February in a Nutshell

“January in a Nutshell’ proved to be popular, so I had to do the same again… Thanks to you guys who told me I was hilarious… Ok ok, that’s a lie, not hilarious, just funny…. But google theasaurus states that funny and hilarious are the same, so don’t come at me. Have a word with Google…… And I’ll be just here being hilarious!

One thing I love about February, Pay Day comes so damn quick! Hi five to short months- we only get the one, so hi five to February and now it’s gone, 11 more dreaded long months to go through…until its November and then we complain how fast the years gone…..

So heres what gone on in Febuary, seriously considering its the shortest month of the year, A hell of a lot has happened

1. Storm Ciara and Dennis and Jorge

Weve been hit by 3 storms this month alone! and it doesnt seem to be settling down. The Area I live in hasn’t been affected much (although my fence did break) but other areas are going through the worse of it. Ciara came and went, Dennis decided to come in batches and Jorge is not giving up. The Worst affected area being in West Wales….. Storms are coming and going yet Boris (Johnson that is, although he is considered to be a storm aswell) is yet to be seen.

2. Coronavirus

Is it a moral panic? Is it real? Is it true? Is it lies? Is it man made? What is happening people? A Lot and nothing at the same time.

The number of coronavirus deaths has now reached 3,080, with the death toll in Iran at 66 (the highest outside China). In Italy, 52 people have died, while three have died in France.

What do I make of it, well theres more chance of me dying in a car accident then the Coronavirus, and that’s not going to stop me driving…

Here’s a few facts for you

And here’s a quick prevention guideline

Generally, stay clean, stay domesticated (which you should be doing regardless of Coronavirus) and dont book a flight to China, and I think you will be ok.

Brexit

Boris Johnson has stepped up his game, and got to work more faster than any Politician I know. All for the wrong reasons though, things have tightened up on the immigration front, heres a few changes https://metro.co.uk/2020/02/29/post-brexit-immigration-rules-12324404/.

Plus we going back to blue passports! This is the official stamp. We are out of the EU.

Caroline Flack

…. Gave up her life at age of 40. Such a devastating story and loss of a beautiful person. I don’t know her. I don’t watch Love Island. It doesn’t interest me at all, but I sure do know people who watch it, and its being suggested that the Media drove her to this. Especially The Sun newspaper…….

….. I just cant fathom it, How can someone be so low that they think committing suicide is the option out?

Prayers with her family and friends at this precious time, Also prayers to all the other suicide victims and families. If you do know anyone going through hard time, Please keep an eye on them. A Little Love goes a Long way.

Royal Tea and Jam

Its not the begginning of the new month if I dont talk about my favourite family in the whole wide world.

And guess What! Prince Charles, Camilla, Prince William and Kate came to Leicester!! and I missed them! I so badly wanted a selfie with Charles. That would’ve been awesome! My life wouldve been made, I missed out……Although I do think the Queen would have been ‘Off with my head’. But hey…. I wouldve met her too….

Harry and Meghan have been summoned! They are back to finish off their duties and then its officially a ‘bye -bye’ to them. Although Harry has started his goodbye’s earlier- in Edinburgh he asked to be called as ‘Harry’ and not Prince Harry…. The beginning of the end. ~

Also it has now been clarified that they no longer can use ‘The Royal Sussex’ Brand. The Queen keeps on suprising me. Legend. Absolute Legend!

I must say im looking forward to seeing them, I do think they are a dynamic force, and they do bring alot of drama with them. But honestly would love to see William, Kate, Harry and Meghan together one last time.

Manchester City Football Club

I dont know if this is news or not, but the Boi told me this is big! so im adding it on. Manchester city has been banned from the Champions League for 2 seasons, and also charged with a £25million fine due to breaking financial fair play rules.

What does that mean? I dont have a clue….. Not really too fussed either, but if you want to know more, heres the webby https://www.theguardian.com/football/2020/feb/14/manchester-city-banned-from-champions-league-two-seasons-ffp-uefa

India

War on the streets of Delhi mainly targeted at the Muslim Communities. Im not going to say anything more. This is really affected me. Really really affected me, and I would rather not say anything when emotions run too deep.

