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New things – Growth

19 February , 2017

So I don’t know about you, but I like to get into a bit of growth after a break up and really 3 days is more or less how long I allow myself to wallow in self pity before I put my game face back on. 

How hard did I wallow? Considering I made the cut myself? Well…I wallowed sufficiently, I guess. For the first 2 days I was only seen in puffy eyes and by the third day I was still pretty sad but at least I didn’t burst into tears every time someone asked me how I was doing.

I guess it also helped somewhat to see him look absolutely unbothered by it all. And you know, remembering how it started. How we used to chat almost through the night in the beginning…and then seeing that he’s been online until the wee hours of the morning. This from a guy who hardly saw 20:00 in the last year and a half. Well, I guess he’s back on the horse then…and it’s fine. Why wouldn’t it be? Just adds a bit of perspective for me.

I reckon in the next week or so the last of his stuff will have been carted away and then it will feel more like the clean break it is.

Anyhoo, back to new things…

The first “new” thing I’ve been tackling is a case of the bants. Techically I have now been banting for almost 4 weeks and it’s been mostly awesome. 

So far I’m down just over 4kg and 11cm round my waist. Ironically this is something Steve and I were going to do together, but all he gave up was Play energy drinks. 

Oh well, it’s all mine now then. 😛 (And I’ll grab it with both grubby little paws since I still want/need to shake somewhere between 10 and 15kg). 

Hats off to those of you have been on this band wagon for years. Turns out, you were on to a fabulous thing and I should have jumped on ages ago. Thanks for sharing your journeys.

And as you may or may not be aware, I have been unemployed since last year July. Economy is in the crapper and my contract just didn’t get renewed. 

So in November, after sending out enough CVs to really be sick and tired of it, I started doing some work from home. It’s not exactly what I saw myself doing to be honest, but it’s work. And I seem to be doing okay at it.

In February I started doing it permanently. It’s kind of killing me now, but there are parts of that I enjoy. I put in a bit of time in the mornings when I get up at 4. Then lots more after I drop Nicola at school. In the afternoons at 15:00 I pick her up again and then we chill and homework and dinner a bit. And by 21:00 I’m back at it untill somewhere between 00:00 and 03:00. Then up again at 4, rinse and repeat. 

Seriously, I am working my ass off and I can hardly keep up. I am hoping with my new drama free homelife, my focus will be a bit better and things will fall in place with a little less blood, sweat and tears from my side.

I do love the lack of traffic, and the super flexibility of this job.

Anyway, I am happy to be working again. It has suckef big time being dependent on the kindness and support of family and friends. But that too, I have appreciated greatly. I really feel that at this stage in my life, I shouldn’t need bail outs as often as I do.

And then lastly (for now at least), a stroke of luck (or destiny), has crossed paths with me. 

For SOoooooome time now, I have known that the little engine that could a.k.a Blue Tazz, needed replacing. But you know, unemployed people aren’t generally in a great position to go car shopping and really my head space was so full of shit that I didn’t really worry too much about it. If it’s meant to be, it will be.

Out of the box isn’t really an option for me at the moment, but second hand I may be able to pull off. Only, I have a bit of a trust issue with second hand cars after what I went through with my first car (that tried to kill me!). 

So imagine how the heavens opened and angels sang on Friday, when I saw a friend who’s leaving the country advertised her car on fb! I know her, and I know her car, and I’m completely okay with it. 

So if all goes according to plan I will have a newer car by the end of this week! With aircon!!! And one whose roof doesn’t flap in the wind like a flag when I open the windows. 

You have no idea how exciting this for me! I have driven my trusty blue for close to 17 years. We have been PLACES, I tell you. Honestly, I’m going to miss it.

But this newer car feels like it’s been sent. It just feels right. I really saw myself in a red car next, but it turns out I was wrong. Because the one that finally spoke to me is silver. 

I can’t wait to see what adventures and new roads we hit first. 🙂

So, all things considered, I am doing just fine. How the heck are you?

Ps! Thanks and sorry to anyone who’s pics I’ve nicked off Pinterest for this post. 

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Yeah…so this happened

12 February , 2017


I’m not going to go into the details of it…sorry, not sorry. Let’s just say we tried, hard, but we realised that we were never going to be pulling in the same direction. 

Or you could say I realised that…since I pulled the plug on it. And met no resistance, so you know…it is what it is.

It sucks, also hard, because obviously this is not how I saw or wanted this all to end up, but I’m sure with a bit of time and space we’ll all come through it.

Of course I will hopefully be writing more often. I have been a dreadful lack of  a blogger, but you know when you’re in the middle of a shit storm it’s probably a good policy to keep your mouth shut.

And that, I think, is all I have to say about this for now. 

Sorry Steve, I do love you…but it’s not enough for me to survive in these conditions.

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Happy birthday Nicola!

19 December , 2016

Happy birthday my baby!

