i’m telling myself this after a few major blunders this past week.

because the reality of it is that i am human and i screw up.

and the fact that i’ve learned from my mistakes is the only reason it’s all ok.

if i kept being hard on myself past the twenty minutes or so that i allowed to dwell on things, then it wouldn’t be ok.

if i kept inside my head and didn’t balance my frustrations with some sort of release, then it wouldn’t be ok.

if i kept saying the awful words i said to myself, and i admit i did, then it wouldn’t be ok.

if i kept on going at the rate i have been without a keen sense of awareness, then it wouldn’t be ok.

living, and learning from living is the way about the mistakes, or rather experiences, accumulated over time.

so i say to my parking ticket, almost towed car, missed event – just so you know, you’re not going to get me down.

and i’m telling you right now, don’t let yours get you too.

you’re so much better than that.

and it’s ok.

credit / it’s ok print


i love these types of quizzes.

take two guesses to figure out which one i am.

actually to be honest, out of the four i could possibly be two. and although my results came out as one solid personality type, i’m definitely, as with many things, on the borderline.

find out which type you are and let’s talk on insta.




1. my phones screen saver of late. read it how you want to. love yourself so you can love others well. or love others so you can get love back.

2. empty pools. there’s something about the surrounding colours, angular lines and cavernous space that appeals to me so.


3. i have this thing with shadows. shall i hashtag that?


4. posted this on instagram the other day and i think it deserves a repost here. it’s a good month islamically to give as well, so it’s a nice simple reminder to myself to give more and more. and iA the riches will follow.


5. last week i was living at lowes. this week i’m praying for seedlings (grass seedlings) to sprout. should i just bail on this plan and opt for a fast growing ground cover? this post from a lazy toronto environmentalist (his words, not mine) are really making me think twice.


6. niyya got a new dolly from her dadi for her birthday a few weeks back. and  at first glance thought, “cool, i’ll just go and exchange it for a darker haired doll.” you know, one that looks more like us. but then, as i got to thinking, changed my mind about that completely. the point of a baby dolly is to love and care for someone other than yourself. and i thought, why not love and care for a blonde haired blue eyed baby? even though she doesn’t look like us she is still one of us. in the human sense. right? so baby ina is here to stay and we all love her so.

U_ISSA / tahsin, the good

7. one of many likes on instagram this week courtesy of u_issa.


8. there’s a new path i discovered in my forest the other day and those 6am walks in there with the sound of my thoughts, breath and the leaves on the trees are just the best.


9. finally read thru mr. steve jobs commencement address for the graduates of stanford from a few years ago. wow, there’s a lot of good insight in there. click  to read the speech in its entirety, or if you’re a mac user and into a hunt, find it tucked away in the hard drive of your computer.

CHRISTINA NORBERG / tahsin, the good

10. christina norberg art is nice. her work explores places “where everything intersects. where everything feels right.” my kinda girl.



some things is my musings post. i share photos and ideas of things that i’ve been up to lately, or that i just want to share.

i share and discuss more on my instagram, pinterest and twitter. follow along and see.

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THE GOOD SHOT / JASON HUDSON / tahsin, the good

since i teach a workshop in mobile photography i thought it would be fitting to share some of my favorite iphone-only photographers that i have come across on instagram.

it’s amazing to see what this tool can do and looking at photos like these are part of my daily inspiration re-up.

next up is jason hudson.

THE GOOD SHOT / JASON HUDSON / tahsin, the good

i had the luck of finding his feed early on in my time with this fun little app. i think, if i’m not mistaken, his feed was a suggested one to follow right from the jump.

and with good reason. his photos are consistent, but not predictable; beautiful, but not pretty; and somewhat themed, but definitely not boring.

by following his feed i have learned, among other things, a lot about composition, colour and repetition. all of which appeal to my visual sensibility.

his photos are really beautiful to look at.

and he is hilariously dry, a little sarcastic and fiercely loyal. that is, from what i gather.

his palette changes with the seasons. or location, for that matter. while not totally on the go, he has lead a very nomadic lifestyle in the last few years. traveling around the world from australia to amsterdam last year, to holing up in bahrain for the past six or so months. to say his photos cure/ignite my wanderlust is an understatement.

his photos tell a story of far away places, wandering, and because he shares so much the places ended up being refreshingly familiar.

THE GOOD SHOT / JASON HUDSON / tahsin, the good

since i think he’s so cool, i had to holler at him and pick his brain a bit on a few things. some to do with photography and some to do with.. life.

dig in if you’re a curious cat like me.

me: tell me a little about yourself.

him: oh god, i haven’t had to put myself into words in a long time! i honestly don’t know how. i’m a 33 year old person.

