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And that’s how you do a weekend…

2 September , 2014

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A little surprise left for me by Nicola on Saturday – say it with me, “Ah aweet!’ :-D

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Nicola getting BUSY with scissors, to add some love to a card we were making.

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Mmm…frozen margerita. Yumm! Seriously, I haven’t had one of these babies in aaaages – it was just what I wanted.

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Good friends, having a great time catching up. Marcia’s poor D had his hands full (of cameras)! ;-)

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Nicola and Ouma, building pizzas. Some seriously sweet conversations in this kitchen.

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Sunday family lunch. Followed by a really awesome afternoon nap for Nicola and I. :-)

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Apricot blossoms – and just in time to be my Spring header image too!

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And talking about Spring, you guys know how I’ve been counting off the days. Well this was Nicola’s Spring outfit yesterday. Somehow I forgot to take a photo of mine, but anyway – I managed to uphold the Spring day dress wearing tradition, even though it was still a bit fresh out for that!

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Yesterday was also a great fb photo day for me – haha! This beautiful photo was taken by cat on Saturday. I love it! This is definitely getting framed.

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And this one was taken a few weeks ago at my friend Ivy’s Gatsby party.

Anyhoo, this past weekend had just the right mix of fun and rest as far as I’m concerned. I could do with another, just like it – but possibly a bit warmer so that we can get our swim on already!

How was your weekend?

PS! Thursday will be a biggish day for us. We have the information day at the Primary School in the morning, and Polka is going for the great snip. Expect a more wordy update from me by the end of the week. ;-)

PPS! I need to plant something…TODAY. I’m planting out container plants and sowing a few seeds, hopefully some time this weekend we might find time to pop round to a nursery and get something pretty to add to that.

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There are some STRANGE cats “out there”

29 August , 2014

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Read the rest of this entry »

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Cold snap – hold on to your kites kids!

29 August , 2014

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Just as we all thought, aaaah…Spring is in the air… :-D …a vicious cold snap to end off the winter properly whips through. Bliksem, dis koud!

Can all the coastal provinces please get a handle on your butterflies or stop doing whatever attracts the snow? We just get the ugly cold wind up here. At least you have something pretty to look at while you’re freezing.

Asked this man last weekend if I could take a pic of his T-shirt, he said sure – but not his face. So there you have it. ;-) Obviously a very clever man.

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This was Wednesday. As you can see Nicola is quite geared up for Spring now. Just compare her outfit with her two class mates! Hahaha…

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I INSISTED on something warm over it in the morning, don’t worry – typical mom-move.

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How peaceful does she look here, right? She fell asleep in the car on the way to my folks. Poor kid. they are phasing out naps at school, and she’s really feeling it.

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Seen around: Nasty hobitses! Hahaha…

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One cool thing about the freezing weather today – I get to try out me new scarf from Marcia! :-)

Love this colour.

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Some of the smokers at secret place – hundled in the corners of balconies. Shame…I felt like torching that ash tray earlier. The wind is blowing so hard that you actually battle to open the door to get out in the first place.

I have a rant coming, but I don’t feel like posting it along with my fun and pretty things. I am actually not altogether sure that everybody should read my other post. Anyhoo, I’m going to publish, for the sake of completeness of history and so on. Feel free to skip past…or have a laugh with me (I told one of my colleagues and he almost needed help breathing after he heard the story – apparently hilarious).

*shrug*

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Adventures of the last week

25 August , 2014

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Clearly Polka needs to see a parlour again. She’s looking a bit like Wookie from Star Wars here, which is the name I sort of leaned towards before Nicola picked Polka. ;-)

She has excellent car manners, since she spends quite a bit of time in the car with either me or us. When it’s just the two of us she sits in the front passanger seat like this, and she sings along to the radio when I do. When Nicola is in the car too, she sits like this either on the back seat, or in the foot well on the passenger side. It took her about a week right in the beginning to get the lay of the land – I can’t have her crawling underneath the peddles while I’m driving so I had to be very strict…but she picked it up super quick.

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Secret place have put up these blue lights at all the lifts. They kind of remind me of E-toll gantries, but it still doesn’t stop me from taking the lift – especially now that we’ve moved up to the third floor. ;-)

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Saw this on the side of the road…I imagine it’s for some sort of granite, but I do find it quirky that you’d advertise either kitchens/tombstones on the same display – almost like one had something to do with the other.

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Another non-fan of stick people spotted.

