Say My Name!

I attended an amazing conference some months ago and the issue of names came up. The point being raised was that your name is your identity and it deserved to be pronounced properly.

After hearing the statement and processing it, I realised I had gotten comfortable with incorrect pronunciation of my name, literally for as long as I could remember. I’m sure many Africans can relate with an official phone call to the house and the person on the other line stumbling at the pronunciation of your name until they manage to offer one that bears a vague type of resemblance to your original name. Or having a supply teacher at school that would insist on calling everyone by their first and last names. Till this day I struggle to understand why this was necessary. Those with foreign sounding names would be subjected to a teacher butchering their name while the other classmates had a giggle at your expense. I wonder if this why we have just come to accept that bad pronunciation of names is ok? Sometimes the hassle of correcting the incorrect pronunciation seems so great that we accept the wrong one so we can quickly leave behind the very embarrassing situation.

In my experience, a lot of Africans (and other races too) accept really poor pronunciations of their names to make things easier for other people. I have also definitely accepted the lie that people not from where I’m from could not pronounce my name properly. The conference I attended helped me to understand what a big lie that is.

There are a plethora of foreign and non English names that are regularly pronounced correctly without struggle. So how hard is your Nigerian name? Your Igbo, Yoruba or Hausa name?

I’ve become so used to pronouncing my name wrongly that I will say it before even realising what I said. It’s something I will continue to work on

Until next time,

Memoirs of a Yoruba girl

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Suprising Uses of Dudu Osun Soap

Hi all,

On to the story for today. I needed to wash my make-up brushes (which we should all do. Check my post out here on why). I did postpone this however because I felt I needed a special cleaning fluid or something to get them clean. I then had a light bulb moment AKA an “ah ha” moment.

The times I’ve previously used Dudu Osun on my face (which is now very infrequently as I’ve found it to be a bit too strong for my face) it removes every single trace of make-up. Literally every single thing. No mascara, eyeliner, nothing. I then thought if it could do such a good job on my face, how much more my make-up brushes.

Conclusion = It .was. amazing.

My brushes haven’t been cleaner and I exaggerate not. I wish I had taken before and after shots of the brushes. This idea has therefore brought about this post.

So in no particular order, what are some not too typical uses of Dudu Osun (or just any brand of black soap) soap.

  1. Cleaning your face

This isn’t a contradiction. It is still a great cleanser, just a very strong one. But it will rid your skin of any make up and is 100% natural, a great bonus

  1. Cleaning your body

This is my favourite use by far. I love the earthy smell, the lather and I love that I feel “clean” afterwards. Please note the suds are brown (because the soap is brown and not actually black). This can stain your bath/shower.

  1. Washing your make up brushes

I wet the soap. I then wet my brushes and swiped them across the soap two or three times. I then worked the soap into the brush head on my palm. The colour of the suds while doing this proves how good it is at getting the make-up off. Then proceed to rinsing the brushes afterwards with some water then leave them to dry.

  1. Washing your hair

Dudu Osun soap is a great alternative to shampoo. When I do use it, I like to just rub the bar of soap across my scalp. Having your hair parted can be quite helpful. I then proceed to work the soap into my scalp, as you would with normal shampoo. Then rinse your hair as normal.

  1. As a shaving cream/lotion

I am not a regular shaver as epilating is my preferred hair removal method. The few times when a shave is required, Dudu Osun is a very good shaving cream lotion. I will simply wet the bar of soap and lather it up between my hands. I will then spread the soap lather on the part that requires a shave (usually the legs). I will then proceed to shave carefully and voila!

The packaging of Dudu Osun has changed slightly and the soap now comes wrapped a little plastic wrap. This did also list some interesting uses so I took a picture and added it in below. It, unfortunately, does not provide instructions on how to use the soap for these great suggestions.

I still use Dudu Osun but have been trying out a few other brands of black soap. Admittedly they don’t differ a great deal and still do the same job.

Have you used Dudu Osun or any other black soap for any of the purposes suggested below? Let me know.

Until next time,

Memoirs Of A Yoruba Girl

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Life Without Autocorrect

Hi all,

Happy new year! Wishing you all an awesome new year filled with all God’s best for you.

Please excuse the loooooong duration since a blog post. The last time I blogged was ….. AUGUST 2017! O dear. Anyway, let’s start the new year as we intend to go on.

So, I’ve been using my phone without autocorrect for the last few months and it has flown by. Surprisingly. It has been one of the easiest and most difficult decisions at the same time.

