Purple Reign

I was a huge Prince fan while growing up. Not as huge a fan as my sister – but still… Pretty big. 

I was lucky enough to see him in concert 3 or 4 times. That man, as small as he was – was electrifying on stage.

When I heard the news yesterday, I was in denial. It couldn’t be him. How was it possible? Once the TV was working again (don’t ask), I glued myself to CNN. Crying.

This morning I watched a few of his videos on YouTube and I got teary again.

This afternoon, after the children’s swimming lesson, we all piled into the car. The iPod came on and Billie Jean was playing. Vins said, “It’s Michael Jackson!” I recently introduced him to the wonder of MJ (another legend gone too soon).

I told him he was right. And said, “But we’re going to listen to Prince now. He was as wonderful as Michael, but he sadly died yesterday.”

We listened to When Doves Cry in silence for a few moments and then Vins said, “You know, mama… He’s died. But his music hasn’t.”

He was so right. And I started crying again. 

Santa’s Late Delivery (Updated)

After the debacle of our Mall for Africa experience, I decided to use them again.

I mean, what’s a girl to do when she needs some retail therapy?

Anyway – I’ll report on that experience when my order actually arrives (if it ever does?)!

So, back to the point – after receiving our three missing items – from a third party couple (it’s just insane, isn’t it?), I emailed Mall for Africa to complain.

I received a reply from them within hours.

Dear

Thank you for your mail.

Many apologies for this inconveniences this may have caused you.

The logistics Team where following up on your order to retrieve it when apparently the customer that received the order has returned them to you.

Please accept our sincere apologies for this again as it was not intentional and will not happen again.

Thank you for choosing MallforAfrica.

Sincerely,
MallforAfrica

I copied and pasted the email – so that is exactly how it was written. My first thought was, ‘Where’s my red pen?’ My second thought was, ‘They’ve not actually explained anything.’ And my third thought was, ‘Ugh. Whatever.’
Anyway, so that’s that.

Santa’s Late Delivery

Last Christmas we ordered all the children’s presents from Amazon (US) through the Mall for Africa app. We’d never used it before and decided it was more cost effective to do that than buy all the gifts here.

The app was relatively easy to use, I guess. It did annoy me that I could only order a maximum of 15 items (currently reduced to 10) from the Amazon store – but I suppose there’s a reason for that!

Anyway, so we placed our order at the beginning of December – around the 6th, I think. And they say they’ll deliver between ten to fifteen business days. Of course I then started worrying about the fact that they may not arrive by Christmas (and what I would do if they didn’t).

I left for Bali on the 14th, and by the 18th the packages started arriving. Hooray! Relief!

I got back on the 23rd and started opening them and wrapping. The boxes weren’t in good condition – but at least they’d arrived. Then I realised that 3 items were missing.

A cookie jar shape sorter thing for Booni, a farm animal book for Booni and a Melissa & Doug magnetic calendar for Vins. I figured it would arrive at some point.

On January 6th I emailed Mall for Africa about these items and was told (on January 13th) that they were en route. Great!

On March 14th (I kind of forgot in between) I emailed them again. I skipped the pleasantries and asked them to either send the items, or refund me. The reply they sent (the following day) asked for a list of the items I hadn’t received yet, as their database said the order was complete.

I replied with a list of the 3 items and didn’t hear from them again. And again, I forgot (oops).

On Wednesday this week (March 30th), LagosDad came home from work and said a lady had called him. She and her husband had received a parcel from Mall for Africa – one they weren’t expecting – and when they opened it, they found our contact details.

Luckily for us – they actually called and we arranged to collect the items from them at a nearby location.

Vins was with me when I went to collect it and I told him that Santa had delivered the presents to the wrong home. And that those people were kind enough to call us and let us know.

I’d like to use Mall for Africa regularly – whenever I need a bit of retail therapy (all the time) or when we need stuff for the kids (all the time) – but is this a risk worth taking? Yes, they sent the items late. But HOW do you send them to the wrong address? When I collected the box yesterday, LagosDad’s name and our delivery address was VERY clear on the box! Do they not have some sort of tracking system? We were very lucky that this couple contacted us. What if we’re not so lucky next time?

