​Life after childbirth- A new mum’s guide to managing her day: My practical methods. 

Being a mum is a beautiful thing with a lot of work. It’s a full time job on its own that sometimes and most times sweep you off your feet.

For a first time mum, it’s a whole new adventure, task, responsibility and lots more. I remember when I was pregnant with my first I totally forgot what my normal day was like. On becoming a mum, everything completely changed and I had to readjust to the new life but it was not as easy as I’m typing now.

Because of how I felt at that time and I know how overwhelming it could be especially when you don’t have help around, I’ve summarised below how you can get back to a normal everyday routine, while enjoying the best hood (motherhood). 

Get well first: nine months and delivery is no joke, it’s a life changing experience so you want to put efforts in taking care of your health and getting back on your feet. Get all the rest you can, you’d need it for your new life.

Let people help you: it’s not so easy to assign duties to other people especially when you’re a fan of getting things done yourself and I can totally relate with that. However, little things like doing the dishes, grocery shopping and some other small errands should be left for relatives who volunteer to help. You can also enjoy extra time doing nothing but just staring at your new baby.

Get on the same page with your partner: one of the best help you’d get is your partner’s considering you have him around longer than any other person (for full time partners and normal couples). Let your partner know where you need his help (politely and respectfully) and you’d be surprised at how helpful they can be. Give advance notice so he can also plan his day putting you and your needs into consideration.

Plan ahead: always plan your day a night before. This will help you manage your time better and achieve more. Make a to-do list and follow it well. Remember, your baby is still in hibernation mode (mostly asleep) so make good use of this period and always include rest time in your to-do.

Make meal plans: this is the time to have a meal time table for the week. It’s enough work managing a family, you don’t want “I don’t know what to cook” be another burden to think about. Make a time table, have your partner or a relative pick some things up from the market and pre cook what ever can be and store in the refrigerator. You like fresh food? You’d have freshly made food when you get a hang of motherhood, for now, precook and storage will suffice.

Follow routine: most times, you have a series of tasks for a day, so keep noting it, keep making a to-do list and follow it well, you’d be used to it in no time and it becomes normal.

I hope this article helps in my own little way. It takes a village and I’m in your village. Please let me know what you think. Thank you

P.S: enjoy the moment, you’d only be a new/firat time mum for a short while and that baby won’t be a baby forever so live the moment. 

Open Plans and Pocket Doors: The Nigerian Home

Growing up I really admired foreign architecture, I still do and one physical thing that I observed which is common is that they have open plan. An open plan is where the sitting room, dining room and kitchen are joined together in an open space. You’d see what that looks like as you read on. 
Now, most architect and designers that I have worked with usually tell me we can’t have that in African homes because we don’t want guests to see and know what is going on in our kitchen. After so much searching, asking questions, checking out designs and meeting designers, I finally found a way around it: POCKET DOORS.

 
Pocket doors are usually sliding doors

that extends from the ceiling to the floor,
they sometimes are done to fit into walls and can open up to create an illusion of an empty space that doesn’t have any demarcation.


Pocket doors are perfect for open plan which can be either between the sitting room and dining or between kitchen and dining. Here are some examples from HOUZZ. What do you think? Do you like an open plan and will you give it a try? 

Milia in Babies

Upon the birth of your baby or few days after birth, you might notice some rashes on him/her, this rashes usually look like heat rashes and mostly grandmas and other well wishers will tell you to apply powder, ointment and the likes but there isn’t a need to especially when you’re sure it’s not heat rashes but MILIA!

I experienced it will M and now it’s gone and she has beautiful skin. I didn’t use anything. Read till the end to know what I did.

Milia almost always resolve on their own without treatment but there are some measures you can take when you see it.

1. Don’t press them: don’t attempt to burst the blister like rash. It’s tempting but don’t, it hurts the baby.

2. Don’t rub hard: don’t rub clothes, towel, or anything harsh material on the baby. Dab them when bathing or clothing them.

3. Don’t apply powder: it’s not heat rashes so don’t use powder. Even when it’s heat rashes avoid powder as it has a substance that can choke babies.

Note that as the milia is clearing off, it will peel in order to make a new fresh and healthy skin so don’t be alarmed. It’s just dead skin cells trapped in that is trying to break out and make way for new ones.

If it last longer than a month, see you paediatrician or dermatologist.

