Thanksgiving Challenge: Grateful for Nature and Trees

Hello and welcome to my blog! It’s been a hectic day today, and although I wrote the following gratitude entry this morning, I’m just getting around to posting it in the evening. I’ve been in a terrible mood today, but spending the day at my parents really helped. Also, thinking about nature was pretty cathartic.

Gratitude challenge: Trees and Nature

I’m so grateful for nature because it teaches me patience and mindfulness.
I’m grateful for the trees and all the oxygen they produce.
I’m grateful for the fruits they bear, for the beauty they show, for the leaves they wear, for the shade they give.
I’m grateful for the seas and oceans and rivers and all the sea life they contain.
I’m grateful for the sunshine and the rain.
I’m grateful for the seasons as they change.
I’m grateful for the mountains standing tall.
I’m grateful for the snow as it falls.
I’m grateful for the peace that washes over me when I walk into nature and I stroll amongst the trees.

Poetry Friday: From screen to screen

I’ve been laying in bed for an hour

Scrolling on my phone

My body is devoid of power

And I’m feeling alone

I do this each night

On my phone all night

Tell myself I’m alright

I’m too scared I can’t think right

During the day

From screen to screen

If I’m alone with my thoughts

I just might scream

All the thoughts in my head are depressing

I keep going on my phone, it’s addicting

Too tired to do soul searching

Something somewhere is hurting

Listen to the pain in my soul

Can you hear it roar?

Don’t be fooled by my smile

Or the timid look in my eyes

Because there’s a raging storm inside

And the waves will break any ship that tries

Throwback Thursday: Writing is a process

Hello and welcome to my blog! I’m exhausted from a day at the beach today, but I haven’t written anything today (don’t ask me about the novella, the inspiration seems to come to me once a month) and I remembered it’s Thursday so it’s time for a throwback post. Let’s do this!

Writing is a process

There is this tightness in my chest…

When I suddenly remember things that have bothered me in the past and these feelings of being trapped wash over me in waves…

I feel like I’m drowning…

Me, as I type on my laptop.

I’m doing this to myself.

I’m working on a project, and I have another project on the back burner for later when I’m done with this one.

It’s a process. Writing.

My blogs, sometimes I research for them, and sometimes, like now, I just write what I feel. I’m sure you can tell the difference.

On my laptop, however, are the juicy stuff. The ones that I have to dig deep within my soul and talk about the things that make me feel most vulnerable. It’s exhausting and painful at times, but necessary for my growth and hopefully future success.

I get busy with housework and motherhood, which is all-important, so I don’t find much time to type. It’s not possible to just spend my days writing.

Inspiration comes from my experiences as a mom, as a wife, as a friend, as a sister, as a daughter, as a Muslim, as a human.

If I had no experience, I’d have nothing to write about. Often, though, my most inspiration comes at dawn, when I’m supposed to be either asleep resting or doing housework or reading.

Last night, I had a great idea to write. I wrote the whole thing in my head as I was putting my son to sleep. Moments before I fell asleep, I could feel that great idea slipping away. It’s gone now. Well, I remember bits and pieces. It had something to do with dreams, the kind you have in your sleep. I was psychoanalyzing why I’m always running away from someone in my dreams. They never seem to catch me, and I never get to see them. I just sense they’re there, and I’m afraid, so I run and hide. If someone is an expert in dream psychology, feel free to psychoanalyze me.

So I was responsible today. I didn’t sit down to write this blog until after I finished my housework. I didn’t even drink my coffee until then. I didn’t eat much, just 7 almonds, literally. I’m not proud of it. My appetite is a bit off lately and my sleep is not so good. Sometimes. Not every night. Last night I slept from 10 pm until 4 am. That’s it.

I have to go now. My son just woke up. It’s a big day today. Long to-do list.

I’m pretty much the same as I was last year, and that project was probably another book or the novella. I feel so guilty for not working on my novella. Why do I feel guilty? I write when I write. No rush. I feel like sleeping and eating and reading and watching a movie, all at once. I don’t know what to do…its a process. Self-improvement, life, writing, … It’s all a process.

