Category Archives: Family life

Taming my Dog’s Teeth

I placed my phone to charge. An hour later, it was off and couldn’t even power up. “These China stuff will be the end of us” I muttered in disapproval, while inspecting the cable. It was broken in a rather uneven way. This was not a wear and tear situation, no: they were bite marks! “Charlie!” I shouted and turned around only to catch a glimpse of my dog’s tail disappearing behind the door. Barely a day had passed since he ate up a whole tin of margarine. He was getting worse day after day and we had to do something lest he ended up harming himself or completely destroying everything. According to, and, it is important to puppy proof your house especially if you work and have no one around to watch your dog.

Chew this, Chew that, Chew it all!

We needed to stop anticipating our dog’s next move whenever we were out. Did you know that there exists a puppy proof spray that you can use to protect your most valuable items at home? This is just what I need! He seems to have it all planned out. Charlie has chewed up candles, chargers, electric cords, erasers, pencils…once we caught him lying next to my husband’s inhaler, his nose suspiciously resting on it. I’m not sure who between my husband and him was luckier that he didn’t bite into the can.

Safety in Check

We have managed to keep our dog safe from most hazards at home. We got him toys and let him play with the kids so he gets his fun for the day. Every so often he will run off with a sock to sway away, but we ensure he is as safe as possible. Check out to learn other ways you can ensure your puppy lives a long and healthy life. Charlie is on a good path to getting awesome owners. We now need to work out how to keep him from biting our fingers when we offer him treats.

The Arrival of the Youngest of the Mwambi’s

Knowing what lay ahead should perhaps have scared me, but it didn’t. Oh, I wont lie, I did get terrified at first. We all do up until we get tired of carrying well over 10kilos of baby, placenta, waters and colostrum everywhere we go. When you have all the baby items ticked off the list and the question, “Bado?” starts being directed to you, you somehow switch on the ‘READY’ button and wake up each morning, hoping it’s the last with a large belly.

Labouring for days

Week 40 was closing in and I got really concerned that this baby was determined to bake and brown at term. I hadn’t gone beyond 39 weeks with my previous pregnancies and for some reason I expected my third pregnancy would end up similarly. I had mild pains that came and went, but I pushed on with life as usual.

Break at work

Driving 15km to and from work wasn’t so dramatic except for the few times my right leg would cramp or when Braxton Hicks got so intense I had to lift my weight to ease them. At week 39+2days, I was relieved from work and continued my active shenanigans at my kids’ school; sitting at the office with my mom and sister as their office assistant by duress.

39 weeks, 6 days: Did baby forget its time? I was beginning to doubt that the false labour pains were even real. Pregnancy blogs advised I could wait up to 42 weeks and that was nothing short of disheartening for me! I couldn’t take it anymore. I was not only wadding about, standing up now needed assistance and insomnia was my middle name.

Sent Back home at 40 weeks! Lawd!!

We walked into L&D (Labour and delivery) at 11pm on 22nd January. Pains had disappeared and I was embarrassed so I lied that I needed to know the baby was doing okay as movement had reduced. I was due for clinic in a day so I’d take any excuse to get me checked. They checked me, all right, and baby was doing pretty well! “You are dilated at only 2cm, your cervix lies pretty low and its not thinned so go back home and come back when the pain is really intense, like You-cant-speak-through-a-contraction painful.” The labour signs were recited to me and I barely gave an ear. I knew the drill. I just wasn’t too happy about going back home.

Is this it?

4am the following morning found me awake and in terrible pain. I had lost my plug during the check up at the hospital and I knew it wouldn’t be long now. Part of me celebrated, but a larger chunk of my heart was petrified of what lay ahead. Odi Dance, or is it Kanungo…why did I get myself into this…I thought wildly. I needed to stay positive though. “It wont go beyond a night…” I whispered to myself. “All these beautiful things will finally belong to someone. She will be out of me and I can finally sleep on my belly…Yaaaaaaas!” Ouuch!


Painful Contraction.


They were spaced 6 minutes apart and disappeared again when my mom and sis dropped by. They came to cheer me on and ended up with some form of a leach aka me following them through all their errands. I knew I was going back in, only I wanted to hit the 4cm mark when I would.


My sister and I got our nails done.


Yes…through the now reduced-but-still-there contractions. Trust me, when its baby number three, you want to walk into L&D and have them hand you your baby. I would have killed for such a scenario but no; that was never the tale that would be told of the Mwambi’s third.

At last! Oh wait, what?

10:30pm and I was at 4cm no thinning yet and worse, my waters were meconium stained at levels they said were too high for induction or progression. I was given two hours to go about my Odi- Dance before a decision of whether to go CS or normal was made. Nevertheless… I was admitted! Yaaaay! I wasn’t very worried about going CS. Raine pooped in utero as well and she came out good, no meconium inhalation whatsoever. Anna would too. She was a fighter… I could feel it…now!


More painful contractions


We went on counting hours and walking about. Walking really does help, you know. I sent updates to my husband, but assured him we would hack it. They had taken blood samples and asked me to give him my wedding band; I was being prepared for an emergency CS. I knew he wouldn’t take it too well, knowing I have never been under the knife (You never know what can happen when its your first time you know) so I decided against giving him my ring.


Midnight and we were at 6! Aha! “This is very good progress” Doc said. I smiled amidst dry lips. ”So we proceed?” he nodded, and asked that I get something to help my cervix soften. I was handling it well. At 2:50pm, knowing I should be close to 9cm, I got impatient and every contraction was received with despair and lost hope. I became miserable…its what happens when you have been running for the bathroom, pressed to pee and you give up and leak just when you get to the bathroom door. I was tired and in need of redemption.

Then, at 3:30am, 24th of January, Little Ariella came into this world, screaming fiercely and topping the Apgar score for the night. It was finally over; my third and last pregnancy at only 31. Wooohooo! Motherhood, I am ready to face you in totality and with all my energy. Sexy, just watch me get my hottest me back. Wink* Wink*


Hawt Mama Loading

So you are Reeeeally ready to start a Family?

