Tuesday, 31 December 2013

My 13 Favorite Things from 2013


Banky W "R&BW" Album - To be precise I loved the Yes/No track, everyone in my house did. We over rocked this track. 


Body Shop Body Mist: I love sweet, mild, calming and close-to-nature fragrances. I have been using the body shop body mists for two years now and I will keep stocking up on them whenever I get the chance. The Mango and Shea mist is definitely my favourite.

Kinky-Curly Knot Today Natural Leave In / Detangler: Its super light and non-greasy. The Ingredients in this product is minimal, not full of junks you wouldn't understand.

Source
My Digby Metal Frame Boxy Handbag by Dunes London: This bag is so functional and classy/classic. When I first set my eyes on this bag I knew I had to have it. 

 St. Ives Body Lotions: Usually I use oils and butters but since I started using the St. Ives Body Lotions I find myself pushing my butters and oils farther away from me. The great thing about this lotion is that contains no parabens, no phthalates, not animal ingredients. They are hypoallergenic (i.e. they contain  ingredients that cause fewer allergic reactions versus/when compared to the average lotions in the market), fast absorbing and non-greasy.

JVC Gumy Headphones: Not only are they super cheap (about £6), they are durable and the sound is good and very clear. Of course, no fancy bass or techno thingzzz but it does the job well. I have had mine for over a year now and considering the fact that I handle it roughly, it still works perfectly well.
Wafers like no any other, I will love to introduce Loacker's Classic Wafers. The vanilla is the best of the four flavours I have tried. I can take down more than 15 of this in a day. Yeah, that is how much I love them. It virtually melts in my mouth. Only writing about it now makes me want it.

If you havent seen my post on Unripe Plantain Fufu, then now is the time to have a look. Because I can't go a week without having this dish.
Social Media: YouTube, Instagram and Twitter kept me interested and updated this year. I fell in love with Bloglovin and so many blogs I can't begin to mention
                                                                      
I joined the Mac Ruby Woo bandwagon (*sigh* I thought I had over-grown for social pressure but nah nah). I don't regret it.




Zenith Bank MasterCard, the fact that my bank just one a MasterCard when you open any type of account that can be used anywhere in the world is bliss. It made traveling so much easier, hassle free and cheaper (because you exchange at bank rate and not black market rate) for me. #teamzenithbank #justbecause


The way Beyonce dropped her Beyoncé album.... I was like



I love this year's New Year Eve because I know it is far better than the previous year. I am more grateful this year for so many amazing things that have happened to me.



So that is it for 2013.
HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE
XOXO





Tuesday, 24 December 2013

Friday, 22 November 2013

Dreams

When all seem lost and we feel there is nothing left for us to do, We should never forget the power of being able to dream. YES! I believe dreams come true. The great thing about dreaming is that no one in your dream will have negative or discouraging words to say. 

Dreams are personal and must be treasured. Dreams are what makes the impossible, possible. Dreams are what make many jump out of bed every morning. Dreams give us reasons to strive on and live. 

I believe one stops living when one stops dreaming. So don't stop dreaming. This song by the Everly Brothers remain me of my dreams. I thought I should share. I use to love this song as a child, it use to make me happy. As an adult it inspires me. I think the song was talking about a girl but I interpreted it differently as my goals and aspirations in life. Although I don't intend dreaming my life away. 



Hope you all enjoy it as I do.


Tuesday, 5 November 2013

25 Reasons to be Grateful

I was contemplating on whether I should do this post but after much going back and forth I decided to give it a go. Here are 25 reasons in my life to be grateful to God.

  1. For His love - God's Love
  2. For Hope to carry on each day
  3. For Health
  4. For the Love of family and friends
  5. For Happiness and Joy - Considering the fact that about 2 years ago I was in a dark place.
  6. For helping me beat all the odds against me in life (Between God and I)
  7. For Daily Wisdom
  8. For comfort
  9. For Wealth
  10. For an Intellectual mind
  11. For Doors of opportunities that keeps coming up despite my ingrate attitude towards them.
  12. For Academic achievements
  13. For the giving me to strength and will to be a blessing to others
  14. For Daily purpose and direction - When loss a sense of purpose and direction, God always has a way to put me back on track.
  15. For growth
  16. For the business that has been entrusted to me
  17. For Abundance of blessing - I feel blessed each day and I know I will have a blessed live. I know God was referring to me when he said in 3 John 1:2, "Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth."
  18. For adventures - I have gone and seen places I never thought or imagined possible.
  19. For constant innovation
  20. For bringing helpers my way
  21. For Beauty 
  22. For all my material possessions
  23. For my room - (No one can imagine how much I love my room)
  24. For my blog - cluelessrandoms.blogspot.com
  25. For 25 years of ups, downs, failures, success, trials & errors, breakthroughs, forgiveness, mercy, peace and for much more things to come.

