3bt, blogging, desi, food, motherhood, recipes

Three Beautiful Things Thursday

One. Driving past a hole-in-the-wall strip mall on our way home the other day we nearly braked in the middle of the road as we saw a brand-new Afghani kebob house. I love Afghani food. Kebobs and rice or fresh tandoori naan with a side of chopped tomatoes and cucumbers and yogurt. We haven’t seen any before so were giddy about one opening so close to our house. We can take-out when guests come last minute, or when I’m too tired to cook! I checked yelp to see if any early adventurer had checked out the place, and was stopped short at the price. $$$. And- jacket required. Convinced there had to be a misunderstanding, perhaps an uncle who didn’t understand this whole yelping shelping business and pressed the wrong button, we headed out to check the menu and were greeted by a group of eager Afghani kids who apparently pooled their money for the next big thing- fine dining, Afghan style. Except, fancy table covers can’t justify $27 for Shami Kebob and $35 for a beef platter in a hole-in-the-wall strip mall in the burbs where fish tacos are frankly considered terribly exciting and exotic. I could be wrong. Maybe pricey Afghan food will work. Just not for us. We left feeling bummed and craving Afghan food more than ever. So I consulted Chef Google and searched to no avail for a tried-and-true recipe stumbling finally upon this- written entirely in Urdu. To my complete surprise, I read it. And made it. [with some twists of my own. I’m incapable of following a recipe to the tee- andaza se is just how I roll] The result? Delicious! I’m beside myself that I read Urdu, not a primer with pictures of yellow kittens on the borders, but a grown up recipe! I couldn’t help but just sort of drop it in there when I picked up fresh naans to eat it with at the local Indian restaurant.

B: What are you making?
Me: You know, it just kind of felt like an Afghan Kebab night.
B: What? You’re making Afghani kebabs? Wow.
Me: yeah, I found a recipe online, its in Urdu, but I mean, it was simple enough.

Ha. Yes. Like I read Ghalib on a regular basis and recite Iqbal when the mood strikes. Still, finding hidden abilities to read Urdu is gloat-worthy no? It’s a shame the recipe is only available in Urdu considering the dearth of good afghani kebab recipes. I’m considering possibly translating it here and doing a step-by-step if there is interest. Let me know if you are. If so, might be worth the effort.

Two. Waleed turns eleven months old today. I have marked each month. Celebrated with a cupcake. Recorded the milestones. Taken enough pictures to wallpaper my house inside and out- and yet I am not understanding where the time went. The day they placed him in my arms in the hospital, his first birthday felt like an elusive event occurring in a mythical land- I felt that once this first birthday came- I would be a sophisticated mama and my son? Why he’d be practically reciting Shakespeare for clapping dinner guests. And while we do still have a month to go- so anything could happen- I have a sneaking suspicion neither my sophistication nor his Shakespeare recited prose will be improving anytime soon. I realized I’m not alone in feeling this way as I came across Eve’s post where she felt the same thing with her eldest son:

. . . I had this sub-background voice…more like an assumption…that if I could get past the first year, then being a mom would get significantly easier.  Like, POOF, on his first birthday he would get a cake-messy face and I would get a magic wand with all the answers or something.

It’s good to know I’m not the only one who has felt this way- and sad to know no magic wand exists.  While I will save the thoughts about this past month for his monthly update, tonight I looked with wonder at my baby boy who in eleven months has gone from a tight-fisted helpless creature to a standing, crawling, hollering person. Its beautiful to see him reach each milestone and heartbreaking as you leave those long-awaited moments behind. I never knew it was possible to harbor two equally strong opposing emotions simultaneously until now. Loving him involves a sort of heartbreak that inexplicably leaves me happier than I ever knew I could be.

