Moss Green Tree, or the Light Coming through

How can you change perspectives?

This is always the hardest to do when moments in a day pile up, one after another, bogging down your original thoughts, until you can’t remember how the day started and what you wanted to do.  I envy the list-making people, or the schedule-following crowd.  The planner-manics who keep their phones full of alarms, and notes on what should happen each day.

This writer seeks the deity of works-in-progress.  I guess the first step, is simply posting this…and knowing what comes next.  Looks like things are looking up.

Perspective.

Day 6 – Laughing until my stomach hurts

Funny ha-ha
Do you consider yourself funny? What role does humor play
in your life? Who’s the funniest person you know?

6- Laughing  until my stomach hurts

When was the last time you laughed until you felt you’ll pee your pants?

laughing out loudThink about it.  Really stop and remember that moment, and why you laughed until your stomach hurt and tears filled your eyes.  Laughter is the best medicine in any situation, yet it is so rare.  Sure, you can chuckle or give a small laugh when you think something is amusing.  However, honest to goodness, laugh-out-loud laughing is precious.  An awesome laugh is spontaneous and when it happens, gosh-darn, I fall in love with the person who made me laugh that way.  Why?  Coz, I remember that laugh for days, weeks, hell even months, because it was just so good laughing that way.

The funniest person I know is a cousin I consider our big brother.  I’ll name him J.  J is one of those guys who can get you to laugh until you pee your pants.  I love it when he visits us because he always has the best stories to tell.  He’s lively and genuine.  I appreciate him because he has seen my family go through some tough times, and strange times, and no matter the situation, he always manages to make you feel like it will be okay.  I have had some amazing laughs thanks to J, so this post is my small shout-out to him.

Geez, I think it is important to laugh often.  If you’re not genuinely laughing, find a cat video if you have to and laugh.  #Be happy.   

***

100 days Writing AdventureDay 6 – On the importance of a good laugh….our society these days is so serious, unforgiving, and downright mean at times.  We need to focus on the smiles, and laughs…the genuine kind.

Day 5 : I Can’t Believe I Said that!

5 – Moments that leave you like “I can’t believe I said that!”

75541-so-embarrassedThere are times when conversations replay in the head days later and embarrassment hits like a ton of bricks.  Of course, if you have never had these moments, then you are super confident.  Plenty of these flashbacks happen when you least expect it.  When it happens to me, I just laugh and people sitting next to me think I’ve gone crazy.

For this challenge, my flashback conversation is not a conversation but a scenario.  Excitement often takes over during group activities.  I had the privilege of finding myself in a group setting lately.  I always think, ‘wow, we could do so well with this.’  My imagination can start scenarios and complete them in a minute, the end result, perfect.  I often forget imagination is often not in sync with reality.  At a meeting with this group of people, we came up with an activity of sorts.  Everyone got an individual’s number and you had to call your partner between meetings.  Sort of like a ‘big brother-small brother thing‘ I thought it was a fabulous idea. The excitement was high, being one of the people advocating for this partnership project, I was all about getting to know your partner.

“Call your partner, get to know them,” I’d say every time we met in the group setting.

Weeks later, I meet up with a few people in the group and I ask how the partnership thing is going.

“Are you guys calling each other, maybe even meeting?”

A scoff came in answer and to my eternal shock, I find out a chunk of people in the group don’t want to participate in the project.  The chunk is greater than half, almost three-quarters….wow! I was tooting a horn no one wanted to hear. Standing in this same group weeks later after this discovery, I had nothing to say…cheeks flaming…nothing came to mind.

When I think about it now, it’s probably not a moment to be embarrassed about, but that I completely misunderstood the group vibe with this activity hits me at odds time.

100 days Writing AdventureDay 5 – Forced to dig deep and talk about moments I would prefer to forget. These challenges are turning into therapy.  Still interesting to continue…

 

Day 4 – Nostalgic Adventures

Leave a Post-it note in a secret place. One sentence only. What do you say? How does the placement affect the message?

Day 4 – Nostalgic Adventures

When I was young, my family would visit my maternal grandmother every holiday.  My siblings and I would spend one whole week running down luscious green hills, getting thoroughly muddy, and in the evening, grandma would entertain us all.  It was a carefree time, we all loved how close we were then.  This closeness dissipated with time though: growing up pulled us apart as distances increased.  My grandma passed away, and the magic of visiting her highlands seemed to disappear.

