I had severe toothache one night. You know these things often happen at night, right? Labour, abdominal pains, fever, toothache…they are usually so bad that you can’t wait for morning to come. So, my toothache was severe and I had nothing to use to relieve the pain. I know I am a doctor but am not big on medications. I avoid them unless absolutely necessary. Yeah, most of us in healthcare roll like that.
I began to regret running out of basic drugs like common analgesics at home. I had Paracetamol (Acetaminophen) suspension though but I saw no sense in downing a bottle of my son’s medication… then I remembered garlic! Its oil is said to help alleviate toothache; I had no garlic oil but I did have raw garlic so I went for that. I peeled off the skin and sank my affected tooth into its smelly juiciness, biting in and holding on, oblivious to its nauseating smell. Wallahi, the pain reduced. Just like that. Like magic! After just a couple of minutes. Even our analgesic tabs don’t work like that! 10mins tops and my toothache was relieved. Alhamdulillah! It really does work (but I still need to see the dentist though.)

And it’s not just garlic; Allah’s creation is filled with healing and goodness. I do know that honey can be fantastic in dressing wounds and burns, aloe vera relieves superficial kitchen burns, milk could act like an antacid while olive oil is great for skin and hair. These natural remedies are a wonderful blessing from the Creator to the created. Aren’t you just grateful?

Have you used any home remedies that worked for you?

SEASONS Q6.99, Q27.60

In Nigeria, our seasons are simply 2, not the quad of spring to winter; just wet and dry seasons, for those who don’t know.

Personally, I prefer the wetter of the two, especially when the exhausting heat of March is being shooed away by the deliciously tantalising smell of water on dust and those heavy winds! *sigh* Bliss!

I particularly love being indoors when it rains, relishing the deafening staccato on our aluminium roofs. The howling wind rattling the windows in their frames…the amazing way trees bow in reverence to Allah. Most wonderfully, the rhythm of the rain lulls my littlets to sleep. Weather for two!

If caught outdoors, it’s wonderful to sing/hum/recite Qur’an to yourself while walking calmly while it drizzles. If it is raining really hard, you may even get away with a scream or two! *grin*

After the rain, all the harmattan haze seems to have been washed away and there is this beautiful clarity like everything has been washed clean. The roads seem to glitter and the brown grass seems less depressing. Maybe it’s the promise of green grass (I love green grass!) that makes me so happy but I really do prefer the rains (so long as I don’t get drenched and fall ill; and it doesn’t rain everyday for a month).
Going to our local markets can be terrible with the mud and poor drainage, but seeing the fresh fruits, vibrant colours of veggies…I can’t complain much!
vegetable stand
I do know of the disadvantages of the rains too: laundry doesn’t get dry, our leaky roofs and subsequently smelly rugs, blown-off roofs, the traffic and the flood with its sequelae of homelessness and water-borne diseases.

I am always grateful to Allah we do not have typhoons, tsunamis and hurricanes in Nigeria. We have enough problems to battle with in Naija, abeg!

And I always thank Allah for the roof over our heads. So, enjoy the rain…while it lasts…while you can!

REFLECTION Q10.24,31; Q13.3

image credit: www.bobqat.com

image credit: http://www.bobqat.com

When we were younger, we would yearn to play outside. It was fun to be outdoors even when the sun was intense or it was raining. It was great to enjoy the splendour of nature and beauty all around us (or maybe it was the unlimited space for play!). We enjoyed seeing a plane fly, then watching the clouds and imagining what they represented, gazing at the stars and letting our imagination run wild.

My dad used to call me to see birds nestled in our trees. We always woke up to the sounds of birds tweeting in the morning and we could mimic and identify their songs.

One of my favourite places is the beach; its magnificence, expanse, beauty and danger. I also love looking up at rocks, boulders (yet to see a mountain). It’s amazing how solid, massive and ancient they are; what secrets they hold.

It is awesome using Allah’s gifts of our senses to appreciate the world around us.

Unfortunately, the skyscrapers and tall buildings started coming up, obstructing our view of the sky and restricting the flow of air. More industries were established with the powerful polluting effluents which darkened the landscape, dimmed the colours of the rainbow and muddied up the clear spring waters; bright neon lights covered the skyline at night and blurred out the visibility of the stars. Gadgets, videogames and other appliances emerged and turned our gazes firmly toward them. We no longer look up at the sky to see the beautiful cloud formations, instead we jampack our minds full of a plethora of needs, wants and data. No time to reflect on the wonder of Allah’s creation.

Are you presently in the office or at home? Step to the window and open it if you can. Take in a lungful of air (polluted or not) and hold it for a while then release it slowly. Praise Allah that you can do that without the aid of a machine. Let the scales fall off your eyes and experience the vastness of the heavens, the beauty of nature around you, no matter how small. Step out of where you are and take a little walk if you can and thank Allah you are able to appreciate via your senses. Drop the gadgets for a minute and be grateful for life. Life is for the living.

Alhamdulillah for life!


When was the last time you prayed outdoors, apart from Eid prayers? When did you ever take your prayer rug outside and lay it on the grass, beach sand or snow? Have you or your children ever climbed a tree or rock to call the adhan? Or performed ablution in a cool clear stream?

There is such an intensity that comes with praying outdoors, particularly for us women. It just feels so delicious and awe-inspiring and special. The wonder of Allah’s creation surrounds us and is filled with such beauty and colour. Fruits, birds, animals, trees, mountains, the sun, the clouds, the moon, stars…the quiet serenity of nature…
Challenge yourself and pray outdoors today. You will be glad you did!
PS. I would love for you to send me your pictures and share your experiences. Do e-mail me @ anchorwithkeidi@gmail.com and I will share your pictures with us all.