Three. Fruitful Fusion nominated me for an award. The Stylish Blogger Award! She’s awesome and I love her blogs and appreciate the shout out. And- I love all of you guys for reading and commenting. I was telling a fabulous blogger I recently began reading that many of my blogging compatriots when I first began are not blogging anymore- the average time for blogging apparently 2-3 years. So I’m excited to see a seventh anniversary coming up in May.  As I’ve mentioned before, to celebrate my son’s birthday and this blogoversary, I’m planning a fun give-away of things I like. They’re picked by me, bought by me, and there are no round-trip tickets to Paris. Sorry. But- if you read and enjoy this blog I’m pretty sure you’ll like what I’m giving away. As of now there are five things so more than one opportunity to win something. I’ll be sharing more about it later this month as the date for his birthday gets closer, but because I want to limit it to folks who read, regardless of whether you’re a new reader or not, to thank you, you can be eligible by clicking follow on the right for this blog, my writing blog, or linking to me at your own blog. All three gives three entries. Subject to tweaking as the date approaches to figure out how to include more people that may not be ‘follow-y link-y’ sorts but who read and give so much commenting-love nonetheless.

So in Sum: Seven years blogging. My son’s approaching birthday and hidden talents for Urdu literacy. A fabulous Thursday indeed. Hope you have a good Thursday too.

17 thoughts on “Three Beautiful Things Thursday”

  1. Yeap, me too! Would love to learn how to cook some Afghan food 🙂 i've been reading your blog for sometime now, really enjoy it! Waleed is so cute and reading about your motherhood experience has been entertaining and informational even. yay to 7 years of blogging!


  2. Ummm… yeah share the recipe, please. Thank you 🙂
    It is interesting to harbor multiple emotions; at times one takes over and times another!
    I often wonder about the word 'purity'… I read a quote that goes, “purity is to win one thing only.” That aint human, right?


  3. Parv, thanks for the comment and delurking 🙂 I appreciate it :))

    Susan, I think the recipe is a go- will translate it next time I make it which might be very very soon!

    A, hm, your quote is making me think- thanks for the food for thought.


  4. Aisha , I am still here, reading you and blogging for 6 years…lol

    So any big party for K-Junior!? (I had a huge one for my son and still watch that DVD with same nostalgia).


  5. I love Afghani food! I have tons of favorite restuarants in NYC (where I'm from), but sadly haven't found many good ones after moving to San Francisco.

    Happy 11 months to your son and happy blogging anniversary!


  6. Mystic, you're like family now, lol 🙂 you have been reading a very long time- thank you for that- I read you too- still. We're one of the truckers still around 🙂 Aw, about your son's first birthday! We plan to do something to celebrate!

    lol, good to know anon 🙂

    Sunehra, NYC has great afghan eats as does DC/VA area. I'm sure SF does too- but even if it doesn't at least your'e in sF 🙂 Thanks for the happy 11 month birthday wishes 🙂

    Muslim Wife- RIGHT?!?! I was like, are you kidding me? I know someone who knows these kids and want to tell them that this isn't the way to go but maybe it will work who knows? It's across from the Krogers by the highway. . . seriously?! lol 🙂


  7. You're making me hungry, and I'm pretty sure there is no outlet for Afghani cravings where I live.

    I didn't realize that Waleed is a May baby! (I'm a come-lately blogging friend). Bear is too…what a beautiful month to have a child! The first birthday does not provide the magic key to understanding all things motherly, but I think that Bear's second year has been imensely easier than her first. But, now if I could only stop time and keep her at this age for awhile longer!


  8. Oh yeah? when is she going to be having her birthday? May is great isn't it to have a birthday?!?! I am afraid of the second yera- as it brings with it terrible 2's have you seen that?


  9. “Its beautiful to see him reach each milestone and heartbreaking as you leave those long-awaited moments behind. I never knew it was possible to harbor two equally strong opposing emotions simultaneously until now. Loving him involves a sort of heartbreak that inexplicably leaves me happier than I ever knew I could be.”
    This just explains it perfectly! I'm only 5 weeks in and this is just how I feel. She laughs and smiles now! I think these feelings of pride, accomplishment and heartbreak are just going to grow with time!


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