Why I feel so alive in New York!

Dirty Streets, fresh gelato in little Italy, a diversity of strangers, shopping, mad taxi drivers, fresh pizza, a picnic basket and blanket, a good book and bikini on the Central Park lawn, music and skaters and most of all you don’t need any sleep here because there is plenty more to do! (I rested when I was back in my hometown, as I made sure to get my beauty sleep!) I enjoyed walking almost everywhere as well as renting a Citi bike via the Lyft app.

As the night never ends, it’s quite easy to feel alive with so much “life” happening! When I arrived back to the hotel (our last night in New York City), I turn on the television and the famous Sex and the City- the movie was on. What a perfect way to end my night. Not to watch television, but to experience exactly what was on the screen as a reality. Lastly, I felt all my dreams were possible and even left with new dreams. New York, New York, oh how I love you! In due time my next visit shall include the debut of my book, Silva Sisters.

New York Public Library – I cannot wait to see my book(s) moving on your shelves someday into the hands of readers!

Until next time New York 💋

❤️ B

21 Days of Fasting and Prayer

Hello everyone ❤️ and bless you for joining my community .   Today marked day 21 for me of fasting and prayer for the start of 2019. My hope is to share with you my personal experience and exactly what it means to fast and pray. Also, for those who have never heard of fasting along with prayer, please continue reading. I hope you enjoy!

God bless you!

– What is fasting?

According to the dictionary, it is to abstain from all food or to eat sparingly or of certain kinds of food, especially as a religious observance.

Also, there are many scriptures in the Bible that reference fasting.

A scripture regarding fasting that best represents why I fast: Ezra 8:23 “So we fasted and petitioned our God about this, and he answered our prayer”

– What makes fasting combined with prayer such a powerful act?

Many people use fasting for various reasons, but when we add prayer to fasting we are placing God first on our list. As we begin to seek God more throughout the day placing a higher importance on our Lord, we send a message to God that we are indeed passionate on hearing back and receiving an answer. In my experience, I always receive major breakthroughs from fasting and praying. Most importantly, I become closer to God.

– What did I gain?

I gained more passion in seeking God and I became more in love with Jesus! I developed a hunger for the Lord. I started a new craving – to be filled up by the Holy Spirit. Sometimes we use food to fill us up or we may use food to feed an emotion. Hence, this is where fasting helps us turn our needs over to the attention of God. We in-turn develop more hunger for God through our fasting and praying. Through that hunger, we become closer to God and we can hear God more clearly and prayers are answered more frequently.

– My message to you:

Do you feel a prayer you’ve prayed hasn’t been answered? It’s time to take radical action and give fasting and prayer a chance to work in your life. Also know, it doesn’t always need to be food. It can be any distraction, I.e. (Social Media, Television, Negative Thinking, Negative Speaking, Gossip, etc.) you know your vice in which you are ready to break free from in order to develop a stronger relationship with God and receive your breakthrough! I challenge you to fast and pray by starting with 3 days and then a week, and then 21 days!

God Bless You!

❤️ B

A Mediterranean Evening with me!

Photography by: MCY Photography.

First, I will say – I Love Mediterranean food and moreover, I enjoy creating this Cuisine for those I love!

I grew up watching my mother create dishes out of this world. The most important piece to this is that every dish was made with love. Which brings me to my reasons for the enjoyment of my very own creations in my kitchen. I understand that cooking with love and happiness in my heart transpires to what I serve. If I cook with love, whoever enjoys my food will feel that love long after they’ve gotten up from the table. Do we really go back for seconds because of its taste or is it the love we feel from that dish? Possibly, it’s both! When cooking, I believe in setting the atmosphere to feel like a cozy and loving environment. From a clean home, to candles, and the right music for the occasion. Tonight, I welcome you to my home through reading – to a Mediterranean evening with me. Enjoy, and I hope that you too can serve up a creation to those dear to you with love.

My home is all cleaned and the candles are going! I feel it’s time for some music to kick off the evening. To give the gift of Mediterranean food is to also provide the gift of Middle East vibes. I have selected a mixture of soft jazz and beautiful Arabic sounds (instruments) only. Now, I’m heading to the kitchen to share with you a few of my staples and dishes for this type of evening.

My Staple must haves for a Mediterranean evening:

– Rose Water

– Olive Oil

– Greek Yogurt

– Lemons

– Tomatoes

– Cucumbers

– Fresh Mint Leaves

– Fresh Dill

– Parsley

– Garlic

– Potatoes

– Chickpeas

– Bulgur

– Basmati Rice

– Tahini

– Fresh Dill Pickles

– Zaatar Seasoning

– Aleppo Pepper

– Paprika

– Cumin

– Pitta bread or you can make your own!

Below, my Tzatziki sauce in the making:

Plain Greek Yogurt, Dill, Mint, Garlic, Lemon Juice

Below, my Tabbouleh (Tabouli) in the making:

Parsley, Mint, Tomato, Cucumber, Pressed Garlic, Bulgur, Lemon Juice

Below, Bulgur in the making:

Below, sautéed mushrooms (which I substitute for meat)

Below, Spicy Zaatar red potatoes being prepped for baking:

While everything is finishing up on the stove and in the oven, I begin to prepare a well designed drink:

My homemade drink to go with this loving meal includes: Still or Sparkling Water, Rose Water, Fresh Mint Leaves and Fresh Sliced Limes. For those who enjoy more of an adult drink, adding vodka goes well with this refreshing drink.

Now, I’m ready to set the table with several plates of beautiful varieties; amazing colored veggies, pitta bread, Tzatziki, Tabouli, sautéed mushrooms, hummus, spicy Zaatar red potatoes and so much more.

My end goal is not merely the creation of beautiful food, but that love is felt through every bite! 🥂 Toast to a lovely Mediterranean evening!

❤️ B

Middle East Cuisine – Houston, Texas

Mediterranean is one of my favorite Cuisines! I stopped into a restaurant called Zabak’s Mediterranean Cafe and there I met siblings, Peter and Sandra Zabak. Not only was the the food amazing, the customer service was super genuine. I ordered the Vegetarian plate as seen above, which included: Falafel, Spinach Pie, Hummus and Tabouli Salad. The Falafel = Brilliant! The best I’ve had around Houston. The five star reviews on Zabak’s Falafel drove me to the restaurant in the first place. Now, my mother and I are already planning for another visit to Zabak’s Cafe.

Warm Pita Bread!

My mom ordered the Greek Salad, which she fell in love with!

Finally, Dessert – The Baklava. I woke up this morning wanting another slice with a cup of green tea! The best! More reasons to go back to Zabak’s.

We will definitely be back for more. The food was clearly made with love! My kind of place!

❤️ B

Writing and Where it All Began for Me

You heard it, a hot cup of tea with a good book, cozy environment and I am happy!  At the age of 8 years old, I wrote my first book.  As I look back at my writing I am extremely amazed at the creativity and intelligence of my mind as a child.  Now 20 years later, I am taking that book and rewriting that story.  As a child, reading took me away and writing gave me the opportunity to change situations creatively that I could not change myself. At last, I am excited to share my upcoming writing projects!

❤️ B