Tag Archive | Friendships

Mini House Party.

During my last birthday, I made a few commitments to self and listed down a few realistic things that I’d like to have done before the next one. So I was revisiting the post to remind myself of what I still need to work towards. Or if I have managed to do them, I can start on a new list, because there’s still so much more to be done. It was such an encouragement because I realized that I have managed to accomplish at least over 70% of what was on the list. But it doesn’t stop with the tiny victories, some of those things listed are not projects that have an end date. This was just to get me started, and then keep up those activities for a lifetime.

The point of the post was to tell you a little more about a friend I treasure – not that I don’t treasure the rest, it’s because last week was her birthday, and I thought, maybe I don’t talk about my friends much on here. She goes by the name Elizabeth Njeri, I prefer to call her Njeri, but she’d introduce herself as Elizabeth (pronounced with an s instead of z). She’s not as complicated as I make her sound. On the contrary she’s extremely simple and down to earth, but don’t let that deceive you, she’s pretty confident that it may intimidate you when you first meet her.

Friendships

Photo shoot with the girls – Naomi (left), Njeri (Center), Mariah (Back Center)

I met her when I was doing my post-graduate diploma at KIM (Kenya Institute of Management). As you would know by now (if you stalk my blog), I make acquaintances easily, because I can be the chatterbox. Although, I have a special place in my heart for people I share similar interest with. With this in mind, we gradually started talking after class, sharing notes, and reading for exams together, before we knew it, we were in each other’s lives.

She had (still has) a best friend called Naomi. I won’t say her pet name, because I think she’d literally skin me alive if I did. They think I have one too many readers, but I don’t disagree, I secretly hope so too. I shared classes with both, and by virtue of hanging out with Njeri, I became Naomi’s friend and then Mariah’s too. I’m that chic. I intercept friendships and hijack all of them and they become my best friends too. It’s either I deserved them or they deserved me.

That was 2010, fast forward. Since then we have been there for each others milestone. From birthdays, graduations, anniversaries, engagements, name it, we try. What I love about them, is that they’re as real as real gets. Whether it’s about how you’ve made them feel, how you look, or your outlook on things, the feedback they give you is legit. They always challenge me to be a better person and a better friend. I know I can suck at friendship things, but they’re aggressive about it and I more than love it.

When the opportunity to host a ‘birthday dinner’, better yet, a mini house party for Njeri presented itself, we dug right into it. It was supposed to be a surprise, but I forgot to mention that nothing gets past her. Pulling a surprise on her is becoming our vision. By the time she was getting to our place, she knew something was cooking. And of course there was a lot cooking.  From delish food, drinks, some really competitive scrabble, old friends meeting new friends, and because we were having so much fun, we almost forgot to cut the cake. I secretly wish everyone had…lol, that cake, you know the kind that melts in your mouth. Only problem is we were also over-fed.

We live for such moments, when your friends become more like family. Njeri, to a new year and many more ahead. This one is definitely going to be one of the best. It was an honor celebrating it with you. It will always get bigger & better :-)

December is here and Christmas is around the corner, my favorite time of the year. Happy new month lovelies!

Signing Off ~~~ *Kawi*

The Traditional Ceremony

I came back from my leave. It seemed long at first, until the days flew by and the next thing I knew, Sunday was here and I was putting my work things together – the handbag I mean. When I get off work, I always throw it in some corner in the house and forget about it – it sort of symbolizes the work – home switch. It sure did feel like opening day when I was resuming on Monday morning. Your brain has to adjust to the environment. However, I totally enjoyed having both a mental and physical break. Sometimes your body and mind need some R&R to restore your mojo for everything.

We also had our Ruracio. You know, the traditional ceremony. Just a sneak peak of what it’s all about. The man’s family first visits the lady’s family, for a formal introduction. In Meru, during this formal introduction, miraa (khat, whether in its physical form or cash) symbolizes the booking of the lady. After this, no other man can come to the lady’s house and declare interest. It also helps that you both no longer have the awkward “this is my friend, good friend” conversation with your parents & relatives every time you meet. They know he’s the man you intend to spend your life with. Then once the introductions have been done, the man’s family is then told what the dowry entails and they’re meant to negotiate for thee lady (me in this case). Traditional ceremonies are fun, but of course when you’re on the spectator part of the field, not when you’re the man in the arena. At that point you’re tense from your hair strands to your toes.

