Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Book Review: I am a woman, I am not dumb.



Today's post is a twofer- book review post as well as Word! post. If you check my labels on the right side of this page, you will see that I write reviews on books I have read under "book review" labels and also write inspirational and Christian-related stuff under "Word!" labels. Well this book by Matthew Ashimolowo of the KICC Ministries def falls under both categories, and what can I say...I recommend the book to every lady (and even every sensible man)!

In his book, Matthew Ashimolowo gives some serious insight into what every woman should look out for when choosing her man. It's that simple. Serious insight based on God's Word, backed up with scripture, very straightforward and to the point. I particularly like the way Pastor Matthew wrote the book. It is not the usual long prose split into chapters, instead it has many key points on the actions of a wise woman as he put it, with articles written on each point. Each point and it's article did not cover more than two pages. So it is basically 101 key points that are straight to the point. No long story. You can pick up the book at any time and browse through the key points as a quick reminder.

You can see how the writer let's us know in no sympathetic terms how we get it wrong so many times, maybe due to desperation or social pressure or because he is so damn hot and sexy- but these reasons only come back to burn us badly in the long run! From experience, from stories I have read and heard from friends, we women are really too sentimental and we need to focus more on what we DESERVE. We need to focus on our own self esteem. The right guy is the one who will love us for who we are. Of course we need to work on ourselves, it's all about compromise and being a better person day by day, because just as we pray for the right man, the right man is probably praying for the right woman as well! However Pastor Matthew Ashimolowo is showing us in his book the red flags we should watch out for, and basically things we should look for in a man, based on God's Word. These are things we should even pray about, so that God will help us seek out men with these qualities.

You need to read the book to understand and appreciate it. "Wise women do not get into emotional attachments", "Wise women avoid the I cant help it syndrome", "Wise women do not get foolishly passionate". You know we fall into these traps ever so often don't you? I just read the "Why Men marry Bitches" book by Sherry Argov which I will review next month, and the book is about how men will rather go for a woman who knows her worth, who doesn't fall so quickly into bed with a man, who carries herself with pride and esteem and who knows when to say "no". Now "Why Men marry Bitches" is not even a Christian book, but it speaks the truth ladies. "I am a woman, I am not dumb", speaks the same message, bringing it from the viewpoint of the Word of God.

Here are a few of my fave points from the book.

Wise single women refuse to act like wives i.e washing, cooking and hosting friends
They do not accept engagement without being properly courted
They do not lower their standards and sell themselves short
They are wise to say no in courtship to things they do not want in marriage
A wise woman builds relationships that are based on values not valuables

And this one- for the stingy men who over-flog the "I don't want a materialistic woman" issue as well as those ladies who think it's cool to not expect gifts and stuff from your man..... read the last paragraph!

If a MALE writer who should normally be biased about such issues should write this, with scripture backing it up, then it must be the absolute truth! Just remember to consider the man's financial status and the fact it's not really about the price all the time, but it's about the attitude and intention.

The book is available in Christian stores and also on eBay and Amazon.

Got any other relationship books you recommend?


Monday, 28 April 2014

Fun at Nike Art Gallery- (Part 2) plus SweetKiwie Froyo!

I dunno why blogger decided to invert this pic, despite all my efforts. But it's beautiful don't you think? It's wood work, and I love the fact that it's done on several individual slats of wood- kinda like a puzzle concept. I guess it's meant to be laid on the floor but not stepped on..I dunno.....
Anyway this is part 2 of my post on my time at the Nike Art Gallery. Just wanted to show you some more pics. It's no news that art isn't very much appreciated here. But art is not cheap though...I will make do with appreciating it with my eyes and hands for now! :-D

Some more puzzle-wood-painting-art thingies....

This one was made of some material I couldn't figure out. But I like the rooftop, aerial view concept of it.

This was Abraham's fave. Really creative and speaks a very loud message- the pressures of this world and news events, media, they weigh on man and entrap him.

Closer shots at the newpaper gotta appreciate the innovation put into this!

Mad detailing.

The sculptor tried to recreate the popular excavations from hundreds of years ago- I think Nok sculptures. He used some white stone-like material. 

No this isn't a painting! We went to SweetKiwie Froyo on Admiralty Way at Lekki for some frozen yoghurt. I like the ambience of the place. 

You get to serve yourself, and I went crazy and got 6 flavours! Kiwi, apple, pomegranate, banana, mango and a 6th one I can't recall. Then there are toppings available (fruit or sweet stuff like cookies and candy). I picked grapes and pineapple. Then we had to weigh what we took and my 9.4g cup cost about N1300 I think. The stuff tasted SO good though! And if it's zero fat as claimed, very low in calories and contains live cultures of healthy yoghurt bacteria which is GREAT for the body, then SweetKiwie Froyo is a gem. Abraham said this might just be the new hot spot for Lagosians- Coldstone Creamery might just have to give way to SweetKiwie Froyo. Lol.

