Thursday, December 31, 2009

Thankful for 2009

Wow, 2009 is almost over! Did the year fly by quickly or what? Can anyone believe that all the hype about entering the new millennium was actually TEN years ago? Soon it will be 2010 and another decade will begin. Time flies, they say, and it seems like it is spinning even faster nowadays.

This time last year I was looking forward to the year 2009 with hope and expectations. I had a long list of hopes , dreams and ambitions. I had a list of prayer requests and petitions that I placed before God to help me achieve by the end of the year. Now it's the last day of the year, and I am really grateful to God. Nope, I didn't get everything on my wish-list. But I have gained so many wonderful things in this past year, and I have received so many blessings from God, that I cannot but be grateful.

I'm thankful to God for my blessings. I have been overwhelmed many times when I think about how good God has been to me. I can't list them all but I can mention a few:

I'm thankful for my family: mum, dad, sisters, aunts, uncles, cousins, in-laws, etc. Sure, once in a while somebody gets on my nerves but I know I love them, and I cannot do without them.

I'm thankful for the simple joys of peaceful sleep. I have slept and woken up everyday in the last 365 days.

I'm thankful to God for meeting all my needs. I never had to go hungry or beg for anything in 2009.

I'm thankful for the good times that I enjoyed, and the not-so-good times where God was my strength and hope.

I'm thankful for laughter and fun in my life. There are too many sad and lonely people in the world today.

I'm thankful to God for adding another year to my life. I celebrated a birthday in perfect health, surrounded by good friends and family.

I'm thankful to God for the many wonderful new friends I made this year. Especially my fellow bloggers who have become my friends and sisters. Aloted, Believer, Writefreak, Nolimit, Diamond Hawk, GoodNaijaGirl and more. And to my writing mentors: Abidemi Sanusi and Dr Tade.

I'm thankful for another peaceful, happy and fulfilling year of marriage. I know I am so blessed and privileged to share my life with a man that makes me happy, believes in me, loves me, supports me and wants the best for me.

I'm thankful because I'm older and wiser now, than I was a year ago.

I'm thankful for protection and safety. I went through 2009 without any accidents - amazing.

I'm thankful for the trips around Europe I enjoyed during the year.

I'm thankful for the progress I made with my work this year. And the opportunities I have to explore further in the coming months.

I'm thankful to my co-writers on our blog series: Latifa, Jaycee, Icepick, Flourishing Florida, Diamond Hawk, Ayodele, Writefreak and Rayo. Thanks for believing in my idea and working with me.

I'm thankful because I've moved closer to God this year.

I'm also thankful for the many lessons I've learnt this year:

I've learnt to depend on God more than ever

I've learnt that respecting my husband is the key to a peaceful marriage

I've learnt to be more patient

I've learnt to appreciate the important things in life

I've learnt not to compare myself with anybody

I've learnt that I should choose carefully whose opinions I take on board

I've learnt to receive criticism graciously

I've learnt that a positive attitude wins in the end, even in the face of overwhelming odds.

I've learnt that pride and sacrificial love are not compatible.

I've learnt to be humble and content with what, who and where I am at the moment.

For 2010:

I want to be completely in tune with where God wants me to be, what God wants me to do and at His perfect timing.

I want to be more and more like Jesus everyday.

I want to achieve my potential with my writing.

I want to become a better wife, sister, daughter and friend.

So help me God.

Now I'm counting down to 2010........................!!!

Happy New Year to everyone! May 2010 be the best year ever in all aspects of our lives!

I'm off to church in a few hours. How will you see in the new year?

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

As The Year Draws to a Close

Hey everyone! Hope you had a Merry Christmas and you are rounding up 2009 on a great note. I had a nice time over the Christmas period, with time spent hanging out with family and friends. And of course, lots of things to eat, and the exchanging of gifts. Apart from the small hitch of some of my Christmas shopping being delayed in the post, and hence some people not getting their presents, it was all good.

That is, until I heard the news about the Nigerian terrorist. Until that Boxing Day, I never thought I would hear of a Nigeria attempting a suicide bombing... ever. In fact, for many hours, I was at a gathering of friends and we were all speculating that perhaps the guy was not even a real Nigerian, and was just an imposter posing with a Nigerian passport. Until CNN, Sky News and the BBC released (and keep releasing) further details of who he is and the stories surrounding how he became a terror suspect. I have read countless blogs, articles and commentaries about the story and all the angles, even some wild, crazy speculations. All I can say is, the guy did Nigeria as a nation and all Nigerians no favours at all. It's hard enough trying to shake off the negative images we already have as fraudsters, a corrupt nation, a failed state, etc now we have to deal with the added 'terrorist' tag. I can just imagine how much more difficult it will be for ordinary, decent, honest and hardworking Nigerians to get a visa, or travel around the world. I know how I feel every time I travel around Europe and my passport is given extra attention at immigration desks, and I am subjected to extra scrutiny. This latest incident will only make it worse. Sigh.

So what can I do? As one person, I can only continue to uphold Nigeria's name by showing the rest of the world that one individual's actions cannot and should not define who the rest of us are, as a nation. I will continue to proudly declare that I am a Nigerian, and no, I am not fraudulent, neither do I have any intentions of blowing up airplanes.

Moving on, I am thankful to be alive to see 2009 coming to an end. It really did fly by so quickly! Thankfully, I'm ending the year with many many many reasons to be grateful to God. I've grown older and wiser, learnt many lessons, received tangible and intangible blessings, made new friends, travelled to new places, enjoyed some new experiences and fulfilled some dreams. Yes, it's been a wonderful year.

I'm looking forward to 2010, it looks like it's going to be a very interesting year. Here is wishing everyone a wonderful year 2010! May we spend the year in perfect health, may we move many steps forward in achieving our dreams and may we all be far better people in 2010 than we've ever been. Happy New Year in advance!

Thursday, December 10, 2009


I got my first rejection letter from a publisher yesterday. It is a rite of passage for every aspiring author :) In fact I got a text from my published writer friend to say congrats! Apparently it means I am now a real writer! lol.

As far as rejection letters go, this one's not too bad actually. The publisher said "Unfortunately with the publishing industry in it's current state, I felt your novel would not be commercial enough". I want to remain positive, so I will take that to mean the novel was not completely rubbish, and her rejection is simply down to economics and timing. I've heard of editors giving some really funny reasons for rejecting a novel to the tune of "Do yourself a favour and don't give up the day job"! So FG will pick herself up and carry on. As someone else said, it can only mean I'm one step closer to meeting the right publisher.

The fear of rejection was one of the things I was so worried about when I first decided to start writing, but I think I've had to see it as one of the things that come with the business side of writing, and not take it personally. Even the most successful authors who have won long lists of awards for their writing had to face rejection at some point. Determination and resilience is an essential strength to have in this game, and a thick skin is also very useful!

On to other news:

To say a big thank you to our readers and supporters, we are running a competition and giveaway for the next three weeks on our series blog! Check it out! This is the first one and entries will close on Monday the 14th. There will be two more competitions and prizes until Christmas, so make sure you click over to the blog now and enter. You could be a winner!

Hope you enjoy the rest of the week and have a great weekend ahead.

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