this is my prayer this year

Spent some time in the jacuzzi with hubby. Super relaxing and we just bonded. I love how the conversations never run dry. ❤️

I also had a really solid talk with my parents and my husband about finances and future plans to buy a house. We pretty much established we would be living at home through to next year as we continue to pay off debt and save. It took a load of stress off of my shoulders to have my parents “in the know” and on the same page. I don’t feel filled with anxiety anymore.

I feel like that conversation was a prayer being answered.

Prayer to Our Mother of Perpetual Help

O Mother of Perpetual Help, grant that I may ever invoke thy most powerful name, which is the safeguard of the living and the salvation of the dying. O Purest Mary, O Sweetest Mary, let thy name henceforth be ever on my lips. Delay not, O Blessed Lady, to help me whenever I call on thee, for, in all my needs, in all my temptations I shall never cease to call on thee, ever repeating thy sacred name, Mary, Mary.

O what consolation, what sweetness, what confidence, what emotion fill my soul when I pronounce thy sacred name, or even only think of thee. I thank God for having given thee, for my good, so sweet, so powerful, so lovely a name. But I will not be content with merely pronouncing thy name: let my love for thee prompt me ever to hail thee, Mother of Perpetual Help.

Mother of Perpetual Help, pray for me and grant me the favor I confidently ask of thee. (mention your petitions here.) Amen.

washingtonpost.com
Opinion | What happened when an Orthodox Jewish congregation went to a gay bar to mourn Orlando
The Orlando attack fell during Shavuot, a joyous Jewish holiday.

When our synagogue heard about the horrific tragedy that took place at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, it was at the same time that we were celebrating our festival of Shavuot, which celebrates God’s giving of the Torah.

As Orthodox Jews, we don’t travel or use the Internet on the Sabbath or on holidays, such as Shavuot. But on Sunday night, as we heard the news, I announced from the pulpit that as soon as the holiday ended at 9:17 p.m. Monday, we would travel from our synagogue in Northwest Washington to a gay bar as an act of solidarity.

We just wanted to share the message that we were all in tremendous pain and that our lives were not going on as normal. Even though the holiday is a joyous occasion, I felt tears in my eyes as I recited our sacred prayers.

I had not been to a bar in more than 20 years. And I had never been to a gay bar. Someone in the congregation told me about a bar called the Fireplace, so I announced that as our destination. Afterward, I found out it was predominantly frequented by gay African Americans.

Approximately a dozen of us, wearing our kippot, or yarmulkes, went down as soon as the holiday ended. Some of the members of our group are gay, but most are not. We did not know what to expect. As we gathered outside, we saw one large, drunk man talking loudly and wildly. I wondered whether we were in the right place. Then my mother, who was with me, went up to a man who was standing on the side of the building. She told him why we were there. He broke down in tears and told us his cousin was killed at Pulse. He embraced us and invited us into the Fireplace.

We didn’t know what to expect, but it turned out that we had so much in common. We met everyone in the bar. One of the patrons told me that his stepchildren were actually bar-mitzvahed in our congregation. Another one asked for my card so that his church could come and visit. The bartender shut off all of the music in the room, and the crowd became silent as we offered words of prayer and healing. My co-clergy Maharat Ruth Friedman shared a blessing related to the holiday of Shavuot, and she lit memorial candles on the bar ledge. Then everyone in the bar put their hands around each other’s shoulders, and we sang soulful tunes. After that, one of our congregants bought a round of beer for the whole bar.

Everyone in the bar embraced each other. It was powerful and moving and real and raw.

After that we moved to the outdoor makeshift memorial service at Dupont Circle. There, too, we did not know what to expect. But as we gathered around the circle, people kept coming up to us and embracing us. One man we met there told us that his daughter sometimes prays with us. Others were visiting from Los Angeles but joined in full voice, clearly knowing the Hebrew words to the song we were singing.

