Step inside my Ramadan Freezer!

Meal preps is an essential thing in Ramadan. For me, it saves me time and keep home cooked food stored right when you need the most! That is while going through a tough day with a 2 year old while fasting.

Okay before I go ahead, if you’re a mum who enjoys buying all ready made stuff, you’re amazing too. If you’re someone who likes ordering, you’re perfect too and if you’re someone who has help at home in making this- you’re super lucky!! This is my personal way as I enjoy doing all this. Please don’t feel bad while reading that you’re less worthy;) instead you can say – ”omg such a jobless mama 😂!”

I thought of taking you guys through my freezer, a typical Pakistani one in Ramadan. A week before Ramadan, I start preparing. This includes deep cleaning my home, rearranging shelves, ironing a few nice shalwar kameez and preparing food items that can be frozen.

I’m sure many of you do exactly or way better than this.

So here are few things that you will find in my fridge and freezer! Also you’re most welcome to join me for iftar! I’m prepared😛

Chicken Spring rolls! Ok- I love these!! So I make sure I am well stocked. One roll in my iftar is a must. I prepare the mixture with boiled and shredded chicken, cabbage, carrots, spring onions and capsicum. I even add boiled thin spaghetti! A little soya sauce, vinegar – salt and pepper! Done!

Boiled chicken breast chunks! These come in handy for quick chicken sandwiches. Just defrost, shread , add mayonnaise or anything you like with some iceberg lettuce and you’re good to go! 🙂 – Also, I don’t throw away the chicken stock, freeze them in batches as its super helpful to be added in other food you’re cooking 😎

Chickpeas: Okay this is a must if you’re a desi! Boiled chick peas – white and black! A nice spicy chana chat with papri , yoghurt, and chaat masala. Such a help to be stocked well! Not just chana chat, they’re super helpful in making quick chana pulao when you’re totally out of ideas to cook.

Mini Samosas: These I made yesterday as I was missing having them in iftar. Crispy and spicy. I made the mixture with chicken mince, onions, coriander and green chilies- perfect crunchy bite sized for iftar. In a few ,I just added shredded cheese as my husband likes them 🙂

Shami Kababs: Sehri is incomplete without a shami kabab with paratha. There are days when you’re out of eggs or not feeling like having the usual oatmeal, omlette or salan( gravy) , fry a kabab and enjoy with paratha! These you will find in my freezer all around the year. Not just Ramadan.

Frozen fruits for smoothies: This is something new that I’m doing this Ramadan. I have frozen batches of berries and bananas ( that went extra soft) in my freezer. For iftar, I just add them in the blender along with some fresh yoghurt and milk and a refreshing quick smoothie is ready! No need for ice! Very very helpful.

Homemade Tamarind Sauce: no chat is complete without this sweet imli sauce. So I prepared a batch of this to last me all Ramadan. Just imli, jaggery, few dates and kalunji. Hayee chatpati and mazedar!

Along with all these, I have a packet of french fries, frozen pizza dough and frozes parathas always stocked up!! With a toddler, it’s super helpful to be over prepared! all this is really helping me to focus more on using the time for zikr and duas rather than in the kitchen!

What’s your Ramadan freezer like?

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Okay before I go ahead, if you're a mum who enjoys buying all ready made stuff, you're amazing too. If you're someone who likes ordering, you're perfect too and if you're someone who has help at home in making these , you're super lucky!! This is my personal way as I enjoy doing all this. Please don't feel bad while reading that you're less worthy;) instead you can say – ''omg such a jobless mama 😂!'' . . Also please- we get one month a year to munch on samosas and pakorays- healthy gurus please let us enjoy and stand far away getting jealous on seeing us munching with green mint chutney! Hayeee😂😂 . . Link in bio @frommummytonayel – I would love to read what is in your freezer this Ramadan. Please leave me a comment! 🙂 enjoy 😉 . . ————————————————————————— #timeoutkidsdubai #uaemoms #dubaimoms #growingup #motherhood #dubaiblogger #uaemomblogger #momtogs #littleandbrave #honestparenting #mumlife #oureverydaymoments #letthembelittle #uniteinmotherhood #thatsdarling #nothingisordinary #mashAllah #mummyblogger #childhoodunplugged #clickinmoms #littlethings #dubaiexpat #hijabiblogger #muslimmom #motherhood #foodblogger #muslimstyle #mbdailyposts #muslimshblogger #ramadan #ramadanfood

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7 reasons why I’m loving Lahore!

1. Winters!!

The cold weather, lots of chaye and mom phali ( peanuts) ! Heater in the living room and sweaters! Yes this is the best time of the year!

