Tuesday, May 31, 2011


My last post was monumental, for me at least. After I hit that Publish button, I was nervous to see what the reaction would be. I spent much of the day pacing, refreshing, and pacing some more. I think I drove everyone in my household a little bonkers.

As the day progressed however, and the heavens did not split asunder, nor did the earth open up to devour me whole, I began to suspect that my inkling regarding the nature of the universe and all who dwell therein might have been correct.

You could say that I had a moment of enlightenment.

In that moment, I realized that human beings, at our very core, are good. We are not vengeful, we are not imbued with hate. We are, as the old adage says, "A piece of the universe come alive". And the universe is a magical, glorious, delightfully perfect place.

Each of your comments to me proved this to be true, and for that moment of shared connection I am ever grateful, because it charged me with the strength of conviction to move mountains.

I carried it with me all weekend, and used it to nurture my own seedlings, both literal and metaphorical. I thought about this constantly, about how a moment of clarity channeled such positive emotion, and how in turn that emotion touched every interaction I had.

I was grateful for time away this long weekend, I needed it to recharge, refuel. I needed to spend days outside, from morning until night wandering, wondering, reveling in life's simple and pure pleasures.

 We broke out the trusty bikes and went for our first rides of the season - I took shots of Inara (While riding! Don't worry, I was safe!) inaugurating her new recumbent tandem trailer with 

Simple pleasures are nurturing both inside and out.
Above: Tuscan style baked beans - this is a recipe worth sharing with you in a future post. 

A walk through the market turned up new finds...(and you know how I have a penchant for fantastical-looking chairs - this one seemed to be conjured up from the very roots of an old and gnarly tree:)

Fingers beckoning...

"...Come, Boy, sit down. Sit down and rest."

The big news of the weekend was that Nissa finally got fed up enough with her hair constantly falling in her eyes to let me sweep it to the side with a barrette. Big girlie didn't even pull at the clip a single time either, rather pointing at her head and exclaiming, "I a pretty ballerina! I wearin' a clip!". So proud of herself.

Thus started the parade of photo-ops made possible by Big Sister's barrette collection, while I died from acute adorableness overload.


Much of our time was spent tending to our own garden, and in the digging and weeding, planting and seeding, there was a certain steady calm.

Along with innocent frivolity that made us smile (and sneeze - darn allergies!).

In these simple acts, I thought about my own seedlings, and how nurturing them with experiences such as these will hopefully allow them to grow up strong and tall, bendable to whichever wind they fancy, yet unbreakable against the storm. 

Solemn and Silly. The perfect balance.

I thought about supporting them with stakes of good deeds and kind words, much like you supported me when I laid my thoughts bare.

Even in the tiniest seed there is a miracle, waiting to happen...

I believe that it is through simple kindness and nurturing that we will see our seedlings blossom into reflections of the grand universe, that is theirs for the nurturing in return.

Such a marvelous sight these little seedlings are to behold. They nurture my heart simply by being. 

Thank you, universe, for this.

And that.

And this little family.

And of course, for you.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Coming Out.

I think it's time that I out myself here at Veni Vidi Blogi.

I am a Muslim. I support gay marriage.

There, I said it. But why am I saying it now? Why today?

Yesterday, Mayor Bloomberg of New York City asked our State Legislature to vote on the issue of marriage equality before the session ends next month. And no matter what his historical stance on this issue has been in the past, no matter who he is financially backing in the Senate, the point is this:

It's time to get this done. Once and for all, it is time.

And that's why I am saying this today, loud and proud, for all the world to hear.

I am a Muslim, and I support gay marriage.

I don't think the two statements are diametrically opposed, as much as the popular media would like to believe. And I also believe that I'm not the first Muslim to feel this way. Like former State Delegate Saqib Ali (and others of like mind), I view civil marriage as a state issue. I don't think that what you or I believe about gay marriage has any bearing on the issue in the least.

But there's something else too - and this is what will be hard for some of my family and friends to hear. I also don't believe that religion - any religion - should be based on hate, fear, discrimination. And this is where I have been waffling for many years.

It's always been okay (at least in my mind) to stand up and say, "Yes, I support marriage equality because it doesn't affect my religious views." And that's still true, but there is something that has been gnawing away at me silently, afraid to be formed into words...until now:

Muslims today should be able to identify with the issue of marriage equality with every fiber of our being.