It’s been quite a while and man did I miss blogging! I usually like it when I get the drive to write, lest I indulge and perhaps bore you to death with meaningless gibberish. I was having a few thoughts to myself a while back and realised many people, myself included ended up starting a family with just cues of what is expected of a woman and a man. No one taught us how to live with another human being and have your own little beings, offering answers to every situation and case studies of how it works.


Bridal showers and marital counseling do prepare you, but do they entirely?

Bridal showers do help a great lot except when everyone gives you’re their own experiences and expect you will take their testimonies…forgetting that we don’t all marry similar characters or end up in similar situations in marriage. We all go through challenges and none is ever quite the same as the other. While one couple will battle with childbirth or the lack of it, another will face childlessness and discrimination. While one battles with lack of employment, the next couple will have one spouse not cooperative in budgets and spending and will end up stuck in rut holes earning so much and heading nowhere. We all have unique things that make our marriages unique; we also have those things that make us similar in humanity. Those are what I intend to engage you with today.

Bridal Showers….

When your man Helps Around

When a union is made, we all think we can now have all the fun we had to sneak around to do, and perhaps we do, except we now can’t run from the mess we usually left behind. Deep down a man’s mind he knows he doesn’t need to call the laundry lady anymore or keep burning his fingers putting a meal together. They will smile when you ask for help and they will secretly pray you get yourself organized in time because one day they will not. You may think you are lucky that your man does house chores, only, see how they act when male friends visit… they hop onto the band wagon of being ‘True African Men’ who wouldn’t be caught dead doing a woman’s job. Lets appreciate when they help…trust me our fathers didn’t teach them to wear petticoats or tie lessos when we need help. This is a lesson we are now teaching our sons.


When Women expect too much

Let me promise to tell what goes on in a man’s mind…I am still cracking mine’s head up because he wont make it any easy for me. What I have learnt however is they can only genuinely do what they have watched their father’s do. You will notice that most men who are barely there for their children in a home, chasing them off into their bedrooms to keep out their noise had their own fathers do the same to them. Most men who hit their wives only learnt this from..Erm…the best? A family built on mutual respect, love and care for each other will hardly build up children with a stranger character. A child who grows up watching his father protect his mother from harm will never lay a finger on his own. A man who’s sisters’ taught him to help around the house will never find it hard to get down and dirty helping his wife. Women need to understand the kind of men they get involved with before they commit to them. This will help them get a light image of what to expect from them.

I remember pushing my husband to wake up at night to help me with the baby, back in 2009 when we had our first. It was so easy for my friends’ husbands and they made me think mine fell short if he wouldn’t. This turned out to be frustrating for him, keeping awake most nights and having to work the following day! When I realised I could take more than he could, handle the baby better and multitask easier than he could, I stopped pushing him and worked around myself. He somehow managed to get into my schedule, giving me an hour or two each evening to take a nap while he played with the baby. I realised he offered more when I didn’t ask because he really wanted to be part of our child’s development, only not under duress! There’s more; so much more examples I could give but time does limit and we have so much to catch up with.

The Two-Week-Wait

Trying for a baby? Here are my experience of the two week wait of my last pregnancy on the next post sooner than this one did!. Lots of TMIs on this one but I promise to make it fun!



When a woman becomes a mother

It all starts with an oblivious perception of what motherhood is. “I’m going to be a mother!” It’s pure thrill!…”just like her, or maybe I’ll be just like my mother. Perhaps better, I mean, my mom was a tough nut so I should be better, no?” You just found out you are pregnant and suddenly the world changed view. It looks funny, doesn’t smell any better and my, you suddenly notice the many children around you! “I will now cease from being just me” You fantasize and start picturing yourself as ‘Mama Nani’ and not just Alice anymore…and while to some it’s a terrifying reality, most women lovingly welcome their BFP (Big Fat Positive)

Fitting In


The oblivious journey begins from here with you, reading through baby blogs, week after week and rushing to the obstetrician each time you suspect something isn’t right. Baby movements begin with uncomfortable stitch-like pains between week 18 and 20 and you check into hospital again, scared sh*tless because tot may have accidentally moved into your rib cage and got trapped there.

Phew! You survive the first trimester and begin to enjoy the calm period. You go out with your girls hoping to still fit in, shop for baby stuff and trendy outfits for yourself. Damn! You make pregnancy look so good, all your friends now want to fit in with you! You are rocking it silly and out of nowhere, the pride of your looming status checks in…


I wonder though….


What do our mothers and moms to teens and grown up- children think of new and younger moms? Have you ever thought about it? When they see young moms in parenting blogs claiming to have hacked it in marriage and parenting yet they bag less than 10 years in it. Do they scoff at us? Or perhaps mock? Why wouldn’t these moms find some hobby and share their experiences too?


We really can’t help it, you know…


See, the moment you get pregnant, you suddenly feel as though you have experienced it all, and now know what it is like to carry a child…and by all means, you do…You feel so wise you would buy a crown and walk with a stick if you could. You get your first baby and it’s an occurrence to behold! You can’t wait to put it down in words! So you start a blog and plaster as many photos of your baby as it can hold. Ha! I know I did that! You get your second child and no one can tell you what it is like to be a mother to multiple children.


They are still very young, but it doesn’t matter. You are now a self-proclaimed expert on parenting…I know because I felt like I had made it to the sky, hugged the moon and waved at the sun. Now, what happens when a third child comes and your head won’t grow any bigger? You go quiet and watch first time moms follow your trend, right? Hmm.


I am a culprit!

I am not here to attack young parents, no. I am one myself and I have written all the crazy, embarrassing stuff on my babies too. I am simply trying to show you how crazy, yet sanely normal the changes are that happen to a woman when she becomes a mother.

She suddenly has to grow up, be more responsible and think of others before herself; she has to answer questions she would love to know answers to and has to work harder than she used to keep up with life demands. Funny, we do it all and with a big smile.


So, when a woman becomes a mother…

It’s simply because it’s a joy to be a mother; to have a child is to have someone who loves you with their existence and want to be just like you. You’re their all-time best friend and your presence itself takes away every discomfort they have.