2. Helpers!!

Literally Yes very literally since I have come I am lazying like a princess. Theres a girl to wash clothes, a cook, a cleaner, a watchman and one more helper! Ma sha Alah! And nayel loves all of them- so I’m not even picking him up! Hayeee Pakistan k shashkkay ( blessings of Pakistan)!

3. Halwa Poori Nashta (desi breakfast)!

It’s a must when we’re in Lahore. Ghalib Market’s halwa pori. We sit outside on the small side street and hot puris with channa and halwa are served. On sides, methi lassi ( sweet yogurt drink) and fresh orange juice! Beautiful sunshine , chilly weather and hot puris ! Nothing can beat that!

4. Spas and Parlour:

Since I have come, I have had three trips to Parlours and I guess many more to come. Long due manicures and pedicure, haircut , massage and treatments! It’s way cheaper and better than Dubai. Atleast I have help at home for Nayel, so I’m enjoying the little pampering blessings to the core.

5. Home cooked food:

That feeling when you don’t have to worry about groceries and cooking! The best 😍🙈 – guilty much but can’t deny. Each meal is cooked, presented well and served with garm gher k roti right in front of me. And not to forget the yummy taste! Hayeee- maza he ajata hai! ❤️

6. Star and May:

So star is our dog and May is our cat, and they’re super part of our family! Kids and us everyone loves them. Star is my mamu’s dog but since they are now settled in Korea, she stays in Lahore at mama’s home. And May is our own rescued cat. One is in the other one out – and life’s beautiful with them 💕

7. Family Reunions:

After a long time my entire family is getting together for a week all in one house! Big fat cousin party and lots of fun planned inshAllah! Stay tuned for more updates on my blog☺️

Aren’t mummy’s home the best place ever! What do you love the most with mummmies??

7 things under 20 dirhams that I love in the UAE 🇦🇪 


Disclaimer- Please do not think this as a usual tourism blog as I will be sharing my utimate favorite things I love as an expat here in the UAE!

I have been living in the UAE for about 8 years now- a little break in between though’, and its my home- a place I simply love for so so many good reasons. But this blog is a pick of few unusual things that are so worth while to try here ! Check them out :

1. Lgaimat :


These are swet dumplings coated with date syrup ! A traditional Emirati sweet. It’s an Arabic word that means ‘bite sized’. They’re crunchy on the outside and soft and airy from the inside. You guys have to try these if you’re youre in Dubai-  the best place nowadays is Global Village!

Here’s one easy to try recipe: https://www.google.ae/amp/s/tasteofemarat.wordpress.com/2015/06/22/lgeimat/amp/

Also if I’m craving them too much, I just use this dumpling mix and make them at home. 😋

2. Shawarmas! 
All time favorite and a must. A good good shawarma. Mine needs to be oozing with lots of garlic, fries and mukhalal on side( pickle) yum!! I’m finding it hard to get a good shwarma in Dubai besides Automatic. In Sharjah however there are plenty option; you have to try Laffah, Mazzrah Cafeteria ( near Rolla Shj) – basically nywhere 🤪. For just 5-8 aed 💕💕 a good tummy-faction!

3. Arabian Henna! No Eid or special occasion is incomplete without this! I loveeee the traditional Arabic Henna patters as they’re bold and beautiful. You will always find a lady applying this for you in a mall or a desert safari camp! Global village, Saloons, Bastakiya- plenty option. I also had a black henna once, but wouldn’t recommend it as it’s very harmful. The red/brown one is the best.


4. Karak Chaye:

Cafeterias on the roadside sells a nerve kicking cup of karak chai for 1 aed. Actually in Jumeirah for 10 aed 😂. That’s why I love Northern emirates of UAE😋. All our long drives, beach walks, stop overs and sisters day out – this is a super must. They also have green tea and Sulemani Chai which we take on after-dinner drives.



6. Twisted Fries on stick!

Okay I might sound a little silly but I first had them at Qasba in Sharjah at a fun fair. They insert a grilling stick in a potato and cut it making a spiral kind of shape and deep fry until golden! Then you choose a flavour masala to be sprinkled over and yum yum enjoy! ( almost salivating and 🤤)

7. Harees:

A must in Ramadan here in the UAE, a hot porridge kind- blend of ground wheat and meat. It’s not spicy at all but so so healthy and yummy!

=”https://frommummytonayel.files.wordpress.com/2017/11/img_1847.jpg”> Taken from google. I didn’t have a nice one![/capti

Which one is your favorite from these? Please leave me a comment and tell me what am I missing here in the UAE. Would love to try!


This post is part of the UAE Mom Bloggers Blog Hop for UAE’s National Day on December 2.


