Your favourite inconsistent blogger is back! Aaaand issa wifeee! Here’s to hoping I leave the blogging inconsistency in 2017. For real. It has been quite the year. I guess it is safe to say that God slayyyyed ’23’ on my behalf. I am very thankful, blessed and floating on cloud nine. So, here are a few people and events I am incredibly thankful for in 2017:
- Service Year and Personal Growth: I remember starting the year excited about personal development and growth. I was moving away to Ife for a year and getting my own apartment! Exciting! I soon realized that I really enjoyed living alone but I hated the struggle of shopping and cooking my own meals in a not-so-defined space. That was my first buzz kill. The second came when I soon realized that contrary to my dad’s plan to give me a car for moving around campus, some new Customs regulations prevented him from putting the Micra on the road till we got the papers sorted. This meant I had a daily 30 minutes walk to and from campus. Yeah, took all the fun out. I got used to it pretty quickly. Overall, I am thankful for a national youth service, the friends and connections I made during it and the amount of growth that happened in a year.
- Mandela Washington Fellowship: I had my interview for the Mandela Washington Fellowship in January and received the congratulatory email in March. I travelled in June and met the most incredible group of 24 Africans at my University in Pennsylvania. It was life-changing! I find it very special that we are all still connected and I am thankful for our bond.
- The Proposal: In May, HE PROPOSED! Omg, that was one of the best moments of life for me. I can still remember that I was smarting from making so many mistakes with our hotel reservation and giving the driver the wrong address. All that frustration and I was in tears over how our pre-wedding photoshoot session was off to a wrong start already. Yes! We had already planned our pre-wedding session. I remember we got the mess I created sorted and went up to the room to get ready. I was thinking to myself, I better salvage this otherwise, the pictures will be terrible. So, I tried to sweet talk him and before I understood what was happening, he was on his knees. I was screaming and crying. I have always been one of those girls who swore she would never cry when proposed to but with everything that had happened (plus the fact that we had had a discussion about rings and he said something like ‘You’ll get your ring at the altar’) I was actually caught off guard and did not expect it. Oh and the ring? Lordd, the ring! Haha. I am very grateful for the man that is now my ozzzband, who is sitting right across me as I type and has no clue he has finally made it on to my blog.
- Wedding and Life Planning With The Girls: As I was determined to plan my wedding myself, I created a Whatsapp group early in January with my girls on it. Over the year, the group grew and I am very very thankful for the girls who have endured and tolerated me for a year! These ladies have become family and I would not trade them for anything! From Emem, Thandie, Pipe and Tosin, to Favour, Iyanu, Ronnie, Nafisa and Tito, you ladies made 2017 bearable and hilarious. Cheers to a great 2018, especially now that we have refused to delete that Whatsapp group. Ronnie, I have to say a huge well done! Haha, she handled my 200+ yards of wedding train like a boss, of course, the ladies came to her rescue a few times. Thank you so much for enduring me. LOL! Bolaji Adekoya is also someone I am definitely thankful for. Thank you for helping out in every way!
- My TEDx Talk: I remember how elated I felt when Toyyib and a colleague of his walked up to me after a YALI Learns event that I hosted alongside other Mandela Washington Fellows from Ibadan. Oh goodness, just like that, I got to tick off that goal before 25!! The night before and the morning of the event, I kept messing up all my lines and no matter how I tried, it just was a sorry mess. Thankfully, right before, I took a deep breath and gave it my best shot! A huge thank you to the TEDx UI team for the opportunity.
- Grace Okoli of Shanyi Organics: I met this lady at the 3rd Natural Hair Meetup. I will be honest, it still amazes me how much our spirits clicked and have been in sync. Thank you for making the end of the years special, thank you for pitching in to help without hesitation. Thank you for praying with me since the week we met, right up to the night before I got married. Cheers to 2018, boo!
- Getting Married: On December 22 and 23, 2017, we got married! Days leading up to our wedding, everything that had worked out so well suddenly began to fall apart. I was freaking out over everything. Thank goodness for Jesudunmo Longe of Lautitia Azur Events. I had always wanted to plan my wedding but figured I will need an events coordinator to help run the day. She handled everything like a boss. I am grateful for everyone who came out to celebrate with us, despite the fuel scarcity. I have to give a huge shout out to the dream team: Aunty Bisi of Styles Inn and the whole Styles Inn/Dabira Bridals Team, IniJesu of IniLoran, Doyin of Doyen Signature, Triumph Awa-Arua, Feyi, Oyinkansola, Grace Okoli of Shanyi Organics, it really took a village to work on my wedding gown. We were in serious crunch mode and we had taken a few emergency orders in November. We started creating on December 1 and best believe it, I beaded till the morning of my wedding along with my sister Iyanu of Maple Street NG and Boluwatife of Hair By Pribodunke, yes, my wedding hairstylist! Everyone pitched in. Even my Mom!! My gown was indeed a labour of love.
- FAMILY: Finally, I am grateful for my family. This picture says it all, my dad to the left, my husband peeking mischievously in the centre and my father-in-love to the right. I am grateful for my siblings and my Mom, my uncles, aunties and cousins that came through and new family gained through love. It has been a good year. I only pray that 2018 will be greater.
How has your 2017 been?
Whatever the answer, cheers to the new year and all the bright possibilities that come with it! May you have a mind-blowing new year!!
Iro and Buba (Friday’s Outfit) & Wedding Gown: Styles Inn for Dabira Bridals
Photography: Tosin Akinyemiju
Videography: Taiwo Egunjobi Films
MC: Taiwo Egunjobi
Events Coordination and Ushering: Lautitia Azur Events
3D Pink fabric: Moji Alaso
Aso-oke: Knotty Knitters
Shoes (Friday): Shoepify
Shoes (Saturday): ASOS Bridals
Accessories (both days): Charming Charlie
Bridesmaids Earrings: Shop Raenna
Makeup (both days): Glam by Mo
Gele: Beauty Bellaz
Decor (both days): Decor Mastaz