Sunday, December 4, 2011

9 months of serious work and all I got was a "D" ... I couldn't be happier

9 looooooooong months and my result? 

"D" yeah, DAVID

I had him 6weeks ago. I found out that I was pregnant on my birthday, and from then it's been a roller coaster of emotions. Shock, sadness, guilt, anger, exhaustion, pain and now joy, as I hold him in my arms and thank God for such an amazing blessing.

Having a support system made up of family and friends, many of whom I met here, made the journey so much easier and I must say that my greatest blessings are people. God used many people to reach me when it seemed like I couldn't hear Him and I am grateful.

As we dedicated him to God today, my heart was filled with so much joy, it's hard to believe that I was sad when I found out I was pregnant. 


I consider myself privileged to have received such a precious precious gift from God and I call him my lil' miracle.
One of friends went: "Miracle?! Was he conceived of The Holy Spirit?"
Perhaps when I share how it all happened, you'll see why I call him that.


Between feedings, diaper changes, school runs and all the stuff that a girl with 3 children under 4 has to deal with, I can't be here that much, but I'll share, however long it takes. Perhaps my story would encourage someone. I have learnt a lot this year. Lessons I wouldn't have learnt if I didn't walk this road. 
This sorta kinda sums up my story:




Thanks for dropping by.
May your dreams come true
xoxo


And
errrm, 
May your plans be interrupted by pleasant surprises like me... Did I hear you say amen? ;o)

Monday, September 5, 2011

Under construction

Hello beautiful people :o)
I know, I know, It's been really long since I've been here and I apologize.
Being MIA was not the plan at all, but then considering the turn my life has taken, things going the exact opposite of how I anticipated shouldn't come as a surprise...

No I don't mean this blog, I mean my life.

In the past few months, a lot about my life has changed.

Before now, I was sure I had it all figured out. I knew what I was doing and where I was going.
Things were simple. Loving God, walking with Him, letting Him down a lot of the time (especially with my big mouth), and enjoying His grace. Being married to D (who is really and truly a great guy) has been great, challenges and all. I am blessed to share my life with him and would choose him again if I had to. I consider my role as mum to my son and daughter a privilege. It's exasperating at times, but all they have to do is smile and my heart just melts. My siblings are great, always supportive. I've been blessed with great friends, some of who have become sisters, and of course the many women I have been privileged to serve in my career as a tailor, many of whom have become friends. There's also my blog family, from whom I have learned a lot and among whom I have found friends and sisters who have been a blessing to me. 

I've had enough challenges to keep me humble, and I have seen God give me so many testimonies, that I have come to believe that my life is proof that there is a God that rules in the affairs of men. He has brought me through so much, I sometimes feel that just saying thank you does not suffice. Perhaps that's why I talk about Him and the things He's done for me and how grateful I am a lot of the time.

These past few months though, a lot has changed. The things that used to excite me do not do so any more. Some of my friendships have suffered, cos I haven't been the friend I used to be. I am reluctant to share my real thoughts, perhaps cos I'm not sure if I should even be thinking them. My emotional energy tank is on "E" and I find myself questioning a lot of the things I thought I believed. I have found a few answers, but I still have many questions. I wish I could claim to be "deep and spiritual" and in possession of a "supernatural" key that unlocks life's mysteries, but that is not the case. I am tired.

One thing that I am sure of, in spite all my confusion, is that the word of God is true. I have chosen God's word to be the final authority in my life, so I am holding on to Ephesians 2:10 
For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
Soon this season will be over, and His work in me would be complete. My testimony would be ready to be shared and share I will.

My plan was to write a few lines in response to the kind comments and emails I have received from you, checking to make sure I'm fine, but I have served up an epistle.... you see, things just don't seem to be going the way I planned... 

Thanks for stopping by (even though I haven't been to your blog in months)
May your dreams come true.
xoxo

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Zina's dress and some apple juice ;o)

Hello *waves and smiles*

By popular demand, I'll be sharing pics of some of the stuff I've made since I moved to Houston.
This was my first custom order. Zina found me here and after a couple of emails back and forth, she came over and we ended up gisting for hours :o)

She's a wedding planner and she had a wedding coming up she wanted to make a dress for.
She brought this blue satin fabric, showed me a couple of pictures, we discussed her options and decided on this dress, breaking up the blue with a touch of black.
Here's the pic I took before her first fitting.
It's not a halter neck dress, I just put the straps up for the pic.
Here's the pic she sent me. I wish everyone would be nice enough to send me pics, so I can share them with you. You see, I don't think the body form does the clothes justice and you get a much better   view when they take the pic all dressed up.
Thanks Zina. You make my work look good 

Would you like some Apple juice or La Casera?
On our way back from church today, we stopped at the store and since Alexis was asleep, I decided to go in and let D stay in the car with the munchkins. This transpired when I was gone.

