Man Crush Monday : Chef Takura

Every woman wants a man who can cook; okay I lie, I love a man who can cook so I will speak for myself on this one.  Imagine getting home to a meal prepared with nothing but tender loving care by your one and only.  Chef Takura (hello beard gang) took some time out to share spinets of his story with me and you can read all about it below.

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Chef Takura

I have always loved cooking, working in hospitality made the choice easier.

My favorite meal changes so often. I am into soups at the moment. I also always love making pizza and pasta from scratch because they are so versatile for toppings and sauces!!
I currently work at Forest Hills Resort as the Managing Director.  I love building and making our product better. Sadly I have very little time to cook. (There goes my dream to have a Chef Bae!)  Forest Hills is a beautiful location many places to hike and enjoy nature.
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Forest Hills
Being the wine lover that I am I couldn’t resist asking him on his thoughts on food and wine…
Pairing food and wine was my last job in Australia where I was the Head Sommelier (a wine waiter) at a Modern European Bistro. Pay attention to the weight of the dish as well as flavour. A hearty beef dish will go better with a full bodied red wine and a light spicy Asian dish would go better with a lighter white wine. Experiment a lot and see what your palette enjoys!!!
I do try and exercise as much as I can. The nice thing about living on a mountain is that EVERY walk has an incline!! I also like to swim and skip.
I have just gained a little more fitness and I get to see the area and take loads of nature photos.  The greatest challenge I have had so far when it comes to exercising is making time and there is no one to work out with out here.  Chef Takura needs to read about the benefits of running alone.  However, I do enjoy running, I will start running when I get someone to chase me!
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Shakshuka or eggs in rich tomato sauce
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Grilled Crumbed Fish Fillets with home made mayonnaise and pineapple salsa!
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Beef Fried Rice
You can get in touch with Chef Takura on Twitter and Instagram to stay up to date with his mouth watering meals and beautiful views that he constantly shares on social media.
©MaKupsy 2017

Album Review : While I Was Away (Prayersoul)

Music is the art of thinking with sounds. – Jules Combarieu

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Prayersoul

I had made one too many promises to attend one of Prayersoul’s events but last Friday I told myself that come what may I was going to go and watch his live performance.  The venue was well laid out with a comfortable sitting area, drinks that were reasonably priced and a bonfire to keep us warm because winter nights are not being very friendly at the moment. (well thought out if you ask me) Prayersoul was interactive with the intimate crowd throughout his performance.  That makes a world of difference because not only did he get to play his music he also took time to share his story with his biggest fans.  I found that to be one of the outstanding things about the whole show.  I got myself a copy of his new album While I Was Away and I could not wait to get home and have a listen.  Attending this do was my highlight of the week, I didn’t regret it at all.  It was a beautiful experience and you should have been there!

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While I Was Away is Prayersoul’s Second Album.  The NeoSoul musician released his 10 Track album early this year.  The album genre is mainly NeoSoul but it has a blend of a lot of African Nuances in percussion, guitars, rhythm, and vernacular lyrics in most songs but clearly all soulful.  I listened to his album all weekend long and I must say, I was not disappointed.

I already have not one but four favourite tracks from his album and you should have a listen.

Track 3: Uxolo

This was a pleasant surprise.  I didn’t realise that Prayersoul was a Bulawayo boy! Nothing wins me as much as listening in to music that has vernacular lyrics.  English is alright no doubt but vernacular always brings the message home.  In this track he sings about forgiveness.

Track 4 : Million Reasons

My mind went back in time.  It reminded me of the days when love was honest, pure, no games and you were not afraid to be vulnerable.  Remember that time you could sit down with your partner and count the many ways why they meant the world to you?  We are now living in times where you have to extremely guard your heart because you have no idea what the next person’s intentions are.  This is something a lot of people can relate to, when you get your hands on his album make sure this is one of the first tracks you listen to.

Track 5: Go

Screaming!!! The moment I listened to this my mind went straight to Zumba.  It has a Samba feel to it.  I have added it to my running playlist.  I already have a mental image of what the music video would look like.  Women in short dresses, men in tight pants and shirts unbuttoned down to reveal their chests, everyone sweating from all the dancing, smokey room by the beach and some men seated and enjoying the music while smoking some cigars!!  It will be a great setup to go with this track that was clearly made for dancing.