Do check out other posts from our bloggers:
Oatmeal, Carrot and Apple Muffins – Thoughts Over Chai
Popsicle Stick Flag Craft – Stars In The Desert
The Spirit of the Nation – Explored by Mafaza
UAE Flag Paper Pinwheel – Mumzy Notebook
UAE Keepsake Box – Sand In My Toes
UAE Flag Colors Lunch Box – Cuddles & Crumbs

How to host dinner/lunch parties at home with a Toddler

Just got done with a family dinner at my place! Such a hard work and then the food gets gobbled over in mintues! And I absolutely hate cleaning up ! I mean seriously, I love and enjoy cooking food. I can cook loads and loads, but please don’t ask me to clear up the after mess and wash the dishes. Infact – offer me a cup of hot mint green tea and massage my feet ( right) !

So this blog is all about my experience.

Just really thought of sharing my personal examples of how I host dinner parties with my little toddler ‘Nayel’ around. Might be helpful to few mummies out there.

Ta daaa!! here’s my check list of getting things sorted out for a dinner at your place with a baby/ toddler.

1. Plan – atleast 3 days before the dinner night, you need to make a checklist of what you will be cooking. I always make my list on my phone’s notepad. Not just about the food, plan your sitting arrangement, your table set up, and your Toddler’s dealing for the day 😂. It was an ipad overdose day! No matter how guilty I felt, it really helped him to stay busy and I got to done with chores. Shh! ( mummy confession )< strong>2. Organize- this is absolutely the key. So once you have planned everything, the next thing is hitting a grocery store. Buy all your essential that you need for the party. A tip: To stay in budget, don’t go hungry, the probability of you buying double and unnecessary stuff increases right away😂. Here’s a simple way to divide your list:

✔️ Meat

✔️vegetables and fruits

✔️frozen items

✔️ disposables

✔️drinks

✔️dry ingredients

✔️fresh flowers or any other decorations ( candles are my must !)

3. Start a day before: yes! With a lil one in the house, theres no way you can do everything in a day! Even if you think you can, you end up being totally exhausted and dull faced- stinky too! Keep it easy and smooth for yourself and start cooking a day earlier. For today’s dinner, I semi cooked my biryani gravy, pasta sauce and seekh kabab handi yesterday. Today wasn’t as hectic then. I had plenty of time to chill around with Nayel, and stay calm overall. Oh also got dressed and did some 💄 makeup! Finally, it gives you an opportunity and time to actually sit with everyone rather than acting like an octopus with two hands in the kitchen and two outside😂.

4. Use Disposables! If you don’t have a helper or a dishwasher ,save yourself from the horror of dishwashing. If you have a casual family dinner, I’m sure everyone understands how hard it is to work with a baby/ toddler! So serve in beautiful disposables and throw them away! ( smart mummy) – not so eco- friendly, but cmon you’re a mum, happens sometimes 😬

5. Breath – Ok this one I usually forget, but thanks to Nayel’s daddy who keep reminding me to chill! Like today was a bit disaster as all my Haleem got kharab ( messed up) right when it was dinner time!😩no idea how!! Daddy was kind enough to grab some from a restaurant – (student biryani in Barsha dubai) and let me tells you- it was delicious!! Why didn’t I think of that before 😐☺️. Don’t aim for perfection! It’s absolutely fine to ask for help and order some food too 😍

6. The table setup : I’ve got a small home and a dinning table for 4 which extends to become a table for 6. Bought it from ikea! Love it!! But my guests were more than 6 hence I decided to present food in a buffet style. This is my favorite! Everyone gets to take food and sit anywhere they like. For a buffet set up, remember to set your plate and cutlery at one end following with salads next, main course, rice and dessert in the other end. This keeps the flow going on ( how you see in buffet restaurants) and keep the traffic moving. Desserts are optional. Sometimes I like to serve them after the dinner but today as it was just a cake that I baked, I kept it on the table with the food right at the end. To make the table presentable, add fresh plants/ flowers and candles, beautiful table runners or mats. Go creative! You can also give it a color theme!

7. Enjoy! Finally – have fun!! Compliment yourself , take loads of pictures and eat! Usually the host is so tired in serving and asking everyone else that they don’t eat properly. Remember you’re a mom! Feed some food to ur baby and yourself too!

I had a fabulous time and everyone enjoyed the dinner. Alhamdullilah!!Just cleared up the living room dumping all the plates in the sink as my cleaner would come in the morning to wash them ! Wohoo! Kept the little leftovers in the fridge for next day happiness ❤️. Nayel’s asleep and Im going to tuck right in the bed next to him , hugging him tight — Now.

