Sunday, April 30, 2006

Hello May, and My Dream Job challenge

SSo April ends and we welcome in May. A good start to the month- it’s a bank holiday today! And what better time to do another Challenge?

I get the funny feeling that loads of us as are stuck doing jobs that well, we frankly don’t enjoy. We are doing them because we have to (those bills), we are afraid of change (snug in our comfort zones), or we haven’t yet discovered what our passion really is, so we are just marking time doing what we are doing. So here is a chance for your imaginations to run wild.

This challenge is called

MY DREAM JOB. Some prompts have been provided to help you along, but by all means make up your own..

My Dream Job

Describe your dream job.
What time would you start?
Where would your job be?
How would you get to work?
What would you wear?
How much would you get paid?
Who would your clients/customers be?
What will your core tasks be?
What would the perks of your job be?
How will you measure your success?

The job doesn't have to entail being an employee, it can be your very own business.

You have a week for this challenge that means posts should be up by

Monday 8th of May.

Please leave a comment to let me know you will be participating and a link to your post when you have put it up. A lot more people participated in the last challenge but didn’t bother to leave a comment and I only stumbled on them quite by chance. By leaving a comment I am encouraged to carry on.


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My Money and Me

Here are some great money related do's and dont's I want to share. I don’t know where I got them from, but I have had the list tucked away between the pages of my bible.

I must accept responsibility for my financial future.

God blesses the actions of men and women who are not afraid to make a move.

Current assets should be approximately 2 times greater than current liabilities.

The gifts God has given me are enough to bring me bore great men.

Jealousy over other’s success kills my own creativity and dampens my influence.

A budget can bring focus to my financial affairs.

Know where my money is going- keep accurate accounts of all spending.

Save receipts from all transactions and record amounts on a budget log.

Always expect, ask for and get a receipt.

A budget is not to restrict me from enjoying life, but it is to help me focus my finances on those goals that will allow me live a fulfilling life.

Use any credit I have wisely. Don’t spend up to my credit limit.

Learn to distinguish between my needs and wants.

Discipline in finances is one of the signs of being a disciple.

If I cannot handle the temptations of over extending on my credit cards, get rid of them.

Pay all my bills on time.

Paying the minimum amount on a bill should be the exception rather than the rule.

Don’t waste my hard earned money on lottery or games of chance.

Seed time and harvest time are biblical principles that work.

Plan to save or invest a set % of my income every month.

Have my pay sent directly to my savings account.

Deposit any refunds, bonuses, unexpected gifts into my savings accounts – or change into hard currency.

Don’t raise my standards of living the next time I get a raise – I must invest it instead.

Teach my children money management skills – they will carry those lessons through out their lives.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

A Book Meme

1. Grab the nearest book.
2. Open the book to page 123.
3. Find the fifth sentence.
4. Post the text of the sentence in your journal/blog along with these instructions.

search around and look for the coolest book you can find. Do what's actually next to you.

'Combine oatmeal, water, and salt.' - the receipe for Grandma Louise's oatmeal and grated apple from French women don't get fat by Mireille Guiliano

Friday, April 21, 2006

How to get a Postcard sent to you from Nigeria

Just found THIS on my www crawl.

Book Buying Frenzy

I have been on a book buying frenzy again. In the last two weeks I have bought

1. I Know I'm in There Somewhere: A Woman's Guide to Finding Her Inner Voice and Living a Life of Authenticity Helene G. Brenner, Laurence Letich

2. If2...: 500 New Questions for the Game of Life by Evelyn McFarlane, James Saywell

3. All About ME: Millennium Edition by Philipp Keel

4. The Best Year of Your Life: Dream It, Plan It, Live It by Debbie Ford

5. Artist's Way, 10th anniversary edition by Julia Cameron

6. Hallelujah! The Welcome Table by Maya Angelou

7. The Collected Autobiographies of Maya Angelou by Maya Angelou

This really is getting out of hand. Where am I going to find the time to read them all???

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Do the Shuffle

Got this here

Turn your MP3 player on random and list the first 15 tracks it plays (regardless of how embarrassing they may be):

  1. The Future – Prince

  2. Awesome in this place – Keith Staten

  3. Love U, But don’t trust you anymore – Prince

  4. Freedom now – Tracy Chapman

  5. I love New York – Madonna

  6. Patience – George Michael

  7. With Him – Babyface

  8. Kiss – Prince

  9. Shuffering and Shmiling – Fela

  10. Home – Will Young

  11. Refuge – John Legend

  12. Blame it on my youth – Jamie Cullum

  13. Stolen Moments – Alicia Keys

  14. I am the God that healeth thee – Don Moen

  15. Alu Jon Jonki Jon – Fela

Talk about a mixed bag! But I think Prince wins.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Thank You’s and some Weekly Challenge Fun

Thank you to everyone who participated in the ‘Letters to My Younger Self’ self- discovery challenge. I was hoping for a much bigger response but I guess it takes time for stuff like this to grow on people.

