Friday, 29 July 2016

A reminder to myself

Welcome back lovely readers,

Last week I took a bit of a reprieve from blogging as I had a really intensive work week. After a week of crazy busy, I arrived home and my body literally crashed. I was unable to get out of bed, read or watch TV,  never mind blog. I developed a bad chest infection, along with flu and fever. The body is amazing thing, and quickly lets you know when you've exerted yourself. 

This week I'm still struggling with the symptoms but I'm feeling ready to take on the world again. It seems like all sorts of bugs are making the rounds, a reminder to myself, to keep the immune system as strong as possible. With all my roles I fulfil, I tend to focus so much on others, that sometimes I neglect myself. While being stuck in bed (which I find extremely frustrating) I was taking stock and trying to remember when last I took time out for myself. That little bit of time to recharge in the middle of the week, which must have happened so long ago I can't remember it. 

Around the same time last year, I had become very good at it, and regularly scheduled some time in the calendar for myself. I have realised that time flies by so quickly and unless things have been planned, it will not happen. With the kids, each year seems to get busier and busier, and by the middle of the year I only realise that things have gotten out of control (again). And only when my body says enough(!) 

So this post is my reminder to myself first, as well as all the mothers out there, sitting in waiting vehicles after school and music lessons. To all the moms nursing sick kids, helping with homework, doing sports runs and buying endless food supplies, plan a few hours where you would need to focus only on yourself. Plan what the 'me-time' activity will be and stick to it religiously. In order to be effective mothers, nurturers, teachers and role models, we need to look after ourselves first. 

These are the ways which I plan to spend my me-time:
  1. Catch up on books I've meant to read.
  2. Meet up with a friend for coffe.
  3. Schedule a pamper treatment.
  4. I'm not much of a TV person, but I've decided to join the Game of Thrones craze (I'm a such a sucker for medieval and fantasy shows).
  5. Grab some nature time - I love the outdoors so working in the garden, or even just sitting in the garden will work.
  6. Above all, be gentle with myself (ie ditch the guilt- an unnecessary but ever present emotion when one is a mum!).

So in an effort to ensure that my immune system recovers I've been pumping up on herbal meds, drinks and supplements. The weather has been so unpredictable and icy cold too, adding to the woes of Winter. But once I am back on my feet, I'll be sure to check my list and plan some me-time. How do you manage to ensure that essential me-time? I'd love to hear some ideas and stories!

Today's post features an outfit worn on one of our warmer Winter days, and features a denim shirt thrown over a maxi dress, finished off with sneakers. A light casual ensemble for the mum on the run.























Outfit details:
Michelle Ludek dress from Spree (old)
ZARA denim shirt (old)
Woolworths hat (old)
Stan Smith sneakers
Mulberry clutch bag (purchased abroad)
Giorgio Armani Sunglasses from Sunglass Hut
Various bracelets
Caio for now,
RuBe xoxo
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Friday, 15 July 2016

Finding my inner strength

Happy Friday lovelies!

This has been a difficult week for me, as I've indicated before, Ramadaan is the start of my planning for the year ahead. It seems the very first week after the fast (of my new year) has hit me like a ton of bricks. Things have instantly stepped up a notch, professionally, emotionally, personally and also in terms of my studies and personal growth. However, I am the type of person who will roll with whatever comes my way, face it head on and tackle it to the best of my ability. I have to admit though, that it can be difficult to always be ready to engage when it would be so much easier to pretend that it didn't happen, isn't there or to crawl under the covers.

Over the past two weeks, I have expressed gratitude and thankfulness for my family especially. And this week, it has hit home how much I rely on their support and strength, even if they don't realise it. While the love and support from loved ones is vital, what is more important is the ability to heal yourself. Even though I rely on their support, I need my family more as an encouragement when I'm in a dark place and not to actually get me out of that space. To be of service to myself, I need to be able to access my own inner strength, which I have become so adept at calling upon, to carry me through hard times. For many people it is easier to ignore issues, as it takes so much energy to have to deal with obstacles, but they are usually the best way to strengthen oneself. 

