Kinks Update & More!

My oh my! As usual, it’s been a while since my last post. I must be honest my life is so busy it is unbelievable and sometimes I just get damn too lazy to post! Many a times I come on my blog, start writing a post and it ends up in my draft folder. It’s so bad, I think I have more posts in my draft than I have published. Life happens I guess!

Well, swiftly moving on…. I’ve got two announcements to make.

I got around making my first hair video…yay! It’s been a long time coming and I finally created the time to put this together. The last time I made a video I used Windows Movie Maker and it was not a walk in the park. This time around, I used Picasa to create the movie and I found it pretty easier. Definitely a keeper!

Pictures do have a way of refreshing memories and in making this video, I realized I have come a long way in my natural hair journey albeit less than 2 years. Part of my intent for making the video is to encourage newbies in the natural hair community. A few people have seen this and the feedback made it all worthwhile.

This is to encourage someone out there…the struggle is real but DON’T GIVE UP!

Secondly, I just launched my new BBM Channel which serves as a store where Natural Haircare Products & Accessories can be ordered at affordable prices! Yay! Please spread the word, subscribe & order!

NUBIAN

 

Thank you for stopping by…see you around!

Love & Peace

Nubian Signature

 

 

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Stay natural? Ain’t nobody got time for that!

A couple of years ago, whenever I saw “them” wherever, somewhere at the back of my mind I used to think to myself, “she must be eccentric, she wants to amplify her individuality…well, good for her!” and then just simply walk on by. More often than not, our ideologies on any subject are form based on the earliest influence(s) on us as it relates to that subject matter.

I grew up accepting without questions that what sprouts out of the hair follicles on the scalp of a black woman required intermittent “conjugation” with a relaxer in order to bring forth a socially acceptable and conformed “offspring” – straight tamed hair. I found it an act of deviance when I see a black woman with her hair in its natural state. Our hair isn’t meant to stay in its natural state I’d think and say to myself! Jeez..the depth of my ignorance on this matter was bottomless!!!


Little did I know! I had basked in ignorance for so so long! I was so clueless and didn’t know anything about a part of me that is so integral and true to the very essence of my beauty & being. With people becoming more conscious about their health and taking responsibility for it, I started looking at things I could change in my lifestyle. Going natural wasn’t a “join the movement” thingy for me. I went natural for the following reasons;

  • First of, I realized the chemicals in the relaxers I put on my hair and scalp every now and again have been proven to contain poisonous substances that are harmful to me. (I will be dedicating a post to this in the future)
  • Secondly, there is actually nothing wrong with the curly, coily, kinky strands that grow out of my scalp, contrary to the fundamental understanding I was cocooned in. My natural hair is not defective!
  • Thirdly, curiosity got the better part of me. I became super interested in experiencing my hair in its natural state…seeing that I hadn’t seen my hair in its natural state in over 20 years!


Going forward, I knew I had to address this ignorance about my kind of hair texture if I must go through this journey with minimal frustration. I was totally clueless about how to deal with my hair nonetheless I stayed determined! I was at peace with myself and my decision. Google became my friend and I got engaged to YouTube! My gaze was set on a new horizon so much so I almost suffered a chronic case of information overload!  I came alive and was ready for my journey after 6 months post-relaxer.

I get asked a lot of questions about growing and maintaining the natural hair. Here is my disclaimer – I am no expert neither am I pretending to be one. Everything I would be sharing about going natural and staying natural would be based on my personal experiences and observations.

One of the basics keeping me steady on this journey is accepting that our natural hair is diverse, individual  and unique by nature. I learn something new everyday about my hair in its natural state and I am loving the entire experience. 

I will be sharing my hair journey from hence forth on this blog so it can serve as a reference point and a resource for all the people who keep ask me many questions about my hair regimen and more.

It’s  been 18 months since I last applied a relaxer on my hair and to be honest I do not miss it! Goodness….that “creamy crack” burned the living daylight out of my scalp for years and I thought that was the ONLY way to go. Anyways, now I know better. During the course of my research, I learned new terminologies and jargon peculiar to the natural hair community. “Creamy crack” as used above is a term used to describe or refer to a relaxer.