I thought looking for 25 reasons will be a tough one for me to do but when I started thinking and listing them, I realized 25 was just so small. I could go on and on. Thanks to everyone that reads this blog. Try not to be like me and wait for a day like this to count your blessing. Try to count your blessings daily, as I intend doing from henceforth. 

Happy Birthday to Me

Saturday, 19 October 2013

DIY Unripe Plantain Swallow (Plantain Amala) - From scratch under 20 mins



Unripe Plantain Swallow is also known as Plantain Amala or Plantain Fufu. I am accustomed to the old method of buying dried unripe plantains from my local market, grinding them to fine powder and cooking/turning it into a solid paste that looks like this picture below. The drying process of unripe plantains makes it look like (colour wise) the picture below.

Source: Wikipedia

Unripe plantain swallow is my favourite Nigeria swallow but to be frank it has one of the most unattractive food colour ever. 

However, with this method, colour is no longer a turn off. I am very new to this method of making unripe plantain swallow. My dad and mum told me to try it out (They weren't sure it will turn out great) and I gave it a go. 

Tools needed:
- Blender
- Turning Stick
- Knife
- Pot
- Packer/Large Serving Spoon
- 1/4 cup of boiled water


Turner. Packer, Knife and Blender

Ingredients:
- 3 unripe medium size plantains
- 3/4 cup of water


Serves: 2 (two) medium-hungry people
Total Time: 20 mins for fast cooks / 35 mins for beginners

How To Prepare

- Peel plantain bark off


My mum doing the work of peeling the bark off and chopping
- Chop peeled plantain into smaller pieces for easier blending


I put the chopped plantain in water while peeling the rest to allow it retain it's moisture and prevent it from getting discoloured

- Add the 2/3 cup of water and blend the plantain until it becomes a smooth puree


- Pour the plantain  puree into a pot and set on medium heat/fire to boil
Puree-like texture
- When the plantain puree begins to boil, take you turning stick and begin to turn carefully
Note: Take necessary breaks if needed when turning. Puree might appear lumpy when turning but don't worry about it. Continuous turning and mashing will eliminate the lumps eventually.


The lumps I mentioned that will eventually smoothen

- Turn until you achieve the smooth swallow/solid-like texture you desire


Turn till I get a solid paste
- Add 1/4 cup of boiled hot water and cover to steam for about 2-3 minutes
- Turn again 
- Food is ready to be served with soup of choice. 


Unripe Plantain Swallow with Fresh Vegetable Soup 


I prefer this method because
- It is a DIY that doesn't require a lot of processing/time to get your unripe plantain to your end result
- It tastes fresh and good
- It has a nice colour
- It doesn't pass through many unknown handlers, hands and markets

I haven't tried it with ripe plantain yet. This is because I think the sugar content will be high and the starch content will be lower, so it might not hold well but I might be wrong Although anyone can try it and tell me how it turned out.

Saturday, 5 October 2013

Taking a Break from Norms

A new era of my life has just arrived. This era involves me taking a break from my normal thought patterns and ''absorptions''. While I will still remain true to my fundamental beliefs and values, I need to appraise my priorities and needs, and determine new ways that will work out better for me in achieving my life-time purpose on this planet earth. 

Not intending to sound very Mother-Theresa-meets-Margaret-Thatcher-ish, this post is about taking a break from my normal vibrantly colourful nail polishes to a very neutral one. 

So here is my nail polish of the week 





Nail Polish 
L.A. Colors Base Coat 
L.A. Colors Nail lacquer  

Yes!!! This post is a very selfie one. The amazing things about these L.A. Color nail polishes are that they went for 99p (approximately N250) in a beautybase store and they dry super fast. So I got myself about 10 different colours.

