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The blogging sphere has crowded up very quickly in the past decade and it even looks like YouTube is taking over. Starting a blog in 2021 se...

Tuesday, 27 September 2022

How to Save Money on Baby Costs


How to Save Money on Baby Costs

The birth of a baby is a life changing event. It not only affects your physical and mental health, it also tells on your finances. You may need to move into a house with an extra room; you will have more use of water, gas and electricity. Your bills will definitely increase. Also, maternity leave means a drop in your regular income and then down the line there is the cost of child care. These coupled with the fact that most people have babies in their youth when they are also trying to get established in their careers, means that the decision to have a baby can seriously destabilize one financially, if not prepared. Rich or poor, babies are being born anyway. It is therefore necessary to find ways to cut down on the huge expenses that accompany the birth of a newborn - even more important with the UK's current cost of living crisis.

Here are 6 ways to save money on baby costs.

1. Accept used products from friends and family. In the excitation of expecting a new baby, it is easy to overspend. There are lots of blogs and YouTube videos about what to buy and though mostly helpful, some of the things you will buy will be a waste. We were blessed to have generous senior friends who out of their own good will gave us some of their baby stuff still in perfect condition. It really saved us money especially for the bulkier stuff like baby cot, Moses basket, and baby stroller. However, it is advisable to get a brand new car seat as it must comply with safety rules.

2. Try cheaper nappies. Size 2 Pampers pack of 46 from Tesco is £6 compared to Size 2 Mamia pack of 58 from Aldi which is £2. Just see how much can be saved. In my experience, the Mamia nappy was even more absorbent than Pampers. I also tried Tesco's Fred n Flo Size 2 nappy which was about £3 but I found it worse than Aldi's Mamia and Pampers so I dumped it. Before settling for expensive brands, try out cheaper brands.

3. Breastfeed. I understand that certain situations may impact on one's ability to breastfeed, but if able, breastfeeding, apart from its numerous health benefits is another way of cutting costs. SMA Pro first infant formula 800g is £11. Other brands are even costlier. Exclusively formula fed neonates can go through one tin within 3 days. 

4. Buy cheaper bodysuits. Bodysuits or onesies are those vests that are fastened at the nappy area. They are usually worn beneath a sleepsuit or any other clothing. Babies outgrow bodysuits very quickly. They are inadvertently going to poo on some of them. Why invest £50 on an expensive bodysuit when one can get 10 for £9. These expensive bodysuits are going to be covered anyway. They look cool in pictures though. 

5. Throw a baby shower/gender reveal. While you should not count on gifts from friends or make that the reason for throwing a shower, gifts from friends and family go a long way in cutting baby costs. 

6. Apply for child benefits. Check to see if you are eligible for any available child benefits and apply. You could get help with childcare costs or a monthly stipend for the child. It may not be much but, a little is better than nothing.

A newborn baby brings joy but can put a strain on the family finances. I hope with these few points of mine, you are able to save a few dollars, pounds or Naira. Please comment below with additional tips.

Radiant ~ September 2022

Sunday, 4 September 2022

Why Christians Struggle in Life - The 3 Enemies

Why Christians Struggle in Life

photo credit - midtowndowntown.com

Despite the victory that the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ bought believers, many Christians still live defeated lives all through their time on earth. Many Christians are still poor, sick and depressed despite being free from the oppression of Satan and the bondage of sin.

The Christian life is not void of troubles, don't get me wrong. Jesus said "In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world." - John 16:33b NIV

There are trials that we will have to face in order for the life of Christ to be perfected in us. However, there are troubles we bring upon ourselves and these are the types we should make every effort to avoid. "People ruin their lives by their own stupidity, so why does God always get blamed?" - Proverbs 19:3 MSG

Here are three things I have discovered that can hinder a believing Christian from living a successful purposeful life.

If you are struggling in life, you might want to check that one of these three does not exist in your life.

1. Ignorance

My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. Hosea 4:6 KJV

Many Christians pray and hope for God to give them ideas for success, but do not actively seek knowledge. We are in an era of enlightenment. There is knowledge everywhere. They are in books, blogs, podcasts, YouTube videos, etc. Literally, "wisdom calls out on the streets..." Proverbs 1:20 NET

Daniel was full of wisdom. His wisdom was not only supernatural. God gave him understanding of books. As for these four young men, God gave them knowledge and skill in all literature and wisdom" Daniel 1:17a NKJV

Rather than waiting on inspiration to re-invent the wheel, we should be diligent in going after existing truth, wisdom and knowledge both from the Bible and other literature. 


