The day has ended, but mine has really just begun. #midterms @instaFit_App #instaFitApp #instaFitAppForLikes #sunset #gorgeous #red #orange #pink #sky #skyporn #cloudporn #pretty #beautiful #sunrise #sun #photooftheday #nature #clouds #warm #instagood #view #horizon #night #morning #silhouette #instasky #all_sunsets

The day has ended, but mine has really just begun. #midterms @instaFit_App #instaFitApp #instaFitAppForLikes #sunset #gorgeous #red #orange #pink #sky #skyporn #cloudporn #pretty #beautiful #sunrise #sun #photooftheday #nature #clouds #warm #instagood #view #horizon #night #morning #silhouette #instasky #all_sunsets

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I’ve been slaving away in front of my laptop for fall too long. So, I’m using absolutely disgusting font schemes to maintain my interest (and perhaps disgust). Hopefully this will allow me to finish faster so that I can promote the font to something tasteful. 

I’ve been slaving away in front of my laptop for fall too long. So, I’m using absolutely disgusting font schemes to maintain my interest (and perhaps disgust). Hopefully this will allow me to finish faster so that I can promote the font to something tasteful. 

I’ll be managing 24 mini monsters at Sunday school tomorrow. These are for the good ones. #teaching #kids #rewards #puppets

I’ll be managing 24 mini monsters at Sunday school tomorrow. These are for the good ones. #teaching #kids #rewards #puppets

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For the last two years, I’ve coordinated internships and work opportunities to work toward more fruitful opportunities in senior year. 

SubhanaAllah, no matter how much we plot and plan, everything is in Allah (swt)’s hands. During the summer, I planned out every day. As soon as the first day of classes began, my schedule took a 360 degree turn. 

Found this in my notepad from ages ago. Pretty wise advise from my ten-year-old self if I do say so. #advice #throwback

Found this in my notepad from ages ago. Pretty wise advise from my ten-year-old self if I do say so. #advice #throwback

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That moment your journalism professor tells you to write a paragraph and you don’t know if you should write a graf or a paragraph. — mwah

Habits I’m Changing This Semester

At the end of every stage or step in life, you realize the things you shouldn’t have done and the things you should’ve raced toward. 

When I gave my valedictorian speech at Springbrook High School four years ago, my teacher emailed me, expressing surprise at my ability to speak publicly. She said I should’ve joined the theater. Another teacher told me I could’ve been excellent for another opportunity. I started to see so many opportunities I didn’t take advantage of. 

As I enter my last year of undergrad, I feel much of the same way. I’m realizing that MSA is not helping me thrive and learn more about myself as an individual. Of course, I don’t have anything against MSA, but it has kept me in a bubble I’ve used as a shelter and an excuse for not getting involved in other capacities. 

I also haven’t been outspoken in my classes, despite having so much to say in my mind. I’ve failed to compartmentalize tasks. 

This semester alhamdulillah, I’m changing all of them. I don’t have to say yes to every opportunity that comes knocking. I’ve learned to say no to leadership positions. I’ve learned to speak up in class from the very beginning. I’ve learned to strap down when I need to get work done and chill when I know I can and deserve it. I’ve started running on weekday mornings because my body is an amanah I need to take care of and my health is a key to success in other domains.

It’s ironic that such simple habits are forming as my undergrad career ends. Personal growth is slow, but it takes you somewhere. Alhamdulillah, after trimming the fat from my life, I feel like I’m getting somewhere.

I love looking up into the sky because it honestly reminds me of God. I’m awed by the way the storm clouds meet the ones at bay. #clouds #sky #instanature #photooftheday

I love looking up into the sky because it honestly reminds me of God. I’m awed by the way the storm clouds meet the ones at bay. #clouds #sky #instanature #photooftheday

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Decluttering, Conscious living and Ibadah

Our choices as consumers define the kind of world we want to live in. Take this way of life to heart in how you shop for clothes, food and other products.

