How to make Chicken Tikka Kababs

posted in: Creativity and DIYs, Recipes | 0

Chicken Tikkah Kababs

I always find it fun to try various recipes during the holidays. People are finding themselves in a broad range of events such as holiday parties, potlucks, or regular get-togethers with friends. A couple of weeks ago Shehab and I went to a potluck at a friends house. Everyone cooked their specialty dish, and I prepared my version of Chicken Tikka Kababs. Since it was a massive hit,  I thought I’d share my version of how to make Chicken Tikka Kababs.

This won’t taste exactly like the restaurant version, especially since they’re made in woodfire grills, but it is a party favorite.I also minimize the amount of oil used.

Ingredients:

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2 pounds of diced chicken breast
1 tbsp of lemon and lime juice
1 cup Greek Yogurt
2 tbsp Olive Oil
3 tbsp Chicken Tikka Masala (this ingredient can be purchased in the ethnic foods section of any grocery store or an Indian grocery store).
One tbsp Coriander Powder
1 tbsp Garlic Powder
1 tbsp Ginger Powder
One tsp Oregano
One tsp Rosemary flakes
1 tbsp Cayenne Pepper
Two tsp Salt and Pepper
One tsp Chili Flakes
1 tbsp Coriander flakes

  1. Mix all the dry ingredients together before marinating your chicken then pour it into the lemon and line juice. ( I love using both lemon and lime because each ingredient has its unique flavor.
  2. Mix the lemon & lime with the dry spices. <– make sure you mix this very well before adding the rest of the ingredients.
  3. Add Olive Oil and mix.IMG_1382
  4. Add the Greek Yogurt and mixIMG_1385
  5. Once you feel that the mixture is ready to add the chicken and mix until every piece of meat is covered with sauce. IMG_1387IMG_1388
  6. Take an airtight container and store it in the fridge. <- I like to allow the chicken to marinate for 24 hours before cooking it but you can cook it right away as well.IMG_1389

 

Cooking:

  1. Preheat the Oven to 450 degrees.
  2. Wrap the chicken with two pieces of foil paper and seal it tightly.IMG_1395
  3. Bake the chicken for thirty minutes covered. (Flip the pieces over during the fifteen-minute interval).
  4. After thirty minutes, uncover the chicken and bake it for another ten minutes.

Forewarning: the kababs get eaten quite fast. Depending on your oven, you may have to cook it for a longer amount of time or less. Always make sure that your chicken is cooked thoroughly. This recipe was made in the winter time, but I would recommend grilling instead of baking. It makes for a great barbecue.

You can pair them with a salad with lemon juice onto,  some naan bread, or rice.

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  • You can also use these same ingredients to make a vegetarian version. Replace the chicken with firm Tofu. Since tofu cooks quite fast, you can bake the tofu for twenty minutes at 450 degrees covered. Uncover and bake for ten minutes.

 

 

 

Hello My Name Is…

posted in: Journey of Love, Marriage | 0

About a week ago Shehab and I went to our first office Christmas party.I made the mistake of misreading the venue, and I took Shehab on a little tour of the cities. Sometimes I’m glad he doesn’t get very angry fast; it helps because he just laughed it off. We finally ended up finding the right venue and there we were at my first office party.

The venue was beautiful; I honestly love Christmas time. The green, the lights, the happy glow all around, it’s a wonderful feeling. But how do you introduce yourself when you’re still so new and half your co-workers couldn’t make it to the event?

Umm, let’s start with Hi I’m Ishika, and I’m… well, let’s just say the Christmas party was a success! After multiple introductions and answering the whole, “what do you do?” questionnaire… Social Media Marketing Assistant,  my husband realized how awesome his wife is. Ok, maybe I’m gloating a little too much.

What I mean to say is, sometimes you never realize what an impact you might make on a team or company. This was Shehab’s second event with my office. Our first was a Client Appreciation event was at a Brewery. Introducing him to my coworkers was fun. Shehab has this amazing, friendly personality and is available to talk to anyone. I’m a little introverted at first. The best part though was hearing one of my co-workers praise my work and let’s just say a couple of words of appreciation from the boss was a bonus.