2. Laziness

Some people know what to do but are just too lazy to do it. 

They may either not bother doing it, do it inconsistently, or do it not long enough. 

"His master replied, 'You wicked lazy servant!..." Matthew 25:26 NIV

This servant in the parable of the talents did not bother going to work with his talent. He hid it. So the Master called him lazy.

"The slothful will not roast his game; but the diligent man will get precious wealth." Proverbs 12:27 KJV  

So this man went out and did some work in catching a game, but did not see it through to completion. He did not roast it. How many unfinished projects do we have? I am guilty myself, with so many unpublished blog posts (started but never completed).


3. Cowardice

Some people know what to do, are able to give it their best but do not do so because of fear.

  • Fear of failure. They might have failed in previous projects. Once beaten, twice shy.
  • Fear of their idea being taken from them.  So they fail to develop their ideas.
  • Fear of the initial sacrifices they may have to make to see the idea through. So they remain in their comfort zone.

"I was afraid I would lose your money, so I hid it in the earth. Look here is your money back." Matthew 25:25 NLT

That lazy servant in the parable of the talent said his excuse was fear of losing the money. Has fear of losing money prevented you from making a wise investment?

"But cowards, unbelievers, the corrupt, murderers, the immoral, those who practice witchcraft, idol worshipers, and all liars—their fate is in the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death." Rev 21:8 NLT

It is quite alarming to see that cowards are among those going to hell, named first even before murderers and the immoral. So we should fight off fear with the same zeal we fight off sin.


In conclusion, a non-believer would have these 3 enemies as well as the devil and sin to battle with. But somehow non believers are even more aggressive against these 3. Since they do not rely on God, they go after knowledge with all their might and work hard because they have only themselves to trust.

But believers in the Lord Jesus Christ are at a more advantageous position. The devil has been defeated and sin has no dominion over us. We have been set up for success already. We should not then shoot ourselves in the foot by allowing ignorance, laziness and cowardice rob us of our blessings.


I am still having to deal with number 2. Which one is it for you?

If this blog post has blessed you, please leave a comment below.


Shalom.


Radiant ~ September 2022

Tuesday, 17 May 2022

15 Life Principles To Learn From The Life Of Joseph

photo credit - jw.org

The Bible is not just a religious book. It is a book of life's principles. You do not need to be religious to gain from it. Though you will need to be spiritual to see the meanings beyond the literal words. 

The story of Joseph is a popular one. You might know him as the dreamer, the one who was sold by his brothers into slavery, went to prison unjustly and then rose to Prime Minister in one day. But amidst the sensational story full of twists and turns lies important life's principles still relevant in our day and age. 

Here are 15 lessons from the life of Joseph.


15 Life Principles From the Life of Joseph


1. Preferential treatment of a child by his parents creates animosity among siblings. Gen 37:4. “But his brothers hated Joseph because their father loved him more than the rest of them”.

 

2.     Some people will hate me for my audacity in dreaming big. I don’t have to share my dream with everyone. Gen 37:8 “and they hated him all the more because of his dreams and the way he talked about them”.

 

3. Hatred and jealousy precede murder. In other words, anyone that hates me or is jealous of me can kill me. I must tread cautiously around them. Also, I will not allow these vices to thrive in me. Gen 37:11 “but while his brothers were jealous of Joseph, his father wondered what the dreams meant.” Gen 37:19 “‘here comes the dreamer”, they said. Come on! Let’s kill him and throw him into one of these cisterns!”

 

4.   In every bad situation, we can still be grateful that it could have been worse. The devil always plans the worst. But God saves us. Gen 37:26 “Judah said to his brothers, “What will we gain by killing our brother? We’d have to cover up the crime. Instead of hurting him, let’s sell him to those Ishmaelite traders”.

 

5.  God is with me even when I am in a difficult situation. Gen 39:2 “The Lord was with Joseph, so he succeeded in everything he did as he served in the home of his Egyptian master. The Lord will cause me to succeed even when I am in an unjust situation as long as I remain faithful. Rather than complain about the injustice, like Joseph I should focus on doing my best in that situation.

 

6. When a righteous man is in charge, the establishment is blessed. This is the reason righteous men should aim to take high positions in the nation. Gen 39:5 “From the day Joseph was put in charge of His master’s household and property, the Lord began to bless Potiphar’s household for Joseph’s sake.”