Here is a link to find out whats happening https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-india-51612461?intlink_from_url=https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/topics/cqzp3xdyxq4t/new-delhi&link_location=live-reporting-story

Before I end, can I say how deeply ashamed I am of all the celebrities in India, This was their time to shine and make a difference. They are the worst of human beings. They belong on the bottom of the pile. Absolutely disgusted.(told you I’m affected)

Friends Reunion!

Could I be more happier?! Its official, its happening and I am ecstatic!

Cant wait for this !

Love and Regards

M11bna

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My Planner/Diary for 2020

So how did I choose my planner, it was different thats for sure. Yes. I know its just a planner. But that’s the point. It’s My planner, My time keeper and Diary for the whole year, and I need to get it right.

So after deciding on the Helloday Planner- as I have been using that 4 years in a row, and I felt disloyal if I went with another diary, I decided to wait until they have a promotional offer as every penny can make a difference.

Then….

My builder (and a very close family friend) was in the house and whilst fixing my lights he called out to me-

“Bhabhie, bhabhie…. I know what your favourite color is!… It’s red heneh?!” ( bhabhie means sister in law, and heneh means heneh!- he’s an Indian man- just go with it)

I was shocked, and blushing, and impressed, “yes, yes, it is- how did you know?”

His face dropped- he looked at me as though I had insulted him, ” GREY” he shouted “grey, grey is your favourite color, everything in this house is grey. Are you going to add colour in anywhere??- im tired of grey”

It was time for my face to drop. He is so right, my whole house is grey, every room is grey, from my living room, to my bedroom, or the boys room. It’s Grey…. And I claim red is my favourite colour. Ofcourse he thinks Im mad.

and then it hits me….. Evan my current diary is grey…. and so is the next one I want to buy! so Cancel, Cancel, Cancel….. and thats when I decided on the Amelia Lane Paper Diary, and I opted for the ‘Peony’ because theres no grey in it- it has pops of pink and reds! and its got peonies on it…….wha?? flowers you say? What grey? cant hear you!

and am I happy?? OH YES!

And here it is, its a beauty.

I wouldnt say that I was dissapointed with the unveiling part of the diary, but I would say that Hello Day Planner put alot more effort in the initial unveiling. (and I did miss that) but thats not to say what I have isnt good. I Do love it.

I love the look of it, especially the Golden rim, it gives it a beautiful look, and not just a diary look, but THE Diary look.

It has the year to view, month to view, and the week to view.

Vision board for the year to come to put down your resolutions

It has a monthly overview to track your progress over the year.

Before the start of the month for a full double page is dedicated to goals, habit trackers, income bills,expenses and savings (my favourite page!!)

Colorful stickers are provided for those extra special days. (I loved doing this. None of the Hello Day planners have this )

At the end of the Diary- a weekly health chart is provided and a full page for a bucket list (this isnt going to be enough for me. I need atleast two)

Gift buying list and a page dedicated to books and movies and right at the end along with the notes and the ideas a sleeve pocket is enclosed for flyaway papers.

I really dont think I can ask for any more in a diary

The planner can be found at http://www.amelialanepaper.co.uk

And now Im going to start filling my diary in.

Love and regards

m11bna

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October Reads…

It’s not very often that you can read 3 books in a row, and not be dissapointed by any of them. Just after reading one, and finally getting over it- you think nothing can beat it, and then the next one is just as good.

Then you think you got lucky with the second book, and the third one bowls you over .. (the one I’m reading right now is a drag through- so I didn’t get lucky on my fourth one)

Here’s a quick review of my reads in October

The Wife Between Us by Greer Hendricks.

A Tense psychological thriller for sure. You think you know it all, you think you understand the plot, you think you got it planned out, you think you know how its going to end….. and Boom. There she goes. So you read, go back a few pages and re-read. Yup. It happened that way- and the thought never even entered your head.

The Jealous wife, the younger replacement and the over obsessive husband, all thrown together with lies, deceit, betrayal, manipulation, and a ‘I never thought of that ending’ makes this an excellent read.

