Wednesday, March 29, 2006

The Tunisian Air Cake!!

Busy with my work and lovely twin, I always search for easy and quick recipes. My Tunisian sister in law gave me this recipe for a very delicious and quick dessert, they call it "The Air Cake" because it needs few ingredients and little effort!


Ready to make Crème Patissier ,
Whipped cream,
Butter biscuits (rectangle or square shaped),
Coffee ,


1-Prepare the whipped cream and leave to cool in the fridge, meanwhile prepare the crème patissier and leave aside, then prepare a strong black coffee and add one big spoon of sugar to it.

2-Arrange1/3 of the biscuits in equal rows and columns.

3-Wet the each biscuit with a little coffee.

4-Put a layer of the crème patissier , taking care not to move the biscuits.

5-Put another layer of biscuits and wet with coffee.

6- Add a layer of whipped cream.

7-Finish with a layer of biscuits wet with coffee.

8- Put in the fridge covered for 5 minutes.

9- Either cut the cake in equal rectangles/squares and put one in each plate , or just put some in each plate.

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Egypt's debt over 100% of GDP!!

According to forecasts from the Economist Intelligence Unit’s CountryData Service, Egypt's public debt is likely to be equal to around 109% of GDP through 2006!!
Reading this news today makes me wonder where the Egyptian leadership is driving our economy.
Please join me in commenting on this subject.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Egyptian Youth Say No to Politices

A poll done by Al Ahram newspaper found that 89.11% of the Egyptian youth surveyed (between 18 and 35 years old) don't belong to a political party and that 69.6% of them don't have an election card. The results, though expected, reflect a sense of despair among our youth, as many of them lost trust in the present parties that failed to develop realistic electoral programs to address the issues that concern Egypt's youth.

The ruling National Democratic Party does nothing than issuing statements without real change and the opposition parties failed to invent solutions to the problems our youth face and they are satisfied with just saying NO to the government plans without offering a real alternative.

I believe that if we told any of these governments that they will rule Egypt tomorrow they will Panic, as none of them has a realistic program or a program at all to govern the country. They’re caught up in internal conflicts about leadership, like what we saw lately in Al Wafd party, and they have no real presence in the Egyptian street.

These parties have failed to earn the trust of Egyptian youth because they have done nothing to earn this trust. And the negative attitudes of the Egyptian youth, that was reflected in the poll, is not a result of ignorance or carelessness, but it is a scream of protest against political opportunism of parties that offers nothing but hollow slogans.

Friday, March 24, 2006

Useful Tips about Twins

As a working mum with a twin, life has not been easy for me lately. There was days when I cried out of exhaustion and sleep deprivation. Everyday I faced a new challenge and solved a new problem. My twin (Moaz and Anas) are my first kids and I had ZERO experience in dealing with kids. And the worse is that I live away from my family and has no one to help me, except my husband of course.

Anyway, I want to share my experience with you, so that you can avoid my mistakes and make use of my ideas. so, here are the golden rules that I found useful:

Accept help with the house work from family, friend and neighbors.
I'm the kind of person that wants to do everything by herself, but this didn't help me much at the end of the day when I was alone with my Twin tired of cleaning, cooking and washing all the day.

If you want to breast feed, which I recommend, learn how to feed both kids at the same time.
This will save you precious time you need to sleep or just lie down a little.
Invest in a good electric breast pump, it will give you a break, especially during the night were your spouse can give expressed milk to the kids. You will also need it when you get back to work. You may wonder how to find time to express your milk? I suggest that you pump when breast as you nurse one of the babies from the other one and switch the next time!

Keep your fridge full with healthy choices.
Because I didn't have time to eat nice healthy meals, most of the time I just get achocolate, or a cake, ..etc. every time I feel hungry. I didn't gain weight cause nursing two babies consumes a lot of calories, but I was exhausted and tired all the time and I didn't get the elemnts my body needs to keep energetic and be able to do what i have to do. You specially need proteins, iron, vitamin c and calcium.