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On Friday my cousin, Melanie, popped in for a visit and we went out to go get pizza. It was great catching up with her again, and after Nicola made her sit through a school concert DVD and a full length animated movie, little miss passed out and the big girls got to properly chat.

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This isn’t the best light for it, but I was trying to show Nicola that her eyes go green in the sun. She very patiently sat stil while I was trying to get the shot. ;-)

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Playing at Ouma and Oupa’s house with Mieka in the cot. This cot is moving soon, and to soften the blow (not that she ever slept in it, but she loves playing there) we’ve said that we need the space to put up her tent for her to play in. So far, so good.

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Birthday lunch with my ol’ buddy ol’ pal for her birthday which was on the 16th. We come a long way…we started off knowing each other as boarding school roommates way back when.

She has a particular talent of finding houses to live in that cannot be tracked with a normal GPS! Hahaha, seriously – this girl moves around a lot and I have NEVER been able to just stick her new address in my GPS and go. This time I had to install 4sq to find it, but once I worked out how to get there it wasn’t too bad.

Nicola was an absolute angel while we were there (actually the whole weekend). Seriously, more than one person at this party came over to compliment me on her behaviour – it was THAT good. The other little girls were kicking, hitting and screaming – someone had to make a sticker chart for them to get 20 minutes of peace and quiet. Nicola was just happily playing on her own, minding her own business and just checking in with me every now and then. She also made a point of thanking the one lady every time some sugar (Fizzer toffees) was sent into the mix. I was so proud of her (as always, but this time even more than usual!).

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We left a little bit later than we planned, but at least we got to see this beautiful sunset on the way home.

Sidenote: from time to time I suspect that I may be going night blind, and I am a little bit, but not nearly as much as I thought. We used my dad’s car to go to pretoria and back and i mostly saw just fine in it…I think my car is in desperate need of a proper wash (and not the was and go type either). ;-)

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My parents’ new neighbours are real party animals! We thought the previous lot were, but they’re not a touch on the new ones! I think they’ve had a all night party every single weekend since they’ve moved in (probably about three months now). On Saturday they really went all out, since it was the wife’s 30th. These balloons were rigged with LEDs and changed colour every few seconds…until well past 3:00 in the morning as per my mom.

Anyway, it looked fantastic…and to their credit they did invite my folks over to join the party.

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On Sunday we went to the circus! :-D (Yes, that one – but that didn’t happen while we were there).

Nicola was beyond excited since this was the first time she’s ever been – and I think the last time I was at one I was still in primary school.

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At the ticket office, picking up our tickets.

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I love this photo of my little pink terrorrist. :-)

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We had about an hour to kill before the show, so we popped in to Garden World for a walk around, because there was no way I could get Nicola to wait in the car for an hour!

She sniffed many flowers, but all very quickly and this is the only photo I managed to get of that! 7 Days till Spring Day by the way…I can’t wait!

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They have a farm yeard there that you can walk through.

This duck was following me…I’m sure of it!

My dad saw a tortoise in the one section and he said, “Nicola, kyk! Daar’s ‘n skilpad!” She looks over and says, “Nee Oupa, dis net die skil.” He had his head, tail and feet tucked in so you could only see the shell. Mwahaha! (I would translate this, but it doesn’t translate well…sorry).

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When we came out of the farm yard section Nicola says, “What can we do next? I know…let’s see if we can see an ice cream van? AHA! Look!” Hahaha, very subtle. ;-) So we had some ice cream.

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On the swing with Oupa, enjoying every last bite of that ice cream…

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Nicola convinced my dad to lift her onto his shoulders, the most fun ride in the world as you can see. She always grabs the poor man by his ears and then starts swaying from side to side when she’s up there!

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Finally, the show is about to start! We’re not allowed to take photos during the show, only right at the end they give you chance to catch one of the acrobat/stunt guys in action. The cage comes off after the big cat part of the show too, but anyway – this is what it looks like right at the beginning.

I think the tiger that mauled the guy wasn’t in the show, but if he was my money is on the white tiger. He seemed not at all interested in the handler, and was checking out the audience all through their act. They really are very beautiful, but I wouldn’t want to run into one on the loose! These cats have probably grown up in the circus, but after everything – at heart, they are still wild animals.

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All of us.

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Someone got a pair of flashing glasses as a momento, and a light wand too – she loved every second of it!

