Casual Giving

April 29, 2014

Recently, I've noticed that whenever I write, speak or think, I would begin my sentences with
"I did..." "oh me too" "yeah, and I…" "I've been…" 
and there would be times during conversations where my subconscious would find a way to direct the attention of the subject towards me.
"Yes, this happened to me.." "Oh but I…"

I've noticed this for a while, and have been trying to divert the way I converse to sound a little less self centered and egotistic.

So, I've been trying to focus my attention on trying to give back instead of taking, taking, and taking. A friend of mine has been having personal problems for quite sometime now, and whenever I would see him during Toastmasters meetings, I would see him sulk in his dark little corner. Poor thing got me worried. Nothing is much worse then being in a room with a person who is radiating dark negative vibes all over the place.

Having wished someone would've done this to me while I was feeling down, I texted my friend and asked if he wanted to meet up. We met, talked, laughed, talked some more, and vented out those congested feelings. Giving him whatever advice I could give to help him through his struggles, we hugged good bye, and parted our separate ways.

This deed did not hit me until hours later. I had woken up that morning with the feeling to do something good, and had the urge to be there for a friend, and so I followed my impulses. Hours after we parted ways, that friend texted me with good news that could possibly make his life a whole lot easier.

It feels good to know that what you said or did made a difference in a persons life.
Approach someone today and make their day a bright and sunny one.

Fortunately, while shooting these photos, the sun was right in my eyes. So I've been trying to block the sun with my cooperative curly hair. Yes, my mane has been nice to me this past week by staying tamed. Thank you hair. I loove you. 


Top & Tank - F21 | Jeans - Bershka | Shoes - H&M
Jacket - New Look | Wallet - Ebay |

What was the last good meaningful deed you've recently done?


Book Review: Pressed Pennies by Steven Manchester

April 24, 2014

Pressed Pennies by Steven Manchester 
Genre: Romance
Synopsis: Rick and Abby grew up together, became best friends, and ultimately fell in love. Circumstance tore them apart in their early teens, though, and they went on to lives less idyllic than they dreamed about in those early days. Rick has had a very successful career, but his marriage flat-lined. Abby has a magical daughter, Paige, but Paige's father nearly destroyed Abby's spirit.
Now fate has thrown Rick and Abby together again. In their early thirties, they are more world-weary than they were as kids. But their relationship still shimmers, and they're hungry to make up for lost time. However, Paige, now nine, is not nearly as enthusiastic. She's very protective of the life she's made with her mother and not open to the duo becoming a trio. Meanwhile, Rick has very little experience dealing with kids and doesn't know how to handle Paige. This leaves Abby caught between the two people who matter the most to her. What happens when the life you've dreamed of remains just inches from your grasp?
Pressed Pennies is a nuanced, intensely romantic, deeply heartfelt story of love it its many incarnations, relationships in their many guises, and family in its many meanings. It is the most accomplished and moving novel yet from a truly great storyteller of the heart. - Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

About a few weeks ago, Steven Manchester emailed me asking if I would like to review his novel, Pressed Pennies, and without hesitation I said yes. 

Pressed Pennies is another wonderful, heartwarming, and romantic novel. And when I say romantic, I literally mean extremely romantic, with the words, the gestures, the kisses. There were scenes in the book where I would think that the romance between Rick and Abby got a little too much, and gave me the urge to say "Oh okay, that's enough with all this talk about love".

Despite the overwhelming romance between Rick and Abby, pressed pennies was heartwarming enough to make the reader go "aww". The idea of pressing a penny down by the railroad for good luck is something I've never heard of, and it intrigued me to the point where I wondered if people actually did that. If they did, then it's a fun way to use the placebo effect to get good luck. I love it! 

Steven Manchester has warmed my heart once again with his deep meaningful writing. Pressed pennies was another page turner, that showed the love not only between a man and a woman, but also between a mother and her daughter. 

I highly recommend this wonderful novel to those who enjoy reading about heart warming flashbacks, overwhelming romantic words and gestures, and reading about how the lives of three people changed with the power of love.

Thank you Steven for giving me this wonderful opportunity to read and review you marvelous novel! 
Have a great day everyone! 


Museland Festival - Indie Music All Around

April 19, 2014

When one writes about an indie music festival, one must listen to the awesome indie music playlist on iTunes while writing. 

Listening to indie music, especially indie folk and rock, brings a sense of freedom into the minds of the audience. Watching them sway from side to side, nodding their heads, waving their hands up in the air, and twirling round and round to the music feeling free and knowing that, that moment is the moment of utter bliss and absolute freedom from the real world. 

Attending this music festival for the first time, widening my horizons when it comes to socializing and how do you say, growing up and becoming an adult, makes me feel odd, awkward, and scared. I may sometimes point out that I don't care what other people think of me, but there will always be times when I feel others judge me based on my personality, and not on how I look. That's what I have to work on, getting over the idea of others judging me based on my personality. It may all be difficult but it all takes time. 