A new mother’s life changes so much she feels as though she was not living before her baby was born. It’s as if her life was meaningless, without purpose and with nothing to look forward to. It’s a pure feeling and one only experience can teach and one no one can ever take away. Whether the baby is a new born, a toddler a pre-schooler or a teen…whether the child didn’t make it past a certain age and whether it is adopted or a surrogate child…motherhood is that feeling of responsibility to a child. The connection that draws you to put their lives ahead of yours. Its a beautiful feeling, whether cut short or lives on. Lets embrace it just as it is.

What Are we teaching Our children?

What goes through your mind when you see a child, running to school, alone in the rain, wearing tattered clothes, a cardigan that must have been used to erase a lot of chalk, sagging socks and a soaking back pack? Do you ever wonder what their parents were thinking when they let them take off like that? Were there parents even around to let them head out that way? Don’t you wonder what they think about life? because it must be a real sonofabitch!

They reflect who you are

What do you think a child will do when you curse at them or others around them? “Stupid Fool,” You say easily even to the defense of your child, but do you ever stop to think that your child absorbs this and will use it on another person? Oh wait; do you know they might even use it on you some day? I see my children playing house and I watch to see how they act my role out. You know I never quite realized how much I walk when I pick a call till I saw my now three-year old walk all over the house looking for a quiet corner to sit and talk. These kids are a reflection of who we are, why lie. She even used her hands to express herself! Then I had to stop my seven year old from kissing my cheek all the time. Do I do that too? Lawd!!

Monkey see, Monkey Do- yeah this pretty much means the same thing…

Now, do you teach your children humility when you are not humble yourself? Do you ask them to apologize to their older siblings when you can’t say sorry for misunderstanding them? Are you teaching them to be responsible or should they pick up, ‘survival for the fittest’ tact through such experiences? Do you know how to share or are you the kind of person who hides meals inside microwaves when a guest shows up? :-/  Hmmm I can almost swear that many parents have no clue they have bad habits that they pass down.

How do you expect your child to speak to their teachers when you attack them aggressively in their presence, shout and threaten to sue them?

Dann right I could ask you a million more questions… what do you want the kids to do with a knife when you hold it up against your wife in a fight? They will most certainly not only use them to chop carrots.

Let’s be better parents

Do you ask that your children be kept away by their mother so they don’t bother your with their noise and gazillion questions? What do you want them to do with their childhood for Pete’s sake? Do you complain a lot about your society and teach your children to keep complaining about it too? Why not show them what they can do to be better? What are we teaching our children really? To survive this world or to make it a better place for their children and grand children in years to come? It’s all up to you, you know.

Investing with your spouse? Depends…

This topic has raised a myriad of questions and shaken the strength of many weak relationships. So it’s clear that many marriages in the 21st century are built on money and selfishness: and lots of it! The only reason people keep their things to themselves is simple! They don’t want to share! On a radio-talk show, someone argued that the reason Indians couples share their investments is because they marry their relatives. We, the rest of the world marry apparently marry complete strangers and if I keep on with this thought I think I will go absolutely bonkers. I wonder though why we marry people we don’t trust. Seriously, why do that?


Where did we go wrong?


If you can truly spend hundreds of thousands to stop people from their lives so they come watch you get a ring on, go ahead and have a child, then another, even worse, lock yourself at night and get all naked and vulnerable…and sleep!! …Next to someone you don’t trust, then I must have landed on the wrong planet. Surely! Did people take life lessons too hard? Is everyone getting too cautious or is this really where we are now? Or is it the movies? Wait, who made Mr. and Mrs. Smith? Perhaps that Simon dude should have been stopped. This is the first movie I remember that made us all wonder if our spouses were in the National Intelligence Service and we were being watched round the clock.

So, the Question…


Would you invest in your spouse? Me? Yes I would. I would rather not judge my husband over all stereotypes or all the mistakes other men make. I give him the benefit and entrust him with the responsibility of not letting me down. If he shows me he is not to be trusted, then that will already tell me he doesn’t have my best interest at heart. Good to know! The next question I’d want to understand would not be if he loves me. We are already married and I should know this by now. So, ‘Are we living a lie or is this a genuine problem?’- Would be my next concern.

Should he trust me with his property and wealth? Yes he should unless I give him a reason not to, which would only mean that he made a mistake marrying me in the first place!


Here is one major problem though

If you got hooked up after wealth was accumulated, whether you are a lady or man, the question, are you a gold digger? Will always linger in your spouse’s mind, and in their relative’s minds… and in your friend’s minds and your mind too. So you should perhaps get married to someone who is willing to accumulate wealth with you preferably from scratch. I sadly can’t think of any other way anyone will trust you with wealth you never took part in accruing. I just can’t.

The Typical Kenyan Man’s Valentine’s Day

13th February all over Kenya…the air is thick with love you can cut it with a knife. Every hawker has stashed away their usual merchandise and are now donning the streets red with plastic flowers and boxed holding meaningless white dolls and form balls. Busines is expected to boom and it perhaps will.

The typical Kenyan male…key word, typical (For the preservation of the genuinely good man) is making a win on his plan to hack valentine’s Day with his wife, a junior colleague and his MWK, Sarah who is obviously oblivious of her position in his life. Let’s call typical man Mike.

On Phone…

Mike: …We will do nyama choma or tumbukiza at a joint famous for benga music bands and Koffi Olomide wanna bes. Firstly though, lets go to work. Be early enough because I’m gonna send you a large box of chocolate, a bottle of wine and an extra large bouquet of flowers; large enough to conjure as much jealousy from your colleagues . Let them see how special you are to someone. Let them burn in misery for not having the same. I will then pick you up at 5:30pm and head out for the big meat fire.

nyam chom

Sarah: Why not  just do a nice dinner? You know? I think its more romantic.

Mike: No. No need for slow jams and dressy garments. No need for red gowns either.

Sarah: But I already bought one that cos…

Mike: Let it go darling. I’m doing no suits myself and I’m sure you don’ want to look like you’re pushing it now, do you?

