Hey, so we decided to pay a visit to The Green Planet in Dubai and let me tell you it was a pleasant experience for us and the kids. The whole feeling of being inside a rainforest is a relief after being in a country that spends half of the year in moisture drenched heat. Seeing the greenery and hearing the chirping of birds and parrots was something that made us smile. Here’s a look at what it looks like inside. A massive tree that houses unique birds from all over the world.
We witnessed some amazing birds from around the world that flew around freely undisturbed and weren’t even scared to be closeby. The kids were happy and fascinated at the same time. You could see some of the world’s unique insects and learn about them from the staff. They were friendly and answered all the questions we asked them. The whole setup is on 4 different floors and you walk down as you encounter each floor with special facts about these insects and birds. The place is sprayed with mist at different levels to give you a cool rainforest type of fell. There’s even a small suspension bridge. On the way out you can view some of the photo’s that were taken while you were inside and have the option to purchase the same at 115 AED each. A bit pricy I felt for I was able to take a better photo myself 🙂
Overall was a nice experience and worth paying a trip to. Don’t forget to take a picture with the snake 🙂
Recently I was going through some old pictures on my PC and I realised most of the pictures were either of my kids or my kids with their dad. And so I stepped back and wondered ? Where am I in these ? The fact that I was the one who clicked 99% percent of the photographs meant I was absent in all of them. I basically had barely any memories with my kids. This is sad ! I don’t know if this happens to a lot of you but mothers hardly have any memories with their kids because they are the one who keep trying to photograph them or capture memories. I keep chasing my husband to take a few pics but he’s either busy or ends up taking such a bad blurry photo that I just stop asking him.
Time is flying and before you know it these tiny footsteps you see in your home will become adults and what will be left will be only memories of their childhood. Don’t let these moments pass by. My advise : push your husband , friend or anybody around and get a few pics with you in them as well. Mother’s put in so much hard work in raising kids and I think you deserve to make some memories eternal with your kids so that when they grow up they can look back and remember those moments too. Here are some tips on what you can do to ensure you are able to do this.
Hire a lifestyle photographer
Don’t get a photogapher who will make you pose and take those fake smile photographs. Hire a photographer who can come home and capture you naturally with your kids doing daily tasks cause these are the real moments you’d want to look back and remember ( If you need recommendations on one as me )
2. Get a Tripod stand and an Iphone holder
Recently I got this holder for my iPhone which allows it to be mounted on a tripod. It costs hardly 100 AED and you can get it from any camera store. I switch on my video on the phone and jump on the bed with the kids and play. This way I’m able to have some videos with my kids without the need of asking someone else to capture them
3. Take more selfies
Well you know this is the selfie craze era !! So go ahead and take selfies with your kids as often as you can. Make funny faces , giggle and let the child in you come to life. Take more selfies and cherish these moments later
4. Get the Daddy to work on a weekend for you
Give a long emotional lecture to daddy dearest on how you feel unwanted and unloved and emotionally blackmail him into taking photographs of you and the kids on a weekend. Make him a nice cup of coffee or simply complement on how smart he is and see the magic work. Hand him the iPhone and let him click away
5. Get your friends/family to gift you a photography session
Instead of getting unwanted makeup / shirts/gifts for your birthday give a hint to your friends and family to gift you a photograph session with a lifestyle photographer. You can use that to capture some great memories with your kids and family instead of having a clutter of unwanted gifts in your home.
They say as you age you tend to withdraw from the world and confine yourself to a smaller circle and start enjoying your moments of solitude. You start realising and accepting with grace what is wrong and right and what is more meaningful. You start valuing your time more than before and most of all you start enjoying moments you spend with yourself contemplating life and all that could have been. You realise how people matter more than things. How things you once held onto so tight are now in dire need to be set free. How slowly you can now see wisdom in things you could not achieve in your life. How loss now seems like victory. How once that felt failure now seems a sense of achivement.
When I look at my kids I sometimes want to teach them all that I have learnt. I want to give them all the lessons I have learnt in a nutshell but than reality dawns upon me that somethings are only meant to be learnt through the passage of time and by the bumps and rides of experiences. I want to tell them how some things will seem so important in life at one point and how at another you will realise it was for your best they were not supposed to be with you. I want to tell them how heartbreaks will only make you stronger till you end up with the right person meant for you. I want to tell them to cherish the little joys of life like a rainy sunday afternoon or a simple full mouthed laugh that sprouts from a happy heart. I want them to live each moment knowing it will not last whether happy or sad. Valuing whats given to you is an art I want them to master.
