An investment: The importance of showing up for others.

I remember it so vividly. It is so fresh in my mind. Almost like it was just yesterday. But this happened quite a few months back.

I came home from work at around 7 p.m. I asked the nanny how she and my baby were doing and she said that they were doing OK. In fact, my baby was all jumpy as he came to give me a hug. We sat down and he started talking to me in his baby Gibberish and I responded back. We went ahead to have a conversation as I told him about my day and he told me about his. The only problem was that none of us understood the other.

Soon, the distinctive smell of baby poop was in the air and I decided to change his diaper. As soon as I took out the dirty diaper, he started shivering uncontrollably. The kind of shivering where there is teeth grinding and moving hands and legs. I was super scared.

I do not know what came to my mind or what took over me. I rushed out and knocked at my neighbor’s door and didn’t wait for her to open. I let myself in and without any courtesy started telling her something was wrong with my baby. I told her that Lowell’s dad was not round and I did not have the slightest idea what to do.

I remember how she told me not to worry and immediately called her hubby and we made a split decision to take the baby to the hospital. Remember how bad things strike at once??I had forgotten my bedroom keys in hubby’s bag and therefore had no money, no diapers and the baby bag was also in my closed bedroom. My good neighbor packed a bag for me with diapers and everything and her husband drove me and baby to the hospital, waited until we saw the doctor, paid the bill and drove us back home.

I will never forget their kindness. They showed up for me and I promised to always show up for them.

showing up for others

It is so important to show up for others. Being an introvert of sorts, who is slowly mutating into an extrovert, this topic has become so dear to me. I now make an effort to show up for the most important people in my life.

When someone comes to you for help, always strive to show up for them. When someone invites you to their ruracio (dowry ceremony), to their wedding, to their baby’s birthday, to something important to them, the least you can do is show up.

When your friend loses a loved one, or fails to get that job they had high hopes of getting: you better show up. Go and comfort them. Go and have a cup of tea or coffee with them. Go and watch their favorite tv show with them. Offer some type of kindness and uplift their spirits.

Oh, and ladies, when your friend gives birth, show up please. Go visit them, cook for them, wash their clothes and hold their babies.

Showing up for other people is like an investment. It is repaid at a later date, with accumulated interest. In fact, showing up is one of the basic ingredients to a great friendship. No one wants a friend that never shows up. I know I don’t.


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Why am excited for September!!

wake up determinedThere are those times in our lives that we just want to look at the bad things and just focus on the crazy. I don’t know whether its the weird mentality that was wired within us from an early age that being happy all the time is not possible…I just don’t get it.

Thinking about this post, I was scared to focus on the things I was looking forward to in September. My focus was a little bit off…OK..way off because I didn’t really think there were good things waiting for me in September.

But as I started thinking harder about it, I realized that September is gonna be a beautiful month. There is so much to look forward to. SO SO MUCH.

  1. My baby is turning two. His birthday will be on a Monday but we will definitely find a way to celebrate. For people with older kids, it might be hard to understand why two years seems like such a big deal. But to me, it is such a big deal. My first born is growing old and he is walking and talking and making all sorts of awkward sentences and I love it. In fact, I want to freeze these moments and just make him grow in slow motion so that I can enjoy him a lot more. I still can’t believe he will be 2…I hope this brings out his sweetness and not his tantrums!!
  2. Am excited about more work. I know most people hate having to work more, but am the opposite. I love it when am busy. I love the strict deadlines and I enjoy the pressure. It makes me feel alive. In fact, when things are a bit slow, I feel weird and bored and demotivated. I love working hard. It gives a certain kind of pleasure and satisfaction I cannot explain. I actually wanna meet more people like me…If you are out there..Holla!
  3. Am alive. Am excited that I am alive this month. That I have the opportunity to chase my dreams and to see things I’ve worked hard for come to fruition. It is so exhilarating to know that this month is another opportunity for me to be my best and to go further in achieving my potential.
  4. Am excited for kisses. For ‘I love you’s’, for hugs, for fun times with my girls, and for a joy-filled heart.

I wish you a beautiful September.

Much love.

When your baby (heart) is far away from you

lowell and me

My baby is my heart, hence the title.

My Lowell has been away at his grandma’s for more than a week now. And I feel empty. I lack purpose. I lack the motivation to cook, or to eat, or to go to work.

Don’t get me wrong. I do all these things everyday (of course am not gonna starve to death), but I lack the motivation or the drive that I have when he is around.

To summarize it in 3 powerful words…

I miss him.

The point of this visit to my mum’s place is that we want to start a new tradition, or keep an old tradition anyways. I remember when we were young, we would go visit our grandmothers during the holidays. We had so much fun and were spoiled beyond repair. Grandparents’ love is like no other. I see it in the way my hubby loves his grandma and how she loves him back. Its precious.

