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Sunday, 16 September 2018

Resilient like the Palm Tree

The more confident I’ve become, the more I’ve realised how resilience and confidence go hand in hand. You often need to be resilient to remain confident, especially in situations that are new or proving challenging. 



I came across a lot of palm trees on my travels this summer and just sitting on the beach watching the branches of this majestic symbol of victory, swaying in the gentle breeze got me thinking, how many of the things I faced this year alone has made me more resilient; things that just a couple of months prior, would have knocked me flat out. 
I’m now better able to adapt and stand strong despite of opposition and for me, this is a sure sign of growth and a change in how I perceive myself (my inner image).

This resilience, is something I think very well depicts ‘The Palm Tree’:
which not only flourishes in conditions that are often less than ideal, but also has the ability to provide for so many others (be a blessing) regardless of the external conditions surrounding it.

So for example, zeroing in on its ability to withstand the storm, unlike other trees that would have snapped or been uprooted, palm trees have the ability to bend/ sway through strong winds and then easily flex back to their original position when it subsides. 

Additionally, to highlight the tree’s attribute of  ‘being a blessing’, its fruit are a source of daily food and drink for humans and animals alike. The tree itself supplies natural resources, which are used for a number of things in everyday life from paper to carpets and it also protects and shelters from the sun, sea and storm. 

I suppose it’s the distinct DNA of the palm and the fact that it has been designed differently from other trees, that gives it its strong characteristics. 
This is also reflective of us as humans, in that we’ve been created uniquely and different from every other species or being on this planet, with the innate capability to withstand the storms of life.

Consequently, as long as we’re rooted in the soil of Love (where there’s an abundance of everything we need to flourish) and watered by God’s word, then it’ll be easier for us to flourish in tough conditions and blossom where we’re planted.

If we’re sapping life from the right soil, the circumstances around us may suddenly change, but like the palm tree, we can remain confident that we’ll flex right back up and continue to grow strong and thrive from within.

So next time things are proving too difficult or the storm seem to be hitting hard, then let the palm tree inspire you to be resilient, knowing that when the challenge passes, you’ll still be standing in all of the splendour endowed on you from above and you can continue to be a blessing of true beauty, strength and provision to the world.

“The righteous shall flourish like the palm tree … - Ps 92:12

PLEASE CLICK THE LINK BELOW TO WATCH THE ACCOMPANYING VIDEO

Thursday, 26 July 2018

"Thin Privilege" & Body Shaming

Although I get the message behind the concept of "Thin Privilege", I do not believe it's the most appropriate words that can be used to get that message across. I feel using those words, could potentially add fuel to the people who demonise 'thin people' for their bodies and make them feel SHAME for the way they were made. 

Unlike other thin people's experiences, whilst growing up I never saw any real advantage to me being 'thin'. In fact, what I experienced was the complete opposite to what people thought my reality was, because of what society deems as 'normal'. 
Contrary to what many people think, the reality of being thin in the context of it's dictionary definition, is NOT seen as a 'normal' body type in our society.
**Dictionary Definition of thin = someone with very little body fat/ flesh, a lean person, rangy, gawky...**

That's why I don't think we can categorise what some "thin" people personally experience with what every other 'thin' person is facing, because for people like me, body shaming and so many more disadvantages are part and parcel of life. 

I am not playing victim, I'm just expressing my views and think it is necessary for people to look at this trending topic of 'Thin Privilege' from another perspective. 
Let's not push a particular set of people people down, in our bid to uplift another group in society, because all in all, it will end up defeating the purpose. 



Sunday, 15 April 2018

Faith X Threads Review

A new Christian Apparel Brand/ Online Store is on the scene and I thought I would let you guys know about them, because I was impressed with their products and service (something that is not always common with upcoming brands). Additionally, what they stand for and the message behind all of their clothing is also something to celebrate.


Their items have a strong scriptural/ biblical backing quote that is relevant to today’s culture with the added bonus of being fashionable and trendy. I particularly like the uniqueness of the typography they use.
Wrist band inc. in order
Tag on clothing

They currently have 3 different collections on their site with a wide variety of sizes, some new arrivals and some accessories. I’m sure that over the course of time this will expand.


With a vast choice of clothing from tops, to jumpers and Tee’s, there is something for everyone – male, female, boy, girl and baby.
The website is easy to navigate and ordering your item(s) is a very straightforward process with a wide range of payment options also available. 

I think it is necessary to support up and coming brands that are especially putting out a positive message and in this case the gospel “Good News”.
We are constantly bombarded with negativity everywhere we turn or look, so why not allow your clothing to speak on your behalf; be a light in the darkness, spark hope to someone or just be a good conversation starter.


Overall, I was impressed with the quality of the top that I ordered - the fabric/ the print and I briefly spoke about it in my Current Favourites video, which you can watch by clicking the link at the bottom of this page.
So what y’all waiting for, go check out their site: [CLICK HERE for website] and spread the good news.



P.S: I managed to get a discount code you can use should you want to purchase any of their items: ‘TCWFXT’.

PLEASE CLICK THIS LINK FOR THE CURRENT FAVOURITES VIDEO:

Wednesday, 11 April 2018

Conversation with June Sarpong

I wanted to motivate into action the youth and so I reached out to Ms. Sarpong because she has been inspiring me from my early teens.


In our conversation, I thought some of the issues she touched on were relevant for the new ‘Topical Issues’ series (The Scoop) that I started and so with some of the clips from the interview, I created this episode.

Please click the link below, to watch it and I hope you manage to pick up one or two things that will help you continue to live confidently in today’s society.