Please drop your comments and suggestions. Thank you.

P.S: it takes a village.
 

​FINANCE: HOW TO MANAGE DAILY FAMILY SPENDING.

Happy New Year! Looks like what’s top on everyone’s new year goal list is to be financially independent so this post will help you both as an individual and as a family.

First thing I want you to know is; everybody and family have their own unique way of managing things and situation including finances. However, there are some tips that are commonly used to stay focused when spending and I will share with you tips that have helped my family stay out of debts over time with the hope that it helps you in your daily spending.

Mind you, this is for every family, regardless of how much you make monthly (either so much or not so much) bearing in mind that every family member needs will be accommodated.

Also, I will keep all posts as short and concise as possible in order not to bore you. Enjoy!

IDENTIFY NEEDS FROM WANTS: there are some things you need to get through the month, these are essential items either for members of the family or the house in general like food, fueling the car, paying the bills and the likes. You should get the gist by now and then we have the wants, like getting a new cloth, wristwatch, toy, changing your phone and the list goes on. To stay focused financially, you need to tell yourself that needs come first and wants can come later when there’s a surplus.

MAKE A LIST: write out a list of every family member’s needs and wants. This will guide you and make you stay focused in your spending as well as remember what everyone’s needs are.

PRIORITIZE: take time to check out what’s really important, which should come first on your list and which last. Which of you needs should top the list and which can stay. When all has been sorted out and can be afforded, pick one or two things from everyone’s want list. Stay focused, priority comes first.

SHOP CHEAP: yes, shop cheap. It’s really tempting to walk into a store and conveniently buy groceries but if you do it in the wrong store you might blame yourself. Compare shops, I personally have sampled three great supermarkets here in Ibadan (Grandex, Feedwell and Foodco) and I like the three for all different reasons (post for another day), I also shop at the local markets well and this help me to compare prices and save more. Therefore, take your time to know where you can shop for less in order to save money.

GO CASHLESS: most of us do not like the idea of cashless policy, ATM disappointment, service problem and the likes but they are all blessings in disguise. This is my saying “keep your ATM card in your pocket and your money in the bank” that way you are not tempted to buy unnecessary things that are not in your list. It keeps you focused, disciplined and penny wise. “Go cashless, get disciplined”

SET GOALS FOR FAMILY SAVINGS: this is where you get reward of your money for your money. Open a family savings account, dedicate it to a particular family long term goal like new family car, family vacation and the likes then save up for it from your monthly income/salary/allowance. By that you’d cut from your income to save for something the whole family can look forward to.

I hope this helps you and your family in some way and please do let me know what you think by dropping your comments. 

THE BEAUTY OF A NEW SOUL.

THE BEAUTY OF A NEW SOUL.

It wasn’t an heavy downpour
Neither was it a drizzle
It was in-between
Perfect
I raced out to escape the insanity
But abruptly stopped
Dragging my soul
Through the droppings of sky’s joyful tears
Taking it all in
Along with the chills it brings forth
I wasn’t happy
Neither was I sad
I was contented
I was thankful
To see, feel, taste
The sweet but tasteless liquid of the rains
I have time
All the time
Uninterrupted
And then, it striked me
I was bringing forth …..another soul
A beautiful soul
I reached for my heart
Not my bump
Cos I’m doing it with my heart
….with love.

