July 15, 2019

Aliens in America by Tambari W

My sister, Tambari, started shooting a photography series called 'Aliens in America.' Aliens in America is a photography concept by Tambari Wikina whereby groups of immigrants and children of immigrants are showcased within the spaces of America. It is her effort to show that America was built on immigration and that these immigrants are just continuing the story of what makes America great. They are adding to society not taking away.

July 12, 2019

Berry Lovely Links

I've got that Friday feeling!!!!!!!!

If you follow me on Instagram @BerryDakara, then you most likely saw my dancing/twerking post this morning. I'm extremely glad it's Friday and that I have nothing planned this weekend! I need to REST and RESET!!!!

What are your plans this weekend?


July 10, 2019

Mummy and Me: Dashiki

I've got another set of Mummy and Me photos to share with you today! I had a different shoot to share, but I can't find the memory card that has those photos... so sad. However, we can make do with this new set of "And co" photos! For this photo shoot, Cocoa and I wore African dashikis! Are there non-African dashikis, come to think of it? Where do dashikis really come from? See here if you're interested.


July 8, 2019

Don't Give Up!

Where would you be in life right now if you hadn't quit or given up on one thing or another? If you had believed in yourself and had the confidence to see things through? If you fought past obstacles instead of deciding they were too hard?

July 5, 2019

Berry Lovely Links

Happy Friday!

If you're in the US, I hope you enjoyed Independence Day yesterday. Check out my Instagram stories to see highlights of our fun BBQ with my family yesterday. As usual, I have a nice selection of articles for you to read this weekend. BUT the first thing you want to do is listen to the newest episode of Mommy Oyoyo podcast! The topic is What NOT to Say to Someone who is Trying to Conceive.


July 1, 2019

LIFE LATELY: JUNE 2019

Hello!!!!!

Happy July! We're officially in the second half of the year. How are you feeling about it? As usual, here I am with my update of the previous month. You can keep up with my monthly updates here.

June 28, 2019

Berry Lovely Links

Happy Happy Friday!

It's been a week! But hey, June's over in just 2 days and then we'll be smack dab into the second half of the year, and Q3! How have you done on your goals so far? I hope well. If not, take a look at my Goal Getter Guide to help you smash the rest of the year - it's not too late!

June 26, 2019

Mommy Oyoyo Podcast

I did something new!!! Something that has been on my mind since last year actually. I had this idea (like many other ideas), and spent so much time wondering if I could execute it, if I should execute it. I thought about it, over-analyzed, "did research," and did everything doable without actually doing much about it. Well, last week, I decided to JUST DO IT! And I'm pleased to announce my new baby...

June 21, 2019

Berry Lovely Links

Why is June flying by so quickly?!?!?!? Am I the only one that feels that way? I feel like the month needs to slow down a little bit, so I can catch my breath for a few days! BTW thanks to everyone who wished my Cocoa Bean a Happy Birthday. She enjoyed her day, like other days, and I'm just so thankful to be her mummy!

I hope you've had a good week though, and I hope you enjoy the links from this week.

June 19, 2019

Happy Birthday Cocoa!

Happy Birthday to the most beautiful Cocoa girl!!!



June 18, 2019

Start Where You Are

If you follow me on Instagram (@BerryDakara), then you likely saw this post last week. We had a guest preacher at our church whose message was on a little known character from the Bible - Shamgar. In Judges 3:31, he was mentioned for killing 600 men and helping to save Israel. The sermon was centered on using the resources available to you to just get started.

June 14, 2019

Berry Lovely Links

Happy Friday!

I hope you had a lovely week, and wish you a lovelier weekend! Hugs and kisses from moi.



June 12, 2019

When You Gain Weight

Ugh! Who else is tired of losing weight, then gaining it, then losing and gaining it again?! If not you, I certainly am. It's been almost two years since I gave birth to Cocoa, and even though I was not "trying" to snap-back quickly, I lost a good amount of weight. I got as far as 10 pounds below my pre-pregnancy weight at a point, and I won't lie, I felt pretty proud of myself. I even stocked my closet with clothes to fit my smaller size. All was honky dory until the later part of last year...