Nite Nite – hope you enjoyed reading. How would I know? Please leave me a comment!

xx

7 WAYS ON HOW TO BE REALLY ‘MORE PRESENT’ WITH YOUR KIDS


This is something I have been pondering over alot. Now as Nayel sleeps next to me after an hour long session of not -wanting -to- sleep 😂,  I am writing this post for all the mothers out there who are really busy in their everyday routines. Be it a housewife or a working mommy, we all sail in the same boat. As a full time stay- at -home mum, I am loaded with every possible chore.One thing after the other keeps coming up. I really feel uptight with a gazillion things at one time :all demanding my full attention! Do you guys feel the same tooo? Moreover a nice cherry on the top- I  easily get distracted by silly things which are not at all important. And my 15 min chore gets into a 50 min one ! 😫 Happens with you too? Well congratulations, you’re not alone! 👏🏻I think 99.9 %of mommies get trapped into the same delima.

It’s an everyday struggle. Now the question remains, with all this and a fully demanding toddler or a baby , how do you make sure you’re actually spending some quality time by being really present for ‘them’?

Well , let me assure you. It is a constant struggle. There’s no perfection to it. Being in the 21st century , surrounded by our very own social media as a best friend- we really have so many things craving our time. While technology and the internet definitely has its benefits, there are also many negative effects.

Therefore , I have highlighted some of the ways which will help us as mothers to really spend some quality time with our lil ones. A more foucsed and presence involvement I guess. Let’s tackle this today as like-minded moms who love our kids, want to be with them, and want to maintain good mental health as well. (Post contains affiliate links.)

“You will never have this day with your children again. Tomorrow they’ll be a little older than they were today. This day is a gift.” — Jen Hatmaker

Read: The dangers of present but absent parenting http://amotherfarfromhome.com/present-but-absent-parent//

  1. Limiting Social Media: yepp! This one is hard for me! I think that being a stay at home mom, it is easy to feel isolated and staying connected on social media can help us to feel more connected. It has helped me alot! But like there’s a boundary to every thing else, its to this too. Few ways that might help could be- finding an hour in the day where you promsie yourself not to reach to your phones. And then treat yourself with a dark chocolate 🍫 😋😋 or perhaps setting a time where phones are kept far away from our reach!
  2. Sharing responsibilites: If you’re a mom you automatically qualify to be a super hero! But that doesn’t mean you have to do every single chore yourself. It’s absolutely ok to divide and share responsibilites. It’s a perfect thing to say ‘No’ sometimes. Delegate chores. If you have more kids, let them take charge of small everyday things. You will be surprised to see how much your kids do. We always underestimate them. Helping you around will keep them engaged and teach them the responsibility aspect too. It’s a great way to bond and spend time together while still getting work done!😉
  3. Eye contact: This will tell your little one that you are talking to them. They will gradually learn the importance of looking at people while talking to them. It will help them to build their self confidence even though they will not realize it yet. Try bending on your knees and lowering your body to be at their level for communicating.This respectfully helps focus the child’s attention and they are ready to listen and learn. 💙
  4. Self care – You need energy and positivity to function as a mom! Sleeping well, eating healthy and taking mini breaks is essential to be a ‘present mom’. Check out my previous blog where on ‘self care’ you will get some really cool ideas on how to indulge into some self pampering ! 👇🏼https://frommummytonayel.wordpress.com/2017/07/19/5-things-i-do-to-practice-self-care-as-a-mum/
  5. Building Routines right from the start- this one for yourself and your little one. Even if you’re a homemaker, get into a routine to use your time well and be really positively present for ur little one. This will also save your time!
  6. One activity a day!: I have recently started doing this with Nayel. I love self play. But once for around 20-30 min I really play and do an activity with him. With tight schedules a short one will be good. But doing it consistently is the key. Choose anything that interest you and your little one. I’m enjoying some DIY and up cycling using things I have at home! Check my instagram for ideas @frommummytonayel !
  7. Finding happiness – saying Allhamdullilah ❤️ When we change our perspective and expectations, happiness will come. Create a gratitude journal ( @ayeinaofficial has one amazing! I still need to get mine😍). Take a deep breath and say a prayer thanking God for “right now.” Redefine yourself- connect with your hobbies. Nurture your passions and interests. Remember the ‘You’ that you’ve forgotten . 🙂 It is also very important to forgive yourself. Don’t let your mind wander to the past and all the ways you’ve messed up as a parent. 😉 

You are a loving mother, but you are not everything to everyone at every minute. And that’s okay.

What would you add to this list? I would love to read some more inspirational ways! Good luck mommies!

•Happy being ‘Present‘•