I sit and I comtemplate now. I love my company. All my life I yearned and sought people, things , moments, achievements while today what I value most is the time I spend with myself relflecting on my inner self and my perception of life. Its funny for somepeople. They ask me “how can you enjoy being on your own?” I laugh and reply “how can you enjoy being with those who don’t even know you” . Nobody knows me better than myself. I am the sole bearer and witness of whatever happened in my life. I felt it, i fought it and I survived it. Nobody will know the pain, the struggle and the joy life brought along its path better than me. We live in a world full of people yet there might be just one or maybe none who can be exactly like you.
Not all who age gather wisdom. Don’t waste your time in conquest of what will not last. Make your moments real by adding pearls of wisdom to them. Accept age with grace. Accept the divine power of the unknown and let go. Enjoy being with yourself instead of chasing those who add nothing to you. And if you find a lady sitting at the far end of a coffee shop smiling to herself and scribbling on her notebook, that’s probably me. Come grab a coffee and lets sort out this thing called “life” 🙂
I think all mother’s can relate to the picture on the cover page of this book. I’ve gone through this maybe a zillion times myself where’d I’d chase my husband like a dominating witch asking him to focus while he fed the kids and he on the other hand felt overwhelmed and criticized despite trying to help after we had kids. This book is written by Jancee Dunn, a journalist, who enjoyed a happy life with her husband until her daughter arrived and the contentment soon started getting strained. Festered with resentment over whose turn was it to do what tasks for the baby whether it be changing the diaper or feeding the child, the serene jovial home soon started fostering grudges and agitations. When the pressure escalated she embarked on a journey to improve her marriage in various ways including seeing therapists, doing research and meeting other experts. All her efforts gave birth to the book above which is written in a straightforward humorous way sharing moments of being a wife and mother along with advise for other’s who go through the same.
Every woman who has had a child must have faced this moment of resentment towards her husband at some given point in time and you would seriously be lying if you said ‘no never’. I mean when he’d walk in home from office and you’re covered head to toe in burped milk and smelly poopies, pureed food and look very much like an ugly mommy monster and you get the question “So what did you do all day ? ” don’t you just wanna splash that baby food all over his face. This resentment just grows with time and starts tampering your marriage. Best part is every couple faces this and every person goes through this phase in life yet when you’re going through it, it feels your’e the only one. Don’t despair and hence whether you have children or not have a read at this book and take some marvelous advise for your home and marriage and let me know if you liked it too. It’s not easy but it’s not the end of the world either. It’s always good to read , share and talk to other’s about such situations I guess.
So I headed over to Modesh World today as I’ve seen the little yellow Modesh man so many times but never really knew what it’s all about. With the scorching sun these days most mums are on the lookout for new places they can relieve their kids of the pent up energy. Modesh World is an indoor play park for kids in the halls near to the Dubai World Trade Centre.
I Thought I’d share my experience with you incase anybody is thinking of visiting the place in the summer. When you arrive near the world trade center halls you need to park at the multi story car park near the convention tower and than take the lift to level one which takes you to the halls access. You can enter from Hall number 6 which is just a 5 minute walk after you park. Please note that the parking is charged at 5 Aed per hour. At the entrance of hall number 6 you need to pay 20 AED per head to enter the halls. ONLY children under 3 go free rest everybody needs an entrance ticket including adults. Also you would need to get a Modhesh card which is for 3 AED and can be topped up with cash to use on the rides inside. ( A little pricy don’t you think ? )
Ok so once you’re inside you’ll see a huge open area filled with rides and activities. Most of the games are electronic. Right in front of you will be a stage where they have live performances happening every hour to entertain the kids
If you walk further you shall be connected to hall number 6 where all the amusing rides are. Each ride costs around 10-20 Aed on average. ( Most of them are 20 AED ) You have bumper cars, flying cars, trampolines, soft play areas etc. The range is quite diverse so it does cater to all age groups. There isn’t any waiting so you can take the little one’s to any ride you wish. I had my four year old daughter with me and she could ride most of the one’s there. There was a dragon’s ship, electronic bikes, trains and much more. Right at the end of the halls is the FoodPark where you can sit and eat with your little one’s. If you have been to the food truck events at Dubai before you will recognize most of the food outlets. Theres also a large screen playing cartoons near to the food arena so the kids can watch a movie while you eat. If you have a budget of approx 150-200 to spare per child you can spend around 3 hours inside easily.
Overall it was fun and a different experience because of the huge area and variety of rides and a good getaway from the sun however a little pricy as well. So keep your budget in mind when you go. Below are a few pictures to give you more of an idea on the place from inside.