Nathan had just finished drinking water from a bottle when he told his dad he needed to "pee-pee". You see, he always waits till the very last minute to tell you when he needs to go, so we are used to dropping everything to rush him to the restroom whenever he yells "I'mma pee-pee"

D was on the phone when he heard him yelling, so he told his friend he would have to call him back cos the lil' man needed to go and he had no idea how he was going to make it into the store and then to the restroom in time, seeing as he also had to carry sleeping Alexis, get out the stroller and all that.

"Don't you have a plastic bottle in the car?" his friend asked. "Just let him pee in it". Great idea!
So Nathan peed in the bottled and everything was fine. Right?

Yeah, up until the point where Nathan looked at his pee in the plastic bottle and decided it looked like apple juice!! He began to fuss and whine... I want my juice, my juice, my juiiiiiiccccceeee!!!
D was like, "Juice ko, la casera ni!"

I laughed and laughed when he told me, and then I remembered Adura Ojo's "I want to give you water" post on Naijalines. I'm still laughing. Have a great week and happy fourth of July celebrations!


Thanks for coming by again and again.
May your dreams come true.
xoxo



Thursday, June 30, 2011

Arrghhh!! Bad Request : ERROR 400

Aaaaargh!!!
I'm soooooo vexed and it's all bloggers fault!!!

So I was up till 2am writing. There was just a lot on my mind and since writing helps me clarify my thoughts, I took my time and broke my own personal record for longest post ever... Well not longest post I ever wrote, but longest time I ever spent trying to put a post together and as I attempted to publish, I saw

Bad Request : ERROR 400

"What's all this now, ehn Blogger? I muttered angrily, "Quit messing with me joor!!"
Well, I was having a hard time staying awake, so I copied and pasted the post in a notepad as back up and went to bed, hoping to try again this morning.

Fast forward a few hours, I tried again, same thing! The blogger bar didn't even appear at all  this time!
Thinking it could be a problem with my laptop, I turned on D's own and signed in, no error message. Relieved, I found the draft and guess what?
No post!! All I found were the first few lines I scribbled!!!


WHARRAPENED???!

"Breathe Gbemi, Shebi you saved saved back up? Ehn ehn, just email it to yourself, open it here and publish" I told myself.... Back to my lappy, Nothing there! No saved notepad document, NOTHING!!!  And the error page now doesn't take me back to my post.

Arrghhhhhhhhh!!!What Rubbish!!!
My lil man's fav cartoon character... errmm, he's sorta kinda mine now too :oP

I can't even picture myself attempting to write that post again cos my mind was in a totally different zone last night. All I can think of this morning is :

  1. Food (I'm an emotional eater. Eating makes me feel better)
  2. My client that's driving three hours from Austin for a fitting. (I'm hoping that goes well cos the styles she and her daughter brought ehn?!) I'll show you the pictures and my interpretation soon.  
  3. How I must get to the store so I can use those coupons that expire today
  4. How the first half of the year ends today and I'm scared to do a goal review 
  5. Bills Bills Bills
That, my friends is how blogger swallowed a post that took me hours to write. Time I could have spent sewing, or sleeping, or cuddling  or on other extra-curricular activities ;o)
Next time when I want to clarify my thoughts, I'll just grab my journal and keep it old school!

"Why are you ranting Gbemi, kini big deal? It's happened to others before. Quit being so dramatic!!"
You just thought that didn't you? Why are you looking behind you?? You! Yes you!! I read your mind and I'm coming to get you. 
*Cue action movie soundtrack* hahahahaha!
Scared you? Maybe not. But I'm laughing and I feel better
:oD

Have a great day!
xxx

Monday, June 27, 2011

Just cos it's hubby's birthday day :o)

Hi beautiful people!

First let me confess... I'm blushing on Alexis' behalf, yeah and Nathan's too. After all the nice comments on my last post, I am officially jealous... hahaha.. Just kidding.
I'll be sure to let her know you all think she's gorgeous as soon as she's old enough to get it. Why do I think that day isn't far?! She's growing up so fast!! She now says NO!
I receive grace to raise God fearing, respectful and well grounded children in spite of the negative influences in this country. So help me GOD!!!