So once the man’s family has negotiated with the lady’s family, comes the 2nd meeting which is the Ruracio. They present part of the dowry to the lady’s parents in the presence of the relatives. Apparently, the dowry can’t be paid all at once. It’s an act that’s done over a lifetime, it’s a relationship that has just began. And that’s how you become traditionally married. It’s no longer, the man’s family now but the in law’s – in love’s perhaps. I’m traditionally someone’s wife now. And the question everyone is asking, is what next? “have you set dates for the wedding?”, “have you gotten a dress?”, “what’s your theme?”, “have you settled on a venue?” No one gives you a break to even absorb the fact that you two just made what was possibly the biggest decision (i.e. a lifetime commitment to each other) in your lives just yet.

But we’re not complaining, we’ll definitely need to be bound by law and make that covenant before God and man. And that’s coming soon to a garden near you. Gadamn! How grown up have we become already?

The ceremony was a small one. With family and close friends in attendance. We invited some, others we forgot, important ones, but it was nothing personal. When you have these events – especially if you’re not an events person or quite the planner, your memory tends to be obscured by the event, that’s all you think & dream, the last thing on your mind are who the guests will be in attendance. While we’d have loved to have everyone on board, it was virtually impossible. There are constraints like; their availability, hosting capability, pressure to deliver, and so on that exist. It’s quite an interesting road to pass through because it opens your eyes and it makes you understand why people do things the way they do.

It’s definitely a story worth narrating another day, and using it to encourage others who are going through the same process. We got a lot of support from family and friends. From our friends, I learnt that sisterhood and brotherhood does exist – that your friends can be there for you, even when you haven’t asked them to be. They volunteer, just because. There’s not a day we lost sleep over how we’ll get some things that were expected of us, despite us being clueless about how to go about getting them – from BIG sufuria’s, leso’s, honey and much more. We got so much encouragement, we shared stories and experiences, we laughed, we ate and we celebrated together. But even better, friendships got sealed & our families got bigger. To us, that’s what mattered the most.

To those who wished us well, we are grateful. Lots of love & light!

Ceremony, Ruracio, Traditional Ceremony, Marriage

*Funny, I barely took any pics with my device, the ones I did were a blur. When I get the some good pics soon (from my baptized photographer of the day), I’ll be sure to share.

Signing off ~~~ *Kawi*

 

Irreplaceable Values in Friendships

I have been silent, guilty as charged. I’ve also felt it. It wasn’t by choice as the other areas of my life were seeking pretty much a huge chunk of my attention. The remaining 10% of which I could have stolen a chance to write, mostly in the evenings, I dozed off, watched a movie with the mister (which means, dozed off) or hosted friends over for dinner (which means, mini-party). However, I’m 100% well, which I’m thankful for, and so are the people dear to me. It feels like we should say AMEN already.

In other news, remember the What Next post. Well, I’m planning to make sure I have answers to your ‘what next’ questions about my life plans. You know things like, “when’s the wedding”. Now that we’re starting on the traditional bit, that’s some good progress. Truth be told, I never imagined that I’ll be thinking such big things (like marriage and a wedding) this soon. I smile every time I remember that we have a wedding to plan, yet I have no clue how to go about it. But that should never be a bother, we have a wealth of experience around us – to think we already have a designer and wedding planner in the family.

I remember the mister once telling me that I was the 1st girlfriend to actually take him to a wedding or traditional wedding (ruracio). Sometimes I have goldfish memory, but that one stuck in my mind. For once, when he told me (I must’ve just aww’ed then, however this is the real feeling), I felt like I have made a difference in my partner’s life. In an insignificant way to me (because to me, it was just another traditional wedding or wedding) but in a significant way to him (because to him, it’s something he’d always wanted to do but an opportunity had never presented itself). On the upside, at least he never got an old person poking him and telling him “you’re next”. Now, he has a person to point to if that questions ever comes his way.