 

7.    Do not negotiate with the devil. Flee from all temptations. Gen 39:12b.”Joseph tore himself away, but he left his cloak in her hand as he ran from the house.”

 

8.  In life, you don’t always get rewarded for doing the right thing. In fact, right doing can land you in trouble. But it is still worth doing right because you know that God is with you. Gen 39:20-21 “So he took Joseph and threw him into the prison where the king’s prisoners were held, and there he remained. But the Lord was with Joseph in the prison and showed him his faithful love.

 

9. Always acknowledge the giver of your gift. Gen 40:8b “‘Interpreting dreams is God’s business’, Joseph replied, ‘Go ahead and tell me your dreams’.

 

10.  In life, those I’ve done good to might forget me. That’s why I should never put my trust in man. I should not get angry when they forget. They will remember in God’s time. Gen 40:23 “Pharaoh’s chief cupbearer, however, forgot all about Joseph, never giving him another thought.”

 

11. Do not share God’s glory with Him. Gen 41:16 “‘It is beyond my power to do this’, Joseph replied, ‘But God can tell you what it means and set you at ease’”.


12. In life, there will be times of prosperity and times of famine. A wise person will not eat all he has in his time of prosperity. Prosperity does not come for you alone. Saving is a godly principle. It will not only save you but others during the time of famine. Gen 41:29-30 “The next seven years will be a period of great prosperity throughout the land of Egypt. But afterwards there will be seven years of famine…”

 

13. The secret to moving from prison to palace is to consistently use your gift for the service of others. One day, the king will ask of you. First Joseph graduated from being a dreamer (serving himself only) to being an interpreter of dreams (serving others). It was what he did in prison that lifted him to the palace. Do you see a man skillful in his work, he will stand before kings. He will not stand before unknown men. Proverbs 22:29

 

14. One can still be generous in a time of famine. Gen 43:11 “So their father, Jacob, finally said to them, ‘if it can’t be avoided, then at least do this. Pack your bags with the best products of this land. Take them down to the man as gifts - balm, honey, gum, aromatic resin, pistachio nuts, and almonds'".

 

15. God uses even evil people and evil intentions to fulfil His purposes. Gen 45:5 “But don’t be upset, and don’t be angry with yourselves for selling me to this place. It was God who sent me here ahead of you to preserve your lives.” Gen 50:20 “You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good. He brought me to this position so I could save the lives of many people.”


I hope you have been blessed by these lessons from the life of Joseph in the Bible. Please comment below on your thoughts.


Radiant - May 2022

Thursday, 5 May 2022

How To Move From Prison to Palace

picture credit - Shutterstock

A prison is a place of restriction, lack of freedom, frustration, and obscurity. It is a place of suffering and punishment.

Conversely, a palace is the home of a king. A place of no limitations. A place of abundance. 

Do you feel like you are currently in prison? Do you long to be in a palace instead?

You may be in a physical prison, a financial prison (no freedom to do what you want to do because of your lack of resources), or an emotional prison (bound by your fears and anxiety) unable to reach your potential.

How did Joseph go from prison to palace? Genesis 41.

He interpreted Pharaoh's dream.

He had been doing the same in the prison. He simply did what he was doing in prison. Only difference is this time he was doing it before a king.

For him to be recommended to a king, shows he was good at what he did.

Do you see someone skilled in their work? They will serve before kings; they will not serve before officials of low rank. Proverbs 22:29

How to go from prison to Palace.

Master your skill while in prison. Do it over and over again, even for free, just be good. Word will soon go out to the King who will be needing your service one day. When that day comes, you will be ready.

They say success happens when opportunity meets preparation.

Prison is your best place for skill refinement because there are not many distractions. Distractions in this life include social life - parties, friends, activities, etc.

In prison, there is a regimented routine.

"Lock yourself in the prison of your goals" - Sunday Adelaja 

Surround yourself by routines that will help you achieve your purpose.

Maximise your time of obscurity.

Soon the king will send for you. Will you be ready?

Radiant ~ May 2022

Friday, 22 October 2021

ISAD 2021: International Stammering Awareness Day

It is the International Stammering Awareness Day. Last year, I wrote about my experience of stammering at work here. So much has happened in the past 365 days that my current workplace experience is almost the opposite of what I wrote last year. I speak quite fluently these days. I make lots of phone calls with no problems. I do not stumble on the NHS number anymore. 


