29 October 2014

Chapter 7 - Unwanted Jewel

1991
A few months earlier~~

Never in her life did Adeela feel so blessed.  Her dream was coming true and her beloved teacher was behind this miracle.  Mrs. Gomez was taking care of all finances for her F1 visa which was giving Adeela the unexpected opportunity to finally study in America and more importantly, see her mother.  The last time she had talked to her mother was a few months back.  Adeela was the one who called her from a telephone office and luckily she got hold of her mother on the second try.  “Adeela! Is it you ma??? I am so sorry we were not able to reach you for a while…” her mother began with a tone of guilt, while the screams and cheers of a toddler filled the background.  “Sorry dear, that’s Maisha, she gets excited when I talk on the phone”  But Adeela already had a limited time in the telephone shop with a dozen men waiting behind her to use the telephone, she had to make it quick.  “I can’t wait to see my little sister!”
She took in a deep breath…
“Ma! I am coming to you! I’m coming!  I got the visa Ma!” Adeela was so excited just to break it up to her that she burst into tears again before her mother could even say anything.  She had told her mother about this situation after she was done with school.  The line was silent for a few seconds..”Ma are you there???  Did you hear?” She heard sniffing and a soft graceful voice break down and what sounded like a bangali dramatic cry of joy had followed up.  “Oh Allhamdulillah! My baby! Oh I am so happy Adee you have no idea! God had sent an angel with you Adee Oh my baby! Your teacher is an angel send from heaven I am so happy my Adee! When are you coming?”
The conversation was one of the best most joyful talks they ever had in their life and everything went well until Adeela finally asked about Jafir, her step-father. All of the sudden Adeela’s mother’s tone weakened and a sense of fear emerged in her voice.  She felt it from her mother even in an unclear telephone that was about to cut off any minute.  The last thing she heard from her mother was, “Don’t worry, there won’t be any problem.  Everything should be fine.”
Adeela sensed hesitance again before the line cut off.  She came back to reality.  Horns honking, riskshaw bells jingling and babytaxis brumming all at once.  Her getting out of the small conjusted shop surrounded by way too many smelly men, all tired, busy, complaining about something.  An indian tune playing at a nearby audioshop, people cursing, yelling, laughing, beggars begging, women calling out taxis and rickshaws, bargaining.  Adeela was surely going to America, but what where was she going now?  She just realized that she has no home here in her motherland.  Nobody is willing to accept her.  Her father’s family lost contact with her after her mother’s marriage.  Her aunt kicked her out of the house and practically disowned her after what Adeela’s own cousin tried to assault her, and her friend was away, married.  She was all alone.  Going back to her hostel she thought, was she putting her mother into more trouble?  What if her step-father didn’t want her to come? He hardly talked to her anyway.  So many thoughts went through her 16-year-old mind.  She heard a familiar voice by the busy noisy street calling her.
“Apa!”
She turned behind and her face lit up and she forgot about all the problems she ever had. “You! What a pleasant surprise!”  It was the old rickshawwala.  The old man she bought sandals to.  He still wore the same sandals.  It had been 2 years.  She was relieved to see that he was still the same with his rickshaw and bata sandals.  His small towel wrapped around his hat and grey beard, and not to forget the sincerest smile in the world. 
“Please don’t call me Apa! I am so much younger than you. Why so formal?” She asked with a smile.
“You are my granddaughter’s age Adeela ma,” he grinned.
Adeela smiled back.
“Guess where I am going?” She boasted proudly like a kid, “America!”
“Emerikaaa!” The rickshawala exclaimed. “I heard there is people of all color there.  And the clouds fall on the land. Like heaven!”
Adeela giggled, “You mean snow?????”
The rickshawwala gave her a ride to her hostel and he wished her all the luck. 
“I am a poor man, I am not able to give you anything ma, but I will pray for you.  My dua for you will always be present. You might forget me eh..”

Adeela’s eyes filled with tears. She would never forget him. That was the last time she ever saw him. 