Tuesday, 27 March 2018

It Is Well

I never really understood why people, particularly in the Christian circle always used the statement “it is well” when things were evidently ‘not well’ or had not quite gone to plan. However, I now know that constantly telling myself that everything is going to be alright and through it all – it is well, is one of the strongest mindsets that can help pull you through some of life’s tough challenges.

Nearing the end of February my Mum-in-love (to me: Mum) passed to glory.
I don’t think anything quite prepares you for the lesson of having to let go and trust God when nothing seems to make sense.

I can vividly remember the day the doctor asked if my husband and I could step into a private room to have a “chat”. Before we even entered the room, I could sense that something was not quite right about her demeanour and my stomach started to knot, because I thought to myself “why would she need to speak to us in ‘private’ if everything was OK?”

What followed seemed like a bad dream, like it wasn’t really happening and we would suddenly wake up to a reality contrary to what we were currently being told.

Trying to process what I had just heard, thoughts began to flash through my mind. “How can any of this be real?... Surely there is some sort of mistake?... What is Moe thinking right now?... Should I turn to look at his face?... Should I hold him?... Hold on! We’ve prayed about this situation and we trust God’s word is true and will not fail!... She’s been through worse in her life and has come through just fine!... How are we going to cope without her?... How can this be happening to us at a time like this?... Maybe this is just a test of our faith to see how we will react?”. Question upon question upon question.

Things very quickly went from 0-60 in just a few days and there was so little time to actually process everything that was unfolding right before us and those few days proved to be the most challenging any of us had ever faced.

There were mixed emotions, as we still tried to hold on to God’s promises that the situation would turn around for the better. There were moments of pure silence, because none of us knew what else to say or pray. Moments of noise and conflict because naturally, we were all trying to deal with the situation in our own individual ways. There were times when we simply could not eat because our appetites had gone out the window and nothing tasted good.

I personally no longer felt the drive to do anything, be it business, taking care of the home, YouTube, blogging, ministry, nothing. Because my mind was on one thing only and although Mum had said we must carry on, I could not even bring myself to simply interact with people. Most of the time I just wanted to be left alone and I did not want to begin to imagine how my husband was feeling.

I don’t think anything can truly prepare one for the passing of a loved one, but we are pressing on and as the seasons begin to change from winter to spring, we hope for newness of life as we heal.

It is at times like this that everything is brought into perspective and just like the constant snow that fell on the week she passed, we realise just how fragile and precious life is, here today gone tomorrow. So we must really make the most of every moment we spend with our loved ones and not take anything for granted.

Kristene DiMarco’s song “It is well” [Click here to listen], has now come alive and has ministered to us in a way that it never really had before. Every single word brought about a reassurance of God’s peace and that His will is best, something we needed to be reminded of at this time.

Through it all, we cannot deny how faithful God has been to us and we are grateful that He was not silent. When we had specific questions, He answered them, be it in the form of a text message, a scripture, a word, a conversation, a hug, even through nature around us, He was speaking and is continuing to speak.

We are grateful that we got to spend time with her and glean wisdom from her as she instructed us before her passing; words that we will always treasure and hold dear to us.
We are grateful that her transition to Heaven was glorious and we can rest assured that she is in a better place where there is no more pain or suffering.
We are grateful for the beautiful legacy of resilience, hard-work and kindness that she has left; attributes that we will strive to instil into her grandchildren.
We are grateful that this is not good-bye because we know we will meet again.

As I conclude, though the pain of not being able to see her anymore still stings, even though we may not fully understand everything, we do know that life must go on and through it all and with God with us, ‘It is well’.


Please watch my accompanying video of thanks by clicking the link below:

Thursday, 1 February 2018

Comfortable with Change

Being comfortable with change is not easy, but something that is necessary to allow us to advance to the next level. We cannot remain idle while life passes by and there is far too much potential in each and every one of us to keep it all lock in. 
So determine this new month to make a change, no matter how little and watch as things begin to unfold.

Remember it's better to voluntarily make change(s) NOW, then be forced into changing later on. 
I.e: It is better for someone with bad eating habits to change those habits now, than be forced into changing their lifestyle/ eating habits once they suffer ill health due to those habits.

So check out this quick motivational video I put together to help stir you into action, because time waits for no one.
Im wishing you all a LOVEly February. 

As always,
Peace & Love. Antoinette


PLEASE CLICK THE LINK BELOW TO VIEW THE VIDEO
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n-8jgT6KcKQ

Sunday, 28 January 2018

Quick and Easy Potato Curry Recipe


Looking for a quick and easy delicious meal that you can russle up within minutes, then look no further. Packed full of flavour, this recipe video will leave you locked-in and licking your lips before it’s even served up. 
So enjoy the watch and let me know how you get on, if you do decide to make it. #ConfidentLiving






Ingredients:

4 large Potatoes
4 finely chopped Tomatoes (Vine)
1 Red Onion
2/ 3 Tablespoon Oil
Cup of Water
2 Tablepoons of butter
Naan bread (or accompaniment of your choice)

Spices:
Few Curry leaves
Cinnamon stick
2 Cloves
1 Cardamom
½ tablespoon Fennel seeds
6 finely cut Garlic cloves
Half a Ginger root (finely cut)
1 small Green chill
1 Teaspoon Turmeric powder
1 teaspoon Chill powder (optional)
Coriander leaves
1 tablespoon Coriander powder
1 Spoon Cumin seeds
1 Maggi cube, knorr cube or teaspoon of salt (optional)


*Serves 4 (moderate portions)

PLEASE CLICK THE LINK BELOW TO VIEW THE VIDEO