Thursday, 2 April 2015

World Autism Awareness Day: Thoughts From a Big Sister

As I sit here waiting for my evening lecture to begin, some thoughts came to me that I would love to quickly share.
I have been given the blessing to love, and live with my little brother who is in the autism spectrum. I have learned so much from my brother and he has helped me evolve in ways I don't think I could have if I didn't have him. There is a 6 year age gap between us and I was aware pretty early on that my brother is different. Over the years I have grown to love and appreciate this difference between us and I would not ask Allah to change him. People living with Autism come in all shapes, sizes and colours. They may look different from you and I, or perhaps they may not. Either way our similarities are greater than our differences. One of the most important things I have learned is that they feel the same emotions as us. They can love, be happy, angry, overwhelmed and so on. However, when you are living with someone who does not have the basic communication skills to exhibit these emotions, you  realize you have to find other ways to figure out what they are trying to say. You can only do that when you take the time to break through any of the barriers between the two of you and really get to know them. My mother always finds a way to remind me of how much my brother's autism has been a blessing for all of us. I no longer think of my brother as someone who has "special needs", I see him as a young boy who has been given the challenge to find different ways to thrive in this world. If you ask me, he is doing a pretty darn good job. 

Sunday, 22 February 2015

Surround Yourself...


           The concept is so simple yet difficult to obtain. The power of positivity is greater than I could ever imagine. Recently I have noticed that I can achieve things I never thought I could achieve before. I am finding that I believe in myself more and more. I noticed that it is because of who and what I am surrounding myself with. These positive influences in my life have me believing that anything I want, I can have (if Allah is willing). I wish this was something I was more aware of during my first few years of university. So take a look at the people in your life and other major factors. You might need to change something and you might need to leave some things behind; and that is OK. Dig deep and make the change happen. Because I have come to learn that the key to success is not in the number of friends you have or how much money is in your bank account. The key to success is not even measured by long hours of studying. 

Just be positive, surround yourself with positivity and watch as your pieces come together. 

Friday, 20 February 2015

Business Casual - OOTD

Salam Everyone! 

           Recently I had a volunteering opportunity with my university and the dress code was business casual. I like very plain and simple pieces so if you are someone who also likes to keep it simple I thought this would be good inspiration for a job interview, work meetings and school meetings and events 
           Also it has been insanely cold this past month so I have resorted to taking my pictures right in the coziness of my own home *close to the fireplace* hehe  
Enjoy! xoxo 

Hijab: H&M
Maroon Blazer: Dynamite 
Black Cropped Pants: Urban Planet 
Black flowy T-shirt: Dynamite 
Black Booties: Ardene 
Bag: Gift 
Watch: SmartSet 

Tuesday, 16 December 2014

My Winter Beauty and Lifestyle Must Haves!


Winter/December is my favourite time of year, I hope you guys enjoy this post where I am just showing you what I religiously love to use through out the winter xox 

I love perfume and Chanel Chance to me is perfect for winter. I got this last year for my birthday (which just passed) so it reminds me of December and it is a heavy musky scent that reminds me of cold dark nights. Marc Jacob's Dot is a perfume I just got last week for my birthday and I do think it is more of a summery light scent, but it is my favourite scent right now and I know every time I smell it from now on it will link me to December. 

If you are like me and have dry skin, then taking care of your skin is essential. This Aveeno Clear complexion moisturizer is a must to keep my face hydrated. I use it as a morning time and night time moisturizer. I also have to exfoliate almost every day and I still use my DIY facial scrub which you can click here to see. I love this body shop body butter for all over my body after showers. No ghostly knees or elbows this winter for me! haha  

I know this isn't the best photo but I promise I'll have more blog posts coming up showing off these colours better soon! This cover girl lipstick in "Euphoria" is the perfect cool deep wine colour for me. The second one is my everyday Lancome lipstick in "perfect kiss" It is a dark mauve colour (a good kylie Jenner dupe in my opinion!) I have been wearing it almost every day! 

When I can paint my nails, this is my go-to look for this time of year! I paint all my nails in the Sally Hansen "Ruby Do" and then my ring fingers in the Sally Hansen "Golden Rule" 

I live in fuzzy socks all winter long! I wear them at home and even over my regular socks when I am going out to stay extra warm while waiting around for buses at uni. anddddd I love leg warmers, they just look cute with boots and sweaters :) 

I love big loop scarves in the winter and this one is from Aldo with the matching maroon gloves that let you use your smartphone while still wearing gloves. Best. Invention. Ever! 

Let me know what you guys use all winter long! Hope you guys enjoyed and Stay warm xox 

Saturday, 6 December 2014

How To: Study/My Tips


       It's that time of year again, while people are frantically shopping and children are singing in winter choirs.... university students are faced with finals. Since it is my fourth and final year of my undergrad, I have managed to pick up some tricks that really help me get through long study sessions and I would love to share them with you all. Remember we all have our own study habits so what works for me may not work for you, but feel free to share your tricks and suggestions in the comments! 