Sarah: (Snorts and curses under her breadth) Fine.

Mike: 5 O’clock. Be ready.

Sarah: Don’t forget the…(click. Phone disconnects)

MIke: Dials wife’s number

Typical man barely survives the gospel ringback tone till she picks up eventually. He curses under his breath and doesn’t hide his anger.

Mike:Why do you let your phone ring so long. Where were you? I have told you severally that a mobile phone is MOBILE. It’s supposed to be with all times (Rumbles some more)

His wife ignores him and asks what he needed. She is so used to the MOBILE LECTURE she lip syncs on his tag line every other time. ‘I have told you severally that a mobile phone is MOBILE…meh meh meh (eye roll)..” 

Mike: What are you doing tonight?

He doesn’t sound cheerful. Of course he doesn’t. This is just obligatory. He expects she will be busy with church activities. Nevertheless, he has to show her he is available and will only be away because she won’t be in anyways. He gets a little surprised though. She explains that the church visit to the local children’s home has been moved to mid-morning hours and the street kids’ visit lot has been confirmed so she can’t join now. “So, I’ll be free,” she says.

Horrified, Mike stutters and tries to think fast. ‘What to do? What to do!?’ he bites his lip and squirms at the pain he inflicts himself. He had wanted to spend some time with Grace, his sexy assistant at an all- catered- dinner offered by his office.That isn’t going to happen anymore. He knows she will have to bear seeing his wife enjoying all of him. hmmm ‘Maybe it will make Grace jealous,’ he thinks. Mike: ‘Yes! (Now how about that!’)

Wife: Yes what?

Mike: I uhm…just thought of a place we can go. Be ready at 7pm. Dress up and all. I’ll only come home to change. I have a late meet-up with my organising team for the Valentine’s offer at work.

red dress

Wife: (Excited) Great! I will be ready darling. Should I wear red?

Mike: By all means yes! ( He curses under his breath again) You have to look good in front if my friends.

She smiles and secretly plans to make his day one he will never forget.




They Shot at Him

Words may not break bones but they can tear even the strongest heart apart. I pulled my phone from my ear where I held it, pressed the speakerphone button and lay it on the arm of the couch. The man on the other end was still speaking and he seemed to be having the time of his life ruining mine.

“I’m Saitoti” he mocked and I could tell he was smiling, and lying. “Go check the owner of this phone at the Mortuary because he is dead”


5 Minutes beforehand


I sat with my little girls playing before bedtime. I’d had a crazy day at work and I could feel a migraine slowly slipping in. Still I knew my daughters enjoyed ruffling me up so I let them. Suddenly my phone rang. It was my mom. I figured she must have missed me as she calls her children during dinner, or when it rains and thunders too loudly…or when she sees riots on TV. I shushed the noisy girls and said Hello.


My mom was crying and I could barely make out what she was saying. Finally I caught the words ‘police’, ‘My brother, Jay’ and ‘a shooting’. My heart stopped, or nearly did. I didn’t give up though. He could have survived, right? I asked where he’d been shot, because it could have been his head or his heart…and it could have been his leg or hand and nothing too critical. “They shot him in the hand and leg. Please rush to Jamaa Mission Hospital.. He has no family with him, just neighbours. I’m recording a statement. I’ll join you as soon as I can.” She said something to someone she was with that I didn’t hear “where was he when it happened?” my loud mouth questioned. I should have kept quiet because the response had a lot of shouting and commanding involved. I didn’t think it was so serious, perhaps my bro and his friends saw cops approaching and they chose to run which meant if they were shot at, then its got to have been on his heels…yes that made much more sense. I almost laughed at the thought but decided to call my brother and hear it from the horses mouth. The thieves picked the call instead.


“He is dead. I shot him myself.” The self-proclaimed Askari, Saitoti declared. “I saw him going down hahaha! he is no more” My heart sank at the thought of his joy. It was the cruelest thing anyone has ever said to me. I instantly forgave all my High School frenemies and decided this would be my new found hatred- an armed robber.


I met a huge crowd at the hospital’s emergency room. My brother lay at the centre of it all on a bed, strapped with bandages on both his thighs and right hand. This was definitely bad. “Hi there” I greeted and he looked away almost immediately. Tears ran down to his ear and before they could land on the pillow below a young lady holding a small towel caught it and soak it into the towel. I looked closely. She too was quietly weeping but didn’t want her tears to dry.


Then followed the story of that brought everyone together. They had already mugged him, turned and started to leave when one of my brother’s friends shouted “Fake Gun!” That ticked off Jay, who was already wondering what explanation he would give my mom . His phone was barely three days old. Without a second thought he ran and caught up with the only un armed one of the thieves, a kid probably 17 years old. He punched him hard and he fell. The other two rushed back and one placed a gun on his chest. “You say its fake yeah?” he dared jeeringly. Jay put his hand against the barrel and pushed it away from his chest. Agitated, the kid fired twice. The first bullet crashed into the side of his thumb and burnt a hole in his T-shirt as it left, the second got lodged into his index finger. The kid turned and ran, knowing all too well he had attracted attention with the loud bangs. My brother, now filled with adrenalin and anger (That originates from the deep parts of Gusii land) chased after him.


The other armed kid ran back and shot twice at Derrick, Jay’s friend. He shot him on both legs and he fell instantly. Jay stopped and realised it was setried. He tried to politely ask for his ID but that instead earned him one shot though both his legs before the thieves fled into the darkness.


Five gunshots and all of them met flesh and blood. They were rushed to hospital and both went under the knife, and for what? a phone that would probably be sold at Kshs. 1,000? Was it really worth it? Perhaps it was because to a thief 1,000 shillings is so much more relaxing than your life.


My brother is recuperating, thanks to God and through the great doctor who operated on him…so is Derrick. But the psychological trauma may last, the fear of darkness may creep in every so often and the sound of a gunshot may make them jump. Life may just never be the same for them.


Its only nice that I say a big thanks to Nurses Steve and Callisto of Jamaa Hospital for the great kindness they showed us and for allowing me to take a good look at the retrieved bullet.. a pic too… 🙂 scary but hey, such is life right?