THE GOOD SHOT / JASON HUDSON / tahsin, the good

me: what would close loved ones say about you?

him: i think they’d say i’m enthusiastic and wacky. that i’m passionate about unexpected things. that i’m funny and smart. i like tidbits of information and facts.

me: what is/are your favourite things to shoot?

him: commercially, i like shooting food and spaces. artistically i like shooting people. i always like taking pictures of buildings and places. i like telling stories, so for me words and photos are sort of inextricably linked.

i like telling stories, so for me words and photos are sort of inextricably linked.

me: you’ve been around the world. do you have a favourite place? or top three and why?

him: you’re killing me. how do i choose? we always say bali, new zealand, and amsterdam. but i sincerely love every place i’ve ever been because, i mean, i just feel so lucky to have been there.

bali is beautiful and special. the people are great. there are so many parts that haven’t been squashed by tourism. it’s really bound by tradition and religion, but in a decidedly non-restrictive way. hinduism, of course, is unlike most formal religions.

new zealand is like another world. in a simple 2 hour drive the landscape could change 14 times. it’s mysterious and sparse and untouched. but also super familiar, in that it’s a commonwealth nation. so it sort of feels like canada, but with those accents and palm trees.

amsterdam was fun. and adorable. we rented a houseboat on the canal and enjoyed atypical weather (sunny and hot) so it was just this perfect combo. it felt like canadian cottage country. and we got to smoke pot for the first time in a while, which was fun.

when i’m really needing a spark, i don’t do or seek anything.

me: current inspiration and influences vs your youth inspiration and influences. has there been a big shift or steady growth over time?

him: music has always been a big one for me, though i don’t know if i’d describe any one thing as “inspirational”. like, when i’m really needing a spark, i don’t do or seek anything. i’m a typical creative – at my least-inspired, i probably do the worst thing, which is shut down completely and go into some sort of anxiety-driven depressive state. so at an inspiration-low-point, it’s probably not the best time to try to be creative. you gotta wait for it to pass and hop on when it’s already moving. it’s a timing thing. i tend to let myself ebb and flow and i don’t get too involved. i’m not a great self-motivator.

me: how did you spend your youth?

hanging with my best friend (20 years of friendship this year!) going to the mall, hanging in her bedroom playing music. singing and dancing and being silly. being sentimental and nostalgic. we could reminisce within hours of an experience. now that i think of it, i do that with most people i’m close with. the need to tell stories, i suppose. i mythologize my life instantaneously. i don’t know why that is. probably a comfort mechanism. my grandmother was a big storyteller. when we were quite young, she and my sister and i would have sleepovers and we’d request certain stories time and time again. i think life looks better in retrospect, when you can clear away the clutter and get to the essential truth of it. or the part that feels most true. i like perspective.

i mythologize my life instantaneously. i don’t know why that is. probably a comfort mechanism.

me: can you share a handful of your own iphone tips/apps that you use?

him: ig, afterlight, snapseed, skrwt, retouch.
if you only do one edit, straighten your damn horizon lines!

(note: after jason told me about skrwt, it has been one of my must-use apps! get it. get it now!)

me: who are some of your favourite photographers whose work you love? on insta or otherwise.

him: ritts, testino, liebovitz, seliger. i love the classic celebrity portraitists of my youth. i remember being so enamoured by the original us magazine and 90s vanity fair. portraits of princess diana. the vf hollywood issue.

and on ig – @dearleila, @timrobisonjr, @taraobrady, @nazfilms, @ryan__marshall

THE GOOD SHOT / JASON HUDSON / tahsin, the good

you can connect with this good ol’ canadian boy on his instagram, twitter or his blog.

thanks so much for sharing jason.



the good shot is a visual feature i share about people who take absolutely gorgeous, yet simple, story-telling photos with their iphone only. get inspired people, captured moments like these are only a click away.

it is also the name of the workshop i teach on mobile photography for your blog, business + home. the next class will be this summer.

have an insta account you love that you think i should follow? talk to me. you can find me on instagram, fb or twitter.

like what you see? subscribe and never miss a post.


passed by this gallery in roncesvalles yesterday and while i took many photos and saw many interesting things, i got stuck here last night while editing and wanted share real quick.

john jones is the artist behind this series, and the thought that he has put into the purpose of the whole thing alone is worth sharing with you. how much time do we take to give reasons for the things we do?

so take a look.

because the art is appealing.

and while you’re at it have a little think.

read more about this exhibit on the autumn gallery website here.


ps. looking at this gallery’s past events, I’m currently hooked. it’s that well curated. kinda wish I got a chance to see all the libraries, the art of conversation, and welcome to flight school.

note. after a little extra digging i realize what is photographed above is not john jones work, instead is the work of ethan tennier-stuart. my bad.



pre-sale tickets for the good exchange are up!

click here to get yours.