My decision was inspired by my sister who had done the same thing first. Life without autocorrect has meant I need to sound out certain words I am unsure of previously when autocorrect would have supported me. If I couldn’t remember how to spell a word, I would put in the few letters I could recall and let autocorrect do the job. Now I have to figure it out myself. I think my spelling has improved because of it (not that it was particularly bad before).

 

Being without autocorrect has made me realise how easy it has been to just rely on autocorrect. It has made me lazy in that regard. It also makes me wonder about other things I do that are in fact making me lazy. Autocorrect in itself is great. But when it means my ability to spell certain words is slowly eroding away, something must be done. I wonder if I will ever use autocorrect again.

Until next time (which should be soon!)

Memoirs of a Yoruba Girl

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Enjoy Your Season

I passed my driving test in October 2014. I’ve been blessed to have been driving since then. Driving is great, really great. It allows you to leave home and your destination a bit later than if you were catching a bus/train/underground. Driving is enjoyable and gives me a lot of freedom.

HOWEVER, driving is an expensive habit. I call it an expensive luxury. I now have to think about insurance, MOT, road tax, changing my car tyres periodically, buying fuel, getting the car washed, keeping the car clean, avoiding a ticket, paying toll charges. To be honest, I am still figuring new things that I need to look after, service or pay for. The list goes on and on and on.

There was also a time I couldn’t drive. My only concern then was to buy my travel ticket or top up my oyster and plan my journey with TFL journey planner or Google Maps. I didn’t have to think about insurance or petrol or MOT. I could wile away my journey/commute lost in a book (one of my favourite things to do btw) or listening to music. I didn’t have to pay attention to the road, or the route. The driver get paid to do that. It was however more imperative that I left the house on time to avoid missing the train that came twice an hour. I was also at mercy of delays or cancellations to trains/buses.

I’ve said all that to remind you to enjoy your season. There are always positives to the current season and in the case of my driving, the season of not being able to drive is a one time season and once its gone, you can’t get it back. OF course you can still use public transport but you catch my drift.


Just some musings. Do you agree?

Comment below

Until next time

Memoirs Of A Yoruba Girl

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Why do Young People die?

Over the last few months, I have seen and heard of young people passing away. People younger than me, older than me, people of all ages and walks of life. It seems as though it has been happening very often of recent.

As a young person, I can find it hard to accept or imagine someone in their twenties or thirties would die. In my mind, as a young person, your whole life is ahead of you and it is a given that we will live long to see old age. In your twenties or thirties, you plan your life, your career, where you want to live, how many children to have, when to buy a house and a whole host of other things. These are all things that take time, usually several years. So maybe we take for granted that we have the time to see those plans come to fruition.

But seeing young people pass away of recent always shocks me into reality. We always pray for long life but who knows tomorrow? A lot can happen in a minute. One minute may be the difference between life and death. Life is incredibly delicate and when I think about it, life is difficult, if not impossible to hold on to. I often remember when we sleep, we are in a state of semi consciousness, almost a type of death.

I’ve said all that to say that life is incredibly precious and delicate. We cannot hold on it, however hard we try to. It ticks on and on and the surest fact of life is the fact we will all one day leave this earth. In light of that, I will do my best (and need to do so even more) to ensure I live everyday to the maximum. Ideas I have, I’ll try to not procrastinate them.

Until next time,

Memoirs Of A Yoruba Girl

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African Immigrants and a Dying Culture

I am a second generation African immigrant. That means my mum and dad are the first generation of Africans (in my family anyway) to emigrate from their home country. Being a second generation African is not unique to me and is the story of several other people in and around my age bracket, the “millennial” generation. I do feel that being a 2nd generation African puts me (and others in my position) in a somewhat precarious situation.

I identify with being a Nigerian of Yoruba origin. I understand however I might not be able to completely fit in with my fellow people given the fact I haven’t grown up in Nigeria.

I also identify with being British given that I was born here and have grown up here. I do know however that to the average third generational English man or woman, (although I may be born here) I’m not really British. It’s a question I’m often asked at work, “Where do you REALLY come from?”👀

Where do I fit? As I thought about this question I realised a lot of people are faced with same question. It may be you are from different parts of the country I.e. Your mother is from Delta state and your dad is from Ogun state (both in Nigeria). It may be a continental thing I.e. your mum is from Ghana and Dad is from South Africa. It may be an emigration thing (my example fits here).

Can we really identify with a particular culture? Is it being born in a specific place that makes you a member of that culture or your ancestry? Now we can trace our ancestry with a simple swab test. Surprisingly enough – most people are not 100% of anything in particular anyway, which makes things EVEN more confusing.