Me and the big tall kiddo

Me and the big tall kiddo

Bid sis and the big, tall Kiddo

Bid sis and the big, tall Kiddo




I am Tooth Fairy

Four and a half loose milky teeth ago, my now 5-year-old daughter had her first loose tooth. Losing teeth is one of those experiences parenthood doesn’t prepare you for. We assume we only need to contend with soiled diapers, fevers and the all too famous terrific two’s. Those million mommy blogs hardly talk about us having to pretend to be brave and cruelly pulling out teeth. I contemplated booking Pesh at the dentist’s but wondered how it would be spoken of. I, Mama Pesh- the Bold, took her daughter to a dentist to get a dangling, almost falling tooth to be pinched out.

Squints*  Not so impressive

If only her father was around. This would not be an issue to break my back over.

Proud of you lil one

Proud of you lil one

Then suddenly a brilliant idea came to mind. I could have someone do it at a cost and still not be seen near the dentist! I would not only have created temporary employment for someone, my dear Pesh wouldn’t have to watch her supposed pain reflect on my face! I felt so bright I could feel the burn!


I got it done very well and then, we had a new problem. We got the tooth what do we do with it? Pesh held it tight in her hand so it wouldn’t fall and get lost. “Hun, have you ever heard of tooth fairies?” I asked suddenly excited with my continued brilliance. “Like Thumbelina?” her eyes opened wide with curiosity. “Yes,” I explained “but Thumbelina has brothers and sisters who you don’t see on TV but live around us” Thank God there is no commandment on lying because this would have jetted me straight to hell. Or maybe number 9 is? “When you are so brave like you are right now-, “ I continued wearing my sweetest smile. “They put your name down and come at night to hunt for your tooth.” She suddenly frowned and pulled her hand away hiding the tooth wrapped in her palm under her armpit. “Why?” she whimpered. “Well, so they can reward you!” I hoped she would brighten up…and she did. “If they find your tooth they pick it up and reward you with a coin to buy yourself a gift.” she was elated and brought the tooth back to light.toothfairy 1So together, that night, we hid the tooth under her pillow, said our prayers and my two daughters went to sleep. I sat and watched them both in admiration and remembered back in the day when our brevity during such events were rewarded with stalks of sugarcane we could hardly bite into. At times we were asked to hide the teeth under our pillows and when my parents couldn’t get a coin they would throw the tooth away while we slept and promise us that good luck would follow us. It never occurs to a child why good luck must follow people but hey, our parents had spoken!


I slipped a Kshs 20 coin under the pillow Pesh lay her head on and pulled out the tiny incisor we had placed therein. My husband and I promised to give our children the best childhood we could and this was going to be one of them. That morning Pesh woke up and immediately checked under her pillow. She was thrilled to see a shiny coin in place of her tooth. ‘Looks like you were very brave, the fairies got pleased with you!” I teased, “I never got any coins when I was young.”

“No? What did you find?” Pesh asked wearing pride and content. “Nothing” I replied, almost tasting blunt sugar cane juice in my mouth.

“ I was not as brave as you are,” I went on worried a little about Hell- Jet. “ I cried ever time. Even when I felt no pain. I hope you now I’m proud of you, sweetie,” and a hug sealed this fairy conversation.

Fairy motherThree more times Justin and I ensured we replaced the teeth with coins and had the same excited reaction in the morning. Innocently she knows the fairies are proud of her and she will do everything not to fail them. Now, I can only hope she wont hate it when she discovers there are no real fairies…that her tooth fairy is me and that we did it all  to give her an exciting childhood.

To you Mwambi, the love of my life

The first time I saw you, nine years back was not even face-to-face; it was from the corner of my eye when I walked into class, last, nervous and tip toed to the only empty seat there was. You were so easy to notice. You were the hugest man in that class and if my eyes are not too small or deceiving I was perhaps the tiniest. How ideal right? I remember this day so well as though I knew I would eventually write about it. It was the first time after high school that I ever had a true friend. I trusted you the moment I spoke to you. You were so cool, calm and constantly thought ahead before uttering a word. Not that any of this changed, but I liked sitting next to you to listen to all the silly genius facts you’d talk about. I admired how you spoke so eloquently and even dared to correct my grammar. The nerve you had!



We were so natural. Not once did I dress to impress you and your constant creased shirts totally got to me. Still I loved your company, your wit and the air of joy you spread around. This is the part where I should say if I were told you were my Mr. Right, I wouldn’t believe it…no. Perhaps I would have cried to God to save me from this cocky hardheaded genius that didn’t care how he looked. Nevertheless, because we are in today and things are what they are, I owe God a mighty bear hug for choosing you for me. He knew what I had gone through in my life and thought so kindly to gift me with the one and only person who would heal from my hurt and go down on his knees to help me climb up.


I was in a low place when we decided to hit the road together. Yes I know they say you should give it half a year to heal well (Scoffs and eyeballing going on here) but with you I didn’t need time to be able to give you the best of me. You had seen me in my best and worst. You knew when I was not ok and went out of your way to make me comfortable. You were the only person who saw me when the whole world turned its back on me. You gave me hope of a better life ahead when I was mocked, cheered me up when I would fall ill and always made me laugh about scary stuff. You remembered all my birthdays and made the men I dated look bad. You would wait for me at our bus stage with one giant queen cake and a smile on your face. The most impressive thing was you did this to all the friends you cared about, and to date I see the care in everything you touch.


Now if that isn’t caring enough I wonder what is!


The memories I carry of you are way too many. You are an amazing friend to everyone who knows you. Reliable is possibly a better word to describe you. Each day gets even better knowing we got each other in this crazy world. Its amazing.


I intended to don this page with photos. in fact I probably should have let the pictures tell it all but hey I am a talker…much as it annoys many but you love it 🙂

So here we are years later and I still love it when I look in the mirror and I see you, the shadow that’s constantly by me. My pillar of strength, my best friend and the only man I know I will ever love. You are the reason I glow; the reason I am radiant, and at peace. What more would I ever ask for. Everything else is simply a bonus for me.  I already have a lot with you and I know everything else will place itself in our lives. #TeamMwambi for good!




