Friday, 31 October 2008

I am so nervous!

I am so nervous - my tummy is in a knot. I can not think straight. I had a call late yesterday afternoon that one of the two Paediatric Neurologists where we are on a waiting list have an opening this afternoon. It is not the one I prefer, but heck, this versus waiting until January? No choice, we are going! So please, please may I call on all your prayers today that we receive an "all clear, normal kid" diagnosis and not what we fear. (If you want to know what I am talking about - check here).

5 Things Friday...

So Spring is officially over today in South Africa, and we are moving fast towards Summer. So for 5 Things Friday, 5 Things about Spring in our little corner of the world:

1. Spring is officially September and October, but the actual temperatures very quickly goes from cold to hot in a few days. We always have a cold spell somewhere in September just when you start packing the winter clothes away and when all the Matrics (grade 12 - high school graduates) have their matric dance function (something like senior prom I would guess).

2. I always get a cold or sinus infection - I think prompted by all the pollen of which the Jacarandas I showed last Friday are the main culprits.

3. Off course, like the rest of the world, it is flowers and blossoms every where. What I love most is my back courtyard and the Irises that creates a spectacle every year. (these are 2007 photos)

4. It is officially the start of our rainy season - our first showers should be very close after the 10th of October - as happened this year. Our rain comes in the form of heavy thundershowers in the late afternoon or nighttime hours every few days.

5. We get the very anticipated "shoes off" letter from the pre-school. South Africans love to walk barefoot - it is a national "condition" spanning across most cultures. In Winter we get a letter that from some date it is officially shoes on time - the kids have to wear shoes to school - in Spring we get another letter informing us from when kids are allowed to come barefoot and it is school policy to encourage that for sensory development.

As I have probably mentioned on every blog I read, we have not Halloween here in SA - but to you and yours, Happy Halloween and enjoy! I am green with envy - such a great chance to dress up the kids. At least we have the nice weather!

Thursday, 30 October 2008

What's happening?

Thanks for every body's lovely comments about my darling daughter - she is truly one of those kids who "pulls" people - in real life and on photos. I have had several kiddie talents scouts, tv agents, model scouts etc. approaching me in shops but we have made the decision not to move her into modeling etc. If she gets to 12 or so and want to do it, she can, but we will not suggest it. I do not criticize parents that go that route, but it truly does not fit what our family is about. We love nature, the outdoors, animals etc. And we want to translate those type of values to our children.

So you may wonder, what is happening around the Cat's household? Well, busy busy as per usual. My workdays are at present very hectic - I have a building site being completed mid November and we are busy with inspections to try and get everything completed and quality checked before then. This means 4 to 5 days a week, most of the mornings on site. And do not forget that our temperatures are reaching anything between82 and 96 degrees at present. I am exhausted most of the days and just fall asleep on the couch in the evenings. I am not being a good wife at present - the poor hubby! Off course the rest of my work is also waiting, resulting in me having worked Monday night and last night.

I did not work on Tuesday night though as it was Survivor finals in South Africa (so you can figure out that we see it a couple of weeks after you guys). I can not get over Dreamz - what an asshole! And to think he tries to pass off his greed as being a clever tactic - I do not believe that. He was not thinking tactic when the car was offered to him -he was only thinking car! And later he was only greedy - and to think he kept playing the sympathy vote in the finals. Glad everybody saw through that. I am glad that Earl won though - a nice chap - but my favorite for the season - Yau -man. What a guy! What a wise and decent man. All the more proved by his comments and questions to the finalists. By the way did you know that the very first time any tribe in Survivor in any series of any country made fire before they got lint was in the second series of Survivor South Africa? (Richard, I think, in the very first or second series US knew how to make it, but did not do it). This was done by an ex army specialist and a very enticing fellow - reminds you of Rupert if you remember him from the US series. And by now you know - I am a huge Survivor fan.

