Wedding

So last Sunday the other volunteers and I were invited to a wedding by Mama Gladness, and of course we couldn’t say no. The bride is employed by Mama Gladness, and she and the groom have been living together for many years and have three children – this was just to make it official. First, we had to climb a mountain in a distinctly unimpressive car to get to the church, which turned out to have only about 15 people in it, including the three of us and Mama Gladness. Slightly intimidating.

Beautiful church, though.
The inside during the ceremony

The priest stopped on several occasions to translate for us mzungus, which was nice, although the whole thing was fairly simple.

Afterwards, we got a ride with the pastor to the bride’s house, where the party was being held. I then got a lot of awkward questions about whether I was Christian… always interesting. The party itself was nice, lots of food and dancing. The KKKT on the back of the chairs refers to some kind of community organization that rents them out – I still have a moment of double-take every time I see the logo, though. Then an, oh right, I’m in Africa moment.

Partytime!

Feeding each other the first bites of cake

African wedding cake – and they do refer to it as such – is, um, a little different than what we’re used to at home. In fact, it consists of a whole goat, with head and hooves left intact, the rest skinned and cooked. Honored guests are brought up to the front to be personally served a piece. Thankfully, Christine’s vegetarianism saved the day and gave us a convenient out.

Sorry, Meghan! Also that guy’s face pretty much sums up how I felt.

Dancing the presents up

I really liked the way the presents were done – instead of being heaped on a table, the presents, mostly unwrapped, were danced to the front of the tent and given directly to the bride and groom. Lots of beautiful fabric, some furniture, cooking pots, and a big old pot for money.

Our white horse?

So remember how I mentioned the not exactly totally confidence-inspiring car ride up? Well, turns out that the car wouldn’t actually start for the way down. So instead Mama Gladness sent Eric, her other son, to get another vehicle. This is what arrived. Oh, and the ground? At least 6 inches thick with dust the consistency of flour. This picture is, in fact, the car while it was stuck in said dust. I don’t have pictures of us all in our wedding finery getting behind to push, but I can assure you it happened.

Upon climbing into the van, we realize that seats are for sissies, and this ride is going to be a little bumpy. And did I mention dusty?

Hakuna Matata?

All in all, a truly unique wedding experience, one that there is not the slightest chance that I will ever be able to forget. Note for the future: When/if I ever get married, definitely want a mzungu wedding cake.

Aveeno Skin Relief Moisturising Lotion, Fantastic for anyone suffering Ultra Dry Skin!

I am a member of the Aveeno Discoverers Programme, so I am lucky enough to be sent products from time to time to try and give honest feedback on!
The latest product I have been sent for review is their Skin Relief Moisturising Lotion. In the winter in particular, I suffer terribly with very dry and often sore skin. My legs in particular often look as if I would be better suited to a mermaids tail due to their scaly appearance! Anyone who has suffered such dry skin knows, that moisturisers can be terribly sore to apply, so I approached this with caution!
Unfragranced, i gained a little confidence after applying a tiny amount to my hands without reaction. I applied liberally to my arms and legs, which was a mistake as the consistency is a little thinner than other aveeno products, so it took around a minute to absorb – but it DID absorb!!! Instantly I noticed my skin start to approve in appearance, almost as though my skin was ‘drinking’ the lotion!! I applied the product in the evening, and in the morning i observed that still my skin looked better than after application of my usual moisturiser – it still looked moisturised!
I have been using the lotion for almost 3 weeks now, and am delighted to say that my scaley legs are a thing of the past! I apply the lotion every evening before bed, and my skin is soft and looks healthy all day, without the need to continuely reapply! Sore skin feels like a thing of the past!
The main active ingredients are Shea Butter, Triple Oat complex – Oat Oil, Oatmeal and Oat Essence.

For more information: www.aveeno.co.uk

When things get a little rough I turn to a bit of LUSH..

So every Mother, or Mother to be, knows how precious time to pamper yourself is, and for the majority of us it is the thing we alot least time to. I confess, my beauty routine has diminished from a good hour a day, to 5mins when i get up and 15mins (including a bath!) when i go to bed… 
I have become a huge fan of anything which does a job quickly and effectively, and following on from my post about the diminishing nature of my cellulite, (hoorah!) I wondered if i could do anything else in my 15min to boost the look of my buttocks! 

I’ve always been a huge fan of Lush, the colours remind me of playdoh, so bright that i just want to pick everything up and sniff it! I have used their bath bombs, bubble bars and melts for several years and enjoy the treat of a massage bar every now and then! 

But i have discovered a new favourite….BUFFY! This is my new winter Mummy must have! Describing itself as the ‘Slayer of unsightly bumps’ I had to try it out, and I am converted!! 

Presented as a square of what looks like a soap, Buffy combines exfoliation with moisturising in a bar form, so it is easy to apply and highly effective! It has a very subtle smell, so can be combined with any other products easily, enabling you to use in combination with your usual soap/bubbles etc!
Ground rice is the main exfoliant ingriedient which seems to give the perfect balance between enabling you to feel the effects without leaving your skin sore, this combined with luxurious shea butter leaves skin incredibly smooth and after using it 4 or 5 times the results are highly pleasing! My bum has not been so smooth in years! Buffy definetly slayed my bumpy bits!
A 90g bar is £5, which i think is a bargain as the 90g bar will last me ages! Just one thing to watch is if you are using it in the bath, the shea butter can leave the bath a little slippy – not good for anyone especially not Mums2be!

The joys of Easy Toning!

When I first read about Reebok’s Easytones, I laughed and announced that only idiots with more money than sense would fall for such an expensive product which clearly won’t work! I read some blogs via Reebok Women, and decided that the women were a bit bonkers, surely they couldn’t work, I mean, where is the science behind it?! Shoes cannot tone your bum!! 

A few months later, and having lost almost 2stone of baby weight, I was tempted by ‘That Bum’ in the advert to try a pair on.. I ventured into a big sports retailer and tried on the standard mesh version, I was disappointed to discover they were stupidly wide on my feet, and felt somewhat like flippers. The staff had no interest in ‘fit’ and just wanted to know if i was buying them or not, and i felt disappointed with the experience. As I was leaving a very young member of staff approached me and said ‘try the leather look ones, the fit is much tighter’ so with a renewed sense of my worth as a customer I tried on a black and bronze pair (which looked remarkably like the reeboks of the 1980’s!). Joy! They fitted, and felt erm, bouncy?! Right, these were being purchased and coming home with me!!!

The first day of wearing my easytones, i found that my lower legs and ankles ached more than anywhere else. This I believe is due to the fact they are heavier than my normal footwear! I also noticed for the first time in years, I was standing up straight, infact I was quite impressed as my new posture made me look instantly slimmer..hoorah!! I have to confess I instantly became a little addicted to wearing them in order that I might see a ‘result’ sooner rather than later! 
After 6weeks, and wearing my easy tones at every opportunity – feeling encouraged to walk ‘just that little bit further’ I noticed something rather pleasing… the backs of my thighs were showing signs of being smoother! Now, I don’t mean I have the legs of a teenage pop star nor the bum of Kelly Brooke, but seriously…I put on my shorts and bounced around with glee! No longer did I feel I needed to take an awkward stance or wear an extra long t-shirt, these legs are ok!! More than OK!! Unhappily, the shoes have done nothing to firm the blamanche consistency of my inner thigh but hey, a girl can’t have everything? (not all at once anyway!).