Just before you wonder what I value in our friendrelationship, let me tell you just one before I drop down a long list. He was my first cooking and now baking buddy. He taught me how to grill (or basically use the oven) – at least I’d mastered the pan, so food-wise he was sorted out. We also baked our first cupcakes together – Google was the teacher. No pans or sufuria’s have been thrown to the other in the process so far. That’s a good thing, considering we still cooperate even when the recipes get confusing or when one thinks they can do it better than the other but figure how to accommodate each other’s expertise.

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That got me thinking of values. Do you ever think of what value you add to the person(s) you meet or the people you spend your days with? Because what’s friendship if you don’t add some value to someone? If you don’t feed off each other? Yes, friendship is a symbiotic relationship. I usually say that if I meet someone and we hit it off, at least let us have a conversation that will somehow build each in one way or another, even if for humors sake. Like leave someone laughing their guts out or happy about themselves or what they do.

What makes someone irreplaceable is not who they are or seem to be as individuals, but the value they bring to your life, even if for the moment you interact with them.

There are people you meet and you feel like they’re sucking the life out of you, like you’re offering too much of yourself yet you’re getting nothing in return. While there are others you meet that speak life into you and the moment you part ways, you feel reenergized, and given a chance, you’d not want to let them go. What are those things you value in your friendships?

Happy Eid Mubarak to all my Muslim friends.

Signing Off ~~~ *Kawi*

What Are You Doing For Others?

Just imagine you’re on traffic and you want to join the next lane, but this person keeps on blocking you from joining his lane. Annoying right? Well your mind goes on an overdrive, “*throws some curse words their way* stingy blocker, they just don’t want me to prosper.” That’s what runs through your mind, no? At least that’s what we say about the people who just can’t bare seeing you ahead of them or successful.

Then, there’s this person that just paves the way for you. You indicated that you want to join his lane and he just gives you way struggle-free and life moves on. Not that you deserve it, they’re either just generally courteous or they felt that desire to momentarily put their needs aside and give you a hand in handling yours. Sometimes you’re the road hog and you think that your business is more important than the other persons’, or that you are more deserving (which means, at that moment you think they’re not).

We forget to then that reason we get through a couple of circumstances is because someone somewhere paved the way for you. Not necessarily giving you way in traffic, but that counts too. Like going out of their way to make sure that you’re sorted out if you had an issue; taking time out of their tight schedule to be there for you, it could be through a visit, a call, a text saying “hi” or simply, liking their Facebook status; finding out what disturbing your friend/acquaintance and giving them your ear even if for a moment; biting the bullet for your team-mate and walking with them through a tough situation.

This may go unnoticed. Actually, in most cases it always does, at least by the public, but it makes a humongous difference for the person directly impacted. You that feeling when the person in traffic paves way for you and you want to; get out of the car and shake his hand, or wave frantically, or give them a big “THANK YOU” shout out. Now imagine if we generated that kind of feeling in all the places we grace or the people we rub shoulders with?

Kawi Snippets, Paving The Way

Doing something for someone (small or big) without necessarily expecting recognition or a return of the favor, but just because you want to see them ease-up and smile, even if for a moment. Those are the things that keep me awake at night. Most of the time.

Happy Hump Day!

Signing Off ~~~ *Kawi*

Of Treasures and Girlfriends

It’s been crazy but beautiful. I’ve been working, working really hard, like the good girl I am *toot toot*. So you can imagine when I want to write a captivating post and well, the only thing going on is work and the personal life I pick up over the weekends. I have come to that point where I look forward to the weekend like never before. It feels very well deserved with just 2 days to live it out. There should have been a day slotted between Saturday and Sunday, someone slacked on the day naming job.

However, I’d like to tell you about a treasure I found. Late last year when I did my big chop (aka BC, I’ve become one of them already), my excited friends led me into a series of groups that would induct me through my natural phase, lest I relapse. Kidding, but I guess they knew how natural kinky hair needs a lot of TLC as well as a couple of girlies that have your back when the mane gets tough.

That’s how I found this group of beautiful online girlfriends called “Kurlly Diaries”. You know how you end up loving people you’ve never met, because somehow even as you communicate virtually, there’s some realness that manifests itself. And it’s through that realness, that they’ve managed to play an important role in my life. Such that even when the notifications are in excess, I open them gladly in my free who lied and told us there’s free time? time, just to see what someone has to say. I learn a lot of girl stuff from them – especially when it comes to managing my small mane – hair and body products, and referrals on where to get legit and affordable stuff.