I now work in a GP surgery rather than a hospital ward. So my consultations are in the confines of a room with just the patient and me, and sometimes a relative. Maybe this is contributory but I don’t think it would be different if I remained in the hospital. I had already started speaking fluently in the last 4 months of my last hospital post which I left in August this year. And I had stammered a lot when I was in a similar GP setting in my first year of training. 

My testimony is not much about my freedom to speak fluently, but more about overcoming my fear and anxiety around speaking and meeting people. Fluency came as a bonus. I found out that as soon as I began to let myself stammer without feeling shame or fear, I stammered less. Those who never met me stammering will find it hard now to believe that it used to be a problem.

I am very grateful to the people who introduced the concept of “It is okay to stammer” to me. Iain Wilkie, for your work with the practice interviews. I participated last year. All the authors of the book "Stammering Pride and Prejudice: Difference not Defect". 

I am grateful to Dr. Sunday Adelaja for his YouTube series on Self Confidence and all the other teachings. I am also grateful to all who encouraged me when speaking was so difficult including my family, my husband, my church and close friends. Guys, I am accepting speaking invitations now.

On this International Stammering Awareness Day, I would like to encourage everyone to provide a supportive environment for stammerers. Most of our problem is the fear, shame and anxiety from encountering a hostile atmosphere - one that does not tolerate or accept the stammering speech. When stammerers are free to be themselves, to say what they want to without embarrassing looks, to finish their sentences without someone cutting them short, to be heard and appreciated for the content of their speech and not the delivery, they thrive and can attain to their full potential. Be a stammering ally today!

My message to stammerers is “It is okay to stammer”. Feel free to stammer. Permit yourself to stammer. Do not let it stop you. You may need to work harder than everyone else at developing your self confidence. If you don’t stand up for yourself, who will?

Happy International Stammering Awareness Day!


Radiant ~ October 2021

Monday, 11 October 2021

World King's Day


11th October is World King's Day. On this day, few years ago, a king was born. Let me introduce you to this king.


When I met my husband, I knew he was different from all the men I had known before him. I was not sure what the journey of marriage would be like with him but I knew two things which gave me peace and faith for a blissful partnership. He loved God and he was wise. I reckoned that if he loved God he could love me and if he made wise decisions, I could submit to him.


We have been in this for almost 3 years and I have come to know so many other sides to him that challenge, amaze and inspire me.


1. Perseverance - Relocating to the UK came with the hardship of periods of unemployment. I watched as he went through tons of job applications, company research, professional networking, interviews, rejections, feedback, courses, self development, volunteer work, freelancing, job loss, etc. I would have given up very early, were I in his shoes, but he never did. He always believed he could break into the system and he did.


2. Love - My husband does his best daily to express love for me in my primary love language. I can't say I do the same for him. In fact, I only discovered his primary love language 2 days ago and I was shocked. I had thought it was something else.


3. Loyalty - I have never seen a more loyal person in my life. The respect this man has for authority is second to none even when he completely disagrees with the said authority. He is very dependable. Anyone who has him in his team has got a gem. 


4. Hardworking - It did not cease to amaze me that even when he was jobless, he slept less hours than I did. He works so hard at everything, be it his career, volunteer work, or self development.


5. Excellence - Any project he takes on, he takes ownership of it and he does his best to do it excellently. This comes with a catch though, or maybe a blessing in disguise. Because people know he will always do things right, he gets drafted into lots of projects.


6. A healthy self esteem - My husband is very self- aware and comfortable with who he is, not too much to become proud, yet very secure in his identity whether he has little or much. He celebrates the success of his peers and never feels a pressure to measure up. Rather, he competes with himself.


7. Tolerance - Like God, my husband is slow to anger. Which makes me so anxious in the rare occurrence of me sensing that he is angry. He understands our differences and he appreciates my uniqueness even when my behaviour annoys him.


8. Responsible - I admire how he takes care of his parents and siblings. The burden of his family is his burden.


9. Leadership - Some people are born leaders. He is one of them. Once he is in a group, people naturally gravitate towards him. Whether it is because he takes responsibility for the task at hand or because he has foresight and wisdom, I don't know.


10. Supportive - My husband has always cheered me on. When I was doubtful about my stammer, he would always tell me not to give much thought to it, that I could excel at whatever I wanted to, in spite of the stammer. It was like he never noticed the stammer. With him, I was always free to stammer. 


This is my husband. This is the man I married. I am so proud of you, my King. I celebrate you today and always. May God bless the mother who bore you. May you know no lack in your life. May you excel in all your endeavours. I love you so much. Daniel loves you too. Happy birthday.