 The term “Big chop” is another one used to describe the act of getting rid of your perms or simply chopping off your hair to the roots! After I had my last relax in April of 2013, I pretty much knew I was ready. To be honest, that was the second “last relaxer” episode. The first was November of 2012 which I though was going to be the last but it wasn’t! I thought I was ready…apparently not! I was still clueless with what to do and how to handle the new growth beneath my perms so in frustration I succumbed to the dreadful beckoning of the creamy crack

Last September made it a year since I did the big chop and amazingly the growth I have experienced has been phenomenal. In later posts, I will be sharing my hair regimen that keeps evolving…lol!

hairniversary 2

 

Peace & Love!

Nubian Signature

 

 

 

Copyright ©2014 NUBIANWATERS. All Rights Reserved.

 

Meet My New Crush – The Dualers

While running some errands on the high street yesterday after sis-in-law, niece and I treated ourselves to a good time at the health club, my ears started tingling with excitement as his sonorous voice filled the air. Of course I was already walking on sunshine, basking in the lingering euphoria of the just concluded pure indulgence.

We followed the trail of his voice till we found the spot. Based on the style of the music and texture of his voice, I wasn’t expecting to see none other than a black Jamaican bloke doing his thing.

Was I wrong?

I couldn’t believe my eyes when they fell on this eye candy! I quickly whipped out my phone to record a little bit of his busking for as long as the memory on my phone permitted. 🙂

Listen for yourself and do tell what you think… I do apologize in advance for the background chatter! 🙂

 

Needless to say, the rest of the evening was spent surfing Youtube, listening to their numerous performances. We love him already and can’t wait to see him in concert!

-NW

Copyright ©2014 NUBIANWATERS. All Rights Reserved.

Day Seven: Give and Take

—–THE DIALOGUE—–

Venus: I don’t understand the basis for your fury. You can’t demand it darling, you know better…it’s earned!

Mars: Look, I don’t explain myself when I have done nothing wrong!

Venus: I am not asking you to explain yourself, let your actions do the talking for goodness sake!

Mars: I’ve been friends with her before they met. He should understand that!

Venus: You’re missing the point still. Friendship is no excuse. You are unscrupulously over-stepping boundaries! Their boundaries!

Mars: How dare him ask me to leave his wife alone? The message was meant for her. She’s my friend!

Venus: …And he is her husband!!!

Mars: Bollocks!!!

Venus: My point exactly!

 

-NW

Copyright © 2014 NUBIANWATERS. All Rights Reserved

 

Writing 101: Day Seven: Give and Take

“Write a post based on the contrast between two things — whether people, objects, emotions, places, or something else.

Today’s twist: write your post in the form of a dialogue. You can create a strong opposition between the two speakers — a lovers’ quarrel or a fierce political debate, for example. Or you could aim to highlight the difference in tone and style between the two different speakers — your call!

 

Happy New You!

Happy New Year!!!

2013 is just about 3 weeks old therefore it is still fairly new and my greeting is still appropriate…kind of…hehehe! 😀

January is always a very challenging month for a lot of people in many ways. It’s like an anti-climax to the yuletide rush. Reality shock hits like thunderbolt and all too sudden, the wallets become so hard to reach for. We tend to splurge on many things over Christmas without batting an eyelid only for us to get smacked right in the face with the realities of the choices we made over the holiday season – the consequences! *sigh*

I belong to the school of thought that believes in the gift of indulgence during the Christmas season. It’s the season to dig into every lovely meal plated before you without succumbing to guilt trips in any form, shape or size. Last Christmas was not an exception for me. I mean, I ditched every rule in my book about diet & healthy living and thoroughly appeased my belly.  Of course, I was fully aware of the consequences but I couldn’t care less…needed to savour the moments!

The first week in January was a struggle. My eating habit was sort of everywhere. I simply found it difficult making the switch from yuletide binge eating to healthy eating. By the end of that week, I knew something drastic had to be done else… Apart from a conscious decision to put an abrupt stop to the compulsive junk-eating habit I acquired over the holidays, I reached for one of my favourite smoothies which I have used over the years to recondition my body whenever I needed to get back on track with my eating lifestyle. Starting the year on a pleasant note, I have decided to share the recipe…it may be of use to someone else.