5 THINGS YOU WERE NOT TOLD ABOUT PREGNANCY.


I’ve had sisters, aunties, friends, neighbours and many other pregnant people around me and they give the gist about their experience, the way they feel, baby’s first kick, the first trimester nausea and the likes. I thought I was told all and knew all about it until now, NO, I’ve not been told all about it, I don’t know all about it and really I can’t know all about it.
At some stages in my pregnancy, I had some strange experience that I thought had nothing to do with pregnancy, some I thought could hurt my baby. Nobody ever said anything about these things happening (maybe it skipped their mind or maybe it didn’t happen to them).
These experiences gave birth to this article, in order to help someone that might be going through the same thing or just to prepare you if it eventually happens. This article cannot tell you all the things you were not told about pregnancy and it might not necessarily happen to you because ALL PREGNANCY ARE DIFFERENT, non is the same, not even a person’s pregnancy is and no matter how much you take pregnancy classes or have someone tell you about it, IT CAN NEVER BE LIKE THE EXPERIENCE, EVER! but you would learn something new. Make sure you read till the end, there’s something everybody needs to know.
NAUSEA: tiredness, spitting, throwing up, weakness, irritation, morning sickness and everything in-between. Were you told you’d have mood swings, get tired of drinking water, dislike almost all you used to like, get really cranky at the slightest touch and by afternoon/evening you are back to energetic mode? Look, sometimes it gets worse, for me I hated the smell of our apartment and I once suggested we move out, it was so bad I wanted to leave the house at any slight opportunity and I dreaded returning home, I tried all air freshener to change the smell of the house but it just made it all worse.
I didn’t want to eat anything made by me (that I was told) but nobody told me it’s not about who cooks it, for me, it was about food generally, especially food prepared in my kitchen, I was just tired.
Another thing I wasn’t told about first trimester is that I’d dread sleep. When it was bed time, I’d cry silently and wish I didn’t have to sleep because I knew I’d wake up to been tired with disgusting sensations in my mouth which nobody wants to look forward to.
Like I said, no experience is the same and you cannot prepare enough for this phase of your life so just go with the flow.
SMELL IRRITATION: let me tell you, you favorite lotion, body spay, shower gel, powder, air freshener and other fragrance will later nauseate you. Maybe you were told but nobody told you that irritation would include your favorite things and at some point, I goes beyond these and extends just anything with fragrance. I just wanted everything around me to be odourless or unperfumed.
As time went by, unprocessed shear butter became my body cream and I concluded perfumes and body spray would be on break till after I had my baby.
DIZZINESS AND SHORT OF BREATH: I was at my desk in the office working on the computer and suddenly I was feeling dizzy, dehydrated and desperate to get more air through my lungs, at first I couldn’t explain the feeling, it was sudden and immediately I could not sit any longer. What came to my head then was “TAKE WATER AND LIE DOWN” I drank some water, reached for a mat and obeyed my instinct. I had a small nap in my corner at the office and I woke up feeling better.
Upon waking up, I reached for my phone to read about dizziness and short of breath during pregnancy and WHOLLA, I saw that things like these are normal when in state, it most times due to tiredness. However, when you find yourself feeling like that, lie down on your left side immediately if you cannot get to do that, then sit down and rest your back. Don’t fight it by ignoring it and keep working. Stay hydrated and rest well during this period.
LEG CRAMPS: I’d wake up in the middle of the night with a sudden sharp muscular pain at the back of my leg (my yams area) and it could last 10 seconds that feels like five minutes. Sometimes, it was upon waking up in the morning in the course of stretching. The first time I thought I had stretched too far and my body couldn’t stretch that much, I never thought it had anything to do with pregnancy. Then, it happened again and again and I knew it wasn’t normal so like I always do I checked it up.
Then I learnt leg cramps are normal during pregnancy because the baby weight is resting on the muscles of the leg, so it’s like your leg is carrying extra luggage, hence the reason for the cramps. What worked for me: hubby would help lift up the led till the pain was gone then he’d massage through the back of my leg folding it in and out.
SORE FEET: I didn’t have preeclampsia (condition of swollen feet in pregnancy that causes water logged soreness) but if you don’t know what preeclampsia is, you’d think I had it. Starting from my fifth month, my feet were constantly swollen and it got bigger and bigger. At some point around my seventh month I had to be on flip flops. I often relieve this stress my placing my leg on the pillow over night which really helped.
TIREDNESS: when you get to a certain point, you’d just get tired of carrying that big tummy around and you’d wish someone can just take out the baby for you. At around the eighth month I was counting days and studying the calendar, I was always tired, always cranky and the last month felt like forever, but guess what, I miss pregnancy now and I can “experience-lly” say “enjoy it while it last” because your little pretty bundle will grow really fast and you’d wish you can freeze time or rewind to the last trimester and relive all the baby/nursing/adorning/admiring moments.
AMAZEMENT: as much as you might read or heard or researched about pregnancy, everything about pregnancy will amaze you, from knowing you’re expecting, nausea, gradual body changes that you just suddenly notice one morning, the thin black line on your stomach, the kicks down to becoming a mum for the first time.