1. Coloured Pens and Highlighters  
                  These are a must to help me organize and seprate  not just each subject but each chapter or lecture within a subject. Helps my thoughts stay collected when I see them organized by colour. 

2. Sticky Notes
                 I like to make my 'to-do' lists on here for each day. I like to write what I hope to accomplish for that day. I also stick one of these on each page in my textbooks and summarize on that sticky note what that page just informed me of. Keeps you from highlighting in your textbooks and raises their re-sell value! 

3. Headphones 
                I don't know about you, but I have to listen to music while studying. (not reading, just note making) I couldn't include this in my photo but I have become obsessed with the website 8tracks which is an infinite music playlist website that suggests to you mixes of music that users have put together and you choose your genre. For studying I always click on 'sleepy, studying, relaxed, chill, calm, weed (don't judge me), and love' I have learned about so many underrated artists and songs through this website! I love it!! 

4. Glasses 
              I try to avoid contacts during studying because starring at pages and/or screens for several hours can dry out my contacts super quick and it makes me uncomfortable, and helps me keep my eyes open! 

5. Flash Cards 
               Many hate these cards but I learn better when I write stuff down, I like to spend the day before my exam quizzing myself over and over again using the cards I just made. Only make these when you are studying several days in advance. If you're cramming the night before they will waste your time. 

6. Chips 
              I don't have a good reason to include these guys... other than I love chips and they make me happy and when you're happy your brain is more likely to function properly :) #justified 

7. Tea 
              I've been drinking coffee more these days (I barely used to drink it) but I become so jittery and my heart races so fast whenever I do drink it, so I prefer to stick to my tea, especially peppermint tea. The peppermint is calming (and we are never calm during finals) and if you are like me and become super nauseous when stressed, peppermint helps get rid of nausea. 

8. Fruit & Trailmix 
              I have to eat while studying, and as much as I love chips, they do make me feel bloated when I eat them too much so snacking on veggies or fruits is the way to go, I usually like clementines or apples (but we currently only have bananas.... not my fav) and my mom has made me obsessed with trail mix. Salty and Sweet in one handful.. you can't beat that. However, at the moment I only have the middle-eastern version of trail mix a.k.a no fruit....just nuts. 

10. Portable Tooth-brush 
               Finally, a tooth brush. I am obsessed with brushing my teeth after everything I eat, I carry a mini toothbrush and toothpaste everywhere with me. Brushing my teeth really wakes me up and helps me feel re-charged and re-freshed. Give it a try and you'll see what I mean ;) 

**I hope some of you found these tips helpful, maybe you use them already or have some of your own, feel free to share as always :) 

Thursday, 4 December 2014

Safe Haven.

*blows the dust off my blog* 

           Hello, everyone. This feels a little strange writing on my blog again. I have been away from my blog for about 3 months and here I am again writing a blog post for the first time since September. I wanted to write this because I feel like I have an explanation to make, mostly for myself. 
          When I started my blog over a year ago, I was so excited. For anyone who really knows who I am, they would know that I am that person that has two personalities. I have always had this side to me that desired great things for myself, but my other side was always too shy and intimidated to let that part of me shine. I have this part of me that loves the internet, I love expressing myself on here because my other side does not like to express herself to people in real-life. I have been this way for so long, probably since I was 13. I started this blog to finally start expressing this loud, outspoken and creative side of me. But I still didn't want anyone to know about it. This blog was my safe haven. It was my escape from the real world to be and do everything that I love (hence my blog name) Recently, my blog has no longer become my safe haven. With every word and post I make on here, someone that knows me in person will see this. Honestly, that scared me. Most of all it genuinely upset me. I felt like I have taken 5 steps back. It got to the point where I could no longer bring myself to even type "blogger" in my search engine. I literally have not been on my blog at all for nearly 3 months. 
         Well, I have sat myself down and thought... "what's the solution here Lena?" I could start a whole new blog and start all over again but then what? I do not want to start a new blog. I didn't want to because this blog feels like home. I realized the solution here was to fix my flaw. Which is to start accepting this side of me and start to embrace it and show it to everyone who knows me. That is what I have been afraid of all along, That is why I wanted to keep my blog to myself. Perhaps I am a little crazy for feeling this way but maybe someone out there can relate. So you know what? I'm going to write on here again, make posts about anything I want and I will not care about who reads it. This blog will always be my safe place but now, I'm just going to start letting people become a part of it too.  

**For anyone who is still here to read this, thank you for making me love this and for being a part of the reason why I can't leave this blog. The support I have received on my previous posts from you amazing ladies is what makes me love this so much. 


Monday, 1 September 2014

Family. Love & Bliss : My Summer Video

I'll let the video do the explaining, but I want to say thank you to every person that did and did not make it into this video (although I doubt very many of them may see this) You have made my summer a relaxing, blissful and full-of-laughter summer. I took my small camera (and  iphone camera) everywhere with me this summer and tried to capture little snippets of my moments with the people I love. Like I said some of my best times didn't make it into the video, but I wanted to share this little project that I have spent all summer working on with everyone.
Enjoy xx. 

           p.s excuse my horrible editing skills... I'm new to this lol.