I wrote about attending the Museland Festival a few posts back and simply wrote that I was excited to dress up and dance to the music. Arriving a hour later to the actual opening of the festival, a few solo artists had finished their set and were entertaining their fans, I on the other hand, just sat there, enjoyed the view and watched as others around me interact with each other. It amazes me how people can constantly talk about absolutely nothing. 

I'm glad I went to the festival. I enjoy seeking out new potential artists to add onto my everyday music. There was this one solo artist, Briar Rabbit, who flew in from the US and has great songs. Songs that I would definitely listen to on a weekly, maybe monthly basis. He was so very natural on stage, despite the really bad crowd...It felt like an honor to watch him live. Briar Rabbit SoundCloud

Night time flew in and the here was where the magic happened. A band I instantly fell in love with. Mo Zowayed and the Accidentals. It was in that moment when I got up front and started dancing to their music, that I felt freedom. They sound like a mix of Mumford and Sons with their own unique rhythm. Surprising enough to hear, they are from Bahrain. I didn't know this kind of good music existed in Bahrain until that night. They were simply awesome for a Bahraini based band. Mo Zowayed SoundCloud

| Dress, Crop top, Plaid Shirt, Belt  - Forever 21| Shoes - H&M | Necklace - Ebay | Bag - Gift from Dad
Can you tell I don't really shop at Forever21?
(credits go to my good friend Sa-sha for the outfit photos of me, Thank you so much!)

Lastly, I am happy to say that there were a few others; including myself, who dressed as though they were going to Coachella. With the earthy colors, maxi side cut skirts, cowboy boots, and it seemed like that day was the day, everyone decided to let their natural curly hair loose, instead of the usual blow dry and straightened. Now I'm wondering if this is the type of clothes people wear to music festivals. Do they really? 

Have a great day everyone! And listen to good music that make you feel good and awesome!

This post has been linked up at Style Honestly


Finally a day in the sun - Al Dar Islands

April 16, 2014

Last weekend, a bunch of us went to celebrate the summer weather at Al Dar islands. That's a 10-15 minutes boat ride from the small island of Bahrain to a smaller hoookah shaped island of Al Dar. That's right, the island is shaped like a hookah pipe.

Al Dar islands was officially open to the public back in 2007. And it honestly just feels like a couple of years. I didn't officially hear about the island until a few years back when so much random hype gathered one year. I was probably kept out of the loop on this one. 

We arrived at the main Al Dar office relatively early and being grateful that there wasn't much of a crowd at the time, it took a few minutes of waiting before we got a ride to the dock to catch the next boat to the island. The ride to the island was as bumpy and swooshy as every boat ride. It was fun and the scenery was beautiful, well not as beautiful as other seascapes but beautiful enough for this tiny island. I felt a little odd and stunned seeing my simple boring country that I call home, from another island.  

15 minutes and a bulk of tangled hair strands later, we got to the tiny island of Al Dar. It was hot, and all I wanted to do was take off my dress and get my feet in the water.


| Dress & Shorts - Philippines | Bikini - New Look | Tank - Forever 21 

I decided to wear a halter dress I bought from the Philippines over my bikini. And being the slightly conservative middle eastern woman that I am, I wore shorts and tank on top of my bikini for swimming, more like standing in the water. 

The island was a good experience, especially on my skin, it's soft as ever. The sand and sea were clean, despite a few shells, rocks and fishes in some areas. The service was moderate. We didn't spend as much as we thought we would. We thought our tab would go up to more than 100BD ($250), thankfully I didn't. Ya'll can check out their website to learn more about the island. 

I give it 3.5 pretty flowers. Because it wasn't as good as other beaches I've been to, but it was the best one I've seen in Bahrain. I would definitely go back there. 

Oh one more thing I just want to put out there, there were nice eye candy playing volleyball in the water right in front of us. It felt like Samantha from Sex and the City, staring at those sweet white boys and their biceps and abs...Please excuse indecent remarks... 


Epherium Chronicles Book 1: Embrace Book Blast + GIVEAWAY

April 15, 2014

The Epherium Chronicles: Embrace 
Book one of The Epherium Chronicles Hope

Captain James Hood of the Earth Defense Forces remembers what it felt like. Twenty-five years ago, it surged through him as a young boy watching the colony ships launched by mega-corporation Epherium rocket away. He, like so many others, dreamed of following in the colonists' footsteps. He wanted to help settle a new world—to be something greater. Then came the war... Hope. During years of vicious conflict with an insectoid alien race, it was nearly lost. Though Earth has slowly rebuilt in the six years since the war, overcrowding and an unstable sun have made life increasingly inhospitable. When mysterious signals from the nearly forgotten colony ships are received, Hood is ordered to embark on a dangerous reconnaissance mission. Could humanity's future sit among the stars? Hope. Hood needs it now more than ever. As secrets about the original colonists are revealed and the Epherium Corporation's dark agenda is exposed, new adversaries threaten the mission, proving more dangerous to Earth than their already formidable foes…
From Laura (5 star reviewer on Amazon) "I was shocked about how fast the author sucked me into a new world, a world that I am impatiently awaiting the next in the series. I read from another reviewer that it would make a great television series and I would have to agree with that reviewer."
From Kathryn Svendsen of Kathryn's Shelf Full of Books Blog (4 star review) : "It was a delight to read. Mr. Wilson did an excellent job of introducing each of the many characters involved in this large crew. There were many people to keep track of, and like a movie we found out a bit about the character of each one as we went along."  

