Tag Archives: parenthood

I Hear Myself Everywhere

I consume a lot of stuff online or on television and I know that the stuff I like best is anything that I can read and feel in some ways that it represents my inner voice. Like what you ask?

  • Rory Gilmore from Gilmore Girls. In many ways she is my inner voice from when I was 16 until now at 32 – she is what the inner me wants to be.
  • Cup of Jo. This blog is what I wish that my own little corner of the internet would grow up to be.
  • Call your Girlfriend. This podcast reminds me of conversations I would have with my best gal pal and sans the cursing. As the tag line promises, it is the podcast for long distance besties which we happen to be.
  • Julia Braverman and her family because I REALLY loved the show Parenthood.
  • Tamar and Vince. Something about this show reminds me of the Mr and I . I also say that Tamar is the inner last born I always wish my family allowed me to be.
  • Randal and Beth Pearson from This is Us is another portrayal of how I think the Mr and I relate to each other. If ever there was a couple on TV that I would happily squeal #Relationshipgoals it would be them.

And you, who/ what represents that inner voice?

 

 

Belated Sunday Reads

We mentally compress our networks when we are harassed, bullied or being threatened by job loss. We close ourselves off, isolating ourselves, creating a huge blind spot where we can’t see our resources, allies and opportunities.

Guest Post: Things to do Before Baby Arrives

I read this article citing a few things that the author (a mom-to-be) wanted to do before the baby came and convinced a dear friend to write her own list. So with no further ado, please welcome Simple Girl blogging over at (Simple Girl Writes).

Three months ago I walked into the hospital and about 12 hours later was announced as a mother to a precious little girl. Yes, I said I was ‘announced as the mother’ as I only really felt like her mother two months later (but that’s a story for another day…). A friend asked me to compile a list of the things new mums should do before their bundle of joy arrives as you will most likely spend the first six/seven weeks in a haze where you won’t even remember your own name! Be warned, this is not the typical list outlining the very practical things to do (book the hospital bed, go to antenatal classes, take your vitamins etc.) – this list is for the mama that is worried about how much life will change post-baby. And trust me, life will change!

  1. Buy that dress that shows off your new curves and go dancing (or shuffle depending on how swollen the legs are)

I was lucky enough to have a fairly small bump for most of my pregnancy and up to 30 weeks pregnant, I could get away with saying I’ve just gained “a bit of weight” around the tummy. So imagine my horror when I had to go shopping for a dress to go to a wedding with a massive bump at 31 weeks.

Let me tell you, there’s nothing that makes you realise that you are pregnant (yes forget the previous 30 weeks of pregnancy symptoms!) like going shopping for a dress in a mall. Apart from the pity stares you get whenever you walk into a MANGO or ZARA and lovingly touch a dress that you used to fit into a couple of weeks ago. The real horror comes when you are shown the ‘maternity wear’ – long, flowy, pitiful looking dresses that are supposedly supposed to make you feel good about being a baby mama. I took one look at those dresses and almost burst into tears (let’s blame the hormones!).

To cut a long story short, I ended up finding something to wear in a store catering for the ‘plus-size’ lady Ya…I will reserve my comments but the dress was beautiful and I felt good enough in it to go out the next day and dance away.

Trust me, you need to do this – you will forget about the pitiful stares, swollen ankles, achy back and the closet full of clothes you can no longer wear. Most importantly, you will look back at the photos from the day and said dress with a massive grin.

img_6145

  1. Take photos of the growing bump!

I didn’t manage to get the professional maternity photo shoot (even though a good friend had offered to do it for me) but I did force the husband to take a lot of photos.  I won’t lie, I struggled with the body changes associated with pregnancy. Unlike other women, I didn’t marvel at the growing bump or liked my bump that much 😦 but take the pictures anyway! It’s worth remembering where the bundle was home for months and even funnier to look at post-baby to remind yourself how big you really were!

img_6144

  1. Go on a fun holiday with your closest girlfriends

This one I strongly recommend you do.

I am the first one to have a baby amongst my friends (the last one to get married though – judgment galore!) and they were more excited than I was about having a preggy belly in the circle. So when the chance came to have a last hooray as friends before life dramatically changed – we went on holiday to probably the most random place I’ve been to (Cinsta in the Eastern Cape). It literally was one of the best weekends I’ve had in a while. We stayed at a backpackers, ate way too much, overindulged on chocolate and biscuits (you know, all in the name of helping the pregnant lady with her cravings), went to a beautiful spa for overly-priced pedis and massages and just generally had a blast.

img_6147

  1. Babymoon!

Similar to the girlfriend hooray above, I strongly recommend going on a babymoon. The time to enjoy ‘the two of you’ for the last time. If you have the budget for it, planning a trip far away from home would be ideal.