However, when your boss’s boss comes and praises you at his Christmas party to your husband, well it turns into an outer body experience. Let me rephrase this… I’m used to being at the bottom when it comes to past work experiences: the hostess, cashier, teller, beauty advisor, and shoe sales associate. Not knocking down my past, but it’s always been a controlled atmosphere. This Social Media Marketing Assistant position, well I have complete control of my ideas, projects, and how I want to implement them, with the approval of my bosses as well. But I’m in control of my position.

It feels strange to hear your boss’s boss and his assistant talk about your strengths and how you’ve helped the company grow. It’s amazing to hear them talk about the benefits of your talents. Even though you pretend to be humble, I couldn’t help but give Shehab the “yea, I’m pretty awesome,” look followed by his little smirk.  

Let’s be honest, Shehab already knew that, though. However, hearing my superiors phrase me made a large impact on my life. I constantly call Shehab every day to talk about the new projects I’m working on, changes I’ve made, or the new programs I’ve been testing. He’s supportive and loves hearing about my endeavors. Hearing my bosses praise me and compliment me, well it made my hubby realize that I’m a valued member of this team. The whole, “my wife, accomplished this” is just an awesome bonus.

It’s important to acknowledge your strengths and talents, it’s also important to know that your partner understands your value and capabilities. Often we worry about boasting or making our partner look inferior. I think in a true, lovable, and strong marriage inferiority shouldn’t exist. It’s all about praising each other’s success and helping them bounce back from their failures.

Confessions of a Television Addict

posted in: Media Library, Television Shows | 0

 

Television

Confession Time: I’m secretly a television addict. I have an absolute television obsession, I literally think I need rehab. Shehab is finishing up his MBA and I’m about ready to catch him up on a couple of my favorite shows before the next season begins. Only catch, I have way too many I’m obsessed with.

So here are the shows I’m currently obsessed with and trying to get Shehab to watch:

  1. How To Get Away With Murder
  2. Scandal
  3. Once Upon A Time
  4. Modern Family
  5. The Originals
  6. Law and Order Special Victims Unit

Here are the shows that I’m always going to be obsessed with:

  1. Boy Meets World
  2. Scrubs
  3. Revenge 
  4. Desperate Housewives
  5. Friends
  6. How I Met Your Mother
  7. One Tree Hill
  8. Gilmore Girls
  9. 7th Heaven
  10. Full House
  11. The Addams Family
  12. The Munsters

So I really want to introduce him to the Musters so we can dress up Herman and Lily Munster for Halloween. I think I’ll start with Boy Meets World!

What’s your favorite show?

Photo credit- Pawel Kadysz

Career versus Marriage

posted in: Journey of Love, Marriage | 0

CareervsMarriage

 

When Shehab and I realized we loved each other, we were both quite ambitious, and we discussed our career goals. I started my career as a Social Media Marketing Manager straight out of college for a small Real Estate and Website design company making absolute minimum wage part time. The commute wasn’t the best, and it was a struggle for an entire year. However, the encouragement and coaching of my supervisor led me to achieve this job I absolutely love.

I don’t regret it, though; it helped me gain a vast range of experience that helped me lead me into the world of Financial Advising. A little side note, social media is still a bit new to the financial advising world. Crazy right!?!

Moving forward, I’ve been at my current position for three months now, and I love it! Like I said Social Media is still completely new to financial advising, and I get to pave the way. For a creative person like me, well it’s an absolute blessing! I get to experiment, bring new ideas, do multiple trial and errors and my bosses are awesome! Let’s just say, right now I’m probably creating a dream job for myself.

And Shehab, he loves hearing about my goals, the new projects I’m creating, and my ambitious thoughts. It’s what we do; we support each other. Now that Shehab is finishing up his MBA it’s my turn to encourage and path the way for him.

Now it’s time to talk options…

Like I said Shehab and I discussed our options when we were dating. I don’t want to open Pandora’s box about careers, marriage, and raising children, but I had told Shehab that I wanted to have a child when Allah was ready for us and preferably when we were financially stable. It’s important. My mom began working after my brother started Kindergarten, and after Dora started going to Kindergarten. It was purely for herself since my dad is fortunate. Now this is purely how my family structure works.

