So Miss Iman and I ventured off to Cyprus for Eid which was beautiful. I had another trip half planned but she kinda sorta sold me on the idea of beaches and tanning and sunshine and that pretty much did it (I really don’t ask for much!)

I don’t want to get into too much detail, but we rented a car and essentially road-tripped along the coast which was exhilarating to say the least. Good old google maps made navigating a whole lot easier and having a car definitely allowed for more sightseeing and freedom to stop wherever we wanted on a complete whim! Hotels were booked as each day progressed, literally the morning of, just because! Flew into Larnaca via Lebanon (not a fan already purely based on my airport experience) and within 30-40 minutes, Kalimera Cyprus!

Started in Larnaca, worked our way through Limassol and stumbled upon a random secluded beach stop which we came back for. Spent a day in the mountains in Miliou where we nearly got into an accident on the way but the drive up and through the mountains was beautiful. Eid was spent in Pafos and I woke up extra early to catch the sunrise which was one of those heartwarming soul sessions that you know I love x also jumped the fence to get into an abandoned Turkish masjid because a masjid had to be visited on Eid one way or another!  Did some tourist archaeological exploring there, and visited a couple monasteries, one of which was built into the mountain which was pretty neat! Next we were off to Protaras and good old Ayia Napa and visited the infamous Cape Greco which we hiked up super sharp rocks and braved the wind to get super cool photos lol I have never ever ever seen water as clear as I did in Protaras and at Cape Greco! Pictures do it no justice, but wallah the clarity was subhanallah! and we went parasailing! yay!! it was my first time and soaring over the coast with beautiful water and coastline beneath your feet is just one of those moments you’ll never forget! Miss Iman also faced her fears and sang karaoke in public which we were all super proud of! and then it was back to Larnaca where we visited Hala Sultan Tekke, which wikipedia calls a ‘Muslim shrine’, so we’ll leave it at that, but you also know that I love masjids in different countries and the peace and serenity that comes with entering such scared space etc. etc. so yes. My heart and soul was content! There was this open compound space right beside the masjid which kinda sorta acted like a cat sanctuary; apparently the general public uses it as a drop off for strays or cats they no longer want as they know/assume that the caretakers of the masjid are obliged by God to look after the animals and not be cruel to them, and Miss Iman was essentially in heaven. So many cats and kitties and cuteness overload and the sun began to set and it was yet another soul warming moment for the books x

All in all it was a much needed relaxing getaway to an underrated part of the world where Allah hooked us up in terms of hotel upgrades and his colour schema when putting the world together was/is just so freaking on point mashallah subhanallah alhamdulillah x people were incredibly friendly and approachable and being able to smile and wave at everyone and engage in conversation with random strangers is something I realize I miss and take for granted when I’m back Kuwait! Enjoy the pictures, know that none of them do the country any justice, and be sure to add it to your list of travels in the future inshallah! xoxo

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Its officially been 3 years since I’ve been in Kuwait and 6 months since I was last home. I like doing these end of year posts because it allows for some much needed reflection on all the goodness and madness that took place and what I’ve learned from it.

This year away was one of the best and worst times thus far and there came a point where I was ready to give it all up and consciously commit to a complacent, mundane life I know I could easily achieve back home. I think I survived pretty good. I was given an opportunity to find myself, who I am and what I want, in the worst of situations and learned a little thing or two about people. People who matter and people who don’t. People who bring light and love and goodness into your life and are there to watch you ugly cry or grab a ‘Mackers’ at 2 in the morning or inspire you to make an hour on the treadmill and who you know deep down will be there for you no matter where in the world they might be. People that motivate you and push you to follow your dreams and to do what you’re good at and willingly support you because they genuinely believe in you and all that you have to offer the world. I learned that family is a word which encompasses so much more than those who share the same bloodline or bed as you and I feel unbelievably blessed and lucky to have found that this year alongside a constant support system when at times I just really wanted my mama to make it all better x I’ve written about the inconsistency of this life before and how it has the potential to ruin you and your sense of belonging and long-term comfort which I do despise, but this year I’m holding on to the fact that people always change but the memories don’t; focusing on the good memories of course. The fact that each year is never the same as the last (neither are the people unfortunately) made me consciously appreciate and cherish each and every moment of living; saying whatever I wanted to say, doing whatever I wanted to do, putting 3 white sugars into my cappuccino whilst feeling unabashed and having no regrets about any of it (the white sugars eventually became 2.5 brown sugars for calories sake but that’s besides the point!)

