2018! What a year! As I look back, I am filled with thanks for an amazing year. Every year I think things will slow down enough for me to catch up with my life but I am learning to accept that my life will always move a little faster than I can imagine and so I just buckle up and try to keep up.
In January 2018, I opened Fruitful Orchard Montessori thinking I’d have just Solu and Metu for the term since I did not advertise. By the third week, we had one part time child and another child attending full time. That was the beginning of the scramble to keep up with life.
On February 1st, my family experienced a devastating tragedy. It was extremely hard but God came through and saw us through. Between dealing with the aftermath of the tragedy, teaching my class of 4 and mama-ing my 3, the month went by fast. I hosted pray n play event for @gracetoparent and it was wonderful
In March, I received news that I had been nominated to the board of directors of AMI. It was such a highlight of my year. It brought so much light and relief after the experience in February. I attempted doing life Insta-live videos but could not keep up. I hope to try again this year.
In April, I attended the AMI AGM in Amsterdam and my nomination to the board was approved. It was such an honor to be found worthy of such a position. I am still in awe.
I got to meet @themontessorinotebook and hung out with my dear friend @sagemontessorisf and saw @sarahmoudry who I had not seen in a while. My wonderful Montessori sisters from Tanzania honored me so beautifully during my confirmation.
In April, I also set up and opened our toddler community and welcomed 3 children including my daughter Biendu. We also added one child to the children’s house.
In May, lots of learning happened but it was otherwise relatively laid back.
In June, Biendu turned 1 and I turned 34! We celebrated. I felt really thankful and happy with where I was with my family and also my career. It was also a gift to celebrate with my parents and siblings. I walked around the sun 34 times!
In July we completed our first partial school year! All the families were happy and I was exhausted.
I hosted a how to talk so kids listen workshop, it was my first live workshop in abuja and it was very well received.
I traveled to the US and celebrated with Sveta @itsapracticallife who turned 40!
I was astounded by the generosity shown to me and our school by @itsapractifallife, @westsidemontessori and Suba @mirustoys.
I also got to see my bestie and celebrate 35 with her. This meant so much to me since distance has made me miss so many milestones. I got to spend time with my godson, another highlight!
In August, I attended the MTIPS summer institute in Chicago and was inspired as usual by @aspinall and @countryside.dayschool. I attended a sandfordjones workshop and observed Michelle Aspinall’s classroom! @naturewalklearning was kind enough to host and chauffeur me and also showed me around her lovely school. I got to see @house of montessori and meet other great montessorians! I was sad to miss the AMI ESF assembly hosted by the @indabainstitute.
I gave many school tours and worked hard to get the school ready for the new school year.
I also did a small video for @ibelieveinmontessori and @welcometomommyhood’s hands on activities and got to use a lot of their wonderful resources in my classroom.
I also decided to take the leap and start making some montessori inspired furniture and toys for sale in Nigeria. I made my first SOMEBI (Montessori friendly furniture and toys) sale in August.
August was a busy month!
In September, we welcomed 8 new toddlers and 4 children in the CH @fruitfulorchardmontessori. It was ALOT of work settling them in.
In October, I went to Lagos with my staff to attend the AMI certificate course. I got to finally meet @jhilson! Another highlight of my year!
I lost a toenail while running after a child! It was the most stressful month of the year! I was one of the guests on Jeanne-Marie (@voilamontessori)’s amazing be the best parent you can be conference.
In November, we hosted Montessori friend Tumini and her two children. My brother and his family visited and and his children got to attend my school for two weeks! It was great to so lovely and a dream come true. We also welcomed our first parent and teacher observers.
I organized the children’s section at the Tamerri festival at the Tamerri festival for the third time.
I also got accepted into the AMI 6-12 training starting next year in South Africa!!!
In December, I reorganized and changed the layout of my classroom and worked with my staff to finally unpack and organize the office. My favorite sister-in-law got married to an awesome guy, I then travelled to the village for a week and I got some rest! We drove back on the 31st and now it’s 2019!
In all of this, my marriage thrived, my children grew! Biendu started to walk, run, jump, climb, talk (A lot!) Metu turned 3, was a threenager and then calmed down. He continued to be our little charmer who keeps us smiling with his antics, he absorbed so much in school and amazed us with what he knew. Solu started to read and read everything in sight. Uzo made significant business moves and Alice was an amazing helper (most of the time!) we got to spend a lot of time with my parents and some of my siblings and I was so thankful for the bonds that grew between my children and all of their grandparents.
I am so grateful to God for his grace and numerous blessings. He came through in ways we did not imagine.
Also to my supportive family. My enduring husband who is so patient with all the craziness and is supportive of all I do. My very adaptable children who thrive even when borderline neglected and who do always forgive me. My mama who is always always there to help and support, my siblings, staff, school family and friends.
I am excited to see what 2019 brings. Since I discovered this path, every year has been filled with growth, adventure, work and joy! I am excited to continue to support families and children around the world and doing this work that I love so very much.
Happy New Year and Thank you for following me on this journey. Please let me know how I can support you this year.