Friday, 4 October 2013

The Adult I Wanted To Be

Source

As a child, I always wondered what type of adult I will be. I use to observe every aunt and adult females around me. I look for traits in them that I wanted to possess when I grow up.

I wondered if I was going to be the sister that goes to church with the big box-like net hat; or the aunt that is an embarrassment to the family; or the stylish aunt that has lots of pretty and stylish friends that all went to the best parties in town.

I wondered if I was going to be the man-eater and gold-diggers kind of sister; or the most intelligent that bagged so many degrees, successful achievements and trophies;

I wondered if I was going to be the “indifferent aunt” that felt satisfied with just being a “house-woman”, with no interesting life exposure, no enthusiasm to achieve anything great with her life. 
Just a living plain old boring life is perfect for her.

Even as an adult I don’t know what aunt/sister I turned out to be. However, I wonder what the younger ones see when they look at me.

Tuesday, 1 October 2013

HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY NIGERIANS


Freedom hand - Nigeria Flag

53 years of freedom is not beans oh… So we all know we had a tough and a good start to freedom (early 1960s). Then it got a bit tough and doubtful (military era), we miraculously got our footing back on the ground and kept pushing on (the 1980s and after Abacha’s death). We threatened each other to split up (Biafra war and even the recent boko-haram).  We are even sometimes tribalist to one another (inter-tribal marriage). Of course poverty rate, electricity supply, stable transportation system/channel, enforcement/judiciary system etc. is not what we hoped it will be. Many of our people’s minds are still a bit backward thinking. But the long and short of this independence matter is that we are here at 53, no going back to change things. Looking at all that is wrong with Nigeria has not helped the country anyway; I guess we should all take a different approach by looking at what we can put into Nigeria. Complaining about our leaders will not change them but if everyone plays their part first as responsible human beings, then as good citizens, the country will finally get on the pathway of betterment. Arise O’ Compatriot #AriseOcompatriots

Thursday, 12 September 2013

Why Can’t I Just Sleep In!!!!!?????

I crave for mornings that I can just lay-in back in bed and do nothing but relax throughout the morning. Be able to just lay in bed, read a book, drink a nice cup of warm chocolate tea and doze off every minute or so.

Sigh…. Those mornings only happen in my dreams. An attempt at it will warrant a lecture on what it means to be a great daughter, a great woman and eventually a great wife and mother. I will get reasons why an African woman cannot afford to be lazy and lay in. I will get a sermon on the pathway of failure. I will get a rundown of the list of people that I am responsible for.

If I just by any chance give in to my instinctive pigheadedness and sleep in, I will combat a whole day of the silent treatment and a constant future reminder of my lazy actions. And NO, all the other 364 days of waking up on time to perform my morning duties will not count again because that 1 day sleep in will trump the previous 364 days.

Honestly, I don't see a sleep in day coming anytime soon because I am not up for the saga that comes with it.

Friday, 6 September 2013

Aloe Vera Gel - One Man's Poison is Another Man's Cure

I have beautiful aloe vera plants at home which has grown so well because I take very good care of them. I didn't nurture these plants because of my love for the plants. I nurtured them because of my love for my hair and its growth. I have read and heard about the amazing benefits of the aloe vera plant for the hair and skin. So knowing that my mum had so many pots of dying aloe vera plants that she couldn't be bothered with, I decided to nurture most of them back to good health. 

The thing now is after nurturing my plants to great health, I can't bring myself to actually use them. I don't know if it's just sheer laziness on my part to get the aloe vera gel out of its green shell or my unsuspecting gradual attachment to the plants. Whatever it may be, I just can't bring myself to get some useful 'gel-ness' for my hair.


Allowing my aloe vera plant to continue to blossom, I decided to get two tubes (200ml each) of Holland & Barrett Aloe Vera Gel (99.9% soothing hand filleted organic aloe vera gel content). What the hell, 99.9% in my books means 100%.



FOR MY HAIR
I have very low hair porosity, water takes a very long time to penetrate and products normally just sit on my hair. It takes quite a while for products to sink in. I tried the aloe vera gel in so many ways to see which result will work the best. 

