Wednesday, January 25, 2017

DIY Gummy Bears

We have been wanting to make gummy bears for a long time. Alhamdulilah a few simple ingredients and gummy bear molds, we were able to make our own gummy bears. A quick and easy way to have gummy bears, and you can add your own vitamins too.

They were delicious and easy to make
1 cup of fruit juice (we used 100% cherry and also used lemon juice too)
8 tsps beef gelatin  ( The Better Kosher Gelatin  )
2 tbs honey (I only used one tbs and was fine with how it tasted, if you do not want to use honey (because you may not want to warm it) you can also use stevia, and we still liked how it turned out too with the stevia)
It is up to you to add the vitamin of your choice.. I added probiotics (you do not have to use it)

It is totally easy mashaAllah you basically lightly warm ingredients together until the gelatin dissolves... at the end add vitamins or probiotic (I waited until it was cool enough, to add the probiotics, you do not want the heat to kill them, so I really pushed the limit in waiting until it was cool enough to add) and then quickly use your droppers and put the mix in the gummy bear molds, and then put it in the freezer for about 10 minutes inshaAllah. It was such a hit with the children and really took no time to make mashaAllah!

It is great because you can also mix it up, mix different juices together and come up with pretty awesome combinations.

InshaAllah, I think we will make these more often. Pretty simple and delicious. I think the one tbs of honey was sufficient enough for sweetness in my opinion and the children did not think it was too sweet or too tart mashaAllah.

Gummy bear molds, we purchased them on Amazon mashaAllah and it was just enough for the recipe. There were three in the pack mashaAllah with droppers.


--Ameera R.

Friday, January 20, 2017

The Passing Of A Prince

One month later...  If you would have told me, that I would be eventually blogging as a widow, I would have probably said that I couldn't imagine it!

Well here I am, writing as a widow. My husband (may Allah have mercy on him, and grant him jannah ameen ameen) passed away last month, December 20th, 2016, from complications from his condition.  My whole life changed and I am learning to heal and process this tremendous loss with our six children.

I met my husband in 2006 mashaAllah, and as I like to tell people, I started this adventure 10 yrs ago when I met a Prince from Kings County (Brooklyn NYC) married him, and became his princess alhamdulilah. When we first met, I felt like "wow this handsome guy, I cant believe he is even giving me the time of day." Lord knows I am thankful for all the time of our days, our road trips, and adventures.

I think of an old status message I shared on facebook
" I've dedicated ten years of my heart to this loveable adventurous guy from NYC. I believed in him when he doubted himself. I carried the team when our spirits were low SubhanAllah. For a slim 120 pound woman....I carried the load of everyone in my house SubhanAllah and He made strong to do it. I am far from weak and know my limits.

God is testing me and I need the strongest of duaas from my sisters 
I decided ten yrs ago to wake up to the same face everyday. In 10 yrs God blessed me to carry and nourish my husband's six sons.
When his health was/is tested. .. I had to step it up. Every day im grinding ...
I ask sometimes why He chose me? And its clear that God is keeping me together and showing me that when you make a commitment there will be test that may shake it but He made my roots firm. ...10 yrs my roots are deep. I've been planted in Idris' life and I've bloomed in beautiful ways. But
While my leaves are being pulled and my flower is roots are holding on.
Every day I harvest from my marriage and it has grown in many ways. Its also growing in a different direction now. Im seeking His divine wisdom."

If you have read our books on homemaking, you would know that I was not the same homemaker, I am today. My husband had a big part in that, he was patient and gentle, as I grew more and more into my role as a wife and homemaker.  Alhamdulilah and as the years passed in our relationship I wanted to get more homemaking inspiration. He encouraged me to start TMH and alhamdulilah it has been a big inspiration for me. I am so thankful I followed through with his advice.

My husband (may Allah have mercy on him ameen) always encouraged my studies, my herbal lessons and all my dreams and goals alhamdulilah. Needless to say, he has been as he would say.. my "biggest fan" I have never been too fond of the word fan, and would say he is my bestest (yes bestest) friend and number one supporter. I miss him dearly, and he is always on my mind, and when I think of him, which is often, I say a duaa for him. I ask Allah to send him to me in my dreams. The relationship I had with my husband, taught me so much and to this very moment, I hear his words in my head and heart...his advice and I use that to keep going... I see him every day in our sons. Who not only look like him, but act like him as well subhanAllah.

When Ameer Idris passed away, I became heartbroken. It was hard for me to tell the children, to talk to people, to even get out the bed. It is still hard to go about daily living,and adjusting to the new norm. I am comforted by my husband's constant advice, lessons, and memories. I cry daily, but I also pray for him every single day. This is a pain, I cannot describe, the emotions are many, and each day I am striving to just get through the day. God is getting me through, He is sending people, people of prayer, people of love, and people of light. I still listen to the last voicemail he left on my phone, when he didnt pick up when I called, when he returned my call and couldnt reach me, he left a message....telling me he missed my call because he was praying, and you have to give Allah his rights, and not put anything before Allah..... it's a beautiful reminder and way for me to hear his voice.