To Bosses with Hearts For Working Moms

This world does have some good people, probably equally as many as the bad, I wouldn’t quite know. This post wants nothing to do with the bad though. I am here to acclaim those bosses and employers who understand women. Who said being a working mother, and a wife was easy? But heck lets break some glasses in cheer to those who don’t tear their hair away over us women!

I started working when I was 19 and in the nine years I have been in employment I have constantly seen bosses treat juniors, women especially, with a lot of petulance. A few others who can tolerate us make it up by trying to push us to get sexual with them. I have resigned from two jobs in my past because I could not take my boss breaking those invisible respect lines. I have feared working as a mom, feared losing my job and feared not being that somebody in the society… for the very reason that makes me a woman. I am not sure if it is how we react to situations or how we learn to prioritize our families above all else? I have no idea. What I know is my heart feels warm and happy that I have the most understanding boss as my employer and since I can’t send this article to him (Breaking those invisible lines) I would rather dedicate this piece to all great bosses and employers out there.

Tight schedules

Some of us are wired to rush home every evening after work. For fear of being caught in traffic, we sometimes steal the last five minutes to rush and powder our noses then have the clock tick to time with one foot already out the door. I know of a woman who shifts her working hours so she reports in and leaves early. There are bolder mothers who take classes after work. Bravo to you for I cannot bear not to see my children before they sleep.

My 24 hour Job

My 24 hour Job

Office Parties we hardly attend

That and missing trips away from home are just a few of the kind of things that I imagine must annoy you to hell and back. It’s obviously very possible with older children and understanding husbands. I type this with one hand as the other wipes off a nagging tear for a trip to the coast that I have to miss. I instead chose cuddles and nyonyo in the middle of the night.

Pregnancies and their planet

You must really hate us when we suddenly announce that we are expecting a child. In your mind you probably calculate the extra expenditure on our medical covers and the hiring of someone to take our places while on leave. Worry not, to make me sleep well at night I repeat to myself how you must be proud that working for you helps me grow and live and be what I want to be. I even picture you patting yourself on your back proud that through you our family survives… and I repeat it over and over like a mantra.

good boss 3

Our raging hormones while pregnant are something else. We forget what we were typing for you right in the middle of the work, we forget dates, we text you by mistake, we look for a napping spot to sneak in over lunch hour, we walk around with bare feet, put them up when they swell and keep rushing out of meetings to satisfy our churning bellies, we snack all the time… Christ, what is it that we don’t do? Yet you stand us and even trust us with projects. God bless you!

Babies and work

When the babies come we make you pay us three months while we heal and bond with our babies at home. I know I was guilty enough and carried my work home. I hope my boss appreciated this. A belated cheque would do, thank you very much. We stay home and come back looking like strangers wearing masks with our faces…then work a few hours and fly back home. Having added well over ten kilos these bosses must think twice before wanting us to represent their organizations anywhere!

Nannies and No nannies

That call that “The nanny is gone and I am looking for a new one”  or “My child hasd an accident and I must run” must be one you dread most. Thank you for not showing it. You take it in and even offer advice where necessary. If only to offer you some peace, know that we follow in your footsteps to be virtuous bosses to our house managers. Between you and us, even though we trust them our most precious little ones we live on the edge hoping all goes well every time we go to work. Our success also comes from the comfort of knowing all is well back home.

thank you Thank you for letting us run home when there is an emergency with our babies…I mean you could ask us to send their fathers home anyway, but you don’t. Thank you for supporting us through our challenges. Your kind words do reassure too. Thank you for helping us acquire stability in our lives, and to my boss, thank you for being that number one mentor in my life. I always want to excel and some day make someone’s life worth its while too. So to you all wholesome bosses out there, salut!

Smile, Breathe, Live and live Good!

We have all heard that life is what you make of it, how you want to see it and when you want it to be. It is said over and over, everywhere like a mantra, and yes, almost all of us just won’t listen or learn. We live our lives carrying burdens we are well sure we will never offload; we let fear grip us at every chance it gets…jeez! Aren’t we ever so ready to give up on life? enjoy life I once read a book by Stephen King, and he began the chapter by serving me a cold glass of heart wrenching despair. Here was a man who barely survived a drowning episode, lying by the sea under the glare of the scorching sun. He lay unconscious and as he awoke from his persistent lethargy he realized he was still alive and immediately garnered some hope of enduring his ordeal. Being alive for him meant he had yet another chance fight to survive. He had a badly broken leg so the most he could do was crawl under the blistering sun. Just as dusk began to possess the sky, he noticed several large crabs moving towards him. Hunting him…also hoping to survive one more day by making a meal out of something, or someone…like him…well, maybe not all of him, but just a few toes, one of which a large crab successfully ripped off amidst minimal struggle. Where am I headed with this?   In life we often believe our personal problems are the worst anyone has ever experienced. Wait till we see what others are going through  We curse at our bad situations all the time, brooding over issues such as lack of attention, small salaries, falling businesses, broken marriages, children or lack of them. There one too many life frailties we go through but not all of us are ever strong enough to counter them. Many of us break down and cry when problems take a peek at us. Others pant and get panic attacks when these problems start walking our way and when they sit with us, our newscasters get overwhelmed with stories of suicide, crime, drugs and grass-eating fellas. Yes! While you run to church, the mosque or the temple to seek solace, someone somewhere sneaks into a sorcerer’s den for some quick fix too.   We have no time to say formal greetings, not to our problems, no! In fact, we would do anything to make them go away faster than they came. We hardly take time to think through these challenges or what may have caused them to show up, hence we lose a lot of learning time agonizing over them. We forget that problems will always be there and when one goes away, another may soon run along…and while we are busy gawking at this thing called life we remain perched on a fence hawk-eying the other side of life; wishing we could be the ones running those huge companies, taking vacation tours all over the world, wearing all those expensive jewelry and having such happening marriages. Fine, I agree some of us try to seeking advice and help from those with rights to speak. Yes, we try to change the person in the mirror; we try even though most of the time the question that lingers is why me? Why do I have to be the one to suck it up? Why do I have to be the one that will bow down? Why do I have to let them win?’ We try so hard to fight for the best seat in this bus called life when we can enjoy a good view from the window near us.

