ACraftyArab Booth at Eat with Muslims {Outing}

I created an educational booth, of Islamic craft tutorials, last night for a new organization, Eat with Muslims. that was held at St. Therese Church in Seattle.

I was so honored to be taking part is such an informative evening and send my heartfelt gratitude to EWM, for allowing me the space to showcase –

It was held at St. Therese Parish, with dinner provided by EWM, free of charge. This organization was started in 2017 as a way to build bridges:

We believe that eating together and sharing an experience is what will strengthen and enrich our country and values so let’s sit together.

Founders Ilays Aden & Fathia Absie
Eat wtih Muslims co-Founder Ilays Aden and ACraftyArab Founder Koloud 'Kay' Tarapolsi
Eat wtih Muslims co-Founder Ilays Aden and ACraftyArab Owner Koloud ‘Kay’ Tarapolsi

The food was delirious, a blend of sub-Sahara and North African flavors. There was goat, chicken, vegetables, hummus, bread, salad, and yummy desserts, including dates.

Attendees were encouraged to sit with someone they did not know, to open dialog. There was a Muslim member from EWM at each table. There were also 10 questions about Islam on the table, to help facilitate the conversation.

Our own table took on the issue of race in religion. Our EWM representative had converted to Islam in the 1970s. These are his words “I went to a religious class here at St. Therese and my priest could not explain to me why my Jesus (pbuh) was white on the walls but described differently in my Bible.” Once he started to look into Islam, he realized that Mohammed (pbuh) did not have any images of what He looked like nor was there a Christmas in His honor, he liked that the religion was not about Him but about the personal & communal direction in life. Our representative repeated several times that this was his own path, as a black man in America, on how he had arrived to Islam and others have different stories. But this lead our conversation to race & religion.

I’m sure that this conversation would make many uncomfortable, but I was excited it was happening because race is an issue that is not discussed enough. America has a vast history with slaves and one that is not as well known, Muslim slaves. Yet, we do not discuss enough how white & black & yellow & red & every other races were brought together in our history, in movies, books or TV, unless we are shown it disproportionately tied with violence.

Once dinner was over, a panel of Muslims were asked public questions from the audience to wrap up the evening. The range of questions varied from how women were treated in pre-Islamic times to what is a burka.

I was so indebted to EWM for allowing me to join in the conversation to help improve how Muslims are seen, in contrast to what is being shown in the media.

If you are having an event in Seattle and would like to have a table of educational items for children that showcase the Arab world or Islamic culture, please use my contact form to reach me. I also teach Islamic art lessons to children and provide items for longer term rentals, such as library displays.

Be sure to also check out A Crafty Arab Pinterest for printables, for example an Our Islamic World word search, available for free download, to have at events.

Gates Foundation Giving Marketplace {Outing}

I am taking part in the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Discovery Center’s Giving Marketplace. I will be  volunteering at the table for Salaam Cultural Museum Medical Mission and donating sales from A Crafty Arab’s children’s educational products.

 

It will be happening this Friday, November 30th and Saturday, December 1st.  According to their Facebook page, the event is set up for people who want to a difference this holiday season to connect with organizations making a change locally and around the world.

There are over 30 vendors set up to find unique, socially conscious gifts for family and friends at more than a dozen pop-up shops that support causes such as clean water, health, and education.

 

SCMMedical Missions will be selling jewelry made by Syrian refugee women in the Zaatari refugee camp, the third largest refugee city in the world, that is based in Jordan. It was formed in 2012 after the Syrian war started and has now developed into a permanent city, the second largest in Jordan.

 

SCMMedical Missions buys local beads, so that they carry the proper alloys & chemical components that pass American inspection, then takes them to the Zaatari refugee camp so the the women can make them into earrings, braclets and necklaces.  Then the SCMMedical Missions sells them at local fairs and gives the money back to the women.

 

I will also be selling my Arabic alphabet animal poster, Arabic colors animal poster, Arabic pronunciation magnets and the brand new Arabic alphabet coloring book.  I am donating my sales from the event because I love the organization so much.

 

Please stop by the Discovery Center at 440 5th Ave N, Seattle, Washington 98109 to support the Giving Marketplace event partners and check out our table:

 

Another volunteer and I went tonight to set up the space and it looks very exciting with all the other vendors that we saw also setting up.  Joins us and find unique, socially-conscious gifts for family and friends at dozens of pop-up shops that support causes such as women & girls, health, the environment and the refugee crisis.  There will also be an opportunity to make a gift bag and gift card for free.

 

We hope to see you there!

Be sure to stop by A Crafty Arab on Pinterest to see more of our outings.

 

Update: The Giving Marketplace went very well for SCMMedicatl Missions. We were able to raise close to $1000 in two days for refugees causes.  And I sold my first Arabic coloring book.  She was ecstatic to be my first book sale, as she was buying it for friends with kids. Both of us were so excited for the transaction and hugged each other several times. Thank you Linda!