As we were singing, I looked over at some gay members of our congregation and saw tears flowing down their faces. I felt the reality that we are living in a time of enormous pain. But I also felt that the night was a tremendous learning experience for me. I learned that when a rabbi and members of an Orthodox synagogue walk into a gay African American bar, it is not the opening line of a joke but an opportunity to connect; it is an opportunity to break down barriers and come together as one; it is an opportunity to learn that if we are going to survive, we all need each other.

I don’t think this article got very much traction last year, but I wanted to share it again.

anonymous asked:

you antifa guys are actually more hateful and violent than any neo nazi group in the 21st century. its fucking disgusting and you should be branded as terrorists just as much as the KKK

We’d usually just block you, Anon, but we’re going to use your message as a reminder of where the violence is coming from in 2017.  Off the top of our heads, here’s what the year has looked like so far:

January 20, 2017: A right-wing extremist shoots a protestor at a Milo Yiannopoulos event at the University of Washington. 

January 29, 2017
: Alexandre Bissonnette walks into a mosque in Canada during evening prayers and opens fire, shooting 17 people and killing six of them.

January 2017: Over 40 Jewish centers in the U.S. receive bomb threats.

 February 22, 2017:  Adam Purinton tells two men from India to “get out of my country” then shoots both plus a bystander, killing one.

February 28, 2017: a mosque in Toronto is set on fire by arsonists.

March 12, 2017: a mosque in Ypsilanti, MI. is set on fire by arsonists.

March 20, 2017: James Jackson arrives in Manhattan with a sword and stabs the first black man he sees to death.  He later tells authorities he “intended to kill as many black men as he could.”

March 24, 2017: Yelling “I hate Muslims!” a man in Minneapolis stabbed a Somali man in an attempt to kill him.  

March 26, 2017: A racist mob attacks a 15-year-old Polish boy in Gloucestershire and, when a local Asian shopkeeper tries to intervene, attack him as well with crowbars and baseball bats, then attempt to run him over with a car.

March 31, 2017: A 17-year-old Iranian/Kurdish boy is nearly beaten to death by a mob of eight people in Croydon after he revealed to them that he was a refugee.

April 6, 2017: A Charlotte store is set on fire by an arsonist who leaves a warning message for the shop owner that he “did not want any refugee business owners and that they would torture the owner if they did not leave and go back to where they came from,” according to police.  It was signed “White America.”

MAY 5TH: EDITED TO INCLUDE:

April 30, 2017: A  white man storms a pool party in San Diego and shoots four black women, two black men, and one Latino man while allowing white attendees to leave.  One victim dies while the other six sustain critical injuries.


MAY 10TH: EDITED TO INCLUDE:

May 5, 2017: A man walking his dog on South Beach in Miami is confronted by two men who call him a “fucking faggot,” then attack him, beating him unconscious.  At one point in the attack, one of the attackers shouts  “all faggots need to die and we’re going to make sure they do!”

MAY 18TH: EDITED TO INCLUDE:

May 14, 2017: Vandals spray-paint hate graffiti on the home of a black family in upstate New York before attempting to set the house on fire while the family slept.  Although the family escaped unscathed, their garage burnt to the ground and their house suffered some damage.

May 17, 2017: A homophobic mob break into the home of a gay couple and shoot and stab both men to death.  

MAY 23RD: EDITED TO INCLUDE:

May 20, 2017: University of Maryland student and member of the “alt-Reich” facebook group Sean Urbanski walks up to 22-year-old Richard Collins III, who is black and who Urbanski does not know, and stabs him to death in an unprovoked attack. 

May 27th: EDITED TO INCLUDE:

May 24, 2017: A barrage of doxxing, rape threats, and death threats received by trans comic book artist Sophie Labelle forces her to cancel an appearance and event at a Halifax book store, which also received bomb threats and threats of attacking the event.  Labelle is forced into hiding.

May 26, 2017: Three men intervene on a MAX train in Portland when they witness another man verbally abusing two Muslim women with an Islamophobic tirade.  The Islamophobe responds by pulling out a knife and stabs the three interveners, killing two of them.  

