Showing posts with label Tributes. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Tributes. Show all posts

8 Interesting Ways to Remind Yourself That Every Experience Counts.

Source: Freepik

How did yours start? I mean the journey to where you are in your life at this moment. It all makes sense when you look backward.

For me, it all started with my love for cartoons,

which led to my love for drawing said cartoons. This, in turn, led me to take art classes in high school after which I took a detour and studied Business IT in University. All the while doing commissioned portraits for my classmates on the side.

The following is an account of my own experiences and how they have turned out well, in spite of me feeling like I had taken a wrong turn a couple of times such as in University. I know many of you have felt like this one time or another.

1.) Look back and identify that thing you've loved doing since childhood then pay attention to how life is nudging you to get back.

My detour introduced me to the world of Technology and Business which would then lead me back to the genesis, which was my love for cartoons.

How? well, I always had a wanting attitude towards computers and had avoided taking computer classes in favor of my art in High School.

I came to realize that it was because we were mostly taught theoretically and did not get to interact with the computers as much. Why? well, we had just one computer lab in a boarding school with close to 1000 students.

Fortunately, I got to enroll for IT essentials and Cisco Certified Network Associate classes right after finishing High School. The courses had lots of fun visual aids and were hands-on so I fell in love with computers as a result.

Source: Giphy

Once I got over my funk with Technology, I went on to graduate with a degree in Information Systems Technology from USIU-Africa.

My Tech background came in handy when I finally got back on track by enrolling for a certificate course in 3D Animation at Shang Tao Media Art College. I later met a lady that would end up changing my life in ways unimagined.

2.) Ask yourself who is doing the thing you love and succeeding at it.

Her name is Ng'endo Mukii and she is an Independent Filmmaker and Animator. I met her at a speed mentoring session called Match Mentor organized by The Arena Kenya.

When I first saw her that day, she was on the panel dressed in a lovely colorful African print jumpsuit. I loved her style, confidence, and I was impressed by what she had accomplished so far.

 After the panel discussion, a timer was set for us to go for our rounds of speed mentorship. It was like an intricate dance: one step forward, two steps back, turn to your left then go towards your right. This is the way we moved around in groups of 4-7 from one mentor to the next.

Maintaining a keen eye on her table, I continued with my dance around at the mentors stationed close to her. This continued until I eventually got the chance to go to her table. Our session felt super brief, but I remember leaving feeling so inspired, it had been worth the complicated dance.

3.) How can you be of help to them while in their presence as a mentee?

I got her contacts and right before I left, I asked her if by any chance she had an internship position in her company. She replied that she did not have any at the moment but I should email her and remind her I was the lady with a head wrap so that she could remember me.

I did as requested knowing too well that if I did not, she might not have remembered who I was considering she had met dozens of new people on that day. She was friendly in our conversations online and I kept tabs with her thereafter for close to a year. She would later contact me while I was

doing the internship I wrote about here in India. 

 Source: Clipart

4.) Count your blessings and remember that everything is always working out for your good.

Funny thing is she was also in India at the time of contacting me, only in a different state. What are the odds?

The universe is truly interesting and I am in complete awe at how things unfold in life. I told her  I'd be delighted to intern for her when I got back home.

This is how I was blessed with an opportunity to work closely with Ng'endo who is not only an amazing human but also a multiple award-winning Animator. I got to see how she goes about her daily activities and it was amazing how easy she made all of it seem.

5.) Cultivate a strong relationship with your mentor and be as helpful as you can even after your period of working together.

My internship with her was such a great experience. She would later trust me with her extra work which I did remotely after the internship. And since we had built a strong relationship, she knew about things I was interested in and would send me links and email forwards on the same.

6.) Heed to their advice and be open to trying out the new things they recommend. After all, you have to be willing to change the way you do things in order to be like the people you admire.

In one of our many conversations, I had mentioned my interest in games. One day she sent me an email about a workshop happening at the Goethe Institute on gamifying African cities. I was intrigued by the whole concept and so I applied and got in.

