ABIOLA OLA- THE BARBECUE MAN.

Meet a pharmacist whose hobby is fast becoming a pleasurable business for him. Relax, stay sparkling, and enjoy as you read.
My name is Abiola. I have a degree in Pharmaceutics- Bsc (Hons) from Dublin Institute of Technology, and M.sc in Healthcare Informatics from University College, Dublin.
I have worked in the pharmaceutical industry for twelve years in various positions. I worked at Merck pharmaceuticals for ten years and presently, I work in a world leading pharmaceutical plant as a QA chemist in Dublin. I totally love my job, but when I am not working, I enjoy entertaining family and friends.
One day, I bought a Weber barbecue machine which was pretty expensive, and my wife (Dolapo Sanusi-Ola) asked me to justify the reason for spending so much on it and to let her know how I intended to make the money back as she along with my pastor (Pastor Tunde Adebayo-Oke), and a few friends had been asking me to turn my passion for grilling into a business for a while. So, I decided to go into the business and also to make back my money for the Weber machine.πŸ˜„ The rest, as they say, is history.
I love hosting people, and I love to grill and experiment with different types of food. So it was a good mix for me- hosting and making barbecues for my guests. At the time I decided to take it to the next level as a business, there were very few restaurants or places you could go to for good barbecue meals.
I believe the barbecue business can be a good side or full-time business for anyone who would like to go into it, but the person must have a passion for it. Especially because the food preparation time can be time-consuming.
Starting a barbecue business is pretty easy but can be expensive too. I will say this; every business can be lucrative once you find your niche and target market, but in the food business, things such as referrals, food quality, food presentation goes a long way. 
The first step to take if you want to go into food business is have training in Food and Safety, Food catering, HACCP, Fire Safety and Fire Management, Health and Safety, Manual Handling; and most importantly, have your shop/premises registered with your Local Environment Health Officer.
You will also need to get a Food/ Product/ Public Liability Insurance for the business, and then register the business with Revenue/HRM.
 I am a member of the Irish Barbecue Association and the World Barbecue Network.
I worked very hard to build my name for myself. I have worked at literally every major food festival in Ireland and Northern Ireland. I will soon be grilling at Europes biggest barbecue festival in Dublin called “The Big Grill Festival”
Some of the festivals I have worked at – Africa Day, Dublin 2015-2018, Longford Food Festival, International Food Festival, Dublin. Dublin Food Market at Merrion square, Rave Market Food festival, Camden Street, Dublin. Taste of Wicklow, Wicklow. Red Cup Summer Barbecue, Dublin and Belfast. I have done Private barbecue events in Ireland, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom and the United States, plus many more public events.
For people who look down on such a profession,  I would like them to know that grilling is an art and a skill. Any profession that anyone is passionate about should be celebrated.
Follow Abiola on Instagram for more information on bookings and events around Ireland: http://instagram.com/abidolbbq

NEW WEEK – DON’T GIVE UP.

At the beginning of this month of July, we had our goals and the targets we wanted to pursue in this month. Some of us may have hit our target, while some are almost rounding up. Maybe you haven’t been able to achieve that yet. 
It does not matter what stage you are at today. Just know this- DO NOT GIVE UP, KEEP PUSHING.
I am pushing hard to make my dreams become a reality. It has not been an easy month, but in the end, I know I will be proud of myself when all falls into place. 
Stick with me on the journey to success and let’s keep pressing on. 
Begin today with a positive mindset, spread your wings, be happy and don’t forget to smile.πŸ˜ƒ 
Be more determined and have more fire inside of you. Stay Sparkling⭐

AFTER THE JOLLOF WARS OF 2017.

Last year there was a crazy battle in which some African countries cooked the best jollof rice. 
I remember a friend and I had Ghanian jollof rice and saying, okay this is not jollof rice.πŸ˜†πŸ˜†
The thing is, we have all grown up with different flavours and our taste buds have just gotten so used to what it’s been having for decades.
The Senegalese also have their own version and I must say, Africans sure know how to cook.
In Australia last year, at the Auburn Town Hall, Auburn, NSW; there was a jollof war competition in which my very own homegirl, Poroye, participated. if you know her very well, you’d know when it comes to cooking, she should be called a chef. Yes, I said so.πŸ˜„ 
So, Nigerian jollof won the competition held in Australia and took the trophy home.

The Nigerian cooks at the Jollof wars: TOPE ADEBOYEJO and POROYE BENSON ADEWUSI

What war will be on this Summer? Knowing that we already won the best jersey for the 2018 World Cup, might just cover up for 2018.😜
Stay Sparkling and do have an amazing weekend.

SHERIFAT’S SUCCESS STORY.