So it was the hubby's birthday on Wednesday!! Yay!!
You probably already know how I am about my D and all... yeah I know, I'm a "Ruth" like that *shines teeth*... I'm pretty sure that you don't toss your prized possessions or expensive jewelry around carelessly, so when you've got yourself a boo like mine who loves you and once grew his hair for you, letting you braid it just because, celebrating him should be a regular occurence....
Back in the days when it was just the two of  us :o)
*sigh*...it's the little things that make this girl happy...
Ours has been an interesting journey... Up days, down days, laughter, tears... It has been God. Only God.

His birthday was also the perfect opportunity to revive my dying dead social life. So we went to see a movie at 1:40pm...I hadn't seen the insides of a cinema for at least 6months before that day and the only other people in the theater that afternoon were an elderly couple... says a lot about my life, doesn't it :oP
Chinese buffet afterwards, which  ideally should have been a romantic dinner, but with no one to babysit the munchkins, we had to be done by 6.00 pm in time to pick up them up from daycare.
We had a great time and I'm grateful for God's blessings, especially the ones that money cannot buy... I'm committed to being thankful for the things that are working. Everything else? I'm not losing sleep over what my Father, who neither sleeps nor slumbers, says He's already worked out.

In other gist, I promised Naijamum In London that I would put up pictures of my work.
I have been sewing, but I haven't been putting up pictures cos since I moved, sewing has been on the back burner. It still is, but the thing about making clothes is that for me, it's more than a job. It's something I love to do. Sometimes I'm up till 3am sewing and even though it takes me a lot of time to finish, seeing the smile on my client's face makes it worth it.

I'll post pics of stuff I've made really soon.
I should do the sunshine award thing, as well as update my website and finish 3 dresses that have to be delivered on Thursday... So much to do, so little time *sigh*
I miss Naija, when I had an assistant and tailors and a nanny and... *slapping myself on the head* Wake up and smell the coffee Gbemi, this is your life now!!

Thanks for coming by again and again
I appreciate your taking time out to leave comments.
May your dreams come true.
xoxo

Monday, June 13, 2011

The dead girl?! That could easily have been me!

Hello beautiful people *waving*
It's been a while since I've been here and there's been so much going on. Lots of interesting stuff. I'll let you in on all the juicy gist in good time.*smile smile wink wink*

I read an article in Punch newspapers today that had me in tears. It's about Nigeria's high maternal mortality rate and highlights the story of a 29 year old lady who died on Wednesday, a day after having her baby on Tuesday. What makes this story personal for me is that it could have been me the only difference being that she had a C-Section and I didn't.

Having Alexis last year is one experience I can NEVER forget.
I came here from Naija pregnant and I hadn't decided if I wanted to live here or not, so I was in holiday mode cos I knew I was going back home. I enjoyed being a JJC, went to Vegas and had a lot of fun, but I was always tired. My bloodwork showed I was anemic, which explained the tiredness and so my gynecologist put me on some meds and watched me closely.

Things went really well. So well, I had time to take these pictures just before I left for the hospital on Sunday evening. I was feeling like a babe ;o) Of course I was wearing gbemisoke.

This was me on Monday morning after a restful night that I thoroughly enjoyed (cos of all the attention from the nurses) I felt like I was in a 5star hotel :o)

Fast forward a few hours... pushing, bearing down, Alexis was born.. no pics cos hubby had enough on his plate, watching me push and all that. He was a trooper :o) The doctor said I did good, everything was ok and he left. I held my baby, everyone was smiling.... All is well that ends well right?

errrm, not without some drama that played out like a scene from Grey's anatomy...

I started to haemorrhage!! Just like the lady in that article, I was losing blood and my PCV was low.
Thank God for observant nurses!! As she was cleaning me up, she became worried that there was too much blood. She called the doctor, who had already left the premises, and voiced her concern. He came right back and alarmed at how much blood he saw, declared an emergency. In no time, I was in the ER getting a transfusion while the whole team was searching for the source of the bleeding and trying to stop it.

This experience is one of the reasons I decided to move here. I had my son in Nigeria, and even though my gynecologist and his hospital came highly recommended, I doubt that they would've been able to respond as quickly as the team here did. I think so cos even though the doctor on duty was around, only the midwife was there when I actually delivered the baby. He came around when I needed stitches.

