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The Travel Questions You Asked And My Answers

We have just returned home from a whirlwind five-week tour of Europe. If you follow my Instagram stories you would have seen that we spent time in Prague, London, Scotland, and Amsterdam. Do you want to know the craziest thing? I really thought that when I was traveling I would be able to blog every other day. How naive I was. We were super busy meeting with family and friends, shopping and exploring our surroundings – oh, and working every day (can’t stop, won’t stop).

Here I am once again coming back to you with a promise to myself and to you to blog more frequently – after all, it is somewhat therapeutic for me to blog.

As I was preparing to write this blog post I thought to myself “what should I write about”? Then I remembered the questions that some of my Instagram followers sent me. A question and answer segment is a perfect way to kickstart my still jetlagged mind and hands.

What was the best moment of the trip? I can think of three things:

  1. Catching up with family and friends. For me, it had been ten plus years since I had been to Europe so it was fascinating to catch up with people and share some great times and immortalize the moments with photographs.
  2. I have followed the royals for years so visiting Buckingham palace was a special moment.
  3. My birthday too was magical – my husband made it one to remember in Amsterdam.

What was the funniest thing that happened? When went out for dinner at Nandos in Scotland and I was a little overzealous with the chili sauce and coleslaw. Long story short – I had to run to the toilet before heading home and endured a very stressful ride home concentrating on not soiling myself and embarrassing myself in front of family.

It certainly wasn’t funny at the time, but hilarious now!

Can you please share what you bought on your trip? This is an interesting question  – a lot of people assumed that I would go crazy shopping – but I practiced incredible restraint. In total, I bought 2 pairs of jeans, 1 black dress, I red coat, 4 wigs and some hair products. My main focus was on purchasing makeup – in Australia, we do not have makeup ranges for people of color like myself. Let’s just say I stocked up for the next two years. From all angles, I will be on fleek!

What did you miss from home? For me it was just space particularly, in the bathroom – I found European bathrooms small. I am of average weight and height and still felt claustrophobic in the bathrooms – imagine if you were bigger?

Of course, family and friends that I left back home – oh and my wardrobe!

Did you have a budget for the trip? We bought all of our tickets, arranged accommodation before we left Australia so the money we had was for shopping, food, and experiences. If I was to monetize the budget it was about 100 pounds a day.

What was the scariest moment? When we were heading back home we had accumulated so much luggage (hubby and bub). I was certain that we were going to have to pay for the excess luggage and I was dreading that moment. We were about 25 kilos over the allowed baggage weight. To my surprise, the kind lady at the counter checked us in and didn’t charge us anything. Praise be to God!

I am going to stop the Question and Answer segment right here because I want to keep the blog posts short and sharp. Everyone else who asked a question and it wasn’t answered here I will personally respond to you shortly.

IamTinashe

Mini Me

Travelling With a Toddler

As you read this we have just arrived overseas with our toddler in tow. It took us a marathon 30 plus hours of travel – including stopovers – something I would highly recommend for any parents planning on traveling with a toddler.

When I was telling people that we were going to Europe with our toddler we faced a lot of mixed reactions. Most people were questioning why we would travel with a toddler? People raised the disruption of said toddlers schedule (what schedule?) and the inability to do the fun things we would be able to do on our own.

My thoughts were – “no one was there when we made the baby so why should we expect other people to look after our creation so we can travel?‘. Plus, hubby and I are grown, so the idea of partying throughout our whole holiday just isn’t as appealing as it was in our twenties. Of course, we will sneak in one or two date nights  – we are only human – but we are happy to have moved past that partying stage.

Back to traveling with a toddler – when it comes to parenting, and to a lot of people’s surprise, I am a person that just goes with the flow. I learned pretty early on that in order to manage any situation that arises you need to have a rough plan and resources at hand and just deal with what’s in front of you – there and then.

From my recent personal experiences, these are my top tips for traveling with a toddler:

  1. In your hand luggage have at least two changes of clothes – you never know what will happen up in the air.
  2. One can never have too many diapers. I packed one diaper for every hour that we traveled – seems excessive but you don’t want to get caught out!
  3. Pack snacks and food that your toddler is accustomed to – because, well, we all know how unappealing plane food is.
  4. My little one can be fussy about the bottle she drinks from so I made sure I had her favorite bottle/s on hand to keep her hydrated throughout the flight.
  5. Carry familiar toys and books that will keep them entertained – I found that stickers and play dough were a big hit!
  6. If you can, travel later in the day – this will help to line up nicely with their sleep routine, especially as you transition across time zones.
  7. Arrange a stopover (2-3 hours max). During this time let them run around the airport so you can all stretch your legs and consequently reduce the toddler’s energy.
  8. Create rapport with the stewards – they will be your lifelines – i.e. they’ll help to heat up your food and provide extra snacks and toys for your little one.
  9. Make sure that when the toddler sleeps you sleep, otherwise you will be in a world of pain.
  10. Just relax – kids sense anxiety and tension and mirror it. If you take it easy during the flight they will too. Calm mum, calm toddler they say.

Truth is, I am very lucky to have an easy going, up-for-anything kind of toddler – but if you have any other tips that would help other parents who travel with their toddler please, share in the comments section.

IamTinashe

In My Humble Opinion

Pursuit Of Happiness

Happiness

Pronounced [hap-ee-nis]

Noun

1. the quality or state of being happy.

