Home   |  Issues  |  The Daily Star Home | Volume 5, Issue 19, Tuesday, May 11, 2010



Dearest Diary,
Guess what? I blinked my diamante studded, heavily mascara-d left eye....and presto! It is the month of May 2010 already. What is happening guys? Is it just me, or is everybody else also feeling as if time has put on roller blades.

You know, I thought this year would be my year. I would lose some weight, go back to work, do some charity work, take some courses, basically do stuff which retired moms do. Come to think of it, I actually did lose a chin, taking a few odd classes here and there, and doing some orphanage stuff (which I apparently can't talk about because then it is not considered charity...as Lisa says...whatever) and, yes, did a small English course.

Okay, nothing major, but a start from my lazy ,comfortable world. So why am I feeling so lost and listless? Finally figured it out. It is that time of the year again. You know diary..9th May...Mothers day.

I know, I know, it is a Hallmark event, but I still love it. I love it because it is one more special day which says, I am a mom to my son. I loved the rituals of his hand made cards, which he got back from school. As he grew to be a teen, his hastily bought cards with his scribbles saying what a great mom I was, and now his hurried texts proclaiming how much he misses me works for me every time, diary. Anyway diary, the pace of time to me is frightening and at the same time exhilarating. Frightening, because at the rate senility is approaching me, my son might just have to take me up on my offer and put me to sleep and exhilarating because of how our children are growing into such lovely human beings.

When I look back and look into our handiwork, I feel so proud. We must have done something right. Let me backtrack a bit. Couple of months ago, me and most of my close friends were invited to a 23rd wedding anniversary of another pair of friends. As we all were sitting around a 'round' table, I sort of had an out-of-body experience.

I saw all my friends sitting next to each other, talking amongst themselves, and I just had this powerful surge of serene, complacent happiness.

I was so happy to realise that we share so much history together, and we love each other without any judgement, and that we share amongst us, our most precious beings - our children. And on that bright, starry night, once again we were in accordance with our friendship, by being sad.

Sad, because our children, who are now mini adults, all doing their own things in different parts of the world, are far away from us. But even in the midst of such sad-happiness, we were quite a bunch of proud moms.

Remember how we said we would never turn into our parents and talk and protract conversations about our children? SORRY! BEEP! BEEP! We are so them.

So to cut a long story short, I am declaring this year as "the return of the prodigal son". And why not? This year when I went to visit him, he greeted me, freshly bathed, shaved and smelling of febreeze, while a roast chicken was in the oven, which was later cling-wrapped to be put in the fridge, and asking what else would I like to be stocked up in the kitchen?

Quite a change from the previous years where I was once greeted by a snake in a glass box and one year the house resembled a recording studio and oh! I almost forgot...frozen rodents in the deep freezer for his pet...snake. Welcome to life, son.

Having said all this, I am also happy to let you know diary, that it is also getting time for them to return. One is about to get engaged, one is ready to join the father, one is just happy to come and give something back to the country, and one just wants to come back and sleep for a whole year before he starts anything. Whatever....just come back. I know I have something called the 'X' syndrome, but the empty nest syndrome is far worse.

Lastly, to sum up my dramatics, my son, as he was leaving, enveloped me in his huge bear hug and said, "Mom, you really should have had more children.”

So, moving along diary, how was your day?
Have a good day the Sam Q way!

Maple Syrup Cake
This Canadian-inspired cake is a treat, which my son loves. So go ahead moms. Make your children's day. Make them look forward to something in life.

1 whole butter
1 cup brown sugar
4 eggs
4 fl. ounce maple syrup
1½ cup sifted flour.
2 tsp baking powder
½ tsp cinnamon powder
2 ounce chapped walnuts (optional)
For the filling & topping:
450 ml cream (found in supermarkets in tetra packs)
2tbsp maple syrup

Preheat oven to 160C, 300F, Gas-2
Grease an 8-inch deep round cake tin. In a large bowl mix together all the ingredients for the cake, except for the nuts until well combined. Lastly stir in nuts. Spoon mixture into tin and level the surface.