We are a minority who are ostracized and condemned for the acts of a few individuals we don't even identify with. Every day, Muslims need to prove themselves to the world. Every day, in your neighborhood, in your child's schools, a Muslim tries to prove your stereotypes wrong. We show you with our words and deeds, how our faith is not based on hate. We exemplify how we are better than the frightening images you have filed away. How can we (and I) then turn around and point fingers at another group facing the same challenge? Are we not one and the same, both of us seen as outsiders? Is our struggle for acceptance not equal?

This is why I am speaking out today.

I know this will be hard for some people to hear. I know that it will be hard for some of my family and friends to come to terms with my views. But I believe this to be true, and I also believe that it is time for more of us to come out, stand up and echo these words.

The time is now.

Yousuf and I have always said that marriage equality is the single most important civil rights issue of our lifetime. How will history judge us if we do not stand up for what is right? How will I judge myself if I stay silent, knowing how deeply marginalization wounds? What will I tell my children in the future? That I was afraid? That I worried about being judged for my beliefs?

The sad truth is that as a Muslim, I already am. And that is why I can say this today, with an open heart and a very clear conscience.

My religion is love.

My faith is peace.

I am a Muslim.

And I support marriage equality.

If you live in the state of New York, you can use this nifty little tool from C-Span to find out who your local State Senator is. Then click on their name to find out their contact info. Call them today to tell them your name, address, and (in the words of a dear friend) "to step it the hell into the 21st century". OH, YES.

Also, this is a very sensitive issue for many of us. If you choose to comment (and I welcome the discussion, as always), all I ask is that you extend the same courtesy and respect to others that you would like for yourself. Gratitude, friends. xoxoxmahreen

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Birthday Blowout.

I know that you guys are probably so over hearing about birthdays, but bear with me here because this is so going to be worth your while. Trust me!

This past weekend we drove down (across?) to Albany to see my mother and celebrate her 60th birthday. Earlier in the week, Mom had told me over the phone that all she wanted for her birthday, more than anything else in the entire history of the universe, was for her children to be together (insert waves of guilt oozing through the phone here).

Keep in mind, this conversation occurred right after I wrote the post making fun of the toy weapons ridiculous clothing weird hanging food gifts she brought back from her trip, so I really had no leg to stand on if I tried to refuse her request. Since she was visiting my brother only a short four-ish hour drive away from us, we decided to make Mom happy and go for it, especially after she said the following:

"I don't want or need anything for my birthday, Mahreen. Please don't be offended, but I don't need more stuff that will just hang on my walls like useless ceramic garlic bulbs that people will point and laugh at. Just come and see me, okay?"

Oh, yes she did. Well played, Fatima (and now you know where I get it from).

We left Rochester promptly after Inara's T-ball practice on Saturday morning, driving like the wind all the way to Albany (while obeying all traffic laws of course). Of course the whole way down, Nissa screamed like a banshee because she was constrained, while Inara peppered us with a barrage of repeated, "How much looooooonger until we're there? This is so BOOOOORING!"

It was a fun drive, to say the least.

Spending time with my brother is always interesting. I don't get to see him nearly as much as I would like, so whenever we do get together we make up for it by having a rockin' good time filled with the things that make me feel truly happy down to my squishy center. I am of course referring to inappropriate jokes and farting sounds. Ah, the immature joy of sibling relationships - there's nothing else like it in all the world!

Soon after arriving in Albany, we noticed something funny going on in the bathroom. Or rather, we heard something funny. You can imagine how after nearly four hours on the road, we were all eager to use my brother's facilities, and as we all filed in and out - one after the other - each of us commented on the burbling. Yes, burbling. It sounded like the tap was dripping, except it wasn't on...followed by a gurgling, burbling...pop! sound coming from deep down in the drains. After we flushed it sounded like a deeper, more resonant burble.

BURBLE! And maybe then some gluggging.

The bathroom sounded drunk.

At first, Inara was understandably scared. We actually had to convince her that there was nothing coming out of the drains and the potty. And sure enough, as we stood there and watched (and listened), nothing actually happened. But it was the weirdest thing to hear, and it just sounded so odd. After a little while, the kids quite enjoyed it, running in and out of the bathroom going, "It's making sounds again! The bathroom's FARTING!" Followed by:

- My mother frowning,
- My sister in-law ignoring,
- My husband shushing,
- My nephew could care less-ing,
- My dad smiling, and
- My brother and I convulsing into histrionics. And asking the girls to imitate the bathroom again. And then laughing some more.