Here we go…

I got this recipe from my brother who is a health-freak by the way. He calls it “Green Goddess”, please don’t ask me why because I don’t know either. The good thing is, the ingredients needed for this smoothie are things you can get from your local fruit & vegetable store without much hassle.

“GREEN GODDESS” SMOOTHIE RECIPE

The things you’ll need:

2 medium size green apples

2 medium size kiwi fruit (peeled)

1 cup of seedless green grapes

2 bananas

1 large size English pear

2 medium size oranges ( bits only )

100g fresh Kale leaves or fresh Pumpkin leaves. (uncooked)

1.5 cups of Soy Milk or Rice Milk or Skimmed Milk or Semi-Skimmed Milk

Green goddess smoothie tray.

All the works!

NOTE:

** Pumpkin leaves are also called “Ugu”. It is a perfect substitute for Kale in this part of the world where Kale aren’t grown or found. Pumpkin leaves are rich in minerals & vitamins and contain anti-oxidants that help slow down the ageing process in our bodies.

**No full cream milk please! Remember, we are trying to keep it as healthy as possible.

**I forgot to add the Pear to the tray before taking the photo so I edited the picture my way 😀

The entire process is pretty basic;

– Wash each item thoroughly under running water especially the pumpkin leaves to avoid a sandy experience

– Add vinegar to a large bowl of  clean water and give them a final rinse. (I’d normally use apple cider vinegar)

– Put the fruits in a food processor/blender/Liquidizer in this order to facilitate easy blending: Orange bits, Kiwi, Grapes, Bananas, Apple, Pear, Pumpkin/Kale leaves & Milk

Orange & Kiwi

Orange bits & Kiwi slices

Orange bits, Kiwi slices & Seedless grapes

Orange bits, Kiwi slices & Seedless grapes

Orange bits, Kiwi slices, Seedless grapes, bananas, apples & pears.

Orange bits, Kiwi slices, Seedless grapes, bananas, apples & pears.

Add fresh & tender pumpkin leaves

Add fresh & tender pumpkin leaves

All layered up

All layered up

Add Milk

Add Milk

Ready to blend

Ready to blend

– Cover the blender properly and blend till you achieve a smoothie consistency.

End Result

End Result

Tada!!! All done!

I must say, this is a meal in its own right and you can have it as breakfast with 1 or 2 boiled eggs. I normally portion this into 5 clear glasses, seal tightly with cling film (as shown above) to reduce oxidation and refrigerate immediately. As long as power supply is steady, it preserves well in the fridge. All I do every morning before heading out to work is to grab a glass and I’m good to go. Craving water while having  this smoothie is perfectly normal so I’d advice you have a glass of water nearby.  Remember, the less you process your meals, the better for you.

So, this is to you.. wishing you a healthy 2013!

Love,

NW.

Click here for more health facts on pumpkin leaves.

Mr and Mrs Series: What Lies Beneath 2

The time was 9:35pm when Abeke waltzed into the darkness of the apartment with some Thai takeaway in her hands as she softly hummed some happy tunes. That was the brightest I had seen her in days. She made no attempt to switch on the light; the beaming rays from the flat screen TV on the wall was enough for her to navigate the room.

“I got you some Thai, one of your favourites actually”, she said casually as she walked pass me into the kitchenette.

“Thanks! I’ll have it later”, I replied calmly though my heart was racing like crazy.

My thought processes and the many flashbacks had successfully activated mode paranoid in me. “She may have poisoned it”, I thought but quickly dispelled the notion. Abeke couldn’t be that mean and she wouldn’t allow her emotions get the better part of her.  I kept my gaze on the TV though my inner eyes were on her just to be on guard for any surprises. I was uneasy to say  the least. She settled herself into one of the two neon red high stools at the breakfast bar and ate her portion quietly. A recent copy of Grazia magazine lay on the counter, she reached for it and flipped aimlessly through the pages as she finished the last bits of her meal.

