I find myself spending an incredibly alarming long time on my phone and social media, perhaps because I am not as busy as I use to be or perhaps because I am simply just bored. I could easily stay on my phone for up to 7 or 8 hours a day looking through Instagram, watching Youtube or even just reading articles or blogs. Back home, I use to sit on my phone yes, but not nearly as close as I do now. It’s disgusting how much I have come depend of my phone these days and whenever I go somewhere, I have to have it with me and if I get bored with the people we’re with, I just take my phone out and start scrolling. Not to be disrespectful or anything…but I guess it’s normal for people here to do that. When I first moved here, I was shocked to see how much time people spend on their androids or iPhones. People of all ages on top of it! As early as 18 months!!! Seeing this made me realize I am damaging myself and possibly my child. Family time here is mostly phone time, each person has their phone in their hand and there you have it…that’s socializing! it’s sickening and not in the RuPaul awesome kind of way. You become obsessed and the minute you don’t have your phone in hand, you feel naked and unbalanced. I decided to step on the break and back up a little.
See, I grew up in a home where playing video games or watching TV wasn’t really a thing, we instead spent our weekends reading up books at the library and it was a time we genuinely all looked forward to! I remember reading up all the Noddy, Garfieldand Baby-SittersClub books I could get my hands on. Kinda miss those simple days. Whenever we felt super rebellious, my siblings and I used to watch ice skating for hours on Sundays, cheering up Kurt Browning. I think my sister even had a crush on him! So I thought to myself, why would I want to raise a child that juices up on social media and technology from a young age? Therefore, I have made it my mission, for hubs and I, to spend as much time as possible together outside in nature, especially on his weekend. No phones allowed! Which leads me to today’s post and I am so proud to say that we spent a good 4ish hours outside in nature soaking up some sun. It was absolutely fantastic and hubs and I felt completely re-energized and re-centered.
We went to this town 10km north of Jericho with our lunch to have a picnic in nature. We wanted to spend a good amount of time outside, just enjoying the view and the water river/lake there. Little did we know the water was all dried up; nonetheless we had a bomb time.
We didn’t really go into the city of Al-Auja; we went to the outskirts and sat close to the Bedouins, right under a tree and listen to the birds fly by and the music that was playing from other picnic-ers. I mean the place was pretty simple, but it was enough for us to sit together and enjoy each other’s company and talk about everything and anything. We giggled, we laughed, we relaxed and that to me meant everything! Nothing in the world can replace moments like this one.
I think, as humans, we get so caught up on technology and work and life’s tensions that we forget to take a moment to ourselves and connect with nature and it sucks and it’s sad because we take everything around us for granted. I mean even taking a little moment to smell flowers can change up your mood and bring up your spirits. So slow down, unwind and enjoy nature’s bounties!
13 weeks in now into my pregnancy and I still feel rubbish! I seriously do, I thought that these symptoms would get better, but for some reason, some were a lot worse than before. I wanted to share with you in this post the realities of the first trimester of pregnancy and the things that they don’t tell you in biology class or even at the doctor’s office. When I first found out I was pregnant, I was already 4 weeks in, which was somewhat of a relief, because I had weird headaches and nauseas but never knew what it was. Then after having a crying party, I decided, hey gotta take care of myself and enjoy this process, I mean everyone out there says it’s amazing! So I got to eating healthy and doing my morning yoga and just staying zed and just overall enjoying life with my hubby. Then reality happen and the 5th week in, I felt horrendous and sick all the freaking time!!! So here are the things I wish I knew about the first trimester. Honestly, these are things I wish I knew, everyone’s body is difference and everyone’s pregnancy is different and I salute all of my pregnant ladies out there for having the courage, the will and the power to continue with this journey and for staying strong throughout the whole 9 months. You gals are all my heroes!
♠ Morning sickness ♠
I wish everyone would just be honest about this one and stop freaking calling in it morning sickness!!!! It isn’t morning sickness, it’s all day sickness and yes, it even happens at night and I did have to get out of bed a couple of times to puke my little heart out! I mean it’s just constant, never ending nausea and it’s starting to annoy the hell out of me. I know that making a human inside of you and carrying a life is such a miracle, and don’t get me wrong, I truly feel blessed to be able to create a human inside of me, but damn does this nausea/vomiting thing take a toll on the body. It almost feels like I lost sense of control on my own body and I am purely directed by my raging hormone levels. Some days, I felt insanely weak; I could barely get out of bed. As hard as I tried, I couldn’t find the energy to be physically present for my husband and that made me feel like a failure. I know it was out of my control, but it was a feeling I had and couldn’t brush it off. I cried constantly because I was tired of feeling tired. I wanted to be my little energetic self again. I wanted to eat because I felt hungry all the freaking time. So, between the 5th and 10th week, I felt like I was stuck in a shit storm and couldn’t get out of it. But I was surviving, day in day out, I decided to not think past the present moment and I think that helped me quite a lot. Week 11 and 12 were meh, I had some break days in between the vomiting sessions, but right now I am back to regularly having to visit the toilet. Trust me, I ain’t looking for a pity party, I am just sharing what I went through and I know that other women have it worst and I feel you sisters! You can do this!