I watched this video and it was eye-opening. I haven’t reached a conclusion yet, still thinking it over. What do you think?

Until next time

Memoirs of a Yoruba Girl

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Father’s day Gift Ideas for the Modern African dad

I’ve consistently found my dad is the hardest person to buy any type of gift, regardless of the occasion. I guess because he is a rather simplistic guy and is satisfied by the more “serious” things in life. I imagine most other African dads (or dads in general) are similar to mine in this respect. Anyway over time, with LOTS of trial and error, we’ve been able to figure out gifts my dad will tend to like and so I’ve decided to share some of those ideas.  They may help anyone else who is also struggling to pick a gift for their African dad.

In no particular order;

  1. Sports related gifts (Mainly football)

African dads tend to be the same in their love of football so gifts related to this tend to be winners. A good gift we were able to choose was a stadium tour and this way probably the best gift we got my dad till date.  This may include a football jersey, tickets to a match, there are loads of options for sports related gifts.

  1. Personalised Gifts

Personalised gifts tend to be a winner with everyone no less African dads. I think the key is buying something that will be functional or goes alongside a hobby/interest e.g. a football jersey with his name printed, personalised stationary, a personalised number plate ( if your account can stretch that far).

  1. Clothing items 

These tend to be more practical than “fun” but you can never have enough socks, cufflinks or shirts. Obviously, ensure to choose something your dad would wear/use or you may end up buying him something that he will use to decorate his wardrobe. So if your dad is not the tie wearing type, it may be wise to avoid buying him this. He will say thank you but he will probably never use it.

  1. Sentimental gifts 

Sentimental gifts are always meaningful and are usually highly valued even if they don’t cost that much money. These may include old pictures revamped in a new frame, a painting of a picture or a photograph on a canvas or something that captures or reminds him of a special time. The options are endless and will depend on what your pops likes/needs

  1. The gift of service

It is not a must you have to buy a gift. Acts of service may be just as or even more meaningful as a gift you’ve purchased. Maybe your dad enjoys a special meal that you don’t prepare very often – make that. Maybe your dad has been mentioning he needs his phone fixed or needs some new shoes – do that. Dads are human beings too and acts of service are a thoughtful way to say you care.

  1. Destination gifts 

This is obviously if you can afford it. Dads need to relax too and the spa is a great place to relax. You can book him a spa day or a massage. Some of the stress you give him can be alleviated this way. A holiday/ weekend getaway is also great (if you can afford of course).

  1. Hobby /Personal interest related gifts. 

This will come from studying your father and knowing the things he likes and dislikes. My father is a book lover and so books are always a safe winning option. I also have been able to identify the type of genre of books he will read. This has come from simply studying him and looking at the books he tends to read. This has helped me streamline my gift buying to things I know he will definitely use and find useful.

These are some ideas I was able to come up with. Do you have some more ideas? Share them below

Until next time

Memoirs of a Yoruba Girl

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Things I Hate About Being Late 

This topic right here, it is slyly the story of my life.  I think a lot of people (especially black people) can relate to this. I have racked my brain for a starting point or a particular event that has brought about about such a lax attitude to punctuality and unfortunately I can’t think of one.

This post was inspired by this video I watched on YouTube. I’ve linked it below ⬇

So in no particular order, here are some of the things I hate about being late;

1. Having to prepare a credible argument/excuse for why you are late – this is figured out while still on the way to the destination. Excuses may range from oversleeping, to missing the bus, traffic on the way or another valid excuse.

2. Missing the beginning of the event – especially when it’s an event you have been looking forward to. For me this used to be the praise and worship part of the Sunday church service at my church at university. I LOVE praise and worship and hated missing it (obviously not enough though or I would have been earlier)

3. Sprinting/power walking to catch the train or other mode of transport to get to where you are trying to be – you give it your all to catch the said mode of transport, especially the train/bus that will help you scrap “on time”. If you miss it, there is no hope for even scraping on time.

4. Trying to cram the morning routine into 5/10 minutes – this tends to happen after oversleeping or when the alarm doesn’t go off. The morning routine which would normally take 30/45 minutes is crammed into 5/10 minutes. This is not an easy thing to do and involves aspects of the routine being omitted or being done on the way to the destination.

5. Feeling bad as you give yourself a telling off for being late AGAIN – you always scold yourself that it will not repeat itself again. Until the next time….

6. The knowing stares when you have to walk into an event late – especially when everyone else was on time. In these situations, it is advisable to perch QUIETLY at the back of the room to remain as inconspicuous as possible.

