Wednesday 30 June 2010

It's been a while....

since I have published a review, but up until this month I have still been keeping to my goal of 3 books a month. This month though, I have read only 1. It is as if I simply can not get absorbed enough into a book - I am halfway through 2 and a quarter way into two others, but yes, no finishers. I have some catching up to do.Mainly also on getting my reviews up here.

Tuesday 29 June 2010

So what does the world cup mean to you?

We all got into the spirit somehow and now, with Ghana left int he cup, we all support our African team. But what does the world cup mean to us? I believe that the value is two fold - positive publicity for future tourist and purely money brought into South Africa.

These figures were sent out on Classic FM last week. In the last 3 weeks the following figures applied:

Amount of overseas visitors passports processed at South African airports: 700 000
Amount of money spent on VISA foreign credit cards only: 400 million rands.
Amount of VISA foreign card transactions as day: 25 000 more than last year day on day.

My local shopping mall, Brooklyn Mall tells me that they are experiencing tracing densities close to Christmas shopping. Only in May were they 15% up day on day on last year. Admittedly they have Pretoria's FIFA ticket office in the mall, but as you walk there you are astounded by the amount of tourists and languages floating around. The traders in the mall are more than happy. And guess who are making the most money? Woolworths has huge trading volumes due to the supporters gear that they stock. The restaurants are doing fast trade.  And then the jewelery shops - my word - the one was so full on Tuesday morning with American tourists you could not step inside it. I am talking high class shops here too.The one assistant tells me they are selling a lot of diamond jewelery.

But talking of which, I thought Brooklyn Mall's advertising campaign for the world cup was great. In stead of doing the typical players etc, they got the "real people" of the mall involved. They shot a series of "Soccer supporter" pictures with well known mall faces - owners of shops, shop assistants,  the center manager, one of the cleaning staff, one of the security guards , etc. People whose faces you know if you get there often - original, viby and really creative. I also love the makarapa exhibition.

Monday 28 June 2010

The first signs.

Playing along with Cheryl.
Do you know what makes my Monday today? Summer clothing in Woolworths!
Always the first sign of summer approaching (although we are of course in mid winter). So you can tell I am not a winter person?
(Pardon the date marker in the picture - taken with the office point and shoot after I was on site this morning.)

Saturday 26 June 2010

You can tell things re bit crazy over here.

I missed my 365 post yesterday - for the first time ever! I left my camera and memory card at home so I could not complete my post early on Friday an last night, just didn't happen. We took our chance with my MIL here to go and see "Robin Hood" last night. We both really enjoyed the movie - just to come home to a puking little man L and granny cleaning up. It was a really rough night last night, but here's hoping for a good night tonight.

And in other news, I now have 100 followers.
Hosted by Chris

I love these spontaneous moments captured in time. 
  20 June 2010:

The bride and her godson sharing a quiet moment.
  21 June 2010:

Little man L's sneakers and tiger socks in the swing. 

  22 June 2010:


  23 June 2010:

These are not lowers, they are fruits! The berries at the bottom open to the orange "flowers" . This is what the flowers looked like in February:

  24 June 2010:

 It's a triangle mommy!

Friday 25 June 2010

It was one of those...

days yesterday - the ones all moms look forward to - NOT!

At 10:15 the school calls, the Lil Miss is not feeling well, has tummy cramps and feels nauseous.Between two meetings I rush to pick her up, buy Coke and Energade and take her home, where thankfully I have both Lucy and my MIL to help out. When I get to the school she has already started puking and I go home with a bag full of soiled clothes - and she in her spare set that we have to leave in their school bags. On the way home we stop on the sidewalk for another session.

Once at home, all she wants is mommy who rushes to make the Coke and rehydrate mix and feed some Buscopan, switch on a DVD and comfort her on the couch. I make it back to work just in time for my 11 o'clock meeting - I am Wonder woman I tell you. At times I fly! (Does she even fly?)

My MIL kindly decided to make some lasagne for dinner and another two for my freezer so in amongst a  sick kid and my mom insisting to take her to lunch, she cooks. No maybe she is Wonder woman? When I get home at 5  the princess is has stopped puking but is very tired. MIL is rushing in the kitchen because due to above factors she has not managed to finish her cooking. Just in time for dinner, the one lasagna is finished and I dish some up for the boys. Little man L finish a huge portion - his brother refuses to eat but drinks his milk. I should have know.....