I heaved a sigh of relief when she announced she was retiring for the night. “Today must be my lucky day” I thought to myself, “but come to think of it, this wife of mine is acting rather normal. Hmmm, wait a minute, probably she only took a walk and never met up with Yvette. I mean,…the gravity of those  revelations could never leave any relatively sane woman calm. Abeke knows nothing…thank goodness!”. No sooner had she disappeared behind the bedroom door than the starved man in me dived into the awaiting pack of Thai takeaway. It took a few mouthfuls to realise how famished I was. I finished the meal, switched off the TV and crept into bed next to Abeke who was soundly asleep by this time.

Groggily I woke at 8:15AM the next morning as waves of migraine rippled through the left half of my face. My body felt like one that had been struck by a ‘molue’. Abeke was nowhere to be found. On her side of the bed was a note which read:

“Meet me in Lagos!”

“What!”, was all I could summon from my vocal reserve. With blurry eyes I looked around and indeed her travel suitcases were gone. Alas, my headache compounded instantly. Right there and then, the unnerving quiet of hers the previous night made perfect sense. “Abeke met with Yvette…wow!”, I thought. I left my hurting head buried in my palms as I sat at the foot of the bed for what seemed like an eternity, trying to make sense of Abeke’s action and the possible upcoming drama that awaited me in Lagos. Yvette’s revelations would seem minute however if she ever found out my other secret.

The shrill chimes of the doorbell interrupted my musings. I made my way out of the bedroom into the living space to answer it. Whoever it was at the door impatiently buzzed again leaving the finger permanently on the button; this agitated my migraine some more. On opening the door, Yvette brushed me aside as she walked right into the apartment.

“Where is the Mrs.?”, she queried sarcastically as she sat in the lone accent chair by the window.

“Errmm…she’s gone back to Lagos”, I managed to utter in my state of shock.

By this time, my head was spinning in orbits. She broke a crooked smile as she rummaged her handbag for her mobile phone. She punched in some numbers and dialled. The conversation lasted 2 seconds as she said into the receiver “It’s on”. I tried to wonder what that meant but didn’t have to for long. The front door of the apartment burst open and 2 hefty young men of Caribbean descent barged in. One of them had long dreadlocks and the other, a shiny bald head. They manned the door like prison guards. Yvette crossed her legs and motioned me to take a seat. Unsure of what was about to ensue, I complied like a sheep being led to the slaughter for the presence of the men towering over me gave me major concerns.

“I learnt you came with an impressive wallet to splurge on the high street…hmmm! Well…I am your high street now. Go bring the money!”, she ordered. I stood for a minute, wondering how deep her conversation with Abeke got when she barked at me,  “Get it right away…and I know the exact amount so don’t mess about with me.” Without a second thought I headed for the bedroom, took out the brown manila envelope that housed the £10,000 I had set aside for shopping from my suitcase and returned to the living room. I had no intention of testing the powers of Yvette’s touts.

To be honest, she wasn’t out of line with her demands; I never gave her a dime since the child was born. She ripped the loaded envelope out of my grip, turned her back on myself and her goons and quickly counted the crispy reddish £50 notes. As she turned around, she looked at me sternly, nodded like an Agama lizard before exiting the apartment with her goons like gangsters. Yvette’s drama was the least of my worries.

Source: Google Images

Abeke leaving for Lagos ahead of me was my primary concern. Seeing that her flight wouldn’t leave until 11:30AM, I called her cell phone severally but she refused to answer it. Without wasting any more time, I called the ticketing office and changed my departure to the evening of the same day. I got to Lagos the next morning and boarded a yellow taxi home; Bala’s official phone was unreachable. Our driver was usually very reliable; had the drama started already?

I got to the gate of our home about 8 O’clock in the morning and the gate-man welcomed me with fear and anxiety in his eyes. I reached for my keys and unlocked the front door. As I wheeled my suitcases into the anteroom, I sensed some unusual presence in the house. Seeing it was dead quite, I proceeded into the living room. On opening door, down on her knees was Mrs Johnson, Abeke’s mum, with both hands up in the air as she rubbed both palms against each other pleading to someone I couldn’t see. The look in her eyes was that of great fear and terror. I dropped my suitcases and rushed to her side as I called out her pet name to ask what the matter was.

