Ankara In Disney

From my LAJAgram, you’ll know I was in Florida last week. Disney was one of my stops and it was a short and VERY eventful two days. I really need to share this story because it almost feels unreal that such events took place with such coincidences… Or shall I say divine intervention?

 
The Day Before
The day before Disney, my DSLR dropped to the ground for the first time in its (and my) entire life. I froze died inside. I had planned to shoot every single one of my outfits during the trip. I was ready; outfit, makeup looks all the way down to locations then this just happened. My lens protector broke BUT my camera and lenses were very okay. Phew! I had to postpone my shoot because my photos were just not coming out right. Yes, it was one of those days. You can see that outfit here. Onto the next day, you’ll think things actually turn out for the better… LOL, I say. LOL.
 
Day 1
 We visited Magic Kingdom on our first day and it was AMAZING! The rest of my family had already been so I was the only one extra starry eyed. There was a very lovely parade that reminded me so much of Universal Studios but we had ice cream, entered a whole bunch of rides and had a great time. Fast forward to 5pm, it started pouring out of no where #typicalFloridaweather. 
The wind was crazy and it pretty much ruined everything since we had to cut our day short. Here’s something you should know about me. You know I love photos, I really do. Keeping this in mind, I also happen to carry 3 cameras at the same time; my DSLR, my point and shoot and of course, my beloved phone. Yeah, don’t ask why.
 
Now back to the story. It was pouring rain and we decided to leave since all the rides were closed down and the forecast wasn’t looking promising. There’s a tram that takes visitors to and from the car pack but lo and behold, we got of the wrong stop… Mind you, I was already wet because the tram was very open. No umbrella, no raincoat, nothing. Perfect. Just perfect. In the pouring rain with my battalion of gadgets in my purse. It was so bad. I was soaked down to my underwear. The only thing I kept thinking was “Oh my gosh, my cameras!” I thought my bag would offer some type of shield…How delirious of me, I know. One things for sure, movies make rain scenes look so romantic. Okay,I admit it was actually fun looking like a lost puppy in the rain. It would have made a better story if I didn’t have all my important things in one place. I wanted to fling someone to Jericho. I was pissed and in denial about the welfare of my cameras. Fifteen minutes later, we found our car (finally) and drove home. It rained all night.
 
Day 2
I absolutely forgot about the events of the previous day and decided to shoot some outfits early in the morning. The denial was real. My DSLR was working but my lens were clouded. Water got in (duh) and I didn’t realize the gravity until I dismantled the parts and my camera was quite frankly dripping H20. 
 Skipping the tantrum parts, Epcot park was on the agenda for the day! I had a great time although Epcot was more educational and there weren’t as many puke-inducing rides as I would have liked. Although I was down one camera, I still had 2 back ups; my phone and point-and-shoot. Evidence for why I say the gadget gods were against me; my second camera took two pictures and just stopped working. Just like that. I tried everything, the camera was just not having it. Now, I’m down to just my phone and that’s when the battery decides to die. At this point, I’m just a mess, ughh! The series of unfortunate events were just too much! There was so much to capture but unless someone creates a device that allows you relive people’s experiences or live through their eyes (that’ll be awesome), those images will forever be in my head to cherish. So, for the most part of day 2, I had no camera… and no outfit posts.
Some highlights for me, I entered a kiddie ride and it was a “tour” around the world. I was SO excited when I saw various African prints (specifically ankara) in the section representing the African continent. A huge upgrade from desert safaris cohabited by wild animals and humans living in huts! #AnkaraInDisney! That was huge hit for me. Another one was the humongous ball. I took a million pictures with it. I couldn’t get enough. 
Later in the evening, I had Vietnamese food for the first time, more specifically Pho. My brother raved about it and being a culture and food junkie, I had to tick it off my bucket list! Anyone who knows me knows I’m a huge pasta/noodles fan. I was a very, very happy bunny. It ended on a really high note. Plus, I had missed Florida SO much and it was great to be back even for a short period. It holds a special place in my heart.
 