Having experienced childbirth in both countries, I know there's a HUGE difference. While I can sit here and say "thank God I moved here", my heart is heavy cos lives are being wasted. I do not think that my life is more valuable than that of any other woman back home. It's just not fair. The statistics are alarming! According to the article,
"!n simpler terms, the risk of a woman dying from childbirth is one in 18 in Nigeria, compared to one in 29,800 for Sweden. Our women are dying; believe it when you are told that one woman dies every 10 minutes due to complications arising from childbirth. Our men are becoming widowers and our children motherless." 
 You can therefore understand how extra thankful I am to be alive and well to see Alexis turn one. My lil Princess has gone from being this adorable bundle that had me tearing up (for joy) for weeks after I had her

To this even more beautiful angel that has filled our lives with laughter




I am grateful to God for His many blessings, Especially the ones that money cannot buy.
While I celebrate, I remember those who've passed. I am not better than them. They didn't have to die. So while we go on with business as usual, lets remember that knowing what's right to do and not doing it is leading to deaths, most of them avoidable.

Have a great week and please remember to thank God for keeping you. He didn't have to.
xoxo

Saturday, May 14, 2011

I wish I was anonymous!!

I wish I was anonymous!!

I really do. There's so much going on in my life right now that I would love to blog about and being anonymous would make me feel a lot "safer".

This blog is really about my journey to becoming a "World Class Couturier" and not all the stuff that goes on in my mind, but even though I've been really busy making clothes for my new clients, I haven't had the desire to put up pictures of stuff I've made or blog about the ups and downs of starting from scratch and all that. It all just doesn't seem as important to me as it normally would...

Hubby being away in Naija, making me sole caregiver for the munchkins while dealing with my internal conflicts and trying to meet the demands of my growing client base has been a HUGE learning experience.
Back home, I was always surrounded by people and always had someone to delegate tasks to. I was able to get a whole lot done without getting exhausted. My mother taught me that the secret of the Proverbs 31 woman was that she knew how to delegate and I must have become so used to living like that, doing everything myself is taking some getting used to, which, until I can afford to pay for help is the reality of my life.

I haven't even gotten round to ordering business cards yet and I've been so busy, I had to turn down two people this week. I wish I didn't have to, but there's only so much I can do by myself and I refuse to make promises I cannot keep. I cannot complain though, because I have enjoyed abundant grace. I find that scripture "He gives power to the faint and to them that have no might, He increases strength" to be my testimony.

Hubby came back last week *BBM dancing smiley*
I would've told you all I've been up to if I was anonymous, but I'll keep stuff PG and just say that life's good and I've got my groove back ;o)
I've been in "enjoyment mode"... lounging and enjoying cos he doesn't want me to stress myself.  Perhaps, a simple blood test when I was "blue" would have revealed I had low Oxytocin levels and a dose of "D" would've sorted me out... hahaha
Seriously though, I am convinced that God designed life to be enjoyed. While He doesn't promise us that there would be no challenges, His plan is for us not to walk alone. I am grateful for the privilege to walk this journey with D and I do not take it for granted. Perhaps this is because I know that having it so good is  not because I'm smarter or sharper than the next person. It's just God's grace

More important than this amazing relationship D and I share is this walk with God which I find to be beyond what my mind can comprehend. What if I didn't know Him?
Well, lets just say I'm glad I do and would love for you to come to know Him too (if you do not already)
He's made my life beautiful. He can do even more for you.

Thanks for coming by again and again
May your dreams come true
xoxo

PS
Thank you NaijaMum in London. God bless you.
Signed, Your self imposed sister ;o)

Sunday, May 8, 2011

My life as Remi's daughter

I got my first ever mother's day card this year :o)


It had me thinking about my mom and how much I miss her.

I find it remarkable that I have so many memories of her... She passed when I was 20 and I didn't like her very much in my teens, so I didn't listen to her much. Not having to deal with her "DRAMA" was one of the reasons I loved boarding school. She was ALWAYS up in my business!! She once called a guy I had just broken up with to tell him not to take me seriously as I "didn't know what I was doing". aaaarrrgh!! Who does that?! She said he was "husband material" I was 17.....

Remi was a force of nature!! Everybody knew her everywhere we went. She considered it her life's mission to stand up for folks who couldn't stand up for themselves. Case in point:
Many many years ago...I don't know exactly, lets just say '97 or 98 when fuel scarcity had become the norm in Nigeria. She was at a filling station when a random guy was accosted by some mobile policemen as he was leaving with his jerry can of fuel. They attempted to impound his "treasure"(which he had queued for hours for) on the grounds that it was illegal to carry fuel around in a jerry can. Classic case of "chancing"(like seniors in secondary school used to do to juniors). Of course my mom couldn't stand by and watch. She marched straight to the policemen and told them off for taking advantage of the guy, reminding them that because of their uniforms, they could easily have jumped the queue and gone straight to the pump. She made them return his jerry can of fuel and then gave one of them her keys, pointed out her car and had him drive it all the way to the front and fill her tank. She must've been feeling like VOLTRON.. Defender of the universe.