If you like your psychological thrillers, this sure will be in your top 10 books. Ive also found out that the directors of ‘The Girl on the Train’ are looking into making it a film. Read this before it comes out.

The Girl Who Played With Fire by Stieg Larsson

The sequel to “The girl with the Dragon Tattoo”, and just as emotionally enticing. You do not need to have read the first one to understand this book, it can be read as a standalone, but I guarantee after reading this you will want to read all 3.

It keeps you on edge throughout, as your constantly waiting for the writer to answer the questions he is throwing at you.

One part of the book was abit surreal and too much of a co-incidence, but apart from that I cannot fault it. Fast paced, dramatic, yet easy to follow and read.

Mornings in Jenin by Susan Abulhawa

I cried, I stumbled, I choked, I held my breath, and I continued reading with tears in my eyes.

By far the best book I have read EVER. This is going in my favourites and right at the top. Being an advocate of the Palestinian struggle, I found it difficult to read this book. It’s truth are bare and naked for everyone to read. No toning down, no reservations, just solid, hard, unfathomable truths to digest in a fictional story!

It explores life post- occupied Palestine. full of culture, lessons, and characters you could possibly be living next too, not knowing at all the horrors they are living.

This book touched my heart, and if anyone asks me for a good read- this is the one I recommend before all others.

I won’t go into it too much as I can get quite emotionally involved. Just READ it.

Let me know if you do read any of the above, or if you have already. Do feel free to share your thoughts.

Love and Regards

M11bna

CarBoot with Pops… It’s a Date.

“Make sure you wear jeans and trainors” he said before he put the phone down. Im starting to think this was not a good idea.

The hubby was going for his “Poker Weekend” ( I think you’ve figured by now that he’s poker obsessed) basically group of men, hire out a cottage- and play poker all day and night- for a full weekend. Crazy right? Ye I think so too. But I’m not complaining, that means a full weekend of me doing nothing. And when I say nothing. I mean nothing. The last time he went away I finished the whole of ‘Money Heist’ series on Netflix over the 3 days/2 nights. (You have to watch it! Sooo good!) The most I do is get up to answer the door to the takeout from deliveroo (I really am awful!).

But this time I called the pops and told him I’m free if he needs me for anything… And he tells me we should have some time out together. Just me and him. A Date with Pops.

I was looking forward to this, I think I really needed this. Not had a pops date in years. Ye we get together, I see him once a week minimum with everyone else in the family, but never alone. I receive atleast 20 videos/ messages from him throughout the day. Each day. Every day (*rolls eye*), which i never bother to open but send a 👍 just so he thinks I’ve watched it. …So I was excited. Untill ….

He tells me he’ll pick me up at 8 in the morning and that I should wear my trainors!

Doesn’t he know that I’m a afternoon tea type of person? With anxiety and a cuppa in my hand I awaited the beep of his car horn. At 8 on a Sunday morning (big yawn).

I’m not usually use to being driven around- apart from the hubby when we go on our family trip. I’m usually the driver. Evan when I go with my mum and dad. I drive. So today felt nice being driven around. (Good start Pops)

And where did he take me?

Yup. We ended up at Croft car boot sale in Leicester. A 20 mins drive away from my home. “Let me know if you want anything ma, it’s on me” he said and made his way through the masses of junk everywhere….

Initially I was reeling inside, I woke up early for this? I could’ve finished off Harry Potter and the Half blood Prince at home- I was watching this last night but fell asleep half way through. (I’m the type who watches this over and over and over ) Oh God. I was so glad it wasn’t raining!

But then I started enjoying myself. People sell anything and everything, like literally. And everyone is so friendly. Couple of them knew the Pops- as he did his rounds and said hello. Baskets were going for £1.50 and above. Where was this place when I was doing my event planning. I could’ve saved a hell of alot of money.

I ended up stopping Pops to go see stuff, it was quite funny because pops didn’t know what I would make of it.