I had attended one-week workshops before so I was eager to absorb the knowledge and simply move on with my life. This particular workshop was different; it introduced us to a project called Enter Africa.

So when we were told about the magnitude of the project that is, it's running in 14 other African countries concurrently and the requirement to commit for the next two years, it all came as a surprise to me.

It was during this workshop and subsequent meet-ups while working on the project, that I started

getting acquainted with concepts such as gamification.

All the same, it ended up being a pleasant experience. I was sent to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on a one-week workshop and then to Munich, Germany to be a panelist for my very first time representing Enter Africa Nairobi.

7.) Request for help from your mentor when called to do something they have done numerous times.

I remember how ecstatic I was when I read the email that I had been chosen to represent the Enter Africa network as a panelist in Germany. Once all the excitement had died down and some normalcy kicked in, I realized that I would need some help preparing for the panel discussion.

So I called Ng'endo to share the good news with her as well as to ask her what she would advise me to do in preparation. I did as I was told and I remember being super calm and confident on D-day. Her advice had been of great help.

8.) Be open to change the trajectory of your life when you stumble upon new things that align with your interest and that compliment your passion.

We finished our 2 years as members of the Enter Africa project last year. I even compiled a list of gratitude messages from the team members below.

During my stay in Germany, which I was fortunate enough to extend to one month, I got to meet a Kenyan doing his PhD there. I first met him at the Munich Media Days Conference where I was speaking and later on we set a meet up with him, my father and myself a couple of weeks later.

Coincidentally, he had already met my father a year before. When I informed him of what my father does for a living in Germany, he asked me for his name. And when I mentioned "Mutisya", he retrieved my father's contacts from his phone like magic.

Thanks to this meeting, I am currently preparing to pursue a Master's degree in Game Development and Animation for Film. My first love Animation has found herself a new partner and I'm totally fine with that.

 I am currently studying German on Duolingo

and looking forward to enrolling for German classes later this year. All the while reminding myself that whichever way it goes, all is well. After all, at the end of the day, I will have a new language added to my arsenal. And every experience counts. Now it's your turn to look back at your own life and remind yourself how every experience in your journey counts.

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Healthy Living : Yoga On Indian Rooftops

After sampling spicy Indian meals for a couple of weeks. My roommate who had also fallen in love with that tingling sensation and I decided that we needed to make some changes. Only we did not know that that decision, would attract someones attention and later give us a chance to experience Indian Culture soulfully.

Thanks to awesome hosts, a lot was done for us, from house cleaning to the preparation of savoury Indian delicacies. Those dining moments of pure bliss and a little too much indulgence were followed with guilt; an urge for us to take up exercise, and most importantly a decision to reduce our portions.

We got workout shoes and skipping ropes and started our morning workout routine, which included a dance routine by Bipasha  Basu and around 10 minutes of skipping rope.

I discovered Bipasha during my Campus days as an AIESEC member, so the workouts brought awesome memories of home with all the people I would work out with.

Even with those nostalgic memories, it was no easy task to keep up. And after a while, my roomie and I started missing out on some workouts. It was in those moments of near despair that AC came to the rescue.

If you read the piece on my life-threatening experience on Indian Transport you've met AC. See, AC wore many hats. Apart from owning what we called home for months, he would occasionally wear the cook's hat as well as the tour guide's cap on our first days in India.

During my time in India, I had also taken the habit of sparing around 15 minutes a day to meditate. It made me feel lighter, happier and more inspired. Some amazing ideas crept in between those minutes of silenced thought. And now, I have a meditation diary as a result. So the thought of reviving my yoga and practicing it alongside my meditation sounded Godsent.

"There's a world within, a world of thought and feeling and power; of light and beauty, and although invisible, its forces are mighty."

Charles Haanel.

I couldn't agree more.

How often do you stop, look at the sun and appreciate its presence? Well, I can't say I try; most of my mornings are usually very rushed.

Our first session was on the rooftop and AC introduced us to a Sun Salutation also known as Surya Namaskar. It was a great way to help me start my day on a high in the spirit of appreciation.