Once I took on this marketing assistant position and realized that I was one of the pioneers of social media and marketing, well it does feel like a great responsibility. It’s exciting, frustrating, scary, and enjoyable at the same time. And having a boss with a great imagination and huge vision, well who doesn’t love achievable dreams right!?!

I want to create a legacy with my career so I can one day show my baby sister and my future children the projects that I accomplished. When you have a boss with a vision, who wouldn’t love that right.

Now when it comes to marriage, Shehab and I agreed on equal duties, structures, and respect. It’s how we envisioned our future. So can we manage careers and marriage. Well, as you know we’re not currently living together but it’s a challenge we’re willing to take on.

What do we anticipate….

1.Being supportive of each other and hoping we fulfill our career goals.

2.Splitting up the responsibilities of the household tasks so we don’t get overwhelmed.

3.Making sure we always make time for each other to keep our relationship growing.

4.When the time comes, we’ll manage around having a child. My mom always says that “children are gifts from Allah, you can’t plan for these things.” But we like to think we would be financially ready.

5.Take one day at a time, knowing that we love each other and are willing to support each other is all that matters.

I mean people have managed to have successful careers and strong marriages right? So why can’t we?

 

Five ways to keep your skin healthy this winter

posted in: Health and Beauty, Skincare | 0

FiveWaystoKeepYourSkinHealthyThisWinter

Although I’ve experimented with many various tactics, I want to make sure that everyone understands that I have dry skin and borderline eczema. The skin regimens that work for dry skin may not help suite everyone. Always consult a Doctor if you’re unsure since I am not a skin specialist. However, I wanted to share the techniques that have benefited me.

That magical time of year is here; everyone’s getting ready for the holidays, the trees are being covered by crystal ice, driving conditions are horrible, but everyone always seems to be cheery. So who cares about the driving right?

Well, this post isn’t about the weather conditions, it’s more about how to save your skin this winter. I suffer from borderline Eczema, and my skin is always at the worst in the winter. I’m talking completely dry, cracked, and often bleeding. It’s not fun. However, over the years I’ve managed to change my routine, here’s what’s worked for me.

  1. Hydration: I used to drink three Mountain Dews a day until I began my weight loss goal. My trainer expressed the benefits of keeping myself hydrated, but I also noticed the drastic changes it made to my skin. My skin started to feel softer and brighter.
  2. Cleaning: Wash your face every morning after waking up and before going to bed. I would also recommend washing your face the minute you get home from an outing. When you’re out in the winter, remember that the air is full of a ton of particles, especially the chemicals used to de-ice the roads. My doctor recommended Cetaphil; it’s soft and doesn’t dry out your skin. However, I am currently using Neutrogena Morning  Burst and Mario Badescu’s Keratoplast Cream Soap at night. I do appreciate how the Keratoplast Cream Soap works on my skin, but the morning burst does dry out my skin. I am just used to it’s waking up effects, or maybe it’s psychological.
  3. Moisturize: I can’t even express the importance of keeping your skin moisturized in the winter. I find myself constantly moisturizing my hands all winter, they always get the worst of the winter. I started keeping a bottle of Utterly smooth in my purse, and it does help. When it comes to moisturizing my skin, I’ve used so many various products I’ve lost count. My doctor recommended Eucerin, and it has done wonders of my Excema. My recommendation is talking to a physician about your skincare concerns and research on what’s best for your skin type. I’ve often fallen victim to spending too much on recommended products from salons. I was advised to use Mario Badescu’s Complex Moisturizer with Vitamin “E.” When I began to use it in May, it did wonders for my Excema but it hasn’t been much of a success this winter.
  4. Sunscreen: Even though the air is arid we still get the effect of UV Rays from the sunlight. I use sunscreen year round to protect my skin from UV Rays.  I have had the best luck with Neutrogena Dry Touch Sunscreen. It’s very gentle and doesn’t feel too oily or thick.      
  5.  Multivitamin: Two years ago I began to suffer from fatigue and exhaustion, my Doctor conducted a blood test and found that my Vitamin D was extremely low. His recommendation was taking a Vitamin D Supplement. I later learned that many individuals suffer from Vitamin D deficiencies. To prevent your chances of a vitamin deficiency,  keep your skin healthy by taking a multi-vitamin. Additional vitamins such as D, Biotin, Vitamin C and-and E are vital for your skin and immunity. Always consult a Doctor though about other vitamins that you should be taking.