MAY 30th: EDITED TO INCLUDE:

May 27, 2017: A white man drives his pickup truck through a campsite, targeting the Native Americans camping there while yelling racial slurs at them.  He intentionally drives over two Native American men, killing one and injuring the other.

June 3rd: EDITED TO INCLUDE:

March 3, 2017: A Sikh man is shot and injured in front of his Seattle house by a white man waring a mask, who yells at him to “go back to your country!”

May 27, 2017: A 34-year-old Anthony Hammond lets loose with a flurry of racial slurs directed at a black man in a parking lot, then pulls out a machete and stabs the man before barricading himself in his apartment for several hours, until finally surrendering to police.

JUNE 13th: EDITED TO INCLUDE:

January 1, 2017: 19-year-old Nathan Richardson encounters 67-year-old jogger Wenqing Xu and beats him to death in an unprovoked, random attack.  After committing the murder, Richardson texted his friends that he “fucked sum chink up. Bodied him. I think pure crime scene – his head’s gone,”

JUNE 19TH: EDITED TO INCLUDE:

June 18, 2017: two men armed with baseball bats attack a group of Muslim teenagers, kidnapping a 17-year-old girl, who they beat to death, dumping her body in a pond.

June 1, 2017: A Princeton professor and racialized woman is forced to cancel a three-city lecture tour to promote her book about the Black Lives Matter movement after receiving over 50 death threats.

June 19, 2017: Shouting “I’m going to kill all Muslims!” 47-year-old Darren Osborne drives a courier van through a crowd of Muslims leaving a Finsbury mosque, killing one person and injuring ten others.


In case you have trouble counting, Anon, that’s three four five six shootings, three four arsons, two three four seven eight stabbings, two three four mob beatings, and over 40 41 bomb threats by bigots, Islamophobes, nazis and racists so far this year.  Eight Nine Eleven Twelve Fourteen Fifteen Sixteen Seventeen Eighteen people are dead because of these bigoted attacks and fifteen twenty-one twenty-two twenty-three twenty-five thirty-five were severely injured.  

But it’s anti-fascists that people should be worried about, right?

“you should be branded as terrorists just as much as the KKK“ 

Really, now?  Anti-fascists are as much terrorists as the KKK, a terrorist organization which murdered over 3000 people in lynchings, arsons, bombings, etc. over its 150-year history, are we? 

Maybe it’s time you learned about the logical fallacy of false equivalence, Anon!

  

So, I really need help

The city of flint are issuing out liens for water bills, and are actually seizing homes for unpaid bills. I’ve been paying 20% of this inflated bill every month, but they sent me a lien anyway and they’ve started taking homes and i’m really at wits end. I’ve just finished paying off two bills, and they purposely delay mailing the letters out with an earlier date to fuck people up and it’s just an extremely shady situation; the entire city hall staff has been MIA since a town meeting; there are dwindling cases of water and water stations are supposed to end in a few months. No pipework has been done at all, and we’re still forced to either pay for this tainted water or lose our homes, and i’m terrified. I really need help.

The city is talking about my inflated total is 1541.00 due by the 19th of May, I’m going downtown first thing in the morning to contest this but I’m terrified – they’ve already taken the home of some folks i went to high school with, for a bill of just 500 man. This shit is just so dirty and frustrating man, they putting entire families out on the streets and they took back the water credits Snyder promised us last year man. Like please, I really need any help I can get I’m talking with my job to get a 2 weeks advance but I’m terrified man. If you can spread the word or donate to beiialedge@aol.com, i’d be so fucking grateful. Please, just keep me and this city in your prayers man

jason checking the big 3 kids
  • jason at thalia: wonderful as always thals. getting edgier every year i expected nothing less from my own blood
  • jason at hazel: *touches hair* adorable and beautiful
  • jason at percy: bro if only i was gay... *clutches chest*
  • jason at nico: *closes eyes* *breathes heavily* *prayer hands to the gods* *aggressively blows kisses* friggin masterpiece!!! bless hades for creating this angel

I don’t want to only praise God on the good days, when I’m filled to the brim with light, when everything is going well. I want to praise God on the hard days, too, when my flame is just a flicker, when almost everything goes wrong. I want to praise God, praise Jesus, every second of every hour of every day of every week of every month of every year of this beautiful, beautiful life He has given me. 