 

(Almost) Time for a Holiday

I’m so knackered.

I wake up and count how many hours there are until I can go back to sleep again! And, I’ll have you know, that afternoon naps are a thing of the past (unfortunately).

At least Easter Break is happening from next Thursday – Hurrah! And I’m going to Dubai – Hurrah! Without children and LagosDad – Hurrah (kind of)!

Let me give you some back story on this…

So… one of my BFFs (H) has a big milestone birthday coming up at the end of May and she’s been talking about getting away for a girly weekend to celebrate. I can’t get away in May and she didn’t want to take time off work, so we decided to go over Easter weekend.

The next step was deciding where to go – Zanzibar? Istanbul? London? Paris? We both knew we wanted to shop a bit lot. Eat a lot. Chill a bit. We knew it was only for about four days, so nowhere too far away. Where would be best?

H decided on Dubai. Nooooo! How was I supposed to tell my parents that I was coming to Dubai for four days, not staying with them and not bringing their grandchildren? I tried to convince her to go to other places – but visas (expense of) were an issue and H just wasn’t having any of it. She had decided on Dubai. LagosDad, very sensibly, said that it was H’s birthday and that I had to go along with what she wanted!

I thought about taking the kids – leaving them with my parents for four days (with the nanny too) and then after H went back to Lagos, I’d move in with my parents. But it really wasn’t worth it. Easter break is only a week long and it was too much money to spend for four of us for only a week.

I thought about how to bring this up with my mum. As it turns out, I needn’t have worried so much because she wasn’t going to be there anyway! While I’m disappointed that I won’t see her, I won’t feel so guilty about not taking the children.

So, after all that, H and I leave next Thursday. S (another friend) will already be there and we’re going to spend four days in Dubai – shopping (first and foremost), eating (can’t wait to go to McDonalds), drinking excessively (maybe only on the first night, as we’re getting old now and our hangovers last about three days) and chilling (if we can tear ourselves away from the mall).

Do you think it’s strange that I’ve not mentioned my children or how I’m worried about leaving them and that I’ll miss them?

I will miss them. And I am a bit anxious about leaving them. But I REALLY need this break. And I know they will be well taken care of.

Vins has agreed to go to Easter Camp (he never ceases to amaze me) – so he’ll be busy every day. And Booni… Booni will have playdates.

See? We’re all good!

 

I Have To Have It!

I used to be quite a regular on Pinterest.

I was not, like other Pinterest users I know, pinning art and craft ideas, organisational stuff or home DIY projects. I was very busy pinning pictures of shoes, handbags, jewellery and furniture that I wanted. I eventually, out of guilt, created a ‘Kids’ board and started pinning nursery ideas and cute outfits and shoes.

I can’t remember why, but I lost interest and kind of forgot about it all – for a year or two at least!

And now I’ve rediscovered my love for it. My love for pinning expensive shoes and handbags, places I’ll probably never go to, make up I’ll never be able to do myself, stunning women with beautiful bodies I’ll never look like and jewellery that I’ll never have. Oh, and walk-in closets. Lots of walk-in closets! But you know what? It doesn’t matter! It actually makes me happy.

LagosDad gave me an iPhone for Christmas (yay!) and I absolutely love it. I’m also terrified of dropping it, banging it against something or Booni getting a hold of it and throwing it across the room. So I’ve been looking for a (not boring) cover for it. I found the most amazing covers on Pinterest.

There’s a huge selection available on Casetify – but I think the Monika Strigel collection is the best. Now… How can I get them here?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Top Five Gorgeous Men – Reviewed

Soooo… Remember I wrote a post about my top five gorgeous men? It was about four years ago? Anyway, if you don’t – you can read it here.

I’m writing this post because my top five has changed. And I just thought you might like to know. To be honest, I know you don’t – but I’m going to tell you anyway.

I’m not a fickle person. Not really. But everything’s different now. Why? Because I discovered The Vampire Diaries! I realise I’m a little late to the game, but as my sister said – I’m so lucky I’m only just starting it now (we’re on Season 3), because I’ve still got three seasons (and the current Season 7) to go!

