My Year in Review

As the year comes to a close I’d like to take a look at some of my accomplishments and letdowns.

I wrote, illustrated and published two children’s books. These books are based on my son Nadir’s adventures and are for children aged 3 to 6 years. I did a few book readings including one at my son’s school where I read my books to more than 100 children. I was also hoping to do a reading in a children’s hospital but was not able to mostly because of lack of effort on my own part. I hope to rectify this next year.

followsI started my blog at the end of July and 200+ posts later I’m quite happy with my progress. Some posts I am very proud of even if they did not get the response I had hoped, some not so much. The key to writing I am told is consistency and that definitely was there. I was nominated for several awards but am still longing for being “Freshly Pressed”.

My son turned 4 this year and by the Grace of God he has grown into quite a personality! His confidence, wit and humor never cease to amaze me. He has been my inspiration in my writing and creativity. On the other hand, as a mother what worries me are his picky eating habits and although he has made some progress this year, there is still a lot of work to be done.

My husband and I celebrated our 10th wedding anniversary this year. Time sure has flown by and I am looking forward to more good times.

This entire year my husband has been working in another country and commuting on weekends. This was tough but manageable. However where we didn’t notice any negative affects on my son for most of the year, I think the absence of his Dad is finally taking its toll. We are hoping that by early next year my husband will find another position/ job and we can settle down together.

In terms of travel I made two international trips to Turkey and Oman and two national trips to Fujairah and Ras al-Khaimah, emirates in the UAE. All of these were short trips for leisure and each one was special.

Overall it was a good year for me and my family and I hope the momentum will continue next year with more good things to come.

And to all my readers, best wishes for a great New Year!

Blogging away from home

We’re in a restaurant in the middle of lunch when my son turns to me and says “Mama I want a fairy godmother and a stepmother!”

We all have a good laugh and I tell him that I’ll look into it. I know he’s been reading too many fairy tales. They always have either a stepmother or a fairy godmother.

I then note this down on my phone. I don’t want to forget what he said and I can write about it later in one of my posts. I don’t have my laptop with me so I obviously can’t update my blog. It can probably be done on the phone but I don’t think my phone will support it. Besides I like typing on my laptop sitting in my study.

In the two and a half months I have been blogging, the only time I have posted away from home was from Oman.

We were spending our Eid holiday in Salalah, Oman, a very nice place with beautiful weather. This was very unusual but very welcome as we were in the middle of the hot unbearable summer of the UAE.

My husband had taken his laptop with him so he could play his weird strategy games. Little did he know that I would be stealing his laptop at every given opportunity. We had free internet in the room thanks to my husband’s Hilton loyalty card so it was a real dream.

I had recently discovered the Daily Post’s Photo Challenges and when Friday came I had taken some shots of my son on the beach which aptly fit the topic and I just had to post them. At this time though I had not been introduced to the wonderful world of pingbacks and I was hardly getting any traffic on my site. Plus I only had one follower (yes really!)  so I didn’t have much of an audience.  But I was just happy to be participating in the Challenges.

My husband kept asking me if I was going to win something by participating. He’s not a blogger and he can’t understand the joy of someone appreciating your posts. Besides he just wanted to get his laptop back from me. This is also probably where he discovered that once I had started blogging he could no longer share the computer with me. I needed my own.

Sometime later the laptop crashed and had to be reformatted. My husband bought himself his own laptop and gave his old bruised laptop to me. Happy times for me!