  • Person I don't fuck with: lol I'll continue to pray for you.
  • Me: Please don't. You're life is so messy and you've been praying for yourself for years. Keep your witchcraft prayers to yourself.
8

“HOW CAN YOU HAVE A WAR ON TERRORISM WHEN WAR ITSELF IS TERRORISM?” - HOWARD ZINN

My thoughts and prayers are with everyone who is a victim of such senseless violence around the world. We must condemn terrorism in all its forms. We must condemn violence, inequality, racism, misogyny, xenophobia, bigotry, and hatred in every form. We must find another way to co-exist peacefully on this planet. Right now people around the world are stuck in perpetual warfare, where the arms and weapons industry makes billions of dollars from conflicts. Where young people attending a concert can be brutally killed and never return home. Where an innocent 12 year old black child can be murdered by a police officer. Where two men trying to protect two muslim girls can die at the hands of a white supremacist. We are not safer because of this endless cycle of violence and ignorance. Do not let hate divide us. Do not let hate win.

Seattle Rains

Originally posted by dailycwriverdale

Pairing: Jughead x Reader

Description: A new girl brings rainstorms to Riverdale, and more specifically, more rain in Jughead’s world.

Warnings: none

Word count: 1,844

A/N: I’m sorry I haven’t been writing requests, but this idea popped in my head and I decided to write it.  Hope you all enjoy!


He only saw her when it was raining.  Maybe it was pure coincidence, or maybe it was a sign.

The first time he met her was a rainy Monday afternoon.  It was the first day of their freshman year in Riverdale High.  Jughead continuously announced to anxiety-ridden Archie and Betty that he was not nervous at all.  He would never admit it, but there was a twinge of fear in his stomach as he walked through the doors of his new school.

The day became a blur in his memories, nothing especially memorable occurring.  Except one thing: her.

(Y/N) had just moved to Riverdale from Seattle, so her rainy first day of school in a small town helped her transition from the large city she was used to.  She sat in her last class of the day, English, when the rain began to pour even harder.  Right as the bell signaling the beginning of class rang, one last boy walked through the door.

Jughead knew that, by being late, he wouldn’t get a seat in the back of the classroom that he craved.  There was only one vacant seat left next to a girl he didn’t recognize.  He sat down next to her, slumping in his chair.

“You’re new, aren’t you?” he whispered as the teacher explained the syllabus.  (Y/N)’s head shifted to look at him out of the corner of her eye, shocked that someone had spoken to her.  She had been ignored all day.

“Yeah,” she confirmed his suspicions.  "How did you know?“

"This is a small town,” Jughead answered.  "Everyone knows everyone.“

"Right,” she muttered, turning her focus back to the teacher.  Jughead, however, continued to stare at the new girl.

“I’m Jughead,” he introduced himself.  "Jughead Jones the third.“

"The third?” (Y/N) quietly laughed.

Jughead shrugged.  "Yeah,“ he responded.  A smile grew on his face.  "It’s funny, though, because most people laugh at my name being Jughead.”

“I think it’s cool,” she complimented.  "I’m (Y/N).“

"Well, (Y/N),” Jughead said, “what’s the-”

“Mr. Jones!” their teacher suddenly interrupted their conversation.  "Ms. (Y/L/N)! Please, no talking while I’m speaking!“

Jughead and (Y/N) muttered ashamed apologies, and with a satisfied nod, the teacher turned back to the board.  Jughead shifted in his chair so that he was slightly facing (Y/N).

"I was gonna ask what’s the best burger you’ve ever eaten,” he explained quietly.  "But that’s a stupid question, because I’m gonna introduce you to a burger that’ll put every other thing you’ve ever eaten to shame.“

"Oh really?”