There is wisdom in less. Having less, saying less and owning less. A sea cannot drown you if he wills and shallow waters can devour you. All the goodness in the world is erased with one sin while all the evils submerge and bend to a single good deed. There is no scale of measure for good and bad. Its what leaves a mark on your heart and on your soul that matters. There is wisdom in knowing less. The ignorant mind questions less and is slave to his lord. The most intelligent mind becomes a slave to his own logic. He becomes slave to his own mind while the ignorant is slave to his creator. In the end who is trapped and who is free? Who gains peace and who wanders in lust of answers? That is that matters. That is all that is. A mere creation of filthy clay that perishes to dust in no time. Don’t think less but be less than who you are. A begger in filthy clothes is bigger than you. The measure is only the Lord’s eyes ; which you cannot see. So remember , there is wisdom in knowing less and being less. There is wisdom in things you cannot comprehend. Leave it to him.
So a few week’s ago my husband started lecturing me on how we need to de-clutter our lives of all the extra stuff at home and get rid of most of the things we are not consuming in the last six months. I listened with open ears but when I thought of parting from all that stuff I had acquired and collected from the past six years of our marriage it made me uneasy. I mean I know I’m not using those colorful notebooks I bought 5 years ago cause they looked cute and pretty, and those crafting items I bought just cause they look so adorable organized in my drawer, and yes I love my collection of stationary even if I’m not using it. I mean what if my daughter needs it when she starts university. ( she is 4 years old at the moment ) I can’t let go of those pots and pans and serving platters just incase we decide to throw a big party and than I won’t be prepared. ( Kya pata zuroorat par jaayay ) I definitely can’t let go of my old shirts just cause I don’t fit in them anymore. I mean I have promised myself to lose weight for the 100th time and what if I just end up doing it this year. I’m a Desi, I have inherited the need to accumulate stuff over the years and letting go of it somehow feels letting go of my identity. Doesn’t it seem we Desi’s are somehow preparing for some kind of apocalypse over our lifetime collecting as much crap as we can in our homes. Ok so I’ll leave the whole chat about de-cluttering for another post but the verdict being that I agreed with him. I listened solemnly with interest and raved and chanted the next few days on how we need to have less stuff. I agreed and I made a promise and than……………………………………..DSS ( Dubai Summer Surprises ) happened.
I had promised myself I wont’ go to the mall and won’t let myself get tempted into buying anything cause we have all we need. So happens that my little munchkins at home drove me crazy on a regular mommy day and I had to get away to get a break AND I happened to step into a mall. Hey wait No I did not come for shopping. My intention was just to have coffee and leave. The minute I entered something just felt so right and suddenly all those lectures my husband had given me erased from my memory like someone just hit the ‘delete’ button. Gushes of cold wind blew across my face and a smile emerged on my face. I was not the ‘me’ I am at home. I am a human being 🙂 Like cinderella I could feel myself transform into this stylish fashion icon wearing every single thing I could see in the windows from the far distance. My untidy messed up hair were suddenly short and blowdried with streaks of ombre. My ‘maasi’ get over in which I had reached the mall in a frustrated annoyed state of mind felt being transformed into this awesome ‘look’ which made me seem nothing less than “Scarlett Johnson’ in my head. Visions of the “mommy me” at home disappeared in a poof. And than I saw the “75% Off!” signs and somehow it seemed like shopping will make me richer. As if walking out of this mall I’ll have 75% more than what I had when I walked in. You know there’s something about buying discounted stuff. Doesn’t it give you an adrenaline rush? I started by visiting the kids stores and started buying some tops for my daughter. Justification being “She’s growing up so fast she needs a bigger size for sure”. Found some lovely tops at Mothercare and The Children’s place. Shirts, skirts, slippers I got whatever looked like a good deal. I also found some amazing T shirts for my little boy at Okaidi . I moved on from one store to another and got myself two pairs of shoes within minutes. I than happened to wander into the Levis store which was having a wonderful 40% off sale. You have to check it out! I got myself two pairs of denims too. So here I was with my hands full and hurting by now holding all those shopping bags. But Boy did I feel good! As excited as a 3 year old is after buying a toy I could not stop smiling. ( You can imagine me now peeking from behind the shopping bags like a kid with a new toy )
When I reached home parked my car and walked towards my apartment my husband’s lecture started coming back to me like a long forgotten song that echoes back when you visit a familiar place. “Its all coming back to me now” by Celine Dion started playing in the background. I looked at the massive shopping bags I was carrying and said a ‘O ooo” just like my son does when he spills something on the floor. Here I was doing just the opposite of ‘de-cluttering’. “It’s not my fault” I thought. Its the sales ! They drove me nuts and so did the kids . If they hadn’t gotten me so angry I wouldn’t have gone to the mall. What’s done is done and no point crying over spilt milk so I rushed upstairs to my home and hid all the stuff in the closet giving it a hard push as there was hardly any space left in it to stuff anything. It seemed like something inside was gonna blow up very soon. Hours passed and the evening sun set. My husband came home from work and walked to our room to change. By now I had forgotten the morning shopping episode and a ‘happy version of me’ was dancing and welcoming him. (With my lovely ‘mommy memory’ remembering anything is a task these days ) He opened the closet door and here fell on his face all these tons of shopping bags I had hidden away. Oooooooops! I’m sure I don’t need to tell you what he looked like after that happened. The next few hours there was silence in the home.