Daily Prompt: Blogger in a Strange Land

  1. Syphoned | The Magic Black Book
  2. Armenoi, in Crete! | alienorajt
  3. strangest place. | hitting a brick wall
  4. My Happy Place | Strange to Others | sylphontheloose
  5. Travelling In Hell | Life Confusions
  6. Stranger in a Strange Land? No. | RPMAS
  7. An Odd Space | Godrick Gnomish
  8. The Jittery Goat Travel Log – Places I’ve Been; Zone, Ohio 9/25/13 | The Jittery Goat
  9. Sat in the corner on the floor by the window of the terminal. | thoughtsofrkh
  10. Trees Dancing for you – “बडा दशैंको शुभकामना !” | rfljenksy – Practicing Simplicity
  11. Daily Prompt: Blogger in a Strange Land
  12. There’s no place stranger than home. | The Ambitious Drifter
  13. A writer without a pen | Phelio a Random Post a Day
  14. Time to write | Short Stories & Poems
  15. Blogger in a Strange Land: The Elemental Tourist – Air | Khana’s Web
  16. Unfamiliar Beauty of the Fire | mët•aRVhëë•n✪ia
  17. S. Thomas Summers | Daily Prompt: Blogger in a Strange Land
  18. Daily Prompt: Blogger in a Strange Land | Awl and Scribe
  19. Blogger in a Strange Land – MORNING UPDATE: HOTEL HELL | SERENDIPITY
  20. Daily Prompt: Blogger in a Strange Land | Chronicles of an Anglo Swiss
  21. Of Recluses and Writing | tuckedintoacorner
  22. In a Strange Land | Burgess Taylor
  23. Daily Prompt: Blogger in a Strange Land « Mama Bear Musings
  24. I feel weird | Lost in Adeline’s
  25. Post-a-potty. | Crossroads
  26. A hospital | Life is great
  27. Duncan the Sushi Roll #17 | Neva Samaki
  28. Blogger in Country Town | Life as a country bumpkin…not a city girl
  29. Daily Prompt: Blogger in a Strange Land | ayimas
  30. Daily Prompt: Blogger in a Strange Land #photography | ThisCornerOfTheWoods
  31. A Strange Dream | Flowers and Breezes
  32. On the Floor… | Haiku By Ku
  33. Strange | Motherhood and Beyond
  34. Oh, the Places You’ll Blog In! | Rob’s Surf Report
  35. The Strangest Place for Inspiration | The River Mom
  36. Rustic Neon Palm Trees…(wp daily prompt…Strange) | Daily Observations
  37. The Magical Street | Barefoot on Rainy Days
  38. Another Strange Find | Kansa Muse on Micro Farming and More

All’s well that ends well

“We have to get back on time” said my husband to me for the third time.

We were on our way back from a trip to Oman in the Eid holidays. We could only stay for 4 nights since my husband had to fly to the UK for an important business trip the day after. He was very nervous about catching the connecting flight from Muscat to Dubai as we had merely an hour in between. We were also not sure if we would be checked through or not.

When we checked in for our flight, they checked us through. So that was one worry out of the way. But the flight was 15 minutes late.

“We have to catch the next flight” said my husband yet again. Now when my husband is worried, there really is something to be worried about. I tried to calm him down but he kept reminding me how important his business trip was.

When we arrived at Muscat there were long queues at the check in counter and we only had half an hour till the next flight. I explained to one of the staff that if we stood in queue we would miss the flight. She directed me to a shorter queue and also told me that our flight had been delayed by half an hour. We finally made it and reached home at night.

There was more drama awaiting us. When we arrived at home there was no water and the air-conditioning wasn’t working. Our house was like a furnace and we couldn’t even wash up. My husband was frantic. “How will I shower and get ready for my trip? I told you to come a day earlier” he said with sweat dripping down his face.

We called the maintenance people and they came straight away. They checked the air-conditioning. There was no problem; it was just taking longer to cool since it had not been used the last 5 days. They fixed the motor temporarily and we had water.

When I saw that my husband had stopped pacing up and down and was relaxing in front of his computer, that’s when I knew that everything was going to be alright.

