a little bit about me

Hello!  Welcome to my tiny part of the vast interweb, I hope you have a second to sit down and grab some warm teaMy name is Madina, which means 'city' in Arabic.  I am a first generation Algerian-American, which means that my parents immigrated to the United States but I was born here, in Oklahoma of all places.  Algeria is one of those hidden paradise countries, I always explain to people that it's in North Africa right next to Morocco, then they act like they know where it is haha.  While Morocco tends to get the bigger part of tourism, Algeria is just as beautiful, if not more.  Our culture is unlike any other culture in the world, and we take great pride in our uniqueness.  

I was raised in both Algeria, and the U.S.  I learned English when I was 10 at an ESL (English Second Language) School and now here I am writing a blog haha!  My parents, my brothers, and I are all trilingual, we speak Arabic, English, and FrenchGrowing up, we traveled a lot as a family to all different parts of Europe and I always kept a little diary of my thoughts and sights and people and just about everything I could think ofWhen all the other children were busy going to pool parties and such during the summer, I took literature leisure classes for fun because I'm all about that nerd life haha I read every book I could get my hands on.  Literature became my most favorite subject in school, and writing this blog for my family uses that part of my brain that I really enjoy the most.

The other part of my life was spent in south Louisiana, then north Louisiana for pharmacy school, then I took a pharmacist job here in Arkansas.  I fell in love with photography when studying pharmacy material all the time became too much, it used the creative part of my brain that I longed for again.  So my graduation present was a DSLR.  I bought a digital photography for dummies and started taking my camera everywhere I went.  It kind of became my diary of sorts, and I loved that.
July 16th, 2011 was a Saturday, I'll never forget that.  That afternoon around 1 pm, I met the man of my dreams.  I was 25 and was completely captivated by his baby blue eyes.  We started our very own adventure together.  That adventure took us from falling in love at first sight, to our wedding, to New Zealand, to Texas, to Hawaii, to our first child Ariella, then our second baby Gwendolyn, then back to Arkansas, and now with our newest little baby Florence.  I am absolutely head over heels crazy about my husband and the life that we live with our beautiful daughters.  I always tell him how special of a man he is to be the man of reason amongst all of us women, and he tells me that his dream of being surrounded by women for his entire life came true.  

I started the original blog many moons ago, maybe about 8 years now.  It has gone through many transformations and titles and motivations, but I've come to accept that it's ok and that it's completely consistent with the my own transformations.  Change is good.  Change and God are the only constant in the universe is what my sweet husband always tells me.  I have asked myself many times as to why I write this blogIt's propelled by a love for Christ and a love for my familyI want to live a life like His, and while I'm ever failing, I'm not afraid to show you what both my victories and my failures look like.  Sometimes it's fueled by a passion to create or inform you of something that I have learned, or to share our life with some of our family that we don't get to see often.  Sometimes it's to share thoughts for my own therapeutic purposes, or photographs that I loved taking.  Sometimes it's for our girls to read back on to see what their mama was like and how she loved them with every single part of herself.  But honestly, it's mostly for me.  I don't want to ever forget them being tiny and the joy in the whispers and the pain in the loudness.  So for whatever reason that you may be here, I am so glad that you are.


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