Note: My hair is still in one of the TWA stages (about 6.5 to 7 inch hair length when stretched)

1st way - On my wash day (after shampooing and conditioning), I used the Cantu Shea-butter leave-in cream (never works well with any gel on my hair), followed by the aloe vera gel (like a tablespoon full). It resulted in lots of residues and white junks, so I had to rinse everything off my hair. (EPIC FAIL)

2nd way - On my wash day (after shampooing and conditioning), I used my Aussie Moist Miracle Insurance leave-in spray, followed by aloe vera gel (like a tablespoon full) and then a few drops of oil. It was alright, it sank well into my hair. However by midday, my hair felt very dry. (FAIL)

3rd way - After co-washing, I properly moisturized with my two leave-in (cantu and aussie) and sealed with oil (usually this is all I need for three days) then when the products had properly sunk in, I used the aloe vera gel (like a tablespoon full) on top. The overall feel was great but midday, my hair felt very dry. I had to constantly re-moisturize. (FAIL)

4th way - In between the week, on a 2nd to 3rd day wash n go, I spray my hair with water and used the aloe vera gel (like a tablespoon full). Again, The overall feel was great but by midday my hair felt very dry. I had to constantly re-moisturize. (FAIL)

5th way - GIVE UP. Patience and all ain't one of my many strengths.

I was kind of pissed that it wasn't working for me and I really wanted it to work. Even though I read on the lowporosityhaircare blog that aloe vera gel is a frenemy to my kind of hair, I am also a believer of what works for you might not work for me. But in this case, I have to admit that she was right. However, she gave other great recommendations on how to make make aloe vera gel work for low porosity hair but my hair care regimen is not channeled in that direction. It is a pass for me.

While I was still thinking of what to do with my tubes of aloe vera gel, I was mildly breaking out on my face. So on one random night just before bed, I decided to actually read what was on the tube and apply the gel on my face as a moisturizer. It was so amazing.

FOR MY FACE
It gives my oily face a well-balanced moisture. It helps keep my make-up and face so matte, It is a great primer I must confess. It mixes well with oils, so I use it with my jojoba oil at night. It is very soothing on the face and neck. I used it on insect bites too and it helps soothe them for me. 

I feel like it's a win win for me now. So it didn't work well for my hair but it works great for my face, make-up and skin.



Sunday, 18 August 2013

Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) and My Business


A clean and healthy business (vagina) should be almost free of that fishy-odor (excluding those odd times you cannot help). While it is normal for the business to have a natural body smell, achieving a stink-free business is not always as easy as ABC. To a large extent, many factors that we sometimes are not aware of can contribute to that fishy or annoying smell that ladies dread. Some of the factors I have come to realize over the years that make the business stink are;

Diet – You are what you eat. Nasty or junk foods produce nasty and junk results. Proper and healthy food choices will go a long way to helping you reduce a fishy business. An over-all balance as to what you eat should be a priority, recommended foods for a rosier smelling business are pineapples, apples, yogurts, watermelons, grapes (red), mints and lots of water.

Soaps / Washes / Douches – I can personally attest to this factor. A consistent use of fragrant soaps and washes over the years left me with a yeast infection. Yeast infection occurs when there is a disruption of the healthy balance of natural yeast and bacteria in the vagina. An imbalance causes an overgrowth of yeast and too much yeast leads to itching, burning, soreness, discharges and others. After I treated this infection, I thought using a commercial sold douche will be better but it only made things just as bad. I had to swap to plain old water only. Although, I have read in a couple of places that mild or soap-free soaps and washes are better, I will advise that we just stay clear of them all. These include powders, feminine sprays or any sprays, perfumes, deodorant tampons, fragrant pads and fragrant party-liners.

Tight Clothing – Living in a hot and humid climate region of the world, I know for a fact that wearing skinny jeans for long hours on an active day leaves my business very moist, sweaty and yucky. I always advise ladies to take some days off the tight clothing on the bottom and opt for freer clothing down. Also, going to bed bare (i.e. no underwear) is great ways to allow your business to breathe well at night.

Other Health Problems – Such as diabetes, Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs), Pelvic Inflammatory Disease, Cancer of the cervix or vagina, Vaginitis and many others. Hmm… all I can say is for you to check with your doctor for more advice.