June 10, 2019

Managing Expectations

Good Monday Morning!

It's going to be a short one today, but the topic of managing one's expectations has been on my mind for a little while. If you read my birthday post this year, then you know that I didn't really have any expectations whatsoever, and ended up being pleasantly surprised. The calls and messages from well-wishers, and hanging with my family over several days made me feel really loved and appreciated. I did have one very tiny expectation that was dashed, and kinda reinforced my belief that it's better to have low or no expectations in a bid to avoid getting disappointed.


June 7, 2019

Berry Lovely Links

Thank God for the end of another work week. I hope you had a good one. I'm happy for the weekend, even though it's going to be filled with rain! It's not so bad, because we haven't had rain in a while and drought was beginning to set in. What's the weather like on your end? I hope you take time out this weekend to read up on some of the links I've curated for your viewing pleasure :)


June 5, 2019

Mummy and Me: Dornubari's Apparel

Before I got pregnant with Cocoa, I knew I wanted to have two children - a boy and a girl. I didn't think it out loud, but I think I hoped that my first child would be a girl. I didn't have any particular reasons though. Maybe because I'm the first child? Anyway, some of the things I looked forward to when I knew I would have a daughter included being Mummy-Daughter best friends, playing with makeup (which she does already), and also dressing alike in matching Mummy and Me outfits! Now, my husband does not like to dress in matching outfits, but I can do what I want with my daughter in that regard, and I got another chance with Dornubari's Apparel (see our Christmas photos for the first time we had a Mummy and Me shoot)!
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June 3, 2019

Life Lately: May 2019

Welcome to June!

May went by so quickly, didn't it? I feel like I just wrote the April Life Lately post just a few days ago. Well, thank God for June because it's Cocoa's birthday in two weeks! I'm not having a party or anything, but hopefully will have some photos to share when the time comes. On that note, let's find out what's been happening in my life, aye?


May 31, 2019

Berry Lovely Links

Happy Friday and end of the month!!!

Is it me or did May fly by? Can you guys believe Cocoa is going to be TWO YEARS OLD in just 2.5 weeks? My baby is not a baby anymore!!! I mean, she is but she's not! Anyway, thanks to everyone who wished me a Happy Birthday on Wednesday. I had zero expectations and ended up having a nice day. Sending love, kisses and hugs from my big bosom to you! Enjoy the links this weekend.


May 29, 2019

WCW May 2019: Berry Dakara

Happy Birthday to me!

I have normally been that person who enjoys her birthday and draws attention to it. Last year, I didn't want to celebrate. As a matter of fact, I turned off my phone because I didn't want to speak to anyone. I put up a post on Instagram because I was completing a 31-day challenge, but apart from that, didn't want to make a big deal out of my birthday. I already felt the same thought coming along this year and decided to stop it in its tracks. As you know, I feature a woman I'm inspired by on the last Wednesday of every month for my WCW series. This month I have decided to do something different and feature myself.

May 27, 2019

Happy Childrens Day!

Today, May 27th is Childrens' Day in Nigeria. No matter where I am in the world, I will always acknowledge the holiday inwardly at the very least. I always enjoyed Childrens Day, for a few reasons - it was a school-free holiday, and it's two days before my birthday. In my mind, they should have just added May 28th into the fray so I could have 3 days off! Anyway, today I'd like to share a few photos of Cocoa (my daughter, if you're new to the blog). She's a full blown toddler now (with tantrums to boot), and even though she's almost 2 years old, I still catch myself looking at her and wondering in amazement at God's grace in my life!


May 24, 2019

Berry Lovely Links

Happy Friday!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Do you guys follow IAmZoie on Instagram? I don't but every now and then I go to his profile to watch his "IT'S FRIIIIIIIIIIIDAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY" twerking videos. They're just hilarious to me. Anyway, thank goodness for the end of another week and for a holiday this Monday (and my birthday next week too). I hope you have a great weekend and enjoy some of the links I curated this week. I won't tell you which one was my favorite to read, but tell me yours :)


May 20, 2019

Three Ways to Style an Ankara Peplum Belt

Happy Monday!