Now that I have children of my own, I realize what HUGE sacrifices she must have made, raising all five of us. Me especially, cos I was a VERY troublesome energetic child. She showed us tough love!! and is alive in my heart, almost 12 years later just like my dear friend reminded me when she replied my tweet earlier today.


@ To live in the hearts of those you love is not to die..She lives on in you as you live out those ideals she taught you.
Reminded me of a facebook note I wrote 2years ago on the anniversary of her passing...


My life as Remi's daughter part 1

by Gbemi Adekoya on Wednesday, September 16, 2009 at 12:15pm

“GBEMI!” Her voice rang out. “Are you sleeping? That seems to be all you do these days” 

“This woman has come again oh!” I thought silently to myself. “I’m on holiday, am I not allowed to sleep anymore? I’m here now, why did u call me?” I asked her, giving her ‘the look’.
I want you to fix this weave for me. I don’t feel like going to the salon, she said.
“FIX WEAVE?? Me I don’t know how to fix it oh! You better just go the salon jeje”, I exclaimed, thinking “does this woman know what she’s saying”.
“Come and fix it jare! The thing is easy to fix. I watched the stylist closely the last time I was at the salon and I’m sure you can do it. Just weave the hair and sew the weave on. Don’t worry I’ll show you.”
“Hmm, if I spoil it, don’t shout oh!” I warned her.
“You won’t spoil it. I’ll guide you through the process.” She seemed confident, so we started.
Fast forward a few hours later and several warnings from her “if you prick me with that needle one more time, you’ll be in trouble” and my “sorry now, I didn’t do it on purpose”, we were done and then, she attempted to pay me.
“What’s that?” I asked her, really surprised. “Why would I take money from you for making your hair?”
“Bring your right hand here!” she commanded, putting N250 in it. She held on to my hand and said to me:
“I am paying the same amount I paid the stylist a few weeks ago to teach you a lesson. This is so important; you must pass it on to your children. YOU CAN MAKE MONEY FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE IF YOU LEARN HOW TO DO THINGS WITH YOUR HANDS. School is important, but you must acquire skills. Learn all you can, because LEARNING IS A TREASURE TO TAKE WITH YOU EVERYWHERE YOU GO. If you get robbed or ever lose everything, you can start afresh if you know how to do something. More importantly, you would never have to be at the mercy of anyone, because you can generate your own resources.”
This happened many years ago. I must have been 15 or 16. I don’t know the exact date, nor did I pay much attention to her words then, but they have gone on to shape my life and inform my career choices.
I have not only made a living from turning the gift God gave me into a skill, I have given the 7(and counting) people on my team the opportunity to earn a living and I have also made many women happy.
It’s exactly 10 years since you’ve been gone and I’ve been so busy following your advice, I only just found time to write this tribute now. You packed into 44 years what many cannot attempt in 100. I am privileged to have been born by you.
SHALOM OLUREMI OLUSOLA SODUNKE (22-10-1955 to 16-9-1999) RIP

 ·  · Share · Delete
Oluwaseyi OguntuboSeyi Soremekun AdegbesanAdedayo Odunfa-Badipeand 10 others like this.
    Happy Mother's day Mommy. I loooooooove you.

    Monday, April 18, 2011

    Thank you

    Thank you.
    That's all I came to say.
    To God for not giving up on me in this season, for keeping me from losing my mind and helping me get through each day, THANK YOU! For the special birthday present THANK YOU!! For totally shaking things up so I know who's BOSS, THANK YOU!! For making it so clear to me that You are THE ONE running things, THANK YOU!!! Have it Your way and do with me as you please... I know your thoughts towards me are good, so lets gooooooooooo.
    To D for loving me and putting up with me, THANK YOU.... When I count my blessings, I count you twice xoxoxo
    To you for the show of love, the emails, tweets, messages and phone calls. THANK YOU.

    So, I don't know what to make of my blog stats... They make no sense at all cos I've had more traffic in the period I have not been in the frame of mind to blog than at the times when I was practically living on this blog. From the emails I have received, my guess is this is how it played out... you come here to check on me, you find that I haven't posted anything and then you send me an encouraging email and then you come again shortly after.... I could be wrong, and I probably am, but please indulge my delusions (let's chalk it up to the fact that I just turned 32 but feel 10 years older)... wait oh, the point of this post was to say thank you....how did I get into all this age/ mid life crisis drama????? *scratches head*.... It's official! I AM becoming old oh!!! *hahahaha*

    So back to the point of this post
     Worry weighs a person down;
          an encouraging word cheers a person up.
                                                                      Proverbs 12:25
    Thank you for cheering me up. May you never walk alone.