Radiant ~ October 2021

Thursday, 30 September 2021

Time and Life



Sunrise, sunset
Tick tock, tick tock
Day dies, lights out
Time waits for no man


Days go, days come
Weeks run, weeks fly
Month's up, months gone
Life passes one by


~
Chidiogo Nwosu (Radiant) 
September 2021

Sunday, 12 September 2021

Overcoming Fear and Anxiety - A Stammerer's Testimony

During my maternity leave which coincided with the start of lock down last year, I had time to reflect and take actions on my life. One aspect I thought I needed to work on was my speech. 

I prayed about it. My mom would lay hands on me and speak to my tongue daily while she was with us. Up until she left after six months, there was no visible result. I still stammered as bad. During that time, I began listening to Dr. Sunday Adelaja. I discovered that life is governed by rules and success in life is predictable. It can be achieved by anyone willing to study the rules and obey it. So I decided to quit the blame game and take charge of my life.  I wanted to learn about this thing that caused me so much fear, this thing that had held me down, shied me away from reaching my full potentials. (To read about the impact stammering had on my life, click here.)

But the first step to having a problem solved is acknowledging that there is one and finding information already available on the subject. I had to first acknowledge that I stammered and then seek out information on the topic. My journey with stammering had involved lots of denial in the guise of positive confession. I think Christians are particularly at risk of this. In bid to be seen to have faith, sometimes we deny the existence of problems hence do not seek solutions, rather we pray and hope they go away.

I read research papers, listened to TED talks, joined online support groups, attended online conferences where I met fellow stammerers, and read books and blog posts on the subject. I was consumed by it. I needed to know all there was to know. I started learning several concepts including the social model of disability, stammering iceberg, stammering pride. I discovered that "it is okay to stammer" and that I had the responsibility of educating the public to accept this way of speech. Rather than trying to fix me to adapt to the majority, they needed to adapt to this equally valid way of speech. The problem with using advanced speech techniques to formulate a fluent speech pattern was that it only dealt with the tip of the iceberg. Underneath the faked fluency still lay fear, anxiety, feeling of helplessness, lack of control, dissatisfaction for not being able to fully express ourselves the way we want to. The freedom to stammer deals with the bulk of the iceberg.

When I permitted myself to stammer, instead of trying to hide it, I discovered that the fear and anxiety left and so most of the stammer actually left because fear and anxiety had exaggerated it. I no longer feel helpless, hopeless or angry about not being in control of my life and how I want it lived. I have since resumed work after the maternity leave and my work life has completely changed from what it was before I went on leave. I speak fluently, without fear of my speech tripping up on me, I say what I want to say (not having to substitute problem words), I take up teaching opportunties, I meet new people, and I am no longer in dread of the job. I am rather fulfilled. Now I am living free. Free to be myself, free to live out my full potential.

This is my testimony.

I guess the lesson for others is that while we pray, we should also take corresponding action for faith without works is dead (James 2:17). If you are waiting on God for something, pray about it, and also educate yourself regarding the matter. Learn the laws and principles that govern that aspect of life and obey them. The answer to your prayer may just lie in a book, a video or in discussing with someone whose gone through the same. My people perish for lack of knowledge. (Hosea 4:6)


May your deliverance come speedily.


Radiant ~ September 2021


PS: I came across speech therapy. In 2019, I paid a private speech therapist and drove 1hr to keep my 1hr appointments. She taught me several techniques to avoid stammering or minimise the stammer, including breathing exercises and speech techniques. I did not get better with these. I stopped after 5 sessions.

Last year, I engaged with the adult dysfluency service via the National Health Service and by then I had already started accepting the stammer and was now familiar with the stammering iceberg. So I told them I did not want to focus on speech techniques but rather on the negative emotions that accompanied the stammer. So it was more of a talking therapy. I had 3 virtual sessions. It was helpful as it got me looking inwards and reflecting but I had already done most of the work with all my research. 



Wednesday, 1 September 2021

Is Street Evangelism Outdated?

Hey you. Long time no see. I have been off the radar, doing lots of work on personal growth. Today, I will like to talk about street evangelism and hear your take on it.

I visited London last weekend. On two separate days, while walking on the streets of the shopping malls, I was confronted by black Africans doing evangelism. First, I saw a white guy preaching with his microphone in front of the mall while black Africans were scattered across the street serving tracts. The next day I heard a man preaching with African accent through a microphone and was offered tracts by people who looked like Nigerians.