So… Without further ado, I present my NEW top five.

5. Ian Somerhalder

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4. Ian Somerhalder

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3. Ian Somerhalder

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2. Ian Somerhalder

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I wonder if you can guess who Number 1 will be?

1. Ian Somerhalder

SAN DIEGO - JULY 24:  Actor Ian Somerhalder in the MySpace And MTV Tower During Comic-Con 2010 - Day 3 San Diego on July 24, 2010 in San Diego, California.  (Photo by Jerod Harris/Getty Images for MySpace)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This man is SO hot!

Ok, maybe I am a little fickle.

Personal Stylist

Remember when I made that Personal Shopping appointment at House of Fraser last year? I was quite pleased with my purchases. Remember?

Well… It took a while for me to settle back down in Lagos – get the children sorted, etc. So it was a while until LagosDad and I were ready to start going out in the evenings. By this time, some of the clothes were too big and I just couldn’t wear some of the other stuff. What I mean is, I looked at them and thought, ‘What was I thinking?’ ‘People will laugh at me if I wear this, it’s so not me!’ and ‘Why on Earth did I buy this?’

I’ve worn most of it. At least once. Some more. But they really are hanging off me now. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve not exactly lost loads of weight, but those clothes are too big.

Over Easter I bought new jeans and cropped jeans/pants when I was in Dubai. They were great for a while – but they’re also big now. Again, I’ve not lost a whole lot of weight – but I have lost some since I did the Clean 9.

When I knew I was going to London, I decided to make an appointment with a personal shopper again. After a lot of internal debate (I’m just like that), I decided to go with Debenhams rather than with House of Fraser. More because, like I said, the guy from House of Fraser didn’t ‘get’ me.

I checked when my sister would be free (God bless her) to look after Vins and then made my appointment online. I went for the two hour General Update appointment. I didn’t know if I’d need a whole two hours, but figured it would be best to book that type of appointment just in case.

I met Valentina when I arrived and she showed me into a private dressing area. She asked if I’d ever ‘done this type of thing’ before and I told her about my experience the year before. She said that what she did was a little different. She didn’t just go and get a whole bunch of clothes in your size and make you try them on. She took shape, size, lifestyle, colours that suited, etc. into consideration.

She asked what I needed, what styles and colours I liked and disliked. She knew immediately what size I was wearing and then asked me what she could do for me. I told her that I needed help. And desperately! She said I was very well dressed (yay!), but that the style of top I was wearing wasn’t what really suited me. I told her that I wear that style to cover my stomach. However, she said I have a ‘wonderful hourglass figure’ and I had to show it. Oh. Ok then.

She left me for about twenty to thirty minutes to go and get a whole lot of clothes.

First – the jeans… I bought two pairs of jeans. Both amazing. And… Not expensive! I tried on a whole lot of tops and trousers and dresses. While I wasn’t thrilled with the sight of my stomach protruding in some of them, I knew that I’d be doing the Clean 9 again in a couple of weeks! And, I have to say, when I tried on a couple of the dresses, I actually said, ‘Wow!’ when I saw myself.

She told me not to look at all the sizes she’d picked up. But of course I couldn’t help myself. I had to ask her why some of the sizes were one or two sizes down from what I normally wear. As it turns out, she knows the store, the brands and the clothes really well. She knew instinctively what would fit and what wouldn’t.

Valentina helped me ‘wear’ the clothes properly. She told me how to put things together. What not to wear together and what kind of shoes to wear with each thing. And the best part was, she was friendly and chatty.

I was in heaven. And I was feeling good about myself. That’s always a bonus.

Once I tried everything on, I had to decide what I was going to take. I moved all the ‘Nos’ onto another railing. I looked at the ‘Yes’ rail and told her it was too much. She said she’d ring it all up, see how much it came to and then I could decide. I agreed.

The total was too much. I removed several items and cut my total by £200.

And I felt better. So I bought everything else!