♠ Dysgeusia ♠
My doctor didn’t warn me about this bit but I kinda dislike her for it. It’s basically a fancy term to describe the fact that you constantly have a disgusting metal/mineral taste in your mouth and it affects your sense of taste. It was so strong at first; I couldn’t even eat certain spices or even drink mineral water. It’s so unpleasant but it isn’t the worst part of the first trimester, you simply need to constantly suck on mints and not think of it. Apparently it gets better once you pass the first trimester, but I still have it. Some people say it continues throughout the whole pregnancy, but then again, everyone is different. So here’s to hoping that this does end for me soon!!
♠ Increased sense of smell ♠
You can smell from miles away, it’s insane! Your sense of smell is so heightened that the littlest strange smell that you never cared about before will disturb you to bits! I would say that this was a huge issue for me between week 5 and 10 and I felt so bad because I couldn’t even bare my husband’s natural odour. I felt terrible, because it’s no one’s fault but the raging hormones inside me de-balancing everything…but I would basically sit and sleep far away from my husband because I couldn’t stand his smell at all!!! And he was my favourite perfume of all time before the pregnancy. Le boo! But this too passes and now I don’t mind him hugging me.
♠ Fatigue ♠
This uncontrollable feeling of sleep is so new to me. I mean, I was a little bit of an insomniac prior to my pregnancy and would sometimes go about my days on 3 hours of sleep and sometimes no sleep at all. But right now, I want to sleep all the time, anywhere and everywhere basically. It’s an urge I can’t even fight! It’s so weird and bizarre and even if I do end up sleeping a full 8 or sometimes 9 hours, it isn’t enough. I never used to take naps and now I just fully embrace them, because when baby pops, I know I won’t have much time for sleep. Listen to your body and if you’re tired and need to rest, then just do it and don’t even think about feeling guilty, because guilt is just wasted energy. As for the fatigue, sometimes, well I get up and feel like I can conquer the world and other times I wake up and feel like a 99 year old woman. My joints hurts, my bones hurt and my brain hurts. We don’t realize it sometimes, but physical pain completely affects your mental state and if sometimes can hinder the relationships you have with the closest people around it. I wouldn’t go around and say I’m depressed, I am not far down that way, but I’m sad, because I feel like I’m missing out on a lot of quality time with my husband. And to be completely honest, I sometimes feel alone in this, even though it’s not true. If you do have that feeling, know that there are a lot of women out there who share your feelings. So stay strong, you can do this!
♠ Mood swings ♠
Out of nowhere, I would get angry at my husband. So unfair, I know! Sometimes he would just be sitting in his little corner and I would secretly just hate him (not really…but really). Or sometimes, he would just do some of his regular mannerisms (which I never minded before) and it would piss the hell out of me. Then I would pick at him and just argue with him. Luckily my hubby is very patient with me and understands that sometimes I can’t control myself. I started leaving whenever I felt involuntarily bothered and let my husband be my husband and be content in his little bubble. Once I would calm down, I would go back to him and we’d be good again. I think if you’re aware that it’s just hormones, you’ll be able to control yourself and avoid unnecessary arguments or fights.
♠ Weird pains ♠
Your body is obviously preparing itself for carrying a baby and delivering that baby. Your hips will start to expand and your organs move to make room for the growing human inside you. I thought I would only feel physical pain towards the second trimester but it started early on for me. 6 weeks in and I started feeling throbbing pelvic pains, I wouldn’t say they were awesome, but I definitely didn’t mind them. I usually have a great tolerance to pain and this part of the pregnancy doesn’t bother me much. I can totes live with it. There’s also the sciatic nerve that starts to be uncomfortable and the weird aches and pains in your joints. I wanted to be so active, that sometimes I pushed myself to hard and ended up much more tired than I was before. So I would absolutely recommend that enjoy being lazy, because this isn’t the hardest part, the hardest is yet to come. So if you can’t do the dishes for one night, then screw it, don’t just take your time and focus on staying happy and healthy.
♠ Breathlessness ♠
It’s such a funny one, when I was first pregnant and didn’t know about it, that first month, I thought I was getting old and losing shape or that I had smoked one to many shishas with my husband over the summer. The simple task of getting dressed was dreadful, I would be completely out of breath and didn’t understand why…but then when I found out I was preggo, it was explained to me and it all made sense. Going up the stairs can be hassle, but it’s super funny to me because I am such an athletic person and I am not used to it. But like other symptoms, you learn to live with it and live each moment as it comes.
I hope that this post doesn’t sound to negative or too rant-y, but I feel like I needed to share what I felt and how I was disappointed with the expectations versus the realities. The only truth about pregnancies I ever had around me, were my sisters and the freaking movies. My sisters, I am sure, also suffered, but I was much younger and can’t recall much of it, or perhaps, because I was nowhere near having a child of my own, I never cared to take notes. Can we just be completely raw and honest and real about this?! Yes bearing a child is a miracle, but there are untold truths that need to be put into the light and we need to give knowledge to younger women out there that this doesn’t come easy. Movies glamorize the whole process and in my head I thought, yes, I will just be a glow bomb for 9 months and things will be perfect. No they aren’t!!! I want to put it out there and say when I was single, I never thought twice about the truth behind pregnancies and the “side effects” that came along with it. I think it is truly important to stay empathetic and understanding towards pregnant women. They go through a lot of physical changes and it can be daunting on their mental state. So if you have a pregnant woman around you, be supportive and be kind, because she’s creating something beautiful inside and needs all the support she can get!