    In other news, my lil' man turned 3 last week.
    I've got a lot to be thankful for. I remember believing God for almost a year to conceive and how God sent me a word one day... I should share that story oh! Perhaps it'll help someone walking that road. God is still in the business of working miracles. Believe it, my life is proof. 


    PS If you're reading this Oyin (you left a comment in my last post), please drop me a line on gbemi@gbemisoke.com There's something important I need to share with you.


    Thanks for coming again and again
    xoxoxo

    Wednesday, March 23, 2011

    Cos it's my birthday!!!

    I'm half asleep as I write this post, but it's my birthday and that's a good reason to defy sleep...
    So much has been going on, most of it in my mind.

    I'm usually happy, positive and excited. I'm wired like that. If you've read about temperaments, I'm a Sanguine. I'm an extroverted, friendly, hopeful girl who is easily distracted, lives for the moment, is almost always late and would easily win a gold medal for talking if it was an Olympic game :o)
    I'm also very mischievous... This pic? That was me making faces on my wedding day. Need I say more?

    These past few weeks though, I've had a dark cloud hanging over me. I've been so blue, it's hard to drag myself out of bed most mornings... Only God's grace has kept me going.

    I'm usually in touch with my emotions and have to constantly work on not being controlled by my feelings, but I've worked out a system of blocking negative emotions by focusing on what's working and staying thankful. This has worked quite well and seen me through MAJOR tragedy.... *sigh* the things my eyes have seen...hmmmm... Only God's grace has kept me going.

    Why then would this dark cloud not go away? It's not like anything bad happened to me. I only moved to a new country. Is that something to be sad about? I don't think so, cos I know it's an opportunity many would give an arm and a leg for... I can't explain it. I just DO NOT like it here. I feel like part of me closed down with my business in Nigeria. I miss my life back home. I miss my sisters and my brother. I miss my friends. I want to go home.

    I'm sure that moving here now is the right thing for my family and I have no doubt in my mind that I'm where God wants me to be right now. Why then is that not enough reason to be happy? I don't know. I can't explain it. I'm just blue.
    That's why I haven't been here a lot cos I would hate to project my negative emotions on y'all who take time out to come here. I'm not very good at masking my emotions (and I don't plan to ever be)... I'm happy you come here again and again and I don't plan on chasing you away by being negative.
    I'm still thankful, still grateful to God for everything, but I'm still blue.

    I woke up on Monday morning and thought to myself "It's time to take my joy back!" Enough of dragging myself through each day with no "Joie de vivre"... I dropped the munchkins off at daycare and went off to get pampered. I felt better after the manicure and pedicure :o) The massage chair? That one was something else! Enjoyment is good oh!!! You should've seen me. I was moaning audibly, going ooooh, ahhh...I am convinced that God didn't design me for suffering at all at all...I cannot afford to miss heaven. No way!!

    My emotions are gradually catching up with my confessions and I'm positive things will get better. I'm not going to wait for this dark cloud to go away. I'll keep going. Day after day. I'll be strong. I'll keep holding on to His word
    And now, dear brothers and sisters, let me say one more thing as I close this letter. Fix your thoughts on what is true and honorable and right. Think about things that are pure and lovely and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise. Keep putting into practice all you learned from me and heard from me and saw me doing, and the God of peace will be with you.Philippians 4:8-9
    I'll keep dwelling on the positive.
    Love, life, good health, the love of my life D, my precious munchkins Nathan and Alexis, my siblings and their husbands Tope, Jimi, Busola, Kunle and Dotun; my nieces Babara, Anjola, Toluwanimi and Temiloluwa; my dear friends who have become sisters; my blogfam, and the many many women who have become a part of my life through my business. I have a lot to be grateful for and I'm fixing my thoughts on them like Paul said to do.

    When I finally fall in love with America, I'll look back at this post and smile, knowing that life isn't about waiting for the storm to be over, it's about dancing in the rain.

    Happy birthday Gbemi

    Tuesday, March 8, 2011

    Dozing off at the wheels...True story

    EXHAUSTED!