My Nephew photo bombed us from the back ^_^
My Nephew photo bombed us from the back ^_^

This weekend, we went back there, and it was amazing looking at that place now.  Thelush places hills are still as beautiful as I remember, flowing straight down to a gorgeous river.  I went walking with my nephews and  nieces, we had a good time running up and down, enjoying ourselves. Almost like old times.   So, my post-it-note: I would leave it in that place.  It would read, #NeverForgetOurDaysHere.

 

100 days Writing AdventureDay 4 – This was all fun and games, loved every minute of it.

 

Day 3 – Featured Bananas

 The Challenge today is: 

If I could permanently ban a word from general usage, which one would it be and why?

3 – Featured Bananas

My word would be the phrase, ‘I can’t.’

This phrase is the source of unhappiness, discontent, anger, discouragement, hate, and all negative scenarios that come to mind.  When people say ‘I can’t’, they block the way to what can happen.  A lot of time is wasted on this phrase, so a future, and a present without the word ‘I can’t’, would lead to wondrous possibilities.

The bananas in the picture are a counter to this phrase and challenge.  Since I told someone I can’t feature bananas on a writing blog.  Voila!  Here is a bunch of bananas hanging on string, and I ate two of them on the way home after taking this picture.

pics 5 124

***

100 days Writing AdventureMy Day 3 is task-oriented, and required an opinion and an action. I enjoyed some bananas thanks to Day 3.  May you have a wonderful weekend ahead!

 

Words: Conversation: Inspiration

2 – Words: Conversation: Inspiration

masterclassMy sister woke me at the crack of dawn today.  I don’t do well with mornings without coffee.  This determined fire cracker got me out of bed, dressed, and out the door…all these without a cup of coffee.  I give her props for the feat.  I’m incredibly unsociable without coffee.  The world always seems like a serious battle zone, and everyone talking is the enemy racing it at me with battle axes, arrows, swords and machetes.  I was a disgruntled zombie.  My focus only on what I have to do to get to point B, and anything extra turned into an annoyance.

We were heading to a finance master class my sister runs, the venue today was along Ngong Rd.  The matatu driver was plugged to the loudest reggae music I’ve heard yet.  The treble in that joint turned into a small torture device.  I was a tad disoriented when we arrived at our destination.

Of course, my little task master knows me well.  We ended up in the lovely Cakes & Muffins restaurant along Ngong road.  Minutes later, I got my hit of house coffee, and the world righted.  I’m starting to think coffee can be used as a weapon against me.

The master class started an hour later than we had planned and in the short span of time it ran, the ladies in attendance turned into my inspiration.  Women in business inspire me on most days.  These ladies were no exception.  Starting a small business is often the most difficult task one can take up.  The challenges always out weigh the merits, but meeting these group of ladies, the waking up was worth it.

The talk on managing cash flow ensued.  You would think the topic would be enough to get them sleeping, but everyone was wide-eyed, and taking notes.  Then, the conversation started, and I got a first class seat to women facing real struggles in their businesses.  The baking industry has grown in Kenya.  Breaking into the industry requires more than bravery.  Contenders face stiff competition from fellow bakers, and consumers who are well educated in the type of products they want.  Despite the challenges, these ladies are focused, and determined to keep going despite these struggles.

When the class was over, one of the ladies comes up and says, “Thank you, so much.  Thank you for doing this, it keeps us going.”

I smiled at my sister, because she’s the determined firecracker who made this day worth it for a half-dozen women, and there is nothing more powerful than that for inspiration.

***

*matatu – public PSV

100 days Writing AdventureDay 2, the goal today was to hit 400 words talking about what happened during my day.  I had a good time meeting the ladies today at the masterclass, and their stories truly made me smile. Fighting!

 

Sweet Six O’clock Sleep

1 – The Great Robbery of Sweet Six O’clock Sleep

Suki
Suki

A bird whistles in the distance, melodious beauty cuts through the heavy veil of sleep.  Senses alert, the freezer in the living room hums to life.  A series of mechanical whirls fill the silence of the house.  They said the thing would be silent that first day at the showroom.  The humming continues, the sound low but hardly silent…score for the sales man.  The humming cuts off five minutes later, the silence is surprising…welcome.  Once again, the bird living in the tree right outside the house whistles…or was he still whistling?

