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"This Is How I Do Festive..."

+ 3 Women share their Holiday plans and how they make it their own.

I asked 3 ImmiGreat Moms how they plan to keep it authentic even in a Pandemic year. Here's what they shared:

Berry Dakara, Podcaster & Influencer


Anita's my given name.

I moved to the US after I graduated secondary school. It's been 23+ years and I finally became a US citizen earlier this year.

What African food might make an appearance on your festive menu

Jollof rice's likely although I'm hoping for Coconut Jollof rice. Last year I made Suya chicken skewers but this year I'm working on Christmas Eve so I'm not sure I'll have the time to do it. Maybe I can convince my mum to make Suya turkey legs!

Additions to your holiday routines this year

This year my almost-ex husband is in the country so we're working on figuring out how best to process the holiday for our daughter (she's 3). It's a new situation so hopefully we work out something with the best outcome for her.

Anything that used to be a holiday routine but isn't this year

Not really. Every year, my parents, siblings and I hang out at my sister's house to open presents and have breakfast. In the evenings we have dinner with extended family. We have to figure out how we're navigating the extended family this year because of the pandemic.

Fake tree or real tree

Fake please. Who has energy for a real tree? Plus, fake trees last years, please and thanks.

Your most memorable Christmas

My most memorable Christmas was when I surprised my family with my pregnancy announcement. I had been trying to conceive for almost 2 years and everyone was praying along with me. I found out I was pregnant about a month before Christmas and decided I'd surprise my family with the news. Check out Pregnancy Reveals! - YouTube

Warning: You will need tissues!

Berry hosts The Mommy Oyoyo Podcast and interviews guests on a wide range of topics African women have been conditioned to stay quiet about. Men too.


Igxtelle Mbah Acha Esq. Mom Community Lead


My name Igxtelle is deduced from Christina. It actually means 'Warrior'.

I moved to the US without my family and with the odds stacked against me. I refused to listen to prior experience/advice and went on to take the bar exam in New York. I had never studied at a US law school, not even a New York law school but I studied on my own and passed the exam on my first try. That was the beginning of me stepping out into a different pathway than most of the immigrants in my circle.

African food at your Christmas table

All the African food my family loves will make appearances on the menu. Foufou and Eru is our main. Roasted fish too.

Festive Style in a Pandemic Year

Most likely dressing up. 2020 has been quite a year and making it this far deserves a gratitude celebration.

What makes a Christmas memorable

My best Christmas memories have always included my family. It is always about being with family, surrounded in love and good food.

Igxtelle heads a vibrant group of Immigrant Moms on Facebook. The Immigrant Mom is a non-profit organization based in the United States with a vision to provide support, tools and resources to all immigrant mothers raising children in the United States.


Mimi Bangura-Rahman, Podcaster & Author

Name (secret ones, too)

No secret names, I promise. It's always been Mimi or Aminata.

First Impression when you relocated

I moved to the States when I was 14. I was a teenager and I thought everything was cool.

What African food might make an appearance on your festive menu

Probably Fufu

Festive Style this year

Definitely dressing up this year.

Most expensive gift received

A Macbook from my husband.

Mimi's book On The Other Side is a book about overcoming struggles, finding love, faith and forgiveness. Her podcast Let Me Tell You What (just launched its 3rd season) explores various topics from a faith perspective.

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