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the last day

August 22, 2012

Saturday was the worst day.

I still can’t pinpoint exactly what my problem was but I suppose contributing factors included not having any reserves left after 29 days of fasting, temperatures were hovering around 95 degrees, and Maya kept running to me with urgent statements like “Mama! Dad is out of tea bags.”

Throw in the fact that at the last minute Ali decided to spend the night elsewhere, thereby leaving me with nobody to take out my bad mood on, and I was nearly beside myself.

Normally I’d make myself feel better by assigning Maya chores my parents used to assign me when they were in a bad mood: like polishing the marble floor. This didn’t happen, however, because we don’t have marble floors. Plus my guilt about after school care is still in full swing.

So I decided to cut Maya some slack and did something completely out of character: I closed my computer and took Maya to the beach.

  • We collected shells.
  • We flew a kite.
  • We assembled a very ugly and distorted whale out of sand.
  • I didn’t roll my eyes at the exorbitant $12 beach parking fee.
  • I assured a panicked Maya that it didn’t matter that her dress got wet and dirty.
  • I swallowed my anxiety at her wet and dirty dress.
  • I even managed not to worry about the restroom situation, despite the fact that my previous experience was still fresh in my mind.

And at the end of the afternoon, as I hiked to my car – still baking in its overpriced parking spot – with Maya clinging to me and complaining about how hot and thirsty she was? I somehow found the energy to laugh it off.

Yeah. I still can’t believe it either.

92 Comments leave one →
  1. August 22, 2012 12:27 am

    That is a beautiful picture, Ameena!! Eid Mubarak!!

  2. glamorous glutton permalink
    August 22, 2012 1:04 am

    Great picture at the beach. What a great sounding day – I’m sure it’ll be a time Maya remembers. The unplanned trips are always the most fun. GG

    • August 22, 2012 7:59 pm

      I totally think so too…and I am trying to be more spontaneous for that reason.

  3. squigglefloey permalink
    August 22, 2012 1:13 am

    Maya needs to do an updobun-thingy tutorial for us all. Her hair is so cute!
    And, seriously, about this weather. I just…can’t anymore. I need to breathe again!

    • August 22, 2012 8:00 pm

      I’m not biased or anything but Maya has such great hair! I am so envious.

  4. August 22, 2012 3:44 am

    Bravo Ameena! Can imagine how hard it must have been to ignore the wet and dirty dress and the restroom situation 😀 Eid Mubarak!

    • August 22, 2012 8:00 pm

      Thanks Madhu. The dirty dress almost killed me. 🙂

  5. August 22, 2012 4:42 am

    Yay! Awesome…what a beautiful day 🙂
    Great picture!

  6. August 22, 2012 5:07 am

    What a fantastic way to flip a bad day on its head! Maya is so adorable 🙂

  7. anywherethereisanairport permalink
    August 22, 2012 5:26 am

    Oh how I can relate to every word. Except instead of my child, it was my husband. Weekend numero uno after the Spaniard moved here he really really wanted to go to the beach. Yes we live in FL and no I don’t like weekend trips to the beach. I reluctantly took him, was glad that I did, but we haven’t been back since. Maybe he didn’t like it as much as he thought he would. Here’s to hoping 🙂

    • August 22, 2012 8:01 pm

      The beaches in Spain are so amazing that he probably realized he wasn’t missing much in Florida. 🙂

  8. August 22, 2012 5:26 am

    So fun!! Sounds like an amazing day! 🙂

    And I love Maya’s dress – so cute!

  9. August 22, 2012 5:27 am

    Looks like you picked a nice day to drop everything and take Maya to the beach. I would imagine the day would not have panned out so well if it were raining. The plus side is that you got this great picture of Maya. Very cute.

    • August 22, 2012 8:02 pm

      Rain isn’t usually a problem here in LA. I can count on one hand how many times it rained last year!

  10. August 22, 2012 5:33 am

    Oh what fun!!!! That picture is awesome. Maya looks so tiny with the expanse of big blue ocean in front of her. And you know what? Even without the beautiful photograph she will remember that day forever and ever.