THE TWO SIDES TO A PALLAZO

Palazzo trend is on the rise. It’s safe to say demand for it has increased in recent time and as much as people see it like a modern day fashion trend, it’s actually very vintage.
Personally, I have found solace in palazzo both for formal and non-formal outing. The comfort it gives is of first class. It’s very comfy, easy to wear and also easy to style.
To formalize the palazzo, all it takes is a blazer, jacket or even shirt. Whenever I decide to wear palazzo to work, I pair it with a blazer or a proper corporate shirt and a proper shoe just to formalize it and sincerely it has never failed me.
For a non-formal, more relaxed look, I sometimes and mostly do a body top but recently, I decided to take a risk and leave my comfort zone and for me, it paid off. Apart from the fact that I liked the look, I also loved the feel. Comfort is priority for me when dressing except on rare occasions when girl has to look a little bit extra *wink* we all have that moment we are not comfy but enjoying the glam life. It was not the case for this outfit, I felt very comfortable and relaxed in this long free top paired with my tailor sown palazzo and to top it up, I just put my leg in some easy pam.
Here is the look. Let me know what you guys think in the comment below and let’s connect on my social media platform, remember it takes a village. Love, RAA.

Nature’s Beauty Travelogue.

So sorry about the post, apparently there was a mix up and I lost the write up but the summary is these shots were taken all on motion, highway speed and there was no filter at all, not even cropping. I dedicate this post to my nature mate explorer, Aisha.
After many years, I embarked on a long distance road trip again this time with hubby who has never traveled this far before because he hates it but trust me at the end of the journey, he was happy he did. We enjoyed the natural sites and ambiance it had. Enjoy and subscribe for the next post in the travelogue series.

BASMA FOR THE THROWBACK- Neutral Esembles

Can we all take a moment to throw it back to all the time Basma K rocked our world with neutral outfits and ensembles? It’s been a long time we’ve been watching that space on instagram (since 2013) and we all would admit that our likeness for neutral combo has grown over time because every time we see that neutral outfit post we want to rock it.

As much as we have our favorite looks of Basma’s neutral combo, some of us would admit there were some times we didn’t get the WOW factor.

Going through the almost 900 picture post was a fun thing for me and it would surprise you that as much as Basma likes neutrals (obviously) and as much as we think half of her posts are made up of neutral outfit pictures, its only about 30, YES! About 30 outfits in neutrals and trust most of them were on point (most).

Following this trend back to 2013, we’d all agree Basma’s style has grown over the years as her style has become more sophisticated but ladies, get used to the “Basma K hijab style” that, has definitely come to stay.

In order not to bore you, as this post should be more of pictures, these are throwback pictures of when Basma has rocked our world with neutral ensembles and hey ……there’s a style inspo for everyday of the week. Enjoy!

Habiba Da Silva- Skin … My Own Review

So Habiba Da Silva aka Lifelongpercussion just launched her new, anticipated line called “Habiba Da Silva- SKIN” and I’m blown at how well she kept it hidden and how wonderfully people responded to the campaign as two of the scarf type (Ruskhsati & Aroosadda) is now sold out.

Firstly, I didn’t have a clue what it was about but she definitely got me with the campaign which had me follow the new page immediately, couple of weeks ago when she started raising our curiosity. Then I thought could it be a makeup line? Then it struck me “oh it should be an awareness campaign on how to live together in unity cos it shouldn’t be a scarf line, that would be too easy”.

Right now as I sit down in front of my computer I tell myself as much as this is a revenue generating scarf line which most people would see and which is the obvious, to me, this is a campaign of celebration of colour, racial equality and gender awareness.

Don’t forget Habiba was an English major as an undergrad and she was on the creative path and still is anyways. She showed this in the names given to each scarf as they are marriage terms and we all know marriage is the coming together of two entities (union, togetherness, unity) name it, this again signifies her campaign of unity. Well done girl!!!

Personally, I’m proud and really happy that Habibah has used her social media presence to launch not only a line but a campaign to say everyone is equal and in my own words “every person matter, regardless of the skin type”.

Consciously or unconsciously, everybody that purchased the scarf, yet to purchase it, followed the campaign page, follows “lifelongpercussion” has and will learn one or more things from her message and like I said earlier one of my first thoughts was “oh it’s an awareness campaign on how to live together in unity” which of course to me, it.

So, BEYOND THE FABRICS, BEYOND THE FASHION STATEMENTS, BEYOND THE SALES…..”EMBRACE THE SKIN” CAMPAIGN.