I was oblivious of the fact that behind the door stood Chief Johnson with a double barrel shotgun in his hands. A shot rang out and I felt metal pierce my kneecap sharply as I crashed haplessly on the marble floor. Before I could take in all that was going on, Abeke was standing over me, her face emotionless. She stooped to my level and dug her teeth firmly into my shoulder for what seemed like forever then she passed out. I wriggled in pain. Mrs Johnson pitched her cry for mercy and forgiveness. It was then I realised we’ve been found out; our secret affair had been ongoing for 7 years! Chief Johnson corked  the shotgun once more; another shot rang out as her screams filtered to me from what seemed like a million miles away.

Mr and Mrs Series: No.9 Commotion Street – So Long…Farewell!

The discordant choruses of Mrs Okafor’s cockerels at 5.30 each dawn has been my morning alarm for many years. As a matter of fact, the chief rooster led its choir of three cockerels and five hens of assorted feathers from the outer ledge of our rotting bedroom window every waking morning. I reached for my mobile phone to check what time of the day it was seeing the sun’s rays were beginning to spill into the room through the flimsy dayblind-cum-curtains screening the room from prying eyes. I took a second look at the screen of my mobile phone to confirm it was 6:50AM. Impossible!!! In as much as I found the morning crowing & clucking of the roosters annoying, they served me well. The rains last night were heavy and must have left the chickens too cold and lazy for their morning routine, I thought.

Gently, I rested my head again on my flat pillow to gather my thoughts as I rolled over to check on Deolu. He curled up like a baby underneath that sheet of old London wax fabric his mother gave me as a wedding present seven years ago; his face was expressionless. For a moment, I held my gaze on him as images of the open show of madness that happened two nights before reeled through my mind. Was I glad Deolu had finally come to his senses? Oh yes I was!  As I basked in the euphoria of relocating, he suddenly twitched, and then he twitched some more. He began to get restless under the sheet as his face wrinkled up with tension. I could tell he was having a nightmare again and whatever horrible ‘thing’ he was seeing must be the face of Mrs. Okafor. Interrupting his nightmare this time was the last thing on my mind as mischief got the better part of me. After all, I am yet to hear of anyone dying of nightmares.

Like one being stifled, he muttered in what seemed like distant whispers, “drop it, stop it, don’t hit me, don’t hit me”.  Compassion filled my heart for him though for some weird reasons, I was enjoying every moment of this. I buried my mouth in my palms to muffle my chuckles; I’d lost control over them. I thought to myself, this ‘punishment’ should suffice for his default on our ‘open-book’ policy. I caressed his right shoulder as I softly called him out of his nightmare; tiny beads of sweat masked his forehead as he fluttered his eyelids, waking to his environs. With a startling look he said to me, “Good morning, Caro!”. I smiled at him, wiping sweat beads off his brows and said, “Morning my darling, you must have had a nightmare again”, trying hard to disguise my mischievous smile. As soon as he realized what day it was, he sprung out of bed with a different swag.

Source: Google Images

It was Saturday, the D-day had finally come. Deolu, true to his words, had secured a 3-bedroom apartment  in a nicer part of town. The look on his face the evening he walked in dangling the keys to our soon-to-be new home was priceless. I was ecstatic! All of our belongings were already boxed up; I spent all my waking hours the previous day seeing to that while Deolu was out and the kids were away at school. Another quick glance at my mobile phone and the time was 7:15 AM. We didn’t have the luxury of time; the moving van was scheduled to arrive at 10:00AM. Speedily, I got the children ready and fed the family cold cereal for breakfast. There was no way I could have cooked that morning; the cooking range had been boxed up as well. The prospect of relocation had left the kids in the land of Funtopia, you could tell they were on a different high. All things in order!

Without warning, the shrill voice of Mrs. Okafor filtered in from the rear of the apartment leaving Deolu and I startled. We stopped in our tracks , straining to make some sense out of her incessant hubbub; apparently ‘cool and the gang’ had been stolen – all three cockerels, five hens and the notorious chief rooster! Unfortunately for one of the culprits, Mrs. Okafor had managed to trail his path; a path that led her to Morufu’s side of the neighbourhood. Things weren’t about to get pretty. Clearly evident, Deolu couldn’t be bothered to broker peace that morning; he continued with the sealing of the remaining few boxes as he said to me,  “Caro, are you sure we have everything packed? The van is almost here”. The time now was 9:45 AM.