    • August 22, 2012 8:03 pm

      Here’s hoping the memory of that day will erase some of the memories of me yelling at her. 🙂

  11. samanthaangela permalink
    August 22, 2012 5:42 am

    Eid Mubarak Ameena!

  12. August 22, 2012 5:49 am

    A beach day sounds like a great remedy. I should do that kind of thing more often…What a beautiful photo too!

  13. August 22, 2012 6:10 am

    Oh how lovely. I love going to the beach. Unfortunately, our house is far from one. Sounds like you & Maya had a great time. Happy Eid Mubarak! Question of the day, why did Ali ask Maya to tell you about the tea bag? I think I know the answer 🙂

    • August 22, 2012 8:04 pm

      Of course you know the answer…he wanted me to rush over to Trader Joe’s and pick some up!! 🙂

  14. August 22, 2012 6:18 am

    All in all, it sounds like a lovely day. 🙂 The water looks so pretty!

  15. August 22, 2012 7:48 am

    this sounds like an amazing beach day!!!!

  16. August 22, 2012 8:34 am

    I’m sure it was a perfect day! I’m in SD and it’s hot here so I know you must be really feeling the heat up there. Hot days for me are the best days for the beach because otherwise i’m too cold.

    • August 22, 2012 8:05 pm

      Same here…I am usually freezing and the beach is foggy almost all the time!

  17. August 22, 2012 9:18 am

    1. Love that picture of Maya.
    2. What a fun day.
    3. I feel like I’m losing you! 😉 I kid. I need to find a beach.

    • August 22, 2012 8:05 pm

      Don’t worry…you’ll never lose me! My sarcasm and impatience are way more commonplace than my ability to laugh things off.

  18. August 22, 2012 10:47 am

    I love the beach, but $12 for parking is insanity. I complain about the $3 an hour or whatever it is here being too much.

    • August 22, 2012 8:06 pm

      $12 is highway robbery. Especially for the short time we were there!

  19. August 22, 2012 11:10 am

    I am glad you had a great day at the beach and bravo for letting go of the bathroom situations! I hope the weather cools down a little bit 🙂

    • August 22, 2012 8:07 pm

      I think today was about 20 degrees cooler than Saturday. Hopefully this cool front sticks around!

  20. Jeena permalink
    August 22, 2012 11:44 am

    I don’t miss much about Southern Cal (outside of my family), but I do miss that beach. Gorgeous shot. And good for you!!

  21. August 22, 2012 12:50 pm

    That sky is so blue it doesn’t even look real! Glad you guys had such a good day. 🙂

  22. August 22, 2012 1:15 pm

    i’m pretty impressed~ i bet it felt good to just let go and look at the beautiful memory you now have! 🙂 i wish i could get to a beach but i’m landlocked in pittsburgh. you will never see this girl swim in a river haha.

    • August 22, 2012 8:52 pm

      I’ve always wanted to visit Pennsylvania…hopefully I will get there someday soon!

  23. August 22, 2012 3:32 pm

    I love Maya’s dress. Have I already asked you if you’ll be my personal shopper. $12 for a parking space is ridiculous. They are free up here (although it’s usually not quite as warm…). Still, Congress should be notified ASAP.

    • August 22, 2012 8:53 pm

      Maya’s super cute dress came from my MIL…who has way better taste than me! And yes, Congress should get involved for sure… 🙂

  24. August 22, 2012 4:16 pm

    You did it! My cab driver the other day said that the first five days for him was the worst. Now, he’s used to it. And, kudos for keeping calm about Maya’s wet and sandy dress!

    • August 22, 2012 9:00 pm

      The first 5 days…and about 24 of the ones after that were the hardest for me. 🙂

  25. August 22, 2012 4:32 pm

    Great job!!! To me, motherhood is made up of numerous tiny moments of guilt attack. But then once in a while a big victory like this wipes clean the slate! 🙂

    Stop feeling guilty every afternoon m’lady! just make sure you have a big win such as this day once in a while! 😉

    • August 22, 2012 9:01 pm

      You say it so perfectly…tiny moments of guilt 24/7!! And yes, I’m working on not feeling so guilty all the time…

  26. libyan_coolchick permalink
    August 22, 2012 6:42 pm

    Eid Mubarak!