This is the video I took, right at the end when you’re allowed to. That guy is running on the outside of that contraption…and for some parts of it, he’s doing it blind-folded!

https://vimeo.com/104270452

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It was such a fun adventure, and we were all wiped out tired after that! Nicola passed out well before bed time, sticky from head to toe with a big smile on her face. :-D

How was your weekend?

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Practically Post-Plague Catch-Up Post

18 August , 2014

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Nicola surprised the heck out of me this past week when she all of a sardine wrote her own name on a piece of paper! I didn’t have a clue that she could actually do this – very impressed. We didn’t have a gradual progression of illegible letters and then eventually end up on this either…last week she was still making zig-zags in a “letter”, and this week she’s writing! I cann’t wait for her to properly start reading – I think she’s going to get a real kick out of that. :-)

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So I am still with flu, in case you were wondering…

Feeling about 1000 X better than last week, but on a scale of the pits to absolutely fantastic, I’m still hovering on the pits end of the spectrum. I just keep telling myself that every day gets a bit better…and mostly I believe myself too! ;-)

I had the pleasure of meeting a new doctor at my local medicross last week. What an odd little man, although I’d say a fairly decent doctor at least. Local humour doesn’t translate well when you’re from Iran. He got real nervous when I told him I had the plague for instance. In retrospect probably not the best joke to crack when there’s a world wide Ebola scare on the go – I concede.

He gave me a prescription for meds that I have never had before (which actually should tell you a lot, because I’ve had plenty) and even walked me to the pharmacy to make sure that I either got what he prescribed or in the case of the cough syrup he went through their inventory finding me a suitable replacement.

He said (amongst other things) that I wasn’t allowed to drink cold things, or eat solid food for two days at least – or I’d end up with gastro on top of everything else…I have now established that my tolerance for chicken soup is about three bowls in a row. After that I really have had enough of liquid food – consequences be damned (of which I seem to have missed out on this round, thank goodness).

He also gave me these little blue jobbies to help me sleep at night, because I told him I tried some over the counter meds and my cousin had told me about the Benylin two-step, so I tried that to see if it could be helpful in sleeping because I keep coughing myself awake. Rotten luck, because I somehow managed to pick the only bottle with no alcohol in it, so that has been totally useless. Anyway, these blue pills of his feel like elephant tranquilisers! I had one the first night (Thursday) and I feel like I haven’t properly woken up since then…not having anymore of THOSE, haha…and I’m actually supposed to take two every night!

I am rocking a very husky version of my actual voice at the moment. It’s…interesting. I’d talk to myself all day long if it didn’t hurt my throat so much. ;-)

I am sincerely hoping that once I kick this particular flu’s butt, that I will be sniffle and cough free until at least the end of the year. Change of season plagues are the worst!

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I woke up briefly on Friday to take a phone call, and felt something warm and fluffy on my back. Polka has really been enjoying the extra time I spent at home this week!

Just before picking Nicola up from school, I popped in at R&K’s to drop off their hard drive – and we did a few video clips for K’s wedding dress business (this is for people who want to mail in their own measurements, but aren’t sure what the term bust, or hollow-to-hem means). It went very well, until I cracked one little joke about slapping of wrists and a teapot…after that we had a whole lot of retakes because either K or myself would just burts out laughing before we could get the take properly. It wasn’t even that funny really, but we just couldn’t stop laughing. Does that ever happen to you? Hehehe…we got it done eventually, and I really enjoyed the laugh!

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Nicola decided that I would probably feel a lot better if I got dolled up (over the weekend). I woke up to her putting many shades of eye shadow on me and a play ring for every finger I have. You know what…I did actually feel a bit better, but I think I forgot to wipe off the worst of it before we went out, because the vet gave me an odd look (not the hot vet this time).

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Poor Polka. Saturday morning when I woke up, I saw that she wasn’t quite herself and then later found a trail of blood spots all over. Upon investigation it seems that she must have snagged a nail against something somewhere during the night (because she was fine on Friday). She half tore the poor nail out and was clearly in a lot of pain. The vet had to pull the nail (she says it will grow back eventually), and Polka has her own bag of meds to take. The bandage can come off tomorrow.

I was a bit worried about making her take the pills, but I needn’t have worried. I just put them in the bowl with her pellets and she eats them with no fuss whatsoever. The pain killers really knocks her out, poor baby.

Gosh, I hope this is not going to be a regular thing – I’m still not sure where she managed to get that nail snagged like that. R500 to have A nail pulled in case you were wondering! It’s not the kind of thing that you can just leave though. If it picks up an infection it can be very serious on a tiny doggy like Polka.