That brings me to TV in general. I am not a big TV person, but I do follow a couple of series, when I get the chance. At the moment we are having a bumper CSI season - we have Miami (series VI) on Tuesdays, Vegas(VII) on Wednesdays and NY (IV) on Thursdays. Not sure how far behind we are - maybe you can tell me? I also love Army wives (series II) but usually miss the first half as it is dinner and bedtime for The Little Miss. I did watch Brothers and sisters (not on at present) and Grey's Anatomy(also not on at present). And then my stock of reality is Survivor and Amazing race - we are always just a couple of weeks behind. And that is the whole total of what I watch. Some nights we do not even switch on the TV and I love it. We play cards, backgammon, chat and relax together. This bumper time of CSI better come to an end soon !

The big, no huge issue at the moment is that our nanny have to move out of her current lodgings today! She has a home that she goes to over weekends, but really needs just a room near to us in order to keep her night school going. For the time being, she will sleep in the room with The Little Miss on weeknights - this is going to be tough on all of us. Please pray for a solution! We are searching high and low.

On the kiddie front - Little man L is really doing well with the crawling and is just now starting to prefer crawling to army crawling. Little man C is standing on his own (and clapping hands for himself - sop adorable) and walking while pushing a kiddies plastic chair. Yes, they do not have walker yet! Why you ask? Because Grandfather wanted to make some wooden push wagons for them(for their birthday) and asked us not to buy. This is what the Physio therapist recommended and not the plastic walkers. And yes, they have not arrived yet! I am sooo frustrated. I have nicely told him that little man C is more than ready for it, but well! And I can not say anything to the hubby - it will cause a major temper eruption. See, this non delivery of his dad is by now legendary. Do not get me wrong - he makes us the most stunning furniture(for free), but both times the cots for instance were late, I got my promised TV cabinet about a year and a half late and am still waiting for my dining room furniture (about 4 years now). But I will keep waiting as I know it will be worth it, but sometimes you just can not wait. And I feel this is one of those times.

I also bought The Little Miss the most stunning princess dress yesterday from a boutique's closing down sale - still cost half a fortune, but she is going to absolutely love it. A real handmade princess dress with beading, flowers, tulle skirts, layers of skirts and pink! I am keeping it for a surprise to wear for her birthday party - yes, we are having a princess party! And I have to plan it now as her birthday party is only days after our school year start, so invites have to go out this year. ( Our schools close in the beginning of December for our long summer holiday and start somewhere in January for the school year). Got to get going on those invites (and maybe a bit of work).

Wednesday, 29 October 2008

Way back WHEN-sday

Timeline: April 2007
Occasion: The Little Miss' first school photos.
I just love the "naughty " expression on the face.

Head over to Twinfatuation to see who else is playing along.

Tuesday, 28 October 2008

Two for Tuesday

In South Africa kids are not in general invited to weddings. Weddings are expensive, so by cutting out the kiddos one can save quite a bit. It is also fashion to have elegant nighttime weddings or garden weddings which does not really suit children.

So, last year in September, The Little Miss was invited to her first wedding - friends of ours were having a bush style wedding and invited all the children. She and dad attended as it was the day after The Boys and I came home from hospital after their birth. She was so impressed with the bride, dress and all and is still up to today playing wedding all the time. We bought her a special little dress with a tulle petticoat and she loved it! Below is she and her friend Bastian - everybody joked that they looked like a real little couple. He was born exactly 2 weeks after her.

Head over to Deanna to see who else is playing along.

Monday, 27 October 2008

Jingle bells!

Can you freaking believe it - they are putting up Christmas decorations in the shopping malls? Is it not another whole 2 months to Christmas? Off course we do not have Halloween and Thanksgiving to fill the gaps until Christmas, but I think this is plain crazy. Any Christmas decorations up in your part of the world?

Well, that's just my bit of venting as I am so completely overloaded at work that I can not think straight and can not think about Christmas yet. At all. And I am proud to say that I have made it through the weekend alone with the kiddos - gran helped a bit, but for the rest it was fine. Apart from the fact that we didn't prepare The Little Miss that dad would be gone for the weekend and he came home so late on Thursday night that she didn't see him - so by yesterday morning she had it! If you take into account that the last time she saw him was on Wednesday night it is completely fare of her to be upset - but not so fare on mom. I had a hugely upset and very difficult little girl and off course The Boys who have their own needs - amongst them to grab whatever the other one is playing with for yourself. So the poor pups only got their breakfast at 9:30 and mom then packed everybody for an excursion - where I at last had breakfast when the kids had lunch at about 12:30. Oh well, at least we all had a little nap the afternoon. On return, dad was completely ignored by The Little Miss and he had to work very hard to get her to sit with him etc. We will certainly prepare her a bit better next time. He, by the way, had a great time - they saw Rhino and all the usual suspects (giraffes, koedoe, impala, zebra, eland etc.) close by while hiking and had lions very near at night. No photos though, sorry to say, when you are the guide it is your work to ensure good photos for your clients, not for you. How I am yearning for a bit of open air, veld and peace and quiet.