Do you guys remember when peplum belts were all the rage?! Wait, was that peplum belts or just the peplum silhouette in general? I can't remember. Either way, lots of women were very happy to wear peplum anything because it was trendy at the time, and also helped to conceal or hide not-so-flat tummies. I remember loving the trend too, but never thought about getting a peplum belt. I know that ankara peplum belts have been on the scene for a while, but it was not until this year that I started trying them out, and today I want to share three ways I styled my ankara peplum belt.


May 17, 2019

Berry Lovely Links

Thank God for another Friday!

Is it me or is May flying by really quickly?! I feel like April dragged quite a bit and I wasn't too happy about it, but I'm also not happy that May's going by so fast either. Do you see us human beings? We're never satisfied in life, LOL. Anyway, I hope you're having a good May so far. I have a pretty busy weekend planned - what are you going to be up to? I hope one thing on your To Do list this weekend is reading along with some of these links I have curated for your reading pleasure. Enjoy!

May 15, 2019

Mum Guilt and How to Get Over It - Part 2

Hey there!

In my last post, I shared a few ways that I have experienced Mum Guilt since becoming a mother. As a refresher, it is generally defined as "the feeling of guilt, doubt, anxiousness or uncertainty experienced by mothers when they worry they're failing or falling short of expectations in some way." Like I said in that post, a lot of it is in our heads and not based on facts. Today I want to complete the things that have caused me Mum Guilt. In the first post, I covered Breastfeeding, Career, Hair Care, Health and Finances. Check out the other five things below and how I have tried to get over them.


May 13, 2019

Mum Guilt and How to Get Over It - Part 1

Happy Belated Mothers Day!

I typically would put up a Mothers Day post, but missed out on it this year - I'm really trying to find the best ways to manage my time. I had a wonderful weekend with my family and I'll share photos of Cocoa and I in our Mummy and Me outfits soon enough. In the meantime though, I want to talk about a topic that's been on my mind for a little while: MUM GUILT.

I never thought about mum guilt before I got pregnant and had Cocoa. No wait, that's not true. I had a minor guilt trip for a few minutes one day when almost everything on the news was bad, and I wondered whether it was a good thing to bring a child into such a flawed world. That's not exactly mum guilt though. According to ActiveKids.com, Mum Guilt is defined as, "the feeling of guilt, doubt, anxiousness or uncertainty experienced by mothers when they worry they're failing or falling short of expectations in some way."

I don't think there is any mother on this earth who has not had Mum Guilt in one way or another, or at several points in motherhood. Sometimes it can be debilitating and make you feel shameful and unworthy, and like a failure. But the truth is, in my experience, a lot of it is unfounded and baseless and can be overcome. I'm going to share some of the areas in which I have experience Mum Guilt and what helped me get over it.


May 10, 2019

Berry Lovely Links

Hey there!

This weekend has been so crazy!!!!! I thought I would have some downtime this week, but it's been very busy and I just want to go home and sleep. Does anyone want to do my work for me, but I still get paid? For just 3 months? Pretty please!

I hope you have a pretty weekend. Enjoy the links I have for ya!


May 3, 2019

Berry Lovely Links

Happy May!!!!!

I feel like May is already flying by. We're already three days in and I'm struggling to catch up to April. I hope you're all doing well. If you're on Instagram or Facebook, join @TeaWithCubes for our live weekly talk show (4pm EST) - we're talking about African Traditions vs Modernity - what traditions should go, and what should stay; how do we balance them? I've got some nice links up for some light weekend reading, and there will definitely be 3 blog posts next week - and hopefully a video as well.


April 30, 2019

WCW April 2019: Titi Sule



Better late than never!

This post should have gone up last week, but since we're still in April, I'm going to go ahead and put up the April WCW feature. As you know, my Woman Crush Wednesday series features women that I am inspired by.