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Being mothered by Nicola after her bad ouchy. This includes having her face wiped with this doily for some reason – hahaha.

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By Sunday she had stopped trying to shake off the bandage. She can still get round pretty well, even jump couches if no one is looking…but she’s not above playing the sympathy card hahaha. In the mornings she hobbles over to the stairs and then gives me “the face”, so I end up carrying her up and down so that she can follow me around while I do laundry, take a bath or make some coffee.

Isn’t this just the cutest photo of Nicola and Polka?

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I’m seeing a bit of green around. Still officially 14 days till Spring Day, but it’s definitely heading in the right direction. :-D

We had the most awesome storm Saturday night. Thunder! Lightning! Soft rain! I loved every second of it. Nicola and Polka did not. They both jumped on top of me, which made breathing a bit of a challenge since I was already having trouble with that to begin with, but the snuggles were superb, and once they both fell asleep I could manouvre them a bit to take the pressure off my chest at least.

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My cousin is up from Richard’s Bay at the moment so we had a family braai on Sunday. I’m glad I dragged my sorry self out of bed to join in the fun. Somehow I managed to get a speck of ash (haha, thank goodness I decided to read through before hitting post, this very nearly said a speck of ass!)  in my eye along the way, but after irritating the hell out of me all afternoon, it finally sorted itself out later and the rest of the afternoon was just lovely.

We had the get together at his younger brother’s house. My first visit there. I covet his dining room table and chairs – big time! One day when i grow up and have an actual dining room, I must have it, or something very similar at least.

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Nicola doing a dance on Oupa’s neck! I have a whole string of photos, but these are my favourites.

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Haha,  saw this at Nicola’s school this morning…on the bathroom door. It’s missing something – looks like there is no I in TO LET hey? I don’t actually know why they bothered with the name on the outside anyway, most of the patrons can’t read.

It feels like I still had something else I wanted to tell you, but for the life of me I just can’t remember what. It’ll come to me eventually…I’m sure of it. How was your weekend? How is this fine Monday morning treating you so far? Tell me of something semi-energetic you did recently, I am just not feeling it at all! Just keeping my eyes open feels like a big ask at the moment.

A very big ask…*yawn*

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I meant to post this on Monday…

12 August , 2014

Oh well…*shrug*

It’s been kind of crazy busy round here, and on top of everyrhing I’ve come down with the plague (flu) too, so all the days are kind of blending into one for me right now.

Let’s kick off with Saturday? (Or one-day part one).

My dear friend, L, popped in for a visit and while she was clowning around with Nicola, I managed to get quite a few nice photos. :-)

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L has just recently qualified as a life coach. I am so proud of her, and I think she’s going to be great at it!

We were talking about attitudes in general and I had a little giggle at how she summed up mine: angry…but cheerful (positive). That is so true actually! Although I am not nearly as angry as I used to be once upon a time. ;-) Let’s just say the pushover gene doesn’t swim in my family’s gene pool. Some might say assertive? Some might…others might run and hide. Hahaha!

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On Sunday (one-day part two).

As you know, every year for my birthday, I take my family on some sort of adventure.

This year with a much higher rent in the picture I decided I would attempt to feed them lunch, cooked by me, in our new place…since they haven’t broken bread with us here yet. ;-)

It’s not THAT much of an adventure really. I will freely admit to not being the best baker (it’s an exact science…and I’m fond of improvising), but cooking I’m fairly decent at actually.

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Of course while I’m trying to keep the house sort of tidy-ish and making a birthday adventure worthy sort of lunch, Nicola insist on dragging half her soft toys into the kitchen and unpacking all the china for a make believe tea party!

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As decreed by the pink tertorist, Polka had to wear her party dress…

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Well, I was running around like a lunatic getting everything ready…so no time to take photos of the food, but I think it turned out really good.

We had roast leg of lamb, and pork, homemade apple sauce, freshly baked bread, creamed spinach and salad…and for desert chocolate spring rolls with ice cream and strawberries (I didn’t actually make them, R & K did…just popped them in oil and dressed them up pretty).

Everyone ate till they could hardly keep their eyes open, so I count it a giant success. :-)

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Burst of colour at Nicola’s school.

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Someone is just as sick of winter as I am…it’s still too chilly for this outfit in the mornings, but as soon as we get home after work she’s in short sleeves before you can say boo!

