Blogging, Musings

Keeping busy

This year I sort of fell into the new year. We all have hopes and dreams and we make a ton of plans when we have the opportunity to start over or experience newness.

That’s usually the case for me whenever the new year approaches but this time around, with 2019 looking over and 2018 making a quick exit, I found myself with nothing in the way of resolutions or plans for the new year.

Obviously I want to to be beautiful, peaceful, full of love and goodness but I didn’t sit down to write what I would like to achieve this year.

And the weird thing is it didn’t bother me at all that I hadn’t made resolutions and stuff.

I do have goals which I am working towards but these are things that I had going in 2018. So I guess my question is how are you doing this new year? Did you make plans or resolutions?

Oh and here are some of my projects

Advertisements
Musings

Clumsy

We all have that one person who ends up being the klutz in the group or family.

A person who sometimes is so clumsy they are a danger to themselves 😰.

I have never really thought of myself that way; as a klutz or a clumsy person but lately I find myself feeling that way not with actions in the sense that I drop or break things or even hurt myself.

But, I have been feeling it on an emotional level both in the giving and receiving aspect. I feel like with my words, emotions, apathy and empathy, I have been a little bit clumsy in how I say what I say or my reaction and timing.

I don’t know if I should chuck it to being off balance and in a new situation and environment, or if it’s something that’s always been but I hadn’t paid attention or noticed it.

Lately it seems I get my feathers ruffled and my emotions hurt easily and maybe also doing the same. I proceed to feeling low and wanting to wallow which is unhealthy and a quick way to spiral into darker places 😭 believe me.

I tend to read, write, crochet 🧶 / knit 🧶, take care of others, clean, organize etc as a means to think clearer. They are outlets for me and a means of therapy and taking a break from everything else but lately it doesn’t hold as much appeal to do those things either.

So here I am feeling as I do when I experience writers block and the silence isn’t so quite.

Musings

Survived the 1st week

So I just started at my new job and I have gone through being anxious about getting a job to being nervous I was going to mess up the interview to being impatient they wouldn’t call me back.

I got called back and I started at my job on Monday. I came into the office and met with the person I would be taking over the position from and she’s been a blessing to me. She’s super patient, kind, and very good at teaching things that are complex and making them seem simple.

The training has been both fun and quite serious as that’s what the position calls for depending on the season and situation. You have to be the neutral space at the office between staff and clients.

It’s been overwhelming also but that has made me want to get it right and succeed even more. I believe there’s a reason I am there at this point in my life and I pray I learn what it is. I also hope I make a positive impact and change there, improving on what my predecessor has done.

So far so good.

Tell me about when you started your job or at a new place. Any advice on working for and with women?

Musings

Not Culture Shock.

I am always looking out for things I might have missed since moving here. It is easy to have a preconceived idea about a place or people which is something I have come to realize a lot of people have about me ( Nigerians and Africans in general) and I have decided that rather than be offended, I guide as correct if it’s welcomed.

I am always surprised when people don’t expect me to speak fluent English or are surprised when I do and do it with a clear understandable accent.

I have come to learn the difference in culture also that’s can be seen here also in respect to race, age , religion or the lack of it and geographical location.

It’s been an eye opener for me and I am glad to have the opportunity to learn about the way of life of others.

Have you experienced culture shock recently or in the past? What was your experience and how did you deal with it?

Book Review, Musings

Book Review:- Hejira by Deanna Stewart.

This book made me want to cheer!

Hejira by Deanna Stewart took me back to a setting, a genre that I had quite forgotten I enjoy reading.

The Author is very good at immersing you into the story. She delicately paints each scene with just the right amount of words which don’t leave you wound up or overwhelmed.

From the first page I was transported to ancient Persia with its bustling markets and I could smell the incense, admire the sparkling jewels and experience the market scene along with the characters.

The story follows the unlikeliest of heroines

Fatima and Isla. Their journey begins in the kingdom of Chabouk, in a time ripe with tyranny and oppression. Theirs is the tale of the grass is greener on the other-side. They live in a time where women are nothing more than bargaining chips for their fathers and husbands, to be used to gain power, riches, security etc.

Fatima after years of being what her marriage taught her to be realized she didn’t want the same pattern for her generation and in a last hurrah dared to risk it all in a Hejira that became legend.

Her and her little band of misfits teach us that strength can come from the weakest of places and freedom sometimes has to be taken not given.

I like that even though the book is set in ancient times, the themes are still quiet relevant today as women deal with various levels of equality and challenges.

I recommend this book to women of all ages and even men.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/19106606

budget meals, Musings

My Homemade Cranberry Sauce.

Delicious homemade cranberry sauce.

Yo! This is my first time making and tasting cranberry sauce and can I say it is so delicious 😋.

I made mine more tart than sweet though and it was a good move on my part (self high give 🤚🏾) 😂.

This will be my first thanksgiving as it’s not a holiday we celebrate in Nigeria and so I am trying new things and going into the holiday with an open mind. I started preparations a day ahead to give me time to experiment and decide on recipes I ca afford to try lol.

But anyway this recipe is so easy, quick and affordable to make #mealsonabudget 😎. If I can do it so can you.