I’ll definitely be back to Disney, I haven’t had my “fill” of it yet and there’s still so much to explore. I loved rocking my ankara pieces there, of course! Though I had to postpone all my shootings till later, it just really taught me that I need to calm down, put away the camera and enjoy the moment… Through my own eyes. Clearly, I was very disturbed but I survived. 
 
What’s your experience with Disney? Highlights? Lowlights? Let me know in the comments below!
Always,
Miss LAJA

Take A Break

 Some photos from my Spring Break last week. I don’t know where to start. First thing first, I went on beach retreat with my campus Christian ministry where we stayed in rented beach houses. It was absolutely amazing and exactly what I needed. It was a great week of chilling and sleeping and eating and not sleeping and beaching. In short, It was absolutely stunning.


One of my biggest highlights was paying a visiting to this 93 year old lady who still lived independently. She does the basics like cooking, light cleaning (she has someone who comes in to do heavy cleaning each week) and she still drives! Of course within the town to places like church and the post office but being able to drive at that age is still INSANE. I was inspired beyond words. That’s some #oldpeoplegoals right there. 

Another one of my highlights was just staying up super late watching movies, playing games and just chatting with friends about random stuff like silly characters cartoons to relationships. Playing Jenga and cards really pushed my heart rate to its limits. Talk about tension, geez! I definitely appreciated late night or shall I say early morning conversations. It’s probably a mixture of the delirium you feel from staying up too late and just really good company. I already accepted the fact that I talk a lot a long time ago but I actually surprised myself some nights. I’d say to myself “Dayumm, Ashan-wa you actually need to shut up and chill”. I’ll just take it as evidence of a good time so no complaints here, haha.

One last thing was definitely the weather because… Well, because. The odds were in our favor and it was gorgeous despite the grim weather forecasts. The sky and sunsets were magnifique I can’t explain how much I enjoyed waking up to crashing waves and a bright sunny day in the morning… actually more like 1:30pm cause that’s when I actually opened my eyes. Sorry not sorry.

It was definitely a blessed week and I hope you enjoy the pictures. Now I want a house on the beach, haha!

I can’t wait to share the pictures from the DukeAfrica show and talk about the experience. Gosh, it was crazy, crazy fun but till then, the interview I did with Duke a while back is finally out so check it out here! This is official my first video interview. Talk about #BlueDevilLove. 

Cheers to many more!
 
  
Always,
Miss LAJA

Confessions Of A BridesMaid

Couples that slay together stay together right?

Yeah, yeah there’s a lot more to it but it flows so well. You guys know through my Instagram (@miss_laja) that I attended a wedding; my cousin’s wedding to be precise and I was on the bridal train so of course I had to share the experience with you all!

The wedding took place across a span of 3 days (a day in-between the traditional and white wedding). I was jumping with excitement because orange, red and purple were included in the color theme. Woohooo, some of my favorite colors to the rescue! Check out the outfit though, and yes I tied my gele myself 🙂 Anyways, the traditional wedding was first and I got to act as the fake bride. Let me explain. Before the actual bride comes out, there are several “wanna-be” brides that come disguised in a veil to “deceive” the groom. He has to acknowledge to everyone if that’s bae or nah. Well, you can say the rejection was quite real, haha! The couple has a cup (usually filled with palm wine) and one gives the other to drink from it and vice versa after exchanging vows and with this they have traditionally tied the knot. By Nigerian standards, they are officially recognized as a married couple. Sweet! I wrote an article called “Let’s Get Married” for an International magazine on the dynamics of traditional marriage in the Ika tribe and pretty much Nigerian culture in general so check it out and tell me what you think!

Onto the White wedding, I suppose you know how that works so I’ll skip to the interesting part. I CAUGHT THE BOUQUET! Am I excited? Yes! Do I want to get married now? Not really… but you never know, hehe. This is the first time in my life I’m catching a bride’s bouquet and there were a lot of single ladies, haha! Don’t worry, I was very chic about it. No clamoring or thug of wars of any sort haha. Plus, most of the ladies on the bridal train were married so the ladies there were mostly guests. 
Do you believe in the folklore about being next in line if you catch the bride’s bouquet? I honestly never thought about it till now because I have never been in that position but at the moment, I’ll say not really. 
However, I’ll keep you update if I do get married this 2015 haha!