Born September 19th, God created a beautiful human being. He would walk the earth for 39 years, and during those years he would share with others  his love of Allah, Prophet Muhammad (salAllahu alayhi wa salam) and, oh my gosh subhanAllah... his constant speech was always reminders about Allah, he never had a conversation with someone where he didnt mention God. He would always bring everything back to Allah.  He is, as Shaykh Hamza described  "God- intoxicated"and would always teach me a duaa, surah, and read tafsir wit/h me and talked to me about his theology studies. I would spend hours listening to him, and discussing his views and learnings
Anyone who knew Ameer Idris, knew he spent a lot of time educating the people about the one true religion: Islam

As Imam Zaid Shakir said "Popularly known simply as Idris, he was deeply loved by all who knew him. He loved the scholars and people of Dawah dearly, beginning with his hometown Imam, Imam Siraj Wahhaj. Idris was a mainstay at Islamic educational programs. From Abiquiu, New Mexico; Hayward, California; Fez, Morocco; to Madina Munawwarah; no matter how far, Idris would find a way, in many instances a mysterious way, to be there. Idris himself was a mystery. A loving and beloved mystery.

Brother Idris was also a renowned street Da'i. He had written his own pamphlets and other Dawah materials and spent countless hours pounding the pavement explaining Islam to ordinary folks. Idris had a great affinity for the ordinary people who are sadly overlooked, at least in this country, by far too many Muslims.
May Allah forgive our dear brother for any sins or transgressions, and grant him Jannah. Brother Idris leaves his wife, Ameera Rahim, and six young children. May Allah make things easy for them and give them strength during these difficult days..."   (please say ameen)

SubhanAllah, I remember writing an article about him in sisters magazine about being married to a man on a mission:
A story my husband shared on his facebook page:
"Alhamdoo leellah, was self checking out at the grocery store & was short 42¢ ... So looked in my coat pocket & found 60¢ ... So uttered the words ... "God is good"& the helping cashier ... uttered "He is a good man" ... So we couldn't just let this one go ... So we responded "We don't say God is a man, we say He is The Good Lord, since all men die & God can never die" ... She seemed taken aback ... Then she gathered herself & said ... Ur right God can never die ... We affirmed her & said ... "He is The Ever Living" ... Alhamdoo leellah we live to give Dawah / Invitation to Proper Guidance. " -Ameer Idris Rahim

My husband was very big on keeping positive, he would wake up every single morning with a happy face, and greet me with a "As salamu alaykum, good morning my love." mashaAllah. He taught me how to keep trusting in Allah. One of our last text messages, he wrote to me said "You are never alone, you have Allah." he cared so much for the health of his soul and mine. Eventually we will all leave this earth, we pray that we are in a good state of being when we do leave. It is not always easy to accept, and in fact it is quite hard for me, but my prayer is that God gives me more ease and strength to continue.

Ten years of memories, and love shared, makes me thankful to Allah that He gave me such a wonderful person, and that we truly changed each other's lives. 

God showed me what it means to be committed, when my husband was first diagnosed, my load had intensified. When it comes to marriage...we make a promise to each other and God to be committed helpers of one another, and I was by his side through the ups and downs, the good health days and the hard ones, all the way until he died in my arms in December.

I am thankful for the out pour of the love and support me and the children have been getting ever since the world learned of his passing. While it is not easy for me to reach everyone that messaged, called, donated, sent gifts and cards and kept making duaa. I have to thank everyone here on this blog, thank you all so much for everything ...really....everything.  The tears you may have shed on my and the children's behalf, the heartache you have felt for this grieving family...subhanAllah it leaves me speechless how others are affected by our lives and wanting to remove the pain and hurt that we feel.... but because they cannot, they keep making duaa for us.

The children are grieving, as to be expected.... we spend our days singing songs my husband taught us, sharing memories and learning to celebrate the life my husband led... a God loving, God conscious, positive, peaceful, and full of service kind of life.

My husband always loved teaching the children at the Maqasid retreat and seeing his friend Shaykh Yahya Rhodus.

We are taking our grief, and inshaAllah turning it into doing more acts of service, and sadaqa that will benefit Ameer Idris in the akhirah. I pour my love that I have for him, in doing things that will honor him and benefit his soul ...May Allah accept it from us ameen. My goal is to live more of the dreams, my husband and I shared... once my heart is a little more healed... though it was always ache and long to be in his company....