“Definitely,” he smirked.  "Have you ever been to Pop’s diner?“


The rain reduced to a drizzle as Jughead and (Y/N) walked from school to Pop’s.

"You’re sure you don’t need an umbrella?” Jughead asked for the hundredth time.

(Y/N) laughed, “For the last time, Jughead, I’m fine.  I’m from Seattle; I can handle a bit of rain.”

Jughead’s umbrella offers died down after that, and the two quickly arrived at Pop’s.  They entered the diner, Jughead leading her towards his favorite booth. He sent subtle waves towards all the beaming waitresses who greeted him.

“Someone’s popular,” (Y/N) commented as she and Jughead sat down across from each other.

“I come here quite often,” he shrugged.  

A waitress approached the table and asked for their orders.  Immediately, before (Y/N) could even open her mouth, Jughead ordered two cheeseburgers.  About ten minutes later, the same waitress carried out two baskets.  She set one in front of both Jughead and (Y/N).  Jughead watched as (Y/N) picked up her burger.

“Are you gonna eat yours?” she asked before she took her first bite.

Jughead shook his head. “Not until I see your reaction,” he said, biting back a smirk.  (Y/N) shrugged and nonchalantly took a bite.  As her tongue registered the beautifully charred beef mixed with the freshly melted cheddar, topped with refreshing tomatoes and lettuce, Jughead broke out into a grin.  

“This is so good,” she moaned, taking more bites of her burger.

“I told you,” Jughead laughed.

“We’re gonna come back here every day and get these, right?” (Y/N) asked, between burger bites. Jughead’s grin widened.

“Whenever you want.”


Riverdale was rainy for that entire week.  On Thursday, their English teacher assigned their first project of the year, splitting the class into pairs.  As if answering both of their prayers, the English teacher paired up (Y/N) and Jughead. They decided to start the project that night, agreeing to meet at (Y/N)’s house.

“I’m sorry about all the boxes,” (Y/N) apologized as they entered her bedroom.  “I still haven’t finished unpacking.”

“It’s no problem at all,” Jughead waved it off.  “My place is even messier, and I can’t make up excuses about having just moved here.” (Y/N) laughed and shook her head, sitting on her bed.  Jughead chose to remain standing, scanning (Y/N)’s room.  He glanced at her pastel blue walls, the simply-framed windows covered by pale white curtains.  He walked in front of the window.

“I think you brought Seattle weather with you to Riverdale,” Jughead commented, pulling (Y/N)’s wispy curtains aside to look at the rainstorm outside her window.  She rose from her bed and walked over to stand next to him.

“Good,” she muttered.  He turned to face her and raised his eyebrows. “I like the rain.”

“So do I,” he agreed, “but this is excessive.”

“No such thing.”


Even without the project, Jughead and (Y/N) frequently met up.  Whether it be the drive in, (Y/N)’s house, or Pop’s, the two always tried to make time for each other.

A month after they met, Jughead decided to introduce (Y/N) to his other two best friends: Archie and Betty.  

It was drizzling on a Wednesday when they met in Pop’s, both Archie and Betty immediately adoring (Y/N).

“You must be (Y/N),” Betty smiled, sticking out her hand to shake.  (Y/N) beamed as she happily shook Betty’s hand.  “I’m Betty Cooper.”

“And I’m Archie Andrews,” Archie greeted, choosing to simply wave at (Y/N) rather than shake her hand.

“I’m (Y/N),” she introduced herself, laughing, “but it seems that you already knew that.”

“Jughead talks about you a lot,” Betty giggled, causing (Y/N) to smirk at Jughead.

“Oh really?” she inquired, and Jughead rolled his eyes.

“She’s never gonna let that go,” he complained to Betty and Archie.  “Thanks a lot.”

