Monday, 26 January 2015

My Wedding Story Part 1: The Traditional Events

I'm African yeah. I need to tell you my wedding story from the beginning because an African wedding doesn't typically start with the "white wedding" as we call it here in SA. It starts with the engagement and the traditional proceedings. In some countries they call it a dowry, in SA it's lobola. In Tanzania, we call it mahari. It's in plain terms a "bride price", paid in the form of money, or gifts or livestock (depending on where you're from) by the groom and his family to the bride and/or the bride's family. It's then followed by the relevant religious ceremony - Christian or Muslim. My family is Muslim so we had the very intimate ceremony in my parent's home in Dar es Salaam. Here are some pics from the festivities:

My Hair

It was the only event of my wedding story in which I was required to cover my hair. So there isn't much of a story here with the hair decision - more of the hair cover up. I tied my own hair into a mid pony tail and wrapped it first with my pink headscarf. I then had the gold veil pinned onto the scarf on the sides. I knew that I'd were white for my other event so I wanted to wear something bright and colourful - my favourite colour pink :)

Many Tanzanian brides would also have a kitchen party where the women in her life would send her off with gifts for her new marital home. I was due to have one however out of respect for my grandmother's passing a few weeks before, my kitchen party was cancelled. I did have a send off in the form of a more modern bridal shower in SA... coming to you in My Wedding Story Part 2.

Special shout out to one of my best friends Nanzia Mbaga. You'll see her in every one my wedding stories. There were quite a few events in two different countries and she was there for every single one of them. Mad love x


Wednesday, 21 January 2015

Happy New Year!


Can I still say that? Well, I just did lol.

So 2015 is upon us and with a new year comes resolutions. I actually stopped believing in resolutions a few years ago. I think that if you want to change anything or be better in anything you should do it any time in the year. So um, I kinda have about 10 things I'd like to do or do better this year. But I figured if there's any one thing I want to do with my hair this year it's this: Have fun with it. I think I'm off to a good start...

Last year, my focus was very obviously my wedding hair and I spent the entire year in a mix of different protective styles to grow it out so I could have more options when it came time to style it for the big day. NB: wedding pics coming very soon!

A recap:

After I got engaged in 2013, I decided that I needed to be a bit more disciplined in my protective hair styling for two reasons;

1. To help maintain length to (widen my options) especially after having a second chop in late 2013. Mission accomplished! My hair is now past my shoulders when fully straightened :D
2.  To relieve myself of precious time so I wouldn't need to worry about styling my hair everyday. My protective styling routine was a huge time saver and allowed me to dedicate my time on planning the wedding.

I did a total of four protective styles last year, all lasting 6 - 9 weeks with about a 2 - 3 week break in between the styles. I didn't notice much breakage from installing or uninstalling the styles. My favourite one? Definitely the braids. I'm so glad I did them, they were so practical and fun. I've had my hair out from December 10th so it's been over a month. I've been off the radar but have been keeping in touch with my Instagram followers. And #todaysfro is very much my favourite series of all my platforms. So I felt it fair to share what Fro and I have been up to.

Follow me and Fro on Instagram @aishaandlife
Again, wedding pics coming very soon. Watch this space ;)


Tuesday, 16 December 2014

Before I Become a Mrs...

Thank you.

To all of those who contacted me privately, on my blog and my other pages, thank you for sending me your well wishes and keeping me and my family in your prayers. I truly appreciate the love and support I've received from you and although we have never met in person, you have touched me in a way many haven't. I am deeply touched and I'm so glad I shared my previous post about my gran's passing. It and the responses to it have given me strength and reminded me that I need to live as my and my gran's name says I should. I am now home in Tanzania, with my family preparing for my big day. It's comforting to be around fellow mourners and I trust that we will be ok.


So, earlier in the year, after setting my wedding date, I began sharing some bridal styles ideas with you. And although I've already decided on my style for the day (yup yup) I still owe you a couple more to finish the #NB2B Style Inspirations. So before I become a mrs. (hehe), here are my final picks for #NB2B Style Inspirations:

No. 27:

No. 28:

No. 29:

No. 30:

For the #NB2B Series, thank you to all who have sent me your recommendations and tagging my pages. You were all a part of helping me and fellow natural bride to be's figure out a very important part of the bridal look.

