I was born and raised in the U.S., but I became fascinated by travel and culture at a young age. I started living abroad in 2000, when I moved to Paris, France. After that, I never looked back! I started out my career in the private sector, working for a U.S. financial institution. After five years I wanted a change, and I went to graduate school to study international relations. I launched my life change when I applied for a job with Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF). I met Jesse, my future husband, during my first posting with MSF in Uzbekistan, and we spent the next 5 years working together in Uganda, DR Congo, South Sudan, and Haiti.
In 2010, Jesse and I got married, and decided we were ready to lay down some roots. We didn’t manage. But about a year-and-a-half and one baby later, we finally did! I’m now a full-time mom, and happily raising two beautiful daughters, Claire and Heidi.
I started blogging a couple of years after we moved to Nairobi. As I settled in to my adopted home, I realized that I had cultivated a lot of insider information about raising a family in Nairobi. A good friend often told me, “You should start a blog!” I finally listened to her, and Mama Mgeni was born. “Mgeni” is a word in Kiswahili meaning foreigner, guest, visitor or stranger. I might still be mgeni, but Kenya has very much become my home!
(Photo courtesy of Natasha Sweeney. Thanks, Natasha, for the lovely family photo!)