Tried the frozen yoghurt before? Dyu like it?

Thursday, 24 April 2014

DIY fabric flower earrings!

Hello my people!
Hope you enjoyed the Easter break! I did...
Anyways I have come again with another DIY project of mine. DIY projects are not for everyone. I mean, you would rather buy an earring than make one right? But for those like me, it's about the process of making something lovely, from scratch, and also, you can make something custom-designed for and by you! DIY projects are fun to me, they relax me, and I have given out so many jewelry items as gifts. I am an artsy person, and I still believe sometime in the future, I will take up art classes. It's never too late eh?

So I made these cute fabric flower earrings some days ago.It's super-easy, and you can make yours to be bigger, longer, smaller or brighter in colour.

On the left: Items I used. Scissors, thread and needle (threaded and knotted at one end), earring hooks, length of chain (I used bronze), jump rings, round nose pliers (not shown here) a circular object to cut out circles of fabric, fabric of course. If you look closely I used 3 different types of fabric. Ankara, a shimmery fabric I cut from an old party skirt, and some netting fabric. This is where you get creative and custom-design your earrings. You can use whatever fabric you like, use as many different kinds of fabric, use any size of circular object to make your circles, cut out as many circles as you want, just do what you like.
On the right: I was cutting out my circles here after drawing the circular outline with a pen. You want to fold the fabric 2ce so you can cut out many circles at once. Saves time.
Once you are done with your circles, pick one and fold into half, then fold again into another half to form a quadrant as shown the 1st pic.
Pass the threaded needle through the base (the sharp pointed part). Make another quadrant with another circular piece of fabric and arrange it to align with the first quadrant. Then pass the needle through the base.
Continue this process, adding more quadrants in whatever pattern you like, as shown in the 2nd pic. Just make sure you align the quadrants so the bases are in the same position.
When you are done, pull the thread taut and pass it through the stack 2 times to make it tight and firm. Then make a firm knot. (3rd pic)

Snip off any excess thread. You can start opening the folds- you should have something like a flower.

When you separate your "flower", look for the middle region and look for the thread stitch. This is where you will pass the jump ring and then the chain. Pass another jump ring through the free end of the chain, and add the earring hook to it.

And you are done! Of course, you need to repeat the whole process for the second earring.
If you don't have pliers and jump rings and chains and you wanna try this project or begin to make your own things once in a while, you should go to "Crafties" store. This store has EVERYTHING you need, and at affordable prices too.

I wanna make another pair of brighter and fuller earrings, and I also wanna make a pair of super-long ones- the ones that graze the top of the boobies-yea those ones :-) It's really all about the length of the chain!


Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Fun at Nike Art Gallery

Hey! Did you have a good time this Easter? In Nigeria, Easter is well-celebrated and we even get a 2-day public holiday! I later even found out there was  Lagos carnival. I kept a low profile for the first coupla days but on Monday I drove to Lekki to meet with my homie and we set off to the Nike Art Gallery. Boy did I have a lot of fun! Artists rock! I would stare at a painting and realize how much work, skill, patience and sweat went into every inch of the piece. It was a beautiful experience. The gallery has got LOADS of artwork- paintings, motifs, collages, sculpture, metal work, textiles etc. 4 floors of awesomeness. See for yourself...

I love paintings like these- they just draw you in.

Here the artist actually used actual metal plates to make the tin roofs of the buildings! My iphone camera couldn't quite capture this. I had to touch it to believe they were metal plates.

Peep the afro ladies on the left and right. Lol

Tried to capture the detailing here- the dude used tiny beads. You have to get close to realize it.

These 2 pics above of the bus parks are also part of my faves. The artist really paid attention to detail.

Now this one right here was spectacular- my friend Abraham made me see that the bull? or ram? head and the horse head behind it was made of car tires! I'm still amped about the creativity and resourcefulness displayed here.

Abraham fooling around with the horn :-)

"Don't mess with me", she says :-)

When I asked how much one of the large paintings cost, the attendant said it cost N3,000,000. That's about $19,000. No wonder art is seen as an investment. 

I have some more pics to show you- I didn't wanna crowd this post with too many pics. And yes we got crazy and took so many pics we got cautioned to stop! Lol. So there's some more cool stuff I will show y'all in my next 2 posts, along with where we eventually went to to chill for a bit. Stay tuned!

What did you get up to this Easter?

Sunday, 20 April 2014

Review (Mary Kay concealer) and custom blending

Hi guys,

Just a quick post on how I am finding my Mary Kay concealers. Yes, concealers in plural, cos I use 2 shades and custom-blend it. So this post is just a review and a bit of info on I learnt on concealer application and custom blending. 
I know Mary Kay concealers are well-known by you; I was thinking, come to think of it, Mary Kay products are actually quite good! I guess what's been happening these past 10 years is that ladies are really experimenting and exploring many other make up lines, but I remember years ago when ladies in Naija were really into Mary Kay. I know I used the pressed powder for ages, I had a berry-toned Mary Kay lipstick I used till I hit pan, a dark brown mascara, lipgloss, concealer and a few other Mary Kay stuff. 