    That's how I feel right now. I can't remember the last time I felt like this. Yesterday, I dozed off at the wheels. I was doing about 65 miles on the freeway and I just found myself on another lane entirely!! I screamed, looked back at the muchkins who were fast asleep, said a quick "THANK YOU JESUS", turned up the music really loud and started to sing along to Donnie Mcclurkin's "Great is your mercy", which just happened to be what was playing. I shudder to think what could've happened. He really does give His angels charge over me!!
    My natural tendency is to form "super(wo)man" and carry on like I'm on top of things, but right now, my energy is nowhere near enough. Thankfully I can find strength in the WORD

    He gives power to the faint and to them that have no might, He increases strength.
                                                                                                                                        Isaiah 40:29

    While my physical energy is at an all time low, my emotional energy is even lower, that's why you haven't seen a post in a while... I suck at everything when I don't feel so good, a habit I really need to outgrow... seems kinda childish and not appropriate for a thirty-something-year-old-mother-of-two ;P...Perhaps after my birthday in two weeks, I'll wake up and be all "grown up". Did I just hear you laughing at me *rme*...laugh all you want, I'll be fine hahaha
    My coping strategy hasn't changed. Maintaining an attitude of gratitude isn't easy, but it works. There are the obvious things to be thankful for. For example, my lil sis just had another baby! God be praised!! What about the not-so-obvious-ones? For example, the day after we moved, I woke up in pain. This was after I was feeling all 'gangsta' cos I drove a U-Haul truck oh! :P...Anyway,  I couldn't find the energy to get out of bed and I thought to myself, "what's there to be thankful for???" Well, pain is a sign my body is functioning properly and my nerves aren't damaged, so there IS something to be thankful for. What if we didn't own anything that needed moving, or what if we didn't have an apartment to move to, or what if we didn't win the green card lottery that had us moving here in the first place???

    We all handle change differently. What's your coping strategy?

    Thanks again and again for sharing my journey and taking time out to leave comments. May your dreams come true xoxoxo

    PS Thanks for your emails and calls when I was MIA. I feel so much better just writing this post. Special shout out to my girls Honeydame and Toyin

    PPS Pictures of dresses will be up shortly. I have unpacked and there's lots of exciting stuff. The dressforms I ordered from amazon are here and I'm working out pricing at the moment. I'm marking some stuff down, so I can have an introductory price special :o) Watch this space

    PPPS okay okay, It'll be the last PS I promise :o) Did I mention I have my first consultation this evening? She found me on here. I'm soooo excited *bbm dancing smiley*

     P.. just kidding *mischievious grin* see you again soon....

    Friday, February 18, 2011

    I cried and cried...

    My friend Nkem put up a post about her wedding dress that I made and it had me in tears... Oh no I wasn't sad. They were happy tears :o) She tells the story of how she burst into tears at her final wedding dress fitting four weeks to the "big day"!
    Here's a lil excerpt
    Femi had to come up to console me; of course I was inconsolable. There was no plan B. This was a disaster. Our honey-tongued designer once again “assured” us that he could fix it. Femi pleaded with me to give him one more chance and I did. After about 3 more weeks, with one week to go, I go for what should have been a final fitting and the disaster had gotten worse (I did not think it was possible for it to have worsened). Reality sets in: I do not have a dress to wear on my wedding day! And I have 7 days to find one.
    My rescuer came in the form of friend who makes clothes for me and had come to know my style and preferences. She runs a label called Gbemisoke (www.gbemisoke.blogspot.com)
    We explained the situation to her over the phone and thankfully she consented to helping salvage the situation. We engaged her on a Thursday, she proceeded to shop for the fabrics on Friday, spent the whole day on Saturday making the dress and on Sunday I went for my first fitting and the dress fit perfectly. It wasn’t by any means what I had previously envisioned but at this stage, I couldn’t be choosy
    Read the full story on her blog:
    I hade made the gold raw silk dress for their registry wedding a few weeks earlier.


    Here's my fav pic from their wedding. That's her holding my son, Nathan (she calls him Prince Edward) He was about 5 months old and he got enough kisses that day to last him a lifetime :o)
    When I got the call from Femi about making the dress, I wasn't sure I could pull it off. I knew, however, that they really needed me, so I dropped everything I was working on and went fabric shopping the very next day. I drafted the pattern and cut the dress immediately and started sewing on Saturday morning. She called me from the airport as soon as she got into Lagos on Sunday to ask how it was going and she couldn't believe it when I said she could come for her first fitting. I was positively thrilled that the dress fit :o).. She was soooo happy, and that for me was enough to make up for all the neck-breaking work.