So we proceed upstairs to bath the kids - the princess is so tired that she just falls into our bed and sleep without a bath. I force manage to get some energade into her before she falls asleep. My MIL and I bath the boys and put them to bed. After getting downstairs, me feeding the dogs and she back to the lasagna factory once again Little Man C starts crying - I let him cry because it is the usual thing - he stops in a short while. The next moment Little Man L shouts - "Mamma kom kyk" (Mom come see) to find Little Man C joining the puking fest. So MIL leaves the lasagna behind, we clean bed and kid and take him downstairs to monitor. I phone Hunter, who is working late to bring more rehydrate. My MIL sits with sick kid as I load the bedding and clothes in the washing machine and the I swap with her so that she can at last finish the lasagna.  Hunter takes over when he comes home and we eat at about 9pm.We were expecting an eventful night with no 3 joining and at least 2 kids puking.

At about 9:30 Little man C has not had another session - just the one - so I put him in his own bed and my MIL kindly offers to check on him during the night. I make a mattress bed for the princess in our room and move her there, my MIL and I both have a bath and go to bed (Hunter has to watch his bit of soccer before bedtime). And guess what? We had a puke free night. Totally. The princess woke up twice - once to ask for her energade to drink and once to visit the loo. For the rest we slept. Wonders never cease to happen.

Thursday 24 June 2010


Hey, Thursday and team-up time:

I chose "Balance " as the topic for the week.
First, Shayne's:
I had a few options to use for this theme and I just couldn't decide.  So settled on this.  Very literal interpretation of the word.  But let me explain nontheless.  I could not resist buying this little 'Gardening Angel' from my favourite gift shop in our little dorpie (town).  But golly, she just does not hang.  No matter what I do she falls down.  I don't think there is an distribution of weight.  So i finally decided to put her in this flower pot - but she is very precariously balanced.  The slightest breath of wind and boom, down she goes.  But i refuse to give in and this is where she is going to stay!


I had so many other ideas in mind when I chose "balance" as a theme - the princess balancing on one of the garden hedges like she often does, or trying to do a yoga pose. When I just stumbled on this one, impromptu happening on the patio, I decided to snap it. Little man C decided that puzzle boxes make great towers. Balancing them is hard hard work.

Other teams participating:
Marcelle and Kerstin

Tuesday 22 June 2010

I know, I know...

I have really been very quiet around the blogsphere but I had my in-laws over for the weekend, a family wedding and Fathers day in the mix. Plus a half day work yesterday to attend to the most urgent in order to get some last minute time in with my FIL before he returns to Port Elizabeth. My fabulous MIL is still staying for another week. Yeah! In this week, I will sleep better (she sleeps in the room with the boys so that we can rest a bit), get home at night to fully cooked meals while she teaches the meal of the day to Lucy to improve her menu options, and have lovely company. You can tell I love my MIL!

In other super fabulous news I managed to book really cheap flights to Cape Town for me and the princess to visit my SIL and BIL in 3 weeks time - the first time ever I actually managed to book on a Kulula special - and that the last weekend in the school holidays. I am super excited. I am keeping it as a surprise for her tonight - she is going to freak out completely. And today is Bafana bafana's very last chance (although slim) to go through to round two. Let's hope! And support in full force.

So onto Fathers day 2010:
I really wanted to do a great post about how fab Hunter is and what fab dad he is, but my regular readers know he is and I just did not have time on Staurday. Truly, he is the absolute best dad ever and just as great a hubby. Seeing that we were going to a wedding for lunch on Fathers day, I was left with breakfast as a treat. It was extra special to have my FIL there as well. I made croissants (thanks Woollies), scrambled eggs and several toppings and spreads. With our famous house coffee it was a big hit all round. They also both loved their presents - ever practical Hunter got some track suits etc.

The wedding was Hunter's cousin getting married to her prince from Namibia - truly a love story they will be able to tell their kids some day. It was small and intimate and really enjoyable. So, what would a post be without wedding pictures?
Even the family happy snapper (me) had a second shoot for the day - Uncle Bert asked Hunter to also take photos - I am busy editing about 700 pictures from both the cameras. So, the family photographers of the day:

I really loved the bride's little wrist bouquet -I thought it was so special. Her dress was also truly beautiful - the material exquisite.

Friday 18 June 2010

Friday - 18 June 2010.

Another Friday - thank goodness!

PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily
Hosted by Chris

  12 June 2010:

Almost 2 weeks old, these roses. Makes you wonder if they were super fresh or zapped by some strange radiation.
  13 June 2010:

 Playing in the sand. Little man L's cute toes.
  14 June 2010:

 Got some 70's velveteen supporters gear - and wow, nice and warm too.
  15 June 2010:

In our part of the world, this is about as cold as it gets. Maximum of the day was 12 degrees C. And yes, I listen to Classic FM - I am weird that way - I like Bach and Mozart.
"Hallo Pappa" - he was calling daddy from granny's mobile.
  17 June 2010:

 Exhibition by Articles and Frames in Brooklyn Mall for the World cup.