2. good

I feel like as I get older it really doesn’t take much to make me happy.

If you had asked me to define happiness a few years ago I would have written paragraphs upon paragraphs of criteria to fit the bill.

Nowadays, it really is the simple things that make the difference.

In no particular order:

I married to the man of my dreams and have been blessed with off spring.

I am healthy, spiritually grounded, of sound mind and working in an occupation that I studied at university.

We have shelter, clean water to drink and freedom to do as we please.

My pantry and fridge are packed to the rafters, giving me endless options to create delicious meals for my loved ones.

Laundry, which can get out of control with a toddler is done – all our clothes are ironed and packed away nicely.

The house is super clean – floors are vacuumed and mopped, bench and table tops are wiped and everything is in its place.

My wardrobe is only filled with things I love and feel fantastic in when I wear them.

My make up collection is simple collection of things I need and use on a daily basis.

Above all I am surrounded by love and the people that I love, could not ask for anything more.

Practising daily gratitude has taught me to find immense joy even in the simplest things.

IamTinashe
Dress – IamTinasheCustom | Belt – Country Road | Shoes – Wittner
Obsessions

Infatuations | September 2017

I would describe myself as an obsessive person. When I like something I really like it. It’s all I think about – it’s all I want.

Right here, right now, I share some of my current obsessions. In no particular order:

Box Braids
Recently, I cleaned out my Instagram and started only following people that provide style inspiration. This basically translates to a whole lot of “South African” cool kids that are just S-L-A-Y-I-N-G! I honestly had forgotten how beautiful braids can look and the endless styling possibilities – this inspired my current hairstyle.


Estée Lauder Foundation
Every female I know has always raved about this product but I never believed the hype.  I have always been a die-hard M.A.C fan and too stingy to part with my hard earned cash to support something new. Curious about the possibilities, I managed to get a sample which I tried for about two weeks. I am now a BELIEVER. Typical – always late to the party!


High Wasted Jeans
Honestly, these jeans are God’s gift to women postpartum. Unless you are a celebrity with a personal trainer and a dietician on call your stomach is never really the same – so anything that helps to tuck away the lumps and bumps is much appreciated!

Vans Sneakers
We will be going overseas in a few weeks and I have been looking for shoes that give me style credibility and maintain function. Enter these sneakers! As you read this I am currently doing research to see how I could potentially style the shoes. They are slowly winning me over – I’m just going to think long and hard before I hit the finalize purchase button.

IamTinashe x0x0

My Life

Living With Purpose

It’s funny how we all pass through life’s infamous rut. Work. Eat. Exercise. Drink. Sleep. Clean The House. Laundry. Are you really living? I mean, living with purpose.

You owe that much to yourself – tomorrow is not guaranteed. Something a lot of us forget. We get caught up in the detail and forget to look at the bigger picture.

Oddly, I have been thinking about this, lately –  A LOT. Living with purpose – a minimalist approach to existence. One without emotional, physical, or financial baggage.

As such, and in no particular order, my areas of focus at the moment are:

Sleep more – As parents we have now reached a point where our little one is sleeping through the night. Time to payback the sleep debt. Reverse the aging process

Partake in vigorous exercise daily – I am already doing this but I want to push myself harder and see the changes are long for in the mirror.

Consume more water – This is something I have never been good at but I am determined to master it  – my body will thank me.

Be conscious of time Apart from money, time is the only other thing that we as humans measure – I need to wholly embrace this. Make time for myself.

Heart Race – Remind myself daily that I am growing up not old and do something that scares me each day.

Talk less, listen more – when you actively listen to others you learn so much. 

Last but not least….learn to relax more, master the art of doing nothing.

These listed items are all a series of adjustments that will take time. I’ll get there.

African Print Dress – IamTinashe Custom |  Heels – Wittner
IamTinashe 

 

Obsessions

Infatuations | July 2017

In my free time  – which is rare – I like to shop online and put items I like in carts that I might eventually buy. Sometimes, these selected items make it home – other times they stay in the cart until they are sold out or I just get over them. Anyhow, I wanted to share with you the items that I am currently coveting.

Leather Snake Skin Boots

I first saw these when they came out priced at $259.95. I wanted them but being conscious of the money that I spend meant I was just going to ride it out. The wait has paid off and as you read this, these babies are on their way to me. I purchased them for 99.95 – you can’t wipe the smile off my face.

Wittner – $99.95 On Sale

Gucci T-shirt

I love the Vintage, weathered look and the Gucci Print on the front. It’s one of those pieces that I have imaged wearing in so many different ways.The real question is should I get black or white?

Gucci – $570

Leather Jacket

Keep an eye on my eBay page  – soon you will see that I am currently selling not one, not two, but three leather jackets. I am mostly getting rid of them because I feel like they are not flattering to my new shape as a mummy. And that’s not necessarily a bad thing because it means I am now back on the market for a leather jacket.

I have seen a few that I have lusted over here, here and here but this jacket from Wittner has my heart – again its heavily discounted it so I am seriously considering it. With matched black hardware, this jacket is a luxe investment in contemporary classic dressing.

Wittner – $229.95 On Sale

Statement Earrings

I go through phases with earrings. Sometimes I am really subtle, other times not so much. Right now I am really feeling statement earrings! Since they are cheap as chips and make one a BIG statement, I am purchasing two!

Lovisa – $29.95 (Fringe earrings)