But before we move on, that sunrise threatened to leave me breathless. The fact that we were looking at it while elevated on the roof seemed to make it more spectacular.

He first took time to take us through the basics of yoga, the breathing techniques (pranayama) and the warm-up techniques that prepared our bodies for yoga.

He also talked about the chakras and tasked us with researching about kundalini yoga. The animation below shows how Surya Namaskar is done as well as its benefits. You can read more here.


AC was an inspiration to us, we learned so much from him about life. What stood out the most for us was how dedicated he was when he set out to do something. 

Some mornings when the cook was unwell, AC would wake up at 4 a.m to prepare breakfast and lunch for the 20 ladies or so that we lived with in the paying guest (PG). He would then join us for yoga at around 6 a.m and be ready before 8 a.m to tend to the PG and the other businesses he owned. His customer service was  impeccable. We were his first foreign guests and  he really worked hard to keep us comfortable.

AC's influence was so huge that my roommate ended up buying a yoga mat to use when she got back home. I, on the other hand, came up with a 20 mins yoga morning routine scheduled for 66 days  - which is the proven amount of time needed to form a habit. I'm still working on it. AC even contacted me a week ago to find out how I was as well as how my yoga practice is going.

To be continued...

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Ten Life Lessons (TLL) from Oprah

She is definitely an inspiration to me and that is one of the reasons I decided to draw her. Having taken weeks working on her dotted piece. I feel like I would also like to share some lessons I  have learnt from Oprah over the years.

Lesson 1: Honor yourself and be authentic
Put yourself at the top of the list, honor yourself, nurture yourself. Your being here is miraculous enough and your real job is to honor that and as soon as you figure that out. You will be like "Oh wow wow! I am one of the lucky ones I got to be here.

Fill yourself up and keep your cup full. She used to get offended when people said she is so full of herself but now she embraces it because now she considers it a compliment. It is when you are full that you have so much to offer.

Have fun and smile more

Lesson 2: Remind yourself to relax
If given a chance to say something to her younger self she would say relax it's going to be okay. She said this is because when we feel uneasy that is something telling us that we have to change.  When we feel off course that's our cue. 

We should therefore think of how we will turn around.Through the challenge sit still and ask ourselves what the next right move is. Remembering not  be overwhelmed by it because our lives are more than that one moment.

Step 1

Lesson 3:There's no such thing as an embarrassing moment.
She believed that there is no moment she can possibly experience on air that someone else has not already experienced. Even those that seem very embarrassing. 

When she started out she said this was not true for her because she was more interested in impressing other people than she was doing what she was supposed to do.

The take home here is you can laugh at yourself and you can make a mistake it is not the end of the world. You don't have to be perfect.

Lesson 4: Everyone makes mistakes
Actually there are no mistakes because we all have a supreme destiny. When you don't know that, you get stressed all the time. 

There's a supreme moment of destiny calling on your life. Your job is to hear that and to know that... and sometimes when you are not listening you get taken off track you get into the wrong marriage, the wrong relationship or you take the wrong job but it's all leading to the same path. 

There are no wrong paths. There's no such thing as failure because failure is that thing trying to move you in another direction. So you get as much from your losses as from your successes because your losses are there to wake you up.

If you understand that, you don't allow yourself to be deeply affected by a grade or a by a circumstance because your life is bigger than any one experience. Pay attention to your life. Your life is your greatest teacher. Everything that happens to you makes you go closer to who you are.
Step 2

Lesson 5: You are what you believe
Even as a child to her she was always the smartest kid in the room.That is how she convinced her kindergarten teacher to take her to a different class because she felt like she did not belong there. 

She wrote her a letter and told her she felt she did not belong there because she knew a lot of big words. (It's funnier when you watch her give this story) She was taken to the principals office where she was asked to rewrite those big words. After which she skipped first grade and second grade.

The fundamental key to success is what you believe is true to yourself. You don't get what you wish for or hope for you get what you believe and know to be God's dream for you.

Lesson 6: Learn to listen to your instincts. 
Did you know Oprah never thought of herself running a talk show. In fact in her teen years she wanted to become a teacher. 

