Miessence

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Miessence logo picture “borrowed” from miessence.com

A little over two years ago while searching for organic and eco friendly cosmetics, I stumbled upon a brand named Miessence.  They claim their organic products are even food grade!  I was excited about this company and the various products they offered.  At the same time I got sad because it didn’t seem like an easy feat to get my hands on the products here in Norway.  Miessence is based in Australia and is an MLM (Multi-level Marketing) type business… you know… like Mary-Kay, do-Terra, Forever Living, Tupperware.  Couldn’t find any Miessence reps in Norway so that meant I would have to order through their site… And with Norway’s not-so-generous limit (350nok including shipping) before getting hit with ridiculous import taxes, I’ve yet, to this day, tried any Miessence products.

These days, I’m trying to figure out a way to earn an extra income while also having some flexibility with my time to spend with Rimas.  That makes me wonder if I should try out the world of home based businesses.  What does it actually take to succeed in this world?  I read up on Miessence as a company and googled reviews and so far it seems like quite a legit company with quality products.  But without trying out the products myself, I suppose it would be quite difficult to just start “selling” them right off the bat.

Have you been or are you in a MLM type business?  Does it work for you?  How long did it take for it to become a lucrative business for you?  What challenges did you face?

 

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Young Girls and Hijab

There seems to be an issue with girls wearing hijab in Norwegian politics.  They want to ban the use of hijab in elementary schools because among some of the arguments is that hijab use sexualizes young girls and hinders “integration”.

Personally, I haven’t cared too much about this debate.  I’ve just browsed comments on forums just enough to know it’s a thing.  I do have my own opinions on it, but don’t feel it’s such an important thing to be hung up on.  So if it’s really not something I care much about, then why dedicate a blog post to it, right?

Well, here’s what happened today…  We get ready to go out to run some errands and out of the blue, Rimas says “I want to wear my hijab today…”.  Because, I want to be a parent that gives my child freedom to choose (as long as it’s not something dangerous etc.), I tell her that’s fine assuming she’ll just take it off again a few minutes later.  That’s what she usually does when she wears it at the mosque.  Before putting on her shoes, she asks me to put on her two-piece light pink Amira style hijab and proudly checks herself out in the mirror before heading out the door.

By the time we’re at the parking lot of our first stop, she’s still wearing it as she gets out of the car.  As we walk and people see us I just imagine they must all think that I’m one of those parents who “force” their little kids to wear hijab.  Honestly, I feel a bit uncomfortable and just hope she’ll get tired of wearing it and take it off.  That moment never happened.  It came off at one store and she demanded I put it back on for her.  Every time people saw us, I just immediately felt like they were thinking I made her wear it even though this is just as prejudice on my part as the people trying to get this hijab-ban into law.

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What would you think if you saw a young girl in public wearing hijab?

Packed & Ready for Tomorrow

Finally done packing for Tanzania (and my overnight layover in Dubai)!

Tried to pack as minimal as possible though it was quite a challenge as I had to pack for two more people.  Would have done way better if it was only my stuff I had to bring with me.  Not particularly looking forward to lugging the giant of a backpack to the airport tomorrow.  We will see how it goes…

The backpack I’m using is a Fjällräven Kajka 100L.  There’s still space for more stuff, but when I tried to carry the bag, I felt it was really heavy already.  Even though it’s fully adjustable, I just feel the backpack is way too big for my body.  If I only had to pack my own things for the trip, I would probably have opted for a backpack like the Osprey Farpoint 70.  At least I won’t have to carry the giant backpack much once I reach Tanzania, nor will I have to worry about it during the layover in Dubai.  I’ve packed my necessities for my overnight stay in my carry on backpack which is the Herchel Supply Little America.  

Gotta get some sleep now before the trip begins…  

Summer Vacation & Thoughts on Self Reflection

So my summer vacation has officially started.  I’ve had a few days of just “me” time and on Friday I’ll be on my way to Tanzania (with a pretty long layover in Dubai).  Rimas left on her vacation already this past Friday.  She’s in Egypt visiting family for a week before Tanzania.  We’ve managed to book accommodations for Mikumi National Park as well as Zanzibar.  Now I’m just finalizing all the packing logistics.  I really like the concept of the minimalist lifestyle, also when traveling.  I’m trying to only bring stuff that I will actually use and not pack stuff that would serve no purpose at my destinations.  It’s been quite some time since I’ve gone on a proper vacation, so I’m really looking forward to this trip!

Between thinking of the Tanzania trip and getting stuff ready for that, I’ve spent some time reflecting on many things…  like this blog.  I didn’t write for about a month because I wasn’t sure if I should continue or not.  Will people read it or not?  Is my life interesting enough to blog about?  Why should I expose my life (and my daughter’s life) online?  What’s the point?  Yes… I was basically pouring self-doubt on myself.  But then I decided that when it comes down to it, it really doesn’t matter.  I want to blog and therefore I should just blog and not be overcritical about myself.  Another thing I want to do that I’ve probably wanted to do more than blogging is vlogging.  And again the self conscious part comes out to stop me from ever starting.  What I need to do is to stop putting it off and just jump right in!