 

Always,

Miss LAJA

When In Dubai 2

And so the adventures continue…

Day 4
Today was so moist. Literally and figuratively. Earlier in the day, I was at a travel agency and the manager, a lady came to talk to us. I promise you, never in my life has anyone ever impressed me SO much under the span of 15 minutes. Never. Her presentation, her eloquence, her confidence plus her sense of style, modest and clean to top it all. Everything. Beautiful. I don’t know her name but I’m writing about her because I don’t want to forget the way she made me feel. She was a financial analyst. After talking to her, as of that moment, I started considering looking more into that field. Yo, I was in awe and I couldn’t stop talking about her. Too inspiring. I wish you could come into my brain/heart and see/feel what I did.

Then, the fun part, we went to Atlantis. It was lovely. I didn’t get to do as many rides (my fault) because I got addicted to a particular one and entered it like 100 times plus the lines were crazy long. Oh well, there’s always next time. Oh and the shark tunnel was scary cool! Imagine being in a tank where a chunk of glass separates you from being one with the water world. Crazy, isn’t it?

Day 5
Today was the bittersweet day. The plan was to climb Burj Khalifa (tallest building in the world) but everything was booked that day and the next. Sadly, we were to leave 2 days after. Talk about pissing me off. I was ready, I had already planned the spots for photos/videos, in fact I was already editing the video of the climb in my head I wish I could say I’m kidding but I’m really not. It’s not everyday you get to climb the tallest building in the world. So, so close but there’s always next time! On the other hand, we were in the Dubai mall (world’s largest mall AKA my 2nd home) and that was another spectacle in itself. Nawa, they just keep setting record after record. No slacking. Seriously, there are crazy intelligent people in this world.

Day 6
This was the chilly, willy relaxing day. I slept like mad because truth be told, I haven’t sleeping that much, hehe. Plus I’m leaving the super duper early tomorrow so right now (not now now), I’m sitting in bed writing this article, listening to music then Zzzzzz…

Day 7
Up in the early am. Jet, set, 9ja! Bye for now, Dubai! Till we meet again.
Time to get back to the real world aka school 🙂 
   
Shout out to my family for always
helping out with my photos! *hugs&kisses*
Always,
Miss LAJA

When In Dubai

A well spent week in Dubai, so bitter-sweet!


As promised the photos of my adventures in Dubai! It was a blast so I’ll break down my highlights for each day one at a time.

Pre-arrival
It was so hectic! We arrived at our boarding gate 5 minutes before our flight was to leave. All of us were running like CRAZY and to make matters worse better, Davido was also on our flight. I was so stressed out I almost didn’t notice him and there was (of course) a crowd of people wanting to take photos. Funny enough, it wasn’t the passengers causing the drama, it was the staff at the boarding gate telling people to wait so they could take pictures with him BEFORE they checked our boarding passes… 5 minutes before our flight was to leave. Haha, only in Nigeria. Sadly I didn’t get a photo with him if not I would have definitely done a sighting post but just wanted to share this little bit. It was either him or Dubai. Oh and he was a lot more attractive in person just throwing that in there. Though I love his music, I wasn’t really moved by his looks when I saw him in photos. I don’t know if it was the stress of almost missing my flight or the lighting that clouded my vision but I was very much impressed. Haha! 

Oh and I finally watched The Fault In Our Stars. I already knew it was quite a sad movie, so I basically cried from beginning to end. My sisters thought something was wrong with me. The happy parts, I cried. The sad parts, I cried. I like to think of it as rationing/sharing my tears. I cried so much my ears got blocked and I had a headache. I also had a cold and that heightened the pressure in my ears so much I thought my eardrums were going to explode. It was horrible but very worth it. Great movie.

Day 1

Day 2
Plans changed but we eventually went to the Desert Safari and I’m so glad we did! It was so much fun. Quite a drive but so worth it. There was a “bumpy ride” through the desert to the tents (I posted a video on my Instagram @miss_laja), the panoramic views were breathtaking/instaworthy, we rode camels, held falcons, got some henna tattoos, had dinner, I could go on and on but it was fulfilling. It got quite cold into the evening and we weren’t exactly dressed for the weather so we had to cut it short!