On the first day, I had passed 2 people who attempted to give me a tract. But in order to encourage them, I received from the third person. When I got home, I barely glanced at the tract before it was tossed in the bin. 

The second day I didn't bother taking the tract. But I still wanted to encourage them so I told them why I wasn't taking it. "I'm a Christian", I said, "I'm born again". I added that bit 'cause in Nigeria when we did street evangelism, we found out that almost everyone was a Christian. So we would rather ask "Are you born again? " Whether that approach to street evangelism was right is another topic to debate.

But it all got me thinking. How effective is this kind of street evangelism in the UK?

When I was in Nigeria, I participated in evangelism a few times. I would accompany my mom to hospital visits where she would preach to patients. I joined school fellowship groups to preach in prison, villages and on the streets. And I have preached to friends one-on-one. Street evangelism was very popular. In fact, when I was little, I woke up daily to the sound of street evangelists shouting through their megaphone at 5am in our local language beckoning us to repent.

I have personally participated in street evangelism in the UK. First, while studying for my Masters degree. We shared tracts on the streets while some of us sang to draw attention. Not many people took our tracts. Who knows whether the very few that did only did so because they were already Christians and wanted to encourage us? Who knows if the tracts ended up in the bins as soon as they were collected? 

Just before COVID-19 hit, I participated in street evangelism again a few times with my local church and an independent evangelism group in my community. Our method was to sing songs while some of us went to engage with people on the park. I think many liked the music, some stopped to watch. Some were open to be prayed for. I think very little said the sinners prayer. But when it came to getting contacts so as to follow up, they were very hesitant.

So lately I have been thinking:

Is street evangelism outdated?

The model of evangelism of shouting via megaphones in the marketplace, people going about the street handing out tracts and confronting passersby to ask "Are you born again?" may work in African villages but I think it may not be the most effective use of time here. I have observed very little results going by this model that it behooves one to ask "Isn't there a better way?".

And now I will show you the most excellent way. 1 Corinthians 12:31

Theodore Roosevelt said "People don't care how much you know until they know how much you care ".

Until people can see the impact we have made in their lives, they may not willfully submit themselves to listen to us, less so (and a painful truth) listen to blacks. 

How does Pastor Sunday Adelaja, a black Nigerian man, lead one of the largest churches in Europe with white folks making up over 90% of his congregation? His church engages in so many social projects that the community cannot deny her impact. People come seeking for solutions to their social problems which the church addresses. Along the line they are interested in hearing the message of the church. 

Even Jesus went about doing good. Acts 10:38. He was solving their problems by healing their sick, casting out demons and multitudes came to hear him.

I believe that Christians can be more effective soul winners by serving people, meeting needs, solving problems. Then they will be the ones asking like they did to Jesus, "How can I be saved? "

Hence Christians should not take their jobs lightly. That is an avenue for service. Christians should look around their environment to discover problem areas and proffer solutions to them. Love is the most excellent way, even to soul winning. 

Is street evangelism outdated? 

How do you respond when you meet street evangelists? Is there a better way to do street evangelism beyond preaching or singing through a microphone and serving tracts?

Kindly share your thoughts below.


Radiant ~ September 2021

 


Thursday, 21 January 2021

How to make Coconut Rice



Coconut rice is one of my favourite rice dishes. There are different ways to cook it. 

Here is the way I make my mouth-watering coconut rice.

How to cook Coconut rice

3 cups of rice
10 Chicken drumsticks 
2 Onion bulbs
1 tomato
3 bell peppers (green, yellow, red)
3 garlic cloves
Ginger powder 
2 scotch bonnets 
1 table spoon curry powder 
1 table spoon thyme
3 seasoning cubes
Salt to taste
400g coconut cream
3 tablespoons ground crayfish (optional)
Desiccated coconut (to sprinkle)
1 cup of Vegetable/coconut oil


Cook chicken with blended onion and garlic, ginger powder, curry powder, thyme, one seasoning cube and salt. Separate the cooked chicken from the stock. You could fry or grill the chicken.

Parboil rice. Do not parboil if using Basmatti rice. Wash and set aside. Fry diced onions in oil with thyme and salt. Add diced bell peppers and tomato. Fry. Pour chicken stock, coconut cream and blended scotch bonnet.  



Bring to boil. Add seasoning cubes and salt to taste. Pour parboiled rice. Add water if needed to just above the rice. Once boiling, reduce heat to lowest, cover pot with foil and cook till done. 