Brought home this week from the school:: 
A chocolate flower - it was perfect but she could not resist a little bite on the way home in the car.


Wednesday 16 June 2010

A c-c-c-c-cold public holiday.

We are at present experiencing a huge cold spell - yesterday and today the maximum was 12 degrees C - for us possibly about the coldest days in the year. So an indoors day was called for - well, for the kids in any event. We did venture out to have tea at granny's and a very quick stop at the shops. For the rest of the day Hunter fixed up and expanded out irrigation system - a brave man seeing it was so cold, and I at last finished my big toys tidying and sorting project. The toy corner now looks like this:

However, the afternoon was spent mostly like this: sleeping

And that includes mommy and daddy. Perfect in this weather. A good day. Now it Bafana can only score a goal to equal with Uruguay.

Tuesday 15 June 2010

You might have noticed...

That thing are a bit quiet around here - I am not blogging, reading or commenting. Just busy at work and enjoying the soccer.

My mom had her 9th eye operation in two years on Saturday and although it is almost routine for us by now, it still makes for a tiring and difficult day. Not sleeping much the night before does not help either. On Sunday I took my mom and the kids to Foodprint, one of our regular hang-outs. The kids had a lot of fun and granny cheered up a lot. After a nap for all my mom and tow of 3 kids (Little man C just could not), we spent a bit of time outside before I took my mom home and Hunter gave me the evening off to go and have some coffee and cake with my cousin and friend Ananda. Hunter is great with that - he knows when I reach my limits and need a break.

For the rest it's work work work. 

Friday 11 June 2010

Can you feel it? It's Nation pride, that;s what it is.

Wow, I am blown away. Amazed at the hugely positive spirit and nation pride all around me. Even the skeptics (like me) have been overwhelmed by it all. The stadiums are all complete, most of the roads done and ready for use and the shopping malls are filled with visitors speaking the languages of the world. Last night I watched most of the concert for the opening of the Soccer world cup - it was an amazing event. My favorite part - Archbishop Desmund Tutu (or Oompie Des as I will always now think of him). What an amazing man and amazing moment in history. Today, we are all proudly dressed - me in my SA bling and the kids and Hunter in Bafanna Bafanna gear. At the office, the fever is running high and we will be closing early to watch. Go Bafanna Bafanna!
PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily
Hosted by Chris

  5 June 2010:

 My lavender hedge is awakening in winter.
  6 June 2010:

 The much photographed shell mobile has a new tenant. I love the light in this one.
  7 June 2010:

Report card and artwork home day for the end of second term. The art reflects this term's themes - dinosaurs, volcanoes, water, etc.

Go check out some more kiddy crafts at Jen's:

 National supporters Bafana Bafana day. Hunter and I made her little makarapa (the hat). It was all Vuvuzelas and nation pride.

Thursday 10 June 2010

2010 Soccer World Cup fever.

 I chose 2010 World cup soccer fever for our theme this week as tomorrow will see the opening ceremony and match.

First Shayne's:
When Cat suggested Soccer Fever as this weeks topic - i thought great topic, but where do I capture soccer fever in my small dorpie?  I had a whack of plans, non of which materialised.  This shot did though, which was by fluk (accident) and I'm completely thrilled with it!  My eldest daughter was obviously having a Soccer moment, and I caught her loafing on the couch, completely mesmerised by whatever was on the TV, with all her soccer paraphenalia around her.  I just love the vibrancy of the colours and her idle fiddling with the flag (on a pencil!).  So altho there may be no Soccer Fever in our small farming town - there sure is in our house!

I really took so many pictures over the week for this one - flags, kids in soccer shirts, vuvuzelas etc, but this one somehow remains my favorite as the colours are just so vibrant. This street seller apparently only sells South Africa supporters items and no other country's but you can literally get anything for any country for sale on your local street corner.

For some more Team up Thursdays have a look at:
Marcelle and Kerstin

Wednesday 9 June 2010

Our Little man L - literally.

We had an important milestone last night - for the first time ever little man L weighed in at all of 12 kg (26,5 pounds). Fellow moms will know that this is tiny for a two and a half year old. In fact, he has been small ever since he had a growth slow-down at around 7 months after having two stints in the hospital in just over a month. Born at 2,92kg (6,4 pounds) as a twin at 37 weeks he was anything but small, but somehow he got left behind in the growing department. The difference in size between the twins has become more and more pronounced. At their two year check-up, his weight was still on the 5th percentile with his height at the 10th. A few weeks ago I realized that the height difference between the boys must be about 2cm and his brother weighed in at 2kg more than he did. So I made the appointment to see the Pediatrician for a growth check. I was so worried about him - I Googled (never do that!), I worried.