Sleep beckons, that sweet delicious wave of sleep only found at six in the morning.  A glance at the clock—that square-faced, faux-gold piece that is now twenty-five years old, still faithfully counting away the minutes— shows that it’s twenty-five minutes until six-thirty.  Eyes close, stubborn will clings to the comfort of warm blankets.  Nose buried in the wool-rich blankets, fingers clutching tight to the edges, contentment fills as once again I’m caught in the magical world between awake and dreams.

A heavy weight drops on my legs, and a sigh escapes.  Four paws trail a massage up my back, and loud purring fills the quiet.  Suki, the cat, is awake…

When the purring doesn’t work, she proceeds to dig her paws into the blankets.

Step, step, dig, dig…Suki’s purring volume increases…wake up, wake up.

Suki steps a rhythm on my back.

I hold the blankets closer.  A peek at the clock, and it’s only six fifteen…not time yet.  Ignoring Suki’s vicious alarm clock, I close my eyes and desperately cling to that sweet sleep.  How was that dream going again…?

Ah yes—

A heavy weight drops on my head, enough to grab me away from sweet bliss.  I push the covers away and raise my head slightly.  Suki sits on the floor, her dark irises round and large in the morning light.  Her gaze is expectant.  She thinks she’s won with her hit and run…I smirk.

My head finds the pillow again, this time I turn away from her, and make sure to cover my head well with the blankets.  The faithful clock says it is six twenty-five.  I’m getting my five minutes in.

My nose is cold.  The temperatures are their usual low this early in August.  The thought of a shower is not appealing.  Closing my eyes, I seek that delicious sleep again…five minutes and then I will wake up.

Two minutes in, the blankets are warm again…the dreams right on the fringe.

Suki jumps on me, again.  Her purr is soothing, her weight on my arm friendly.  She lulls me further into sleep…and then, she’s pawing at the blankets covering my head.  Her claws sink into the heavy blanket and the tips meet skin, I sit up in a hurry and she jumps off fast.

She sits on the floor…smirking at me.

My blankets are thrown aside, the warmth sucked away by the frigid room temperature.  There’s no getting that back now. Damn minx has won this round.

I glance at the clock and scowl, Suki won at six twenty-seven.  She meows, the sound of it urgent.  She’s hungry and wants food, now.  I feel robbed of three delicious minutes of sleep.  Giving a loud yawn in answer, I get up and chuckle when Suki leads the way to the kitchen.

***

100 days Writing AdventureThis is Day One of the writing challenge…came up with this in fifteen minutes.  I think it went ok.  Will see how it goes tomorrow. ^_^

Pottery – Art for Sustenance

Adventures in Nairobi led me to a wonderful community center in Eastleigh that does pottery to help fund their projects and support the less privileged.  The Eastleigh Community Center has a full-fledged Pottery Workshop that produces gorgeous pottery pieces they sell to support the center.

pottery1

We got the chance to walk through the pottery shop where they sell their finished products.  Of course, the motto was walk with care.  I kept praying my clumsiness would stay put, the shelves were so gorgeously full of delicate art.  The staff was busy packing for an exhibition, so I only got one shot of the packed shelves.  I’m told you can visit the Center if you would like to view the pottery before you purchase.

pottery2

More pottery on shelves…these jugs remind me of the ones I see in old Egyptian paintings, or Greek art. Imagine yourself filling your jug with water, or milk, and placing it on the work table.  So beautiful….get one here.

Pottery8

The picture above is a collection of mugs in the process of creation, before they go back in to the kiln for another burn.

pottery3

This little plant pot absolutely stole my heart.  Yes, part of it is the Biscuit written on the side, but it is just so cute, I want one!

pottery5

Outside the Eastleigh Community Center offices is a line of potted plants that make me want to go back to their shop and purchase a few for our compound.

The Eastleigh Community Center displays their pottery work at different expos around Nairobi.  You might run into them at Yaya Center, the Maasai Market, or at the Sarit Center Expos…and many other trade shows.

Learn more about this industrious Project

Website : PCEA Eastleigh Community Center

Live this New Year

new yearHappy New Year!

As  always, resolutions are flying around me, from friends and family, I sincerely hope they are met.  I love a new year.  It always feels like a time to leave the old behind and embrace the new.  New things, ideas and meet new people.  It’s also a time to change the view on old things, old ideas and old relationships.

This writer wishes all her readers the best of the best this year.  And, unmovable resolve in getting those resolutions done.  Meet new people, create inspiring new ideas, try new things, visit new places…go to old places and see them like new…..Live.

Cheers to an adventure filled 2016!