Zantastic Vacation Plans

We’re going on vacation!!!

Well not quite yet… July to be more exact, which really isn’t that far away seeing how this year’s just zooming by at an even quicker speed than the last…

So we’re taking a family vacation to Tanzania.

Rimas has been repeating that she wants to go on a vacation where she can hang out at a warm beach sipping on a coconut. Where did she get that idea from???

First, we looked into Spain… but for a “beach vacation”, Spain just felt too “typical”. It’s what everyone in Scandinavia does. I wouldn’t mind going to some resort in Turkey or Morocco… or even Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt! Then we thought South Africa, but it looks like it wouldn’t be warm enough in July. Looked a bit further north and Tanzania just stood out. Images from Planet Earth type nature documents came to mind… The more we talked about it, the more we liked the idea and went ahead and booked our flights.

We’re going to be there for about 2 weeks and so far we’re thinking of first staying in Zanzibar and then out for a safari at Mikumi.   Serengeti will be a bit far and we’ve heard that Mikumi is like a mini Serengeti, making it a bit more kid-friendly.

Soon after we booked the flights, we ordered the Tanzania Lonely Planet, but other than that, we haven’t actually booked any hotels or anything else.

We should really get to it now that we’ve only got a month and some days until we’re there, but I’m conflicted when I read the reviews for hotels/resorts in Zanzibar. We want to stay a few days in Stone Town and then a few days at a beach resort, but I can’t seem to find a place that I really like… well based on the pictures and reviews… Actually, there’s one resort, Melia, but that’s way out of our price range.   Also need to look into some organized activities that Rimas would enjoy while on the island.   The challenge of planning for a destination I know so very little about is exciting but difficult when thinking about Rimas. We can’t exactly just arrive and figure things out once we’re there with a kid in tow. Or can we?

Can’t wait to go!

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Not exactly sure why a shoe store in Oslo is called Zanzibar, but we thought it was cool to see it last Saturday.

If you’ve been to Tanzania, please share your experience in the comments. I also appreciate if you have any recommendations on places to stay and experience, or do you have any not so common tips for traveling with kids?

Sustainable Summer Clothing Search

We need clothes!

Warmer weather’s here and this afternoon I went shopping shorts for Rimas and found it to be quite a challenge.

Our main rule is to stay away from fast fashion. Places that possibly get their products from sweatshops is not something I want to support. But where does one go to buy clothes from sustainable producers without having to file for bankruptcy? I have no idea of where I can buy clothes for Rimas here in Oslo… let alone for myself… And let’s not even bother mentioning footwear…

Is really browsing Etsy the only option I have?

I feel frustrated. We all need a few essentials for the season and I feel stuck. We checked out a few kid’s clothing stores in Grunerløkka, but didn’t really find much. Apart from the whole sweatshop issue, what’s up with girl’s shorts being so incredibly short? Previously, I’ve ended up buying shorts in the boy’s section because I can’t find knee-length shorts for “girls”… Which reminds me of yet another topic: gendered children’s clothing. There needs to be more unisex/gender neutral children’s clothing stores.

Fortunately, it wasn’t a completely failed shopping attempt. At a shop called Lillefot (Little Foot), I bought a pair of Ebbe knee length shorts. I don’t know enough about the brand other than that it’s a Swedish company, but I’m just hoping they’re not using sweatshops for their clothes production. How does one go about finding out about stuff like that?

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I didn’t have good lighting when I took the picture of the shorts, so the color is off, but it gives an idea of what they look like.

I desperately need help, so please leave a comment and tell me where I can buy sustainable children’s clothes that aren’t from a sweatshop and won’t cost an arm and a leg?

Kid YouTuber

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Recently, Rimas keeps telling me she wants to have her own YouTube channel. She enjoys watching different toy and game themed channels. When she first started watching them, she’d get jealous and say she also wanted to have whatever the videos were featuring. Then in the past few weeks, she’s shifted her focus and wants to film her own videos. While she’s playing, she keeps pretending she’s actually filming a video. Last Saturday, we were at Toys R Us where she got to pick out a few blind bags, and on our way home, she said she was going to film a video of her opening them. We’ve filmed a few videos of her, but haven’t uploaded any of them online. For now, I think we’ll wait it out and see if her interests for making real YouTube videos goes away.

Do you let your kids watch surprise egg, toy, and game themed YouTube videos?

What is your opinion on them?

If allowed, how do your kids react to them?

How would you react if your kid wanted to start their own YouTube channel?

 

First blog post

After years of wanting to start a blog, I’m finally DOING it.

My vision for this blog is to share tidbits of our daily life along with sharing views and information on holistic living. I would like to share simple family friendly recipes, parenting tips, my interests, and other relevant experiences we come across as a multicultural and multilingual family living in Oslo, Norway.

Let me know if there is anything that you’re wondering about or if you have any suggestions to topics you’d like me to cover.

Hope you’ll check back for more updates!