Meet a woman who had a dream of growing in her professional career but ended up as a businesswoman and life coach.
My name is Sherifat and I am a wife and mother who lives in Lagos State, Nigeria.
I studied Business Administration and had a dream of working either in the Telecoms sector or the Oil and Gas sector after school. Luckily I got a job in telecoms. I was elated that my dream had become a reality. But, alas, I had not thought about when I start having children.
It was a huge struggle juggling the home front with work, but I pushed as I loved my job and enjoyed what I did; even though me not been able to spend enough time with the kids and watch them grow was tearing at my heart.
a few years later, I was invited to a seminar being held by an international Sweedish company. At this time I was already a manager but was looking for a Plan B; a part-time means of earning an income.
As I listened to the speaker, I asked myself, what exactly I was doing there. I was definitely not ready to go into network marketing. Then the speaker asked; Who would like to look good like him. At this point, I was ready to head out of the place, but just then he asked another question. Who would like to make money and travel in and out of Nigeria two or three times a year? My ears popped up at this point and I became alert. In the end, I became a member. I now had my Plan B; a means of earning extra income on the side. 
A month after I started my side business, I lost my job. I was deflated but also so glad I had agreed to join in the network marketing business. Soon, I had turned it into a full-time business. I was dealing with cosmetic products. 
As I began to sell these products, I realised I was having a reaction and could not tell what I was reacting to. It affected my face and body. This got me in a panic. How do I sell cosmetic products with this face? There was a day I was trying to sell my products and one of the people I was speaking to said to me to go sort out my face first before coming to market my product. My husband also jokingly asked me who I had offended.πŸ˜„πŸ˜„
At this point, I decided to actually use the products seriously. Followed all instructions and dedicated time to it. After the first two weeks, I was being asked what I was using. Another two weeks and my entire face and body were fully cleared.
People started recommending people to me and I started to explain about the product and before long, was training others on the product and getting people to join in just as I did.
Today, I am not in a career I had dreamt about, but I am glad I decided to go into business, and I am loving every minute of it. Yes, there are times that it gets stressful, but I enjoy what I do so it works for me.
Do not give up when your dreams don’t become your reality. Look for something to do to earn an income. There is always something to do.
Now, I am not just a businesswoman, but also an entrepreneur and a  life-changing coach.
You can contact Sherifat for more information on +2348033173554
Meet Sherifat Aliu. Doesn’t she just SPARKLE?

JAMES OYALE OKOH . RE- HARD-WORK = HARVEST

A  few people have reached out and asked me to write up on farming. Since I have no story on farming at the moment, I have reposted a story from August last year on farming.
I do hope you enjoy as you read and please don’t forget to SHARE, SHARE, SHARE…
Stay Sparkling and enjoy a great weekend.
Born into a family of five children in Otukpo, Benue State in Nigeria; James at the age of seven moved to Lagos to live with his aunt who was married to an Airforce officer.
This is his story:
Growing up was tough and rough. I struggled until I was admitted into the University of Agriculture,  Markudi, Nigeria to study Electrical Electronics Engineering.
I had always wanted to study Information Technology growing up, so after school, I had a formal training in computer repairs,  networking and other Information technology related courses and training.
I got employed in an IT (Information Technology) firm and worked with the firm for two years before starting my own private IT firm.
During my study at the University Of Agriculture, I saw so many shortcomings in our Nigerian system in regards to agriculture. From the constant increase in the price of food to the increase in population growth in Nigeria and Africa as a whole, I was certain that in the near future,  we might not be able to produce enough food to meet the demand of the population.
My childhood idea of owning a farm came alive and with what I had learned in the agricultural sector I decided to start my own farm called LIFEWAY FARMS.
Our major goal is to provide quality and affordable food to every home in Nigeria and Africa at large and to reduce the poverty level in our Nation using modern agricultural practices.
Lifeway Farms started in early 2014 by buying cassava farms that have been cultivated already,  wait for it to get mature,  harvest and convert them to garri (cassava flakes).
The outcome was very encouraging so, the next farming season, we got about ten hectares of land on a long lease and decided to cultivate cassava,  maize and soya beans.  We wanted high yield so we had to settle for the improved variety of these crops.
We encountered challenges that year and we lost almost everything we invested in the farm; but we had agreed earlier when we started that we would not stop, no matter the challenges we faced.
I also wanted to start a starch processing plant but after meeting so many obstacles in terms of finances to start up, I decided to start up with what I believed we could handle.
We set up a modern garri processing plant that can produce two tonnes in eight hours. It is also automated (automatic fryer),
With that on ground,  we needed farms and a cluster of farmers that could produce and sell cassava worth over eighty million naira (N80,000,000)(Β£170,213)  every year to enable us to run the plant.
We have therefore created a ready market for the local farmers, and those into animal husbandry now have a stable place of getting the supply of feed for their animals.
Our major challenge at the moment is getting our products to the market, especially during raining seasons. The roads get so bad and so many trucks either refuse to move or charge double the regular amount.
We also started a plantain plantation with two hundred thousand naira (N200,000)(Β£425.5) which today, is worth over two million naira (N2,000,000)(Β£4,255)
Though it’s been really challenging, it has also been rewarding.  The beauty of farming is that you can start with as little as ten thousand naira (N10,000)(Β£21.28). All you need is alot of patience and loads of dedication.
Farming gives you enough time to do other things and still have a life.
In my case, I still run a firm that sells and installs solar panels and inverters. I still have time for my family (my beautiful wife and two kids).
Our next phase is to go into full processing and packaging of farm produce.
Benue State is so blessed that the land produces virtually all farm crops. I love my State and I am proudly Nigerian.
My name is James Oyale Okoh, and I am sparkling through my dreams turned reality.
PLEASE NOTE: EXCHANGE RATE AS AT 03/08/17 — N470 – Β£1