I know that most people (my very proper mother included), would find all of this behavior to be inexcusable, but HELLO! Gurgling bathroom? COME ON. You can't make stuff like that up - it's just begging to be pointed at, snickered about, mocked in every way, shape, and form imaginable. It's like every teenage boy's joke fantasy scenario come true which meant that for my brother and I, we had died and gone to a fart-filled heaven.

All throughout the weekend's festivities, whenever someone would mention the farting bathroom, we'd snicker. And my mom silently seethed, which made it so much better. And this is how immature we really are, that neither my brother nor I even offered to fix it. We didn't really care how or why it was happening, only that it was so. flipping. funny.

Granted, the only time it got even slightly annoying was when the girls were getting ready for bed in the room adjacent to the gurgling bathroom. It was really noticeable, but when Yousuf wasn't looking I made some farty faces at the kids while lip-syncing to the sounds coming through the wall. It was all good after that. Nothing like some good flatulence humor to set the tone for a good night's rest, I always say (and yes, I fully understand how mentally ill-equipped I am to care for children, but kids love me, what can I say? The farts get them every time).

At one point, my dad got a bit fed up. He drove out to the local grocery store and brought back two bottles of drain unclogging stuff. He, my brother and Yousuf stood around in the bathroom scratching their heads because no matter what they did to those drains, the noise would not stop. We slept, and the bathroom burbled. We woke up and it gurgled. We brushed our teeth and it hissed. We sang Happy Birthday and it joined in gluggity blub blub pop! We did NOT open any presents (as per Fatima's direct orders) and the bathroom said tick ploosh blub. It was so fantastic. The farting bathroom was ALIVE!

And then, the day after my mom's birthday cake had been cut, the morning we were getting ready to leave...something happened.

I was getting our stuff together to head back home, Nissa was playing with my nephew (Where playing involved him chasing her while she ran away, screaming in terror, which was funny because usually it's Nissa causing hysterical screaming in our house. Karma in the form of a 10 month-old cousin. I love it.) and two things occurred simultaneously:

- Inara asked if she could play in the backyard.
- I felt a-rumblin' down below.

I don't usually like to engage in potty talk, but this is vital information, and it's crucial that I share it with you. Not only that, but I must add this very pertinent fact as well. Sometimes, after I've had too much dairy, say like after I've eaten too much ice cream birthday cake, maybe ...my innards start to feel a little...loose. Ish.

If you know what I mean.

Aren't you SO glad you know all this about me?

Yousuf decided to get Inara out of my way by taking her outside, and I proceeded to take care of business. In the burbling bathroom. If you know what I mean.

Afterward, I heard Yousuf come to the back door and go, "Ummm...is anyone there? I think you should come and take a look at this..."

I was going to go and see what it was, but I was having dairy issues. If you know what I mean.

Luckily, Yousuf was standing directly outside the bathroom window, so I could hear everything that was going on out there, even if I couldn't see it. My brother, mom and dad went out to the back porch and Nissa and Inara were inside with me (because Zod forbid I should have any privacy while I'm taking care of my dairy issues). I heard lots of muttering and I heard something like "water overflowing from that hole", but I was too preoccupied with other, ahem, matters.

There were a few more moments of muttering, but I was a little too busy to hear what was being said. I was curious though, and so after I de-dairied I straightened myself out, flushed, and washed my hands in the sink next to the window which I had just opened up. The room needed a bit of refreshing, if you know what I mean, and I also wanted to see whatever Yousuf had found in the ground right outside the bathroom.

Right then, as I was drying my hands off I heard the familiar burbling of the bathroom that we had all come to know and love, but it was followed by a very loud whooshing sound. I turned to look out of the window, because that was where the sound was coming from, and right there, with my parents and brother standing on the porch and at my husbands feet a huge gush of water, toilet paper, and other...stuff came hurtling out of a salad plate-sized hole in the ground. It seethed forth, spilling out, up, and over the hole, flooding the ground and spreading outward.

"WHOOOOAAAAAA!" everyone screamed.

"Is that POOPIES?" Inara yelled.

"TP AN' A POOPIE!", Nissa helpfully added.

My parents had turned a sickly shade of green, Yousuf was running away, dry heaving in the bushes, and my brother and I caught each others' expression.