I have known Titi for around a decade now. Funny enough, I know her through the same website where I met my March WCW, Sheila - Naija Ryders! And what's even more funny is I had lunch today with a group of Nigerians at work and ran into a guy I also know from Naija Ryders! We are plenty o.

Anyway, the reason why I am inspired by Titi is that she dabbles in a lot of different things, while holding down a job, and raising her two boys with her husband. Titi is an author, blogger, has a podcast, is on the board of a non-profit organization (Access2Success), amongst other things. What excites me the most is her children's book series, Zaki and Zoltan, who are Nigerian boys that travel and explore different countries and cultures. Titi recently launched the animated series that you can subscribe to on Youtube! She's one of the first people who asked me if I ever plan to write a book, and I'm still here just looking cos what can I possibly write about? I hope you enjoy this feature.


April 29, 2019

Writers Block is a Rhymes-With-Witch

GUYS!!!

I am having the worst case of writers block ever! Okay, not ever. But honestly, I'm stumped. I don't know what to write about - that's why I have not been posting. I think it's a mix of writers block and if I'm being honest, laziness or lack of discipline. The plan was to use my weekends to plan out content for the blog - usually about 2 weeks in advance. At the start of the year, I actually had my blog content planned out for the first two months! And now, here I am. Blabbing. Looking at a whole page of nothing. Since I have nothing to write right now, I'm going to post some self portraits I shot.

 

April 19, 2019

Berry Lovely Links

Happy Easter everyone!

I can't write much as I'm currently taking a little time to rest. But I hope you enjoy your long holiday weekend. And if you're in the US like me, sorry :( I don't get why we don't have at least Good Friday off.. Anyway, I have an interesting mix of links for you this weekend. I hope you enjoy them.

April 15, 2019

Berry Dakara Blog Survey 2019 Results

The results of my Blog Survey are finally here! I really wanted to get at least 30 responses, but only 29 answered so I'm just going to go with it and say thank you very much to the 29 of you that put in your time to give me much needed feedback! You're beyond awesome and I'm very grateful. The goal of the survey was to get your thoughts, opinions on the blog currently, what you'd like to see more of, and just for me to get a better idea of my audience.



April 12, 2019

Berry Lovely Links

Hi there!!!!!

How's your week been? I hope you had a great one. If you see this post today (as in Friday), check out the question I asked on my Instagram stories - about Meghan Markle aka Duchess of Sussex's aka Cousin Meg's decision to keep her birth plan private. What are your thoughts seeing as she's a public figure, but giving birth is a private thing?

I hope you enjoy the links for your weekend read :)

April 11, 2019

On Being A Drama Queen

"There she goes again. The Drama Queen is here."

"Gosh, what is it again? You too like drama!"

"You're so dramatic!"

Have you ever had any of those phrases or similar said about you? Do people call you a drama queen because they believe you tend to overreact to situations? Does the label 'Drama Queen' offend you or on the contrary, make you feel a little bit empowered?

April 8, 2019

10 Ways to Use Your Break Time Productively

Hi there,

THANK GOD IT'S MONDAY!!! Did I actually say that? I typically dread Mondays and can't wait for Fridays, but today I'm just choosing to be thankful for a new work week. Speaking of work, I thought it would be nice to share some ways to be productive during your down times - whether it's your break or lunch time. Some breaks are shorter than others - they can range from 15 minutes to 1 hour long. And you can use that time wisely - I definitely do. Check out some of the ways you can maximize your break time.

April 5, 2019

Berry Lovely Links

Thank God for another Friday and another weekend. I hope I have a very productive weekend - hosting one of my church's Bible Study groups, taking my car to get the emissions tested, editing some product photography and taking more photos of other products, cleaning the house, taking Cocoa out, etc. Eeeek!!! Does someone want to come to Atlanta for the weekend and be my unpaid personal assistant? You'll get lots of hugs and cuddles from Cocoa!

I hope you have a great weekend and get to read some of the articles I came across online.