7. Having notoriety among friends for being repeatedly late 

9. Feeling a great sense of achievement when you FINALLY get to a place early or on time – it is possible. Takes a lot of planning but it is definitely possible.

Can you think of any more? Share them below

Until next time 

Memoirs Of A Yoruba Girl 

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Coconut Oil – the BEST make up remover

Coconut oil is the best make up remover I have ever used, ever. It literally dissolves and breaks down the makeup and lifts it off your face. Looking at common make up items a lot of them contain oil and as we all well know water doesn’t dissolve oil, but oil dissolves oil, hence why coconut oil is such a good make up remover. Although coconut oil is my preference, I have used olive oil which worked just as well.
How to use oil to remove your make-up

You will need

  • Coconut oil
  • baby wipes/ make up wipes
  • Skin cleanser

1. Add some oil around your face, you want all of your face to be coated but not dripping with oil

2. Gently work the oil into the face, not forgetting the eyebrows, eyelashes and lips. Rub the oil in circular motions.

3. You should notice the oil on your face should begin to discolour, especially around your eyes (you may look like a panda when you are done 🐼)

4. Wipe off the make up and oil from your face using the wipe. Most (if not all) the makeup on your face should be gone by this point.

5. Proceed to wash your face as normal

This is a technique I use and would recommend to you too.

Try it and let me know how it goes.
Until next time 

Memoirs Of A Yoruba Girl 

Book of the Month (March 2017)

When this book was first released, it was surrounded by a lot of buzz and still is. I was curious about the life and story of Toke Makinwa so I decided to read the story. The book for the month of March 2017 is On Becoming by Toke Makinwa.

 Credit to Linda Ikeji’s blog for the image

Credit to Amazon for this image 

SYNOPSIS

The book is a biography about Toke Makinwa’s life up to this point. She talks about her life experiences from childhood, the tragic loss of her parents and  the breakdown of her very famous and public marriage. She uses her story to share key lessons on life and relationships in a candid way.

The Book’s Description

Toke never envisaged that she would be a successful media personality. She began her journey as a bubbly child but grew into a lonely teenager after the devastating loss of both her parents. For so long after, it seemed as though she would never find herself.
On Becoming is the real Toke Makinwa telling us what it is like to be one of the most talked about celebrities in Nigeria. She reveals the truth behind her 14-year relationship with the man she finally married. A marriage that ended
in an atrocious scandal that nearly brought her to her knees.
In the wake of the peaks and troughs that characterise Toke’s experiences, she now shares her struggle with blinding betrayal, finding forgiveness and drawing strength from her faith in God.

On Becoming is Toke’s journey through pain to victory.

POSITIVES

It was interesting to get to know a bit about the person behind the name. Toke Makinwa is a private person so although she is a socialite, there isn’t that much we know about her apart from the information she has made available about herself. I found the parts she shared about her childhood and about her parent’s very open and honest.

I also appreciated her honesty in sharing the things she did about her marriage relationship because some of the things she shared are things that are very private and people would often want to remain that way.

NEGATIVES

I would have liked to know more about her career journey to success.  As I touched on earlier, Toke Makinwa is someone that is private and only shares things about herself that she wishes to. I feel there would be a lot of useful knowledge to glean from her career story. Although she did touch on it very slightly when she talks about staying in London for some time, she doesn’t really explore this more.

At times, it felt it little like the story jumped from one topic to another, kind of losing us on the way there.

KEY LESSON (S)

  1. Do not ignore the red flags! While reading Toke’s story, it became clear there were behavioural patterns that were repeatedly displayed by Maje.  It would have saved Toke a lot of heart ache had she have paid attention to the flags.
  2. Do unto others as you would have them do to you – from Toke’s account of her experience, it doesn’t appear as though Maje considered Toke’s feelings much. I am apprehensive to completely say that because there are always two sides to a story and we have not heard Maje’s side. It may completely flip the script.
  3. Love is powerful and very addictive – love clearly can make a person do things they wouldn’t have dreamt possible. Toke shares how she started using creams to lighten her skin to make her appeal more to her then spouse
  4. In the multitude of counsellors there is safety – Toke shares that a number of people warned her about her relationship with Maje and went as far as to say even his own sister warned her. There is definitely truth to the scripture in Proverbs 11:14.

MARKS OUT OF TEN – 6/10

Hope you enjoyed my review; do let me know if you read it yourself

Until next time

Memoirs of a Yoruba Girl

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