Saturday, March 22, 2014

Flavour Of The Day With Noora

Mother's Day Glory 

As my three year old is in Nursery level 2, he has become aware of what Mother's Day is. With a party at the nursery and then more explanation from his baba , Yousef has successfully grasped the concept.

And since it is the first year I feel his awareness, it made my day to get attention for him for the sake of wanting to make me feel special.

In the past year of being a mama, so much has happened. My daughter took her first steps, my son went up a grade, my step daughter changed schools, I went back to working from the office, and I have made mama friends which I never had before. The thing that struck me most however,was how attached a mama gets to the life her and baba have and still are creating for their family.

At a single thought or worry that something might disturb the harmony, a mama's heart sinks and races, while her brain springs to action. The need to protect and shelter is innate. It is progrmmed in our genetic making and it is surely sensed by every child we care for. 

That, with every Mother's Day over the past three years since becoming a mama, has grown stonger and stronger just as it has for every other mama.

So, we can have careers bigger than ever, we can rule countries if we wish, we might need to fight our way to getting what others get by default, but one thing is for sure, the look of trust, sense of security, and complete belonging we get from our young, and I hope older children, is the most precious look we will ever get! 

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Flavour Of The Day With Noora

An Objective Lens

In a book I am reading, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People,  Stephen Covey talks about our views and acceptance of our children, which in many cases prohibits our children from being all they can be.

Reflecting on this notion for the past two days, I have started to wonder, how many of us, truly accept our children for who they are. How many of us are satisfied with our children's achievements? How many of us tell our children that they are perfect just the way they are? And how many of us don't push our children to be "more of" something?

Acceptance, is by far, one of the hardest things to practice. It goes against our human instincts, I think, of always wanting "more" or "different". And with our innate desire to want the best for our children, it is easy to get lost in the practice and lose sight of what is in their best interest.

So I have put this challenge upon myself, I want to really get to know my children for what they are, and accept what I know is their best

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Flavour Of The Day With Noora

The Importance of Earth

On our website, we are asking you if you teach your children to care for the environment. While the poll is still ongoing, I hope the majority of the answers are yes.

I for one, are somewhat anxious about where our planet is headed. And I mean this not just in terms of pollution, but the respect humans have for animals.

A few months ago, I was visiting a zoo in a neighbouring country. And there, I was confronted with a chance to teach my kids one of the most valuable lessons they can learn: respecting all of god's creatures!

While my step daughter (9), son (3) and I were visiting the gorilla zone, we found a mother pushing her child (about 7) to throw a plastic bottle to the gorilla. While the son was hesitant, she reassured him that it would be ok, by throwing the gorilla a paper cup full of soda; which the gorilla was now eating!

Two minutes later, she was telling her other son (a teen) "splash the gorilla with water, let's see how he will react."And that is when I lost it; I opened my mouth and the only thing that came out were words of anger. The more I spoke, the more that woman tried to explain to me that he is "just a gorilla" and "could not possibly understand."

Meanwhile, my kids were watching and listening closely to every word I said, and while my conversation with the woman was leading nowhere, I decided to move on. But to my kids, I was right, and we spent the next 15 minutes talking about the importance of respecting animals and in turn, our environment.

What do you think? Visit and vote

Friday, March 7, 2014

Flavor Of The Day With Noora

A Tribute
On the occasion of International Women’s Day, I wish to recognise Hind-Lara Mango’s positive contribution to society as publisher and director 
of Jordan’s parenting magazines Family Flavours and Nakahat 'Ailiyeh. Nearly eight years ago, she founded the magazines to help empower families in the Middle East to live happy, healthy and fulfilling lives.

I’ve seen publishers who could care less about magazine content and quality as long as ads get sold. While Hind does throw the best marketing pitch I’ve ever seen, what makes me proud to work with her is her unwavering vision and staunch commitment to high standards 
of excellence.

Magazines locally and internationally subscribe to conventional notions of perfection, but Hind is all about breaking the mould. She meets with heads of companies and dines with ambassadors but directs the same energy to ensuring public sector representation in articles, that subscribers in Hashmi Shamali and Abdoun are given the same priority and that the fashion editor looks for bargains. Hind supported the cancer survivor who graced the cover bald and the father of three who opened up about his depression after being diagnosed with diabetes.

While magazines typically Photoshop images to erase wrinkles, bulges and scars, Hind promotes a culture that embraces diversity. When one fashion label expressed discontent over having their clothes worn by children with special needs in a photo shoot, Hind remained steadfast in championing people with disabilities as equals. She embraces her convictions rather than live by popular consensus.

Unlike many professionals who lack initiative, accountability and ownership (it’s always someone else’s job)Hind has an uncanny ability to convert mistakes into lessons and pressure into productivity. Despite the juggling act involved in owning a business and parenting four children, Hind keeps focused on the big picture (vision and strategy) while overseeing the details required to keep the team moving forward. She stays late with her team, washes her own mug in the office kitchen and acknowledges the creative outputs of others. And when we disagree, we do so with respect and move on.

This IWD, I encourage men and women everywhere to recognise a female mentor or role model who’s making a difference. Go see a female artist’s exhibit, attend an event promoting women’s health, donate to an organisation providing leadership opportunities for girls or simply watch a movie with strong female characters. Whatever you do, let it be an opportunity to celebrate the remarkable contributions of women!

Laura Haddad

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Flavour of the Day With Noora


While I always blame my husband for being too occupied with his phone, it slapped me right in the face the other day when I realized I am exactly the same when it comes to my kids, I am usually too occupied with my phone.
When we sit down to do some art, I am right there at the table with them, but in most cases flipping from one social media platform to another. Same goes for when we are watching TV, when I attend my son's football practice and the list just goes on and on!

I was so disappointed with myself when I realized that in that specific conversation, my 3 year-old had better communication skills than me, he was waiting for eye contact while I just answered with my head buried in the phone!

Technology has truly taken over!!  How does it make sense that I try to limit my kids' TV and tablet time, to encourage interaction when I myself am a bad role model!

The next time  you are with your kids, notice your tendency to grab your phone or tablet, you will be surprised!

Share your thoughts!