Life can suck, sure but while it hurls those decays at you, get a grip of yourself or a baseball bat to counter the attacks. Here is how.

  1. Smile. Yes, small as this exercise is, you will discover the gold beneath it. I smiled at the officials at a county council office once and they helped me with my problem, I smiled at the rowdy uneducated tout and he treated me like a lady, I smile at everyone, even strangers when we interact and its awkward. I din’t die. Smile, smile, smile…it makes you feel even better than the person who receives it. It makes you lovable and approachable. It makes the whole world respond to you with glee.
  2. Breathe. Oh yes! Life never sends a memo or a schedule of What To Expect When alive. Whatever it hands you, take it all in and savor it. Enjoy the thought of how better and stronger you will be when it’s all over. Breathe to remain sane.
  3. Live once. Stop acting like you friends. Stop trying to fit into their shoes and buy your own. Stop pleasing people. Don’t step in front of the truck for anyone who is not worth it.  Live your life, maximize your space and watch life happen before your eyes!

*I pick up my champagne flute and take a sip. “Cheers! To life!”

I missed a pill…. he paid the price :D

What do you do when you forget to swallow your pill? I always brag at how good I am at taking this mini-pill that it literary got to my head! I now understand why my fellow mates would rather get jabs on their bums or get the skin on their upper arm broken. Still I remain faithful to no alarms or reminders! This is what happened to me…So I forgot to take my pills for two days straight! I was well into the third day and I was having a ball, eating life with a fork and knife. Life was good! Splendid even! So on day three evening, when I remembered that I had run out of them and was supposed to have bought some more, I panicked. What had gotten into me? Was it carelessness or was I just fed up with routine? Dreadful doesn’t even scratch the casing of what I felt that night; and to think that it was at 10 o’clock and I could not buy some OTC didn’t make the situation any easier. I had to think, and fast! First thing I did was tying my hair up into an ugly bun and wrap it up in one of those stockings all men hate, and that man aint an exception.

He was watching me all this time, a puzzled look replacing the looming enthusiasm on his face. Next, I picked a promotional Tee- shirt I had sneaked away during one of our client’s events and almost literary jumped in. It was big like that. The eyes that watched began to bulge. “What are you doing?” hubby finally couldn’t hold it. I smiled and struggled my way up through the t-shirt that looked like Justin and I could fit in together neck to neck. “I forgot to buy my pills” I responded to which he sighed and said, “Shucks! Ok, so you are rushing to buy some more? I was beginning to wonder who you think you are dressing like that for” I stared right back and my eyes clearly said I was not leaving the house.

“You’re not going out?” the eyes were now on the verge of hanging out of their sockets as he scanned me up and down in dismay. “I missed two days, already. ” I explained. “ I might as well be carrying baby Andrew, but I am not taking any chances with you. I want nothing to do with you for the next seven days.”
He was horror-stricken but seemed to understand my actions. “You mind?” I asked to confirm and he responded negatively. “Well, it’s better than putting a fence in the middle of the bed!” A smile. “ Great idea,” I quipped, “and making it spiky will certainly keep you away! I’ll go fetch some wires. Be back in a bit!” I said and rushed to the bathroom. When I got back, he was asleep, snoring loudly and a safe distance from my side of the bed; pissed but not enough to lose his sleep.

I cry for a little Girl- Cindy

Friends I need your counsel. I sent this letter to a man and his mistress. This is not something I would do as we grow up and let bad habits go. But I have been frustrated for a while now and I need your wise words as I have asked them to pop here and hear what you have to say. I have changed their names for purposes of anonymity.
It starts,

All God’s children have a chance to better people. I hope this letter finds you all well. I know you both know me, but hardly. Let me formally introduce myself. My name is Fanne Mwambi. I am an administrator and researcher in a Public Relations firm, some Radio presenters like calling me a HR consultant when I do radio interviews for them. I am also a writer with a local newspaper. Guess what I write about marriage and relationships! I am also a blogger and very soon will be an entrepreneur. In all these I always ask God not to let me forget where I have come from and what is most important in my life; my husband and two daughters.

I am a relationship therapist enthusiast and I coach young marriages and relationships. Its funny that God had to bring you wife and child to us before you two completely destroyed them. Brief history…I had an experience with men who had a lot of money… but not easy money like you Mr. This was money they worked very hard for. My little story is a bit different but I hope you can pick up some lessons. The main difference, Shirleen*, was I never had men who belonged to other women. That is being greedy, you know. Still it was not easy. I was picked from college every day and dropped home. I bought clothes from Amsterdam and the Emirates (Well still import stuff but now with my own money!) I never bought a phone in a local shop in Kenya. But when I was in too deep, true colours came out. Shirleen* this is for you. These men will never work hard to get rich only to spend it all on you. Oh no darling. They have skills they use to make sure they get the cheapest sex from you. It is called the horse and carrot game. The horse will never get the carrot…but it will keep following the promise to get it. I dated several men before Justin and all were the same. They saw women as objects, trophies, weaklings, less human and punching bags. So I vowed to be an independent woman and to get a man who would like to work hard with me and grow rich with me. I found him and we have always loved each other in poverty and in riches. We respect each other and never let anyone or anything come between us especially money. Oh that’s unless you kill him and take all the money, which is what many materialistic women like you do anyway.
Tim*, when we got a call to help you settle in Nairobi, we were scared, because you were a stranger. But we didn’t say no. We welcomed you into our home, and tried to make you comfortable. We wanted you to get the best experience in Nairobi so you don’t suffer here. Truly if you were a good man, you would have let us go immediately if you knew you would bring us such sadness to our family. Instead you thought since my husband was jobless, maybe he was desperate. So you pretended to help, even promised him heaven…. What you didn’t know is we live in Nairobi and here there are no free things. Slowly we realized you were just a big liar. Still my husband volunteered to help you and planned to leave as soon as you were ok. The kind of business you want to do wants a very honest person. Not a liar. I will tell you for free that suppliers can mess you up if you lie. Anyway. Aside from that you told very many lies, blaming my husband for the many mistakes you made. Yet you said you trusted him. I was shocked when your wife asked my husband why he recommended a fake lawyer. My husband is the most respectful, loyal and honest man I know and for you to taint his name like that is not only shaming but also disrespectful.