My advise to you ? Do go shopping cause there are some awesome deals out there in malls right now. Be careful not to hide it in your husband’s closet by mistake ( Like I did ). If by chance you do end up buying a lot of stuff make sure you go on a ‘de-clutterring’ mission next week to please your man. That’s exactly what I’m going to do. If you are depressed, sad or feeling crazy please do not waste your money on a psychologist. Just go shopping !! It’s an inexpensive way to fix part of your crazy brain. While you go and shop let me go ahead and get rid of some of the old stuff lying in my home before my Mr. throws me out along with it.
My day started with the fragrance of a soiled diaper on my face. My little boy made sure he just came at a perfect angle so as not to squish my nose and sat right on top of me putting his back towards my face. I woke up with a startle when he started to jump. Right than I was dreaming of driving a BMW z4 in Switzerland along the highway when I closed my car windows after the smell started seeping in. When I opened my eyes I see a diaper squashed across my face and him jumping on top of me as if I were a trampoline. LOL What a lovely start to my day ? As I woke up and started my usual chores of giving my little two breakfast and dressing them up my daughter started begging me to go and watch the movie “Cars” which released last week. I was tired exhausted but after 2 hours of begging, manipulation and brain eating – I finally agreed.
So I dragged myself to comb my hair with my fingers ( sorry using a brush is very rare when you have two naughty kids ) as perfectly as I could, put my toddler to sleep and dragged myself and my daughter over to Reel cinemas. When I bought the tickets I verified 20 times asking her “Do you want to eat something? “ and “No!” was the answer I got. So we grabbed our seats and I thought this was my time to take a nap or probably stare into my mobile and have some me time while she watches the movie. I smiled looking forward to having a nice quiet time. Not less than fifteen minutes passed and she started nudging at my shirt “Mama Mama … Im hungry”. I look at her in disbelief . “But I just asked you if you want something”. “I know mama but I am hungry NOW, I was not hungry THAN”. So I pull myself together take her outside and buy her some popcorn and a bottle of water. We rush back and grab our seats ensuring not to disturb anybody in the cinema. I sigh with relief as I pick up my mobile and think that my ‘me time’ has finally started. In fifteen minutes I feel her nudging at me again. “Mama Mama I need to go peepee” . ( You must be kidding me !!! ) “Can’t you wait ?? ““No I need to go NOW!!”. I fumble and get up once again and crawl through the seats to go out and take her to the washroom. Once in the washroom I’m staring at the watch waiting
“Are you done?”
“Not yet mama”. Five minutes have passed.
“Are you done?”
“No mama… But mama … mama…why is tissue paper white over here” as she points to the toilet roll”.
“aaa… Cause it’s supposed to be like that”
“But mama why ?”
“because white is everybody’s favourite color”
“but why is red not their favourite”
“i dont know beta go ask them”
“ok mama I want to go ask them we will watch movie later”
“No! We need to watch the movie , hurry up beta”
So I pick her up in my lap once she’s done sneak back into the cinema already tired by now and hoping she will now relax. I close my eyes take a deep breath and sigh with relief.
” aaa mama?” she whispers pulling at my shirt. In my mind I am pulling my own hair by now.
“But mama…but mama i dont like this movie ..its boring”
“but you have been begging me since a week you want to watch it. I rushed out without having breakfast just so you could watch it in time”
” i know but it’s boring now please can i go home”.
After fifteen minutes of argument I was hushed by the people sitting at the back and told to be silent. From the look on my daughter’s face I knew this request would soon transform into a tantrum so I grabbed her hand and walked out of the cinema ignoring the stares I was getting. Well that was my experience of the movie “Cars”. I wanted to give you a review but sorry I don’t remember anything from the movie other than the picture I clicked. ( above ) If anybody does get a chance to watch it like a normal human being do let me know how it was 🙂 hehehe Sorry that’s all for now.