Lily’s Blog, Dragon Absconded!
Baking Until I Drop

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Sunday 29th, August 2010

Itikhaaf (The Night of Power)

My dad and brother are doing Itikhaaf this year. I don’t think my dad has done it before but my brother has in Saudia Arabia. I am curious if he does it in the Masjid Al-Haram or any of the other masjids. They spend the last 10 nights of Ramadhan in the masjid. They sleep the days (except when they have to wake up to pray) and wake the nights in devotion and extra prayer. Yes they can do extra prayer during the days too. They can’t leave unless to get food or some emergency.

They both have a wife and daughter at home, not doing Itikhaaf. I can guarantee you that one of those daughters is not going to be much help. She’s not yet 3! :)

Thankfully the masjid has a working fridge and stove. The oven hasn’t been used in ages so they won’t use that. We’ll leave one five-gallon container of water with them and they’ll get the toaster oven. I told mom we can stock the freezer with a bag of fries and frozen fish sticks. We will partly bake some little beef pies that mom made and they can finish them up in the oven. And when we cook dinner we will carry it down for them. But since they will keep a car, maybe they can also come pick it up. I told them they can also expect KFC and Pizza and other food I feel like going and buying. After all, we might not be doing Itikhaaf but we will also have/want to spend the nights in extra devotion. My sister-in-law will make sure they’re stocked with snacks. Maybe we’ll move some of the niece’s into the masjid. I haven’t had chinese food in ages. Since my brother has been home I’ve not made pizza.

Empty house. Woohoo. My sister-in-law might spend some time by her mother. I tried to convince my mom she should do it too. Women don’t do it in the masjid. They kinda sequester themselves in part of the house, I think. Imagine…whole house too myself! Woohoo! Unfortunately no.

Now, you might be wondering what is the point of Itikhaaf.
Continue reading Itikhaaf (The Night of Power)

Saturday 28th, August 2010

Is it the 17th fast today?

I think last night was the 17th tarawih and thus we’re on to my 17th fast.
I’m very happy. I remember it wasn’t too long ago that I only made 19 for the month and was thrilled!
Insha Allah, I will make that and more :)

We made beef pies, froze some, baked some, sent some to the masjid and kept some.
We’ll send some of the beef pies with my brother and father for Itikhaaf next week.
I guess…more on that later? :)

We have two Iftar and dinners this weekend. Yay! And one on Tuesday (Emanciaption Day), otherwise known as the start of Itikhaaf.

I haven’t been sleeping much unfortunately.

Thursday 26th, August 2010


I think tonight was the 16th Tarawih.
I missed it.
Last night, I went to Tarawih and just prayed half and then Witr (this is usually the last prayer at night, strongly recommended yet not cumpulsory).
I was in such pain. My feet hurt (like on top the arches?). I prayed on a chair for half of the Tarawih I did pray. For that first rakaah (repetition), my niece stood and watched me until I got back up. Then she dragged a plastic chair, climbed on it, sat down, made (praying) motions, then stood up, made motions and returned to her running around the masjid.
I thought resting since I was in pain and soooo tired would be a good plan.
I have my doubts now.
My niece was *thrilled* to have a life-sized adult doll. She climbed on me. All bits. She “jumped”. Even when I went to pray the Witr, she still launched herself on me. She had fun. I didn’t mind except…

I woke up for Suhur with a cramp in an upper calf (?). That was new.

And why am I so tired?


Monday was a nice easy drive.
Wednesday, since the parents were going up that side I didn’t bother drive myself (NOTE: not driving, sitting in the back, aids car sickness). There was traffic for some unknown reason and it took about 1hr 30min to reach (it is usually just over an hour).

Today there was traffic. It just took over 2 hours! They say traffic was backed up all the way to Gasparillo.
Unfortunately we knew why.
There was a 3-person 3-car fatality and others taken to hospital. I don’t know if any more died. My heart goes out to them :(

And tomorrow?
Well as I was coming home today, I heard that a portion of the northbound highway collapsed so single-lane traffic and big jam. I wonder how far and if I will get stuck.
(Mom says don’t go to work!)
I’ve already been leaving early because of Ramadan.

Anywayz, I do have pictures to post but I’m beat. I fell asleep after breaking my fast for like 3+ hours and only just ate dinner and seriously contemplated skipping. I’m off to shower and pray Tarawih (and everything else) all by myself. On a chair!