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Prayersoul

After listening to this album one three many times and obviously annoying the heck out of my neighbours I finally got a chance to read through his shout outs.  What pulled at my heart strings was his last shout out that he gave to his wife, Nadine.  You know how they say you always save the best for last…It is beautiful to watch couples celebrate and support each other especially on a creative journey that a lot of people do not understand.

Thanks to attending his live show I got to find out a few things I didn’t know about Prayersoul.

  • He writes his own songs.
  • His favourite social media space is Facebook.
  • He was born in Bulawayo.
  • He moved to Masvingo for High School and University education.
  • He plays a little bit of bass guitar and a bit of piano.
  • He has a BSc in Social Sciences.  When he was looking for a job he would occasionally perform and he started getting calls for his performances.  He never got a call for any of the CVs for his Degree.  He started getting paid for his performances and that became his job.
  • He facilitates for guitar lessons for age groups starting 4.5 years to as old as possible, watch his social media for details.
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Prayersoul & MaKupsy 🙂

Upcoming Events…

Look out for promo events featuring Prayersoul at Chez Zandi , Organiks and a couple of Prayersoul launch concerts and these are mainly to connect with his fans before he travels out of the country.

You can keep in touch on any of his social media pages:

  1. Facebook
  2. Instagram
  3. Twitter
  4. www.prayersoul.com
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my signed copy 🙂 USD5

This is my first album review and I can safely rate 8 out of 10 for While I Was Away.   You have to do yourself a favour and attend one of his events, his live performances are captivating.  You know I always recommend quality things and this album will be worth your money, trust me.  If you are looking for an album that will soothe your soul and take you to a happy place then you’re in luck!  Prayersoul is a talented man and I wish him all the beautiful things on his creative journey.  Keep making soulful music Mr Soul!

 

Prayersoul says the best advice he ever got when he was starting out on his journey was that you need to find out what makes you unique because everyone else is already doing the same thing that you are doing.  Find your Africanness! 

©MaKupsy 2017

The Single Independent Mother

I have some saving tips from a single mother who is in her 40’s.  I think everyone will benefit from this post and I took this pretty seriously because she clearly has more years experience on raising a child single-handedly.  Take out your pen and paper…

  1. Cut your hair, imagine the amount of money you are spending on hairdos that you could be saving for better use for you and your child.
  2. Live within your means.
  3. Do not compare yourself with people who are married, they have a double income you only have one, stay in your lane.
  4. Save some money each month, it doesn’t matter how little, trust me it will go a long way.
  5. Do not buy on credit, especially clothes, save to pay everything with cash.
  6. Take a lunchbox to work with healthy home made meals or sandwiches.
  7. Make friends with women in a similar situation who understand your struggles better.
  8. Do what works for you, do not try to please anyone.
  9. Set targets for yourself and make sure you reach them, it might take time but eventually you will get there.
  10. Learn how to sew, simple things like replacing a button and hemming your pants will go a long way for your pocket.

If you live by most of these rules you might actually get round to going for that holiday you have been dying for!

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Photo Credit : @summer_rose_ (Instagram)

©MaKupsy 2017

Children Need Outdoor Play Too!

I realised last weekend that the only activity I manage to do with Miss Kupsy when I go home for the weekend in Marondera is go and grab a bite.  We usually settle for pizza and icecream because that is the ONLY take out place in the whole town.  When I bring her to Harare that is a completely different case because the options of things to do are countless.

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Image from Google

However, today my main concern is the lack of outdoor play areas for children in my hometown.  When I was growing up there was a functional swimming pool, a video game centre, a movie house, a tennis court, a basketball court and a park which actually had swings, slides the works!  Ask me what has happened to these play areas?  Well, the swimming pool since stopped working years ago, the video game centre is not used for that anymore, I am still to find out what is going on there, the movie house was turned into a bar, the tennis court now has people setting up stalls to sell second hand clothes, the basketball court is being used as an area to line laundry and the park… oh well; just another dump in town with no swings at all and a lot of litter.

It annoys me that whoever is responsible for town planning does not take the children in the community into consideration.  Where in the world are they supposed to play?  I mean, they can’t possibly stay indoors all day long, or play on the streets or around their house till kingdom come.  They obviously get tired just like everyone else and need a break and need to socialise with children their age.  And if you ask me this should be something that can be done without having to fork out a lot of money if any at all.  Imagine if all they are going to be exposed to is eating unhealthy take out?  I can just picture a whole bunch of adults suffering for weight issues in the near future…

The following points are (based on Wardle, 1996-2003) describe the main reasons why outdoor play is critical for the healthy development of young children.  I took a few points from the article.