Day 3
Today was the Dubai bus tour, we got to visit and see a bunch of places from the Dubai museum (the oldest building in Dubai!) to Jumeirah beach. In fact, my sister and I almost got left behind because we were busy taking photos, haha. The Gold and Spice Souks just brought the thirst to a whole new level. Yummy, yummy, gold/diamond pieces had my eyes like O_O 
We got a breakdown on the history of the Palm Islands (world’s largest man-made island/one of the Wonders of the World). After the tour, I was mind blown. As in, the Arabs know how to enjoy themselves! No wonder Nigerians love them. I couldn’t count how many times they asked my family and I if we were Nigerian, haha. There are sooo many new projects coming up there and it’s amazing seeing how much they’ve accomplished in less than 2 centuries. Dayuummm!


To be continued…

Always,
Miss LAJA

LAJAlights of 2014

In a nutshell…

2014 was a really exciting year for myself and my site as things were created and things also kinda fell apart. One of the very first ones was my trip to France where I spent six gorgeous weeks and it was simply amazing. If you know me, you’ll know I love the language and culture… well most of it, haha. I do LOVE traveling but this trip meant a lot to me because I actually won a scholarship. I was so happy because I felt like I helped my parents by taking the weight off their shoulders, like I was giving back to them and it felt good knowing I did it myself. Makes sense? 

At the beginning of fall (or autumn), I revamped Miss LAJA’s look and I am soo in love with it. Though it’s not exactly where I want it to be, it’s a lot closer than where I’m coming from. For real, when I look back at my old posts, the makeup of my images from quality to my poses (some of which make me cringe hardcore), I’m so amazed by how far I’ve come and how much has changed in the passed year. Literally, a year ago. Seeing these massive improvements, I’m really curious and excited for what 2015 has to offer.

I also had my first feature on Intice followed by a more recent (and bigger) one on ThisDay. Hmm, till now I’m still wondering if it’s real. I don’t even know what to type because I’m at a loss of words. It might seem small to some but I am SO happy/humbled seeing Miss LAJA’s flames growing and touching more people. I also added a new section, of selling African prints etc and that’s undergoing a lot of reconstruction so stay tuned! All I can say is cheers to more!

This semester, I also decided that medical school wasn’t the place for me and this actually caused me to panic (a lot) because I had always said I would become a doctor (specifically dermatologist) for as long as I can remember. I was a lot more confident because my parents didn’t impose the idea on me so I was so sure it was meant to be. Plus, I have never been the type to always change my mind. I realized a disjoint because my love for Miss LAJA kept growing and I didn’t feel the fire or excitement when I thought of MCATs, health related internships and the likes. I wasn’t as motivated and I realized that as things got tougher, “being good” wasn’t enough if I didn’t have the interest/passion to fall back on. I don’t mind suffering but I’d much rather suffer for something I love and believe in.
I feel/felt a lot more at peace, I slept better (believe it or not) and I didn’t have the nagging feeling that I was making the wrong decision. Okay, I did a bit but everything seemed to be pointing me away from medical school and I didn’t see any point trying to fight myself and waste time in the process. So yes, this semester was a rough one for me and for some strange reason, people I’ve spoken to had similar experiences. Maybe there’s something in the air? All in all, I feel like I’m in a much better place. I’m still trying to find other ways to express my love for beauty and skin (yes, skin) that isn’t necessarily dermatology. I won’t say I’ve figured everything out to a tee but the future looks brighter. A lot is still changing but once I declare my major(s) in Spring, I’ll definitely share!

Enough, with school but yeah, the year has been something and I also have you guys to thank. I can’t count how many times I’ve opted to work on this site instead of doing homework. Hehe, I like to call it “Positive Procrastination” but seeing more of you guys hop on board this past year has been one of the best things. Like, I’m not alone and talking to myself… Or am I? Haha!

