The Best Of 2016
I thought I'd pull up all the stuff that I've shared on the blog that made my year and do a tiny recap. It's so therapeutic to look back on things and remind yourself of the stuff that perhaps you don't individually remember but that helped make your life all rainbows and sunshine. Tell me about yours too?
Completely slipped my mind that I started the year with a trip to Thailand with my best friends. One week of absolute chill, beach and food time.
Went to Lahore with Nabeel for the second time for his brother's wedding. It's just something else to go back to your city with your spouse, it's all kinds of magic to show him the places you've always loved. Totally want to go back with him once just to explore the old city.
Made these clothes for my brother's wedding that all of you gave such incredible love to. It made my low-budget soul feel very proud. You can see more of them here.
Got the most drastic hair chop of my life and loved it way beyond own expectations.
Made over our living room with love and lots of color. Enjoyed every day spent here.
Traveled to Australia with Nabeel, and unexpectedly fell in love with a place that had never been on my radar.
Had our 5 year anniversary and made our first YouTube video together. (You can see it here)
Celebrated Ramzan like never before. Decorated our place, prayed harder than ever and truly reveled in the spirit of the month.
Had a low-budget, 'grand' iftari at our place and enjoyed like we were in a 5 star.
Made happy eid desserts.
Wished Eid Mubarik to each other and you.
Made a tiny tradition with friends of giving inexpensive Eid presents (50 dhs limit!) to each other and loved it.
Got this priceless (to me) present from Nabeel that he made entirely with his own two hands. Sawing, sanding, sketching, staining, the works - all outdoors in the intense Dubai heat. Felt humbled for such love in my life.
Celebrated the blog's third anniversary and felt proud of what I'd created.
Tried to make sense of our country's independence. Celebrated with whatever spirit resonated with me and felt grateful that I did.
Welcomed these guys into our family for our everyday meals. Dinner with Nabeel is special for me every night, so these plates coming in was truly a moment.
Read quite a few great books. Promised to read even more the next.
Had the most mangoes and mango milkshakes than I'd ever in my life.
Made slow and tiny health changes to my life. Stuck with them.
Had a low-key bari Eid with my favorite person and friends who feel like family.
Hung out with friends, explored new places, tried new things.
Organized and cleaned out my apartment like on a high-level government mission. Fell in love with my minimized belongings more than ever.
Partied at home.
Relaxed at home.
Fell in love more than ever.
Had countless cups of chai together.
Did many puzzles together.
Worked at my blog, my job, my passion, the hardest this year. Felt proud and humbled with my growth.
Traveled to Oman with our second family with no itinerary and exploring-on-the-go. Had a blast.
Had my best friends come over to Dubai for our annual girls trip and spent an amazing one week together.
Enjoyed this view wholeheartedly for two years and said goodbye last month as construction started and cranes came over. No sadness, all good. No other tenant of this apartment will ever have this view, we were lucky to have it.
Traveled to Bahawalpur, a city I've always wanted to visit, and fell in love so hard I might take a minute to recover :)
Tell me about bits from your year too?
* Even though this post includes things like travel to other places, love of a spouse, companionship of friends, and perhaps something else that you feel like you want but don't currently have - remind yourself that joy is not one-dimensional and there is contentment and peace in varied experiences. Being single, unmarried, childless, 'unsuccessful' at work, alone, are only labels that people give to us and ones that we accept. Contentment is also in a night in by yourself, a place explored alone, in a meal you made, the love from another relationship if not from having your own child, a good book you read, in acceptance of your life. Contentment is within yourself.
I wish you a very happy new year and a very, very content 365 days to come.