Book Trailer

Excerpt “I have an idea about that,” Hood said as he opened a channel to Engineering. “Mr. Whitaker. I need that shield of yours.” Whitaker responded slightly out of breath. “Sorry, Captain. I can’t give it to you. That second rock that smacked us caused one of the reactors to scram, so we shut it down. Until we get that stable and some more juice in the batteries, I can’t power it up.” Hood muttered under his breath as he pounded his fist on his chair. He took a deep breath, and let it out slowly as he closed the channel. “Alright, our ace is out of commission,” he told Sanchez, “and even with the best of my contingency plans, we are going to have to do this the hard way.” “You have multiple contingency plans for this?” Sanchez asked as he pointed to the viewport and the many asteroids floating nearby. Hood looked at Sanchez and raised a single eyebrow. “Forget I asked,” Sanchez said.

Author T.D. Wilson: T.D. Wilson was born in 1968 in Troy, Ohio and has been an avid fan of science fiction and fantasy from a very young age. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering and has supported the systems and networks in several of the largest Supercomputing data centers in the world. His early thirst for adventure in reading began as he explored many of the great stories of Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. As his reading scope expanded, Mr. Wilson was fascinated by strange new worlds from the magical of Middle Earth and Narnia to the far reaches of space in Star Trek and Babylon 5. As a science fiction author, he strives to integrate a realistic flavor to his worlds by providing his readers a feel for the real science in science fiction. A topic he loves to discuss with his friends and readers. Mr. Wilson still lives in Ohio with his wife and their two sons.
Website * Facebook * TwitterGoogle+ * YouTube * Goodreads

book blast button       

Blast Giveaway
$50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash Ends 5/15/14 Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.
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Now this sounds like the kind of book you sink your teeth (or more like eyes) into. 

Let's go to Coachella

April 13, 2014
Okay, I have to say, the title of this post is not really appropriate since I'm not going to Coachella this year, but I would really loooove to go.

I heard about Coachella last year or maybe two years ago, and ever since I've been wanted to attend at least one day of the concert.

For those of you who don't have the slightest idea of what Coachella is, it is an annual two-three day music festival held at Indio, California, USA. It showcases multiple bands and artists of different genres from hip hop, indie, rock, electronic, etc. It is the time of year where celebrities go to have fun and party, and show off what they've got that's comfy, grungy, and stylish. It is a time where paparazzi photos are taken and posted online to make us "non-goers" feel like we're worth nothing by not attending the two day concert. At least that's how I see it.
Let's go to Coachella

For me, it is a time of year where I wish I could dress up in my most fabulous boho-ish, comfy outfit, and dance to the music like the twenty year old I am.

Fortunately for my urges to dress up, I get to attend an indie music festival here in Bahrain called the Museland Festival which is hosted by Museland Records. For those of you residing in Bahrain at this time and would like to attend, click here for more info.

I don't know any of the bands/artists playing at the festival, but my cousin tells me they're all pretty good, and I would never doubt her sources when it comes to music, especially indie.

All I hope for my musically festive weekend is that all goes well, since I haven't really been to any of these things before.

Have any of you ever been to Coachella? 

Summer time madness with floral

April 11, 2014

This post was supposed to be called "Spring time madness" but the weather suddenly changed - again, and now it's hot, kind of. Bahrain doesn't have spring, it only has the following: summer, scotching hot summer, winter, and frostbite winter, oh and random sandstorms or rain every now and then. So yay for that. Now the county is on the summer phase of the weather cycle in a desert. 

I persuaded my brother to come and take photos with/of me this time. I thought it would be fun to add him into the frame. 

Since I'm trying to save up for my trips to Oman and Florida later this summer, I haven't settled down to having a budget every month. I've bought what needs to be bought and gawked over the things that I can't seem to afford, but the term budget doesn't seem to dangle on top of the price tags when I see thing's I can't afford.

But nonetheless, I've settled on buying ONE simple summer dress that has the usual A-line cut that seems to flatter my body. Tip of the day: Wear the type of clothes that flatter your body type, and you'll INSTANTLY feel good about yourself. And this dress did it for me, though, I would love it a lot more if it were a V-neck. My ladies were feeling a little bit restrained and needed a bit of air, poor things.

When I walked into Forever 21 the day I bought the dress; which was quite recently actually, everything was so floral. Literally. All the floral tops, dresses, and pastel everything. Oh and crop tops. I don't know if they have it on your side of the world but is it me or has F21 gone and chopped off all their basic tee's and decide to sell them for a lot more that they should for a small shirt. There were crop tops every where in the store and don't get me wrong, I enjoy dressing up dresses and skirts with my crop tops, and I know that it's a trend, but go easy on it F21, people might think it's a children store.


| Dress (similar, similar) - Forever 21 | Shoes & Belt - H&M | Cardigan & Necklace - Gifts from Dad | 
It was a fun shoot. Thanks bro! 

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Style Honestly