Storytime: My son is getting an orange belt soon!

I hope I don’t jinx this. I’ve been feeling very heavy-hearted today. Sleepy all day since I woke up. Needing attention and demanding it in a nonloving way. All good things happened today.

When I’m like this, my son is an angel. He studied. He behaved, but then on the way to karate class (he has been going for 2 months), he told me he was going to cry throughout the class. The problem is, I don’t know if he is doing this for attention.

The coach said he is very good at karate, but he tells me he hates it. He says he doesn’t like the coach or the kids in his class, except for one kid. So I spoke to the coach and asked him to pair him with the kid he likes, and the coach obliged.

Still, my son says he hates karate and doesn’t want to go. Today was his last day. I consider switching him to gymnastics, same day, different time, but then he comes back with great news!

His coach asked me to send a video of my son doing a series of moves. He said the moves were necessary in order for him to get the orange belt in karate! I was so excited. And when we got home, my son told me:

“I’m not saying I like karate now, but the coach said I’m the best one in the class, and that made me feel good”.

How exciting is that?!

Thanksgiving Challenge: Grateful for Self-care

Hello and welcome to my blog! I’m about to try to take a nap because I’m exhausted and in a bad mood, despite drinking 2 cups of coffee today and eating lunch and then dark chocolate. I thought I’d do today’s gratitude challenge to improve my mood before I nap.

Gratitude Challenge Day 6: Self-care

I’m grateful for my hobbies, reading, and writing. They put me in a good mood.
I’m grateful for me time I get every once in a while, so I can watch movies and take walks in nature.
I’m grateful when I get a good night’s sleep, which is rare.
I’m grateful for the cups of coffee that bring me joy.
I’m grateful for when I listen to music or podcasts and they motivate me.
I’m grateful when I put together a delicious and healthy meal.

Thankfulness Challenge: Grateful for thinking, reading and writing

Hello and welcome to my blog! I haven’t done the gratitude challenge in 4 days. It’s been a busy weekend and a long Monday. Today I happen to have some unexpected me time and I am enjoying it however I can. I wish I could go out and have fun but I can’t so here I am, reminding myself to be grateful so I don’t spiral into self-pity.

Gratitude Challenge Day 5: Ability to Think, Read, and Write

I am so grateful that I can think, read and write.

I’m grateful I can for my own thoughts and do my own critical thinking. I’m grateful I have my own opinions and analysis of things.

I’m grateful for all the things I’ve learned over the years.
I’m grateful for all the teachers who have shared their wisdom and knowledge with me throughout the years.
I’m grateful for my parents and grandparents who made our education a priority and a requirement.

I’m grateful that my parents instilled a love of reading in me since I was a kid.
I’m grateful for all the books my dad bought me and for my grandfather letting me read anything in his library.
I’m grateful for the school library and the book fairs I went to and the local library in my city.

I’m grateful for the heartbreak that sparked the love of writing in me.
I’m grateful for the people who read my poems and encouraged me to keep writing.
I’m grateful to those who suggested I sell my poems.

I’m grateful to all those who read my blogs and give me feedback, encouraging me to keep writing.
I’m grateful to whoever bought from my books so far and I’m grateful to whoever will buy my books in the future.

What are you grateful for today?

Self-care ideas to do at home

Take care of yourself, be healthy, and always believe you can be successful in anything you truly want.

Hello and welcome to my blog! Lately I haven’t been eating healthily, I haven’t been sleeping well, and I’ve been overwhelmed with negative thoughts. I stay up all night reading a novel, or I watch a movie, and I call it self-care. But what is self-care?

It is the practice of taking an active role in protecting one's own health, well-being and happiness, in particular during periods of stress.

By that account, I’m not practicing self-care. So I decided to do a self-care at-home challenge on the 21 days challenges app, especially since I’m staying at home a lot.