There are other factors I haven’t mentioned in this post as this post has more to offer. Just keep reading

For over six years now, I have always known vinegar was good for washing the business. I didn't know how ‘very good’ it was until I gave it a try last month. After about two weeks of using it as a douche, I am so pissed with myself for haven’t tried it all these years.

This is how I use ACV to handle my business.
The things required are

  • 1 liter water
  • 4 tablespoon of Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV)
  • Bath Bowl

I use the Heinz brand for my business because Bragg's price is on the higher side. I drink the Bragg's brand every now and then.

I use this every two days during my evening bath time. I use plain old water in the morning and other evening.

What Have I Observed?
My business feels so far clearer than I ever thought possible. I have close to no odor at all these past weeks. I am so pleased with the result that I am tempted to wear my panties a second time because it is so clean and odor-free.

I haven’t tried the white vinegar or red vinegar but I intend to give them a try when I run out of ACV to see if I get the same results.

The benefits of using ACV for your business

  • Keeps the vagina clean and stink-free
  • Continual use can cure yeast infections
  • Balances the PH of the vagina
  • It does not drain your pocket (any vinegar should be fine). No one needs to break the bank for an expensive vinegar. 

Sunday, 11 August 2013

Balanced Diet VS Dieting


It baffles me when a balanced diet keeps being mistaken for dieting. When I was in primary school, I was taught all the classification of food, what a balanced diet meant and why we should have a bit of everything.  Now every magazine and newspaper I flip is always stating how a celebrity got their body through dieting, reading closer I find that all they did was sticking to a balanced diet (in most cases, exempting those other or ridiculous extreme diet plans). This makes me question people’s view of dieting. You are either on a balanced/good diet or an unbalanced/bad diet. A balanced diet is not dieting, it’s just eating right, and the way Mother Nature created you to eat. Also, not over-indulging or over-eating shouldn't be mistaken for dieting. 

At parties or gatherings (in Naija especially), I find it irritating when I turn down food I am offered food again after just being done with one and I hear ''She is dieting''. Thanks for the food offer again, I appreciate your act of kindness but No!! I am not dieting, it's just common sense to not eat more than your body needs. If you have a balanced dieted, you will not need to start dieting. I can’t over-emphasize the fact that a healthy diet should be a way of life and not a trend. Everything in life needs moderation and balance to properly work, eating is no exception. Eat well,  Drink lots of water, Keep moving, Get busy, Sleep well, Love well, Laugh well and Give. 

Friday, 9 August 2013

Homemade Black Tea Hair Spray



After big chopping (BC) my hair, the first couple of months that followed, I experienced little to no shedding/breakage. In fact, not intending to exaggerate, I comb and manipulate my hair a lot and still have no hair loss at all. I never understood why many naturals complained of shedding and breakage. I automatically assumed that I was blessed with hair genes that didn't allow for shedding and breakage. 

Fast forward six month later, I am on the Internet surfing for ways to reduce hair shedding. It is not problematically bad but it is enough to get one of my eye raised up. In the first three months of my natural hair journey, I always incorporated green or black tea into my wash day hair regime, although then I didn't really know its uses. I just did it because the naturals of the blogs I read did it. I stopped doing it because I wanted to try other things and later reduce the must-dos on my wash day regime. 

When I read the amazing benefits of black and green tea here, I decided to use the black tea spray to reduce my shedding rate without increasing my time spent on wash days. I prefer black tea because I like the stain it will leave on my hair. I am a sucker of jet or dark black hair.

What I Use
- A spray bottle
- A bag of black tea
- 50 ml boiled water
- Essential oil of your choice (I use about four drops of rosemary essential oil)



I brew my black tea in 50 ml of water for about 10 minutes. I prefer it concentrated since I am not spraying my hair wet or damp. I can use this mixture for about four to five days but I use it for only three days. I use essential oils to preserve it and still put it in the fridge everyday (just to make sure bacteria doesn't take it cause). There are various ways in which I spray my black tea mix. 

Method 1 - On the first day of making it, I put the very warm tea in my spray bottle and add about four drops of my rosemary essential oil. I spray this warm mixture on my dry 2nd, 3rd, 4th or 5th day wash and go hair depending on the day I make it. Note that: I don't use this on my wash or co-wash day. I mist my hair every other day to fluff n go and/or to give it moisture before I seal with my oil, cream or butter of my choice.

