Sweet & Solid – Interviewed by Zatasha Kiran

Arwa Abdulrahman Al-Moghrabi, the talented 27 year old Saudi Lebanese hybrid, already has a BA in language and literature and is currently working on an MA in Education (TESOL).

She started teaching English as a second language when she was 13 and also runs Cookietier, a home based bakery that specialises in sweets. As if all that wasn’t enough she is a fitness instructor and personal trainer and loves to stay motivated with diversity at work.

Q: As a baker, fitness instructor and English teacher we can see you are widely talented, how do you stay focused while maintaining such a challenging schedule?
A: A very critical and sensible point that I highly take into consideration and some might think I’m too over the top with, is being on time and scheduling every aspect of my day. To me time weighs more than money and m every minute counts, by wasting it you are missing out on numerous accomplishments whether social, financial or educational.

Q: Have you always been a multitasker?
A: I never favored multitasking, it doesn’t work and you end up being distracted and stressed and reach a level where you can’t concentrate on all that you have at hand.
What I’m doing is more time management as I’m doing more than one job or activity within my daily timeline spread out at different times throughout my day. As I’ve grown up I’ve learned this skill from my mother. She hasn’t taken as many jobs as I have but I’ve witnessed her role as a dedicated doctor at university and her role as a caring mother at home and a very loyal and loved friend among her peers. She’d always try to accomplish whatever challenge came her way and seeing that has motivated me towards doing many things in life. She believed in the saying ‘nothing is impossible, if there’s a will there’s a way’ and I’ve adopted that motto.

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Q: Being a fitness instructor helps you to stay fit and healthy, what else do you do to stay active?
A: Due to the fact that we spend 3/4s of our lives seated, every little move helps. I usually don’t use lifts in public or residential buildings, I love using stairs. I do a number of easy, practical exercises like pretending to be seated on a chair while drinking water by holding into a squat position. Lifting one leg at a time off the floor and holding my balance in long queues. Changing the water dispenser bottles keeps me pumped as well but my very favourite thing is carrying a bunch of grocery bags trying not to make two trips.

Q: What’s your secret to maintaining an ideal weight?
A: I don’t believe in an ideal weight as that doesn’t exist, it all goes down to what your goal is from training. What I like to see for myself is my weight going up on a scale not down as that means I’m gaining more muscle mass and shedding fat. Others believe in the total opposite which I totally disagree with, our bodies were made to carry, push, pull, and raise things with the help of our muscles. What’s the point in burning these muscles with fat through performing so much cardio and almost zero weight training, unless your goal is to become an anorexic unrealistic model. Later in life you may suffer from osteoporosis due to low bone density and fragility so cardio exercises are important but there is a limit to how much one should do.

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Q: What tips can you share us with on being a good baker?
A: Baking to me means connecting with the ingredients that you’ve bought. It’s about using the five senses throughout the baking process for example smelling the addition of every mixed ingredient at every stage brings so much joy to me and creates harmony. Observing your baked good in its numerous stages to witness its development and final result develops a sharp eye for baking too. Saying what you’re doing out loud and listening to yourself allows you to keep track of the ingredients that you’re adding at every stage and keeps you from forgetting something as it often happens to us all. Lastly, tasting what you’ve successfully or unsuccessfully baked provides room for improvements, satisfaction or change. Catering your recipes to people’s’ needs is what distinguishes you from other bakers I believe, as there’s no such thing as a perfect dish. Each individual enjoys it in a certain way therefore a baker should take that into account when planning for their baking, for example less or more sugar, crunchy or soft, heavy or light, thick or thin and many other differences. Being an original not a copy of a copy of a copy. I dislike copying recipes as I’ve never found that to be ethical. I always change things according to how I believe it should be done, it makes your baked goods taste so special and unforgettable.

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Q: You started your own business in baking, what challenges have you had to overcome?
A: My constant hunt for finding whole sale stocks of certain materials and ingredients as they run out of stock quickly at times or I end up trying other materials or ingredients which makes me take risks at times.

Q: What do you enjoy the most about being a teacher?
A: Supporting budding personalities to the best I can do in most of my students’ aspects of life. A teacher is not simply a person whom gives her classes and leaves, a teacher is an individual whom educates, supports, and tolerates her student and always leaves them with the need for more.
If teachers swapped their titles with the word educators I guess they would understand the responsibility that they have at hand and would embrace their roles a lot more.

Q:You studied in England, Dubai and Jeddah, what positive energy did you gain from these experiences?
A: Being lucky enough to meet treasures whether teachers, trainers, or friends along my long educational journeys. I’ve always believed that places are not what changes human beings it’s the people that we meet and the encounters that we have with them. Many have been debatable about my choice of continuing my higher education in Dubai and I simply replied that many have returned from abroad whether US or UK but not many have made a difference with their foreign degrees but that’s exactly what I want to do.

Q: What is your most significant achievement?
A: Becoming who I am today, a multidimensional young lady with a sky high limit. Another thing that I enjoy doing is helping anyone in need as I truly believe in the saying ‘what goes around comes around’ so I try to let that guide me in life and towards achieving my goals.

Q: What are your strengths?
A: I believe they’re honesty, patience and determination in every aspect of life.

Q: What’s next for Arwa Al-Moghrabi?
A: I don’t know what the future holds for me but I know one thing, no matter what I plan to do I will end up achieving it, God willing, as nothing is impossible. The word impossible contains the word possible in it!

To place your order, you can contact Cookietier Homemade Bakery on:

Whatsapp: +966556697665

BB Pin: 75907EAA

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/cookietier

Instagram: COOKIE_TIER

No delivery.


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