Starting today, I’m going to start experimenting with natural products. Like I said, I’ve used many salon products, but I want to start working with natural remedies for my skin.

Winter Inspiration

posted in: Creativity and DIYs, Inspiration | 0

WinterInspiration

Winter’s here, the first frost as fallen and I’m ready to stay inside by a warm fireplace snuggled up to Shehab and the little munchkin. Too bad Shehab and I only see each other on the weekends and reality says,  “I have to work, and Dora has to go to school!Yea life sucks! Especially when Dora says she’s too old to snuggle, however, she does have her moments.

For some strange reason, though, I always find my inspiration in the winter. I don’t know if it’s because of the cold weather or the depressing atmosphere, but I always find my inspiration for painting during the winter season.

My ideas often come during the worst times, like when I’m in the office trying to concentrate on projects and all I can think about is painting. I’m an I have to start this project, or I’ll forget kind of girl. So how do you fix these problems?

I decided to start carrying around a small notebook for my ideas and inspiration. Since I’m a daughter of an artist, there’s paint and canvases everywhere!

So what’s on the inspiration lists…

Well, a family friend, who’s like an elder sister to me is pregnant, she has two daughters and after eight years she’s having a baby boy due in January. Here’s the thing, they love to read, so I’m currently working on a little story book. Details to follow. I’m not much of a children’s books author, but let’s see how it turns out.

I’m trying to improve my artistic photography; I’m not much of a photography person. However, I couldn’t help but take a picture of the melting snow in front of my house; I guess winter does inspire.

And on the painting list, I have this idea of representing imperfection in the midst of beauty and chaos. I have the idea in my mind, but until it’s on a canvas, can’t explain the final product.

In the meantime I think I’ll just practice my sketching and improve skills again (I’m finding my sketching skills are a little out of practice)

Sketch

Geometric shapes

What to expect

 

A little too much honesty

posted in: Journey of Love, Marriage | 0

Honesty

On our second date, Shehab and I promised each other that we would always be completely honest. Even if it were something we didn’t want to hear, we would still tell each other everything.

Believe me, it drives our parents insane! Since we end up telling each other a little too much, especially when it comes to family secrets. Don’t worry we’re not hiding skeletons in our closet, but who doesn’t appreciate a little privacy right?

We’re a little too honest to the point where we have to face the consequences as well some of these included messages from past relationships and the occasional photo found in Shehab’s inbox. *the mental image still burns. Kidding aside.

We have always been honest with each other, and that’s one of the things I love about our relationship.

Sometimes too much honesty has lead to some of our entire worst fights but we’ve somehow overcome them by talking to each other. We both have different ways of handling confrontation, though.

When it comes to me, I’m a screamer, I get very stubborn and let’s just says sometimes anger leads to insensitive comments. I like to follow up with giving myself some space and thinking about what happened. Shehab, on the other hand, gets a little angry then cools himself off. Once we’re both pretty calm, we like to sit down and explain what happened and figure out ways to fix the issue at hand.

But when it comes to honesty, there is a gray area.

You can’t be too honest about each other’s families.

Like I said, Shehab and I are both very family oriented individuals and we’re quite protective of our families. It’s a good quality. However, it’s also a weakness…

It’s funny the ladies in the Bengali community always said, “never say anything to your spouse about their family,” but let’s be honest you can’t help but observe and comment on individual habits and norms. WRONG!!!

A couple months into my marriage I realized that every family was different. You’re combining two individuals who were raised very differently together to create a new family. But you also have to understand that many families established their ways and sometimes commenting from the outside can make things worse.

It goes both ways, though…Shehab handles criticism a lot better than I do. I think I’ve caused some of the worst fights we’ve had because I’ve gotten defensive over the minimal observations. Sometimes it’s even lead me demanding that he leave. Yep, the completely wrong way to approach a situation right?