To read all the letters that were posted see the blog links below

1. Ore's Notes
2. Rombo
3. Adunni
4. Onada
5. Everchange
6. Nneka's World
7. Olawunmi
8. Trae
9. naija dude

Thank you all so much for throwing yourselves in and sharing. Much appreciated!

Feedback was that much fun was had and the writers enjoyed the soul searching journey it took them on. So following on from this  …..

I thought how exciting it will be to turn this into a regular thing which any and everyone can participate in.

The general concept is that every week a prompt/subject will be posted here and we’ll all have a week to mull over it and post something about it on our blogs. The prompt will appear on a particular day (say every Wednesday) and the posts will be put up a week later.

The motivation behind it to have some fun and to provide anyone who enjoys writing (or is suffering from writers block) with inspiration. It is could also be, sometimes, a journey of self discovery.

But here’s the catch – this weekly ‘challenge’ needs YOU to succeed. So if you’re up for it then leave a comment and depending on the response I get, I’ll go ahead and start putting something together.

So if you’ve never done something like this before and would like to muck in, here’s your chance!!

PS: If you took part in 'Letters to my Younger Self', please leave a comment and link on my blog.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Blog to Be You

There seems to come a point when the question is asked ‘Why am I blogging’? Should I move my blog in a particular direction? Should I have a theme for my blog? Am I interesting enough? Will people want to read this?

I say STOP IT!

Blog for fun.
Blog because you want to get stuff off your chest.
Blog because you want to share.
Blog because you have an opinion – or don’t have one.
Blog because it’s your blog.
Blog just because!

I blog for all the reasons above and more. For me it’s a meeting place of like and not so like minds. It’s a place of discovery, a place that’s a constant surprise. Of finding people to be fundamentally the same and quite unique and different all at the same time.

Society already puts enough pressure on us to conform to its man made rules and beliefs and preconceptions of what we can or can’t say, think, feel.  I certainly don’t want that spreading over to my blog. We should all be free to use this medium as an expression for who we are and what we feel. If I want to blog about my faith today and then talk about the way I brew a cup of tea the next, then I will.

Don’t worry if think you are boring or ‘same, same’. Aren’t we all at some point or another? Wouldn’t it be awful if we were all so interesting all the time?  I say, quit trying so hard and just be yourself. You are not here to please anyone but you. Don’t apologise for who you are.

I am not here to change the world with my blog. I am only here to be who I am.


Life is too short.

Have fun.

Blog on.

Letter to My Younger Self

these are not a list of RULES but snippets of ADVICE I wish I had had at your age

Dear Younger Self,


are beautiful both inside and out. It sounds clichéd but it’s true. Believe this deep inside yourself and don’t base your self worth on what others think of you.


fall into the trap of thinking that you have to be part of a couple to feel complete. Put romance on hold for a while and enjoy your singleness. You don’t have to kiss quite so many frogs to find your prince charming. Sex does not equal love.


sign any love letters!


not to pour your heart out to everyone who comes your way. Keep some things scared and hold back a little bit of yourself – maintain an air of mystery, it makes you more interesting.


think about the consequences of your actions.


is not a dress rehearsal- you only get one shot at it. So live like each day is your last. Be true to yourself and put to good use your God given talents.Go with what you are passionate about and not with the grades you got in your final exams. Don’t get sidetracked into a career that others think you would be good at. Instead, do what you know you will be great at.


finally, darling all things are permissible but not all things are beneficial. God knows best. Always. So don’t put Him on hold.

Much love,

Your Older Self

Saturday, April 15, 2006

A Simple Day

hat a wonderful day I had yesterday. The whole day seemed to have a flow about it. Like pieces of a jigsaw slotting neatly together.

I woke up to glorious sunshine streaming through our bedroom window and that straight away set my mood for the rest of the day – happy. It made such a change after endless months of waking up to grey skies, bleak weather and ever dipping temperatures. Now it seems summer is winning its battle and is making a grand entrance at last.

The first half of the day saw us in the city trawling the shops for last minute gifts for my husband to take along for family and friends when he makes a ten day trip back home next week. It’s something I don’t normally look forward to as shopping has lost a bit of it’s fascination for me (everything in the shops these days seems to look the same- skinny jeans, cropped tops and cheap looking accessories) plus the family seems to be ever increasing so buying even one present per person only ends up costing a small fortune. But this time it wasn’t too bad as we were armed with a list which speeded things along greatly.