She says every time she made a good decision it was because she listened to her inner voice and every time she did not make a good decision it was because she did not listen to it. Do what feels right for you.
Step 3

Lesson 7: Find out why you are here.
Your real job is to discover why you are here and then align your personality with your purpose and nobody can touch you.

Lesson 8: Be here now
Be present every time so that you get the most of every moment.  Stop carrying the past into this moment. Pay attention to the people you interact with and the environment you are in.

Step 4

Lesson 9: In business don't waste too much time looking at what other businesses are doing.

Think of it like a race. The energy it takes for you to look back at the other guys in the race takes energy from you. If they are too close it scares you. It's not about the other guy it is about what you can do.You just have to run that race as hard as you can and give it your all every time for yourself.

Lesson 10: Provide value
She used to complain about the state of Television until a friend mentioned to her that she could start her OWN network. Coincidentally the letters OWN were her initials. She thought it would be nice if she created a network that was about mindful Television.

The thought was scary to her at first and she said she would wake up frightened at night. The reason she pushed on was because she believed people need to have value centered, inspirational programming for themselves.


Step 5: A portrait of Oprah Gail Winfrey

In conclusion Someone once told me about a phrase. The phrase went "blacks don't crack". I liked how the words rhymed but the message behind it made me even happier. The phrase I was told meant that black or dark skinned people do not wrinkle or show age quickly. Having spent a couple of days drawing her and years watching her I totally agree. She is  truly beautiful both inside and out.

AA (Auspicious Art)
Wendi Mutisya

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Phenomenal Woman

I heard a song a couple of days ago and right there and then I pressed the replay button . I think I drove my sister crazy though 😜 . It was a classic case of music obsession. 

 Having recently enrolled for  animation classes I had no idea I would be learning how to create music too. Well mostly melodies and sound tracks but music all the same.

So now I am more keen when I listen to music just incase I spot a tune that inspires me for my class project.

A portrait of Fena Gitu

Although I feel like she ought to get more airplay she

is Fena-menal indeed.

She got me  humming, singing and listening to this chorus over and over again .
"Nampenda mpenda, nani? nampenda mpenda, nani? kijana mmoja, nani?
kijana mmoja, nani? a sikuli, nani? a siogi, nani? Nampenda mpenda,nampenda mpenda."

The words are in swahili and they simply repeat the fact that she loves someone and when asked who it is she says that it's this guy that makes her not eat and not shower 😂.

It is  a lovely song and although it has been out for a while now,  I had no idea until a couple of days ago. Has that happened to you before? It was a pleasant discovery. 

Her songs and music videos bring back great childhood memories as she incorporates clips of games we played and lyrics to songs we used to sing as kids.

A good example being what you just listened to. Have you listened to it though? Please do, and another example being her music video Brikicho where you see children playing hide and seek. Maybe that's why I could not stop listening to her song. It brought so many good vibes.

So join me today in celebrating this phenomenal woman Fena Gitu. I will make a point to keep myself updated on her songs, both new and old. I hope you do so too.

AA(Auspicious Art)
Wendi Mutisya
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Uniting Africans Through Music

If you were given a chance to insure a body part what part would that be for you? I think for Yemi Alade her lips would be it. 

Why do I think that you may ask. Well I heard that lip roll exercises help people sing better and reduce strain on the vocal cords.

Truth is I'm a bit biased as a visual artist. If only I could draw her vocals :).

These are steps towards the final piece of Yemi Alade's portrait. You may maximize for a better view.

Her songs have a profound effect on me. I remember how her song Africa featuring Sauti Sol  kept me company  during the wee hours of one morning after some nerve wrecking events that interrupted my sleep. The full story can be found here.

See Yemi Alade is a darling, she knows how to win peoples hearts. For me and many other  Kenyans it was as simple as translating her song Na Gode to Swahili. While for french speaking Africans it was the  translation of her song Kissing to french,

Language has an integral part in our societies because it gives us a chance to understand one another. Yemi Alade understands this and embodies other cultures outside her Nigerian roots through language and dress . These simple acts go a long way. They make what she does with her songs  a uniting force for Africans. Which is nothing short of amazing.