Bake for 1-1 ½ hours, until well risen, golden & springy to touch. Leave to completely cool. To make filling & topping, whip the cream till it gets bit stiff, fold in syrup. Using sharp knife, slice cake horizontally into two & then fill and cover with cream smoothing it evenly on top and sides.
Keep chilled in fridge until ready to serve.


. . . for summer

While the season means cute sundresses, patterned cotton saris and outdoor picnics, it also means sunburnt skin and melting makeup. With that in mind, here are some quick fixes to those troubling summer nuisances-

Feel The Burn
Living in a country plagued by high temperatures, sunburn is a problem we regularly battle against. While the most obvious solution to the problem would be to avoid the sun altogether, we all know that's pretty much impossible! This is why these quick sun protection tips will come in handy.

If you are among those who burn easily, use a sun block with a SPF of 15 or greater. Apply the sun block at least 15 to 30 minutes before you venture out into the sun.

If you are still the victim of sunburned skin though, the solution is simple: soak small towels in milk and apply to the burnt area or simply apply plain yoghurt directly to the burnt area.

Melting Makeup
Heat creates havoc on makeup foundation melts, eyeliner smears and your clear skin becomes oily.

A guaranteed way to avoid melting makeup is to simply use less of it. Go easy on the foundation or switch from foundation to tinted moisturiser. Also try to limit the use of concealers.

Alternatively, you could switch to cream-based cosmetics as these stay on longer and do not clump on the skin like powder-based products do.

Makeup primer is also a must-have for keeping your makeup intact. The use of foundation primers to eye shadow primers can go a long way and prevent your makeup from melting into messy globs.

If all else fails, use blotting papers. These light tissue papers can blot away excess oil without messing the makeup. It is probably the most effective way to control oil during the day and the bonus is it can fit in your purse!

By Mahareen Khalid


LS editor's note

The thorny path of adulthood

We grownups lead difficult lives. Lives void of any innocence, bursting with discontent, teeming with responsibilities that we either willingly take up or simply choose to avoid. Opting for the latter then leads to a battle with guilt as the conscience comes with its clarion calls. If we choose to shoulder our duties, we crib by saying we have too much on our plates.

There is always this sense of a crisis looming overhead. We have many names and excuses for it: midlife adjustment, bipolar disorders, unresolved childhood issues. You face so many dilemmas too. Am I making enough money? Is that 'frenemy' of mine racing past me? Does that obnoxious colleague ride a bigger car than me? Is my wife prettier than his, is my husband cheating on me, and so on and so forth. The jittery nerves wreak havoc on our scruples. We live a lie or twist a truth so hard that it feels like a lie.

Why would you twitch inside if your wife chats with a friend online or adds that handsome old chum to her friend list; why would a harmless smile or greeting someone you see every morning in the park while doing your regular laps be a reason to make your wife feel threatened? Why would you waste time trying to buy off your boss by saying and doing things that you don't mean to? Why would you spoil your child and then not know how to put him back on track, why would you hide behind religion and do all those things forbidden by your faith?

There is no answer to all these queries. We are busy being mean to ourselves. We derive sadistic pleasure by beating our wives, by choking our husbands, by poisoning our workplaces, by cheating and ditching ethics, by letting our cores rot.

We resent all things happy and beautiful and willingly lead unhappy lives. We are so clouded by our wrongdoings, we don't even realise that happiness was just around the corner, waiting to be asked in, but we didn't empathise. We adults are fickle-minded and absolutely stupid; why else would we give in to doubt and mistrust and make our own lives miserable? One fails to fathom the twisted mind of a grown up.

- Raffat Binte Rashid

News Flash

Persona honours trainees

The certificate awarding ceremony of Persona Institute of Beauty and Lifestyle was held recently at the Bengal Art Gallery. A total of 85 trainees from the second to sixth batch of the institute, trained in different courses such as 'Beauty Culture', 'Haircut and Style" and other short courses received the diploma.

Kaniz Almas Khan, Principal, Persona Institute and eminent beauty expert Zerina Asgar, along with Geety Billah were present at the occasion. Eminent singer Rezwana Chowdhury Bonna graced the occasion as Chief Guest.






home | Issues | The Daily Star Home

2010 The Daily Star