Calendar - 2015

Calendar made with recycled* supplies: left over party boxes, old cork board, and printed labels. Will add challenges and treats in each container.

(*This year we are challenging ourselves to reduce, reuse, and recycle.)


Star and Crescent


Crafts and Activities for Ramadan

Pre- Ramadan Dua Corner

Creating intentional Supplication (Dua) Space to focus our attention span and emotions, in order to normalize conversations with the Divine.

The idea for this came about when I wanted to collect supplication for myself to be used during Ramadan.

My kids loved the idea and wanted to collect their own supplications. We ended up using plain Bristol boards, left-over paper, small envelopes, and plain index-cards.

Most of the cards are marked private, so I'm not allowed to share. Strangely, some of them complain about a Big Friendly Bossy Monster. Mmhmm.

We will also collect and copy our favorite supplications.

Personally, I have realized this is a great tool for me to spy on my children and quietly judge their thought-process. I kid. It is lovely to see how they understand their relationship
with Allah swt and the world around them with these simple notes.



Margaret Wheatley on Aggression

"In organizations [hmm, say ,classrooms, homes, mosques, churches, schools, families? ] real power and energy is generated through relationships. The patterns of relationships and the capacities to form them are more important than tasks, functions, roles, and positions."

"Aggression is the most common behavior used by many organizations, a nearly invisible medium that influences all decisions and actions."

"Aggression is inherently destructive of relationships. People and ideologies are pitted against each other, believing that in order to survive, they must destroy the opposition."

"In this present culture, we need to find the means to work and live together with less aggression if we are to resolve the serious problems that afflict and impede us."

"Without aggression, it becomes possible to think well, to be curious about differences, and to enjoy each other's company."

- Margaret Wheatley

What would it take for us to just deal with what is? To not need to be always engaged in changing the world?


"Yitzhak Perlman, the great violinist, was playing in New York. Yitzhak Perlman was crippled by polio as a young child, so the bottom part of his body doesn’t work well and he wears these very prominent leg braces and comes on in crutches, in a very painful, slow way, hauling himself across the stage. Then he sits down and, very carefully, unbuckles the leg braces and lays them down, puts down his crutches, and then picks up his violin. So, this night the audience had watched him slowly, painfully, walk across the stage; and he began to play. And, suddenly, there was a loud noise in the hall that signaled that one of his four strings on his violin had just snapped.
Everyone expected that they would be watching Yitzhak Perlman put back the leg braces, walk slowly across the stage, and find a new violin. But this is what happened. Yitzhak Perlman closed his eyes for a moment. Yitzhak Perlman paused. And then he signaled for the conductor to begin again. And he began from where they had left off. And here’s the description of his playing, from Jack Riemer in the Houston Chronicle:
“He played with such passion, and such power, and such purity, as people had never heard before. Of course, everyone knew that it was impossible to play this symphonic work with three strings. I know that. You know that. But that night, Yitzhak Perlman did not know that. You could see him modulating, changing, recomposing the piece in his head. At one point, it sounded like he was de-tuning the strings to get new sounds from them that they had never made before. When he finished, there was an awe-filed silence in the room. And then people rose and cheered. Everyone was screaming and cheering and doing everything we could to show how much we appreciated what he had just done. He smiled. He wiped the sweat from his brow. He raised his bow to us. And then he said, not boastfully, but in a quiet and pensive and reverent tone, “‘You know, sometimes it is the artist’s task to find out how much music you can still make with what you have left.'”
Sometimes, it is our task to find out how much music we can make with what we have left. What is the name that is big enough to hold your fearlessness, that is big enough to call you into fearlessness? That is big enough to break your heart? To allow you to open to the suffering that is this world right now and to not become immobilized by fear and to not become immobilized by comfort? What is the way in which you can hold your work so that you do feel free from hope…and therefore free from fear?"

Margaret Wheatley


Cherry Tree

Sour Cherries - you have patiently taught me a lot about life: how you and I, and everything else on earth, is connected. And basically, how I don't know crap about gardening.
You've shown me that I am not the Master of you. It was irrelevant that I couldn't differentiate between a Sweet or Sour Cherry Tree, you still grew and bore fruit, and somehow foreign birds and bugs magically appeared and devoured every single piece you carefully produced .

Nothing is ever wasted in nature. Except by us, humans.

I've watched you humbly serve the animal community for several years, but today, is the day, I've discovered --that you, My Friend, are used in pie fillings, jams, and countless desserts!

As a result, I proudly partake in making our first ever batch of Jam-ish sauce, as you, my wise friend, hold back your giggles. That's ok... because this sauce will be the envy of the world!!!

Watch out world...
for iftar time,
as we need to feast upon this deliciousness,
as soon as we break open our fast!!


Rarely, if ever, do I see advice that reminds people to build and return to a heathy center. (I feel very lucky to have met enough people to help me realize that in my low moments). That spiritual/emotional centre is so important – from picking partners, to raising children, to making daily mundane decisions - it helps us curb our inanity in innumerable ways. Mostly, we are trapped with “Islam on Steroids” brand of counseling where your legs and brain are not fast enough, to keep up with the so called ‘Sacredness” of the Holy One (insert your clique leader here). Shame and perfection are celebrated at the expense of the questioner’s dignity. And side –eye and condescending examples are used to put you back into the assembly line.
This piece exhibited empathy for me. Empathy is the first step to help someone return to their center. As, Dr. Jackson, in his lectures has perceptively stated, One can live with a lot of broken rules of Shariah, but what repentance can there be from a broken soul or psyche?