The doctor weighed and measured, checked and pronounced him healthy. The she added the numbers to his growth chart and what a surprise - his weight is now at the 10th percentile and his height at the 25th percentile. It seems he has grown a lot but little man C definitely had a growth spurt of note - hence the bigger size difference. She also calculated his genetic expected height, which should be above the 75th percentile. His sister is at the 98th percentile in height at present, which is over her expected genetic height, but we have very tall genes in the families. We have therefore decided to give him time to grow until his 3 year check-up and if he has not progressed on the height chart (his weight will be under average because he of his low muscle tone) she will do a bone-age test to determine if he possibly has a younger bone age. His growth chart will then be adapted. If not, we will proceed to growth hormone tests etc. So little boy, please continue to grow! And grow!

Tuesday 8 June 2010

I read therefore I am.

So when do you buy magazines? I used to religiously buy four magazines per month - one Afrikaans woman's magazine (Sarie or Rooi rose), one English woman's magazine (Fair lady or Femina) and two others (Ideas, House and Leisure, Shape, O, Leef or whatever looked interesting). (I am not counting the masses or Architectural magazines we get at the office).  I never subscribed because I usually bought in each category whichever one's headlines on the cover had an article of interest. With the slowing down of the economy and cutting back of costs, it was the obvious place for me to cut back on. Adding to that the joining of the Book club and having access to great reading matter for R50,00 a month and once a year getting all your year's money back to spend on books you want, also helped in the decision.

But I still buy magazines - every now and again. To read in the bath - you see, I believe that a book does not belong anywhere near water. When on holiday I also treat myself to a few. But these days I find myself buying, not because of the articles, but because of the countless free stuff. I choose my magazines by the attraction of the "free gift" - hence this month I bought the Fair Lady - free eyeshadow (just when my trusty container broke) and free body wash. Value for money I say! Great cover picture too.
So which magazines do you buy and what do you base your choice on? Or do you subscribe? And do you still get the free stuff if you subscribe?

Monday 7 June 2010

The Monday before soccer world cup 2010.

On Firday it is kick-off for the great event. Our office is closing at 1pm to give everybody the chance to view the opening ceremony and match. I am going to love the afternoon with the kids. We will get some snacks and I am sure they will be bored beyond words, but we will give it a shot. So we are all geared to some extend for the big event. Hunter has the ordinary Bafanna Bafanna supporters shirt. The cars are all decked out and "dressed"

I decided on an alternative take to soccer shirt Friday (I really look crap in yellow) so I patriotically bling (I see Jenty has the same one - wish I had her velour jacket though) Pardon the crappy self portrait.

For the kids, I also went a bit alternative. The real Bafanna shirts are so expensive and the cheaper ones at the retailers were all sold out, so the Lil' Miss' school came up with this idea:

You get them at Mr Price at R49,95 each. The boys also both have one. a different design each. I must have seen about 5 designs at the school all with different animals playing soccer.

Hunter and I have also both chosen "our" teams (as we do not see Bafanna going very far). Hunter has always supported Greece in soccer so he will continue to do so. I think it's fine - after all they have great food and I loved the place. My "second team" in rugby (after the Springboks) are the French, so I will support the charmers in soccer too. (Although on Saurday I am firmly behind the 'Boks when they play France.) The Lil' Miss seem to miss the whole concept of soccer vs rugby - she insist she will support the Blue Bulls! I tried to explain that it's a different game and like the Springboks Bafanna Bafanna is South Africa's team. Then she asked if there are Blue Blulls in the Bafanna team ( I explained earlier that there are Blue Bulls in the Springbok team). When I said no, she insisted that she will then support the Blue Bulls for the Soccer World Cup 2010. I am trusting the excitement at the school and the theme this week "South Africa our land" to turn her into an entusiastic Bafanna supporter, because they sure knew how to turn her into a Blue Bulls supporter (not that I mind).

So what are your family's plans for the soccer?

Friday 4 June 2010

Friday - 4 June 2010

PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily
Hosted by Chris

  28 May 2010:

 A bit of garden texture - detail of an African Tree Aloe.

  30 May 2010:

Promise of splendor. My mom's orchid in the garden has 9 strings this year. Waiting for the buds to open. 

 If you have an older sister I guess an Alice band cna become an imaginary set of earphones.

  1 June 2010:

The beautiful autumn colours in the sunshine. 

  2 June 2010:

 Got these lovelies from my friend Carli on Sunday.

  3 June 2010:

 Soccer world cup fever - some cars sport flags, others mirror covers, some one country, others two, but by far the most frequent - the South African flag. I like the reflexion in this picture.