Friday, 24 October 2008

Phriday Photo Phinish Phiesta

The street that I drive on my way home, 4 weeks ago.

The same street, Monday afternoon.

For about two months every year our city is transformed into the "Jacaranda city" of the world. Everything is purple! Most streets in the older part of the city is lined with Jacarandas and from viewpoints the whole city looks purple.
Go check out at Candid Carrie who else is playing along.

Wednesday, 22 October 2008

Way back WHEN-sday

Date: 25 October 2008.
Occasion: The Little Miss' first school concert. She was a Zebra (as she was in the Zebra class last year).

I am placing this today because it is almost exactly a year ago. We took the boys (1 month old) along to "see" the concert. We were swamped by the teachers and other parents wanting to take a look.This year there will be no concert (I am sad to hear) but we will have carols by candle light at the school.

Join Cheryl at Twinfatuation to see who else is playing along.

Tuesday, 21 October 2008

Any suggestions?

So the fighting has started in full force! Little man C is so much stronger than little man L and literally crawls right over him, sit on him and grabs toys out of his hands. To retaliate Little man L has started to bite, just to get the "favor" returned on Saturday and ending up with a huge bite mark on his cheek. Any ideas how to handle this situation? What did you do - or are you planning to do?

Two for Tuesday

My Two for Tuesday is the Ever so charming and delightful dad of the home and The Little Miss way back in April 2005 when she was about 3 months old. He just loves having babies sleep on his chest and is still doing it from time to time with The Boys. Even the puppies grew up that way! Head over to Deanna to see who else is playing along.

Monday, 20 October 2008

Wow, bloody madhouse here!

Gosh guys, things are tough at present. I have a building site with 54 houses completing in the next month which I need to inspect in detail. This means spending at least 4 mornings a week on site. Off course, this is not my only project - I have heaps more to take care off. Add to this mix that my partner is on holiday this week. Chaos!

On the home front the weekend has been tough. Or, rephrase, yesterday was a nightmare. Saturday was good, Friday night was great. We had a lovely get together with friends on Friday night, following our first spring thunderstorm. Wonderful! We have been waiting for ages for rain and this was a huge relief. Off course, it took ages to get the babies to sleep and we arrived about 2 hours late, but it was still fun. I had the chance to get to the hairdresser on Saturday and she also trimmed The Little Miss' hair. We had our great buddies Stefaan, Ilse and kids over on Saturday night and the girls only went to sleep after 10 that night. Off course The Little Miss woke up at 5:30 yesterday morning in a foul mood, to say the least. The Boys were cranky (they were inoculated of Thursday with Prevenar - it always hits them 3 to 4 days later). Between that and taking my mom for lunch (she was super exhausting) I feel like I have just wasted a day. At least the hubby escaped for 3 hours to go to the rifle range.

I do have some good news though - Little man L picked up a whole 130 grams in 14 days ( C picked up 90) so we hope he is starting to catch up on weight. And his crawling is progressing so well!

I pictures, a brief catch-up on the last couple of days:

We had a surprise Boss' day breakfast given to us by the staff on Thursday morning:

Little Vutivi came to meet the office on Friday afternoon (you remember last week's Stork party?) My secretary Adele and me holding him in the pictures below. He is the sweetest little boy with the longest fingers. A jazz pianist I think!

The boys are starting to use the baby swing on our porch - Little man L loves it, Little man C is not so sure about this!

The Little Miss and Grammy yesterday at the Spur Stake ranch. I am really not fond of the place, but it remains a good choice with kids.