  27. August 22, 2012 8:49 pm

    Eid Mubarak Ameena! I think it was a lovely thing to do and definitely not something to be guilty about. You did good 🙂

    • August 22, 2012 9:03 pm

      Thank you Sig. I love the confirmation that I did good. And I need the confirmation! 🙂

  28. August 22, 2012 8:57 pm

    are a groovy mama ❤ Xx

  29. August 22, 2012 11:32 pm

    Wow, I guess the advice “go fly a kite” worked?
    Congratulations on that outing. It is remarkable to just say screw it all and go have a beach day…I’m bad at that sort of thing myself:)

    • August 26, 2012 8:35 am

      “Go Fly A Kite” should have been the title of this post…that would have been perfect!

  30. August 22, 2012 11:50 pm

    A belated Eid Mubarak, Ameena 🙂

    Glad you had a reasonably bearable day at the beach 😛 But I totally understand about wet and sandy clothes, oh hell they’re a big pain in the *#@ to clean!

    • August 26, 2012 8:36 am

      Thank you Asuma!

      Sand just seems to get everywhere, doesn’t it? Every. Where.

  31. August 22, 2012 11:53 pm

    Eid Mubarak Ameena. You did well. So well.Your post makes me happy. I read it twice actually especially the action points. I am having a dreadful day in office and I just browsed to see what you have posted. Thanks for making it bearable.

    • August 26, 2012 8:36 am

      I’m sorry you had a dreadful day and I’m glad that my randomness could help a bit. A belated Eid Mubarak to you as well!

  32. August 23, 2012 5:56 am

    Eid Mubarak
    hey ameena, and cut yourself some slack too… eyes rolling or not, swallowing your anxiety or not.. you did what was to be done… giving maya a very good time indeed 🙂
    okay now onto food, some Eid food pics?

    • August 26, 2012 8:37 am

      Eid food pics? I don’t think I took any, come to think of it!!

      A belated Eid Mubarak to you as well Ritika!

  33. August 23, 2012 7:43 am

    Eid Mubarak!!
    Wow! have always wanted to wish someone I knew, on Eid. You, via the blog, come closest 🙂 Someday, I hope to wish someone the customary “gale milkar” way and hope fervently that the said someone would love to dish out yummy sevaiyyan (slurp! slurp!)

    Its great you decided to chill and relax with dear Maya – huge payoffs, in future I’m sure.

    I loved the pictures posted in your earlier two posts and hence have nominated you for the Capture the Colors contest. Here are the details –

    I hope you’ll enjoy participating as much as I did.

    • August 26, 2012 8:38 am

      My mom made sevaiyyan (never knew how to spell it until now). There was a ton leftover…I wish I could have sent you some!

      Thank you for the Eid wishes and for the link. I am going to check it out!

  34. August 23, 2012 7:58 am

    Ohhhhh I wish we lived near a beach!! Lucky girls!!!

  35. August 23, 2012 9:41 am

    YEAH!!!! You went to the beach!!!!! I can totally relate to the anxiety felt when your kids cute clothes are getting a beating, but it’s all for a good cause. Also the bathroom situation is never good but just try and erase it from your memory and never think of it again. $12? That’s just crazy. Where I go it’s $3 all day parking. I am just glad you flew by the seat of your pants and went. Lovely picture.

    • August 26, 2012 8:38 am

      You were my inspiration for the beach Marie!! Seriously. And $3? Amazing.