What is next for us? God knows best, I only take things as slowly as possible. Still blogging, and working on healing. Making sure that the children and I are getting much tender loving care as possible and surrounding ourselves with family and friends who are making sure we are being taken care of alhamdulilah.

May Allah reward each and every one of you... I am speechless and thankful by the love we are receiving... my heart appreciates it. Cannot say for sure I expected it, but I can say for sure that I am grateful for every single thing...

InshaAllah I will continue to blog, and update everyone here... our journey, homemaking inspiration and our usual marriage thoughts and articles. Please keep lifting us in prayer.... we will continue to need it.

In the words of my late husband,,, may Allah have mercy on him, make his grave spacious and full of light ameen:

"Those who know better, having proper knowledge, know the greatest richness is contentment.
Being thankful for all we have & all we don't have.
Alhamdoo leellah hear Rabbil alameen = The Praise belongs to God-Allah, Lord of all the worlds...." - Ameer Idris Rahim

Thursday, January 19, 2017

5 Ways To Love Yourself MORE

Yep, there I am, jumping on the trampoline in my sisters yard yesterday. As I told a friend, you can't help but smile on a trampoline. I couldn't jump and be angry, or feel sad at the same time. 

Alhamdulilah I felt like reaching for the sky, free, and alive. I haven't felt that way since my husband passed away last month (December 20th, 2016). Life has not been the same. Yesterday I decided to get some fresh air and I felt good. It was nice to step outside for a little bit.

My last post was written on loving your husband's more, which can also be applied to wives. Our time here isn't long, and in losing my husband, I am extra reminded to encourage wives to love their husbands more. That has always been part of my blog's goal, but God is telling me to remind women more, through my own experience.

But in loving your husbands more, do not forget yourself. You are important. Yes, some women need to be reminded that they are important. You have to take care of yourself/ On my journey to healing, I am learning that in order for me to heal, I have to continue to nurture every area of my being. I am a whole person, so I have to focus on everything, my spiritual health, emotional health, physical and mental. I cannot neglect any area. Especially nowadays. 

I can share a few things that is helping me currently in my life. Your list may look different, and that is okay! As long as you have a list of things you can do today to truly love yourself more. If you feel inspired from my 5, inshaAllah, take a moment and write down your five or more and work on doing that daily. 

I know in the hustle and bustle of daily parenting, it is not always easy to slide in your absolute no children ways of enjoying yourself, but we must do what we can and be realistic in what we CAN do. Yes many of us would love an all expense paid weekend vacation to recharge ourselves, give ourselves a little TLC (tender, loving, care) but realistically many of us cannot do that. 

Here are some ways I have been loving myself more

1.) Keep praying- yep, because my connection to God is very important and He cares for me, He takes care of me and my family. Divine counsel is the best kind of counsel. So when I am crying my eyes out, or need some help in getting through the day, God is The One who will pull me through and show me the way to go. I show love for myself by keeping my spiritual health strong. It is so easy to fall into despair and negative feelings, but if you keep reminding yourself to trust God, His wisdom, and His guidance then inshaAllah you will have a lot more peace in your life. I do not understand His ways all the time, I ask Him to help me accept it, because there is a reason, beyond what I know. Love yourself, by relying on The One who loves you and wants the best for you. Loving yourself, is also loving your soul. 
Loving your soul, --Love The One who created it and can give your heart ease. Your connection to Him is the most important connection for your well being.

2.) Enjoy nature- If that means, sitting outside in the backyard, going for a walk, or taking the children to the park while you sit and enjoy the view. Go outside. I came to visit my sister and stayed in the house the whole time, I was forced to go out yesterday to run some important errands, and while I was out there it was nice to feel the sun on me, and I even decided to walk back to my sisters house, it was a 30 minute walk with the children and we had such a good time. The fresh air felt amazing and it started to get cloudy, and I said subhanAllah how beautiful it is today! Even in our busy day, we can fit in a walk, or sitting on our porch as the children play. Go outside, breathe in the air and relax for a moment.

3.) Write- Start a journal, whether it be a gratitude based, poetry, or just reflection type of journal, start one. I decided to get back into writing poetry again. The point is to have a creative outlet, a place to express your thoughts, your feelings, and your goals. Write about your accomplishments and give yourself some love by acknowledging when you are doing well, your attempts and efforts. Your emotional health is important. Having a blog is a great outlet for me, to share my thoughts and what I have learned in my life. Alhamdulilah it is a extra blessing when others can benefit.