You bring adventure, love and laughter to every single day. You have a beautiful heart and I couldn’t be any prouder of you. 

I am the luckiest mom alive and I love you with all my heart. Thank you for being you! 

Xxx

Mamma

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Protected: 2016 – Uncle! Uncle! Uncle!

12 December , 2016

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Nothing earth shattering

12 October , 2016

I am so tired…and EMOTIONAL! Lots of fun to be around at the moment as you can imagine.

I’m in between contracts (aka unemployed) at the moment. It’s not really how I envisaged my 2016 to go down, but oh well, you know. These are the punches that need rolling with at this stage.

Also this rental house, which has been on the market for mooooonths now, and had 6 different agencies all trying to flog it at the same time, has been sold. And we have to be out end November.

If I don’t sort out my work situation soon, we might be looking for a cardboard box for 5 soon.

Also my car (aka the little engine that could), looks like it’s had enough. If you drive with more than one window open now, the ceiling fabric comes loose and flaps excitedly in the wind. It’s different, I’ll say that…

So yeah, I’m a bit down. If you see me, don’t ask me know I’m doing please. That seems to be my water works button at the moment. It’s awkward. Let’s rather talk about the shifty weather we’re having, or the students torching the University they want to attend for free.

Just don’t ask me how I am…please. I am not fucking great. Let’s leave it at that. I know this is all temporary and at some point I will have a chuckle about how dramatic I felt about it. I am really looking forward to that!

Okay, now some photos.

This is a week’s washing for us. This (on me, that you can’t see) is my no comment face.

Emergency dental visit. Of course. I’m glad it wasn’t serious obviously, but you know I could have spent that R700 on something else. Like petrol. Or rent. Or box tape for the move. Or food. Or phone bills. Or credit cards.

Oh well…*shrug*…it is what it is.

This too shall pass.

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Venterskroon 2016

8 October , 2016

Grr…so many photos and the app has chucked them in all out of sequence. Oh well…*shrug*

From the 30th till the 4th Nicola and I headed off to her 2nd big Voortrekker kamp at Venterskroon.

She did the Junior Cook badge and I threw my lot in with the kitchen again. You might be right if you’re wondering why I would do that to myself again after the previous camp where I worked like a galley slave, and you’d be partially right…only I still feel she gets more out of this experience if she doesn’t have me hovering around in her course, plus I had it on good authority that this kitchen was run considerably better than the previous one (it was).

Also I am currently operating under a personal amount of stress and pressure that might make cooking for 450 people seem relaxing. 😉

Anyhoo, on with the photos!

The top one is of where the kids wash their own dishes (with varying levels of success).

My partner in crime at the kitchen and coffee station. We shared a lot of laughs and squeezed every last bit of fun out of this experience that we could.

It was an absolute hoot!

Nicola and her bestie. If you’re wondering about the hats, the camp allocates a specific colour to each group and you have to wear it. This way it keeps the sun out of your face, you write your name on it so it also serves as a name tag, and it’s easy to spot anyone who has wandered off from where they’re supposed to be.

I wore mine mostly strapped to my apron since I established in day one that hats give me head aches.

Dishing for the masses.

The easiest way to stir a giant pot of porridge is with a whisk attached to a drill!

Stirring…lots of that going on.

Andries – the master chef. Cooking in bulk can sometimes lead to bland, but I have to say every single meal was delicious!

Hats in action.

Bestie at our tents.

There is almost no signal in the crater (Vredefort dome), so if someone comes across some bars that spot quickly becomes very popular.

The Grade1s and some of the grown ups slept in dorms, everyone else pitched a tent.

As you can imagine that means a lot of tents. It can be tricky to navigate for the first few days until you pick some landmarks. 😉

Watermelons!

What we pack for one night away is more or less what we pack for 5. Obviously most of our stuff isn’t clothes.

Nicola’s group in action.

My pink terrorist…oh! Guess what?! She’s done with her pink phase. Her new favourite colour is black.

Pudding cups stampede.

The girls handing out apples.

This group of youngsters were called Taakmag. Shame, they worked very hard. It was nice to see them relaxing a bit too.

Anna, aka the hat pimper. Every morning she handed out a new hat embelishments for the adults.

In search of signal, not actually taking a selfie with the loo in the background.

The characters for the campfire concert. Shifo (skuifel), Po (poot) and the crocodile bandit (kwaai).

My smoking buddy. We have to smoke skelm on these camps.

Yolandi and I, making a vast amount of pudding…while having some ice lollies.

Sunrise…

The camp leader and her grandbaby.

Love this shirt haha.

No drinking on this camp. When I got home, I jumped in the warmest bath I could stand…and then treated myself to a sort of nightcap before sleeping the rest of the next day and a half.

Nicola and myself.

The kids kept their room spotless for inspections. They got rewarded beans for any good behaviour, and the group with the most beans at the end of the camp won a trophy.

Pudding!

Nicola and L-bestie!