The four quickly fell into a casual conversation, (Y/N) fitting into the friend group with ease. It felt like she had always been with them in Riverdale.  Archie and Betty noticed the obvious chemistry between her and Jughead, and throughout the dreary evening, Archie and Betty exchanged knowing glances as they observed (Y/N) and Jughead’s interactions.  Neither of them said anything, but instead, they chose to just sit and watch Jughead and (Y/N) slowly but surely fall in love.


After two more months, Betty and Archie grew frustrated with the lack of progression in Jughead and (Y/N)’s relationship.  Riverdale had grown too cold for it to rain anymore, but the snow, in Jughead’s mind, still counted as rain.  It was only frozen.

He hadn’t seen (Y/N) in a while outside of school, both of them too busy.  (Y/N) became buried under her heavy academic burden, and Jughead grew immersed in his writing.  They hadn’t grown apart, they just didn’t grow any closer, much to Betty and Archie’s dismay.


A bitter and cold February passed through Riverdale, and it was during that month that (Y/N) finally met Kevin Keller.  It had been four months since Betty and (Y/N) had met, and the two of them grew very close.  Not as close as (Y/N) and Jughead, but Betty was definitely (Y/N)’s go-to girl.  

“You’re gonna love Kevin,” Betty assured her as they sat in Betty’s pastel pink room.  

“If you insist,” (Y/N) smiled.  A light knock on the door caught their attention, and they whipped their heads around to see Kevin entering Betty’s bedroom.

“I finally have the privilege to meet the famous (Y/N) (Y/L/N),” he grinned.

“Kevin Keller,” she laughed. “It’s nice to finally meet you.”

“Likewise,” he said, sitting down next to her.  “God, I’ve been dying to meet you ever since Betty started talking about how cute you and Jughead were together.”

“Together?” she lightly scoffed, playfully rolling her eyes.  “Jughead and I are just friends.”

“And you like it that way?” Betty questioned with a smile tugging at her lips.

(Y/N) hesitated for a split second.  “Of course,” she answered.

“You hesitated,” Kevin immediately noted.  (Y/N) released an exasperated sigh.

“I don’t know,” she shrugged.  “I never really thought about it that way.”

“Well maybe you should start considering it,” Betty suggested.  “I’ve known Jughead for years, and I’ve never seen him look at someone the way he looks at you.”


The rest of winter breezed through, and soon April showers began to roll into Riverdale.  It was the rainiest spring they ever had, but it came to no shock to Jughead.  He stood by his belief that (Y/N) brought the Seattle rain with her.

With spring came more free time for (Y/N) and Jughead, allowing them to begin to meet up more often. Their relationship picked up where they had just left off, except with a small alteration.  Jughead couldn’t quite pick up what had changed between the two of them, but (Y/N) knew exactly what it was.

They sat in her bedroom again.  It was a typical scene, but something was different.  The sun was out for what felt like the first time since they met.  Something had shifted in their relationship, and neither (Y/N) nor Jughead knew how to express it.

“The sun’s out,” Jughead gave his daily weather report.  (Y/N)’s eyes lazily flicked towards her window, watching the beams of light float into her room.

“Yes,” she replied simply.

“I don’t think it’s been sunny since you’ve moved here,” he joked, forcing out a laugh.  (Y/N)’s fingers twiddled with the soft fabric of her bed.  Jughead sighed at her lack of response.  They sat in silence for a couple minutes, Jughead continuing to stare out the window and (Y/N) fidgeting on her bed.  Finally, (Y/N) stood up and crossed her arms over her chest as she ventured next to Jughead.

“It was very rude, you know,” she drawled, earning a confused look from Jughead, “that you made me fall in love with you.  Inconsiderate, really.”

A split second of silence passed as Jughead tried to collect his wits.

“Not what you had in mind?”  He smirked.

(Y/N) shrugged.  "Quite inconvenient, actually.“

"I’m not sorry,” he stated, stepping closer to her. He tenderly placed a hand on her cheek.

“Me neither,” she whispered, her gaze focused on his lips.

Without any more hesitation, Jughead brought (Y/N)’s face towards his and pressed his lips against hers, just a feather-light kiss.  She wrapped her arms around his neck in a desperate attempt to deepen the kiss, like a flower craving the thirst-quenching rain.