Well after my dismal experience with the Elf Complete Coverage concealer (check out the review here), I decided to try the Mary Kay concealer. 

As you can see, I have some discoloration and spots as well as dark under-eye circles.
I used the concealers by taking some product with my Real Techniques foundation brush for the discoloration at the sides of my face, forehead and beneath my eyes, using a dabbing technique. I used a small concealer brush for my eyebrow region as well as the smaller spots.
I find it to be amazing at concealing blemishes and discoloration.

Here, I had applied foundation and concealer, and basically all the works. Look how the concealer covered up the discoloration. I just set the whole face with my Mac Studio Finish powder, using my Real Techniques powder brush and a smaller powder brush for the under-eye region.

My verdict: I am sure most of you have used this concealer before. All I can say is, if you need an affordable, yet effective concealer, and can't afford Mac Pro Long wear, Laura Mercier concealers etc, then this concealer is the one to get. It lasts all day, is easy to apply and can be built up for a heavier coverage. Of course it's always best to prime your face before applying foundation and concealer and to set it with powder. It cost N1300 ($8). The tube is very convenient for me because I just squeeze what I need onto the back of my hand, and I can control the quantity of product that comes out. Will I repurchase? YES. 

Custom-blending: I find that make up artists blend light and dark shades to get the right shade they need for foundation and concealer. What I do now is to blend a very light shade (Beige 2) with a dark one (Bronze 2). It only took one or two attempts for me to get the right mix for me. Custom blending helps you achieve a perfect shade, at anytime-whether you have a new tan or you have gone lighter in complexion. Also because most times you need 2 different concealer shades to cover up different issues, the custom blending method is useful for this. For example, since a lighter concealer shade is needed for under eye circles and creases around the mouth and eyes, I just mix a lighter shade for this purpose.

From bottom: beige 2, bronze 2, my blend using those quantities
The only con to this method is that it may be more expensive because you are buying 2 products instead of one, but I think it is well worth it. Of course, the method is also great for foundation shades, which I am definitely gonna try with Sleek BB cream foundation once I can lay my hands on a darker shade to mix with the light one I already have. 

To achieve my "kinda barely there look" I used:
Face: Flori Roberts Shine Away primer, Mary Kay foundation primer, Mary Kay (bronze 500) medium coverage foundation, MaryKay concealers in bronze 2 and beige 2, Mac Studio Finish powder (NC45), Sleek Face Form contour kit, cheapie blush (reddish shade and lightly applied)

Eyes: Sleek storm 578 palette (shades of brown, black and goldish brown), Love alpha gel eyeliner in black, Mac kohl pencil in black, Maybelline Volume Express for smokey eyes mascara in black

Brows: Davis eye pencil (was impatient and did a crappy job of it)

Lips: Cheapie reddish-brown lip pencil, Wet n Wild Megalast lipstick (Mochalicious)

What do you think? Did I nail the "barely there" look? What great concealers do you use?

Friday, 18 April 2014

What I have been doing to stay in shape

Before vs After

It’s been a year since I started my healthy living journey. I started with a weight-loss journey and in 2-3 months I was good. Thereafter, it’s been maintenance of course. The main struggle was making healthy eating and working out a lifestyle to me-as in, second nature. I would call it 3rd nature at the moment lol.

But I am mighty impressed with how I have been able to keep the fat off-in fact I think I lost about 2 or 3kg this past 3 months, and it wasn’t even deliberate.

Eating healthy: This is very cliché of course. No need to ramble on and on about what to eat and what to avoid. But really, once you start eating better, and you stick to it for about a month, you begin to get used to it. Now, my portions are smaller, I don’t feel comfy if I haven’t had fruits in 3 days, I can’t eat too much sugary stuff or else I have terrible tummy aches and gas. The key is to stay disciplined.

Not eating late: I am now used to this, it really helps to keep the fat off, particularly around the tummy.

Working out the fun way: It’s always best to spice things up and change things around, cos a boring workout would likely ensure you begin to have excuses for working out! That’s why I started zumba classes in form of videos. I downloaded them online and I play them some mornings as a form of aerobics. It’s more fun cos it involves dance moves. And it is very effective! I also do ab workouts. I downloaded a free app from the Apple app store, on my iphone. It has a reminder alert to remind you when you forget, and a calorie-counter, and of course videos with voice-overs and 3 different fitness levels and 3 different durations.

Determination and Discipline: I have always said I wanna be a MILF, and I just wanna look super hot even when I am 50. I also know I have to start NOW, so it becomes a habit. Discipline isn’t easy-it wasn’t meant to be. We are all wired to do things the easy way right? But as they say, no pain, no gain!

I still really need to work on my consistency though. I had better marry a man who is health and fitness-conscious; I would need all the support and encouragement I can get!