We did a ‘Sho’t left’ to Umhlanga and spent almost every day at the beach with me stuffing myself with frozen yoghurt (I had a sweet tooth while pregnant!). But even without the vacation, just doing more stuff as a couple is important before baby arrives. I didn’t believe it when people told me but the relationship really changes after birth. In a good way overall but I do miss being able to plan a night out without calling every single relative we have living in close proximity to us, to check who is able to babysit for a while. Also, believe the mantra – happy parents make for a happy family so the time spent on the parents is never a waste.

img_6148

  1. Read those books/ go to gym/take the long showers/play Adele at the loudest volume setting – enjoy ME time!!

This is something that I’m struggling with every day post-baby. I miss having time to myself without any restraints.

A simple thing like going to spinning in the morning relies on either my husband being home or the nanny coming in to work on time so that I can leave my baby and go torture myself in the spinning studio. Playing music while cooking – hahaha – that is something I used to do but no longer can because really after putting baby down a couple of times, no one wants to wake her up when she is finally sleeping. And Lord, the day I can have a shower when I want to shower for as long as I want to shower will be the happiest days of my life. Right now, I either shower late at night when her dad gets home from work or put baby in the bouncer, move the bouncer into the bathroom and shower with the door partially open to make sure baby can hear/see me at all times so she doesn’t start screaming again. Sigh. The life of a new mum.

There’s no doubt that life changes a lot after baby arrives. I’m still dealing with the changes and clearly have no pearls of wisdom on how to survive them. What I can say is that the day your baby looks up at you and you get a toothless smile (filled with a lot of spit bubbles) is the day when you realise that it was all worth it – the changing body, constant worry, dealing with the never-ending mummy guilt and family judgment was all worth it as you will realise that you are the best mother that this baby has.

And so what if you get this smile while you haven’t brushed your teeth or had a shower? 🙂

img_6146

Thanks Simple Girl for sharing your journey frankly, I see so many guest posts that you hinted at in this post and will try and hold you to that!

Some of my (long) holiday reads ..

  1. If you are not a Longreads fan already, here is a list of their best articles of 2016.
  2. I am all about female friendships and stuff. I also love the authors idea of an article’s club.
  3. My friends and I have these kinds of conversations all the time. Why can’t I ever record them???
  4. Things people say after a miscarriage.
  5. Black Power!
  6. Kindness is the glue that holds couples together.
  7. What to choose when considering a Bible Study to join. We all need tips on how to improve our prayer life. Yep. At least me!!
  8. I guess con artistes are always looking to make a quick one so academia is also fair game.
  9. Short-run solutions to youth unemployment in South Africa. Can young offenders reform successfully?
  10. I love the aesthetics of this home!! This housing option seems quaint, but not for me.
  11. Helping kids to make New Year resolutions. Some help for adults too. More help from podcasts.
  12. Cool places to chill in Johannesburg. And in Uganda.
  13. On identity and what makes us, us. 
  14. I watched the movie Birth of a Nation and liked it.
  15. Recipes: Cooking with soy sauceFragrant Chickpea Basmati Rice with Fresh Coriander.

The Promises of God

Today is not an easy day, but I will choose to focus on the following truths about God:

  1. He is the Creator and Sustainor of Life. He made all things, visible and invisible for His pleasure.
  2. God is not a man that He should lie, nor a son of man that He will change His mind.
  3. Our greatest need is for salvation, and that He has already finalised on our behalf.

Yet, I will focus on God. Even today.

 

 

(Long) Sunday Reads

  1. Great marriage lesson about talking honestly of our growing up experiences
  2. Clothes, beauty and Africa (NY Times)
  3. Uganda’s fastest and cheapest street food: Rolex. Do yourself a favour and google how the typical Ugandan pronounces it 🙂
  4. …. and then a brief history of Vietnam’s street food, the Banh  mi.
  5. School lunches in Japan.
  6. So much good in this story.
  7. Relationship goals. Yes!!
  8. I love mussels and this seems so simple to make at home.
  9. I sometimes feel this way about my accomplishments. Yeah!
  10. I WANNA host an ice cream social too.
  11. Because Lagos loves to party.
  12. Bringing up kids in this day and age is not for the faint hearted.
  13. Giving birth in Guinea is not child’s play.
  14. We must watch Hidden Figures. Very important story to tell!!
  15. Yummy (no egg) ice cream recipe.
  16. This is my plan for September – need to get a proposal out.
  17. I had a similar meal recently at a restaurant, YUMMY cauliflower.
  18. Some more productivity hacks.
  19. This letter. So true and poignant!