Physical Exercise Children need to develop large motor and small motor skills and cardiovascular endurance.

Enjoyment of the Outdoors Outdoor play is one of the things that characterize childhood. And as Lord Nuffield once said, the best preparation for adulthood is to have a full and enjoyable childhood.

Learning about the World Outdoor play enables young children to learn lots and lots and lots of things about the world. How does ice feel and sound? Can sticks stand up in sand? How do plants grow? How does mud feel?

Learning about Self and the Environment To learn about their own physical and emotional capabilities, children must push their limits. Health Everyone who works with young children in early childhood programs and schools knows how quickly bacteria and viruses spread in these environments. One way to reduce the spread of infection is through lots and lots of fresh air.

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Definitely NOT in Marondera

Then you wonder why I am thoroughly upset with Marondera Town Council?  Do you see all those benefits of outdoor fun for children? It seems those in the powers that be do not have children as a part of their programme because if they did surely there would be at least ONE play area where children can just have a grand time.

Miss Kupsy loves the outdoors and I feel bad that the only open space she has to play is at home.  I hope someone addresses this  issue and something is done about it.  When I think back to my own childhood, some of their fondest memories are of outdoor places and activities I got up to (I will never forget the first time I fell off a tree trying to climb to the top) I hope Miss Kupsy and all the other children in the community do not get deprived of that opportunity. All children have the right to basic childhood needs…jumping, running, climbing, swinging, racing, yelling, rolling, hiding, and making a big mess,it is what childhood is all about!

©MaKupsy 2017

Secrets To Body Weight Training

Paul Bako is a vibrant young man who always had a passion for fitness. He attained a Degree in Business Management at Solusi University and worked for NSSA.  He decided to pursue his passion full time. He is a self taught Yogi who still practices Yoga regularly but he focuses on Calisthenics. Calisthenics is a discipline of body weight exercise that builds strength, increases balance, physical ability and flexibility. Paul is also an avid reader and a writer. He believes that life is meant to be experienced and not just lived so you may find him doing crazy and even risky things. An ambivert by nature he exudes positive energy and enthusiasm but you may not see him out and about too often.

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What makes you tick?

Life itself makes me tick. Just the knowledge that there is so much to see, do, know, experience and cherish makes me get up every morning. I wake up so excited to live because I don’t know which day will be my last so I make the most of all of them.

You could have chosen any form of exercise to stay fit, why did you choose calisthenics?

Calisthenics as a word originated from two Greek words which in English are ‘Beautiful Strength’. I have always been into fitness but once I saw the ability, agility, strength, flexibility, coordination and graceful manner of moving calisthenics would grant me I was sold. I chose calisthenics because it resonated with my nature. I’m free spirited, creative and progressive. Calisthenics is the same and way more.

What are your thoughts on Rest Days?

Rest Days are just as important as workout days. Working out and resting are two sides of an amazing coin. There must always be balance. If you work out a lot, rest a lot. Muscle grows and conditions when at rest. To work out more than you rest leads to burning out due to the body producing cortisol which is a stress hormone but no need to get too technical. Just rest!

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What’s your favourite meal of the day and why?

I LOVE BREAKFAST!! Breakfast sets the tone for the whole day so it is my favourite. I also have time to cook in the morning so that gets me excited.

Do you eat carbs?

I eat carbs quite a bit. I prefer clean carbs like oats and vegetables. Oh yes, vegetables have carbs too. Occasionally I indulge my sweet tooth with a bran muffin or a chocolate croissant. I just stay away from heavy starch food like sadza.

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How do you grow muscle using body weight?

That takes a bit of time to answer but in a nutshell: few sets with lots of repetitions using compound exercises that engage a number of muscle groups at once. Eating carb based food then resting comes after. Increasing intensity of exercise as you grow bigger and finally, believing in yourself. Your mind is the real key to your fitness.

What do you love about Calisthenics?

I love how easy it is to keep your workouts interesting. You can regulate how hard or easy an exercise gets with ease. I also love how easy it is to see that you are getting stronger and progressing, not to mention the fact that calisthenics chisels the body to the point of making regular men Spartans.