Ingredients :-

1 bag of fresh cranberries

3/4 cup of brown sugar

1 Tbsp of white sugar

1 lemon 🍋 (squeezed)

1 tsp of lemon zest

2 green apples

1 cup of cranberry grape juice

Make it :-

Rinse the fresh cranberries, pour that in the pot along with the sugars and the juice. Zest your lemon 🍋 and squeeze in the juice without the seeds.

Stir everything together and cook on low heat for about 30mins.

Mine took that long because I had it in really low heat.

Keep an eye on it when it starts to thicken and ensure it doesn’t start to burn.

Be careful when tasting the sauce because it will be scalding hot at this point.

When most of the cranberries pop and look a bit mashed you can then it off and serve it with your pastry 🥮 of choice when it cools down.

Enjoy 😉.

Book Review, Musings

Book Review:- Clara & Pig by Mary Ann Tippet

I was expecting a children’s book when I saw the title because I didn’t read the excerpt or summary before choosing it.

I was pleasantly surprised to see it wasn’t but instead a book about senior citizens. The Author has my appreciation for a wonderful read. I read this in less than two hours and enjoyed every second of it. It’s a page turner and very well written with wonderful descriptions of the characters and their environment.

This book is about Clara and her pet pug named pig who is a very happy dog. Clara’s life is turned upside down as she learns to cope with change while resisting it every step of the way. She’s dealing with loss, pain, loneliness and luckily new friendships.

I wasn’t ready for this book to end! I was really annoyed with the Author when I saw “The End” at the end of the paragraph lol

I would definitely have read more and I am willing to read more from her.

This book made me think of my grandparents and seniors in general. We need to be more kind and understanding towards our elders.

budget meals, cooking / meals, Musings

Lentil Stew

I made Lentil stew for the first time 😍

I bought lentils 2 months ago I think, both the red and green ones and I have avoided them like the plague 🤪.

I looked up so many different recipes but still made no attempt to make some, but this week I said to myself I had to give it a try and boy was I glad I did!

Turns out it’s also very filling 😍.

In my bowl are red lentils that I made with lots of onions (you know I love onions), garlic, scallions, sweet potatoes, tomato sauce (and fresh) bell pepper, meats (beef, chicken and sausage) broth, and seasoning.

And let me just tell you it tastes amazing! I don’t know why I was so afraid to try it before now.

To make it vegan 🌱, just skip the meat and stick to the veggies and roots.

What to do :~

~ Rinse and soak the lentils (I used 1 cup)

~ wash, peel and dice a medium sweet potato 🍠

~ cut up some onions (I used half each of two kinds)

~ cut up 3 green pinions, 1 green bell pepper, crush 2 pieces of garlic.

~ wash two fresh tomatoes and open your can of crushed Tomatoes/ sauce.

~ wash and cut up meats (optional)

~ set broth, herbs 🌿 and seasoning aside.

~ book meats in broth with seasoning, herbs and a little of your veggies for flavor.

Pour your tomato purée of choice in a pot with oil (optional because I didn’t use any oil) fry with onions, garlic and peppers. Add the meats and broth to this.

Pour your lentils which should have doubled in size by now and let cook. Before it’s done add the remaining veggies and sweet potatoes to the mix and let it cook together.

Serve with some fresh veggies of your choice 😋.

I had a bowl in the morning and I didn’t get hungry till around 4pm.

meals on a budget., Musings

Potato soup

It’s soup season.

What are your go to soup recipes?

Musings

Book Review:- Mimi the Deer and Other Stories by Chika Echebiri.

Mimi The Deer and Other Stories by Chika Echebiri.

This little gem consists of 5 short stories including the Title Story.

It’s about 66 pages in total, meaning for me it was a “very” quick read and it includes pictures as this is a children’s book.

Although I am not very clear on the age group this is intended for due to the vocabulary and nature of the stories and it’s telling.

I was really excited getting to read a book from this Author because since I started receiving these books for review I hadn’t gotten one by an African Author no less a Nigerian. Needless to say I was ready for this children’s book.

Each story is set in different regions and I love that the Author was diverse with the locations and the backgrounds of the characters as this will be educational for the kids reading the story and hopefully it means they will be learning something new about a place or people they don’t know.

I believe this book would be better for children who can read by themselves not toddlers because they would better understand the plight of the characters. It’s contains magic, adventure, discovery, lessons, sadness, joy and all the goodies that make children’s books fun and easy to read.

Before I give my final review, here’s a little on each story in the book without the spoilers.

~ A flooding at Madagascar :- This follows the story of a 12 year old boy named Simone and his family. It tells of their experiences during a flood that occurs in their north coastal region.

~ Jamal and the Zebra :- Jamal is an adolescent learning to be a hunter just like his father and during one of his adventures, he gets to be a hero and make the unlikeliest of friends. This friendship just might end up saving his life 😊

~ Jeremiah and the Magic Mushroom:- follows Jeremiah a helpful boy who just might hold magic in his hands.

~ Mimi the deer:- Mimi is a sweet deer who makes friends with a human girl who brings her treats.

~ Penelope’s Garden:- Penelope is a teenager who has developed a green thumb.

All in all my one main problem with the stories is that I kept expecting more to happen before they ended. It felt like there should have been more in a sense and as such I don’t know if middle schoolers would enjoy reading it.

But as this is a short children’s story, I believe the Author kept it short and to the point. Maybe I am just projecting unto the stories.

I recommend this to parents, buy this book for your kids and open them up to stories about children with different backgrounds growing up under different conditions.