Belated Sunday Reads

  1. The movie Happiness.
  2. Environment and other influences also positively (or not) affect outcomes.
  3. Understanding land and identity in Kenya.
  4. An article whose title promised so much but gave nothing finally.
  5. Growing up today. I suddenly felt 76 years old …
  6. Certainly sure my take on this. God loves sinners, we are all sinners.
  7. Is it OK to leave your child unattended while you dash off to the shops?

Sunday Reads

  1. Books to inspire healthy eating.
  2. Taking care of your knives. I got so many knives as a wedding gift, so this is personally meaningful.
  3. Imagine finding out that what you think of your parents is not so.
  4. Considering all the stuff on HONY the past two weeks, this is so painful to imagine.
  5. Like her blog and this post because it had products that I could probably use.
  6. Probably the only review of Lemonade that resonates.
  7. Learnt a new word this week: syndemic!
  8. It is so true that children have to be taught to hate.
  9. This portrayal of beauty in Kenya over the last 100 years is NOT really representative in my eyes.
  10. I used to advocate for the death penalty.Not anymore.
  11. I really miss living in the same town as my best best friends. I said it!
  12. Love the show Blackish, very interesting to listen to the interview with the shows creator.
  13. Different recipes

Long Sunday Reads

  1. Thoughtful cards that recognise the many paths to parenthood.
  2. I would happily co-sign the petition to have all academic research freely distributed. (NY Times link)
  3. The top researchers on RePec (Research Papers in Economics) from a ” Developing Country” are all male and predominantly pale.
  4. Jeez, the ethics and externalities stemming from a privately owned city in India.
  5. Decorating together as a couple.
  6. Relationships aren’t always exciting or glamorous. And that’s fine. These 24 comics celebrate the more mundane bits of things #7, 12,16,17,19 and especially 22.
  7. I’m already so iffy about eating eggs, not sure it was wise to read this egg on whether to wash eggs or not, whether to keep them in the fridge or not.
  8. Daily life in a major Accra slum. Very riveting (but could be gross) read.
  9. Imagine if your hotel owner knowingly spied on you while you visited their hotel?
  10. Don’t let fear dictate how your life should be / the pressures that women face regarding marriage.
  11. Data sources for researchers, many free and easily available.
  12. No more boy only OR girl only books.
  13. Wearable baby tech marketed to parents based on fear mongering.So shameful and morally horrid.
  14. What will happen when African leaders take their election rigging online? I cannot even imagine!
  15. I am sometimes guilty of not taking my job THIS seriously!!
  16. Various recipes this week.

Sunday Reads

  1. Quick lunch/snack recipe: Chickpea “tuna” salad 
  2. Cooking with lentils & beans
  3. Don’t really like vegetarian burgers but these lentil meatballs sure look yum!
  4. This article made me realise why people do not share the names of their babys before birth, but clearly once they are born, the name is not safe either!!
  5. Pics of the beautiful Cape Town.
  6. Beautiful pics of the Festima Festival in Burkina Faso.
  7. Some non-traditional baby gift ideas.
  8. Breaking up is hard. Breaking up in the day of Facebook, is something else altogether.(NY Times Article)
  9. A better way to think of your to-do list.
  10. Get Tested. Be Faithful. Remain Faithful. Otherwise, always use protection.
  11. On buying friendship in Japan. Read this and thanked God for my genuine (free) friendships.
  12. This lady did what I always say to my single pals about putting themselves out there in order to meet a guy!
  13. Sad that the recently legalised Marijuana business in the states has a colour preference.
  14. How do you feel about motherhood?

null

Sunday Reads

6 words that will demystify debt crises | TED

  1. Discipline, nature or nurture?
  2. In case you love Longreads and want to catch up on some of the year’s best readings.
  3. As if I did not already want to go to Turkey,this beautiful post here for you!!
  4. Oh dear me, I can comfortably say I will never be an insta-mom!!
  5. On the prevalence of C-sections in the US. Interesting to note that it varies with Mothers ethnicity, age, day of the week and that something like having more on cal obstetricians would keep it within the WHOs 10% target.
  6. The low rewards to thinking short-term!
  7. On using simple household items to tell the story of global inequality!
  8. For all the word ninjas out there – the 58 most mistaken words in the English dictionary.
  9. Maths and Colouring Books if ever you wanted to combine the two!

Enjoy!!

 

Belated Sunday Reads

  1. Some geek humour! Unless of course this paper exists 😦
  2. Who gets aid, where and how much?
  3. Do you want to attend the TedX Johannesburg?
  4. In light of #Feesmustfall, would you be interested in supporting a Wits needy student?
  5. How do you price donor eggs and other competitive and regulatory economics questions of a similar vein.
  6. Even female economists face discriminatory bias.
  7. Don’t have kids but I fully agree.
  8. A great writing guide – write like you would talk.
  9. Academic reading is different from reading for leisure.
  10. Practical ways to help refugees in your city.