Thank you to my family, my friends and you reading this. For pushing me, guiding me and holding me up. You’re the real MVP.
Cheers, my loves as Miss LAJA officially welcomes 2015. It’s only the beginning.

See you next year…


Happy New Year,
Miss LAJA

Fall Break

Though not celebrated by many universities, this break was VERY much needed and I thank God for it. Anyways, it was a chilled weekend plus a Monday and Tuesday of sleeping, chilling and attempting (quite unsuccessfully) to get work done. I also really appreciated the weather this past weekend. It was a rainy but still warm. I’ll pick that over the cold any day!


I went on a food tour and got to visit the farmer’s market and of course eat food… I also tried bubble tea for the first time. Nope, wasn’t feeling it at all. Anyways on to the pictures! I’ll let them speak for themselves. And don’t forget to enter my giveaway, one more week left! For those of you that had a fall break, I hope it was replenishing like it was for me and for those who didn’t, ayah, diariz God o! Don’t worry, Thanksgiving is coming…
Purple, orange and white flowers… My kinda combo
Not that I’ll ever wear this out or anything…
Beeswax candles
Does this ankara hair-tye look familiar?
The cooked samples were SO good *swoon*
Ram head… Aries…
My friend said this looks like kontomire… She’s Ghanian 
You know it’s real when it’s half a sandwich on half a plate…
Chop knuckle
Paid for this later… T’was good though
Sneak peak
These bad boys just came in…
Wherever there was food, there she was…
Looks like I’m about to speak into the rod…
 Always,
Miss LAJA

Reminising France…

Just some unrealeased photos from my 6 weeks in France… And mostly because I miss it like crazy and there’s a lot left ushared. Pictures like these remind me of why I love blogging so much. Enjoy…
Le Sacre-Coeur…
They just got married… Aww!
Looks like I’m pouting so I might as well go with it
Musée du Louvre
From Maison de Bertillon
Shhh… Notre Dame
Outdoor concerts on rainy nights… Next to the Bastille
Favorite painting. Photo doesn’t do it justice but “L’Apparition” by Gustave Moreau.
Moroccan greatness… Couscous *drum roll*
Hit hard by the wind
Scents from Provence. Yum
Magnifique
Trocaderro
Real bones… The Catacombs
“Think every morning that you might not last till night time and at night, that you might not last till morning” Hmmm…
Fete de la Musique… unforgettable
Selfie
 La brochette sounds fancier than fried rice and chicken
Outfit here
One cannot take a picture infront of the Notre Dame in peace
Attempt at e-Graffiti at Cite de la Musique
Musée d’Orsay… Oh hey lady in purple 🙂
More Selfies at Palais des Papes
Le Train Bleu in Gare de Lyon
YUMMMM!
Interior decor
Hubba hubba!
Outfit here
Making macaroons…
Outfit for L’Ochestre de Paris in Salle Pleyel
The real deal… can you see the cameras?
Le Pont du Gard
Le Mont St Michel
Lafayette had me drooling
 
Batobus cruise on the Seine…
 Tu me manques,
Miss LAJA

Get To Know More About Miss LAJA (Liebster Award Tag)

Photo credit here
I was tagged in the Liebster award by Tiff of mabulledepensees. The essence of this tag is for you my dear readers to learn more about me and also discover new bloggers… Like me! 🙂


Who can be tagged? Any one can! In fact, I tag you!

Rules? Reveal 11 secrets about yourself, answer the 11 questions asked by the blogger who tagged you, make up 11 questions of your own and tag 11 other blogs! It’s that simple! Lots of 11s I know…
 