Daily Prompt: Exhale

  1. The 5th Peking to Paris Motor Challenge 2013. 1939 – Packard Six 1700 | Village & Countryside Tourism
  2. First Experience of an American in a Russian Banya | Философские заметки Алексея Марковича
  3. Safety | The Magic Black Book
  4. ¿Come se dice “kickass” en español? | Butterfly Mind
  5. Social media stalker | Short Stories & Poems
  6. Nobody But You – Charles Bukowski | NU VORBI, SCRIE!
  7. The Haunt of Red October | Beth Byrnes
  8. Daily Prompt: Exhale 7.10 | Family, Photos, Food & Craft
  9. Alright Now – Exhale! | The Ambitious Drifter
  10. Daily Prompt: Exhale | Under the Monkey Tree
  11. Waiting to exhale? « RPMAS
  12. Breathe, Just Breathe | Dear Yolandi
  13. Faith | Eikons
  14. we make our way | y
  15. EXHALE | Life Confusions
  16. Battlefield of Hope? | alienorajt
  17. 192. Waiting to Exhale | Barely Right of Center
  18. At the feet of the Mystic Mountain – Kailash (Part 2) | Life is a Vacation
  19. Job Interview | I’m just Super Saiyan
  20. ⊱◦ exђale ◦⊰ | The RunningFather Blog
  21. Exhale, but remember to breathe in first! | Hope* the happy hugger
  22. How To Save a Life | Just Visiting This Planet
  23. Something I don’t want to talk about | walkin’ on sunshine
  24. Sometimes An Enemy Is Better Than A Friend | The Jittery Goat
  25. My five day rental period. | thoughtsofrkh
  26. Daily Prompt: Exhale | The Temenos Journal
  27. Randomness Expressed
  28. Daily Prompt: Exhale « Mama Bear Musings
  29. Purchasing a cabin in The Great Smoky Mountains | Nothin’ But Views
  30. MISSED FLIGHT CONNECTION! | Angela McCauley
  31. Safety First… Cricket not always a gentleman’s game! | The Rider
  32. Making Lemonade when Life Throws Lemons | Kansa Muse on Micro Farming and More
  33. Daily Prompt: Exhale – Story/Poem – Rainy Day | I Hope You’re Taking Notes
  34. Daily Prompt: Exhale | Awl and Scribe
  35. Daily Prompt: Exhale | The Story of a Guy
  36. Daily Prompt: Exhale | Chronicles of an Anglo Swiss
  37. Daily Prompt: STILL WAITING TO EXHALE | SERENDIPITY
  38. “Exhale.. Safety” | Relax
  39. Daily Prompt: All Right | A Good One
  40. Daily Prompt (Oct 07, 2013): Exhale | Jottings and Writings
  41. Daily Prompt: Exhale | Not The Sword But The Pen
  42. The day the world stood still | dawnyhosking
  43. The Gremmie’s Lament | Rob’s Surf Report
  44. My foot slipped, I cried out…….. | crookedeyebrows
  45. Daily Prompt: Exhale | lifebeinggirly
  46. Butterfly Journal 2nd Month: Truth (Entry #1) | Through the Peacock’s Eyes
  47. The Daily Prompt: Exhale | A Second Opinion
  48. lost | Mind of a Mouse
  49. Say ph | Sue’s Trifles
  50. Safe With Mama… | Haiku By Ku
  51. Daily Prompt: Inhale and Exhale | My Atheist Blog
  52. Life is an ocean | MC’s Whispers
  53. I’m Here, I Got You | JC Bride ~
  54. A Sigh Of Relief | Flowers and Breezes
  55. Marks Obsession: How far can it take you? | Expressions
  56. New Mama Drama, Daily Prompt: Exhale | Reinvention of Mama
  57. PROJECT R : I think best when I think with others | vicbriggs’s Blog
  58. daily prompt: in thru the nose, out thru the mouth | r | one studio architecture
  59. Daily Prompt: Exhale | Life as a country bumpkin…not a city girl
  60. Exhale | Kate Murray
  61. Being ordinary | Inside of love
  62. Daily prompt: Exhale | Exploring Utah with MS and Apples
  63. Into the Labyrinth | Broken Light: A Photography Collective
  64. His fist and my nose | Life is great
  65. Follow The Godwinks | Here’s My Heart & Here’s My Mouth
  66. Anxiety, life’s surprises, and remembering to exhale | The Road Less Paved
  67. One Kind Word | amarllyis
  68. “On Belay” | It’s a wonderful F’N life
  69. Daily Prompt: Exhale | Ruminations from an Introvert
  70. Exhale – solve your problems | Geek Ergo Sum
  71. Daily Promt: Exhale | Steve Says….
  72. Daily Prompt: Exhale | life n me!
  73. I Choose You | momasteblog
  74. Safe and Secure | CurTales
  75. Can You Ever Really Fully Exhale as a Parent? | gorgeous little thieves
  76. Daily Prompt: Exhale | Daily Observations
  77. Exhale | The Nameless One