This done, I walked into Gap (one of my favorite places to shop) and low and behold they were having a sale!! What joy! I whipped out the gift voucher I got for my birthday four months ago and prepared myself for a bit of retail therapy. With hubby and daughter busying themselves elsewhere I set to work and was duly rewarded with a lovely denim distressed look ankle length skirt and a pair of bright pink and red boat shoes ( a purchase my hubby didn’t quite get, but I love them!! ). I walked out of the shop looking like a cat that had got the cream.

Then we came home, had lunch lazed about for a bit and then at six O’clock it was off to the park. It was just so lovely walking on the grass, playing catch with my daughter, watching her on the swings and riding her bike with her daddy filming it all to show to everyone back home. It was the best feeling in the world knowing that I was a part of this special unit. At about 7:30 pm (and yes the sun was still out in full force) we started making tracks back home.

As we didn’t have any milk at home we decided to make a quick stop at the BP station Somerfield express shop to pick some up. I dashed in picked up a bottle of milk and it was out to the car again. But …. It wouldn’t start!!!! After about 5 minutes of poking about underneath the bonnet, hubby called up AA who promised to be with us within the hour. One hour, sitting in a car waiting??? But you know what? It turned out to be lovely as we made a mini picnic of it – yes, in the car!! It’s amazing what some bananas, a box of ice cream and some juice can do. And my daughter just loved it. And so did I. We eventually got rescued, car was fixed in 20 minutes (the earth cable was loose) and we made our way back home. It was 9:00 pm. Way past my daughters’ bedtime. Needless to say, she was more than happy to jump into the bath, then her pajamas and into bed.

Simple pleasures can bring such joy.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

A State of Graze

I’ve started grazing again. I tend to do this when I am unsettled and not in sync with life. I graze in various aspects in my life. I graze food – eating unhealthily, having too much sugar, eating too late and so forth. I graze books – flirting from one book to another, reading a page here, a page there, but never completing any, moving from one book to the next. I graze the internet – not looking for anything in particular but still remaining glued to my PC. I graze my daily routine – jumping from one task to another mindlessly, engaging in something only to drop it twenty minutes later, and generally just unravelling.

When I am in my grazing state it’s a sign that I am dissatisfied and deeply unfulfilled by the status quo. It’s a subtle (and sometimes not so subtle) sign that it’s time for me to move onto another level. I have lots of talents which I am letting go to waste and it’s such a shame. I am in a job that although I do it well and it is relatively stress free, plays no part in getting me to where I want to be, it is not a springboard to any greater achievement. I would much rather be doing something more creative – writing, sewing, drawing, making jewellery, scrapbooking, journaling. These are things which make me come alive. At this point in life I am thinking more pleasure than money. If money becomes a by product of putting my talents to work then all the better. Isn’t that what we all want? Doing something that gives us great pleasure yet managing to make a good living out of it?

Am hoping my grazing mood lifts soon and I am able to focus once again and start moving in the direction I need to be going.

By the way, any more takers for the project I proposed below? C’mon people, let your hair down and have some fun!

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Letters to My Younger Self


times I look back at my life and wish I had known then many of the things I know now so when I came across this idea in the April edition of the O Magazine, it really struck a chord with me and thought I would share it with everyone and turn it into a mini-project. It’s called

Letters to My Younger Self.

If you could write a note of advice to the girl or boy you were back then, with all the benefits of wisdom and experience you have now…what would you say?

...letters to my younger SELF

So if you are a regular reader or have just stumbled upon this blog, please do join in. I am hoping that a week will give everyone enough time to write a letter to their younger selves and then post them on their blogs on the 18th of April (exactly a week from today).

If you are interested in being a part of this then please leave a comment with a link to your blog so I, and all participants, can check out your letter on the 18th. Have fun!

PS: All letters should begin with 'Dear Younger Self'

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Shopping Formula

ere's a great formula for calculating whether to splurge on an item of clothing. It goes like this:

1. For every time you wear the item of clothing, you earn a dollar.

2. For every compliment you get on it, you earn three dollars.

3. If the item of clothing is likely to earn its cost back, buy it. If not, keep looking.

Handy tool to remember when the sale season rolls in!

From Jill's Notebook.

Mission: Get Organised

...mission?...get organisedWRITE thingsdown...

I am on a mission – to get more organised and get things moving in my life. As my hubby will put it – moving on to another level (preferably a higher one, of course!). I have so much I want to do and so little time and yet I faff about wasting time doing things that add no value, and have absolutely no impact in propelling me towards my number one dream goal – Starting up my own business.

I wrote my business plan months ago, attended a 10 week flash course on how to go about setting one up, even went as far as getting business cards printed, a domain name registered and labels woven and yet almost a year on, I have remained on the spot. What happened you ask? I lost focus and motivation – plus a little bit of fear mixed in (one gets used to that paycheck coming in at the end of the month). The losing focus bit was just letting my time be eaten up and side tracked itty bitty stuff that in hindsight were REALLY QUITE UNPRODUCTIVE. Losing motivation was just a spin off of this. But I am determined to change this and my first strategy is to get a little more organised.  