Despite your bad treatment we kept the respect. Jesus! it breaks my heart that a woman can do this to a fellow woman. How foolish can anyone be to allow a man to treat her with such disrespect? If I were someone’s mpango wa kando and the most evil woman on earth, I would never sleep in a matrimonial bed. If this man has so much money then he can get me my own place. Its a curse to yourself, your family. It’s a curse to your culture! But no! Shirleen* has no morals she accepts Tim* to treat her like trash, sneaking into the house and sleeping in another woman’s bed. Hahahaha! You look funny sneaking around asking the cleaners for updates around the house.

THIS WAS NONE OF MY BUSINESS until I met young Cindy*, a very beautiful but disturbed girl. She likes it when I call her Baby Girl. She has lost trust in people because she is scared the people she cares for will leave her. Shirleen*, if you see this little girl, you will understand what I am saying because one day you and I were just like her, looking for people to trust. Slowly she will grow up to hate men. One day she will know her father does not value a woman and if she tries to have a relationship with a man, that man will treat her the same way her mother has been treated. When I saw this coming, I made it my business.

I thought about going to children’s court and sue this man who talks so much of God and treats the mother of his child so badly. I realized the charges are many, Abandonment, neglect, … and the mother of all charges is getting this young mother pregnant while she is underage. Cindy’s mom knew all this. By the way just because she keeps quiet a lot doesn’t mean she is stupid. This woman is intelligent and she is going places. Anyway the idea to sue will work if she wants to sue, but that is her decision not mine.
You two have a history, and a very sad one. Tim*, I am still trying to imagine how you sleep at night. How do you have peace when the only person who was with you when you were nothing, is away from you? Many people who brag the way you do have not gone through problems. But you Tim* have no excuse. And you can do better than that. I told Cindy’s mom we should all go for a vacation, the four of us; she and you…Justin and I for a romantic vacation. This is usually the first step to making a relationship work… but she told me no, that Tim* is no longer the poor man she fell in love with. Saying I love you is a problem. Tim*, how do you love her when you tell her not to follow you once she is in Nairobi? Why do you call someone your wife and you are not a husband to her? You ask her to respect you when you don’t respect her? I know many men have mpango wa kandos, but you are the 1st one to bring this mpango into your wife’s house. That is just wrong. Goodness? What kind of a heart do you have? You act like you have been bewitched! People say ‘Kukaliwa chapatti’ ama? Shirleen*? Have you? If yes then one day hio dawa itaisha tu.

I pray one day when your eyes open, because they will. And when you lose all your money, because you will… (You know God is a jealous God…he has seen what you are when he gives you money so he will take it away and your wife will have a chance to be rich) I pray when this time comes you will not regret losing the people who are supposed to be number 1 in your heart.

Can you fight with some love, please?

We fight, I fight, Jesus! I curse! we almost want to stab each other at some point. We hate those we love the most because we love them that much. However there are things, a many that we forget. Fights in relationships are inevitable. Fights, they say are healthy, in fact, the more you fight, the more you understand each other. The more you fight, the better you get when you make up! I am struggling to keep the thought off the next thing that rhythmically comes to mind…the more you fight, the better you get at it! Oh my, that’s evil! This is however not how we feel in that instance when a fight starts. Its systematic, often kicks off with a stupid word or grunt that we usually regret to have said later…that one cotton-picking word that just sets the whole place ablaze. (Forgive me, I got some rub-off from my favourite writer) From what I know and have seen in the news , with my neighbours and with my husband, it always starts with a bad mood followed by a wistful feeling to quarrel.

Mr. and Mrs. Dog

This is how it starts with us, and exactly how it started at my neighbours’ despite frantic efforts to talk in low tones. I contemplated singing a loud misplaced song, one kind of zilizopendwa that they like playing so loudly on weekends making us unwillingly nod rhythmically to the tunes even when our minds want out of the tunes. couple-fightmy intention would probably be in an effort to make them realize that whatever it is may not really be worth it. Still, I remembered how that wistful feeling must pass before any reasonable thoughts are reached. So I listened. “Woman, did you just call me a dog? Me; your husband? A dog?” the man sluggishly spoke. Clearly he had had enough to make his tongue heavy. Wow, that was wrong, I thought. She didn’t feel wrong though, “ You come in here all drunk at this time of the night and won’t let me sleep! Yet I will leave you here snoring like a train with a broken engine in the morning!” Ouch! I thought. She wasn’t making this any better. The guy, drunk and sloppy seemed to struggle to get his balance, which he lost anyway and hit something, that went sprawling to the floor. “You called me what?” he muttered clearly struggling to focus on the latter insult. He would deal with the train one later.

Socks and matchboxes

The dog punched his wife somewhere near her mouth, as the next words that came out of her were, “Oh, what’s wrong with you?” But they sounded more like Oh! hats hang ith yu! A struggle ensued and the dog proved himself stronger than Mrs. Dog who eventually conformed into begging him to calm down so they don’t let the neighbours hear them. We heard from the part where you called him a dog! I was tempted to say, instead I checked to make sure al my girls, Viv, included were not party to my eavesdropping. As I did so, I couldn’t help but think of all the tiny things that have made Justin and I fight almost to hell and back; As a smoker, he would steal my matchboxes, use them and place them in places he would not remember later(in his pocket, on the TV counter, in his other pocket or on my dresser). He still throws his socks and misses the laundry basket… and sometimes even when he cant tell me a juicy story with all the juice in it I cause fire, but a dog? No, I would never call him that.