They come up with challenges that sometimes I’m too lazy to take up but one thing I admire about them is the effort they (some ladies) put in their day-to-day operations to better their life and that of their loved ones. It pushes me to stop being lazy and get going too. From health & beauty regimens, fashion, DIY’s, food, to financial & time management. They share information, help each other out & let you be. They think of fun ways to make these difficult tasks manageable. They encourage each other with every step made to achieve the task or challenge presented and at the end sometimes even give small rewards to the most engaging person.

The one that recently caught my attention was “emptying your stash”. The idea is to take a picture of the stash you have (whether full or half way done) and then aim to first finish them before purchasing others. I’m the kind of person that can purchase a product just because … someone told me it works great, serves a purpose I intend to achieve even though not necessary/urgent or it looks good, it’s affordable and I can own it.

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With this challenge, I now feel the need to question the necessity and relevance of things before I purchase them. To the extent that I have the good against evil conversations with myself at the store, and talk myself out of an unnecessary purchase. To make sure I make use of what I have first before greed gets the better part of me.

“If I don’t need it, then I don’t buy it. If there’s something else that serves the same purpose, does it well & I still have it stashed, then I don’t buy it.”

It’s now as simple as that. That so far has helped me become more conscious during my purchases, which will in turn help me save a shilling or more in the long run.

On the same note, just after claiming how clueless I am about weddings, which I really am for real, not kidding, I got some girlfriend offers from Flo Ngigi (she could possibly be my twin), Wangu Yann (mentor in my teen years, now big sister), Njeri Olang (new God-sent friend) and Elizabeth Njeri (my best of friends, she must’ve been a wedding planner in her other life, she reminds me of 27dresses) – telling me they want to be there for me. I shall use up that offer, so don’t withdraw it, but the thought, just that feeling of wanting to be there for me, that counts. Thank you from the bottom of my heart, you’re my treasures.

Signing off ~~~ *Kawi*

The Million Dollar Question?

Even after I said “YES”, the first question that ran through my mind was, “how did you know the size of my finger?” I was too curious, because that would have been my only selling point.

The story, now that’s the question everyone has been asking of late. I’m not the best at narrating the same story over and over. But it seems for this season that I’m in, I need to get used to it and, that this bling sure does bring a lot of attention. I didn’t see myself in this phase this soon, and maybe that’s why the mister managed to sneak away with it. I was being very futuristic, I didn’t want to give him pressure in as much as all of you out there gave me pressure *looks at you, you and you*. I just wanted to go with the flow.

And with the flow I went. He’s a sneaky one, because on that Saturday 19th April, it was my turn on the rotter to work. He diligently dropped me at work, no signs whatsoever except him booking me for the day and night. All through work, I felt like I was in a daze, which made me think with the weather change I could be in the process of catching a cold. However, I wrote a post too, it was too pressing, I had learnt a couple of things that week through him and with him. Time to go home, I call him just to give him a heads up, and he offers to come back and pick me up. He’d done this a couple of times before so again, it felt normal.

When he picks me up, he hands me a gift bag and inside is perfume. WOW! He had chosen a yummy scent that I immediately adopted as My Scent. I was still in a daze. Let me explain the state, “happy and floaty for no reason, so it just feels a little awkward”. Does that make some sense?

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So we go grab something to bite and go home to watch some flicks looking forward to dinner. This Easter was pretty chilled out with no out-of-town plans (contrary to what we had earlier planned). So I was looking forward to the food, he was clearly looking forward to other grander things. If only I knew. I would have bought a new dress…lol. When evening reaches, he nudges me and tells me to dress-up. With his special line “we can’t be late for this one.” You know we women and our delaying tactics, I got it from my mum.  I was on time this time round, funny enough I didn’t even  give him a hard time getting dressed up. Normally I’d be in jeans but that day, I was very willing to dress up.

Out we went, where? “It’s a surprise,” he says. We check in to Serena and I’m like aha, but the “Captains Table at The Mandhari Restaurant” AHA! I only see all that attention in movies. And the attention is from when you check in to when you’re leaving the building. God bless those lovely waiters.  With a whole bottle of Moet to ourselves, if I knew what was going on, I’d have had a photographer on speed-dial. We just had make do with what we had by ourselves and the new fad – selfies to make memories. I loved the privacy, he knows me too well.