As usual, the noise grew louder and drew nearer. I looked over at Deolu and all I could see was his vehemence; he was so determined not to get involved.  The expected truck arrived on time, pulling up right in the middle of the tumult. Deolu motioned and we started loading the truck. Nathan, Uncle Bayo’s son had arrived that morning to help with the moving so Deolu instructed him to stand guard by the truck. “You know we can’t afford to be careless with our belongings as we take them into the truck with all this confusion going on outside. Those hoodlums could seize the opportunity to loot us o, so be on the lookout!”. “You are very right, sir”,  Nathan replied.

I, on the other hand, was not finding the latest developments funny at all. I had spent the last few days perfecting my farewell speeches and song. I had even taken the liberty to change the lyrics of the song “So Long, Farewell” from the movie “Sound of Music” to suit my farewell symphony. Determined not to let Mrs. Okafor ruin my happy moment, I began to sing in the most sonorous voice I could muster:

♫ ♫”So long, farewell

The Palmers say goodbye

We’re glad to go and leave this awful sight

Pam-Parara-tarara-ta-tara; Pam-parara-tararaaaaaaa!” ♫ ♫

 “Confirmed…you’re a nutter, Caro”, Deolu managed to utter as he nearly choked on his own giggles, walking off into the kitchen to grab the rest of our things. No sooner had he stepped into the Kitchen did I hear his yell of horror, “Caro! Caro!! Come, quickly”. I wondered what it was this time. As I stepped into the kitchen, I met Deolu transfixed with his index finger pointed at something behind the boxed cooking range. On taking a closer look, behold, it was the chief rooster lying half dead right there on my kitchen floor; I wondered how it got there! By this time, the noise was at our door step and with what sounded like missiles exploding, Mrs. Okafor’s fists rattled the half-opened door of our apartment.

 “Where is my chicken o! Mrs. Palmer, bring out my chicken!! You bunch of rogues, sly conniving maggots – hell-bent on ruining me in this neighbourhood…Come out now with my chicken o!!! “, shouted Mrs. Okafor. Apparently, in their haste, one of the culprits had shoved the chief rooster into our kitchen through the steel bars on the window, breaking its neck in the process. Knowing that drama was about to ensue, I took the children into the emptied bedroom instructing them not to move an inch then quickly returned to join Deolu in the living room.

By the time I got there, he was already half way through the front door with Mrs. Okafor speedily inching away from him. In his right hand was the chief rooster and in his left, a glistening carving knife. Just as I had imagined David swinging his sling in the face of Goliath, so was my husband swinging the chief rooster in the face of Mrs. Okafor whilst he jabbed the knife into the airspace between him and her repeatedly, closing in on her. As bewildered as the sight left me, I was confident Deolu had this under control this time around for he had given me the winks before he did the unimaginable.

Unrehearsed, Deolu broke into a crazy dance like an idol worshiper before his deity; his every move intensifying as he chanted gibberish alongside. He beckoned at his ‘sworn enemy’ to come closer if she dared and he broke short evil smiles at the onlookers nearby. Suddenly, he charged at the crowd with his weapons in both hands; none needed forewarning seeing Mr. Palmer was resolved on warring. With the speed of light the crowd dispersed, each one running to seek sure refuge. What has come over Mr. Palmer was the question many asked from their hiding. I could see Mrs. Okafor from where I stood, the look on her face was priceless. Reason had prevailed in her case for she could tell Mr. Palmer meant mad business.

Deolu stood watch with both weapons still in his grips as we moved the last bits and bobs into the waiting truck. So much for farewell speeches; what an insane way to draw the final curtains on our theatrical seven years in this neighbourhood. In what seemed like an endless berserk moment, we  were ready to leave for good. Unceremoniously, Deolu tossed the chief rooster at the feet of its owner who was still rooted in the same spot, gobsmacked.  We cramped ourselves into his old Nissan sedan car and with the truck on our tail, off we drove into our new reality!  

So long..farewell, number 9 Commotion Street!

Hello posh neighbourhood…or so I thought…

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