Neither of us were horrified. Not even slightly disgusted - which is saying something, considering the abomination that was spilling out of the hole in the ground before us. As my poor husband retched and my parents covered their innocent grandson's eyes, my brother and I looked at each other, grinning. In one united, crazed, voice we shouted at the top of our lungs, fist-pumping the air as we bellowed,


We're calling it Fatima's Birthday Blowout, and it's going down in Mustafa Family Lore as the best birthday weekend EVER.

(Happy 60th, Mom. Sorry about the poop. Next time let's stay away from the ice cream cake, okay?)

Friday, May 20, 2011

T-ball Practice (And Aftermath).

Inara started playing her first organized sport a couple of weeks ago. We signed her up for our local t-ball league Go Southside Bees! (the kids picked out their own fantastic team name, can't you tell?) and she's loving it. Or rather, she was loving it before it started raining every day for the past two weeks straight and now, for one hour twice a week, my child experiences a total state of transcendent four year-old euphoria BECAUSE SHE GETS COMPLETELY COVERED IN MUD. 

I've never seen a person more intoxicated with joy...when faced with a field of sludge. 

Poor Yousuf is one of Inara's coaches and he gets the unique privilege of herding kids around the swampy outfield ("Third base is inside that puddle! RUUUUUN!"), where the children squelch themselves to happy, mud-covered oblivion and kerSPLASH gigantic tsunami-sized waves of ick all over the coaches. I'm actually considering investing in goggles for the whole team. Yellow ones maybe, to match the whole bee theme Go Southside Goggleheaded Bees! Bzzzzzz!

Nissa and I usually watch from the sidelines, safe and dry in our Wellies...and I have to admit, we do laugh at them. More than a little, even. Oh, stop thinking that I'm such a meanie - you'll be happy to know that I always end up getting my just deserts. 

Guess who has to do all that laundry?

Have a lovely weekend, friends. I hope that your skies stay sunny and that your laundry doesn't look like it just came out of a mud bath...

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Painted Leaves, And Many Things Besides.

I'm still recovering from my weekend/week, friends. We had back to back grandparent visits followed by a field trip for Inara (which I volunteered to help out with before I realized how wiped out I'd be post bday celebrations), which is why this post has taken f-o-r-e-v-e-r to put together. My apologies, but here it finally is, in all it's long-length and glory...


On Nissa's bday (I'm too tired to write out the whole word.), my parents came down from Toronto to visit. It was the first time we'd seen them since they had jetted off on a seven week Tour de South Asia/Middle East. They returned to us with stories of grand adventures, along with a shipping container worth of stuff (I am exaggerating, but only a little.).

Keep in mind that I love my mom and what I am about to write in no way diminishes that feeling. If anything, I am only permitted to say what I am about to say because of how much I love love her.

That being said, my mother is nuts.

My mom and I had numerous conversations before my parents' trip. In particular, she wanted to know what she could bring back for me from the Motherland. Now herein lies the fundamental difference between my mother's and my personality. Sometimes, out of love, my mother will ask me for my opinion on matters, and then again acting out of love, she will completely ignore it.

I have no idea why she does this.

There are many things India is known for. Beautiful clothing, jewelry, exotic spices. But I don't need any of that. All I asked for was some authentic handmade Indian artwork. That's it. Nothing big or fancy, certainly nothing that would cause my mother to pay many hundreds of dollars in excess baggage fees. Just a little bit of art made by some lady in a bazaar somewhere, something that would remind me of my family's history and would fill the empty wall space in our new home. Simple request, right?


I give you...Authentic Hand-Made Ceramic...garlic bulbs?

Followed by Authentic Hand-Made Indian CHILI PEPPERS. Red hot!

I don't know how either of those qualify as art. It's possible that Mom interpreted my request for "kitchen decor" literally. Or maybe she thought I would need to ward off some spice-loving vampires in the near future. 

And that was just the beginning. Here are the clothes she brought back for the kids which I specifically told her NOT to get for us (on a gorgeous, heavenly soft blanket that she brought back from Jaipur, which I do not need but have begun to covet more than life itself. What? I'm fickle.):

I know the set (I think it's pajamas maybe?) looks so summery and sweet, but check out the size of the waistband in the pants. I could barely fit it around the hump of this stuffed camel (which incidentally, is yet another gift from my parents courtesy of a United Arab Emirates souvenir shop. Lucky us!):

That is definitely NOT export quality clothing. In fact, I think clothes like this directly affected my level of self-esteem when I was growing up: "What do you mean you can't pull it up around your ankles? Have you been eating too many samosas again, Mahreen?"

Which is why I told her specifically NOT to bring us back any clothes.