I hope that one day just like Yemi Alade  I will find a way to use my art to unite Africans.

AA(Auspicious Art)
Wendi Mutisya

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Connecting the Dots as Life Unfolds.

My first pointillism(dot work) piece this year

Happy New Year! I hope it has started on a good note for you. Mine has and I am grateful. 

Can you identify the guy above? He did Architectural drafting studies but went into rapping after graduating. He also acts and  he starred in a movie that was based in a Barber Shop last year. 

Life unfolds in interesting ways and at times we find ourselves doing things we did not think we would ever do in our lives. These things may be good or bad depending on how we look at them. One wise Wayne Dyer once said "When you change the way you look at things , the things you look at change."

Thus as the year starts lets try to look at things the way we would like them to be. Lets focus on what we want rather than what we do not want. On that note there are a couple of things we all want to achieve within the course of the year, some are a continuation from the previous year and some are totally new. Whatever the case we need to focus on the important ones, write them down and make a plan on how they will be achieved.

I will finish this piece with a quote from our Mystery Man today. "What I learned from Architectural drafting is that everything has to have a plan to work.You just can't wing it. I can't get all the materials I need for a house and just start building. Whether it's a career, family, life- you have to plan it out"

AA(Auspicious Art)
Wendi Mutisya

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Embracing the Art of Appreciation

So it's finally new year's eve and as Jah9 a Jamaican songbird would put it, "we're feeling irie (feeling great). There's nothing like smiles on our faces.It's about to be a beautiful day."

As we count down to 2017 think about what a blessing it is that we are alive and able to do so. There's nothing like the joy that comes with a grateful heart.

Just a month ago a friend suggested a 30 day gratitude challenge on her blog

Every single day we were meant to write down the things we were grateful for.It was meant to be anything you can think of but I must say it was not as easy as I thought it would be. I think we get so used to the people and things we have that at times we fail to acknowledge and appreciate their presence in our lives.

So my list was starving on the first week but with time it grew some flesh. My friend had a lot to do with my list growing since her lists always touched my heart and inspired new ideas on more things to be grateful for.

I cannot explain how  glad I am I embarked on that gratitude journey with her.  I would feel immense joy every time I gave thanks for something I used to assume before. I smiled more and at times when I did so while I was holding my phone my  nosy sister would peek and ask who it is that was making me blush so much. 

So as 2016 comes to an end instead of beating ourselves up like we tend to do this time for things  undone. I implore you to join me in appreciating the much we did and the things and people around us. We do not even have to put it in writing or say it out loud. We probably will not have much time to ourselves today for that anyway. 

How about we start with the simplest thing right now, like  giving thanks for having the eyes to read this. Let your eyes wander around you today and make an inward list of why you are so thankful for what you are looking at right now. Allow yourself to feel the ripples of joy flow in and through your body as you do so all day today. Who knows you could end up making it your 31 day challenge for the next month next year. Nothing serious just looking around and giving thanks for what you see easy peasy right?

Right, as I finish this piece I would like to thank you for being part of my life this year. Enjoy your day and don't forget to let your eyes wander and your mind generate that lovely gratitude list all day. Here's to a grand 2017 for us filled with lots of blessings.  

Wendi Mutisya

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My Art World- Through the Words of an Award Winner

Deep in Thought (Charcoal on Paper)
 by Allan Madegwa

"As a child I used to get any adult I could find to read me the comic segment on the magazines or newspapers I saw and managed to get my hands on.

The images on these comic segments fascinated me especially in the way they communicated to me. It is then, at that tender age that I figured this would be my means of expression.

A 20 year old student at Kenyatta University pursuing a degree in Fine Art and History. I'm an animator practising character design, concept design, story board and clean-up.

My fascination with drawing was fueled by my mother who is also an artist. Early schooldays did not encourage the development of the skill since art was not offered in the curriculum. I'd however draw for fun and also in a bid to be considered among the cool kids in class :).