How often do you work out?

I work out 3 times a week for a maximum of 45 minutes. However, I stretch every other day. Real stretching is its own workout as I have come to realize but I do it for about 15 minutes so it doesn’t exhaust me.

Say I wanted to start calisthenics today how long would I have to wait to start seeing results?

If you are really focused and paying attention to your form then 21 days is all it takes to start enjoying the perks of Calisthenics.

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What can people expect at the Fitness in the Park Event on Saturday?

They can expect to see me. LOL. They can expect the story of how I started doing Calisthenics, a breakdown of the big 6 moves that make up the back bone of calisthenics and examples of the big 6. They can also expect a showcase of the type of strength, agility and craziness calisthenics promises. Maybe some Yoga flow motion too!

Any life nuggets to share with those on their fitness journey?

I have a lot of those but the most important ones would be:

  • Remember the result you want but focus on the process. If you focus on the result it will seem unattainable.
  • Approach everything you do with positivity. If you make a mistake learn from it. If you are drained rest and pick it up tomorrow. Don’t think in terms of difficulty. See everything as a challenge you surmount because you can.
  • I’ll take it right out of Kendrick’s mouth and say ‘Be Humble.’ Pride limits growth and success. Ask for help when you need it.
  • Don’t spend time in front of a mirror searching for definition. Work out till everyone around you becomes a mirror that tells you how awesome you look.
  • Celebrate every little victory because life is too short to wait for the big ones.

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Love what you do and your love will be returned tenfold. Even if its fitness love it all the same and it will give you more than you could ever bargain for.

Thank you for the beautiful feature Paul.  I am looking forward to tomorrow’s event. If you have any questions for him feel free to drop them in the comments section.

Happy Friyay!

©MaKupsy 2017

UnPlugged : Pineapple Creative Studio

UnPlugged is a well organised event and those who have been would never miss it for the world, come rain or shine. Despite the rains the event went well and this was a reminder that good music brings people together. I had the pleasure of attending yet another Unplugged do (the joys of being a blogger) and this time I was specifically there to watch Pineapple Creative Studio perform.  The dance crew performed well and I had a chance to speak to them after the event.

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Pineapple

My name is Chengetayi Nosikhumbuzo Mnisi better known as Pineapple.  I am the founder of Pineapple Creative Studio. I love dancing. That is the place I feel most alive; I can never see myself without dance in the bigger picture of my life. I have always been a creative bug. I enjoy art, writing (I have a blog) and talking A LOT.  I am very inquisitive some call it nosy but I love learning new things.  I am where I am today because I work hard and I believe in myself.  I am all about love, positive vibes and success. My circle wins, you can not encounter me and stay the same.

You can not encounter me and stay the same.

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TKay

My name is TKay. I am a Creative Consultant, Marketing Consultant, Business Person, Choreographer and Dance Instructor. I have been a part of a number of dance crews including 2xl and Inmates. I was Co-founder of High Definition Dance Crew. I am currently part of Pineapple Creative Studio; a crew of creatives not only in the dance scene but from every artistic perspective.   I am a brand ambassador for a few brands including Ster Kinekor. I run my own small business and I am a part of two others. I am a fan of seeing people grow and I love progress!

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LeRoi

I am LeRoi.  I am a Dance Instructor, Choreographer, Dance Fitness Trainer and Graphic Designer.

  • I have choreographed and have worked with Jah Prayzah, ExQ, Ammara Brown, Andy Muridzo, Veekay(based in Switzerland) and Oliver Mtukudzi.
  • I choreographed and made appearances in the Jah Prayzah and government video for STEM, choreographed.
  • I was part of the Bhachura video with ExQ and Ammara Brown and I have done shows with them.

I am a Fine Artist who respects his art very much.  I do portraits and paintings for individuals and nurseries. I am a level 2 copy artist Graphic Designer. I have worked with corporates such as Econet, Telecel, Manimanzi Estates and Zimoco Motors. I have my own label named LADNart and it is branded mostly on t-shirts, caps and hoodies; it focuses more on the African Wildlife. I am part of a movement and Creative company called Pineapple Creative Studio, which is a crew of different creatives, from the dance, art, fashion and music industry.