28 October 2014

Chocolate mousse trio recipe

Ingredients:                                                            
Tastes better than it looks!  A light treat for chocolate lovers.  
-3 cups heavy cream
-50g milk chocolate
-50g white chocolate
-50g butter
-2 tbspn cocoa powder
-3 tbspn sugar
-1  tspn vanilla powder/sugar
-3 eggs
-1tblspn flour
-pinch of salt

for inner chocolate sauce:
-1tbspn cocoa
-50g butter
-3tbsp sugar
-milk half cup

For garnishing:
-fresh strawberries
-dark cooking chocolate
-cocoa powder

Layer #1 (bottom dark chocolate cake layer)
-wisp the eggs until light and almost fluffy and add sugar, and vanilla sugar
-melt the butter and let it cool slightly
-meanwhile add cocoa and flour to the egg sugar mixture
-lastly pour in the melted butter slowly while mixing
-bake it in the oven (preheated to 175C) for 5 to 10min (depending on the size of your baking pan)
-take it out and let it cool for 10minutes
-shape it as a circle by using a small plate

rich inner chocolatey sauce layer
-simply heat up all the ingredients together in a small pan and mix vigurously in medium heat until it thickens.  Pour over thin layer of bottom cake.

Layer #2 (milk chocolate mousse)
-place a large bowl over a heated pan of simmering water on the stove and slowly heat the butter cubes, milk chocolate pieces and sugar.  Once everything melts immediately take off the bowl from the pan and let it cool slightly.
-wisk a bowl of heavy cream until it has sharp peeks and add a tbspn sugar while wisking.
-seperate the whipping cream into 2 halves
-slowly pour in the chocolate mixture little by little into one of the halves of cream and fold gently to get all air and chocolate in.
-refrigerate for 2min

Layer #3 top layer (white chocolate mousse)
-melt the white chocolate blocks, butter and sugar together by using the same method as milk chocolate mixture.  Mix the chocolate with cream the same way and refrigerate that for 2min as well.

Shaping:
-If you dont have a shaper to make your cake round it's fine.  I don't either!  Cut a long piece of aluminium foil and fold it to thicken it.  Make a circle out of it (the same shape as the bottom layer of cake) and put it on top of the bottom layer.
-Now pour in all your milk chocolate mousse and refrigerate it for a minute( meanwhile get the white chocolate mousse out to make sure it doesnt settle in before pouring)
-after one minute, pour in the white chocolate mousse, the last layer.

-let this refrigerate for an 30min to an hour

Garnishing:
-slice up strawberries that are not too soft or watery
-slowly melt some dark chocolate  blocks on aluminium foil and once it's flattened, refrigerate it for 30min or until it hardens so you can break the flat chocolates and decorate your cake
-drizzle some cocoa powder on top of your mousse cake

The result? Heavenly triple chocolate mousse cake!



22 October 2014

BIG FAT U TURN - farewell to nursing

I have to cancel almsot everything I had planned for my future career because it just won't work out. All my life I was aiming for something in the field of science, but in every step of my way something always knocked me down and that something was always a sign that this field was never for me.  Me and science were just never meant to be.  It sounds like a line from a pathetic song but this is the truth.  I just realized it so late in my life! Science and I were never meant to be!  Because you know what? If we were, I would have been making a living reasearching, or making vaccines, or just treating people.  As cool as all that sounds it just won't ever work out for me so I open my options and think about what would suit me best.  

I am a goal oriented woman and I want to always be there for my family.  I have a wonderful little family and I hope to someday make it even bigger.  If that's the case, then I have to be supermom and find a career that will give me enough income with lovely office hours so when I get done from work I get to see my lovely husband and amazing children and spend as much time with them as possible.  In 3 months that is!


03 September 2014

The Story of Tani...(in short)

Once upon a time, in a stormy day in the flooded capital city of Bangladesh, a girl was born.  Her name was Tanjina.

The seasons passed and baby Tanjina started crawling...talking...walking..and at 2 years of age, her mommy and daddy took her some place far far away for a better future. America.
Although she was Bangladeshi by blood, her heart always embraced the USA as her real home.  She was the sweet quiet little girl down south who loved to draw and dance.

The older she grew the more she wondered what her purpose in life was.  Many career days in school had passed and finally one afternoon, she figured out her future.  All thanks to a chubby cute little lady who came as a guest speaker in Tanjina's 8th grade classroom.  "Every time I do it, I fall in love with my job again. Because you see the miracle in front of you."  That was all that lady had to say.

High school, you know gow overrated it can be.  The course overload, homework over the long weekends, summer vacation even, homecoming drama, football, SATs, college applicarions, provacative appearances, those popular crowds....oh the distractions....they just made boring Tanjina overwhelmed.  She was ready to get out of that chaos and start her life all over again.  She was going to represent her true personality in college, with her dreams of becoming a doctor.

