Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Spring !

Asslam alykom:

Spring is my favorite time of year. I love to see the flowers blossoming. Spring can also bring some lessons in homeschooling. You can start a little garden with your children by seed or just getting a few already grown plants from your nearest store. We do a little bit of both. I take my children with and they pick out all of the flowers and seeds. Beware: this could take some time. There were so many flowers at our local store that my children had a hard time deciding which ones to get. Once we chose just the right ones, we carefully transported them home to plant. The children where involved in the whole process right down to the planting. They carefully planned and plotted where they would plant each little flower before they started to dig. After it was all complete, we had a nice little garden. As you can see from the pictures below it is quite modest but it has potential.

This is the beginnings of the herb portion of our garden. We have planted mint, thyme,dill, parsley and two different kinds of basil.

This sign is at the front door stuck right in with the flowers. It is quite easy to make. Making a few with your kids as a nice garden project is real simple. I used a tile left over from a bathroom remodeling we had done. You paint the tiles with glass paints. Just follow the directions on the paint in how to cure it. I attached mine to a pole I painted white. I attached a piece of lace to the tile with clear silicone glue. Then, I nailed the lace on to the white pole. Here is another nice little project for some more garden art. I have made these before but not quite as flashy as these. The ones that I made where simpler in design. Just be careful when making these the metal can be a little sharp.

Now that you have seen the part of the garden that we planted from already grown flowers, you will have to wait for the pictures of the ones we planted as seeds. We dug a small area for those and planted mostly sunflower seeds, marigolds and four o'clocks. The four oc'clock seeds we harvested from last year so, it will be interesting to see if they grow. While we were digging up the ground to plant the seeds, my son was so interested at what was under the ground. He could not keep up with the amount of creatures we dug up. There where worms, beetles, spiders and many bugs we could not identify. He said that Subhanah Allah there is so many living things just right here in the ground next to the house. Here is a nice website to help you and my son identify these bugs. Here is one more site about plants that I would like to share. My kids love the Venus fly trap plant, and really want to get one. Here is a site that has some nice videos on carnivorous plants.

Monday, March 20, 2006

The Reality of Death

Assalam alykom:

It was Sunday morning and my husband just received a phone call that a dear sister in our Islamic community has fallen ill. She is in a coma and in critical condition. We were outside as he is telling me the news. I can hear the birds singing their morning tunes, but my mind is drifting to this shocking information. I am stunned, I just saw her two days ago at the masjid. Her conversations with me that evening, delightful as usual. Apparently, she had an aneurysm in her head on Saturday night as she lay sleeping. She was rushed to the hospital where they hooked her up to all the life saving machines. She laid there for two more days until the doctors determined that she was brain dead. Now, it is Monday evening and they unhooked her from the machines. The impact of her death on our whole community was felt that day. She left behind two teenage boys and a husband of twenty seven years. The reality of death set in for most of us in our small circle of Muslims. She was someone who was health conscious. She was only in her late forties with no serious ailments. It just goes to show us that Allah is the decider of our fate.
No matter how substantiated we are in living healthy and prolonging our life, Allah is the one who plans when our death will actually arrive. There is an old saying that I know. "Live your life as if everyday will be your last day" As Muslims we should remember this. We get all caught up in to the fast paced world ,and we forget about the "other world". That is the world of the life in the grave.
With the realization of death through this sister, it became a reminder for us all. Many of us where talking about how frightening it is that you may go to sleep at night and never wake up. However, Allah gave us benefit in dua. So there is hope for our fears. There are certain dua you say in the morning and evening. There are also certain dua that you can say each night before you sleep.
The sadness of my dear friend's family must be intense. Therefore,I pray that Allah grants ease to them.

"To Allah we belong and to Him we shall return"

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Islamic Parenting

Asslam alykom:

We live in a time and place of demoralization,values deterioration, and severe desensitization to wrong and right.

Two main reasons are as follows:
1. Lack of adequate and correct methods and standards to raising children to be good men and women.
2. Excessive freedom. Personal freedom in many cases becomes the license to be immoral.

Personal freedom in many cases becomes the cover under which hide all kinds of evil. Promoters of immortality under the cover of protecting personal freedom want us to believe that the immoral practices people do as long as it does not affect you directly, it is not of your business. This could be one of the biggest lies of the 21st century.

This lie is in direct contradiction to the Torah, Injeel and most importantly, the Quran.

7:164 {When a group among them said, why do you admonish a people whom Allah is about to destroy or to punish with a severe punishment? They responded, to be absolved before your Lord and maybe they will protect themselves from Allah.}

3:131{You are the best nation that came to humanity, because you enjoin in good and eradicate evil and believe in Allah.}

The affect of immorality is like contamination in the air. Believers must speak out against evil practices. We as Muslims, still preserve a higher level of morality and values than the other classes of the society. We still have a mighty challenge ahead of us. That is to raise our children to be pious men and women in an arena of moral and theological chaos.

This introduction was taken from the study guide for the Parenting series available at www.loveallah.net.

You can listen to the audio for these very important lessons here:

Parenting Workshop
by Abunour
1. Parenting Models

Wednesday, March 01, 2006


Assalm Alykom:

I think crayons are a top staple in the journey of homeschooling. The young and the old find uses for them. My older children use crayons to color maps for History, label bone parts for Science, or just to draw and color. If you have toddlers like me, you will find that they use them too! They may have them for an afternoon snack. They may also draw you a beautiful mural on your living room wall or your dining room table. What ever the age, there is a use for crayons. However, do you know how they are made? I did not until I read this.

There are alot of projects and ideas for using crayons. Here is an article that I came across that had a number of good ideas in it. The article is called Crazy for Crayons.

One of the most original ideas for crayons has to come from Crayola. They even have a section for Islamic Art

Do you have alot of broken crayons? Well, with my toddlers and their activeness, I have alot of these. Well, if you do too, do not throw them away. Here are some ideas to recycle crayons.

I hope you find this post helpful in using your crayons!