All the best on the roads. Be careful!

Monday 23rd, August 2010

Taste T&T Press Release

Well mep *just* tweeted about Taste T&T, linking to their post.

And from there, I got to the press release on TDC’s website. Okay so you’re thinking why didn’t I go there in the first place? Well they didn’t link me to there did they?

I wish they could keep track of their multiple websites.

Previous posts:
Taste T&T 2010 Hits the Road
Further Thoughts

(Ramadan post coming soon…I have pictures of food! But I haven’t looked at them yet…doubtful as to their quality. But our masjid has at least 3 more iftars! woohoo!)

Sunday 22nd, August 2010

Further Thoughts on Taste T&T 2010

See first post.

It occurs to me the workshop is on September 2nd and 3rd.
Bear in mind, so you don’t attribute anything to sour grapes, I have no expectation of being invited.

But, that’s during Ramadhan. You know fasting?
But I guess muslims only account for about 6% (or something like that) of the population.
And of that, who knows how many fast, right?
So, maybe muslims not really invited.
Maybe after all, we’ve not really contributed to what’s made Trinbagonian food so unique…so good.
So fasting muslims don’t need to be invited to the workshop at all!

And then the first Sunday lunch is on September 12th.
Well, let me tell you, Eid-ul-Fitr is most likely September 10th or maybe the 11th.
Will I really be able to convince my tired parents and other muslim family to drive up to Toco the next day?

Well, Chennette might be here for that weekend.

ETA: This link has two links to T&T websites, neither of which work.
What a release.

Taste T&T 2010 Hits the Road

Casually flipping through the Sunday Express, what do I see?

Taste T&T 2010: Many Flavours ONE FESTIVAL

And I wonder to myself when is it?
How often do I pick up the physical newspaper and read it?

Have other people heard about it and not me? But I do check Twitter. Chennette keeps track of local food blogs better than me…

Anywayz, details for those who might not have seen it (someone tell me how long they running these ads because if it is only today then seriously need new committee real bad…if beginning of August…still need one).

It is in two parts all to discover what makes our food unique.

On September 2nd and 3rd is the Taste T&T 2010 Workshop (by Invitation Only) where local and international chefs will analyze our dishes.

Then they will continue on for a series of Sundays in the “villages that made our trademark dishes famous”. Come for Sunday Lunch (10am to 5pm)

  • Toco Sea Food, 12th September @ Toco Regional Complex Grounds.
    Special Prize for Best Seafood Broth
  • Tunapuna Creole Food, 19th September @ Honeymoon Recreational Ground.
    Special Prize for Best Curry Duck
  • Debe East Indian Delights, 26th September @ Venue to be determined.
    Special Prize for Best Doubles


Did I just give TDC a free ad?? :)
(ha! not much people read this)

Well they said for further information call head office or go to the website but I didn’t see anything listed there for current Taste…SURPRISE! (not!)

Not sure I want to go.
But want to go. Not sure about Chennette’s plans.
It’s very annoying…have they been planning this long?

Saturday 21st, August 2010

Qur’an Reading

I’m trying to read a lot more Qur’an now because of Ramadan.
My arabic understanding is limited but I can read.

Unfortunately, I’m not all that confident. Maybe it’s this little inferiority feeling…

A couple days ago I screwed up my courage and read for mom who was like, what? you’re not reading that bad.
Then I read for my brother.

I’m told I get more blessings struggling than those who are very fluent.

I always hope to carry on the quantity of reading I do in Ramadan out of Ramadan.

Software plug: On that subject, I use Zekr. It’s Open source Qur’an software.
The best thing about it is it works on Windows, Mac OSX and Linux (well I hope all Linux). It can display the Arabic with the transliteration with the translation, or alone. And you can add recitations (or use the online ones) and play each verse one at a time so you can read along with the recitation. I made sure all my family have it.

I must add that the audio doesn’t work on Linux PPC. I think it needs Java… But it still works nicely as a Qur’an.

Okay, I still use my hard copy qur’an because the script is *nice* and big, but I really need to get one of those colour-coded tajweed Qur’ans…it would help a lot more when I don’t have my computer.

I think we are onto our 10th fast…and
Pictures? :)