and just so you all know, the cause i have chosen for this exchange is water.org. and if you’ve been following along with this good exchange project you’ll know two things. one – i keep changing the name of it, and two – i had previously said that i will be raising funds for one cause for the whole year in an effort to make a bigger impact. as you might have guessed, i’ve changed my mind a bit on number two going forward.

and it’s not because i don’t think 20x20x20.org, is not a worthwhile organization to help out. far from it. it has more to do with shining a light on more causes to get involved with. there are so many good people out there doing good things for others that the more i find out the harder they are to ignore. i want to be able to somehow give them a pat on the back for a job well done, and do what i can, along with you, to help.

do what you can with what you have.

so a portion of the proceeds will be going towards water.org which is a pretty essential project dedicated to providing safe water to those in need. and if you take a look through their site, you will begin to understand that this basic life source, that is abundant, and likely taken for granted to you and me, is not so for so many around the world. here, let me put that into numbers you can fathom. more than 748 million people lack access to safe water.

more than 748 million people lack access to safe water.

okay, maybe that’s not fathomable. it’s pretty terrible actually considering that water is an non-negotiable to life.  and if not for the water taps and wells that water.org provides, these families and communities, and more often than not, women, would have to spend countless hours going out of their way to obtain water for their families. this takes away from their time to do so many other productive and necessary things.

just imagine if you had to spend three to four hours out of your day just to get water.

three to four hours! sometimes more. that’s a huge chunk of time. time that, for the families who have received a life-changing tap, is now spent on farming, the needs of their children and so much more. i few months ago i came across benjamin heath’s ig, where he was documenting some of the lives changed by this initiative. his thoughts on the project and some really amazing photos and profiles can be found here.

read more about the good exchange in past posts here including yesterday’s post about the last exchange in january.

so come, join me at the good exchange in a few weeks time. i promise, it will be well worth it.


photo credit / water.org with my artwork on top.


this post is loooooong overdue. the soup exchange i speak of here was waaaaay back in january. i seem to have a problem with being timely with sharing what’s going on. probably not the smartest thing to admit to on here, but at this point in my life, it’s the truth.  and this probably has to do with the fact that there is always so much going on! and that’s not me complaining. not at all. well, not totally. i’m in desperate need for a little life decluttering and packed schedules has a lot to do with this overwhelming feeling. and yes, i get overwhelmed at times especially when there’s such a backlog. i’m constantly working on being more organized and adopting a more consistent lifeflow.

anyway, i’m posting about this now because i’m in the midst of planning another exchange, of the salad variety, and wanted to share with you how much fun the good exchange is. i’m really hoping you’ll be able to make it out in  few weeks time on june 6th.

the premise is simple. you come with four jars the same item and leave with four different ones. of which you can enjoy as lunches or sides at dinner through the week.

now that’s something to get excited about.

but while the premise may be simple, the gathering is much more than just an exchange of good food. it’s a gathering. an opportunity to connect with like- and unilke-minded people. it’s about people. and conversation, and getting to know to one another beyond conventional connections.

and it’s an opportunity to give back.

at the soup exchange the cause i wanted to shed light on and that everyone who came raised money for was 20x20x20.org, an organization that provides simple, yet life-changing operations to restore the sight of people with vision complications around the world. collectively we raised enough for two people to get the gift of sight. the gift of a better life.

so i’m hoping you can make it to the next exchange, but for now, take a peek at what the last one looked like. a big thanks to atifa for snapping the pics and of course to all of you who came out and spent the afternoon with me.

i co-hosted this exchange with my good friend and sister salma and am so thankful that she was able to take the time out of her busy life to do me the honour. she is a wonderful person and a whiz in the kitchen. so we were lucky enough to munch on her gourmet grilled cheeses in between courses.

each course was served hot by the feature maker it was made by. i made a tomato and red pepper based shorba, sukaina made a delicious tex-mex inspired squash soup, waheeda an inspirational goal-getter made a hearty and spicy oat based soup, and salma made one of her specialties, tom kah gai.  mmm i can still taste the coconut and spice.

it’s pretty impressive when you see so much soup lined up in a row. all homemade and made with love. at least i think so.       

oh hey kay!

i put thought into creating a smoothly running event and the major concern here is making sure everyone gets four different soups home without any confusion. it’s a bit like piecing together a puzzle and to make it unbiased we all go by numbers. so far this method has not failed me!

i made ice-cream sandwiches and a few of the ladies brought desserts (thanks shahana and fatima!) to sweeten things up a bit.

it was simple. delicious and heart-warming.

we took a moment to watch a video profiling a family impacted by this organization and reflected on the little big thing we just did. it felt so good. you can check it out here.

so save the date for the next one on june 6th. and keep your eye out this week for when the presale tickets drop. hope to see you there!


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