Yes, you heard right. Her friends were going to be doctors.  She apparently loved biology.  So why not give it a shot?

Tanjina shot...and missed...shot again, and missed...started losing hope...even changed majors last minute to business, and missed big time.  She discovered how much she despised business.  She went back to her comfort courses in science...still confused as hell about her career when all of a sudden, prince charming knocked on her door....and she opened it...and yes he did come from far far away...and so they got married and lived happily....in Sweden. Score.

Except for the times when she thought about her dream of doing something for people...working...getting paid and finally making her dreams come true.  She felt lonely...missed hee family and friends...missed home...even missed Bangladesh, her other home.  She struggled learning swedish.  She started having identity crisis. It was high school all over again, she thought.  All those years ahe transformed from a quiet shy little nerd to a smart outgoing ok looking girl was for nothing.  She was back to being short, quiet, shy, stupid....and confused.  She experienced something new, in this new life of hers.  She experienced failure.  Lots of differenr kinds.  No matter how she failed, however, her husband was always by her side, encouraging her.

This gave her strength and shefinally fueled up for change.  That was when the words in her head were clear..."Because you see the miracle in front of you.."  Tanjina was going to become a mother.  She went through a tough pregnancy her first trimester and experienced her stay in the lonely hospital bed for several nights.  All she could do was watch disney songs and think of her little miracle.  "Get yourself together Tani.  You have to stand by yourself...nobody else does that for you" she told herself.

Tanjina finally admited all she ever wanted to do was give birth to babies.  She wanted to be a midwife.  She was ready to start even with a baby bump.
She was not going to give up!

2013 May, her baby boy was born and all she could think of was the magical moment when a baby comes into this world.  Amazing.  That is how we all came here.  Just amazing.

Tanjina will try her very best to become a wonderful midwife...she is almost there....

To be continued...

14 August 2014

Art of the Day - Home away from home...away from home

Yes I did!I made a fake canvas with sketching paper and ducktaped it to the wall.  It looks surprisingly professional. Cost was free. Materials were paper, pencil, scissors, tape and a creative mind.

I just wanted to express my life in a simple black and white picture...well 2.

You see a long bridge that I scribbled.  A bamboo bridge that transforms into metal along the way to the new countries.  The left picture starts with Bangladesh, my motherland, hence the Sriti shodh and bamboo.  Far ahead are familiar skyscrapers in the USA, the place I grew up in and called home.  Near to the front on the 2nd picture are smaller buildings,old fashioned buildings which are churches, offices, and apartments by the water.  This is Sweden, the place my real journey began.  Now this is my home.  i believe there is no permanent place for us in life. We should never get too attached because what you have now will not be with you tomorrow.  We are all travelers in this world.  At least I am...

05 November 2013

Feeding Your Baby (0 to 5months)

So Isaam is growing up way too fast and it is just adorable to see!  Daddy is bringing him new toys every week and mommy keeps putting on bigger shirt sizes on mr. cutie.  Some updates with my son:

-He is now 5 months woohoo!
-Isaam has so far gotten sick 3 times.  2 Fevers and the common cold.  I handled it pretty well.
-He got his 2nd vaccination shots and he is finally getting his energy back after 2 days of mild fever.
-He loves laying on his tummy and watching disney songs.  He struggles to crawl and he can sit with some support.
-Isaam has  discovered his feet and all he does when he lays down is curl up like a ball and bite his feet.  No more sucking hands, it's all about feet now.
-Isaam got his new bed, but he still sleeps with mommy and daddy.
-he has been introduced to mild cereal and potatoes and plum puree.  I feed him 2 tsp with 90ml formula milk.
-After he is done eating I pour in 2 to 3 oz of formula milk and continue feeding him by spoon (since he hates the bottle!).
-he loves water and his vit. D
-he naps for 30min 3 times a day, and sleeps through the night (almost)...feeding him 2 times at night
-he still wants breastmilk like every 2hours... as long as he is getting enough! Nowadays hes so distracted whenever im feeding. Oh, and he just loves looking at us when we are eating!

I am seriously worried about his growth.  The ped said everything is fine but I wonder how things will be when I have low breastmilk supply, since he hates the bottle.  Hope things go fine!