I was involved in my very first deportation scare, my very first car accident where I thought I was going to get hurt real bad because I wasn’t wearing a seatbelt and fractured my nose, got my wisdom tooth taken out (which is a big life deal because I’m a crybaby and it took me 3 weeks to recover..), contracted pinkeye, realized its possible to give yourself a panic attack, learned that time and a bit of faith can work wonders, started going to the gym consistently (I’m no longer the owner of a pancake ass thankyouverymuch), started reading for pleasure again, have begun to stop using salt in me cooking (which mama might have an issue with), had some really cool opportunities in terms of social media and events etc. which was uber exciting!, half mastered liquid eyeliner which is a task in and of itself (cottonbuds are key), and learned how to download movies and shows on me own (go me!) Going back to uni also turned out to be a good shout Alhamdulillah and inshallah it keeps going well. I travelled on my own, made friends with complete strangers, and tried new things well outside my comfort zone. Not sure what the summer holds yet in terms of travel but time spent with mama and family is definitely well overdue! (I’m listening to you niggs x)

I’ve realised that sometimes you can’t plan for everything and taking a step back to let life take its course is what your soul needs. Everything really does happen for a reason and whatever is meant to fall in place will do so on its own accord, on its own time. I know it sounds really easy but in reality it consumes you and makes you anxious and a little bit craycray, but its one of those things you’ve just got to deal with and find your own way to cope. Not knowing whats around the corner allows for that glimmer of hope and faith that something good is to come which is often just enough to keep us going!

Hope everyone has a wonderful and safe summer and a belated Ramadan Kareem! Inshallah it’s been a blessed month thus far and that you’ve been fortunate to spend it amongst loved ones x Be safe, travel safe, tell your mama you love her, give endless amounts of hugs to people you care about, put happiness and love into everything you do, give your time, smile at people, mind your manners, “be happy, stay happy, and make others happy”, and don’t forget to keep in touch with your favourite felicias x x x

its our last weekend in Kuwait as we head home in a couple days and I’m already starting to miss it. The weathers been creeping up on a daily basis and with Ramadan coming up next week, temperatures are set to hit at least 65degrees which is a bit cray cray so I think we’re all thankful we won’t be here for that.

Whenever it’s time to go back ‘home’ there’s a whole lot of feelings and thinkings passing through which make me question this life that we’ve chosen to live abroad. I think it’s safe to refer to ourselves as expats as we most probably will be away for a couple more years (inshallah) but life as an expat is a tricky one. You’re away from everything familiar and your entire comfort zone, which is great in terms of personal growth and adventure etc etc. but it leaves little room for personal connection and ‘real’ friendships. Not to say it’s impossible, I think this year especially we’ve met a few amazing souls who have truly become family and we’ll all definitely keep in touch for ages, and fair enough this might not apply to everyone, but I just feel it’s a tad ‘meh’ and a bit of a reality check maybe. The other day one of our friends went back to Ireland, the first of our group to depart and we all secretly felt this sadness come over us (the boys didn’t cry but you could tell lol). He won’t be coming back to Kuwait and although we only met this school year, we all had become really close and had become accustomed to seeing each other almost every day and hanging out etc. and it all just stinks a little bit. As an expat you have to learn to ‘let-go’ a lot easier and kind of live this life of inconsistency; which is great at times, but if you’re someone who gets attached quite easily like me, it’s not the greatest feeling or mental state you want to be placed in. You feel conflicted because on one hand you’ve chosen this way of life for yourself for whatever reason, knowing the consequences which come with it but you still really love it, and on the other hand when you see everyone back home so ‘together’ and ‘regular’ you envy (in a nice way) that sense of normalcy which could have been yours if you had stayed. As an expat, I think when you meet new people who are on that same wave-length as you, you naturally gravitate towards cultivating an closeness with them which kind of begins immediately because in a way they’re going to be all you’ve got for that year. For me anyways lol and that might sound a little creeperish, but you skip that phase of getting to know someone inside out and giving yourself that period to decide if you want them in your life or not and talking to your friends about them etc etc. It’s more along the lines of ‘hey! you’re not from here, I’m not from here, we like similar things, we can have a laugh, you like chocolate and tea, so lets be friends for the year and travel together!’ For example, teachers come from all over the world yea, it might be their first time ever abroad or first time in a certain place or whatever and meet other teachers. A month into the year you’ve got a week off and end up going someplace with another teacher who is essentially a stranger to you is kind of cool no?! Back home there are people I’ve known for ages who we would never travel with, yet we would gladly travel with any one of the new people we’ve met this year. (I’m not sure if this makes any sense or what my point is, but it’s more along the lines of thinking aloud if anything..)