Method 2 - On the second day of using the already cool mixture. I first use a cream or moisturizer of choice before I take a shower and allow the steam to open my hair cuticle. Then I spray my cold black tea to close it up. 

Method 3 - For all the black or green tea drinkers out there. Ignore all I have said above. Whenever you make yourself a great cup of tea, take three teaspoons or more and put in your spray bottle. Spray your hair with it and seal with oil or cream of choice. This is by far the easiest method if you are into drinking tea every now and then.

What I Noticed After A Month
- My shedding has significantly reduced. I am not declaring that it has stopped by a 100% but it has reduced enough for me to get a good night's rest, knowing I am doing everything right to reduce shedding.

- My hair feels stronger. Maybe strengthen is the right word. I am not really sure why it feels that way but it does. Just make sure you seal or use a moisture every time or every other time you use the spray.

- It also feels just a bit softer. This might be as a result of the stiffness I heard black tea makes the hair, so I always endeavor to properly seal it with moisturizing creams or oils. 

- I get to moisturize my hair with water instead a leave-in or mist spray.

- It can act as a refresher on those odd days that the hair needs it.

How Often Should it be Applied
I am a freelance hair person and do whatever I so please but considering the fact that I have read that an overdose of caffeine on the hair can cause stunted growth, I will recommend about three to four times a week.

Am I the only wacko one or has anyone else given this tea hair spray thing a try?


Tuesday, 30 July 2013

Put Down your Neck!!!

I have heard this sentence more than a 10,000 times from my mother but it just never sinks in. It is a habit I started since I learned how to walk. My mum thinks it disfigure my beautiful posture when walking and standing. I rise my head very high in the air, maybe because I feel I am suppose to be taller than my present height or maybe I see things from a different horizontal point of view. Which ever the case, it's a habit that I haven't put in mind to stop until today. 


Friday, 21 June 2013

My Brief History with Natural Oils and Butters

I mentioned doing a post on natural body butters and the possibility of making the skin darker in a previous post. This is coming about abut three months later because I have been experimenting more on these butters and trying to observe its effects on my skin.

****Please Note: I don't use any of the mentioned oils or butters on my face. They are strictly for my body only. I will do a post soon on my recommended facial oils.****



I used extra virgin olive oil for about three months during the autumn/winter in the United Kingdom. It was alright; I found it a bit heavy though because the weather made the oil have a thicker consistency. I am a bit heavy handed, so I tend to take more than required and end up having greasy skin (although I don’t mind that because I love the oily glow look). However, I didn't like the fact that it didn't absorb well into my skin, It felt like it was always sitting on top. So, I got bored of using it and switched to grapeseed oil. Olive oil didn't change my skin tone.



Grapeseed oil is alright, it was perfect for the UK winter weather for me. It absorbed perfectly, it was very light and still gave me a good glow. My skin tone remained the same. I will rate it a good 9/10. I stopped using it when I moved back to my country and found the organic/pure grade of this oil, not easily accessible.



Coconut oil is another miraculous oil to try. Its smell, light weight nature, easy spread-ability and absorb-ability on the skin, gives this oil a great advantage. In colder climates, coconut oil tends to solidify and look like a heavy butter but in hotter climates (like where I reside) it is very runny and liquid. My only drawback with this wonder oil is that I don’t find it enough for my skin. By midday, my skin doesn't feel moisturized enough. My skin is accustomed to heavier moisture creams/sealants, so I am guessing its finding coconut oil not sufficient.



Shea Butter, my first and last love, I am always back and forth with this butter. When I am in between oils and creams or when other oils and creams fail to meet my skin’s need, Shea butter has remained true to me. I am the disloyal one in this relationship. Full of amazing properties like sun-blocking (provides natural ultraviolet sun protection up to about SPF 6), hydrating, improves skin elasticity, mildly prevents stretch-marks and contains amazing Vitamin E and A. It gives me a very healthy glow and my skin always feels succulent. I make it into an amazing whipped cream, for easy spread-ability and add other light oils to it. So far so good, it hasn't made my skin darker. Although, I will recommend getting the purest/raw Shea butter because in the past, adulterated ones have not only made me darker but gave me rashes and other allergies.



