I have been so bad about sketching lately and it feels like I have created so many excuses to avoid giving myself the chance to take a step back and carve out time to appreciate the every day in pictures. I have, however, been capturing the world using an alternative medium – through the lens. But somehow, this does not feel the same as actually sitting down and noticing every hue, contour, texture of the subject being studied. So, in a way, I’m cheating myself out of the experience.

Nobody has told me that being a work at home mum is ever easy. I do keep telling myself to get off the keyboard and pick up the brush to switch off and unwind. But not only have teaching and marking work been occupying my time, there are also the dirty dishes on the sink and the pile of laundry to wash and fold.

My long-neglected sketch book replaced by time spent on my laptop 😦

And whatever little time I have left over, it’s either preparing food or going out to have some coffee to unwind. And these caffeine seshes usually involve chatting with the hubby about anything and everything, so this usually demands my undivided attention and not my eyes working away at the curvature of the leaves in the potted plant in front of us. Besides, we always go to the same supermarket cafe after finishing the grocery shopping anyway, so there’s not much point in me sketching away the same the pillar, the same cashier, or the same coffee I usually have, served in the same cup.

My must-have cafe noisette (hazelnut-flavoured espresso).

I am usually quite good at organising my time and try to list my to-dos in the old-fashioned way, on top of the phone apps that I have, to try and manage my tasks. But if you’re disorganised, you’re disorganised – no fancy-looking app or an attractive to-do note book is going to help me move my day forward!

My used coconut cream tin re-purposed as a pen-holder + my long-neglected to-do list with a number of missions accomplished!

So, no more excuses from now on. If I can be consistent with my work and personal commitments, there is no reason why I should shy from the one activity that helps relaxes me and one which I enjoy.

The reminder that sets me going.

Send me words of encouragement if you can 🙂

Urban Fes

This building is something of a relic and quite typical of the post-60s type of housing one commonly sees in the centre of Fes. You don’t see skyscrapers or many tall structures here, which is a good thing, as urban planners have the good sense of limiting the number of floors a building could have in order to maintain the beautiful panoramic mountain views that surround the city. Though quite old, these mis-shaped buildings are still quite clean. I should know, because I live in one.


Beautiful flower petals

Have you ever seen stationery as beautiful as this?

Shape Shifting

I am enjoying exploring a new dimension to using watercolours and I feel that this is something a lot more relevant to where I am at the moment. Since I am surrounded by zellij (Moroccan mosaic), it is only natural that I immortalise these shapes on paper.


It is such a soothing process, first, measuring out these shapes and scaling them to size with my compass and ruler. Then comes the fun part: water-colouring them with hues of my choice. It sits very nicely in a frame as it would plastered on a wall, provided that the colours complement whatever else there are in the room.


Coffee first

I only started drinking coffee in my 20s, primarily to de-stress myself in between teaching periods. Can’t remember exactly how this love affair started with the bean but it’s seen me through a lot of laughter, tears, and two pregnancies. It doesn’t help that I’m married to a coffee addict either, so our cupboard is always well-stocked with at least a container of coffee powder.

My first memory of this precious brew was of growing up watching my mum having coffee at least once a day. I would observe as she made herself a cup of either white or black. She would then plop herself in front of the telly while nagging us about various things. See, she can do many things all at once – a master multi-tasker. Then, a packet of brown cream cracker biscuits would appear out of nowhere and she would dip these into her coffee  and watch Wheel of Fortune.


For health reasons, I certainly don’t intend to be passing on this drinking habit to my own children. They definitely don’t need the extra fuel boost on top of their sugar diet! And I have had countless arguments with my late mother-in-law about her spiking the children’s milk with coffee. I think I may have lost this battle now as I see that their father has no qualms about doing the same.

But … back to me. I may have now developed a little obsession with coffee cups. I’m not a big fan of those ugly gigantic mugs and get particularly irritated when I walk into a Costa or Starbucks for a quick fix and receive my portion in cups that are ten times bigger than my own head. My coffee has to be in a specified measurement. If I ask for a small coffee, this is exactly what I expect – a small portion. Not some big corporate version of small. Small. As in a small cup. If I want a big container from which I could sip my coffee off a straw, then I will ask for a LARGE coffee. I shudder to think what their large coffee looks like. And no, I am not thankful for the extra dosage. If I want more coffee, I will go to the counter and either request for or purchase another serving, thank you very much.

So, back to my coffee cups. I am now the proud owner of three different ones. And now I think, should I have a different mug on three different times of the day?