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About Pineapple Creative Studio

Pineapple Creative Studio is something that gave me many restless days and sleepless nights.  It was my biggest fear and my biggest dream. I felt like there was no space for Creatives to be accepted for who and what they are in a society that does not fully appreciate or understand creatives and how we tick.  A place where there are no rules and people are not panel beat into writing in a certain way, dancing to a certain beat and thinking in a certain way.

Pineapple Creative Studio is a place where there is nothing but passion and love.  A place where we do not allow life to get in the way of our dreams.  In as much as we do dance for now, it is the tip of the iceberg.  I am working towards Pineapple Creative Studio becoming the place where talent and passion is nurtured in its wild state. Where artists, poets, writers, photographers can come together and make magic.

A place where children can also embrace their uniqueness and make a living out of it. I intend to merge it with life coaching and  team building and raise a generation of creative leaders. It scares me but I’m grateful for the people that have believed in the dream from its inception in October 2016 to date. I have gained a family and amazing friends.

Pineapple Creative Studio is my life. – Pineapple

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©MaKupsy 2017

 

This Is Why You Are Not Happy

I used to have a lot of friends but with time we outgrew each other because of different milestones we all went through which is perfectly okay.  Now I think I have probably have four really close friends who I know I can call on whatever time of day and just catch up, vent or talk about how we can grow in all life aspects.  I hardly mention names when I write up my posts because when someone reads my blog they always know when I am writing about them and the same applies today.  Let me tell you about a conversation I once had with a once was good friend of mine.  Let’s call him D.

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Image from Google

The one time we had gone out for coffee and we were catching up on life and all things random.  He asked me what I had planned for the weekend and frankly I had a whole list of things I wanted to do but I didn’t have the means.  I still remember what I told him.  I wanted to go for a long drive till I got to a place with a lake; park there and take in the sunset and calming surroundings.  After that I would probably take a dip because I love me some water and I always have a reason to swim.  That said, K said to me; “You realise you don’t need to wait on anyone to do this, you can do it on your own.”  I was like dude, are you mad?  How is that even possible you do know that I don’t have a car right?  He simply told me that he knew but that was all the more reason to start working towards buying my own car! Okay, that was a shocker but the shocker made me actually start looking at things differently.

You realise you don’t need to wait on anyone to do this, you can do it on your own.”  

I have a great example of how I made the first change.  I once joined a fitness group on Facebook that has been there for quite a while now.  I was excited to be part of a team that enjoyed fitness as much as I did but the downside was these guys only published posts for their regular members and so my runs and workouts were always pending.  I was gutted and told myself, self, you either have to suck it up and accept that this is how its done in this group or start your own group!  Of course I started my own group, are you mad, why subject myself to such misery?  It was the best decision that I ever made and it made me realise change can be just a click away!

We always have an excuse not to do something.  When you really look at it you are usually the one stopping yourself from achieving the majority of your goals.  Oh it’s too difficult, I don’t have what it takes, maybe if I had this, it’s because I went to this school, only people from certain backgrounds get to have that.  The excuses are plenty!  Listen; you only get to do this life thing once and you better make the most of it!  I used to be this person; always with a list of excuses but after the talk with D I grew up instantly.  If you don’t have a car then by all means take public transport to wherever you want to go, if you don’t have money to go to the gym then workout from home, if you are passionate about music but you are not part of a band then start your own band.  Stop waiting for a saviour and save yourself already.  Actually, you read this everyday on social media but you just won’t do anything about it but here I am trying to convince you.  Why am i even wasting my time?  As and when you are ready you will make that change.

I still don’t have a car by the way but I have set a target for myself and started working towards getting one.  My dream car is the Land Rover Discovery; she’s going to be my baby in this lifetime, one day is one day!  For now my first car will be a little fuel saver that takes me all over the country on a budget.  That way I will get to travel more and get to take a tonne of pictures, create memories and live my best life now.  I am still living my life like it’s golden by the way, pedestrian life and all but once I get my car it will be on level 47646727 so you guys should just watch this space!

Now let’s get talking, what is stopping you from living your best life now?  Do you want to die and not have lived as many happy moments as possible?  You know you can die today, right here and right now?  Would people say you were a bubbly soul who did everything in their power to spread happiness or you just lived each day unhappy and ready to stab yourself with a spoon out of sheer boredom?

 

©MaKupsy 2017