Bismillah,

The following is a really intersting article that I found online about happenings in Saudi... At first, after reading it, I laughed!
To be honest, I've heard some really over-the-top stories about the Hai'a, or as they're more "affectionately" termed, the Muttawwa! And I've also witnessed some of their "da'wah" techniques in malls and other public places that are not so pleasant to describe.
So after laughing hard for about 20 seconds, I thought to myself, awwwww, how sweet mashAllah! I especially loved the last part of the article.
I'm still quite shocked at the outcome, and I guess it just proves that you can't slap a general label on a group of people without realising that there is khayr (good) in everything.
I don't want to keep you in suspense any longer, so read on and do let me know what you think!!!


Hai’a nabs young couple – and leaves them happier than ever!

Baha – A young Saudi couple out on a date and caught in illegal seclusion by the Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice was clearly in for some serious trouble. But, as it transpired, the officials of the Commission, commonly known as the Hai’a, not only gave them a patient hearing but also got them married off on the same evening here in the Baha region, southwest of the Kingdom.
“I never expected to get married just like that, so easily,” said the groom who is unemployed. The Hai’a officials were moved by the young couple’s love and plight – they had no money to finalize their marriage ceremony – and so offered to help. They called the girl’s father who approved of the marriage and even offered to bear some of the expenses.
That settled, the Hai’a then got the two to take and clear the mandatory pre-marital tests for hereditary and life-threatening diseases such as AIDS, and conducted the wedding ceremony that very evening.
Sheikh Abdulmohsin Al-Qarni, chief of the Hai’a Office in Al-Irdiya Al-Junoubiya in the Baha region, donated the dowry amount.
“Had not the Hai’a offered to help me, I would have never got married,” the groom said. Okaz/SG

Taken from the Saudi Gazette
Bismillah,
I've been incredibly busy these days and am now at a point where i can share my news with you!
*deep breath...*

After the overwhelming response to my abaya collection, I've decided to take the responses to a new level.

I am launching a new website business, Insha'Allah, that will showcase my abayas to the world!

Anyone can order any of my abayas from my website, and I will be able to ship them directly to the person.
All of the abayas on my blog will be featured on the website, as well as others that I've collected since then.

Customers will have the option to customise the abayas, according to their specifications.

My email will also be available to everyone so that they can contact me with special requests or anything else that they might need.

Sooo, my website will be up and running, Inshallah in about 3 weeks, all going well!

I will keep you updated, and ofcourse, I'll be posting up the link as soon as I get it!

Sisters in Canada, if you'd prefer to save on the cost of shipping, then you might like to wait till this summer, when I make a trip to Toronto!

Non-Muslims are all welcome and I know a lot of Western women in the Gulf like to wear trendy abayas, regardless of their religion.

Please make dua for me, Insha'Allah this business venture goes well. By the Mercy and Blessings of Allah (swt), I would like to be able to expand my business to a larger product portfolio.
Keep your comments, requests and input coming... I'm making a list of all of those who have contacted me "you know who you are!" and I will be contacting you personally, as soon as my website is up!


Bismillah,

It started raining in Riyadh on Wednesday. At first it was light, but then yesterday it started pouring and slowly the streets started filling up. The road outside our building turned into a river of fast moving water, and I watched in fascination as it thundered and poured all afternoon and evening. People from the surrounding buildings were all standing outside, watching the rain come down and roads that were slowly turning into deep lakes and rivers. My husband's friend had come over for lunch after Juma, and he stayed with us until Ishaa. Around 9pm, we decided to drop him home and we drove to his building, which is only a 5 min drive from our place. That drive slowly turned into a moving disaster. Getting to his place wasn't too much of a hassle, as the main highway was clear. After dropping him off, we drove back in the direction of our building, unfortunately we couldn't take the highway back, so we decided to go through the side streets. It got much worse as we tried to navigate through the water-filled roads that were about 1 and 1/2 feet deep in certain places, and yes, we have a sedan so we weren't happy campers at all!

The worst happened when we tried to drive by a construction site, and due to the high water level, we didn't know what the road underneath looked like. All of a sudden, we heard a horrible grinding noise, and the front-left side of the car sunk into the water, at a freakishly steep angle; we were properly stuck... We then noticed smoke rising from our hood, so my husband turned off the engine, switched on the hazard lights, and tried to figure out what to do. We had apparently driven into an unmarked ditch of some sort. We tried opening our doors and exiting the car, but the water was too deep, so we couldn't go anywhere. My husband started calling various co-workers and family, but strangely enough, no one was answering their phone. After about 20 minutes of sitting and trying to figure things out, a car passed by and slowed to take a look. The car had about 5 young Saudi youth who were in their early 20's, dressed in traditional white thobes and shemaghs. They spoke to my husband in Arabic and he explained that he was stuck in a ditch and the car wasn't moving. They immediately pulled over on higher ground, got out of their car and took off their sandals, pulled up their thobes and held it in their teeth, rolled up their underpants and started wading into the muddy, dirty water towards us! At this point I was feeling a mixture of embarrassment and relief.

My husband remarked to me in the car, "these guys are too skinny, they won't be able to pull the car out, we need a tow truck." In any case, they instructed him to put the car in reverse and they tried pulling from the back, lifting and pushing from the front, and a variety of other tactics that included all five of them, at one point, climbing into the trunk of the car and jumping in it...
Luckily, their presence was extremely beneficial, as an SUV happened to drive by with towing capabilities and a tow rope, and they were able to stop him and ask him for his services. He pulled us out of the ditch and didn't even wait for our thank you, just drove away as if it were a normal turn of events!
And when we tried to thank the Saudi guys, they were too busy wading in the water and trying to cover up the ditch in order to prevent others from suffering the same fate!
We did manage yell out a thank you, which they promptly waved off and quickly returned to the water to finish off their job.

We reversed out of the lane and drove back onto the main road, in an attempt to return home with minimal problems. Just when we thought we were in the clear, we noticed that the only road that leads to our building, was now full of water, almost about 2 feet deep and that all the traffic that was attempting to drive down the road had two wheels on the sidewalk, and two wheels in the water. It is also important to mention that all of the traffic were either SUVS, pickups or passenger vans.
My husband maneuvered the car towards the side of the road, right next to the sidewalk, where the water level was the lowest, and we slowly tried driving through the water. We passed a few cars that had gotten stuck and had turned off in the water, and we slowly reached the end of the road.
Thankfully we made it home without any problems and our car was alright, but it was an extremely close call. I keep on wondering what would've happened if it wasn't for the Saudi youth that were so eager and quick in their desire to help us, regardless of their own circumstances. Alhamdulilah, I'm really grateful to them for their help and it is really comforting to know that there are people like them in this country.

Apart from our latest mis-adventure, things are really starting to settle down and are looking good in Riyadh. I do have other interesting topics to discuss soon, and I am hunting down a good tailor these days, so that I can start answering lots of those abaya requests that are waiting for me!
That's it for now