It wasn’t until recently that we realized that we’re coming from the outside observing our families from another lens. We don’t know the entire story. Parents have created their traditions and norms over years of practice. Let’s be honest, once rules are established it’s pretty difficult to change. Many people would rather change others than themselves which is another obstacle Shehab, and I face on a daily basis.

So how do you handle the honesty train when it comes to families? Not saying anything doesn’t help, even though I knew about it.

  1. Think of ways to calmly approach the situation without causing your partner to get defensive.
  2. Try to understand why things are the way they are and explain what bothers you about it to your partner.
  3. Talk to your partner about ways to improve the situation – Shehab’s no. 1 rule, “explain it to me and let me handle the situation.” (Don’t expect sudden changes though)
  4. And when it comes to your marriage… talk about what traditions and norms you want to execute in your future foundation. *Remember every generation takes what they learned from their elders and evolves it to build their own.

When it comes to Shehab and me, our biggest strength is honesty, however, our weakness; listening without getting defensive. Especially when it comes to me… Remember ignoring the topic isn’t going to help your relationship grow….It’s about finding ways to discuss and understand each other.

How do you handle excessive honesty with your partner?

My 2016 Business Goals

posted in: Business, Business & Blogging | 0

It’s National Write a Business Plan Month, as a Social Media and Marketing Assistant you need to keep up-to-date on these things, especially when you’re working for a financial advising company. It does help with the blogging side of things if you’re trying to stay on track. So what’s my business plan for my blog and myself?

My plan is to post new content at least three to four times a week. One of the mistakes I made in the past was not maintaining my content. At the same time, I need to make sure it’s interesting to my readers. How?

  1. Like I said I’ve made a lot of large changes in my life, especially my marriage to Shehab. Writing calms me down but it also made me realize that they are many people out there battling and enjoying the same obstacles as me. So why not write, you never know who’s going to benefit from it.
  2. The make-up artist for my wedding reception sent me a list of skin care products to help take care of my skin. She did do a lot of research and recommended what she thought was best for me. Although I love getting advice, I have become more interested in finding products and techniques that will benefit me. Hence, I’m going to try some traditional remedies and experiment with more natural products.
  3. I still suffer from low self-confidence, and I’m battling with it. After all the conflict and criticism regarding my hyper-pigmentation, I felt extremely broken down, the fact that someone could look down on me due to a simple mark on my face. I still don’t understand why this individual was so concerned by it, but it made me stronger. So I’m going to work towards making myself stronger and more confident.
  4. I’ve also been experimenting with online shopping; it’s quite fun to browse through small boutiques. My goal, once I get to my healthy weight loss goal! Well, a major shopping spree and possibly sharing some cute outfits. However, I’m not much of a fashion expert.

Outside of the Blog…

  1. I was given the chance to try essential oils though Simply Aroma, and if I like what I see I get to become a Simply Aroma consultant. Quite excited about that, more details to follow once I learn more about the product.
  2. I started Little Miss Dora’s Boutique, a kids crafting, party favor, and gifts boutique shop. I do receive on and off clients every couple of years, but I wanted to start taking this more seriously. I love crafting, and Dora loved modeling some of the hair accessories I made for her, so the plan, craft at least four times a week and get that creativity back.
  3. Maimuna Designs was another crafting business I started, it originally began with designing and painting wine glasses. Since then I have started moving forward to selling my paintings when it comes to painting it’s all about the ideas that come to mind. You can’t force it.

So my main business plan? As of now major concentration!

I was made aware of National Write a Business Plan month via BrownieLocks.com

The Heartbeat

posted in: Family, Journey of Love | 0

This posts was origionally posted in LittleMissDorasWorld.com

Dora was eight weeks old, in my mom’s womb, it sounds silly saying in her womb when she taught me my first lesson. Life is precious, and even the tiniest little person can have a the strongest heartbeat with a lot to say.

Before my mom became pregnant with Dora, my life lacked ambition and smart choices. I was in my second year of college, but I had no idea what I was doing with my life. I got myself in a tangle of obstacles that I’m too embarrassed to talk about. Don’t worry it’s not drugs or alcohol, I had gotten myself into a long distance relationship with a not so good person, and it’s not worth talking about.