Cocoa Butter, the other love. I have fallen so much in love with cocoa butter that I have been forced to let it co-habit with my Shea Butter. In fact to be honest, for every 20g of cocoa butter I use, I use 5g of Shea butter. I haven’t found a soul that can resist the yummiest of this butter. Its chocolaty smell doesn't help either. Cocoa butter is great for stretch mark prevention and treatment. It is also recommended for the treatment of skin conditions like eczema and dermatitis. It helps retain the needed moisture to the skin. Its usage will be a long run staple for me. I will rate my cocoa butter whipped mix cream at 10/10. This is because of its yummy smell, moisturizing properties, easy absorbency and gives me a nice glow.

I also just got a free tub of Mango Butter; I can’t wait to try that very soon too.

Tuesday, 11 June 2013

You Think You can Trust Brands to Take Care of You. Well Think Again


A friend forwarded an article on this website (unveiled wife) for me to read. I never pass an opportunity to read new blogs/articles websites that help improve on self, body, hair and living generally, so I was very excited to give it a read. Feeling very inspired by the article, I opened the authors bio on the blog. Her story was so moving that I just had to re-post it on my blog. 

I quote a portion of Jennifer Smith's (unveiled wife) full story;

''Despite the doctors telling me I am as healthy as can be, pain seized my body during almost every sexual encounter. I began avoiding intimacy with my husband and eventually he stopped pursuing me, injured by the blow of my rejections. There were a handful of times over the course of 4 years that sex didn't hurt as bad, but it was definitely far less than satisfying. 

During the first few years of marriage I didn't want to talk about my issue too much with others. I had insecurities welling up inside that I was an inadequate wife, unable to please my husband. I convinced myself that others would judge me negatively..... 

I was threatened by the thought of my marriage coming to an end. 
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The biggest breakthrough my husband and I experienced happened in November of 2010. We firmly believe that God heard our cries to experience a fulfilling marriage and He responded in a miraculous way. He brought my husband’s attention to a facial cleanser product that I had been applying daily for nearly 8 years.  After researching the ingredients in my face wash, we discovered that there were a handful of harmful chemicals in the product, including parabens. I immediately stopped using anything and everything that contained parabens and within 3 days I noticed a difference. Within a week, my husband and I experienced an easier time during intercourse and within a month we were able to enjoy sex, pain free!''


One wonders how something as little as a facial cleanser that one has trusted for over 8 years can cause such a huge problem in one's life. I will always advocate that it is our responsibility to research and know what we put on and into our bodies. It might seem little and insignificant now but one can't really say when and where these little and insignificant things can pop their head.

Friday, 24 May 2013

Stunner Image of the week - 17/05/2013




haven't done a stunner image for a while but here goes one now. I downloaded this picture from a Facebook page and I cant stop staring at it.

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

RAndom RAnt 1: Experimental Cooking


Source: thekitchn.com

I find normal cooking to be a good thing and something I like doing. What I find even more fantastic is experimental cooking. Experimental cooking is when you cook outside the norms and rules laid down by ancient unknown/invisible forces. I usually wonder why water should be boiled to 100 degrees Celsius before adding the rice, when I can put both at the same time or anytime and still get the same result. I have never understood some set rules in cookery when they all achieve the same results when done otherwise. I love challenging the normal and usual in cooking. I believe that is what makes a confident cook. This is applicable in all areas of life.


When I was in my late teenage years, my mum and aunts were always on my case about my inability to properly cook and make soups. This totally puts me off cooking and I always got apprehensive about cooking. My mum had this define rules/norms she followed. All her sisters and relatives followed these same  norms/rules to cooking. She tired teaching me too but I was finding some unnecessary and challenged others. 
I also had an older family friend who tried to teach me how to cook. She had totally different norms/rules to what my mum does. She obviously thought hers’ was the right one and my mum thought the same about her  own too. They both gave me HUGE headaches when I was trying to decide on which to abide by.

When I moved into my own place and stopped eating out, I started cooking. However, I didn't really start enjoying cooking until I challenged the norms, doing my own twists and coming up with my own recipes. I use lime/lemon to cook every type of chicken, I don’t fry my tomato paste with oil and the list goes on and on. I have made lots of mistakes, try and errors but also learned a whole lot of things. When I now think back, I feel both my mum and family friend was both right, they just had styles that they stuck to when cooking.