Being their first grandchild, I know my parents love my son with every little bit of their wonderful hearts.

grandma quotephoto credit

But more importantly, I know that Lowell loves them so much. (Am tearing up right now). He is so happy with my mum. You should see them playing around and laughing so hard. Its beautiful. Don’t get me talking about how adorable it is to hear my oh so strong Daddy talking Kikuyu to my son, who understands none of it but nods in agreement.

I want my baby to know this love and to feel it in his heart and to treasure it, so that when he is back, he misses his grandparents.

But its taking a toll on us. I woke up yesterday very early to scroll through his pictures on my phone. I was doing it secretly, but soon after I caught my hubby watching videos of Lowell on his phone. We miss him terribly.

I now realize how big the part he plays in our lives is. A part?? Who am I kidding. He is everything. He is our life.

I feel for those mums who have to leave their kids and go to school, or go work in a foreign city or worse, different country. I now know the kind of sacrifice they make. I feel for the mums who have lost their babies. Its tough and only God can give them peace.

I miss the tantrums, the cries, the hair pulling, the craziness, the broken toys, the scolding and the tough love moments. But what I miss most are the hugs, and the kisses. The loud high-pitched voice calling ‘Mommy’ and ‘Daddy’ hundreds of times each day.

I miss his weird sleeping habits. I miss waking up in the middle of the night to find his legs on my face, and the midnight stomach punches. (I promise, am moving him to his bed asap)

I miss it all.

See you soon baby.

Tuesday

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When you least expect it,
Something great will come along, Something better than you even planned for.
Be smart.
Be patient.
Stay focused.

My C-Section Experience. Read then Decide. Don't Rush.

c-section

My baby will be turning 2 exactly three weeks from today. Its so sweet to see him reach his milestones and am awed by how fast these two years have gone. However, the days towards his birthday often become a reminder of the things I went through to bring him into this world.

I do remember those last weeks of August 2013, how heavily pregnant I was, and how much I just wanted to sleep all day and do nothing. I remember how we moved to a bigger house so that we would have more space to raise the baby. I do remember how much yogurt I had, as it was the only thing that took away the weird taste in my mouth. I remember taking a break from work, and thinking what a sacrifice that was. I just discovered that I never posted his birth story yet I remember typing it out. #forgetfulmama

As the days moved closer to my due date, I began getting a little scared. By the way, my baby was born one week past his due date. I had my bags packed, and like the planner I am, I was actually ready weeks before. I read a lot of articles on what to expect and I thought since I had a pretty normal pregnancy, the delivery would also be the same. I had also been very active during my pregnancy, and my hubby used to take me for long walks to make sure I had an easier time giving birth (If anything like an easy birth exists!!).

And so when the labor kicked in on that 14th day of September (a Saturday), I felt confident that everything would go as expected. (Expectations are the worst, they can kill you). However, things didn’t go as planned.

I was dilated 4cm when I was admitted at around 9 a.m in the morning, and little did I know that there would not be much progress from there. One of the nurses told me to take a walk around the hospital to quicken the dilation. I came in to get checked at 1 pm and the Doppler showed that my baby’s heartbeat was too fast. The nurse looked a little bit worried and told me to take a nap and rest to try and calm him down. Please note I was still in labor. Several hours later, his heart was still racing and a doctor was called in, and within minutes, I was wheeled down to the theater for an emergency c-section. At 9.25 p.m. Lowell Sedar was born.

Fast forward to 1.25 am, I regained consciousness for a few minutes and I remember asking one of the nurses for my baby. She said he was in the nursery and would be brought to me when I was feeling better. I went back to a deep slumber and woke up at 5 am to find a male nurse handing me my bundle of joy. I wish I could freeze that moment, but it is etched in my memory forever.

The moment I realized the kind of pain associated with a c-section was when I tried to get off my bed to go to the washroom. It was horrible, the pain was crazy and though I had been given strong painkillers, it was just so painful. I did not manage to get to the bathroom and I waited until someone could come and hold my hand.

For the next few weeks, I got used to this pain. I needed help getting off a chair, off my bed, taking a shower, lifting my baby, and pretty much everything. It was hard to wake up in the middle of the night to feed and comfort my crying baby. I remember how traumatizing it was thinking that someone cut my tummy and sew it back. Ouch!! The only comfort was the sight of my baby. C-section recovery is not easy and it takes months and its super crazy. This is why I find it hard to think that one would freely choose to go under the knife.

It scares me to think that I want other babies, and most likely I will have more c-sections because my body refuses to open up. Am terrified of the day after, the struggle of needing so much help to do the most basic things. It is scary to think that 2 years later, lifting something heavy might cause trauma to my c-section scar, which can lead to serious complications. It is scary to think that being pregnant again could stretch my scar too far.