Well, I am off to a terrible dentist appointment - please keep me in your thoughts, I'll tell more about that later.

Wednesday, 15 October 2008

Way back WHEN-sday

OK, so this is not really Way back, just back to June to match the lovely picture I published yesterday. Little man L, The Little Miss and Little man C - I love the expressions on all 3's faces.

And my beautiful little princess.
Head over to Twinfatuation for Way back Wednesday and see some other gorgeous pictures. Love Cheryl's by the way!

Happy Birthday Jen!

Happy Birthday Jen!

Jen is my bloggy buddy from "Buried with children" and her charming and delightful, and not to mention very clever hubby Jeff, has organised this surprise for her. And I really hope we have the time zone thing correct so that I don't blow the surprise.

Jen, may you and your family be blessed beyond words and may today and this year be the best ever. Love and light all the way from Africa.

Tuesday, 14 October 2008

Two for Tuesday

Join Deanna to play along on Two for Tuesday. Just look at my two big boys! This was taken in June at the very unique first birthday party we went to. If you are looking for a great idea - have a look there.

What the????

Look what I found in today's paper. Can you believe it? They think twins are bad luck! (Remember to click on the pic to enlarge it an be able to read the article.)

When I was pregnant with The Boys I received a huge gift for the twins from a Chinese client. Apparently twins are good luck in China and a big gift is totally appropriate. Do you know of any other cultural believes regarding twins?

Edited to add: My hubby tells me that in the San (bushman) culture in the Kalahari desert the weaker one of twins was left to die in the dunes as the moms did not have enough milk to support two babies.

Monday, 13 October 2008

A quiet weekend

Thanks for all the kind comments and all the bloggy love - love you girls a lot too!

We had a quiet weekend - nothing out of the usual. Watched an episode from "The long way down" on Friday night over pasta, The little Miss had her swimming lesson and I had my riding lesson on Saturday, watched our local team win on Saturday night and had a braai, church on Sunday and family over for a Weber meal on Sunday, concluding with a walk with the pups and kids.

How to find faeries in your garden...

You dress as one of course and hope that they do not notice you in disguise.

How do you keep two one year olds busy for half an hour?

With clothes pegs and some plastic containers off course! Gave me time to tidy the kitchen on Saturday morning.

Friday, 10 October 2008

Friday Foto Finish Fiesta

From my mom's garden - August 2008. Kept for nearly 2 months!

Go over to Candid Carrie and see sho else is playing along.

5 Things Friday...

Ok, so here I'll be spilling the beans about my little teaser yesterday. For today, 5 great things (and the sometimes not so great consequences) that happened this week:

1. Little man L took his first two tiny crawls at the Physio therapist on Tuesday! YES!!!!! I feel like our prayers are answered! God is great! The good news is that she does not need to see him again unless he is not fully crawling in a month's time. She is very very impressed with his progress. His next evaluation will be at 3 years. She also does not believe that here is something neurologically wrong with him. But she has advised us to still go to the Neurologist as the Paediatrician will then feel more comfortable. I value her opinion tremendously as she works with his body for half an hour at a time on a regular basis and am very relieved. She stresses that it is important to remember that he had a tummy bug when we were at the Paediatrician and that it could have influenced her opinion.

2. The Little Miss passed her very first dentist appointment with flying colours and she was not traumatised at all. Our dentist did a great job but I also prepared her beforehand. I am much relieved as I have huge dental issues which started at a very young age. More about that on another day.The crappy thing is that I caught her fingers in the door as we were leaving the office. Holy crap! Major meltdown! I am sure it was very very sore. The dental assistant quickly came with ice and we managed to stop the blood. It looked worse than it actually is and it seems as if there is no damage to the nails. I then bought a ballerina mouse that I gave her that night that the toothmouse (we don't have a toothfaerie here - we have a mouse) sent to her because she looks so well after her teeth - the dentist apparently emailed him! And that seemed to help a lot. Clever mommy me !

3. Little man C was awake the whole of Monday night - I suspected ear ache which the Paediatrician confirmed. The great news is that he immediately started sleeping through again - last time it took us more than a week to get him back into routine.