She obviously didn't listen to me. Yeah, I have no idea why a shirt from India has the word "Aloha" written on it, either.

Every set of pj's Mom brought back for her grandgirlies had a picture of a very confused looking little girl on the accompanying label. I bet this poor kid was either having an identity crisis because her clothes (and the brand of the label) were in foreign languages, or she was suffocating from the constriction of the waistband on her pants. Poor dear.

Aloha, Chicita (is that even spelled correctly?)...is "Slant Print" really a selling 
feature of your clothing? How unfortunate.

There were also items the girls went absolutely gaga over, which are coincidentally the same items I am planning on "losing" very shortly. Because I am a horrid, mean mommy and don't want my kids to have any fun at all with:

A real live snake charmer's flute! This thing sounds like an elephant going into labor. No joke. It needs to go.

A picture with the seven sands of the United Arab Emirates (it belongs back in the souvie shop, not in my house where it can be used as a Frisbee to be lobbed at the head of whoever is playing that detestable snake charmer's flute):

This is another present that simply has to go, because it is perhaps the worst toy ever invented in the history of the universe. I'll give you two reasons why:
1. It yells in Arabic when you shake it.
2. And it looks like a mine.

Do we really need to be propagating any more negative Muslim stereotypes, Mom? Do we really? 

It also has cut-out letters of the (English) alphabet on it, except that they are backward (mirror images of what proper letters should look like). 

That just pisses me off. 

My parents got it in Saudi Arabia and guess what? This unfortunate-looking little doohickey (we've been jokingly calling it the Islam-o-ball) was MADE IN CHINA. Oh, mommy. Say it ain't so!

My kids have a lurid fascination with this thing. It scares the living daylights out of them whenever it goes off (okay, so maybe that's not the best choice of words), yet at the same time, they can't get enough of it. I really can't keep it in the house any longer because it's SO FLIPPING LOUD, but I'm not going to let the girls take a screaming Arabic mine outside to play with either. We just moved to this neighborhood and our neighbors still think we're relatively normal. For now.

I'd like to keep it that way for just a little while longer, MOM AND DAD.

To be fair, my mom thought a great deal about picking things which she thought we'd all like, and for that I am immensely appreciative. Granted, there were a lot (!) of misses, but she also brought back some lovely little trinkets that I definitely did not ask for, yet absolutely adore:

Clay bells to hang outside on my porch (they make the most beautiful sound in the wind)...

Strands of enameled elephants! I can't get enough of these. They were meant for Inara's room but I am stealing them to go in the kitchen (take that, tacky ceramic hanging food!):

South Asian nesting dolls. Love love love, and the girls love them too. 

Wacky crazy gypsy twirly skirts that I really don't dig but the girls want to wear them every day for the rest of their lives. Especially during a rain shower, tromping through the muck and mire of a garden center. Extra especially then.

But you know, I think they might be growing on me. They make my kids feel so pretty...

...who knew I had such a little fashion plate?

 Batik stamps?!? I'll take 'em. Think of the crafting potential!

And this isn't even half of the stuff she brought back, guys. You'd be here all day if I shared it all!

My relationship with my parents is...complicated. Most of the time they drive me batty (like when they bring me piles of stuff that I really do not want or need), yet throughout it all, I remain keenly aware that I am blessed. I am blessed with the knowledge of having crazy parents who love me and my family enough to search the world over for doodads that might make us happy. And I am also blessed to have a healthy enough relationship with them to make fun of them for it. It might not always seem like it, but truly, I am thankful for it all.

(I never did get my artwork, though.)

What I originally had in mind when talking to my mom about art for the house was something similar to two pieces my mom has framed at her house. Delicate figures painstakingly hand painted onto Sacred Fig tree leaves, I always found them to be immensely captivating growing up. I thought something like that would be a beautiful conversation piece in my house, as well as a representation of my family's heritage.

My mom said it was next to impossible to find something like that during her trip, and I accepted that. But her explanation also hinted at why she over-compensated with so many gifts for us. I think she felt a little guilty for not being able to fulfill her one entrusted task. 

But she did find something else, a slightly offbeat wood and metal carved piece that she thought might be something I would like. I found it wrapped up in tissue at the almost-bottom of the last huge bag of gifts. It was...interesting.

(I reminded myself that art is subjective. And then I smiled while trying to look grateful.)