Poot and Kwaai.

The best potjie I have ever tasted…ever!

Other than working in the kitchen, Yolandi and I also took care of the coffee station – a very popular table in a place where everyone functions on little to no sleep. 😉

On average the adults had 12 pots of filter coffee (1.7 litres each) and about 2.5 urns of instant coffee a day.

My cutie pie.

Yolandi and Chris’ tent turns into a spider when you take it down.

We named our tents (as you do). Theirs was Die Tabernakel, and mine was Die Driebeen Skilpad.

Some of the rice for a meal.

Camo!

Silezia having her chin tickled.

Sticky vetkoek fingers. T kept all the kitchen stock in order, not a small task by any means.

First day selfie compared to last day selfie shows a bit of wear and tear. 😉

One of the kichen geniuses made banana bread from some over ripe fruit. No bread pan? No problem! We Mcguyvered some from empty milk boxes.

Sunrise!

Nicola and L at the Tabernakel.

All the banners!

Campfire concert…

Every group got 30 minutes a day at the pool.

Oh and some of Yolandi’s photos below. See, I was also there! 😉

Oh and this photo! I love it…this is how I feel about chopping tomatoes with blunt knives. You might as well just beat them up with a spoon.

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No…I’m not dead

14 September , 2016

There is actually so much that needs writing, but you know…if I’m not writing it, there’s probably a pretty good reason for it.

Today however, I do have something fit for sharing though: parenting hacks!

It’s been quite a ride, changing from a one parent one child household to a two parent three children one. Especially since we only have time share on two and when they’re not here there is obviously a whole other set of rules in their other house with their other parent, that we have no control over. Add to that, that we never actually know when they’ll be here – it gets kind of crazy.

It got to a stage where I felt like a hostage in my own house, cause these babies really bring out the worst in each other sometimes. Of course when you only have timeshare on the fruits of your loins, you don’t always want to be disciplining them and laying down the law…I mean really, who doesn’t want to be the fun parent?! But when it’s a free for all chaos spectacular…no one really ends up having fun. Well I know I wan’t having any.

We needed an action plan that would entail a lot less of me screaming like a banshee and bringing the thunder, and a lot less chaos!

I don’t know about you, but I have always found comfort in a good list. So that’s what we have now…sort of. 

Behold our magic white board on display in the playroom. On the left we have the hooligans listed by age. On a Wednesday each of them get credited with R20. Each time they break a rule (listed on the right), they lose R2. On the next Wednesday they get paid out the balance as a good behaviour bonus.

Occasionally we also have reward challenges to encourage something we want. As you can see, for instance, they’re all on R22 at the moment. They earned R1 each for picking up dog droppings, and then another R1 each for trying and eating all their dinner, which was something new (beef stroganoff). Next to their names you can see their previous Wednesday scores. 

I can’t even begin to tell you how much sanity this has brought to our home! Worst/best case scenario R240 a month between the three of them…money well spent!

Next up…we all had our hands in our hair about missing hair brushes. Specifically Miss Erin’s. She has about 7 in and around the house, but because she likes to stroll and brush they end up nowhere to be founds when you need them, all the time.

Solution: we tied one to the bathroom door handle. It’s been there for about a month and a half now. 

This has made mornings much more pleasant!

Mealtimes are a general pain in the ass. I want to take our kids to a place where kids get one bowl of porridge a day and are happy and thankful about it. They all seem to think we run a restaurant!

Nicola is the only one of the three that eats vegetables, but she doesn’t eat anything with sauce or gravy. She won’t even look at jam of marmite. Scott seems to only eat yogurt, chips or bread at the moment…occasionally burny chips or chicken nuggets, and is more than happy to have only a big cup of oros for a meal, followed up by half a million half cups of hot chocolate. He will wake up everyone screaming at 2am for his next fix and no amount of discipline will make him desist once he has his mind set on it. Erin loves chicken steakletts, chicken nuggets and fish fingers, and chips. She doesn’t eat banana or anything strawberry flavoured. And other than apples the only other fruit she’ll have is red grapes. Also lots and lots of chocolate nesquick.

So we are piloting a new meal plan, because quite frankly we’re sick and tired of tip toeing the line between all their fusses. 

We came up with a list of things we think are suitable for dinners (all to be had with at least one vegetable of our choice – not written, but expressly noted). Each baby got a day to pick, Nicola got two because she’s here all the time. Steve and I got the weekend days. On Thursdays we are usually at my folks, or we’ll get take aways. 

They could pick off the list for their days. There will only be one meal cooked and eaten. Anyone who doesn’t eat the food will lose money on the board (I still have to add this rule), also they will not be getting anything else. 

I really hope this works. So far so good though. They were very enthusiastic about compiling the list and everyone ate what we made tonight. It’s a good start! 

What handy parenting tricks do you have up your sleeves? Tell meeeeeeee….please. Also clue me in on the reason why you came up with it to begin with if you can.