April 3, 2019

When Life Gives You Lemons, Wear Your Iro and Buba

Everyone knows the saying, "When life gives you lemons, make lemonade." That's all well and good, and I understand that the premise behind it is to make the best out of bad situations. A lot of times, it can be easy to wallow in the negatives of life, so it makes sense to try and shoot for optimism and positivity. Sometimes though, life gives you lemons back to back to back to back and I don't care how much you like lemonade, you can get tired of it.

April 1, 2019

The End

I was hoping that it would not come to this, but I've really reached the end of my rope. My blog traffic is not growing, I'm losing followers on social media, Little Miss Cocoa's sleep had regressed so much that I don't have time to do anything anymore, my job search has yielded nothing, my personal life is in shambles and I'm just tired. And so, it really pains me to announce that this will be my last post on this blog. I have decided that I am shutting down Berry Dakara Blog, my Youtube channel, and other pages pertaining to this blog. I have not decided if I will delete everything completely, or leave them up as a reminder of everything I accomplished with it. I do want to say thanks to every single person that has ever read a blog post, and even more thanks to those who have left at least one comment. I love you all and I pray that God blesses you and yours. Take care...


March 29, 2019

Berry Lovely Links

How is March over already?!?!?!? It feels like the month started two days ago and now we're about to be done with Q1! How have you been doing with your goals for the year? You can use my Goal Getter Guide to track your goals and see how well you've done with them!

I hope you have a nice weekend ahead of you, and I hope you enjoy the links I have curated for your pleasure.


March 27, 2019

WCW March 2019 - Sheila Ojei

Happy Wednesday everyone, and yay for another Woman Crush Wednesday feature! You can check out my other WCW Features here. My aim is to celebrate women that I'm inspired by. Today's post features someone I've known for maybe 10 years or a little longer. We were both on the Naija Ryders forum waaaaaay back when, and I don't quite remember when I met Sheila face to face. We have related through the years as bloggers, fellow IJGBs (I-Just-Got-Backs), etc. I mentioned her podcast as one of my favorites in this post. Sheila does A LOT! As in, she's an executive, a blogger, writer, actress (my mum said since she does voice overs in commercials, it means she's an Actress), and more! And she does all this while raising her daughter! I hope you enjoy her responses and glean some wisdom from her.


March 22, 2019

Berry Lovely Links

Hello darln's!

I'm really sorry about my impromptu break from blogging this week, but I needed the time off. I've had quite a bit on my mind and thinking about my life and what route I want things to go. There might be some changes soon - I'll let you know though. I hope you had a pretty week and look forward to a restful weekend. I've found myself missing certain elements of Nigeria - my friends there, food, and having my own place. But mostly, small chops is what I miss :( And shawarma. Ah well. I hope you enjoy these six links from around the interwebs.

March 15, 2019

Berry Lovely Links

TGIF!

No long note today. Just thank God it's Friday. March seems to be flying just like February did. I'm in the middle of a very interesting book, after having just finished one earlier this week. I might finish 4 books this month as well - and I wonder why my Youtube channel is not moving (shakes head). Anyway, enjoy the links I have for you today. Number 4 is a VERY VERY good one!

March 13, 2019

5 Great Podcasts You Should Subscribe To

Hey there!

It's Hump Day Wednesday and I've been meaning to share my favorite podcasts that I'm subscribed to and listen to regularly. I enjoy listening to podcasts on my drive to and from work, as they provide me with information, inspiration and sometimes just plain old entertainment. I am listing only 5 right now, but I have a larger number of podcasts I am currently subscribed to, and will share those in later posts.

March 11, 2019

Two Affirmations to Help You Gain More Confidence and be Kind to Yourself

Hi everyone,

I hope you had a splendid weekend. Mine was not too bad. I could and should have been more productive but instead took a lot of time to rest. I wish I had balanced the R&R with more productivity, but that's alright. I did accomplish two or three things, so I wasn't a complete bum - and this is what leads me to share my post today. Recognizing and acknowledging the little things to help you increase your confidence.