Underneath that piece however, were two cloth-wrapped bundles. Mom picked them up gingerly and as she passed them to me she said very quietly, "I'm sorry that I didn't find what you wanted, but I took these down off my walls instead. I want you to have them because I know how much they mean to you."

And they absolutely do. I love them. More than all the things my mom went hunting for overseas. I love them. And of course I feel like such an ungrateful imbecile for looking my gift mom (not a horse by any means!) in the mouth, insulting all of her thoughtful choices, and then on top of everything else, stealing the artwork off of her walls. I wanted to drown my embarrassment in a plateful of samosas right then and there.

So for the record, Mom, I do appreciate you and your over-indulgent ways. And when my girls are all grown up, making fun of everything I do for them, I will listen for the soft voice of karmic retribution reminding me that once - not so long ago - my own mother gladly did the same for me, in spite of me being an ass. And then I will smile for a moment and think of you, Mama. I always, always will...especially when I look at this exquisite Peepal leaf.

I never told you this, Mom, but when I was little, I always thought that the lady on the leaf was mesmerizing because her serene beauty reminded me of you.

Thank you, Mom. Thank you for hearing me, even when I thought you weren't listening.

Oh, and by the way, I happen to have some Authentic Handmade Indian Ceramic Food that would be perfect for filling the spots where your painted leaves used to hang...

Friday, May 13, 2011


Oh hey, lookie here! Blogger is finally BACK! Hallelujah and praise the Chocolate!

So yep, Blogger went AWOL for two days and the whole of the internets went into a near tailspin. You didn't notice, you say? You didn't even MISS ME??

Well fine, then. I'll just slink back into my little corner and...

Awww, who are we kidding here? You could never get rid of me that easily. I'm like that bad spot of hives you get when you're really nervous and you don't want anyone to notice but all that happens is that you repeatedly break out into big gross red bumps that are practically screaming READ MY BLOG! GIVE ME YOUR UNDIVIDED ATTENTION!

In case you were not aware, I'm a bit needy.

Not just when I'm begging people to read this blog, my little home base in a sea of blogs who are all screaming for you attention, but especially when I impose upon your casual interest to ask you to go and read my post today at And Nobody Told Me.

Have I told you lately that I love you?

And that you are beautiful, in every single way?

And I'm out of sappy song lyrics to quote so I'll end here.

(I know you're devastated.)

Have a wonderful, stupendous weekend, friends. I'll be spending it making a dinosaur cake for Nissa, and trying not to be mopey when I think about how fast the past two years have zipped by (which is incidentally, what the topic of my post is today at ANTM).

Trying my darndest to stay present in the moment, and grateful for good friends like you who share my desire to freeze-frame time as it slips away from me like sand...

Three generations of family (my mom in the background, Yousuf pouring and Nissa trying to catch) watching the sand pass through little fingers, 
Not really trying to hold onto it, but not really letting it go either.
Such a unique sensation to feel, and to capture in a photo.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Birthday Songs for Nissa.

Happy Birthday to you,
My two year-old ball of goo,
You look like a little imp,
And you act like one too.

Happy Birthday to independent Issie,
Our sassy tough-girl missy,
I hope you never ever change
We need you to protect your older sissy.

Happy Birthday sweet potato
Your nickname rhymes with tomato
But not much else that I can think of
Other than the island of Tobago.

From Inara:
Happy Birthday to my baby
Sometimes you're so crazy
You are my favorite sister
I'm glad you're not a mister.

Happy Birthday to our goofball
I see you running away and down the hall
You have the largest personality
Even though you're so small.

Happy Birthday, another year's passed
Two years have gone by so fast
I wonder who you are becoming
Watching you grow is such a blast.

Happy Birthday to all that you are
I know that you'll go so far
With your fearless attitude
I don't think you care about getting scars.

She totally jumped off that last step and nearly gave me a heart attack.

From Daddy:
Happy Birthday baby girl
With a head full of curls
Can you please start sleeping through the night
I can't think of another rhyme because I'm so tired.

Happy Birthday to you
And the things you know to be true
Like the pronunciation of "Di-la-saur"
Or how your favorite color is purple 
(but you always call it blue).


Happy Birthday to your smiles
And laughs that go on for miles
I hope that you'll stay the same
At least for a little while.

Happy Birthday today
I'll try not to cry
When I think about how big you are
And how I'm lucky you're mine.

Happy Birthday Nissa - thanks for two years filled with crazy dress-up costumes, manic laughter, 
and more sweet mischief than I ever thought existed.
Love you lotsest, sweet potato.
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