 Potrait of Kalemera (Pen on Paper)
by Allan Madegwa

High School had me encounter the likes of  Mr. Shikanga, my Art teacher, who introduced me to the academic side of art. He contributed to my style thus influencing and boosting my imagination and creativity. 

Ms. Mwiti one of my Lecturers in Campus teaches us on the possibilities that line has on a blank surface and encourages it's use. Research led me to stumble upon a book known as Drawn to life. It's Author Stanchfield Walt uses line to express gesture, emotion and motion

 Glen Keane an American Author and Animator used line in the creation of the 'Beauty and the Beast', 'Tarzan' and 'The Little Mermaid'. Kim Jung Gi a Korean Artist confirmed the possibilites of line work and encouraged me to come up with a style of my own. These incidences made it clear that my path is in animation.

From then on I have always combined new knowledge and influences to a chosen scenario and the results have always been amazing.

Friends Paula Karanja, Edna Taabu and Nancy Chela

encourage creativity and keep the creatives on their toes. They influence my work and keep the dream of an African Animation Powerhouse alive.

I recently participated in a  project at GESCI AKE,

my first full animation, and it stretched my limits, possibilities and skills. I loved every bit of its production and I am open to new animation adventures because they are chances to learn and become the best.

My plan for the next five years are going to be geared towards building experience and gathering of knowledge to be applied in the next phase for the achievement of my ten year plan by which  talented youths can get employment or create employment through animation. Thus telling Our stories to the World, through the pictures and  animations we make."

Sunday Afternoon in Shauri Moyo (Ink on Paper)
by Allan Madegwa

I met Allan Madegwa at the MASK Award Ceremony

which was held at the Micheal Joseph Art Center Nairobi on the 23rd of June. We clicked the moment we met and sparked a conversation. I had no idea he was an awardee until later on. The three pieces above were his award winning pieces. His passion was evident in the stories he told me about his experience as an artist and that led me to ask him whether I could feature him on my blog. To my delight he  agreed instantly without any hesitation.I also got to meet Paula Karanja one of his great artistic friends. Who worked on an animation project that won her a MASK award the previous year. Clearly birds of a feather flock together :).

A video of Paula's Award Winning Art Piece that was converted to an animation titled: 
What the Noice Gave Me

I would like to thank Allan for his acceptance to be featured on my blog. I would also like to thank  Alla Tkachuk the director of MASK for her invitation to the 2016 MASK Award Ceremony. It was an amazing experience and thanks to that invitation I got to meet many like minded and inspiring artists.

Wendi Mutisya

PS: You can subscribe to my blog by submitting your email address in the Email Subscription section on the right side of this blog.

Video credits:
MASKcharity YouTube Channel

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The Inner Sight's Insight

Ever felt stuck? ... for John, stuck led him from deep-seated pain to blinding insight.The painful experiences he encountered became inner doorways to unseen opportunities.

Due to epileptic fits John started loosing his vision when he was in his teenage years.This was just about the same time I also started experiencing eye problems. The peak of my eye trouble being this morning, a day before my final practical art paper in high school.

I had never been so freaked out. I felt stuck. Am I going blind? was the question that lingered on my mind.

Sun rays pierced through my eyes like sharp needles. I had blurry vision and my eyes turned deep red. This time, there was no way the school nurse would let my condition go unattended. 

Seeing that I was in boarding school Mum had to be called. She rushed me to Lions SightFirst Eye Hospital.

The long queues din't phase me this time round cause I wasn't looking. I had to keep my eyes shut cause I was afraid that I'd behave like I'd lost my sanity if I opened them.

That my glimpse on how life would be if I lost my sight.

After what seemed like centuries I finally got to see her. The lady ophthalmologist who prescribed meds that I took almost immediately in a bid to relieve myself from the excruciating pain.

The pain now mild I was able to sit for my 4 hour art exam the following day. I'd never felt more grateful for my eyesight.

Painful eye allergies and infections kick in every now and then... but I don't sob and complain like I used to before that instance, that one morning, a day before my final practical art paper in high school.