I was speaking to someone a few days ago and I mentioned that when you’re away everyone forgets about you, and I feel that to be true to some extent. Not that it infuriates me or I expect friends and family to stop living their lives or anything of the sort, but when you begin to watch your former life and the people in it through your phone or via social media sites, it tugs at your heart strings a little bit. I’ve missed countless birthdays and special moments, uni graduations, my grandma being extremely ill, my brother and sister growing up and becoming real-life adults and flying the coop whilst mama dearest has mastered the art of whatsapp so we can keep in touch and it makes my heart hurt x ‘Edible Arrangements’ has become a sad reality of how my affection is forced to be showered upon family as are florists and cookiegram deliveries L

I know I might sound really unhappy at the moment lol but I’m not, and that’s where the inner conflict lies. I love my job and the opportunity to be doing what I do and where I work and all of that and alhamdulillah a million times for everything we’ve got and been blessed with and had the chance to do. I wouldn’t change a thing and I stand by my choice to do what I’ve done, but at times I sit and wonder what my life would be like if I hadn’t left so early and embarked upon ‘life’ when I did. I graduated from uni 2years ago and had been accepted to do my Masters at King’s in the UK which was  ‘the plan’ lol but then Kuwait came up and I figured why not I feel like I’m going off on a tangent here lol but the point is that I was 22 when I left home, a month after graduation, which looking back now for me makes me feel like I was a baby and wonder how my mama let me go lol bless mama with the world inshallah she’s never ever ever closed the windows to the world for any of her kids x I was 17 or 18 when she let me go to Nepal on my own to work in an orphanage where I had a mini heart attack on the plane realizing what I had gotten myself into and how far away from home I actually was lol and my wee sister survived 6 months studying and travelling in East Asia on her own after randomly chilling in Rwanda which even I had reservations about lol but I think doing everything when I did allowed me to put things into perspective in terms of my life and how I envision it to play out inshallah x It might not seem like a big deal to some people about leaving on your own and travelling etc etc. but for me, coming from a really close family and even being a Muslim girl and having my mama willingly push us and encourage us to travel and go wherever our heart desires is kind of a big deal. I know some Muslims see it odd for girls to travel on their own and without a mahram and I’m sure assume the parents have no control over children etc etc. but oh well.

Someone left a comment on one of my posts asking ‘what words of wisdom do you have for young Toronto native females who are looking to marry rich and live lavishly in third world countries?’ and that stings because I don’t feel I portray that image via my blog or any other postings. We got married when I was 20 (my choice and again love to mama for always supporting her kids x) and both students who are still paying off uni debt, and live within our means. Regardless of, I don’t think I need to justify my life to anyone but boo you whoever you are!

It’s nearly time for juma (Friday prayers) so I shall be off. Last Friday before Ramadan inshallah so Ramadan Mubarak to all of you anticipating this special month! Inshallah it’s a meaningful one for all of us and we take advantage of it x Got loads of packing to do as well and maybe last minute shopping if Shaheer agrees! Mabrouk to everyone who’s also graduated and have a fabulous weekend!! Xx

Back from Canada as of a few weeks ago and settled back into routines and markings. Grannie is doing much better now alhamdulillah x Schools been busy; the week I got back we had inspections and people visiting which made everyone a tad bit on edge and it was just hectic all around. We also have an International Day coming up next Wednesday so expect pictures from that! Similar to what was done last year (if you recall seeing pictures from ‘Italy’ that my class did last year), except at this school its a whole production filled with song and dance and lights; the whole ten yards! Exciting no?! Our country this year is Costa Rica as the other 2nd grade classes are Argentina and Panama so we’re all sticking to the ‘Americas’. Cannot wait to show you my board!! so so cool and so proud of it! Kudos to my TA who is a genius and loves art and detail like me and never thinks my ideas are OTT and goes with it lol we’re a good team alhamdullillah! A girl in my class had brought in a cake for me upon my return with a note from her mum saying ‘because she love you too much!’ which was adorbs lol and I also received a personalized mug from another girl which melted my heart a little. As frustrated as I get and however many feelings I feel at times whilst teaching lol my ickle class still gets me every time <3