Buy less, choose well. Think consciously. Remove that which you don’t need. Cherish that which you do. Live simply, but live well. Let your humility extend to the clothes you wear and the food you eat. 

I’ve always had this crazy idea that I would judge people based on their closets. This does not mean I judge them by what they wear. It means that I judge them by how they conduct themselves, filter what is needed and what is not, differentiate between wants and needs, and - ultimately - organize themselves. 

Our tiniest of choices reveal who we are. If we tailor every act with a good intention, even the process of decluttering your closet or going shopping with friends can become an act of worship. 

I just halved my closet alhamdulillah. I’ve packed a few boxes for donation to Waziristan - not of old clothes I no longer need, but of gentle used clothes that I know someone else has a stronger need for. Let the shopping purge begin.

You can tell more about a person based on what he or she says about others than based upon what others say about the individual.

I am a photographer and I have problems

Today, I was taking a selfie / nafsi with a friend. She had the camera, but my face was overexposed and completely blown out. So, I told her to focus the iPhone on me. 

Instead, I just proceeded to slap myself three times. In real life.

Yep, I officially have no sense of the divide between the digital and real world. 

Opening my heart to the house of Allah (swt)

Someone I know recently asked me a question that was jolting, “You’re getting more involved in the [insert masjid here],” she said. “You trying to get married?”

I was appalled. Is this really why we take these steps? Is this how we interpret others’ actions?

My journey to the masjid - which has only just begun - is about so much more. I have always struggled with the desire to please other people. I have always feared being someone else in private and public. I have always hesitated to pray sunnah in the masjid because I know I struggle to do so at home. 

I’m taking slow steps to become more involved in my local masjid. My experiences at my previous masjid left me with a very close-minded interpretation of other people. I searched for external manifestations of religion. I became extremely frustrated with lax deadlines, poor administration and the general feeling that my skill set and desire to learn would go unfulfilled.

For a while, I told myself that I couldn’t work in the masjid. The environment would leave me self-conscious and dry out my drive. So, I only went for the occasional jumuah and event. 

Now, as I begin to take the wheel into my own hands (quite literally), I’ve started to feel like I can make a difference and that the environment isn’t corrosive. As soon as I earned my parents’ trust to drive my car (a whole different sage all together), I enrolled myself in two classes at the mosque. My parents are alhamdulillah extremely supportive of all my efforts. They have never made me feel like I shouldn’t seek knowledge. 

But when my father drove me to these places, I always felt like I wasn’t seeking on my own. There was a guilt within me. If I was taking these steps through my parents, shouldn’t I be better to them? What was the point of this knowledge if I was rude to my parents and didn’t keep up with my daily responsibilities? Would I just be adding more knowledge into myself only to never truly implement it? Was I being hypocritical? Were my intentions really pure? 

As I drive myself to the masjid, I truly feel like I’m in control. This is my choice and I will judge myself and my abilities accordingly.

Sure, I’m not perfect. But I can’t expect myself to innately grow everything that is going to create a well-rounded person. As soon as I feel like my intentions are going somewhere else, I will turn back.

I still don’t typically pray sunnah in the masjid. I try to do so at home. It’s a struggle. It’s a journey. But alhamdulillah, it has begun. 

good:

What’s wrong with our food system?

Food = money

good:

What’s wrong with our food system?

Food = money

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As I reflect on myself, I’m realizing that I’ve confused hayaa with shyness in how I speak to the opposite gender and conduct myself in public. Shyness suggests fear and intrepidity. Hayaa is consciousness of Allah. 

Marriage is Not an Escape

When a mother reads fairytales of beautiful princesses and courageous princes to her daughters, she tells them that happily ever afters don’t automatically come once prince charming is within reach. 

Marriage is Not an Escape

When a mother reads fairytales of beautiful princesses and courageous princes to her daughters, she tells them that happily ever afters don’t automatically come once prince charming is within reach. 

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