4. The ever so charming and delightful H have been selected by one of the trail guides to be second guide on a wilderness hiking trail in the Pilansberg National Park. This is great great news and one of his passions. He hasn't done one in 2 years due to the pregnancy and work. I am so happy for him! They see amazing things on these trails, sleep in the open in big 5 country etc. The downside, off course, is that I will be flying solo for a weekend. Ugh!

5, And we had a lovely stork tea for a work colleague today. His wife is expecting (38 weeks today) and we all put money in an envelope as they have already had two stork teas and a lot of clothes etc. They still need to buy a pram, so this should help a lot.

My kids gave this bear to his little boy and he had to swaddle the bear and hold him for the workday. Here he is at his work station practicing being daddy.

Most of the office with the dad. My partner had an emergency call out to a site, so missed it. In front with the dad is our now retired partner - remember I wrote about his second Bar Mitzvah. He retired 2 years ago at 81 but still comes to the office almost every day. The bad news is, we were just in time! He has just left the office - she will have a C section at 6 tonight - her placenta is starting to give. This is bad news because we have a major deadline Wednesday and it is his project! And in South Africa we have 3 days paternity leave upon the birth of your child - so we will have to do the job without him! But yes, you can not plan exactly when baby will come, can you?

And you may wonder if we have a secret society wearing light blue(3 of us today!). Our local rugby team , the Blue Bulls are playing in the Curry cup semi final tomorrow. Major sports event. I am wearing the team jersey but half of Pretoria is dressed in light blue today.

Thursday, 9 October 2008

Playing Tag with memory loss

So Debi tagged me for this one - and true to my brand spanking new resolution, all posts have to wait until this is done - I have such great news that I have been keeping secret since Tuesday!

In any event, this is how it works: *Go to your Sixth Picture Folder then pick your Sixth Picture.
Then pray that you remember the details. Tag 5 others.

Well, this is what I found:

Lucky girl me - I can remember the details exactly. We even used another one from the same series as our Xmas card that year.

Time: Somewhere between 4 and 6 October 2006.
Place: The world famous surfing village of Cape St Francis, Eastern Cape, SA. (fetured in the Endless Summer surfing classics as the perfect wave)
The occasion: We were driving back from Stormsriver mouth where we spent a couple of days with my FIL and MIL celebrating his 60th birthday. The Little Miss was 21 months old. And in her hands is the infamous "Bersie-beer" I'll have to tell all about that one.

So, I am tagging the following girls:
1. Heaven's mom at Frizzy & bird
2. Nancy at the Zimmer Zoo
3. Rachael at Little bites...
4. Terri at Irish eyes...
5. Jen at Buried with children

Have fun girls!

Weekend report

So I can hear you saying, here we are on Thursday and nothing about the last weekend yet! And I have been known to bypass 3 weekends in a row with no postings! Still have to catch up on those! So here follows the weekend, mainly in pictures:

Farmers market on Saturday morning. We buy a lot of our fresh produce there as well as chicken, meat, cheese, milk, yogurt, flowers etc. We also met up with Aunt Surene and cousin Nicola.

The Boys had their first taste of pancake (SA style - like crepes) with cinnamon and sugar.

The Little Miss and I made Rice Crispy cakes.

And had a Little tea party with real Rooibos tea, ceramic mini cups and hats.

And I went riding and took the camera along to take a picture of our smallest horsewoman.

On Sunday morning it was one-on -one time for me and The Little Miss - we went to a local nursery with a tea garden, petting zoo and playground.

She was a teensy bit scared of the parrot.

She loved the bunnies, off course.

And made friends with an Angora goat - the munchies basket the kids get to feed the animals is so cute!

But what she enjoyed most was splashing in the water that ran through the nursery. I bought 4 roses which I really hope will bloom and bloom like my mom's. My mom is a rose fundi - you should see her garden!

And my favourite of her - catching a ride on an eagle statue.

Wednesday, 8 October 2008

Way back WHEN-sday

The Little Miss in her babybanz, age about 1, taking a snooze in the car. Head over to Cheryl's to see who else is joining.

Meme/ award from Nancy

Thanks to Nancy for this! I have been a terrible bloggy friend by not acknowledging awards or doing memes in the past - just another result of my hectic life. So I have resolved to do these immediately upon receipt even if it means missing another regular posting.