This is very likely to be one of if not my last post of the year. Next time I 'see' you, I will tell you alllll about my bridal story. Promise.

Mucho love.


Monday, 8 December 2014

My Sadness

Last week, my beloved grandmother passed away unexpectedly. I thought the world would stop.

I had to start putting the brakes on in many parts of my life in November as wedding plans and end of year work were consuming me. Then, just as I felt that I was re-gaining control I was told the news that she was no longer with us early Saturday morning. I've experienced death in my family and parents of friends, but no one really close to me - whom I had a very consistent relationship with and memories of. I am devastated and still trying to figure out how to come to peace with such an inevitable event.

I was on a flight home to Tanzania merely 6 hours after I heard the news - after panicking and running around to get a last minute ticket out of Joburg. As short notice as it all was, and the number of days I'd lose at work and wedding plans, I had to be there for her funeral which took place on Sunday. I was back at work and wedding planning on Wednesday.

I thought the world would've stopped.

And it dawned on me; this sadness that I'm carrying around, no one else is currently feeling. People are still laughing, joking, carrying on with life. The world seems to have forgotten about the news and wonder why I'm still sad. "You're getting married! You should be excited!" "Why so sad?" "You should be happy, she would've wanted you to be excited". And I'm tired of people telling me how I should feel. I wear my heart on my sleeve, I always have. I want - and need - to feel it. Process it and get to a place where I'm not spontaneously crying during the day.

With my wedding literally around the corner, I'm a bag of emotional mess. I don't feel like I've had a chance to sit still and breathe. There has been no time. So here I am, taking a moment to share this with you in the hopes that it will alleviate some of the heaviness that's in my heart. And the few times it feels less heavy is when I remember that the last time I saw her a couple of months ago, she had met my future husband and gladly gave him her stamp of approval. She was so excited for me, and I'm grateful that I was given that chance. I'm looking to God to help me and my family through this so we are not carrying as much sadness on what's supposed to be my happiest day.

I was named after my grandmother. 'Aisha' means life; she who lived. And lived she did.

RIP Bibi x

Thursday, 30 October 2014

2014 Protective Style 4: Braids...finally!

I finally have braids!!!

After over two years of avoiding them, I finally gave in and sat my bum down to get these babies installed. And boy am I loving them.

It's crunch time for me at the moment, a few more weeks left until my wedding story officially starts. I'm all over the place. And I knew this was going to happen. So instead of putting Fro through some unnecessary hair pulling and neglect, I decided to preserve the growth I'd been working for this year and put her away until the wedding. My regular readers would know that whenever I decide it's time for my next style, braids are always an "option". That had to be in quotes because I'd contemplate them, then decide... nah, I'm not willing to go through the inevitable 5 - 10 hours getting them done. I did it as a teen religiously every three months and refuse to put myself through that in adulthood. Yet every time I'd see another woman rocking braids, a lil place in my heart would squeal "but...I want to rock those too". Well, it only took my stylist 4.5 hours to do this:

I purposefully asked her to do biggish ones so to avoid breakage especially on my hairline which I need intact for December! My current go to style is the messy bun/top knot. To reduce the heaviness, I make sure to place the bun right on top of my head so that it balances and doesn't pull back. My initial regret was that I should've made them longer but after having them in for two weeks, I've figured out a quick way to still get the ooompf I was looking for with longer ones. I know I'm a small person but I just love big hair!

Simple, carefree and so easy to work with. I don't know how I've managed to stay away from them for so long.


Monday, 27 October 2014

30 #NB2B Style Inspirations: No. 26

Follow and interact with my natural bride to be journey using the tag #NB2B. Tag me and #NB2B with your inspirational photos or your own bridal styles.


Monday, 20 October 2014

30 #NB2B Style Inspirations: No. 25

Follow and interact with my natural bride to be journey using the tag #NB2B. Tag me and #NB2B with your inspirational photos or your own bridal styles.

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