4.) Speak words of love --one of my friends encouraged me a couple months ago to look in the mirror and say positive affirmations about myself. Do the same. Wake up each morning and say something nice about yourself. Be your own cheerleader and tell yourself that you are happy about your accomplishments, Say what you like, love about yourself. It can be as simple as "Alhamdulilah Ameera, you are amazing" my aunt in law (may Allah have mercy on her ameen) would tell me when she saw me "Here comes my amazing ameera." I would smile, she truly knew how to make someone feel good themselves, but we cannot always wait for others to validate us, we should love ourselves more and say good words about yourself, to yourself and never allow others to do the opposite.

5.) Exercise & Eat right- You have one body, love yourself and take care of yourself by nurturing that body that Allah has blessed you with. You do not need a gym membership to get going. Start by walking the neighborhood, use workout videos, and if you're extra blessed to have a trampoline, please go use it! Eat foods that will be a benefit to your body and not harm it. This not only takes care of your physical well being, but it is also good for your mind, It is good for your family.

May God continue to bless you all, I understand that motherhood, and being a wife, can feel at times a bit overwhelming and takes a lot of energy. Remember that God will reward you for all your loving work, just remember Him often, and take time to love yourself daily. Love yourself more, by not negatively comparing yourself to other mothers. We all have our moments, all have our test, we are all on this journey and we are all striving to get closer to God, on this journey our test may be different, we are all tested in many ways. InshaAllah let us support each other more and stop beating ourselves up, because we are negatively comparing ourselves to the other mother. Trust me, the other mother is not without her own test. Pray for each other, not prey on each other.

Saturday, January 14, 2017

5 Ways To Love Your Husband MORE

I had to blow the dust off the blog tonight, as I only write when I am feeling inspired. SubhanAllah, tonight feels like a good night to share a few thoughts on the blog.

How can you, love your husband more?

1.) Speak words that will uplift his spirit. I remember when I would be feeling nervous, and anxious about some event, and my husband (may Allah have mercy on him, ameen) would say encouraging words, that made me feel like the most confident woman in the world. We have the ability to be that voice of encouragement in our mates lives. What mountains we cannot move, when our spouse speaks life into our being! Through out the day, speak to your mate in a way that will help them be better. 

2.) Put your love into action: Yes you can say "I love you" all day long, but adding to that by doing loving gestures, show and prove what we feel inside. Surprising our spouse by writing a love note, or sending a loving text, adds a little more joy to their days. In a world where there is tension, test, and other matters.... how refreshing is it to see a nice gesture of love from our spouse? A few ways you can show more love through the day:

* Write love notes

* Call just because
* Send a loving text

* Surprise your spouse with a lunch date
* Make his favorite meal
* Give him a card
* Put together a little gift (think teddy bear)

* Send a video to his phone with a loving message

3.) Pray with your husband- A closeness with Allah, brings you and your spouse closer together and increases the love for one another and sets the tone in the home for a more spiritual and God conscious home.  Praying with my husband (may Allah have mercy on him, ameen) is one of my fondest memories. After prayer we would sit together and dhikr, he would pull out his tafsir and read to me. At that time he would also teach me a new duaa, or work on the one he was teaching me. Praying with my husband, increased my love for him, because we are here to not only help each other in this world, but we are also here to help each other be in good standing in the next. That is part of loving your spouse, that love... makes you want for them to get close to Allah and you love to be a part of helping them in that.

4.) Love him HIS way- take interest in what he likes and join him in it. Some husbands are into sports and they would love for their wife to join in on something that they enjoy. When we can connect with our spouse on the things that interest them, it shows that we care, we want to understand and be part of what brings them joy. If your husband likes to go fishing, plan a romantic fishing date. Yes you can make that romantic! If he loves to go camping, or hiking, plan to join him in it and inshaAllah he will be happy to have his best friend, the love of his life, by his side. My husband (may Allah have mercy on him ameen) would always get excited when I would sit in the room with him and watch his favorite movie. His eyes would light up and he would say "You're in here with me!" and I would reply "Yep, going to watch this movie with you." and he would have the biggest smile on his face mashaAllah alhamdulilah. Really a lot of times it is the simple things like that, that makes a big difference in our spouses life.

5.) Touch him- how easy and simple is this? A hug through out the day, when he first enters the home, or when he leaves for work. Holding hands and taking each moment to simply touch, creates a closeness and fosters the love that is already there. How often do we go through the day and we have not once hugged our spouse? Don't allow your mate to be "touch deprived" as my late husband would say. There is nothing like at the end of the day, when you are tired and have done so much, that your spouse gives you a hug, that melts away all the troubles of the day. Never take for granted how beneficial a simple touch can be.

As we are blessed, to have someone in our life that God has blessed us with. It is important that we show and give thanks to Allah for the gifts He has given. Though my husband has passed away, I reflect on ten years of marriage and all the joys we had and the lessons I have learned, in prayers that others may benefit and truly put more effort into loving their spouse today.

~Ameera Rahim