“You know,” Jughead disconnected their lips, “I lied about liking the rain.”

“Really?”

“Yeah,” he nodded, smiling.  "I just pretended to like it for you.  I actually hate the rain.“

Keep reading

Can we talk about Pulse?

Can we talk about the Pulse shooting? I mean, today is the 1 year anniversary.
I heard about Pulse when I was out of the country, in India. I was home alone- My aunt had gone to work and our housekeeper had just left, and was looking at the news on CNN when I heard. 

Immediately afterward, I found people taking to Twitter and Tumblr, and Instagram, posting prayers and updates and condolences. I also found people who were angry at the fact that it had been labeled the largest American mass shooting in history, stating that POC were shot in larger numbers in the past. To those people, as a WOC, I have to say, there is a time and place, and that was not the time to start. 

In complete honesty, I started crying, and the more I thought about it, the harder I cried, which at the time, seemed absurd- why would a teenage girl with no family or friends in Florida cry? It didn’t affect me, right?

Well, in the days following it, I began to understand. A community I am a part of was specifically targeted. And despite the fact that 49 people were killed, there were still people who would say that we deserved it, or that we had it coming because of who we are. That made me feel completely and totally alone. It launched me into a pit of self-loathing- how bad were we if people wouldn’t stand with us, even after that many people had died?

It’s been a year, and I’m still learning how to accept myself, but I have learned one thing. As a community, we are strong. We are loving. We will stick together. And we will support each other as much as we can.  

Our hearts may be broken, but our pulse is strong. 

Anastasia  {Sentence Starters}

  • “It’s a perfect ending.”
  • “Men are such babies.”
  • “We’re going to a party!”
  • “How will we get through this?”
  • “Don’t turn back now that we’re here.”
  • “Years of dreams just can’t be wrong!”
  • “And to think, that could have been you.”
  • “Say your prayers! No one can save you!”
  • “Stop it! From the very beginning, you lied!”
  • “Will you please remove him from my sight?”
  • “That, uh, that dress looks really good on you.”
  • “And the nightmare I had was as bad as can be.”
  • “If we live through this, remind me to thank you.”
  • “Change of mind? It was more a change of heart.”
  • “It’s just that you look an awful lot like… never mind.”
  • “Then I opened my eyes and the nightmare was me.”
  • “Please don’t talk anymore. It’s only going to upset me.”
  • “Thank goodness for the gossip that gets us through the day!”
  • “Things my heart used to know, things it yearns to remember…”
  • “Do you really think I’m royalty? Then stop bossing me around!”
  • “You’re a very good actress, best yet in fact. But I’ve had enough.”
  • “I’d give her a HA! And a HI-YA! And then a OOH-WAH! And I’d kick her.”
  • “Oh, sorry!! I thought you were someone el - oh, it’s you. Well, that’s okay, then.”
  • “What? Hey - why are you circling me? What, were you a vulture in another life?”
  • “Ooh, I could teach you the latest dance step. It starts with, like, a ‘whoa’. And then you get really crazy with the hips!”

InShaAllah, this Ramadan will mark 5 years since I started praying Salah regularly…

I’m not posting this to brag or show off, but to hopefully help every one who is struggling with praying their salah.

Before I even started praying I used to sit on social media all day, I’d post a few Qur’an ayah here and there, and I used to feel as though what I am doing as a muslim was enough. That my imaan was growing because of my social media posts. It wasn’t.

I used to keep getting into islamic debates online, I’d argue against non-muslims and defend Islam against terrorism, I’d debate with brothers and sisters about ‘what is hijab’, and about music, and about all sorts of other things - the typical arguments you see online. I had a lot of things going on in my life and I used to vent my frustration online… to random people - but it never gave me peace. 

I would sit on the computer and watch islamic lectures on youtube, about the history of Islam, about marriage, about famous muslims from the past, about the importance of Salah, but the irony was I would watch these videos on salah, while neglecting the times of prayer. - I still couldn’t find peace, I was always moody and used to keep my distance with my family.