Be organized.
Plan ahead for meals, doctor appointments, shopping, visits, ...etc.
I found it useful to prepare meals in the week end and freeze them, so they'll be ready to use through the week. Get them out of the freezer before you go to work and cook when you come back. meals that can be cooked in the oven are a good choice, as you can put them in the oven the minute you reach home, so that they will be ready by the time you have changed your clothes and nursed the babies.

Buy rocking chairs for the babies.
You can rock the chair of one kid with your leg while nursing or changing for the other. It's also a safe choice for them to sleep in during the day.
Write down everything.
Make a table to write down which one nursed on which breast, which one changed diaper, ... etc. Believe me with all the things going on in your life you will even forget which of them you are holding.
Creat bed time routine.
My last advice for you is to start trying to create a similar nap and bedtime routine for both of them by the time they are around 3 months. But this deserves a whole new article.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Learning it the hard way

I have read mountains of articles, books and research about newborns during my pregnancy, but the only thing I didn’t read about was breastfeeding. I did decide to breastfeed my twin, but I thought that this is some thing that happens naturally and that it doesn’t need education. I’ve always seen women taking their breasts out and putting them into their hungry babies’ mouths and the baby nurses happily. That was very far from reality.

After the delivery, which was by a cesarean operation, I discovered that I should’ve learned how to latch my baby well to the breast, how to increase my milk supply, how to avoid soar nipples, and to cut a long story short, I should’ve read about breastfeeding more than anything else concerning newborns.

I know I can’t tell you all that I’ve learned in one article but I will tell you two things: First try to breastfeed your baby, the benefits for both you and your baby outweighs any exhaustion, lost time or any other reason that you may think of to not nurse your baby, The Second is that you should learn how to prepare your breasts for nursing from your last three months of pregnancy, this includes:
  • Rubbing your nipples softly with a warm towel to open the holes that get shut from accumulations over the years, and you should do this daily.
  • Stimulating your nipple in order to give it a form, so that your child can easily find it.
  • Learn good latch and positioning.

The other thing I discovered was that you should never believe what they say about some women having low milk supply, that is all women can produce enough milk for their babies, they just have to do three simple things: eat a balanced diet, drink to thirst, nurse every two to three hours.

Believe me it’s as simple as that, but I learned it the hard way. I believed what they said about low milk supply and that you can’t breastfeed a twin exclusively. And during the first few weeks after their birth I used to nurse one and give the other one formula then switch on the next feeding. I didn’t know then, that by doing this I was telling my body that I don’t need that much of milk, so my body started producing lower quantity than my babies needed. After reading about the topic I realized how wrong I was and I started trying to increase my milk supply again. I read a lot of suggestions and what worked best for me was eat well, drink to thirst and nurse often, but to avoid starving my kids until my milk supply builds up (which takes few weeks), I used a simple system, I nursed them as long as they wanted and if they stayed hungry after that (which reminds me that you should read about hunger cues), I gave them a small bottle of formula so that they don’t feel hungry, but also not to feel full that they’ll refuse to breastfeed the next feeding.

These are the basic rules that I learned and I hope to explore this issue more in the coming days.

Saturday, March 18, 2006

The Cartoons Fuss

I don't know why did Muslims make all this fuss about the cartoons that insult prophet Mohammed, peace be upon him. I see my Muslim brothers and sisters keeping their mouths shut about their bad living conditions, state suppression, and violation of human rights everyday. They didn't feel angry when their leaders starved them in order to increase money in their accounts. They didn't feel angry when they or one of their relatives or friends was tortured by the security agents in their countries. They didn't feel angry when they didn't find proper food, clean water or decent transportation means. They didn't feel angry when their leaders stayed in their thrones for ever. They didn't feel angry when most of their youth stayed unemployed. They didn't feel angry when the rents and costs of living went up for no reason. They didn’t feel angry when journalists were jailed and tortured and free speech oppressed. none of this made them angry, but when some maniac in Denmark finds nothing to male fun of but our prophet they get furious and for the first time they all unite on one aim; boycotting Dutch products. I do feel offended by the insult to our prophet, but I feel much worse because of the difficulties I face everyday in my country just to pass the day and live on the fringe of life. I just hope that Muslims has learnt the power of unity from all this fuss about the cartoons, so that next time they feel angry, they turn their anger into something positive, but I hope they choose a better target this time for their anger.