However, this post is not meant to scare anyone. This is just my experience, my story and I would love to hear yours. Also, not all c-sections are the same, in fact none are similar. This is especially so for those of use who cannot go through a normal delivery, but if you can, please stick to that. Because it is natural and so much less riskier. Please.

I know I will weather the next c-section and the next one too, because the sight of my beautiful babies will give the pain so much more meaning. It makes you forget. And as I hear Lowell saying ‘av you’ (love you), it makes it all worth it.

My go-to easy breezy hairstyle, perfect for busy working mums

Motherhood is craaaaazy…This is a well-known fact and I have come to appreciate it even more. What would make a writer like me suddenly stop blogging for I don’t know how many months????

You guessed right-Motherhood. I have been super busy now that am a working mother to an almost two year-old boy. Oh my Oh my..how days keep flying by and I can’t seem to hold onto any moment..however beautiful.

In order to keep up with this busy lifestyle, I have learned a few tricks that make my mornings less stressful. I definitely do not have time to attend to an elaborate hairstyle, while dealing with my crying son when am leaving in the morning. Lots of mommy bloggers have tips on how to simplify the morning routine and I have been applying them religiously.

I have recently discovered the high-top bun hairstyle, which has made my life so much easier.

high top bun 2

It is super easy and super chic. It makes me look like am calm and collected, and like I took time to look good, even when I actually didn’t. Just comb your hair lightly, hold it high with a thick hairband (as we call it) or a hair scrunchie, then roll the hair into a bun around the band. That’s it, no stress, no hassle. In a matter of minutes am ready.

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Add a dash of lipstick or gloss to the lips, and you suddenly look like a super chic, stylish mom. As much as Lowell (my son) likes to mess with my hair, this is difficult to mess with and I can redo it in 10 seconds when need arises. Check it out below, don’t mind the scarf. I wear it because my office is quite cold.

high top bun front
Final result

Try it, you will love it.

Hope to get my blogging groove back asap to keep you engaged. Thanks loves!

How to Become a Better Cook in 7 Easy Steps

Cooking is one of the most enjoyable hobbies. However, most people end up hating it because they do not have the necessary skills to make professional meals. It is important to note that cooking is not as difficult as it seems. With a little effort and time investment, one can develop their cooking skills.

Instead of letting the passion for cooking die due to a number of kitchen failures, learn how to become a better cook in 7 easy steps.

1.) When one seeks to master any skill, practice is essential. Cooking is no different. For persons who wish to become better cooks, it is important to get in the kitchen and actually cook. Some people are so afraid of failure in the kitchen, that they stay away completely.

The only way that one can improve one’s cooking skills is by cooking more often. This will expose them to different recipes and sharpen their culinary skills. If a person is cooking on a regular basis, identifying areas of weakness and improving on them helps one to become a better cook within a short time.

2.) Having the right cooking equipment is a positive step towards becoming a better cook. Using low-quality equipment can be highly frustrating since burnt or tasteless food is common. For example, using an oven that is not working properly can result in undercooked or overcooked foods.

Bad equipment does not always signify that a person is a bad cook. However, it is important to acquire the right equipment that supports the improvement of cooking skills.

3.) A good cook knows when improvisations is applicable and when to strictly follow measurements. As one builds cooking experience, one is able to recognize recipes that could do with a few changes. This can help in redefining recipes to suit the individual preferences.

It is important to experiment with a variety of recipes, as this helps in building cooking skills. One may experience failure a couple of times, but eventually one is successful. Getting a meal right for the first time after several failures is a sign that one is becoming a better cook.

4.) For one to develop their cooking skills, it is important to be find inspiration from others. One can use cookbooks, magazines and websites to find new recipes. From here, one can move to developing original recipes that suit their needs.

5.) The right ingredients are particularly important in coming up with perfect meals. It is advisable to get all the ingredients that a recipe calls for, for better results. Visiting the local farmers market can be useful in finding fresh ingredients that produce excellent results.

6.) Cooking should be approached from a professional perspective, with cooks having a clear set of goals and undivided focus. A good cook has a plan of what one is cooking, what ingredients they require and what time it will take to complete. Without a good plan, it is possible to get distracted by other things such as television and mobile phones. This usually results in poorly done food, discouraging individuals from bettering their cooking skills.

7.) It is important to challenge oneself once in a while and to have fun while cooking. One should move out of their comfort zone and try challenging recipes that require more defined skills. This is the only way to upgrade one’s skills to a higher level.

Taking these simple steps can help a person become a better cook within a short time. It takes a positive attitude to appreciate that failure in the kitchen, brings one closer to perfecting their cooking skills.