Now I think we’re on one-day part four or thereabouts. I am wallowing in some self pity and cough syrup. And I got repeatedly kicked in the kidneys last night so didn’t sleep a wink. I have a date with a bag of flu meds and then hopefully off to lala-land.

Hope your week is off to a good start…I’ve been terrible at commenting this week. Also at keeping food down and general breathing, but I promise, I have been reading and as soon as I’m myself again I’ll try to catch up.

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Thirty Six

9 August , 2014

It was my birthday yesterday. Thank you every single person who wished me well, sang to me and generally just went out of their way to make my day special.

I think I’ll kick off this post on Thursday though…just because I can.

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Pretty sunrise again. It’s definitely getting lighter a bit earlier at the moment. Love it!

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I had a bit of a laundry day dress up (or dress on) situation. Everyone kept asking me if I was going for an interview, hahaha!

I almost sent an accidental SOS from the basement parking when I arrived at work. What I was actually trying to do was take a photo of my kick ass boots, but after a firmware update I did some time this week the phone now hangs when I try to take photos in bad light. Highly annoying really…must find out if I can roll back that update or tweak it a bit to work again.

Anyway, the moral of the story is not to repeatedly hammer on the power button to try and get the phone out of its jam when you’ve set up an emergency service to send photos, voice clips and GPS coordinates for that action.

My whole family could have ended up with a SOS of my boot! Haha, luckily I remembered after two presses and before I got to three…anyhoo the light was so bad I mostly ended up with a photo of my stocking anyway.

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Thursday night my mom and Nicola made me birthday cupcakes to take to work…so sweet.

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Just as we were discussing leaving the icing cream coloured, Nicola took off towards the mixer with a bottle of colouring CONCENTRATE and made sure that my cupcakes would be suitably cheery.

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Usually you put in maybe 3 drops, mwahaha!

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We managed to scoop out some of it. All oranges wish they were this brilliant! ;-)

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This is how pretty my cupcakes came out.

I successfully got all my colleagues on a pretty spectacular sugar rush. One of them probably had about 5 or 6 during the day, and he wished me a happy birthday every single time!

Another one of my colleagues sang to me in a Merilyn Monroe sort of way and called me Mrs President.

What’s not to love about that?! :-)

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On my actual birthday we kicked it off with a little sad.

Nicola asked for some paper to write a letter to her dad…she drew a heart filled with scribbles (apparently says that she has a heart full of love for him, and that he must please not forget about her). Followed by a drawing of him, and a page full of princess stickers, also apparently for him.

Yeah…this is what happens when you don’t talk smack about a missing parent I guess. *sigh*

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After work we had a lovely family dinner at my folks. My mom made my absolute favourite, her roast chicken. Sorry, no photos because as soon as it was in front of me I just climbed into it. ;-)

If I ever get into a situation where I need to choose a last meal, that’s the one I want!

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More cake! Yumm…

If you ever feel a bit too sugared up, put some cinamon in your coffee, or even in a glas of water and drink it. Little trick someone at work taught me. She’s diabetic and it works like magic for her. Works pretty great for me too.

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My parent drove home with us…

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And shortly after they left we were all man down.

I really had a great birthday, and thank you to everyone who helped making it so.

Ps! I didn’t mention the eartquake, did I? Well, it was pretty spectacular at my office. We’re on the third floor now, and you felt it quite clearly there. It went on for what felt like MINUTES, and even the partitions between the cubicles were smacking against each other.

I happened to be on the phone with someone at the Master of the court at that time. She had asked me to hold on and then the shaking started. I said to the Queen, “Do you feel that?!” and the court lady says in my ear, “YES! YES! I feel it!”. Mwahaha! I actually thought I was on hold, so that was a bit of a surprise.

5.5 earthquake with the epicentre just outside of Orkney (about 170km from here). A lot of things got badly damaged, but luckily only one fatality when a wall fell on someone.

I think in more densely populated areas a shake up of this magnitude can lead to some serious trouble. Thank God it was not the case this time.

Pps! The Master’s offices is a very interesting (and by that I mean bewildering) place. Never mind the officials and their peculiar rituals…the lift has no buttons on the inside and you kind of just ride it to where you want to go. If it happens to stop there, get out. If it doesn’t just wait…it’ll happen eventually.

Ppps! Equally odd the grumpy guy at the Government Gazette who yells down the line at you, “Is it a section 35 or a section 29?!”. Dude…what does that even mean? Those were my exact words so he had a little grumble and put me through to someone lovely who didn’t scream in clauses. ;-)

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