KawiSnippets, Engaged

1. I, very clueless  2. The Mandhari Restaurant Menu 3. Moet, 4. So sparkly, champagne ain’t the yummiest beverage at first but the taste grows on you. 5. The Master of selfies, takes us one. 6. Healthy starter – with wheat, nuts and all things healthy. 7. Mushroom Soup 8. Chicken Soup, 9. with a Quail egg to compliment (even with all the hype, I’d never eaten one yet, there’s a 1st for everything) – It had a name, I can’t remember. 10. Chefs special – Shrimp (with things in it) – I could have eaten more of those, too yummy for just one. 11. Creamy Au Gratin Potatoes – Pure yumminess in a cup plate. I’m now a potato person – being the person who hated potatoes in her food, but with cheese & butter anything is possible. 12. Pork Ribs. 13. Lamb Chops. 14, 15, 16. Those are two happy & grateful people.

It looks like my main word is yummy. It’s either yummy or not yummy. In a nut shell that’s how the evening went down of course followed with a nigh-out with a couple we look up to (not the parents haha, Mr & Mrs Ngigi). I was overwhelmed with joy. Too overwhelmed that we forgot to take pics of the dessert which the waiter said “comes served very hot.” Eh it was hot when she flung open the lid and I saw petals, a box ring and my boyfriend down on one knee.

No, I didn’t cry, not just yet. I think I was too surprised that he decided that it’s about time he “put a ring on my fatty-fatty finger”. I had asked God to give me someone I’ll be ready to spend the rest of my interesting life with. And with him, I felt that this was it. We have been together through the murks and the light as well, we’re growing together, we try up lift each other when either of us is down, we share the same values, beliefs and principles, he loves me all the time, even when I get to his nerves – like when I give completely wrong directions. He’s my all-weather friend. What more could I ask for? I am thankful to God that he’s taken his time to bring closer to me my life partner and we’re on the same page.

Engagement

For the next chapter, there’s no pressure. We’ll arrange it how we know it best, with the help of those who want the best for us. In all honesty, I’m the most clueless of bride-to-be, but we’ll sail through with God’s blessings. Can’t wait for that day and the lifetime to follow though.

To him,

Have a lovely week, now won’t you? To a wonderful journey we’ll have on here. Lot’s of love, light & peace from us to you.

Signing Off ~~~ *Kawi*

 

A Small Gift, Mini-Afro and Big Lesson

Of those gifts you receive and appreciate because its the thought that really counts, but at that moment you disregard it’s function. I’m sure you’ve received such a gift, no? It’s value is not felt immediately. You probably get home and stack it away in your closet hoping that it comes to be of use. Sometimes you just keep it because it’s a gift and it has some sentimental value.

Well, I don’t receive too many gifts, and especially not at random times of the year. This time, when I chopped my hair, my former colleagues gifted me with a metallic afro comb and a flower hair clip, that was a first. My hair was at base level, so the gift didn’t make sense then. I was all grins because it was a gift and which girl doesn’t love gifts? Whether big or small or if it makes sense or no sense.

Then my hair grew to mini-Afro level and my finger combing tactics were getting a little out dated. It just wasn’t working any more and my hair would get tangled up or look pretty untidy. Then one day as I oil my hair, stacked at the back of my made up “dressing corner” I see the that thing we can equate to “an oasis in the desert”, the metallic Afro comb. Then Arufeni’s wise words came to mind, “you’ll need this sometime” and the time was then.

Afro, Gifts, Blessings, Life Lesson

Moral of the story, sometimes we receive our blessings way ahead of time and they don’t make sense then. We have to go through a phase or a season for the blessing to reveal itself and make itself useful in your life in its time. Don’t trash or undervalue gifts given to you just yet. Receive them, keep them and give them time to mature. Give them time to bring value to your life, because that’s the intention of the gift-giver. While you receive physical gifts from loved ones, blessings are your gifts from God. That’s how he shows you some love, most times, it’s through other people.

Thank you Arufeni and Lydia, now I see the value of the comb. It might have been a small gesture, but it has taught me a big lesson.

Signing Off ~~~*Kawi*