I have gotten very interested in other cultures’ spices and food. I don’t believe there is a wrong way of cooking, I just believe everyone has their own way and should sometimes push and break boundaries, try things differently.

“Begin challenging your own assumptions. Your assumptions are your windows on the world. Scrub them off every once in a while, or the light won't come in.” - Alan Alda


What cooking rules/norms do you follow? Have you challenged it?

Monday, 13 May 2013

My Cough/Catarrh Remedy

Dealing with cough and catarrh can be very annoying, especially when the weather is sunny and hot, like what I am experiencing now. The last thing you want to be drinking at times like these are hot drinks. However, cough/catarrh is usually the first sign for me to get back on track whenever I am slacking at eating a healthy diet.


At the first strike of cough/catarrh, I get out the following ingredients below;
  • 1 medium size ginger
  • 2 garlic cloves (optional)
  • 1 medium size lime or lemon
  • 1 tablespoon of organic/raw honey (I use raw 15+ manuka New Zealand honey)
  • 1 cup of water (250ml)






I always have these ingredients in my kitchen because I use them to cook every time. The use of garlic is optional because not everyone can stand the smell. In fact, I will not advise you to use it in this recipe if you have an important meeting or outing the following day because your breath might still stink of it. On a personal preference, I think garlic is the answer to so many illnesses and sickness. I think a bit of garlic every now and then keeps the doctor away but again, that is just me thinking.



Preparation (Easy)
I peel my ginger and garlic, chop them up and toss into a blender. I add a cup of water to it and blend it. I then put the blended mixture (water, ginger and garlic) in a pot and let to get warmed up. Now I don’t believe in letting my water get up to 100 degrees because I believe boiling of the blended mixture will reduce the properties of the ginger and garlic. I just allow it to get warm, not more than I can drink immediately (I usually should be able to put my finger in the water without screaming in pain). After the water is warm enough, I squeeze my lime or lemon and add my tablespoon of honey. Viola!!! Ready to drink.

Whenever I am plagued with cough/catarrh, I enjoy taking this at night just before I sleep and I wake up in the morning feeling relieved.

My rationale for the use of the above ingredients
Ginger is an herb that grows as a root. It is believed to help cure headaches, colds, fatigue, nausea, motion sickness, morning sickness, the flu, muscle soreness, menstrual pain, upper respiratory tract infections, and even diabetes. It can also act as a good pain and ache reliever. Ginger promotes energy circulation in the body while positively increasing the body's metabolic rate.

Garlic is another wonder herb, nicknamed 'stinking rose'. It has been used for years in the treatment of diseases and conditions. Garlic contains a chemical called allicin. This chemical makes garlic work for certain conditions. Allicin also makes garlic smell, not only does it cause bad breath, but it actually travels through your entire body and can come out of your pores. Garlic that loss this chemical is less effective. Garlic is a natural powerful antibiotic, antiviral and anti-fungal herb. There is strong evidence of garlic treating high blood pressure, hardening of the arteries (atherosclerosis), colon cancer, rectal cancer, and stomach cancer, tick bites and fungal infections. Although, there are not sufficient evidence on the relationship between garlic and the treatment of cold/cough/catarrh but preliminary research suggests garlic might reduce the frequency and number of colds when taken for prevention.

Lime/lemon contains vitamin C and a flavonoid called limonin glucoside. Limes are very good antibiotics, detoxifiers and great antioxidants. Limes cleanses bacteria and toxins from the body and aids in digestion. These properties in these citrus help halt the progress of cold/cough/catarrh.


Any raw and organic honey is great for the treatment of cold but Manuka honey is a different one of a kind. Manuka honey is produced in New Zealand by bees that pollinate the native Manuka bush. The major antibacterial component in Manuka honey is methylglyoxal (MG). MG is a compound found in most types of honey, but usually only in small quantities. Unique Manuka Factor (UMF) is a concentration of unique antioxidant phenols present in this type of honey that directly inhibits bacterial growth and promotes healing. Its antibiotic, anti-fungal, and antiviral properties makes it an effective remedy for sore throats, colds, acne, sinusitis, acid reflux and heartburn, ringworm, wounds, burns, and other skin problems.


Sources
The Healing Power of Garlic by Paul Bergner
Website: http://www.naturalnews.com
Website: http://www.webmd.com







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