It took that really painful experience to teach me how to handle my eye condition with grace.  My eyes are not as clear as I'd want them to be but I'm blessed with sight. I get tired wearing spects sometimes too but again I'm blessed with sight.

John Bramblitt's story took a sharp turn from mine when he turned 30 and completely lost his sight.

This led to depression. A deep-seated depression that later led to the discovery of a gift. A gift he was not aware existed within.

Video Length 2 minutes 30 seconds

A short video on John Bramblitt's resilience after going blind

We all have our versions of stuck and it is how we choose to handle them that either liberates or confines. Care to share yours? You never know who will read it and get inspired by your story. All the same I hope that you will use your stuck to liberate yourself.

Wendi Mutisya

PS: You can subscribe to my blog by submitting your email address in the Email Subscription section on the right side of this blog.

Video credits:
CBS YouTube Channel
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Zawadi Mutheu

Zawadi means a gift in Swahili and Mutheu means the clean one in Kamba. Zadady as we used to call her will always be our divine gift.This piece is dedicated to her and to my mother this women's day.

Your laughter was infectious and your smile so sweet. You came to our lives as a surprise, a pleasant surprise. You were the type of baby who warmed up to strangers so easily, one would think you had met them before.

Yours was a short life but the impact you left behind is immeasurable.Our bond as a family grew stronger as a result of your presence. A present in our lives that we treasured and will always treasure.

This Valentines eve we spent some time with you. We traveled upcountry and went by your graveside to pray and plant some flowers and trees. We do this every year in memory of your life with us.

It is during moments such as these that I appreciate the time we spend together as a family. It is a reminder that we are blessed. Blessed to have had you as a small sister, a daughter to Mum and Dad and blessed to have this chance to spend time with you.

Before the sun set we walked around Tala taking in the breathtaking scenery. At some point we could not help but take some photos.

Your sisters feeling your presence in the fields.

Kilima Mbogo

We believe that you are in a better place. I still see you. Today I smiled at a little girl on my way to work and she smiled back. I could see your smile in hers and that way I know you are always with us wherever we go. We love you Zadady.

Wendi Mutisya

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Mama Freida Brown

Shall I compare you to the Queen Bee? The mother of most if not all. So loved that your legacy is and will always be fiercely protected by many.

Or shall I compare you to the butterfly? The beautiful flying gem. All so marvelous yet so humble. The color of your wings magnificent yet somehow able to camouflage and deter the potential predator pride.

With the Grace of the Queen Bee for 21years you have led the swarm of USIU "NewBees" from their first year to their senior year leaving them fully developed, armed and ready to take on what life brings their way.

Like the butterfly dances in the wind. We will remember the ease with which you would break into dance as we celebrated together. The image of you dancing as we celebrated the previous Freida Brown day still vivid in many of our minds.

Although the comparison to these two beautiful creatures has been fun, you were a perfect example of the true potential of human beings. Juggling between being the great Vice Chancellor you were and serving in several other demanding capacities such as being a member in boards and chairing a couple of associations like the Kenya Association of Private Universities.

Robin Sharma the author of The Leader Who Had No Title clearly penned my thoughts when he wrote... "you don't have to have a title to be a leader. You just need to be a living human being. That's enough. That's all it takes. Because every single one of us alive in the world today has unrecognized powers and disowned potential that are far superior to the power conferred by a title.Once you learn to awaken and then apply those powers, every element of your life will explode into success. Leadership then becomes automatic the default at which you work and play. You'll know of no other way to be."

I believe this is how you've lived and will continue living even after USIU. So as you move back to your motherland we wish you well. I believe I speak for everyone when I say we will; miss seeing you walk around Campus , miss your enthusiasm and most of all miss seeing you dance during our various functions :-).

This post was inspired by you Mama Freida as well as Nashon and the rest of the ‪‎Caribbean date‬ USIU Radio team members Givens, Victor and Latisha who asked me to draw you. They wanted to bid you farewell with a gift and I am glad you liked it. Thank you guys for giving me the opportunity and thank you Mama for everything :-).
From the left:Victor, Givens, Nashon, Mama Freida and Latisha

Until next time.
Wendi Mutisya.

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