Sunday Reads

Greetings from a rainy and cold-ish Cape Town!

  1. New Gilmore Girls episodes coming on Netflix. Be still my heart!!
  2. Welcome back Rory, Old Friend!
  3. So sad this story about dying alone but intriguing what happens behind the scenes.
  4. A cool list of some podcasts to listen to, in case you need some ideas.
  5. Funky (and fashionable) Korean Babies
  6. More on the boy child’s woes!
  7. Some beautiful placards driving the message on #Feesmustfall
  8. Got myself some Castor and Olive oil from this place and it smells DI-vine!
  9. Yummy recipe!! Cauliflower, quinoa and a stir fry
Enjoy!!

18. Sunday Reads

  1. Economists/ data nerds on Tinder might like this
  2. In this day and age of super processed foods, it still surprises me to learn that baby foods are not verboten
  3. I always wondered if Black Twitter is because the large majority of contributors are Black of whether it’s due to the ugliness of it.
  4. For the love of all things Malcolm Gladwell.
  5. Is there hope for us?” Such a heartbreaking story of the state of mankind.
  6. Please God do not let this become an actual thing! Please?
  7. Wanna know the music that played the year you were born?
  8. For my nephew that loves to bake cupcakes
  9. 15 Quick fish recipes
  10. All you need to know about cooking with all things coconut
 
 
 
 

Sunday Reads

In honour of my newly minted niece, there are a lot more baby type links this week so enjoy!!

  1. A really simple frozen yoghurt to try.
  2. Cooking with tea leaves
  3. In honour of my newly minted niece!
  4. Also, this nursery
  5. Looking for recommendations of where to eat in Nairobi? Here goes?
  6. All the things you need to know about cooking chicken
  7. Cape Town for a week on a budget (Not sure how old this article is)
  8. Lessons that secular and faith based developmental organisations could learn from each other.
  9. The IKEA effect and studies we actually need done (h/t Thembalee)
  10. Some interesting ways to ask your kiddo how their day was.

Enjoy

Long weekend Reads

Some reads for the long weekend

  1. Interesting to learn about the different methods and techniques that go into making a pair of jeans.
  2. Desperation drives even the best of us to do the worst of things.
  3. Reading about these kids just broke my heart!
  4. Again with making kids the centre of a home and the toll it takes on them!
  5. But I love this Pope!
  6. Of expected things that don’t happen
  7. Love this post about waiting!
  8. My parents clearly spoke to these parents. No sleepovers for us either!
  9. I wanna try this pasta recipe

Happy Women’s Day!!

Sunday Reads

Enjoy …

  1. Bringing up spoilt kids and how we have allowed it! This is my worst, worst, worst fear!
  2. I love potato salad but I hate mayo. Here are some alternative dressings. 
  3. Hilarious ad with little kiddos on my world’s favorite topic – poo!!
  4. I loved Rory Gilmore. I wanted her life (actually still do). We are so due for a Movie!
  5. I would still buy one of these dolls at all of thirty!
  6. BECAUSE Hummus!
  7. To take or not your husbands surname? Main article and Readers response (NYT Articles)
  8. Three foodie bloggers that piqued my interest this week: Alexandra Cooks  | Eat in my Kitchen Dishing up the Dirt
  9.  Such a sad story but also inspiring about the strength of mankind.

Double edition Sunday reads

Some stuff I read over the past week and liked.

  1. Wanna know what Obama eats?
  2. Avoiding sexism in the Economics field.
  3. Because I Love Viola Davis.
  4. Why Teenagers behave as they do.
  5. Hair through the decades
  6. Why are slow cookers sales on the rise?
  7. Why twelve weeks of maternity leave?
  8. Very interesting project related to books
  9. Should bosses allow workers to work from home?
  10. Top 50 movies of the 2010s so far. First 50. Second 50.
  11. What happens when a restaurant dies?
  12. The unlikely intervention of meritocracy and privilege
  13. My next little challenge (starting on Ash Wednesday)
  14. So sad to hear that Parenthood is over.
  15. LOVE this chick’s (Rachel Kerr) music. She sounds like Bay but she is so much better.
  16. BONUS: Don’t know what this writer expected but she got told in the comments.

Links from this week

As you have your breaky/tea/ lunch break, please enjoy stuff that I have read this week that I liked.

 

Stuff I’ve read this week

This article was Freshly pressed on WordPress and I must say it is well written and got me really thinking. She talks about white privilege and race.

Ever wondered about Scientology?

For the mothers out there!

The university that has not admitted women since 1917! Also here.

Changes to the Obamas.

Why do people still eat white bread?

When did we start rolling our eyes to express contempt?

Talking weight in a relationship?

What did you read recently that made you giddy with joy?