A Crafty Arab is Going to Morocco {Outing}

In April 2019, I will be traveling back to magical Morroco to offer an art & cooking tour.

 

I am working with award winning travel agency Caravan-Serai to take friends to four northern cities. We will explore the sights, sounds, smells, and tastes that will showcase how different they truly are.

Hassan Tower in Rabat, Morocco

Rabat

We will land in the capital of Morocco, called the White Imperial City, Rabat. After assistance with airport formalities, we will be driven to a group welcome lunch. We will then check into a riad for the evening. A riad is a type of traditional Moroccan house or palace with an interior garden or courtyard. Rabat has a rich, long history and we will learn about it in art guided tours of the colonial architecture left behind, along with a culinary tour of coastal influences in a group cooking class. Local sights include Hassan tower, the splendid Mohamed V Mausoleum, the Kasbah of Oudayas and the Medina.

Chouara Tannery Fes, Morocco. Softening liquid on top and dye on bottom.

Fes

Three days are devoted to the sightseeing of Fes, the Medieval City, the most ancient cultural and spiritual city of Morocco. This medieval marvel has been frozen in a time capsule and houses the world’s oldest university, Karaouine Mosque, a World Heritage site. Art guided tours include a visit through the old medina to see different craftsmen still operating in the old oriental traditions in Fes El Jdid and the Jewish district. We will also visit the historic Nejjarine Musuem of Wooden Arts & Crafts and Batha Museum to learn about geometric patterns that make this area unique. Hammam options will also be made available for anyone interested in experiencing a private treatment. We will have an evening cooking demonstration of Amazigh & Tunisian influences, as Fes cooks are considered the country’s most elegant & gifted.

Chefchaouen, Morocco. A typically blue-rinsed hamam, bath house.

Chefchaouen

Chefchaouen is called the Blue City and is tucked away high in the Rif mountains. It remained shut off from the world for almost 500 years, forbidden to Christians until 1920. Now its narrow, labyrinthine streets, decked in shades of blue buildings with red tile roofs, are open to all. Its relaxed easy atmosphere is a strong contrast to the bustling bigger city life. The art tour will include historical visits to the Medina to relax along the Plaza Uta Hammam. We will learn about the influences of the neighboring Andalucían in the unusual octagonal tower of the Grande Mosque, visit the kasbah, & enjoy the Ethnographic Museum, stopping for moment to enjoy the breathtaking views it offers. We will visit the falls of Ras El Maa, and delight in a cooking demonstration of Mediterranean influences.

Tetouan, Morocco. Roman (Emperor Augustus period) wall exhibited at the Archaeological Museum.

Tétouan

Tétouan, sometimes called the White City or The Daughter of Granada is also situated in the Rif Mountains and was built by Muslim refugees from Spain in the 15th century. It is one of only two Moroccan Mediterranean port cities and is known for its craftsmanship and musical gracefulness. We will tour the Hispano-Moorish influence in the architecture of the Medina, a Unesco world Heritage site. We will also explore Tétouan’s culinary influences from local Amazigh, Andalusian and Ottoman cuisine, brought by Algerian immigrants, in a cooking demonstration.

Rabat

On our last day, after a group goodbye breakfast, we departure from Rabat–Salé airport for our return flight.

 

Details

Accommodation will be at authentic Moroccan bed & breakfast riads. Local chefs will be doing one cooking demonstrations with all local ingredients in each of the four cities to showcase the diversity of Moroccan cuisine. Tours are accompanied by an art guide, with an M.A. in International Studies, specializing in the Middle East and Museology, from the University of Washington, who has recently traveled to Morocco.

Included in your tour:
• 9 nights’ accommodation in bed and breakfast riads
• 4 cooking demonstrations showcasing the diversity of Moroccan food
• Air conditioned minibus with a qualified driver at disposal every day
• English speaking art guide at disposal every day
• Entrance fees to monuments and museums with {exterior} visit of mosques
• English speaking Islamic geometric art lesson
• Full booking assistance with award winning agency
• Taxes

Not included in your tour:
• All personal extra purchases of gifts, clothing, etc
• Lunches and dinners not included in cooking demos
• Drinks during the meals, mini bar, etc
• Tips for guides and drivers
• Travel insurance
• Airline tickets

The total price for the trip is $2200. If you are interested in joining us, please call 206-545-7300 to talk to a travel agent.

To prepare for your trip, visit these previous posts on Morocco

Morocco Flag Candy Dish {Tutorial}

Morocco Sweet Stew {Recipe}

 

Visit the Morocco Art & Cooking tour Facebook page to keep updated on articles & happenings.

 

Be sure to stop by A Crafty Arab on Pinterest to see more on our Morocco board.