I remember my momma giving me castor oil to help ease my little constipation when I was a wee child. And I also remember how gross it was having the feeling of oil coat your throat…ugh! I’m scarred for life…just thinking about that makes me want to gag. So yeah, maybe I had a bad experience when I was a kid, but that doesn’t stop me from using Castor oil now. I, in fact, use it to detox once a year…yes, I drink it! Castor oil and hot water make an amazing stomach cleansing supplement. This hepls remove harmful bacteria from the gut and stomach. The harmful bacteria is replaced with health-friendly bacteria that ease digestion and reduce acidity and bloating. I get the organic one from the health shop and you can consume it as long as you make sure it’s food-grade.This little potent oil has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties.
This oil is not only used as a laxative and system booster, it is also used in various cosmetics, soaps, textiles, massage oils, and even medicines. Castor oil has loads of benefits for your skin, hair, and health. I have been using this for a month now, once a week as a mask for my hair before I shower and let me tell you that the results have been amazing. My hair is freaking silky smooth and super healthy. It is no longer dry and parched! I have been using it on my lashes and brows as well. It helps the hair grow and become healthy.
Castor oil is also amazing when it comes to healing skin inflammation that can be caused by sunburns, acne, and dry skin. When applied to the skin, the oil penetrates deeply and stimulates the production of collagen. This, in turn, helps soften and hydrate the skin. It also helps in delaying the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines. Your skin becomes smoother, softer, and younger. You can also treat the fine lines around the eye area by applying the oil on the area and massaging it in slowly.
The benefits of Castor oil are huge and I could keep going for hours about how amazing it has been for me. You can treat scars, reduce pigmentation, hydrate your skin, reduce scarring and the list goes on….You just need to make sure it’s a good quality cold pressed oil and you’re in it to win it.
Try it out and you won’t regret it. But obviously make sure you’re not allergic by doing a small test.
Having breakfast is such a hassle for me and I drag all the time!!! Waking up in the morning and eating right away is super not appealing to me…but since I have to eat to get through my busy days and to maintain good health and body weight, I decided to find something quick and fun to eat/drink.
In this post, I am sharing with you what I usually have for breakfast on the daily; and that’s a super duper delicious smoothie. It’s quick, it’s easy and it’s SUPER filling. You can choose whatever fruit you want and even add veggies to your own preference and taste buds.
These are the ingredients I use:
-Almond Milk: 1/2 Cup
-Coconut Water: 1 1/2 Cup
-Almond Butter: 1 Tsp
-Fruits (anything you like): 1 1/2 cup
-Chia Seeds: 2 Tsp
-Flax Seed: 2 Tsp
You put the fruits (I chose bananas, strawberries and kiwi), the almond butter, the almond milk and coconut water in the blender to mix for 1 or 2 mins until fruits are smooth. Then pour your smoothie in your cup and voila! You’re done. Super simple and easy and let’s not forget amazingly tasty.
The almond milk is a good substitute for those who are lactose intolerant or those who aren’t into milk like I am. It is also beneficial to good health and skin because it has 50 percent of the recommended daily amount of vitamin E, which contains antioxidant properties essential to your skin’s health. It helps in muscle strength and healing because it contains plenty of B vitamins such as iron and riboflavin, both important for muscle growth and healing.
The almond butter has healthy fats and fiber. Almond butter offers cardiovascular benefits because of its fiber and fat content. Each serving of almond butter contains 18 grams of fat, made up primarily of unsaturated fatty acids. These are good fats and they help improve your blood cholesterol levels to combat cardiovascular disease, and also provide energy.
The coconut water is not only rich in essential electrolytes (calcium, magnesium, phosphorous, potassium and sodium), but it also good for good skin and hydration. It not only tastes good but it also adds benefits to your smoothie.
Fruits are obviously a good source of vitamins, energy and all the good stuff the body needs. Depending on the fruits or veggies you decide to use, the benefits will vary.
Once all the those ingredients are mixed and poured into your cup, you can then add the chia seed and the flax seed on the top. The chia seeds are loaded with antioxidants, fibers, Omega-3s and more. Bottom line is the chia seeds are high in quality protein and this aids in weight loss because they can drastically reduce appetite and cravings. The flax seeds are like the chia seeds; where they are full of antioxidants and Omega-3s. But they also help maintain a good digestive system due to the high percentage of fibers and magnesium.
The shake it all and drink it up. It usually keeps me pretty satisfied and full for a couple of hours. I sometimes don’t ever feel the need to nibble between breakfast and lunch.
Hope y’all enjoyed this post and found it helpful. If you are a smoothie/shake junkie like I am, leave a comment below on what you prefer using in your drink.