I was on track for pre-med, my whole life I thought that I wanted to be a doctor until I began volunteering at a hospital and realized that I couldn’t handle it emotionally. I was too afraid to tell my family that I didn’t want to be a doctor since everyone had such high hopes for me. Instead of discussing my options I stayed quiet for two years and kept on forcing myself into a web of lies. I kept making one bad decision after another, not caring about my classes or my life. I held onto a sick fantasy of living a life with someone who I didn’t even know. My life choices lead to constant conflict with my family members, the siblings who had looked at me so highly now patronized me, I was at my all time low.

It wasn’t until I went to that first ultrasound with my mom, I heard Dora’s heartbeat for the first time; thirty-six beats per minute! The doctor told me she was strong; she was just a tiny little peanut, but she had a lot to say.

Dora 001

Her heart beat said it all, “Life is precious, I’m just a tiny little thing, but I’m going to be strong one day, and I’m going to need you!”

She was growing strongly in my mother’s womb, this new life, my second chance!

A couple months into my mom’s pregnancy the doctors discovered that she had a kink in her kidney, their first suggestion was to abort the baby! I don’t want to open Pandora’s box on my stance on abortion, but when I heard that Heartbeat! I just couldn’t do it. That little peanut was waiting for me!

I begged my mom to keep the baby; I think my mom knew that I needed Dora more than she needed me. She promised to keep the baby alive for me. My mom has saved my life many times and never given up on me, but Dora was the greatest gift she could have ever given me.

For the remainder of the pregnancy, my mom had six surgeries on her kidney, each time the doctors took extra precautions to keep Dora safe. They inserted stents into her kidney multiple times but as Dora grow she kicked at the stent causing massive bleeding. My mom’s final treatment was using a Nephrostome bag. (This was a pipe that inserted through her backside into her kidney. Since one kidney was not functioning, her urine would filter out into the bag. I was at UW-River Falls and could only come home on the weekends. That’s when my mom was able to shower. We had to put a shower guard on the tube so it wouldn’t get contaminated. The one time I couldn’t be there, my dad placed the guard, and my mom ended up in the hospital. That’s how much my mom suffered for me to keep this baby alive. (She never gave up, and either did Dora!).

When I came home every weekend, it was a burden for my dad. I didn’t know how to drive, I would manage to get rides from friends, but I needed someone to bring me home. He wasn’t too happy about it, but I needed to be there for my mother and that tiny baby growing inside her.

As Dora grew inside my mom, she always gave me secret hints that she was going to be ok. My mom recalls times when she could feel Dora moving inside her, the minute I would talk, Dora would stay still until I was done talking. If I left the room, she’d kick my mom’s stomach until I returned. There were times when I would speak to my mom’s womb, and I’d see a tiny little knee or foot imprint pushing through my mom.

It was her, “I’m here Ishika, don’t worry, I’ll be out soon!”

The anticipation of meeting Dora was what kept me going. I stayed in the hospital with my mom every chance I could. The nurses had to monitor Dora’s heartbeat while my mom was in the hospital, and while I slept I could hear, Don’t worry Ishika, you’ll get to meet me soon!”’

Before Dora was born, I told my family that pre-med wasn’t for me. It was a little heartbreaking for everyone, but my mom stayed supportive all the way, but my confidence was still low. I didn’t think I was good enough to be there for Dora, and I tried to give up on life, I attempted to end my schooling and escape to another country. I feel so stupid saying that now.

My mom never gave up on me; she told me I didn’t have to return to River Falls, but I needed to get my act together and get myself into a local University. Let’s just say I didn’t even take that seriously until I got the news on February 22, 2015.

Even though my mom’s nephrostomy bag was freezing and her kidney was failing, my mother gave birth to a healthy little girl named Audhora Maimuna Huq, the name I got to choose.

And on February 23, 2015, there she was that little munchkin. When the nurses brought her to the room, she was asleep. She looked like a tiny porcelain doll sleeping in her toy crib. I didn’t want to wake her up, so I didn’t hold her right away, but when I put my hand on that little munchkin’s blanket, she knew I was here.