21 self-care ideas to do at home:

1. Catch up on your favorite TV show.

2. Journal, log your emotions and experiences.

3. Practice a hobby you really enjoy.

4. Read a good book.

5. Exercise at home (you can find workout videos on YouTube).

6. Try cooking something new.

7. Bake a cake/make a dessert.

8. Clean and organize your space.

9. Call your friends and family.

10. Do a puzzle.

11. Create art (try some DIYs that you can find on Pinterest).

12. Listen to your fav songs.

13. Play board games.

14. Write a letter to someone special.

15. Take an online class.

16. Watch a film.

17. Take a nap.

18. Listen to a podcast.

19. Meditate- calm your mind and anxiety.

20. Take a relaxing bath.

21. Set your goals for the future.

I did 12 out of 21 of these challenges. Some of them, like taking a nap, never work for me. Some, like DIYs, don’t interest me. Do what works for you. You don’t have to try them all.

Self-care is also eating healthy foods, sleeping early, reaching out to family and friends, etc.

To do this challenge, go to: https://21dayschallengeapp.com/app/challenge

Fitness Update

My goal is to exercise daily for 7 minutes or walk 6000 steps. So far, I haven’t achieved that goal. I made progress today, though.

I hit 10 minutes of fast-paced activity today!
I walked 2.73 km (4,418 steps).

On average, I’m exercising 4 days a week. Last week I exercised 6 days out of 7.

I’m at 63% of my exercise goal.

What are your fitness goals? Are you making progress?

How to be positive during negative times

When did I become such a negative person? I open my mouth and all I do is complain. I don’t like being like this. My needs aren’t being met because…well, I don’t want to get into it now. I tell myself to smile. I practice it in the mirror. I tell myself I’m happy. I look around me and feel gratitude for the things I have.

The people in my life, though, that’s where all my trouble resides. I love them. I do. They love me. I know that much. They love spending time with me, but I feel their pain and I’m frustrated because I can’t help them. I can’t make them feel better. That’s beside the things that annoy me about each and every one of them. I try to keep it in because I tell myself this is how they are. Then I wonder what they are bothered from me about and it makes me even more anxious. Do I want them to tell me about things that annoy them about me? Things that I most probably can’t or won’t change? No. I’d rather not know. I want to tell them what bothers me about them, but I also want to avoid conflict and I know telling them won’t do any good because they won’t change.

Anyway, my focus right now is getting my 6-year-old son to eat breakfast. He woke up at 10 am and refuses to eat anything. He is lazily on the couch as if he is still asleep. I just suggested to him to go play with his toys, and thankfully he did. He loves to pretend play. Mornings and evenings have become a frustration to me because at night my son refuses to sleep until 11 pm and in the morning he refuses to eat until 11 am. Hopefully, if and when school starts, his sleep schedule will get better.

For now, I wanted to share a few motivating quotes I found on Pinterest. It’s one of the things I do when I feel down, search motivating quotes on Pinterest. I probably have more than 10,000 of these on my laptop and I made some as well, but searching in itself gives me joy. So if you’re feeling down or frustrated or demotivated, I hope these help.

Be the reason someone smiles today. Studies show that making someone else happy will increase your happiness.
Accept sadness, like you accept happiness. You can’t be happy all the time.
Sometimes the world may seem against you.
But don’t be so hard on yourself. Learn to forgive, learn to let go.
Everything comes to you at the right time. Work hard but be patient.
Grow through what you go through.
You survived another day. I’m so proud of you!
Here is some humor. Have a cup of positiviTEA.
Don’t stop working towards your dreams.
Don’t let people or things hold you back or drag you down.
Live as if everything is a miracle.
Be your own sunshine.

Terrible things are happening in the world right now. Poverty. Wars. Crime. So many negative events and I’m not saying to turn a blind eye and live in blissful ignorance, but rather adopt solution-oriented thinking. Sitting around and complaining never helped anyone