With minimal but significant damage.

Gained four pounds! 

I could blame it on the stress but really, there’s no excuse.

We celebrated my father’s 75th ‘birthday’ on Saturday, even though we’re not exactly sure which day he was born.

Pakistani birth certificates are notoriously inaccurate.

He was born at home and parents have a certain amount of time to register the birth or else there’s some kind of fine.

But being the procrastinators that so many Pakistanis are, many of them take months to register the birth and to avoid the fine they just adjust the birthday.

We think his birthday was either April 1st or the 20th, but it might have been in September the year before because his initials are M.A. Khan, the M. standing for Muhammad, but there were a lot of his male cousins born around the same time and they were all M. A. Khans too, the A. being different names, the M. always being Muhammad.

So my father insists that his certificate got mixed up with one of his cousins.

It was a LOT of work.

In Pakistani households we tend to make everything from scratch.

We do cater big events like weddings, but something small like this (approximate 30 adults–that’s small in Pakistani standards) is supposed to be manageable.

Between myself, my mom and my sister, it was. There were three courses and a total of twenty items on the menu.

We only invited the uncles and aunts, not their grown children and their families, and still we had inquiries as to why so and so’s son wasn’t invited!

I told them there simply wasn’t enough room. We had to cut the list off somewhere!

Our family is about 200 people for goodness sakes and growing!

But my father was very happy!

We celebrated his lifetime achievements and in lieu of presents he had asked for us to express our thoughts about him.

I collected all the thoughts, in single sentences, and got one of my artistic daughters to write them down in calligraphy and she added a pencil drawn picture of the Kaaba. She framed it and it was absolutely stunning! Masha Allah!

My father was talking to me yesterday still saying how much he enjoyed it, and said that it was the happiest day of his life!


It was a LOT of work!

But boy is it worth it to know that with the help of my sister and mother, we were able to make him so happy!

There’s no feeling like the joy of making your parents happy!

And now I have to drive about 5 and a half hours up north to Espanola, Ontario, where for the next four days I’ll be touring the schools in and around Espanola and on Manitoulin Island.

I’m going to try to lose that four pounds I gained, and then some!

I’m taking a container of peanut butter with some whole wheat crackers to keep in the car for emergencies in between meals so I don’t reach for something unhealthy. And I’m taking my shoes so that I can go for walks after my long days of presentations.

It’ll be too hard to blog on the road so I’m taking a bit of a blog break.

I’ll be back on Friday, insha Allah.