She opened her eyes right away and looked at me; I knew what she wanted to say, See Ishika, I’m here, I told you I’m coming for you now that I’m here show me how to live my life!”

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The single greatest moment of my life was when I met my baby sister. She didn’t see my mistakes; she didn’t see my bad decisions, all she saw was her big sister waiting for her to save me.

Since the day I met Dora, I started to take school more seriously. I managed to get into North Hennepin Community College where I discovered my interest in Communication Studies. From North Hennepin, I transferred to Saint Catherine University and received my Bachelors of Science in Communication Studies.

My relationship with my family has grown significantly, and I’m the elder sister my siblings love. I also got my driver’s license on Dora’s first Valentine’s day. My dad was so happy he purchased my first car on Dora’s first birthday. My mom still has kidney complications and her health has weakened significantly, but she’s tries to stay healthy for all of us, especially for our little munchkin.

I live every single day for Dora, to show her I can do it! That little munchkin never gave up on me even inside my mother. She stayed strong through the surgeries and the pain because she knew that I needed her.

I hope Dora understands how much she changed my life one day, I tell her every single day, but come on! She’s only five, what do you expect? She knows that she’s special to me, and I guess that’s all that matters.

Even the tiniest little person can have the strongest heartbeat with a lot to say. Thank you, Dora, for saving my life and guiding me all the way.

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Seeing your soul in the people I love

posted in: Family, Journey of Love | 0

Eight years ago today I lost my Nanna, (maternal grandfather). I still remember the scenario like it was yesterday. I was in my senior year of high school about to attend my physics class when my younger sister Rayka ran to my locker. Ishika did you hear? Nanna died?

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The last photograph with my Nanna August 2007.

I’m going to sound horrible, but I didn’t cry. I was in complete shock, my body became numb, it felt like I was day dreaming. We knew that Nanna was suffering for years, he had Parkinson’s diseases. We just didn’t realize it he would leave us so fast.

It wasn’t until I saw his body the following day in Illinois when I realized my Nanna’s soul had left this Earth. And even then I couldn’t cry.

Looking back, I realized why I didn’t cry. I was always with him. There was never a time when I didn’t spend time with him, and it was time for him to rest in peace.

I had an incident on New Years Eve when it was just my Nanna and me. He had broken his hip, so he was bed ridden. The Parkison’s disease also got the best of his mind, and it was slowly deteriorating. He always remembered who I was, though, I was his eldest grandchild, and I like to believe that I was also his favorite.
I was getting his dinner ready for him; Chicken, rice, some veggies, lentils, and water. I brought the tray up to his room. My mom told me not to leave his side when he ate, but I needed to go to the bathroom. It was literally five minutes, ok probably a couple minutes more.

I came back, and the plate was complete upside down! The tray covered with water, and there was a drumstick in the water glass! I know right! And my Nanna, well he was just sitting there smiling like a cheeky little five-year-old, the kind of look I see in Dora’s face. And when I say five-year-old, well I asked him how it happened, and his response, “I don’t know.”

Don’t worry I cleaned everything up, but till this day I always remember his cheeky little smile.

It wasn’t until today when I couldn’t control my tears anymore. My mom wrote a piece about how she missed him and how she wished that he was here meet Dora, to see me as a bride and to meet Shehab for the first time.

I see a lot of my Nanna in Shehab.
I see his soft heart.
His need to make me smile.
How no matter how stubborn I get, he’s always there to handle it. However, nothing beats my Nanna.

I can still recall a memory from my childhood; I’m not sure why but I became quite angry with my Nanna. I took all the lotion and perfume bottles on the dresser, and I threw them on the ground. My Nanna just stood there watching me. Afterward picked up each item and just hugged me.

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This photo was taken in Bangladesh January 1992 

Don’t worry Shehab has never experienced one of my childhood tantrums, he has experienced some mean yelling sprees, though.

My Nanna never gave up one me; he always made me like I was the most beautiful, confident and strongest woman in the world.

Sometimes the people you miss with all your heart shine through the people you love the most.  I see my Nanna’s heart in my husband’s soul and his cheeky little smile in my baby sister’s smile.

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