a child (an unused run-down factory, converted into a children’s mosque) thinking about the basic neccessities, a teacher, a chalk, a blackboard and a few cushions to sit on, that’s all we needed.

We relaxed, rested our bones, read Quran and attempted to clear our minds. I wanted to stay for longer in the tranquil state but we had a few things to see and complete so regrettably got up and made our way towards the exit. 

I was looking out for Suleiman, I wanted to say goodbye to him, to see his infectious smile again before we left. I saw him with his head burrowed into his mother’s chest, he looked content, they all looked content. Suleiman and his family laid there at the entrance of the masjid door, not seeking any attention, at peace, finding solace sitting in the corner of the masjid. His mum saw me approaching him, I tapped him on the shoulder, he didn’t turn, his mum saw me and tugged at his shoulder and called his name. 

Suleiman looked up at his mum then me, I presented my hand and said “Salaam Suleiman” he shook my hand and returned my salaam. For a moment I thought this is the time where I give him some money, but I shunned the thought. I put my hand on his head and playfully ruined his hair, he looked up and gave me a giggle. I found a pack of sweets in my bag that I’d bought from the local shop and a pack of tic tacs, I gave him the sweets and put my shoes on and waved him goodbye. 

I wonder what Suleiman and his family would be doing right now, would they be looking for food, hungry, be safe, be in good health? 
I can only pray
But I can say with confidence, he was happy, wholeheartedly, he wasn’t seeking the life of the strange foreigner, he was at peace in his position. The genuineness and warmth that came from his eyes  was something money could not give, that was his reality and he did not desire it.
The gateway to heaven
The perfect backdrop
Tea with Mum
Mustard Audrey Cowl ready to ship