March 8, 2019

Berry Lovely Links

Guys,

I've had such a hard week! I thought last week was bad, this one came with even more challenges. I posted on my Instagram Stories yesterday that some seasons, it just seems like it's one thing after another - and you actually get so tired that you don't even have the energy to care. LOL. That's me right now. Like WHATEVER! Keep throwing the arrows, I can't kill myself. With that being said, how about some fun links for ya?

March 4, 2019

Life Lately: February 2019

Can we all breathe a sigh of relief for the end of the whirlwind month of February? It was like February started and finished in 3 days! I for one, am happy it's gone and I hope March slows things down a little bit. It doesn't seem like it will though, because it's already the 4th and March just started yesterday! What gives?! Anyways, here's my life update for February. I hope you share yours with me in the comments.

March 1, 2019

Berry Lovely Links

It's Friiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiday!!!!

Listen, I had the most Mondayest Thursday yesterday. In fact, I feel like I've had 5 Mondays in a row, and I can't thank God enough that it's weekend! I really need a break. I need some Me Time. I need to regroup. I need to reorient my mind and do some mental self-care. I need to look over my goals and really prioritize what's important to me and what I can let go of. I need to do ABSOLUTELY NOTHING for 2 days - no cleaning, no chores, no work, no blogging, no screen time, etc. *Phew* I'm glad I got that out. Have you ever felt like this? I almost feel like this is what happens before a mental breakdown, if you don't actively take a break. Anyways, I'll work on the break bit. Here's some light reading for you this weekend.

February 27, 2019

WCW - February - The Ufuoma

Woot woot, it's WCW - February edition! As you know, this was a series I started two years ago, but stopped for various reasons. I restarted in January of this year (see Amama Ekwere's post here) and this month, I am featuring a woman whose Instagram feed will have you wondering what you're doing with your life. I can't remember how I first came across Ufuoma - it might have been on another blog - but I remember the first time I really paid attention. She had traveled to Cuba with a friend and her photos were being liked and retweeted all over Twitter. First of all, I have a desire to visit Cuba one day. Secondly, I fell in love with her photos - they were bright, colorful, vibrant, and I appreciated that Ufuoma and her friend wore their ankara clothes in glorious splendor! 

I have followed her online since then, and I am inspired by her love of God, travel, and people. Without further ado, let's hear a little bit about Ufuoma.



February 25, 2019

The Balancing Act of Life

Hello, and Happy Monday to ya!

How was your weekend? I hope you enjoyed it. Can I be really honest with you guys? I almost didn't have a post for you today. For the past 2 months, most of my posts have been ready in advance, and scheduled to drop at 12am Atlanta time on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. I had a surge or burst of creativity and content at the end of last year through the beginning of this year, and I had two months worth of content to post. And to be honest, I have more content planned for March, but the actual writing of the posts seem to have gotten away from me. Why? Because of Life's Balancing Act.

February 22, 2019

Berry Lovely Links

Thank God It's Friday!

Does anyone else feel like February has pretty much flown by? And my goodness, there's so much going on - Jussie Smollet's case, Nigerian elections, R Kelly's been indicted, Khloe's sister's best friend hooked up with her partner, etc. I just want to turn off all news, go to a beach retreat somewhere and sleep, eat, listen to the water for the next 3 months! How are YOU doing?



February 20, 2019

8 Ways to Reduce Costs and Expenses to Stay Within Budget

MONEY MONEY MONEY!!! A lot of us worry about money - whether we have enough, are saving enough, are spending enough (or too much), etc. If you have noticed, there has been a huge spike in topics of Personal Finance across the internet. Topics from Budgeting to Investing to Saving to Debt Repayment, and more are getting big draws. I've shared some of my Money experiences with you myself, and someone who answered the 2019 Berry Dakara Blog Survey said they'd like to read more blog posts about money. Because I care about you guys and take your suggestions for blog posts, (like with the Things I Learned about Pregnancy), here are small ways that you can cut costs and reduce expenses to help you make and stay within your budget. Well, these are the ways I have reduced my costs personally.