Obstacles are placed in our paths to strengthen us, sometimes for a lesson meant to be learnt and sometimes because things were not meant to be a certain way. For me, when faced with obstacles, I draw on inner strength, and find what I need inside me to be able to weather the storm. My peaceful place to access this strength is usually through prayer, a time when I am my most tranquil, with no outside noise interfering. Prayer will mean different things to different people, but essentially it is to be still with oneself, to communicate with Allah/ God/The Divine and access that connection that we all have to a power greater than ourselves. It is ultimately the responsible of each individual to live life to their best potential, to use the gifts granted to them and to be conscious of doing good. I am always learning, so have not found the magic 'formula' for doing this, but I shall continue to try and deal with whatever hurdles I encounter. Always with the support of my army at my side.

This week's quote: 

"Above all,
be the heroine of your life,
not the victim."
- Nora Ephron

This weeks OOTD is my Eid outfit, which included a sequin mermaid skirt from Fabulous in Hijab paired with a plain ZARA boxy top and royal blue Ted Baker heels, both scored on sale.  We had such a special Eid day, relaxed, even though I had a bigger cooking responsibility. This outfit was perfect for all day as it was comfortable, warm and stylish.







Surrounded by my loving army











My outfit: 
Fabulous in Hijab sequin skirt
ZARA boxy top
Ted Baker suede heels
Superbalist neckpiece (now on sale- shop here)
Raw Silk scarf old, accessorized with a woven headband
Accessorize pony hair Clutch (old)
Country road earrings

Caio for now,
RuBe xoxo


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Friday, 8 July 2016

Ramadaan Insights

Welcome readers!

What a blessed week we've just had, celebrating Eid midweek makes for a special week. I think school holidays contributed to it being a really relaxed buildup, where my preparations weren't rushed and everything fell effortlessly into place.

This week, I am continuing the theme of gratitude, but with a different twist. The last week of Ramadaan brought huge insights accompanied by an immense sense of inner peace. These realisations focus on how to contribute to meaningful connections, starting with my family. With life being so busy, one easily coasts through everyday, not really present, resulting in missed connections. These meaningful connections may be brief interactions with the kids or hubby, or long conversations with no distractions. This happened often during the fast, where our interactions were more than superficial platitudes (which is what one would usually get from teenagers).

I came to the understanding that if I let my kids know that they are integral to my learning and development, and that they contribute to my personal progress; as much as we do to theirs, they will approach the parent-child relationship with a different perspective. They've become more tolerant, even when I was enforcing a restriction (such as no music during Ramadaan) and were being so thoughtful to each other as siblings. There were still incidences of the sibling fights, but I have seen a tangible change in the relationships during the past month. 

We have spent more time together as a family unit, as there were no social engagements, and I know pretty soon we will be back to reality of busy schedules. But I really wanted to take the time to honour the blessed time we had during this month. I believe in showing appreciation when the kids have done a small task, or made small improvements in behaviour, as it is the intention which matters. I believe that by affirming and acknowledging them, it makes them feel respected and that their effort has been appreciated.

These boys have taught me to laugh, at myself, they have brought a vibrant energy to my life, for which I am eternally grateful. And along with the frustrations, they have made me proud, made me feel accepted without judgement, and most importantly brought joy and love with a different dimension. 
Thank you to my three gifts, who helped me see life with a new perspective, who showed me that life does not have be so serious all the time.

"There are two lasting gifts we can give a child.
The first is roots.
The second is wings."

-Unknown

And today's OOTD is one captured by my youngest son, who accompanies me often, who has long conversations with me and is such a sponge for knowledge. He attempts everything with an intensity always striving for perfection. With that intensity he has brought profound lessons for me.

This outfit features a one of a kind sequin parka, locally manufactured by Coast & Koi, who specialise in handmade bespoke shoes. This parka was the only item of clothing manufactured which I grabbed the moment I saw it. Paired with a pair of leather boots I've had in wardrobe for about 7 years, another investment piece!
















Outfit details:
Coast & Koi sequin parka
Black knit (old)
Black skinny (old)
Country Road boots (old)
Michael Kors Bag
Mimco oversize link bracelet
Trenery scarf
Giorgio Armani sunglasses from Sunglass Hut

Caio for now, 
RuBe xoxo



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