Author: Brooke

East London Writing Workshop in August!

Join a community of Muslim women writers at varying stages (wannabe to professional) in a unique, fun opportunity to explore and hone our writing skills while creating new stories and/or sharpening work in progress. This event is calibrated to work for writing short stories, memoirs, novels, essays, fiction and non-fiction. Saturday August 12, 2017 in East London/Essex 9:00 – 4:00 with a one hour lunch break Facilitated by professional writer and editor Brooke Benoit, Content Director of SISTERS Magazine and Founder of Fitra Journal Space is extremely limited, so please reserve your seat ASAP.   £95 includes pre-workshop materials,...

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Do You Ramadan With A Planner?

Thinking back to my first dozen or so Ramadans without a Ramadan planner, they appear so lack luster now. Some of them were great, some were extra challenging, but overall they were focused on the wrong things (food!) and there was little planning that went into how to achieve the goals I felt desperate to reach. As a convert, I only experienced one Ramadan before my first pregnancy. That was a fun one. All but that first Ramadan have been centered on caring for other people while fasting, and not prioritizing my ibadah to the extent I guiltily felt...

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About that “Two Weeks Free” Thing…

  I’m polishing up the Two Weeks Free portion of the upcoming Writing From The Fitra Workshop and thought I should take a moment to explain my process here. Firstly, I know that even though it’s stuff they love and need, it is very, very difficult for many of my workshop takers to bring themselves to do something like a writing workshop. These writers and writing-types are busy, busy women. And they feel guilty doing something so luxurious as navel gazing taking an introspective, personal growth writing workshop. I get that. I live that! So what I’ve done is...

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I Ate Everything I Wasn’t Supposed to While I Was Pregnant

I have been meaning to cut back on activities that folks can use to judge my mothering and make more time to write about all the bad mommy things I have done, but then some other bad mommies suggested that I open an Instagram account. So, let me quickly tell you about how during my six+ pregnancies I managed to unknowingly or unaware-ingly eat everything pregnant people are not supposed to eat, and then I can return to posting pictures of the outcomes. During my first pregnancy, I worked in a fine arts and crafts gallery where all but one of my dozen co-workers were women and there were several varieties of diets constantly occurring simultaneously among them. I had never been a dedicated dieter, rather I just exercised daily via my bike/walk/rollerblade commute and ate what I mostly wanted, but in that first pregnancy I was enjoying my opportunity to eat for two. A few times a day I would walk into the break room, of course always offering to share, with my daily indulgence in hand and mouth, such as a wheel of brie and a loaf of brioche. My svelte co-workers would groan and hasten out of the room; though on one occasion an entire family-sized tiramisu did manage to get eaten by someone(s) after I abandoned it back there. I suppose it was because I was only the third...

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The Unassisted Birth of Asiya Eve

I just realized that I never got around to writing about the unassisted (assisted by my husband) birth story of Asiya Eve last year. Maybe I hadn’t done so because it was really quite uneventful. My water broke late in the morning, maybe it was even early in the afternoon. I told my husband, who pops in and out of the house at least a half dozen times a day, that if he had any errands to run to please do so now and quickly. And he did. Slowly (pacing myself) I began to prepare the odds and ends...

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