Mommy's Khimar

by Jamilah Thompkins-Bigelow and Ebony Glenn

A young girl admires the rainbow of khimars in her mother’s closet. “Some... read more

A young girl admires the rainbow of khimars in her mother’s closet. “Some have tassels. Some have beads. Some have sparkly things all over.” Her mother wears one every day, tucking her hair under the scarf before she leaves the house. On this day, the little girl decides to put one on too, choosing her favorite color, yellow. She imagines herself a queen, a bird, a superhero with a cape; when daddy swings her up, she flies. The khimar smells like her mother: coconut oil, cocoa butter, and cinnamon. Her grandmother, Mom-Mom, doesn’t wear a khimar, or go to mosque. Stopping by after her Sunday service, she calls the little girl “Sunshine” when she sees her draped in yellow. At mosque, older women say, “Assalamu alaikum, Little Sis!” and her Arabic teacher tells her another word for khimar is “hijab.” A story that will resonate with any child who loves dressing up offers a joyful, welcome depiction of an African American Muslim child, her family, and community. (Ages 3–6)

© Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2019

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