My 11 ‘Secrets’
  • I’m absolutely crazy about Beyonce… It’s almost unhealthy. She just inspires me so much. #BeyHive
  • I’m going to marry Ian Somerhalder one day… one day…
  • My favorite movie is Steve Harvey’s Think Like A Man and I cannot wait for the sequel to come out this year!
  •  I am an Amercian-born Nigerian. I was born in Dallas, Texas. I’m proud to be Nigerian/African and I express that in any way I can through my blog eg my excessive love for ankara material. Africa isn’t solely a continent with poor starving kids and I feel the negative aspects are publicized more than the positive which sucks.
  • I attend Duke University (It’s awesomeeeeeeeee!)
  • I absolutely love French language and culture. I’ve studied it for over 7 years and intend to continue doing so here in college.
  • God’s grace, I’d like to become a doctor specifically a dermatologist or cosmetic surgeon. 
  • I could talk about anything skin or beauty or self-care related all day if you left me or care to listen
  • I don’t like weaves. I have nothing against those who do but it’s just not my style. I tried weaves once but I couldn’t stand it and took it out after a week. Maybe I’ll change, maybe not. 
  • My friends call me Lizard (gotten from Lisa… don’t ask how cause I don’t know either), Hairy and Bushy (I’m really hairy, it’s not funny)
  • I have conversations and debates with myself. It’s really fun, you should try it sometime.
 
Tiff’s Questions
1.How old are you? 
I’m 17 turning 18 on the 28th of March
 
2. Why did you decide to create a blog?
I created this blog because I wanted to showcase the beauty of Nigerian/African culture but I can’t say that’s all I talk about. I also talk about things that have to do with college and anything self-care. Let’s just say a lot of things.

 

3. Do you watch series (eg Grey’s Anatomy)? If yes, which ones?
The Vampire Diaries (Team Damon), The Originals, Reign and America’s Next Top Model and the list goes on

4. Your favorite piece of clothing?
Ankara Shorts… Ankara everything…

5. Sweet or salty? If you prefer sweet, what is your favorite? And if you’re salty, what’s your favorite salty food?
Sweet. Anything chocolate and I’ll love you forever.

6. Cite your top 3 favorite blogs?
Carli Bybel, 5inchandUp, Atlantic Pacific, LeHappy and I basically just go all over the place. It’s more than 3 I know, oh well.

7. Tell us one of your fondest memories?
Not to be cheesy but it was when I got my acceptance letter into Duke. I didn’t know my tear ducts had such stamina. I cried so much (tears of joy) God help me that my next door roommate came knocking on my door cause she thought I was dying or something. Poor child, she was half asleep and I was a happy mess.

8. The best trip you’ve made?
To New York for United Women’s Conference. It was crazy! This is going to change though, I have something awesome coming up 🙂

9. What is your favorite makeup product? 
As of now, Rimmel London’s Stay Glossy in Timeless Allure
 
10. Rather long hair or short hair (squares, long)? 
Definitely long hair. Full and curly long hair.
11. Your favorite book 
Academic-ish: The Divine Comedy Series by Dante Alighieri (ABSOLUTELY BEAUTIFUL) and A Man For All Season by Robert Bolt (very inspiring).
Leisure: Goddess of Vengeance by Jackie Collins 
My Questions
Here are the bloggers I have tagged hoping you guys haven’t been tagged already:
I tagged these guys cause I want to know you all better! Do leave a link of your answers in the comments so I can read them! 
Even if you your name isn’t listed above, I tag you so leave a link to your answers in the comment box and I’ll be sure to put your name up and read your answers 🙂
My 11 Questions for Bloggers
1. Who is your role model?
2. What is your biggest pet peeve?
3. Why did you start blogging?
4. Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years?
5. Are you a Movie, TV Show, Music or Others person? What’s your favorite?
6. What does your favorite color remind you of?
7. Man or Woman Crush?
8. Guilty Pleasure?
9. Favorite Fashion Accessory and/or Make up?
10. What is your dream vacation?
11. Tell us something you have always want to but have not had the chance or guts to do it.
 Thanks again Tiff for tagging me in this! It was fun to do 🙂
Always,
Miss LAJA!
 
 

Purple Swag

Happy New Month everyone! December’s finally here and I couldn’t be anymore happier and grateful! Finals are around the corner (blehh) but so are the holidays so… 

Anyways, I got see my parents for the short holidays and that’s always nice! And btw, my bag? It’s actually made out of jeans trousers! Talk about going green! I got it from an Arts market a while back.

As for the jacket, it’s actually for guys and it’s in a large so it’s extra snuggy and warm and purple and I lovvve it!

Miss LAJA & Mummy LAJA
Always,
Miss LAJA