The rules are simple: answer the following questions with one word answers, then pass the award on to seven others.

1. Where is your cell phone? Front
2. Where is your significant other? work
3. Your hair color? Greying
4. Your mother? Home
5. Your father? Heaven
6. Your favorite thing? Coffee
7. Your dream last night? None

8. Your dream/goal? Happiness
9. The room your in? Office
10. Your hobby? Riding
11. Your fear? Alone
12. Where do you want to be in six years? Sea
13. Where were you last night? Home
14. What you’re not? Dishonest
15. One of your wish list items? Pool
16. Where you grew up? Pretoria
17. The last thing you did? Tea
18. What are you wearing? Skirt
19. Your TV? Home
20. Your pet? Labradors
21. Your computer? Laptop
22. Your mood? Optimistic
23. Missing someone? Nanna
24. Your car? Zaffira
25. Something you’re not wearing? Jersey
26. Favorite store? Woolworths
27. Your summer? Almost
28. Love someone? Yes!
29. Your favorite color? Purpleish-blue
30. When is the last time you laughed? Morning
31. Last time you cried? Monday

I have heaps to do at work, so I am taking the short way out - if you want to do this, tag, you're it! Let me know please - I would love to read yours.

Tuesday, 7 October 2008

Two for Tuesday

I have heaps of news about the weekend and the last two days, but will get back to that later. For today's Two for Tuesday, here are The Boys on Saturday morning, sharing that special twin bond. Head over to Deanna's to share your special twosomes.

Friday, 3 October 2008

5 Things Friday...

So as not to completely skip another weekend, 5 fun things we did on Granny Annie's last weekend with us .

1. We made homemade pizza on Friday night and Granny and The Little Miss had heaps of fun slapping it together. We had faces, animals etc on our pizzas!

2. Granny and I took The Little Miss to her swimming lesson - she is starting to gain strength in the water and for it was great for Granny who never has the chance to experience this.

3. We went to our local multiples club's get together at the National Botanical gardens. I am still waiting for a photo of the whole group, but I think we were 9 sets of twins and one set of triplets.

Granny with The Boys in their "Special twins" outfits that she bought in Dubai. Little man C was irritated as we had to keep him from stumbling over smaller babies all the time. Little man L enjoyed the two 8 month girls' company.

The Little Miss with friends Nicole and Courtney.

4. The Little Miss and Gran took me to my horse riding on Saturday afternoon and she got the chance to get on the horse on her own. We led her once around the arena and she wanted more! She has a very nice little posture on the horse - there's my little dressage rider. Ugh, and I did not take the camera along. Bummer!

5. We did our "koppie" hike again. A "koppie" is a hill in SA lingo. This is about 3 km's ( 1,85 miles) from our home and we used to hike this every Sunday. It is a small nature conservancy in the city. It is quite a steep hike. Because of the winter etc, we have not taken The Boys up there yet, but H, A and the pups have been keeping it up almost without a fail.

At 23 weeks pregnant with The Boys, this was my last time on the "koppie". With A my last climb was at 31 weeks, just before I was ordered to take it slower.

On Sunday morning we hiked up again, each with a kid on our backs. It was lovely to accomplish this again - I thought I would not make it, being relatively unfit at present. But I did, more comfortable than I thought it would be. And see how dry it is at the moment? ( The green you see is sports fields - green all year round) We are anxiously awaiting our first Spring rains ( w live in a summer rainfall area) - last night we had thunder and lightning, but no rain. Tonight's looking good for rain at the moment. We are all sneezing through the proverbial clouds of dust and pollen in the driest time of the year.

Friday Foto Finish Fiesta

This is Little Man L this morning. Pooed himself completely out of his nappy and PJ's and had to take an impromptu bath in our bathroom's wash hand basin. Yes, at a year he is still small enough to fit. He loves the mirror! Must come from living with a princess sister, looking in the mirror constantly.

And for all who asked, last week's picture was a huge piece of driftwood washed up on the rocks - I will tell more about that in one of our holiday posts to follow.

Check out Candid Carrie to see who is playing along.