  36. August 23, 2012 1:23 pm

    Well done, Ameena! Now all you need are some lemons so you can make lemonade. 🙂

    • August 26, 2012 8:39 am

      The beach I can do. Barely. Making lemonade? That just seems impossible… 🙂

  37. August 24, 2012 1:44 am

    Eid Mubarak Ameena! I’m sure Maya had the best time at the beach with you! Please don’t feel guilty about working, it’ll make these outings even more special 🙂

    • August 26, 2012 8:39 am

      Thanks for the Eid wishes Sonali! And for making me feel better about my ever-present guilt. 🙂

  38. August 24, 2012 9:21 am

    Ahh you are learning that sometimes its ok to let things go… But she clearly is your daughter and worries about things too… You should try and chill more often… Just a tad then lol

    She is gorgeous 😉

    • August 26, 2012 8:40 am

      I worry that Maya is worrying way too much for her age. I wish I was kidding here!

      • August 26, 2012 2:23 pm

        i think if she sees you let your hair down a little she will relax too… I know it’s hard for you to do this… but you managed it once you can do it again

  39. August 24, 2012 11:18 am

    Good for you Ameena, being spontaneous. That is certainly something that I struggle with, as both my five-year-old and I are quite set in our ways. I just had to comment on something completely off topic though. I was reading through some older Actors Diet posts and came across your comment that Julie Andrews used to be your neighbor! Amazing! Geez, I’m such a nerd! Yours and Lynn’s blogs are two of only a handful that I read regularly. Anyways, I just got so excited that You lived next to Julie Andrews that I had to click on over here and make a fool of myself. So, now that I have accomplished that I should get back to work. 🙂 Maybe after lunch clean-up is done a beach trip is in order for my daughter and myself. Now if I could just get the husband to go to!

    • August 26, 2012 8:42 am

      Thank you K for coming over to say hello! Yes, Julie Andrews used to be our neighbor, I never did speak a word to her though. 🙂 You must be a fan of The Sound of Music? One of my favorite movies, although Maya doesn’t really get the appeal.


  40. August 25, 2012 10:52 am

    (belated) Eid Mubarak! Love love love the picture of Maya on the beach- really transports me so far away from Bombay! Good on you mate. (Sorry I’ve been watching a lot of Masterchef Australia) I see that sometimes doing something completely out of the blue when we’re about to explode is better than exploding. I am going to try this out.

    • August 26, 2012 8:42 am

      Sometimes exploding is really all that you can do though. I guess it’s all mood-dependent? 🙂 Thanks for the Eid wishes.

  41. August 25, 2012 11:18 pm

    This made me smile (as always!) and has motivated me to get myself to the beach sometime soon, I think I could use the break too.

    Also a belated Eid Mubarak Ameena! Hope it was great 🙂

    • August 26, 2012 8:43 am

      Thanks Nada! I hope that you had a great Eid as well!

  42. August 27, 2012 12:30 am

    Eid Mubarak to you, Ali and Maya! I love the photo of her on the beach!

  43. August 27, 2012 4:20 am

    Part of me thinks you may have a fever, the other part thinks you’re ready for camping. If only for the blog post that would follow.

    • Lady Jennie permalink
      August 27, 2012 6:04 am

      If only there was a like button for this comment!

  44. Lady Jennie permalink
    August 27, 2012 6:03 am

    You are nothing short of phenomenal.

    Ramadan was over on Saturday night, right?

  45. August 27, 2012 4:56 pm

    And here I was thinking that you were going to buy Maya her very own marble floor to polish. 😉 I’m glad that the two of you had such an adventure at the beach – I’m extremely impressed that you managed to fly a kite – I’m 100% positive that I can’t remember the last time I did that.

    p.s. Next time we need a picture of your hilarious and not anatomically-true-to-form-whale.

  46. August 27, 2012 6:26 pm

    Sounds like a terrific way to spend an afternoon “unplugged.” Your post inspires me to seize the day and spend more spontaneous time with my ponytails. As for the complaining, it wouldn’t be an outing if there wasn’t some complaining now would it?

  47. August 27, 2012 7:49 pm

    Eid Mubarak! The beach looks so nice… the waves. I recently went to the Jersey Shore and the water is so not blue. Sounds like you and Maya had a great day together.. sometimes seeing the ocean is the best escape.

  48. August 28, 2012 12:44 am

    super mom Saturday!

  49. August 28, 2012 9:04 am

    Great Photo! Sounds like a fun day, too!

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