Ramadan 2012 was around the corner, I used to see these posts about ‘Ramadan muslims’ and how certain muslims will only act religious in Ramadan and not any other time of the year - It frustrated me even more, as I felt that I was one of those people. So I set myself a goal. I used Ramadan as a catalyst. I prayed all Salah during Ramadan and used that motivation to continue after Ramadan. I tried my best. Every single Salah I tried my best to pray.

I focused on my Fajr Salah first, if I could wake up for Fajr, then the other four should be a piece of cake. So I was there, I never missed a single Salah for a whole year - and with it I felt more peace around me, I felt closer to my family as well.

I won’t lie to you, after the first year, I kind of slacked with my Salah, I missed one fajr, and then began delaying certain prayers through the day - but I would still make sure I made up for them. Even if I wasn’t on time, I would do my best to pray the missed salah - it started having an effect on me as a person again, I started getting moody at times, and lost my temper easily. 

Alhamdulillah, for the past few weeks I’ve been striving to pray on time again, especially now that Ramadan is here. So I just want to tell anyone that has difficulty with their prayers, and get told they are just ‘Ramadan Muslims’ - don’t worry, this could be the year you start praying every single salah. Just keep yourself motivated. Ramadan is the best time to make that change. Everyone has a starting point, but I want to say something; it may be cliche, but I can honestly say I have seen the benefit in my life, as a person, that salah has helped me gain more patience.

If you’re not praying salah on time, or are missing it, do your best and you will see how much your life improves.

May Allah make it easy for us.

Evermore (Reprise) NEW LYRICS

I wanted to hear a reprise but didn’t get one, so I wrote my own.

THIS IS THE UPDATED VERSION WITH THE SAME NUMBER OF STANZAS AS THE ORIGINAL

READ IT ON AO3 HERE (hit me with a kudos if you liked it! depending on the reception, I might do a reprise for Days in the Sun…)

*      *      *

I was the one who lost it all

I thought that it had been too late

I never dreamed she would come back into my life

And free me from that state


Too long I only felt the pain

For years all I knew was despair

Then she reached deep into my melancholy heart

And answered my soul’s prayer


Now I know she’ll never leave me

Even at the end of days

She will still inspire me,

Stay beside me,

Love me, come what may

And with every passing hour

I can’t help but love her more

I smile to think she walked back in

To be with me for evermore


My life has suddenly begun

I see the dawning of the light

When I lost all hope of living days in the sun

Her love has banished night


Now I know she’ll never leave me

Something fate cannot undo

I promise to love her

Be there for her

Never say adieu

And with every passing hour

I can’t help but love her more


I should have known that love would win

And as these sunny days begin

I’ll think of how she walked back in

To be with me for evermore

*       *      *

Bonus points if you can spot the references! (Four to two other songs in BatB AND a reference to the new BatB book Lost In A Book)

LGBT movies I recommend!

Brokeback Mountain 

(I really hope you have already seen this tho, its a classic. Jake Gyllenhaal and Heath Ledger plays two shepherds falling in love in 1960 Wyoming)

Jongens 

(Dutch, two teenage boys fall in love and deals with it) 

Freier Fall 
(German, two police officers, one with a baby on the way, develops feelings for one another. One of my favourite movies of all time) 

Keep reading

A Crow Looked At Me is not only a stark portrait of grief but also a love story of 13 years. “I’ll speak to your absence and carry our stories around my whole life,” he sings over what sounds like a breathing machine on “My Chasm,” lost in loss and repeating her memory like a prayer, or really, a conversation that’s still ongoing. But just as Elverum disarms with devotion, he later attempts to find some humor in his pain just moments later with a self-deprecating admission: “I now wield the power to transform a grocery store aisle into a canyon of pity and confusion and mutual aching to leave.”

First Listen: Mount Eerie, ‘A Crow Looked At Me’

Image: Allyson Foster/Courtesy of the artist