Sprinkle crayfish or cooked shrimps and desiccated coconut. Stir and the food is ready.



Have you made coconut rice lately? What's your recipe?

Leave a comment below.

Radiant ~ January 2021

Sunday, 10 January 2021

About Radiant's blog

The blogging sphere has crowded up very quickly in the past decade and it even looks like YouTube is taking over. Starting a blog in 2021 seems almost pointless. Yet some say if you find a tight niche, you could thrive. Where then does that leave memoir bloggers like me who write about practically anything going on in their lives? So that I am not perceived as jack-of-all-trade-and-master-of-none, here is what this blog is about.

Radiant’s blog is about ME - Chidiogo Nwosu a.k.a Radiant. I am my own mastery. I have been blogging here since November 2013. I started it as an outlet for my creativity, an online diary. Surprisingly, I got quite some faithful followers. My mission is to be a social influencer, to inspire people through my life's experiences.  Hopefully this post will help you navigate easily through many of my wonderful write-ups. 

About Radiant's Blog

I was born in a rich yet poor diverse country called Nigeria - popularly known as the giant of Africa. 

Much of my primary school memory is hazy. However, I remember fondly that I frequently represented my school in competitions. I've penned some of my secondary school experiences in my FEDACAD tales.

Like many young girls, I've had my own share of guys approaching me for a date. In Nigeria we call it "chyking". My Chyking series details this.

I studied to become a medical doctor at the University of Nigeria and became one in 2012. During my internship year, I decided to explore my passion for music. I wrote and performed songs.

After undergraduate studies in Nigeria, graduates attend a compulsory one year of national service called National Youth Service Corps, NYSC. I did mine in Lagos, the capital city of Nigeria and lived there till I left Nigeria so you will find posts about life in Lagos, Nigeria.

In 2015, I was among the pioneer cohort of the Young Africa Leaders Initiative (YALI) Regional Leadership Center in Accra, Ghana. I wrote a series on my experience at the YALI RLC.

While I practiced Medicine in Nigeria, I was constantly dissatisfied with the profession and wrote about the reasons for this here

Seeking a way out of clinical practice, I decided to pursue Public Health and came to United Kingdom for a Masters degree. Any wonder that I have posts on my life in Nottingham under the label Nottingham Tales and a post on why you should choose UK for your Masters study?

I was privileged to obtain a scholarship for my Masters programme. Hence my post on how to write a winning scholarship essay

I moved to London after my Masters programme for an internship and to prepare for the medical licensing exam. So I definitely logged my London tales.

After gaining the General Medical Council licence, I got a job in Manchester. It was so busy I got no time to write about it. I've since moved on to a General Practice training post in a small town called King's Lynn in Norfolk, East of England. I plan to write a post on getting into GP training.

I have had a stammer since I can remember. So of course I have posts about living with a stammer.

I am married. So I've thrown in a couple of posts relating to marriage.

But before then, I have a whole RadiantKing series about my courtship with my darling husband from meeting him in Lagos, Nigeria, him not showing interest, our long distance relationship, to the engagement and wedding. We now have a son. Hence my motherhood posts.

I had my mom over just before I had my baby and I wanted to help others find answers to the questions I had when I went through obtaining a visa for her. My posts on getting a UK visitor visa for your parent is apt if you are in such situation.

I am Christian. I go to church regularly and listen to sermons very often, so I have some posts on lessons from sermons.

I love to cook and bake so I have food recipes here.

I have written poemsI'm not into fiction but I have tried to do some.

I love to read and watch movies. So I have a few book reviews and movie reviews too.

I have posted lyrics of some of my favourite songs. I did this when I saw there was no post on the internet containing these lyrics. 

So you see that even though the posts on this blog are diverse, they all tell the same story - the story of Radiant's journey on planet earth. Please let me know what you think about this blog in the comment section and what you would like to read about.

Happy touring!


Radiant ~ January 2021

Friday, 1 January 2021

New Year Resolutions: 10 Goals for 2021

 

The start of a new year for many is an opportunity to set new goals or resolutions. Though wise and useful, some have lost hope in this activity as they tend to give up on their new year goals by the first quarter of the year. Sometimes, this is because they do not set monthly, weekly or daily targets to achieve their goals. So these resolutions never materialise. Research shows that those that set goals achieve more than those who do not. So here are 10 examples of goals to set for the new year.