err we went desert camping this past weekend; a few teachers from school had organized a day in the desert similar to what was apparently done last year so we went along. It was uber cool and not what I expected. Not ‘glamping’ lol it was essentially a fenced compound with about 5 tents within the enclosure. From the outside they look a bit daft but step in and you’ve got beds in one, sofas in another with TV’s and electricity, a grass garden, a tiled kitchen, a regular toilet lol all the comforts of home really. We spent the day playing games and just chilling; there was a barbeque with some delish meats and salads and it was a really lovely day out! 🙂

Also visited the Qout market; again you might recall seeing/reading about it last year. The atmosphere hadn’t changed much, but we enjoyed strolling and eating lol btw, Evian do Kenzo water?!! only in Kuwait init!

We did a Thanksgiving (American) with everyone as well a couple weeks ago which was nice; we had a potluck, so I made apple cumble and was quite chuffed with meself haha felt a tad bit over dressed for the occasion as it wasn’t ‘that’ type of fancy dress Thankgiving lol but oh well! My first American Thanksgiving accomplished! Usually we do turkey and mash and all that jazz with the famnily back home and go to the cottage for Canadian Thanksgiving so nothing drastically different there!

Also! Parent teacher interviews! on a weekend! and I survived! haha the same week I got back, interviews were set for the Saturday meaning we really only got one day off school resulting in the feeling of an extra long week 🙁 but! after interviews Iman and I visited one of the malls which was holding a free manicure type thing so we figured why not after such a long day lol aandd I finally got the chance to meet the lovely lady who had invited me to her salon last year (Marshmallows @marshmallows_kwt) ! Such a lovely person who insisted on sitting with us whilst we got our nails done and chatted with us as though we’d been friends for ages which was really lovely! Hi Shahad if you’re reading this! If you’re in Kuwait reading this, definitely go visit the salon for a mani/pedi, hair colouring or somethang! Guaranteed you won’t leave disappointed!

Other than that not much else has been happening. Have a couple arts&crafts pieces the girls have made which turned out cutesy which I’ll post, and something hella exciting as well but don’t want to jinx it so say inshallah lol hopefully you’ll know soon enough! Sharing some pictures from here and there and inshallah I’ll be back on here soon enough! xx

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eep! So yesterday was spent catching up on posts as you’ve probably noticed lol still a couple reviews and pictures from the IMFDF event which hosted Dina Tokio, Basma K, Nuralailalov etc. so will get on that soon inshallah!

In the mean time, we’re back in Kuwait and it is hot! not that I’m complaining because I lovers my sunshine, but it’s been quite humid here and there which we didn’t experience last year but oh well. We’ve just about settled into our new flat which is a jillion times better than last year alhamdulillah x the only thing I miss is being close to the Gulf as we were but it’s a small price to pay for staying where we are.

Our new school is wonderful so far! Everyone’s uber friendly and most of the newbies are around our age so we’ve all been hanging out and having a good laugh which again is a huge difference from last year! The staff is a lot more diverse (in terms of not everyone being from mid-west America) and we now have friends from Ireland and Australia so yay!

The first day of school for students is tomorrow (Sunday) and I’m a tad bit nervous and excited for it all to go down. Classroom is decorated and organized and with ceilings being so much higher than last year we were told to go OTT and put things everywhere! haven’t had a chance to take pictures of all the cuteness in our class but will do so in another post. My TA took charge of our welcome back bulletin board and I love the Elsa she made! I obviously had to add the Canadian touch so made some paper snowflakes to go with the theme; I feel like that’s something all Canadians learn to make at some point in grade school lol

Other than that we’ve just been settling in, and doing shizz loads of laundry; one of the boxes I’d left in the other flat got wet because a pipe burst etc etc and my clothes and hijabs got stanked and moldy-ish so things had to be thrown and washed a few times lol haven’t taken many pictures which is a shock to Shaheer but I’m sure we’ll be on it soon enough!

Hope everyone’s enjoying whatever’s left of the summer and looking forward to another school year! Lots of luck and love to everyboday! (is it weird that the first day of school feels like New Years..?!) haha xo.

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