Then I saw these above, I just remember laughing and I just had to take a picture. These are the gift bags you get when you travel on first class flights on British Airways. It’s a gift bag by ‘The White Company’.The hubby had the privilege of flying first class on a trip- and I remember he brought back 2 of these for the boys (he asked for another one from the stewardess) . We were fascinated. These lovely travel pouches- and inside was socks, eye masks, comb, toothbrush, toothpaste. Absolutely lovely little gifts…we were so fascinated. The boys kept them, and use them when we go abroad, And here’s boxes and boxes of them at £1 each. I wonder where the bloke got them from?

This is what you get inside each pack.

We carried on walking up and down each aisle, then I spotted these

The absolute love of my life. Books. 3 for £2.50. some of them were brand new. I just had to have them.

Some of the stuff was amazing. Like tables for £5- these are usually £40 inside stores. I didn’t need it, but I sure was tempted. If I had the space, I defo would bought 1 or 2 or maybe more.

It definately worked out to be a great date. Thanks Pops, and I’ll definately be going back…. Maybe not so soon like. But I will be going back.

I’m actually thinking of doing a clear out myself and make a day of it one day. The stuff people were buying and selling, I’m sure my junk will go….. It’ll have to be with the Pops ofcourse. Let’s see when the weather gets better.

For now I’ll be catching up with these. Can’t believe I got the lot for £5. And if their not good. I’ll put it in my box for my next car boot sale.

Love and regards

M11bna

My take on “Small Great Things” – Jodi Picoult

Do you ever get so consumed in a book, that you try and spend as much of your spare time reading, like every second counts?

I have 5 minutes maximum left before I need to go out to get to work, if I don’t leave in 5 mins I will be late. Honestly I should be leaving right now- that way should I get any disturbances along the way, the 5 minutes allowance will cater for it.

But I will be using every millisecond of that 5 minutes to continue reading this book.

Have any of you guys read this book? If not- Go and get it. It’s a heart stopper.

It’s about Ruth Jefferson a widowed, single parent, black midwife who was banned from looking after a newborn from the parents (Turk and Brittany Bauer- white supremacist) because of the colour of her skin.

This newborn ends up loosing his life whilst under her care- and she ends up being arrested for murder.

We get to see the whole novel unfold from 3 different viewpoints, Ruth, Turk and Kennedy- the female white lawyer defending Ruth.

Name of book taken from this quote. ” Both Ruth and Kennedy have moments in the novel where they do a small thing that has great and lasting repercussions for others” Jodi Picoult.

The book itself is quite disturbing and uncomfortable because it hits some home truths. Kennedy learns these home truths in the novel- it could almost be said that this novel is written as a means to teach us how Evan though we believe we are not racist, we show bias in unsuspected ways, one simple way is when we say “We do not see colour”.

How could this relate to me? As a British Muslim, in some parts of the novel I emphasised with Ruth, it’s a condition we go through- and also like Ruth we put it aside and continue with normal life. We try to belong. In other instances I was shocked. It is brutal. At points I had to put the book aside and breathe to allow it to censor in my mind. I found myself gulping in the frog in my throat, and batting away my water filled eyes.

Living in a multi cultural society I face only minimal amount of racism (it’s there, but not so apparent or threatening) but I hear of stories in other cities, and I feel blessed that I am away from it all.

The ending was dissapointing- for sure. I did a roll eye at one point- why ruin such a good book? It was very cliche- and I think this part was a downer for me. (I think once you read it. You will feel it too) it just felt- not REAL. But apart from that, I consumed my every second free to this book.

After getting over the very clichéd happy ending, we get an insight into Jodi Picoults journey in writing the book, and instantly I forgive her for the bad ending.

She has spent years trying to get the characters in place, and we can feel it through her writing. And Jodi is very brave to be writing a novel of this nature being a priveledged white women- I am sure she will get critism for it. It is fair to say that no matter how much you interact with a person- you can never be in there shoes- unless you are wearing it.

Hats off to her for writing such an emotional, heartbreaking, gut wrenching, tragic and very hard hitting- in your face novel.

It’s definitely in my list of ” best books” read for this year.

Love and regards

M11bna