I want to get into the habit of writing down things – and I mean everything. Every year, I splurge out on expensive refills for my filofax (I am definitely a paper girl, no handheld’s for me. I love to see stuff written down in black and white) and when I flick though it 12 months later, there are huge gaps in it which are completely blank – pages and pages of blank space.  Such a waste of my hard earned money!

Too often stuff pops into my head only for me to forget it an hour later. why? Because I didn’t bother to write it down. So from today (she says) I am going to get into the habit of putting things down on paper. A tried and tested way of making things stick in your subconscious. And it’s not only the writing things down, it’s also the acting upon the stuff you write down. But one step at a time.

For those of you also on the quest of getting more organized and on top of things, have a read of this.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

The Great Outdoors

... I am so gladthat springseems to have sprung!

The weekend was good and went by very quickly because I was so busy working on my new blog and making up my list for the 1001 project that I stumbled on. It’s been a real eye opener, making me dig deep and sometimes being surprised by some of the tasks I set for myself, but it’s going to be fun to do and I am really looking forward to the next 1001 days.

For the first time in a long, long time I went for a walk yesterday. I was so fed up with being cooped up in the house – daughter in front of TV, hubby in front of PC and me well, getting more and more irritable. So at 4 p.m I announced that we were ALL going out for a walk ( I wasn’t taking no for an answer), bundled all and sundry into their jumpers and vests and we set off.

Now behind our house, literally just a stones throw away, is a hidden treasure – Countryside. You walk round the corner from our house, go through a set of heavy wooden gates and you are bang in the middle of the country side complete with running stream, little bridge and all. It comes as such a surprise to the first time adventurer because your heads telling you ‘Hey I’m in the middle of the City’ and your eyes are telling you ‘Hey, I’m in the middle of the countryside’ . It is absolutely fantastic. The air is fresh, the fields are huge and the horses wander around behind their wooden fences (paddocks?), coming up close for a little nuzzle or lump of sugar once they spot any human. My daughter was in heaven and quite truthfully so was I. Just the vastness of the space and rural-ness (my word) of it all is so liberating. I can’t explain it. By the time we got back home about two hours later, our shoes caked with mud, we all had smiles on our faces. And for the first time in ages, my daughter actually asked to be taken to bed – she was that worn out from all the running around in the fresh, crisp air.

This is what I miss the most about Nigeria – no, not the fresh, crisp air – but the freedom and space the kids have to run around in. When we visited Nigeria last year, my daughter spent every waking hour running around and playing outside in the huge garden with her cousins. By seven O’clock she was so pooped all she wanted to do was go straight to bed.
It’s different in the UK. The houses are pretty small and after a whole day indoors the walls start to cave in on you and there is little or no garden to speak of, so one has to rely on taking the kids to the park if they are to get any sort of outdoor life. Now this activity is ruled out for at least six months of the year, when the cold and wet weather descends. I really breaks my heart sometimes when I watch my daughter peering outside longingly, and I remember how I was always outside back home when I was a kid. Here, it’s the TV or the PC or some other indoor activity.

That’s why I am so glad that spring seems to have sprung and the sun is making a bit more of an effort to spread some warmth. This summer, I am going to live at the park with my daughter and give her as much outdoor life as I can!

Monday, April 03, 2006

April and a new Pet Project projects todo lists and setting goals...HELLO april

So, March has come and gone and once again I have missed achieving the three goals I set for myself. However, I shall not despair because spring is in the air and the sun is blazing (but not producing the equivalent type of heat one would expect from the intensity of the rays it’s emitting) and the sky is an unbelievable shade of blue, plus I have discovered the perfect project which marries my two penchants well – for making to-do lists, and setting goals.

This led me to spend a good part of the week-end setting up a new blog specifically for my new pet project - an activity that proved to be very worthwhile indeed. I have learned how to set up collapsible sidebars, do all sorts of funky things with the blogger template to suit my specs, and solicited ( and got) tekkie help from a fellow blogger I stumbled upon in the blogosphere. (It’s wonderful how strangers are very willing to help you on the WWW. It’s like the anonymity frees us all from our inhibitions). So all I have to do now is get my 101 list made up, post it on my blog and I am ready to rock and roll, as they say.

I am therefore, not going set up any goals specifically geared towards being achieved in April, as the 101 project will cover all that and gives me a bit of breathing room to achieve all the goals on my master list. I am really looking forward to crossing them off one by one.

April, I embrace you with open arms and an optimistic attitude!

PS: Isn't it just amazing how fast the year is rushing by