10 goals to aspire to in the year 2021

1. Make or keep more money
It is said that money answers all things. Little wonder it makes the top of the list for most people. What if you also made contentment your goal for 2021? A man's life is more than the abundance of his possessions. Another goal could be to reduce expenses. What's the use of making more money if you are going to put them in leaking purses? You could target to keep an account of your daily expenses, review this account every month to see where your money is going, stop any unnecessary expenses and budget for each month. In addition, find ways to increase your income e.g. apply for tax rebates where applicable or work extra hours if you can. 

2. Explore more talents / potentials
Compete with yourself and not others. Always strive to be a better version of you. Research has shown that the best of humans use only up to 10% of their potential while the majority actually live out far less than this. The older you get, the harder it is to explore new things because of worries, cares and responsibilities. Hence, now is the time to discover and explore new sides to you, find new hobbies, and learn new skills. To achieve this, you could target to spend less time on TV, social media or idle talk and channel that time to activities that build you up. You can decide to try one new area of interest every quarter. Use every spare time to study about it and practice, and then decide at the end whether to carry on or not. If it doesn't work out, well then you know your area of weakness. It is better to have tried something new and failed at it than live life wishing you did.

3. Build new relationships / enrich current ones / kill toxic relationships
As a child I heard this saying a lot - show me your friends and I will tell you who you are. Now an adult, I also hear that you are the average of the top 5 people you spend the most time with. The relationships you keep influence your behaviours and actions. So if you want a better life in 2021, you should terminate friendships that do you no good and cultivate inspiring ones. Keep in touch with good friends weekly or monthly depending on the practicality. Remember their birthdays.

4. Expand your network / Expand your worldview.
The pandemic may limit physical gatherings but with online video platforms you can now connect with people from across countries and continents. Find people of like passion, mission, profession or vocation and connect with them by attending (virtual) conferences, joining online support groups, following  blogs/vlogs, listening to podcasts, etc. See how people in other parts of the world tackle issues in your area of interest. 

5. Find purpose and live purposefully
People often get to a point in life where they ask, "what is all my toiling for?" Solomon got there. He worked, studied and jollied hard but at the end of it all, he noted that "there is nothing better than for a man to eat and drink and be happy in his work." The Japanese call this Ikigai which literally translates to "life's worth". This is the meeting point between what you enjoy, what you are good at, what the world needs, and what you can be rewarded for. The happiest people are those whose daily lives reflect these four.

6. Be more generous, more loving and helpful
When people die, they are not remembered for the number of cars, houses, or degrees they acquired, but the number of lives they touched. Similarly what counts in eternity (life after death) is the service you gave for others while on earth. Hence, this should be a daily goal. Look for opportunities to show love, be selfless, give, honour, build and help others.

7. Spend quality time with family 
Plan to spend time with your parents, siblingsspouse, children and other loved ones. Inculcate in your kids the values you want them to have. This assignment cannot be left to the society as the outcome can be regrettable. There are many platforms nowadays that make it possible to connect with loved ones who live far away. Personally, I have found that scheduling weekly calls with my family abroad works.

8. Add value to yourself, grow your mental capacity
You are today, the knowledge and experiences you gained yesterday. In order to be a better human being tomorrow, you must continue to add value to yourself today by reading books, listening to role models and exposing yourself to opportunities beyond your comfort zone. Don't rest on your laurels. If you are not growing, you're diminishing. You cannot be stagnant. A practical target can be to read one book every month. E-books now make it easy to carry books wherever you go. In stead of wiling away time on the bus or train, read a book.

9. Prepare for the future
What better time to prepare for uncertainties than with the current pandemic. If you are in a country that lacks  universal healthcare, you could get private health insurance. Nobody prays for a loss of livelihood, but many saw that in 2020. You can plan to keep an emergency fund (i.e. savings of up to 6 months of your expenses) or buy Bill Protector insurance. Also, you can prepare for the future by building your wealth through investments.

10. Rest, review and replenish 
Your body would wear out on you if you work without rest. Plan vacations or staycations, but make sure you rest. Rest helps you to re-energise or refuel. It affords you a pause in daily business to review progress, correct errors and re-align with goals in case you've drifted. It helps you to recuperate and keeps you healthy. Remember, only the living can work.

Other goals depending on unique circumstances could be to buy a house, buy a car, pass an exam, pay off debt, relocate, get a degree, get married, birth children or adopt, attain spiritual growth, etc. To fail to plan is to plan to fail. Be intentional with your expectations for 2021. 

Happy new year.

Please leave a comment below.

Radiant ~ January 2021



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