15 November 2018Last updated

Real Women

5 minutes with Jumana

As co-founder of The Happy Box, Jumana Darwish is determined to help families up their happiness levels. Go on, give her a smile...

By Belle Yates
1 Mar 2016 | 12:00 am
  • Source:Supplied

Sum up motherhood in three words.

“Love” like no other, incredibly “fulfilling” and “hard work”.

What’s your favourite place to take your daughter?

I love going to the beach with Ayla and watching the sunset. It’s the one place where I can truly disconnect and be in the moment with my little one.

What’s your fail-proof back-up plan for when you don’t have time to cook dinner?

I enjoy cooking and make time for it always. It’s my way of unwinding and the best kind of therapy ever. Dinnertime is the one meal where we get a chance to sit together as a family and connect. We have a family dinner ritual where we talk about our daily happy moments and things we wish we could have done better.

What’s the best thing about living in Dubai?

There’s never a dull moment. There are always new things to do; it’s a constant adventure, especially if you have a little one.

Where’s your favourite place for date night?

My favourite place is Roberto’s. It’s always been the perfect place for my husband and I to bond and catch up on our busy week.

What parenting goals/strategies have you inherited from your mother?

My mother is the definition of a super mama. She was a diplomat’s wife and at times had to take care of all six of us on her own while my father was deployed on various country missions – at times for many months. She is a constant source of strength, love and inspiration. She has taught my siblings and I resilience, patience and, most importantly, humility.

If you had one extra hour in the day, what would you do with it?

Sleep. I normally sleep 4-5 hours a day if I’m lucky so, like many of us mamas, I could totally use that extra hour of beauty sleep.

What made you start up The Happy Box?

It all began on New Year’s Day 2014 over French toast at Norma’s in New York City. Despite feeling incredibly blessed, I was unhappy with the lack of quality time I got to spend with my daughter. I knew other families felt the same – life is so demanding, and taking a few minutes to focus on family and on creating beautiful moments has to become a priority.

What three things do you never leave home without?

My phone, my wallet and my red lipstick (it’s an instant upper).

What is your idea of a perfect weekend?

Spending time with my family and Chubby, our adorable pup. He is so entertaining and Ayla loves him to bits. There’s never a dull moment with those two around!

What’s your golden tip on juggling a career and motherhood?

I think it’s important for women to know that if they desire both, then it is possible! Mostly I stay calm and try my best to manage everything with a positive attitude. Life is an adventure; you might as well enjoy every moment.

By Belle Yates

By Belle Yates