If you’re thinking of making an appointment with a personal shopper, I really recommend Valentina. She did mention that she wouldn’t be at Debenhams (Oxford Street) for much longer, and I don’t know where she’s going, but she will be freelancing. Call her – she knows her stuff.

*This is not a sponsored post.

 

 

K Fusion by L’Kerabelle

While I was in London, I went to my hairdresser, Sam – at Le Beautique Spa.

Last summer he was telling me about this keratin treatment that he does and how amazing it is. I planned to do it before I came back to Lagos in November, but just didn’t have the time.

I mentioned in my previous post that it was such a pleasure to go to a ‘proper’ salon again. I haven’t been to my hairdresser in Lagos for quite a long time – mostly because we haven’t really gone out much lately, but also because… Well… he’s a bit of a twat. I went to get my highlights done just before Christmas and I came home looking like a bloody tiger. My hair was orange! Apart from that (and I can’t remember if I’ve written about this before), one of the last times I went there, we were talking about how many years he’d been doing my hair. I told him that I’d been going to his salon for nine years. He said, ‘Wow! And you were so hot then. Look at you now!’ See? Twat.

I did keratin treatment with him (my hairdresser in Lagos) about two years ago. I did no research. I didn’t read any reviews or find out about any products that I needed or anything. I mentioned to Sam that my hairdresser here had said I didn’t need any special shampoo or conditioner, and he was quite taken aback. Also, I lost a lot of hair.

Anyway, so when I went to get my hair cut last Monday, Sam brought up the K Fusion by L’Kerabelle again. And I kind of really wanted to do it. He had leaflets about it in the salon and answered all the questions I fired at him. After checking when my sister was free to chill with Vins for a few hours, I made my appointment.

I went for my appointment on Thursday and went through the whole process – I can’t even begin to tell you what he did. He explained each part of the treatment as he did it – but I can’t remember it all. You can click the link above for more information!

On Saturday afternoon (before going to the airport) I went back for my first post-treatment wash and blow dry. I couldn’t believe how soft my hair was! And how easy it was to blow dry! It was amazing! But the true test would be when I washed it myself once I was back in Lagos… I washed my hair on Monday (yes, I need special shampoo and conditioner). Sam told me not to use conditioner for my first couple of washes. Again, it felt so soft – I couldn’t believe it. I combed it through and left it to dry. I looked in the mirror after a while and was amazed. The waves were there… But NO FRIZZ!

Perfect!

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Oops!

This afternoon I collected V from school and decided to stop at a nearby supermarket. I pass it every day but have only been in there once. And that was about a year ago.
I wanted to see the range/variety of baby food they had. It wasn’t extensive, but better than my other local store.
V and I picked up a few things for Baby V and we were still looking at other stuff when I decided I needed a basket. There weren’t any around that I could see.
I asked a cashier (in a red uniform) where the baskets were. She waved over her shoulder, indicating that they were near the entrance. Duh. You’d have thought I’d look there!
As I started making my way over, another lady  (also in red, just like the cashier’s uniform) came walking towards us with a basket in her hands.
I thought that was nice of her – she’d heard me talking to the cashier. As she reached me, I made a move to take the basket from her and said, “Thank you so much!”
She looked at me, pulled the basket away and said, “Excuse me?”
And I realised my terrible mistake.
She didn’t work there! And she wasn’t giving me a basket!
Oops!
I hastily apologised and explained. But she looked at me as though I was something she found on the back of her shoe.
Again. Oops!

Family Complete

Last week a friend of mil’s came to visit Baby V.

The two of them hadn’t met in a while and were having a catch up.

Talk turned to someone they know who has a two (I’m guessing) year old daughter and just recently had a baby boy.

One of the women says, ‘Oh, so now their family is complete?’

And the other replies (while shaking her head from side to side (Indian style)), ‘Yah yah – family complete.

I sat there becoming more and more irritated.

WTF.

Since when does having one boy and one girl make a family ‘complete’? Is my family incomplete because I have two boys? If I had a third child and that one turned out to be a boy as well, would my family still be incomplete?

I find these archaic views of life so frustrating that I wanted to just scream.

But I didn’t.

I just shut up and smiled. This time.