    I met Nkem in 06 through Femi and I've made many dresses for her some of which I already shared here and here. She loved my work and encouraged me a great deal, introducing me to many of her friends who have become loyal clients and dear friends. You remember Lebs from this post? I met her through Nkem, as well as Atinuke of Zuri Perle and many others.

    As you've probably read from previous posts, I have no formal training in sewing or designing. All I've got is an innate God given gift that I have worked my behind off to turn into a skill. All I know, I have learnt on the job. The encouragement from friends like Nkem who could have discouraged me cos I was less than perfect have played a HUGE role in making me into the sought after clothier that I am today. When I read the hateful and spiteful comments people sometimes leave on blogs about designers work, I cringe and thank God for a support system made up of my family and friends who helped me grow without killing my dream. While I do not expect everyone to like a designers work, there is a HUGE difference between constructive criticism, which points out things that are less than perfect and offers pointers to helping others become better, and vitriol laced attacks that cut people down.... I can imagine how the designers must feel, cos I know firsthand how much work, physical and emotional, goes into creating clothes, especially in Nigeria where it is such a huge challenge to run a business....

    I've gone from making dresses like these for Nkem and her friends back in 06/07



    To making better ones for her even after her wedding dress
    Femi took this pic of me grinning from ear to ear at City People magazine's fashion show competition when they came to support me. See my wiiiide grin? I couldn't believe it when I was called out as 2nd runner up!! You see, I didn't know until that day that it was a competition. I took part just for fun, plus participation was free and all I had to do was bring the clothes. You can view that collection over at www.gbemisoke.com. It was my first fashion show and there were so many talented designers that had been doing their thing loooooong before I started. I realized that day that there was more to this "hobby" of mine. I met Frank Osodi (He designed Agbani Darego's Miss World dress) that day and that led to an internship with him that has moved me closer to achieving my dream.
    I thank God for blessing me with dear friends, too numerous to mention who believed in me when all I had was a dream that one day I would become a "world class couturier", a dream that has taken me on an exciting journey that started from delivering clothes to clients on okada until I could afford a beat up nissan sunny, to having a film crew fly from South Africa to feature me in SABC's documentary Promise Africa and fulfilling my elusive dream of taking courses at the acclaimed London College of Fashion last summer.

    I haven't reached my "world class couturier" goal yet, but guess what? I'm closer to it now than I was and I'm going to keep giving my best.

    Continuous effort - not strength or intelligence - is the key to unlocking our potential. ~ Winston Churchill

    Thanks for coming by again and again.
    May your dreams com true xoxoxo

    Wednesday, February 16, 2011

    Gbemi's got her cooking mojo on overdrive... and some fab dresses too :o)

    So here are the pics I promised :o)

    Here's my "Gbemskiluzi" special "obe ata dindin" inspired by 9jafoodie
    So, she said to add basil leaves to the dish and when I got to the store, I didn't remember what leaves she said, so I bought parsley *hides face in shame*... just kidding :o)
    I garnished the rice with the parsley and steamed some broccoli... Believe me, I enjoyed every bit of it. I usually serve my food with a salad plate so that even with a small portion, the plate looks really full... this helps my mind think I've had a lot. I still went for a second helping though :P


    So D didn't want rice, so I boiled him some yam :D... I think I got a pass mark cos he went for more too...
    Seeing as this blog's focus is not food, (sorry, fellow foodies)*insert wicked laughter here*.... Here are a couple of pics of yours truly rocking gbemisoke... You remember the dresses I made for the twins for our friend, Ro's wedding? You can find that post here. Well I didn't finish my own dress in time for the wedding, and I promised to post pics later. Today is later :o) It's a tulip dress with pockets. Yeah, I love pockets :o) The sleeves are overlapping and I embellished the shoulder area with some crystals... I love this dress and I've worn it over and over and over and...(ok, you catch my drift)... hehehe. My point is, clothes are solutions. I make pieces that solve problems, so if you ever need a solution provider for custom made clothes, think GBEMISOKE :o)
    Here's another dress I really love. We handstitched about 20 dozen crystals around the neckline and pockets. The result, a simple bejeweled shift dress that had me feeling like a million dollars. Feel good clothes are my forte. When a woman looks good, she feels good...so in my own lil' way, I'm making the world a better place, one gbemisoke wearing woman at a time.
    PS After I wore this dress, I realized that it was about 2 inches too long!! I have since fixed that 'issue', with the full support of D (my accomplice) *grinning* and will be rocking it soon. Good thing the cold's going away fast :o)

    Thanks for coming again and again.
    May your dreams come true xoxoxo